Global Reading Challenge ~ Country # 3) Algeria

the-attackFor Algeria I chose to read The Attack by Yasmina Khadra. Yasmina Khadra is the pen name for Mohammed Moulessehoul, a former Algerian army officer.

The attack is centred around Dr. Amin Jaafie – the grandson of a Bedouin tribal chief who leaves his homeland to become a doctor in Israel & later an Israeli citizen. He is the epitome of  Arab/Israeli integration & lives a dream existance, free from the turmoil taking place in his native Palestine.

In one fell swoop Dr. Jaafie’s life is turned upside-down, precipitated by the suicide bombing of a Tel Aviv cafe  in which his beloved wife, Sihem, is the primary suspect.  Initially Amin refuses to see that his wife could have been involved in something so barbaric, something so contrary to everything he belives, something so contrary to everything they have fought so hard to obtain. To try and reconcile the knowledge that perhaps he really didn’t know the woman he loved, Amin embarks on a journey to Bethlehem, then on to Palestine, trying to find out why & how the woman who was his exsistance could have betrayed him.

I would recommend this book to anyone – it definately gives one a small insight into the Arab/Israeli relationship & just how precarious the situation is that they find themselves in. I was shocked at how the Israeli soldiers behave toward Amin’s family near the end of the book & sadened by the book overall. It makes me glad to live where I do & that I greaw up in a religiously tolerant country, & at the same time shows just how destructive a force religion can be.


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