To anyone in my position I’d like to recommend a wonderfully candid book, which makes the [Israeli-Palestinian colfict’s] hideously insoluble complexities more vividly understandable than anything else I have encountered. Wryly ironic observational comedy dominates, but Delisle is no cynical satirist. He genuinely wants to understand, and in the course of his little adventures, he stumbles on some of the strangest elements in the city’s demography, such as the Samaritan minority and the communities of Arab Christians living in the Jewish settlements. Repeatedly, he also finds himself confronting the city’s adamantine physical barriers and the triviality of its tit-for-tat mentality, compounded by the sheer stupidity of intolerance, fanaticism and superstition.

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