“Occupied Thoughts”: Nathan Thrall, Peter Beinart, and “A Day in the Life of Abed Salama”


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In this episode of “Occupied Thoughts,” Peter Beinart interviews Nathan Thrall about Thrall’s new essay in the New York Review of Books, “A Day in the Life of Abed Salama.” The essay describes a Palestinian father’s search for his son following a bus accident, detailing layers of neglect, danger, and abuse faced by Palestinians living under Israeli control, whether in the Jerusalem, the West Bank, or inside the Green Line.

Nathan Thrall is the author of The Only Language They Understand: Forcing Compromise in Israel and Palestine (Metropolitan/Henry Holt). He is a contributor to The New York Times Magazine, the London Review of Books, and The New York Review of Books. His writing has also appeared in GQ, The Guardian Long Read, The New Republic, and The New York Times, and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. He is the former Director of the Arab-Israeli Project at the International Crisis Group, where he spent a decade covering Israel, the West Bank, Gaza, and Israel’s relations with its neighbors, from 2010 to 2020. He lives in Jerusalem with his wife and three daughters. He tweets @nathanthrall.

Peter Beinart is a Non-Resident Fellow at the Foundation for Middle East Peace. He is also a Professor of Journalism and Political Science at the City University of New York, a Contributing opinion writer at the New York Times, an Editor-at-Large at Jewish Currents, and a CNN Political Commentator. He tweets @PeterBeinart.