Yossi Klein Halevi’s book “Letters to my Palestinian Neighbor” is a wonderful compendium of the Israeli narrative, beautifully written, sensitive and sensible which gives a pretty clear picture of the challenges we are up against with regard to a mutual understanding to achieve peace between Jews and Palestinians in Eretz Israel/Palestine. 

Nevertheless, despite the author’s understanding of the deep love and commitment both sides feel for the land they must eventually agree to share somehow, he doesn’t seem to trust them enough to consider other arrangements but the venerable Two State solution which politically by now appears nigh impossible to implement. Thus he summarily dismisses one of the more realistic alternatives, a federation (without calling it by name) with a dire warning and an analogy that doesn’t suit the situation.  

The book is important for anyone who wants to get a quick feeling of what the conflict is about with emphasis on the emotional aspects. While under the present political reality the book doesn’t really leave much hope for a timely resolution of the conflict, it nevertheless leaves you with a positive feeling which is credit to the author’s balanced writing.


Emanuel Shahaf 

Co-Chair, Federation Movement