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Israeli author David Grossman on the conflict in the Middle East

This week, while President Obama was overseas, Israel announced plans to build more than a thousand homes for Jews in predominantly Arab East Jerusalem. Obama said, “This kind of activity is never helpful when it comes to peace negotiations.” The Palestinians called for an immediate recognition of a Palestinian state. And Netanyahu described the reaction as “overblown.” It seems sometimes that peace between Israel and its neighbors will always be just out of reach, that perhaps the best we might hope for is a state of “un-war.”

It’s almost impossible for Americans to imagine what it would be like to live like that, fearing and distrusting our neighbors, always. But if there is one person who can express what that experience does to a person, it is Israeli journalist and novelist David Grossman.  He is a bestselling author and outspoken advocate for peace in his home country. From painful experience, he knows the consequences of this seemingly endless struggle. In 2006, during Israel’s second war with Lebanon, Grossman‘s son Uri was killed while serving in the Israeli military.