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  • Little, Brown US

The Best of Enemies: Memoirs of Bassam Abu-Sharif and Uzi Mahnaimi

Uzi Mahnaimi, Bassam Abu-Sharif

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Middle Eastern history

A onetime Palestinian terrorist and a former Israeli intelligence officer tell how, together, they renounced the use of arms and violence and helped bring about the 1993 peace accord between the PLO and Israel.

No one knows more about modern terrorism - its impetus, its technology, its secrets, its inevitable tragedy - than Bassam Abu-Sharif, a former Palestinian guerrilla, and Uzi Mahnaimi, a former Israeli spymaster. These two men, whose personal histories epitomize the struggle over Israel, were supreme practitioners of the vicious tactics characterizing the Arab-Israeli conflict. Now in a riveting double memoir, Abu-Sharif and Mahnaimi reveal life on opposing sides of the world's most bitter feud, and how they ultimately turned a cycle of violence into a search for peace. Bassam Abu-Sharif and Uzi Mahnaimi finally met in a London restaurant in 1988, many years after they both - for very different reasons - turned away from violence. In this strange meeting lies the heart of Best of Enemies. Their stories, and those of their fathers and grandfathers, encapsulate one hundred years of war between Arab and Jew. Unlike their predecessors, however, Abu-Sharif and Mahnaimi have joined forces in a new and more testing struggle: the fight for peace. Their quiet collaboration has steadily helped move the peace negotiations forward and set the stage for the Arafat-Rabin handshake of 1993.

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