I Shall Not Hate by Izzeldin Abuelaish

Thanks to my niece for reminding me about this wonderful book written by a Palestinian doctor from Gaza.   I Shall Not Hate is a heart-wrenching, true story that left me with tears and hope at the same moment.

Overcoming challenges that would break most of us at an early age, Izzeldin used education as his stepping stone to get a medical degree in Cairo. He shares his youth and formative years, his opportunity to become the first Palestinian medical doctor to work in Israel alongside Israeli doctors, and the personal tragedies that strike his family in 2008 and 2009.

I remember hearing about this book months ago because of its connection to a peace camp for girls from Israel and Palestine located in Santa Fe, New Mexico —– Creativity for Peace.  Two of the author’s daughters attended this camp.  I have never visited it, although it is so close to my home in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  When I return to the USA, I will be sure to check out this Creativity for Peace camp.

Meanwhile, anyone interested in understanding Gaza and the realities of living under occupation, and especially the impacts of the 22-day war in 2008-2009 that Israel calls Operation Cast Lead, READ THIS BOOK!

Dr. Abuelaish shares a message that I learned deeply in the early 1980s with Beyond War in California.  We need to move beyond “us – them” and towards “we are one”.   I hope his book and his speaking engagements and the new foundation he is establishing (Daughters For Life), will reach a critical mass of people receptive to the message.

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