Here’s another book that I just happened to stumble upon. To be honest, I wasn’t even aware that King Abdullah II had even written a book, but after reading the jacket I decided to give it a read.
I’ve always enjoyed memoirs and this was an interesting mix of the King’s personal life and Middle Eastern politics from the perspective of one of the region’s leaders.
I think what I found the most interesting is the perspective on the Middle East conflict. All too often, those of us in the West are not exposed to both sides of conflict and as such, can not really form an objective opinion on the subject. King Abdullah II is quite candid in giving his thoughts, perspective and hopes for the region. At times, he is critical of all parties involved, and though Jordan is a modern Arab country that has been pulled into the dispute on many occasions, the King offers an informed, yet mostly objective view of the root causes and necessary solutions.
Will this book make you an expert on the Middle East? Absolutely not. Will you fully understand the complexities of the region and the root causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Nope. After reading Our Last Best Chance you will, however, have a much broader understanding of the issues and will probably even have some pre-existing beliefs proven incorrect. I know I did.
Overall, I would highly recommend this book to anyone with an interest in the conflict in the Middle East, how it affects the region and how it affects us.
Our Last Best Chance:
The Pursuit of Peace In A Time of Peril
By: King Abdullah II of Jordan
Publication Date: February 22, 2011
A newsbreaking memoir that tackles head-on the toughest challenge in the world today.
When a dying King Hussein shocked the world by picking his son rather than his brother, the longtime crown prince, to be the next king of Jordan, no one was more surprised than the young head of Special Operations, who discovered his life was in for a major upheaval.
This is the inspirational story of a young prince who went to boarding school in America and military academy in Britain and grew up believing he would be a soldier. Back home, he hunted down terrorists and modernized Jordan’s Special Forces. Then, suddenly, he found himself king. Together with his wife, Queen Rania, he transformed what it meant to be a monarch, going undercover to escape the bubble of the court while she became the Muslim world’s most passionate advocate of women’s rights.
In this exceptionally candid memoir, King Abdullah tackles the single toughest issue he faces head-on- how to solve the Israeli-Palestinian standoff- and reveals himself to be an invaluable intermediary between America and the Arab world. He writes about the impact of the Iraq war on his neighborhood and how best to tackle Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
Why would a sitting head of state choose to write about the most explosive issues he faces? King Abdullah does so now because he believes we face a moment of truth: a last chance for peace in the Middle East. The prize is enormous, the cost of failure far greater than we dare imagine.
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