The Last Palestinian: The Rise and Reign of Mahmoud Abbas

Grant Rumley and Amir Tibon. Prometheus Books, $24 (336p) ISBN 978-1-63388-299-7
Rumley, an American political consultant, and Tibon, an Israeli journalist, paint Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas as a politician whose calm reserve and intellectual bent made him Israel’s ideal negotiating partner but whose legacy will be that of “a missed opportunity.” Abbas emerged after Yasser Arafat’s death as the most credible figure to lead the Palestinians, but he failed to overcome internal divisions, never consolidating the power that could allow him to sell his vision for peace to the public. The Palestinian leader “was averse to terror,” the authors write, yet “he was unable to stop or even slow down the bloody onslaught.” Rumley and Tibon utilize impressive connections in the Israeli, Palestinian, and American establishments. However, they get little participation from Likud and other Israeli right-wing parties or from Hamas and other Palestinian groups. Abbas himself refused to be interviewed. What results is a captivating but necessarily incomplete biography; those consulted by the authors often seem to struggle for compliments to pay Abbas, a man with whom many are personally friendly and for whom most hold a great deal of respect, but whose rule they see as a disappointment, if not as an abject failure. Agent: Maryann Karinch, Rudy Agency. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/29/2017
Release date: 07/11/2017
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 274 pages - 978-1-63388-300-0
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