Al-Naqba (the Catastrophe)
A Novel about the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict
By Barbara A. Goldscheider
(Frog in Well, Paperback, 9781583941270, 258pp.)
Publication Date: September 2005
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Based on events, organizations, and locations that Barbara Goldscheider experienced while working on army bases throughout Israel, Al-Naqba, The Catastrophe follows the parallel stories of an elite Palestinian Arab and an officer of the Israeli Defense Forces. Asa Ibrahimi’s infatuation with the daughter of a desert sheikh is brutally ended when he’s arrested and beaten in the Russian Compound, two of his brothers are killed by Israeli soldiers, and his parents’ home in Ramallah is demolished. Israeli Colonel Neyri Ben-Ner attempts to begin a new life far from the instability of his country by going to Harvard and marrying an American woman. But a return to Israel brings him back to the horror of suicide bombings and mass murders. Both face a personal and political transformation with ramifications beyond their own lives. This epic novel blends drama, suspense, and romance, in the process tallying the tragedies to both parties in this seemingly unstoppable conflict.