Eric Rouleau was one of the most celebrated journalists of his generation, a status he owed to his extraordinary career, which began when Hubert Beuve-Méry, director of Le Monde, charged him with covering the Near and Middle East.
In 1963, Rouleau was invited by Gamal Abd al-Nasser to interview him in Cairo, a move which was not lost on the young Rouleau—going through him, a young Egyptian Jew who had been exiled from Egypt in late 1951, shortly before the Free Officers coup, was a means to renew diplomatic ties with de Gaulle’s France. This exclusive interview, which immediately made headlines around the world, propelled Rouleau into the center of the region’s conflicts for two decades.
Writing between Cairo and Jerusalem, Rouleau was a chief witness to the wars of 1967 and 1973, narrating their events from behind the scenes. He was to meet all the major players, including Nasser, Levi Ashkol, Moshe Dayan, Golda Meir, Yasser Arafat, Ariel Sharon, and Anwar Sadat, painting striking portraits of each. More than a memoir, his book presents a history, lived from the inside, of the Israel–Palestine conflict.
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