Read review of Rayek’s spell-binding book about the joys and the pains of living in a unique village in Israel where Arabs and Jews live side by side.

Many books have been written about the Oasis of Peace –  the unique village in Israel where Jews and Arabs live side by side.   This is the first written that offers a thought provoking insight into the frustrations and the pleasures of living in a mixed Arab/Jewish village. Inspiration for the title comes from the broadcaster David Attenborough who describes the anteater and the jaguar locked together in a brutal embrace – the anteater torn by the jaguar’s teeth and the jaguar torn by the anteater’s claws.  An analogy that works for the author Rayek Rizek.  He is torn apart, the Jews and Arabs living in the village are torn apart as are those living in the wider community. In shreds but at the same time inextricably bound together –living on the same small piece of land and in the case of the village residents, sharing a mission towards a just and equal society. 

Against a background of the sometimes painful environmental and organisational changes required for the village to grow to the size it is today, Rizek recounts his personal journey.  It isn’t easy but he ends up understanding that “we are all right, we are all wrong, we are all victims”. 

An excellent read.  Highly recommended.               

Paperback: 290 pages

Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing

ISBN-10: 1545184186

ISBN-13: 978-1545184189

Available from Amazon