An Improbable Friendship: Two Prominent Women, a Palestinian and a Jew, Join Hands to Fight for Peace By Anthony David

Anthony David Ì 5 review

For the first time I can see clearly the Israel and Palestine ... dilemma?! Hardcover I enjoyed the subject matter of An Improbable Friendship but found the writing style a bit grating. (The use of all-caps to signify yelling should be banned in print.) Also, the opening and concluding chapters are a bit hokey for my tastes. I'm interested in learning more about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but I doubt I'll pick up another book by this author. That being said, I appreciate his mission and his clear, though perhaps unrealistic, desire to be objective. Hardcover I picked this book as a memoir/biography choice, thinking I would learn more about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, which I did. I did not expect to like it as much as I did. As a matter of fact, I found it hard to put down and stayed up waaaaay too late reading.

This is a book about two extraordinary women living through extraordinary times. Their enduring friendship, despite being on opposite sides of the fence, is a testimony to the goodness that lies in the human heart. This book gives me hope.

I recommend it wholeheartedly! Hardcover Fascinating book about an incredibly unlikely pairing of friends. I really enjoyed this, very historical and detailed but very interesting! Hardcover Opportunity tragically missed

One weeps! For the Isrealies and Palestinians the golden window of opportunity for a workable country in the Holy Land was dashed by hard-liners. Had the leadership of the factions followed the leadership of these two marvelous women the Middle East might very well be a different place today. The stories of these two women and their friendship is an inspiration. The writer's clean, straight-forward style and empathy for all parties gives us a most worthy read for anyone interested in this chapter of the human journey. Hardcover

In this dramatic, historic book, American journalist Anthony David tells the story of two iconic women from enemy camps: Ruth Dayan from Israel and Raymonda Tawil from Palestine. We learn who they are, how they met, and how they discovered they were fighting for the same goal—human rights for all, regardless of nationality or beliefs. Their friendship has often been parlayed into bettering the lives of the less privileged around them.

Ruth Dayan is the widow of Moshe Dayan, who conquered the West Bank in the Six-Day War, and is an ardent advocate for human and women’s rights. Described by the Israeli paper Haaretz as Israel’s “Queen Mother,” she founded a house for fashion and decorative art, Maskit, that employed thousands of new immigrants, giving them a venue to preserve and modernize their ethnic crafts and culture. She has since been hired by the US State Department to do the same throughout Latin America. Raymonda Tawil, representative to Paris of the Palestine Liberation Organization, mother-in-law of Yasser Arafat, journalist, and feminist, finds herself in constant trouble with her government for being a long-time pioneer for rapprochement between Palestine and Israel. She has been called the “unofficial press officer of the West Bank” and remains among the most committed Palestinians for reconciliation with Israel.

With extensive research, the author gives us a new and unique window into both the Middle East and the intricate web of human stories behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
An Improbable Friendship: Two Prominent Women, a Palestinian and a Jew, Join Hands to Fight for Peace


The title, unfortunately, does not reflect the contents of this book. Other than a few brief, superficial references, virtually NOTHING was presented about the women's friendship. The first reference to it appears half way into the book: [the women's friendship] grew through regular conversations over tea....
Instead, the book focuses on the determined efforts of Raymonda Tawil (Yasser Arafat's mother-in-law) to bring Palestinians and Israelis together to resolve their differences and, to a far lesser degree, reveals the work of Ruth Dayan (Moshe Dayan's first wife) with immigrants and the poor to bring their crafts to market. It reveals the women's influence on leaders, but reveals virtually nothing about their personal
The book was of value for the behind-the-scenes look at the Arab-Israeli conflict and the political machinations of the leaders and their associates. It also provides insight into the struggles (often violent, sometimes peaceful) of both peoples to find a solution to their ongoing conflict. Hardcover Insightful story about the friendship of Ruth Dayan and Raymonda Tawil, two strong, intelligent and driven women with power and position on either side of the Palestinian-Israeli crisis. It was fascinating to hear about their individual lives and their combined work. I recommend this book, but with a strong caveat: the writing is horrible. It read more like a long Wikipedia article. Such a shame that this important story wasn’t given a better presentation. Hardcover Some people may consider the friendship of Ruth Dayan, an Israeli and the former wife of Moshe Dayan and Raymonda Tawil, a Palestinian and the former mother-in-law of Yasser Arafat to be improbable, but I have a feeling friendships like these have existed since the dawn of time, at least when men has been in charge of wars. These women worked to have peace, but the Israelis and Palestinians can’t trust each other, and while I didn’t think this was so much a book about their friendship (they weren’t mentioned together until more than halfway through the book) but about Middle Eastern history, in particularly of Israel, they both worked for peace, and in my opinion Raymonda did much more, not to mention is still in exile.

