The Holy Land is often presented as a story of two sides locked in a cycle of recurrent conflict: Jew vs Arab; Israeli vs Palestinian. For the outsider looking in, the situation is usually viewed through the prism of politics and history, while the human dimension falls by the wayside.
For those living on either side of the divide, the physical, political and psychological barriers breed misunderstanding, while the ideological no-man's-land separating Palestinians from Israelis stands in the way of an appreciation of the enormous social and cultural commonground the two peoples share. Any view of the peoples themselves, of the lives being lived in Jerusalem, Gaza, Tel Aviv or the West Bank, is clouded by the divisive politics of the region.
In Intimate Enemies, Khaled Diab explores the human lives at stake in the conflict. From Palestinians evading checkpoints to attend parties, to the different approaches Israelis take in defining personal Jewish identities, to the experiences of women, the book looks at what makes people tick.
It also becomes clear in this closer understanding of the people how misleading a simple notion of two opposing sides really is. Amongst both Israelis and Palestinians, Diab finds internal cultural, ideological and historical fractures which reveal that the difference within each camp are often greater than the differences between them.
Intimate Enemies is a deeply engaging read. Focusing on what life is actually like in Israel and Palestine, it is a unique insight into the peoples behind the politics.
Order the e-book via Guardian Shorts or Amazon.
Read an extract here: ‘The highs and lows of Aliyah‘
Voting for Palestinian liberation
March 2015 – Active and effective Arab political participation in the next Knesset can be a game changer, shifting the Palestinian struggle towards civil rights. First published on Al Jazeera as ‘What's a Palestinian vote worth?‘
March 2015 – Interview with Sarah Brown about Intimate Enemies and the “lost generations” of Palestinians and Israelis.
The concealed links between Israel's “invisible” citizens
February 2015 – An electoral campaign video targeted at Israel's “invisible” poor unwittingly highlights the long-neglected links between Mizrahi Jews and Arabs.
By Ksenia Svetlova, 9TV, 15 December 2014.
Video: Intimate stranger on Intimate Enemies
By Sarah Posner, Bloggingheads, 8 December 2014.
On Palestine, identity, and the ‘non-state solution:' Reviewing Khaled Diab's ‘Intimate Enemies'
By Yazan al-Saadi, Al-Akhbar English, 5 December 2014.
Book Review: Behind the ‘Zion curtain'
By Seth J Frantzman, Jerusalem Post, 4 December 2014.
A civil way out of the Israeli-Palestinian quagmire
November 2014 – How do you end the Israeli occupation without ending the occupation? Through a struggle for equal civil rights for Jews and Arabs.
Why Palestinians should demand to be ruled by Israeli law
November 2014, Haaretz, Khaled Diab – Current reality demands that Palestinians delay demanding their national rights in favor of protecting their human rights – by supporting right-wing settler legislation to apply Israeli law to all the West Bank.
Intimate enemies, future friends
November 2014, Corriere della Sera/Chronikler, Khaled Diab – As I cycle amid the growing cycle of violence, I believe peaceful coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians is plausible and possible.
The best hope for the peace process? The non-state solution
By Khaled Diab, The National, 8 November 2014. Read extended Chronikler version
Intimate Enemies: Interview with Khaled Diab
By Brian Whitaker, al-Bab, 22 October 2014.
Israelis and Palestinians: From intimate enemies to future friends
Talk at Tmol-Shilshom in Jerusalem.
Public lecture and debate
Dar Isaaf al-Nashashibi, 31 January 2015.
Public reading and debate
Kenyon Institute, Jerusalem, 15 December 2014
To register: https://www.facebook.com/events/1562805353938045/
Debate with academics
Institute of Palestine Studies, Ramallah, 3 December 2014