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That the Arab-Israeli conflict can be resolved within the confines of an encounter group is the unlikely premise behind the Jewish/Arab "joint model village" of Neve Shalom/Wahat as-Salam. Quite unintentionally, these two books confirm the allegation previously voiced in the exchange between Joseph V. Montville, Edward Alexander, and Ahmad Yusuf in this journal [1]—that the original idea of an apolitical meeting point for Jews, Muslims, and Christians has been perverted into an ideological project centered on the doctrine of Israeli guilt and Arab innocence.

Feuerverger, an associate professor of teacher development at the University of Toronto, undertook multiple visits to Neve Shalom where she applied her belief that the theories of American psychologist Carol Gilligan and French psychoanalyst Julia Kristeva offer insight into the dynamics of the Middle East. The result is adequately conveyed by her subchapter headings: "Reflexive Ethnography on the Border of Hope," "Between Aesthetics and Rigor: An Interactive Methodology," and so on. Combined with these pseudo-scholarly vacuities are the author's personal musings on her background as a confused Jewish Diaspora academic. Further added to the mix are extracts from her personal journal as well as interviews with various characters she encountered, with one section entitled "In Their Own Voices: Interviews as Resistance to Hegemony." Feuerverger's book stands as a testament to the boundless naiveté and self-obsession of North American academic liberals.

Explaining their work at Neve Shalom's School for Peace, former headmaster Halabi and his colleagues have produced a numbingly predictable collection of jargon-ridden essays on the mechanics of "dialogue." In his introduction, Halabi casually discloses that Israel's goals include "subjugating the Arabs by force" and that its methods involve "the system favored by the imperialist nations in the early 1900s." Among the Jewish contributors, Arie Nadler ridicules the idea of "conflict-resolution" and calls for an "interidentity dialogue about power and equality," while on the Arab side, Ramzi Suleiman warns the discussion "facilitators" that Jewish participants must not be allowed "to impose a ‘veto' on political and conflictive aspects." In short, despite its name, the School for Peace teaches not the reconciliation of differences but the promotion of conflict.

[1] See Joseph V. Montville, "Neve Shalom: A Model of Arab-Israeli Coexistence?"; Edward Alexander, "No, an Exercise in Jewish Self-Debasement"; and Ahmad Yusuf, "No, but a Useful Step toward Bi-Nationalism," Middle East Quarterly, Dec. 1998, pp. 21-32.