Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Book Review: Palestine Inside Out

Palestine Inside Out – An Everyday Occupation. Saree Makdisi. W. W. Norton & Company, New York, 2008.

By Jim Miles

This has been one of the most difficult books that I have ever read. It removed me from my academic detachment with which I read the majority of books and took me into emotions ranging from frustration, sadness, melancholy through to anger and belligerence. A compelling read, yet at the same time I had to put it down every so many pages in order to contemplate, digest, or simply escape what in sum could be called the constant inhuman brutality of one human against another. It is a brutality that is as much psychological as physical, as much emotional as bodily. While the media presents a relatively constant stream of news violence from Israel-Palestine, with the Israelis purportedly “responding” to Palestinian “terrorists”, the truth of life for the average Palestinian is not just this asymmetrical violence, but the daily violence perpetrated by the occupation, a collective punishment on the Palestinian population that “because the destruction is routine, it generally takes place out of the view of the global media.” It is death, destruction, eviction, genocide by a million cuts, applied over and over and over with full control of the geographical and cultural landscapes under the rule of the Israeli Defense Force (IDF)......."

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