I am not very familiar with all of the history of the Middle East, but after World War II, when nobody wanted the Jews who had been hunted down and what amounted to the Holocaust, and so the powers that be decided they would give them the land that the Palestinians already occupied. This was a recipe for war that continues to this day. Both women believe that the answer is bringing people together not keeping them separate. Of course we as Americans learned that in our history, and are still learning it, and one would only hope that others could learn from our mistakes. Alas this is not true because we don’t even learn from our own mistakes.

I learned some things in this book, but it was far from being a fast-paced narrative as Good Reads claims. I trudged through this story because I wanted to learn more, and I have to say I admire both of these women, but Raymonda even more by being a Christian (she was baptized Catholic) Palestinian, and more than anything else feminist as her mother was. Hardcover If the world were run by women it would be a better world. Will there ever be peace in the middle east? Not in my lifetime I'm sure. It's interesting the impact these women had on the leaders - to get them to back down on some of their ultra-conservative, macho, racist actions. But these efforts only seemed to change specific events, not anything that made real change. They were more anecdotal episodes that enabled a temporary change in plans, like the grieving Palestinian Christian family that wanted to enter Jordan to attend a funeral. Israeli soldiers wouldn't let them through. Ruth made a phone call and they were able to get through.
If women really had a voice in these countries (not just token seats) I truly believe they could make a real impact on furthering peace efforts. Hardcover Rut i Raymonda przyjaźnią się już ponad czterdzieści lat. Przyjaźń nie powinna być żadnym zaskoczeniem, gdyby nie to, że w ich przypadku nie miała prawa się ona zdarzyć. Rut Dajan to Izraelka, żona Mosze Dajana, polityka znanego z niechęci do Palestyńczyków. Zaś Raymonda Tawil to palestyńska dziennikarka, która od zawsze nienawidziła Dajana, a przez to i jego bliskich. Jak to się stało, że losy tych dwóch kobiet splotły się na tyle mocno, by przerodzić się w przyjaźń?

Nieprawdopodobna przyjaźń to połączona biografia obu kobiet, a także historia ich wieloletniej przyjaźni. Już sam tytuł wskazuje na to, że ta przyjaźń nie powinna się była nigdy zdarzyć, a jednak się udało. Raymonda miała misję niesienia dobra i ukojenia bólu w kraju przepełnionym walką i cierpieniem, a Rut nie chciała odpowiadać za krzywdy wyrządzone przez potwora, w którego zmienił się jej ukochany Mosze.

Anthony David dokładnie opisał życiorysy obu kobiet, opierając się zarówno na ich własnych wspomnieniach, jak i zachowanych pamiątkach. Jego długie rozmowy pozwoliły na uszeregowanie chronologiczne wydarzeń, przez co książkę czyta się szybko i płynnie. Choć sama nie zawsze jestem przekonana do biografii, tak sposób opisywania historii przez Davida mnie ujął i zarówno ubolewałam nad wydarzeniami związanymi z wojną, jak i żałowałam, że w moim egzemplarzu jest zbyt mało stron.

Obie panie zaprezentowane są jako żywiołowe kobiety pełne energii i marzeń. Choć rozpoczęły życie i swoje działania w trudych dla swoich narodów czasach, to wierzą, marzą i działają, o czym naprawdę dobrze się czyta. Niejeden raz zdarzyło mi się zapomnieć, że nie są fikcyjnymi bohaterkami, a prawdziwymi kobietami z krwi i kości.

Mimo że w ostatnim czasie czytuję więcej biografii i autobiografii niż kiedykolwiek, to wciąż nie jestem do końca przekonana do tego gatunku przez sposób prowadzenia narracji. Anthony David swoim bestsellerem udowodnił, że można stworzyć historię ciekawie prowadzoną, wartką i przejrzystą, a jednocześnie opartą na faktach. Nieprawdopodobna przyjaźń podniesie Was na duchu, wzruszy, zasmuci, a jednocześnie może Was zaboleć serce lub odwrotnie - buzia od śmiania się. Książka jest pełna sprzeczności, tak jak jej bohaterki i wciąż nie dowierzam jak to się stało, że te dwie zupełnie różne panie o całkiem innych poglądach na większość tematów przyjaźnią się po dziś dzień. Hardcover