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The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peaceby Dennis Ross
"If retail success were related to a book's historical importance, Dennis Ross's Missing Peace would outsell Bill Clinton's memoir by at least two to one. That's not a slam at Clinton's My Life, which I haven't read; it's a reflection of the detail, authority, and purpose of Ross's mammoth tome. For 12 years, from 1988 through 2000, Ross was the top US diplomat charged with managing the Middle East peace process....And here he tells us about all of it." Peter Grier, The Christian Science Monitor (read the entire Christian Science Monitor review)
Synopses & Reviews
"The definitive and gripping account of the sometimes exhilarating, often tortured twists and turns in the Middle East peace process, viewed from the front row by one of its major players."--Bill Clinton
The Missing Peace, published to great acclaim last year, is the most candid inside account of the Middle East peace process ever written. Dennis Ross, the chief Middle East peace negotiator in the presidential administrations of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, is that rare figure who is respected by all parties: Democrats and Republicans, Palestinians and Israelis, presidents and people on the street in Jerusalem, Ramallah, and Washington, D.C.
Ross recounts the peace process in detail from 1988 to the breakdown of talks in early 2001 that prompted the so-called second Intifada-and takes account of recent developments in a new afterword written for this edition. It's all here: Camp David, Oslo, Geneva, Egypt, and other summits; the assassination of Yitzak Rabin; the rise and fall of Benjamin Netanyahu; the very different characters and strategies of Rabin, Yasir Arafat, and Bill Clinton; and the first steps of the Palestinian Authority. For the first time, the backroom negotiations, the dramatic and often secretive nature of the process, and the reasons for its faltering are on display for all to see. The Missing Peace explains, as no other book has, why Middle East peace remains so elusive.
"This is the ultimate insider's account of the roller-coaster ride of the Middle East peace process from 1988 to the breakdown of talks in 2001. More than anything else, Ross, the chief U.S. negotiator for Presidents Bush 41 and Clinton, has written an epic diplomat's handbook. We see the moves and countermoves on both sides, the preparation that goes into any statement or gesture, the backroom wheeling and dealing and the dance of language and meaning. Ross lays out, in painstaking detail, the 'one step forward, two steps back' approach that finally led to such breakthroughs as the handshake on the White House lawn. He offers detailed accounts of Yitzhak Rabin's assassination, the rise and fall of Benjamin Netanyahu and a picture of Arafat 'seeking to have it both ways... La-Nam (no and yes in Arabic).' Ross's critical eye paints a vivid picture of the very different characters and strategies of Arafat, Barak and Clinton, and what led to the failure at Camp David. While Ross lands in the blame-Arafat camp, he is not without criticism of Barak and Clinton. Tragically, for all those who follow this region, Ross's book does not present a hopeful picture; the litany of failures sounds like a broken record: 'We left the region hopeful, but that hope was premature'; 'Once again, however, our best-laid plans went awry.' Sure to garner its share of controversy and media attention, this work of history in the making is essential reading for anyone interested in why we are where we are in the Middle East. Maps not seen by PW." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[A] brilliant and important insider's account that is essential reading for anyone wishing to better understand this seemingly intractable problem." Booklist (Starred Review)
"[A]n important addition to the literature of the Middle East conflict." Kirkus Reviews
"[An] important, voluminous and keenly balanced memoir of 12 years as the central figure of American Middle East peace policies." Ethan Bronner, The New York Times Book Review
The chief Middle East peace negotiator for the presidential administrations of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton shares a gripping personal narrative of the struggle for Israeli-Palestinian peace. In far and away the most candid inside account of the Middle East peace process ever published, Ross recounts the peace process in detail from 1988 to the breakdown of talks in early 2001.
The inside story of the fight for Middle East peace.
About the Author
Dennis Ross, Middle East ambassador and the chief peace negotiator in the presidential administrations of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, now heads the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland.
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History and Social Science » Middle East » Arab Israeli Conflict