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Israel’s lies on occupation exposed in new Ehrenreich book
Author and award winning journalist Ben Ehrenreich pens a new book that offers readers fair and balanced insight into the reality of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinians in a way that most mainstream American news media pretends does not exist. Ehrenreich has come under vicious attack from pro-Israel journalists, bloggers and organizations and the intensity of the assault only underscores the reality that what he writes must be true.
By Ray Hanania
Ben Ehrenreich’s new book “The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine” is not the book you want to read if you are happy to have pleasing propaganda and lies pumped into your brain mainstream-media-intravenously and through Israel’s top dollar PR spin.
But have you ever had that one moment when you paused from the thunderstorm like demonization of the Palestinians to wonder if all the stories you have been hearing through the mainstream American news media might just be lies, distortions and propaganda spin to protect Israel’s headlock on your mind?
If you care about human beings. If you are moved by compelling stories of humanity. And, if you really care about the truth, you must read Ehrenreich’s book “The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine.”
Ehrenreich began working as a journalist in the alternative press in the late 1990s, publishing extensively in LA Weekly and the Village Voice.
His journalism, essays and criticism have since appeared in Harper’s, The New York Times Magazine, The Nation, the Los Angeles Times, The Believer, and the London Review of Books. He has reported from Afghanistan, Haiti, Cambodia, El Salvador, Mexico and all over the United States.
In 2011, he was awarded a National Magazine Award in feature writing for an article published in Los Angeles magazine.
Ben Ehrenreich’s story is fascinating:
In the spring of 2013, after two years of reporting from the West Bank for Harper’s magazine and the New York Times Magazine, Ehrenreich moved to Ramallah and started writing what would become “The Way to the Spring.” He was moved by the injustices that he witnessed, and by the general silence about them in most U.S. media.
As well informed as he was on the Arab-Israeli conflict, he nonetheless was consistently shocked by what he saw, and by how little the vast majority of people in the U.S. (and even in Israel, just a few miles away) understood about the lived realities of the occupation. He felt strongly that he wanted to write to break through the silences.
In cities and small villages alike, men and women, young and old, a group of unforgettable characters shared their lives with Ehrenreich and made their own case for resistance and resilience in the face of life under occupation. Blending political and historical context with deeply human stories, “The Way to the Spring” makes clear that conditions on the ground are changing — and getting worse, in an accelerating dynamic that should provoke the conscience of us all.
In a great act of bravery, empathy and understanding, Ben Ehrenreich, by placing us in the footsteps of ordinary Palestinians and telling their story with surpassing literary power and grace, makes it possible for us to turn away.
Over the past three years, American writer Ben Ehrenreich has been traveling to and living in the West Bank, staying with Palestinian families in its largest cities and its smallest villages. Along the way he has written major stories for American outlets, including a remarkable New York Times Magazine cover story. Now comes the powerful new work that has always been his ultimate goal, The Way to the Spring.
We are familiar with brave journalists who travel to bleak or war-torn places on a mission to listen and understand, to gather the stories of people suffering from extremes of oppression and want: Katherine Boo, Ryszard Kapuściński, Ted Conover, and Philip Gourevitch among them.
Palestine is, by any measure, whatever one’s politics, one such place. Ruled by the Israeli military, set upon and harassed constantly by Israeli settlers who admit unapologetically to wanting to drive them from the land, forced to negotiate an ever more elaborate and more suffocating series of fences, checkpoints, and barriers that have sundered home from field, home from home, this is a population whose living conditions are unique, and indeed hard to imagine. In a great act of bravery, empathy and understanding, Ben Ehrenreich, by placing us in the footsteps of ordinary Palestinians and telling their story with surpassing literary power and grace, makes it impossible for us to turn away.
Watch Ehrenreich’s description of how he came to write his book by clicking here or by using the widget below:
Ben Ehrenreich’s book, “The Way to Spring: Life and Death in Palestine” will be released on August 1, 2017 in paperback from Penguin Books. 448 Pages. Also available in an eBook.
Visit his website by clicking here.
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Ray Hanania is an award winning political columnist and author. He covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, and at TheArabDailyNews.com, TheDailyHookah.com and at SuburbanChicagoland.com.
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com
Visit this link to read Ray's column archive at the ArabNews,com ArabNews.com/taxonomy/term/10906
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