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From the River to the Sea

Humanizing Freedom

From the River to the Sea

By Reem Borrows

Red Thread Publishing LLC,

December 2023, 196 pages, US$18.99

Coexistence requires dismantling the borders and divisions that were constructed long before we existed.

In From the River to the Sea: Humanizing Freedom, Reem Borrows offers a compelling exploration of the Palestinian-Israeli plight, providing a fresh perspective that goes beyond political narratives. As an accomplished author, speaker, coach, and consultant, Borrows draws on her two-decade career, her personal journey, and the principles of the Dreem Health, Heart, and Head leadership framework to shed light on the underlying issues that perpetuate this complex and enduring conflict. The book had been written and a publishing contract signed before the events of October 7 and the latest onslaught on Gaza. Borrows chose to publish the book with only an amendment included as she felt the story needed to be told from the grassroots, and these events, as horrific as they are, are merely very painful symptoms and not the root cause of the problem.

The book unfolds in two parts: the first meticulously delves into the historical and present events, offering an intellectual examination of the root causes of the crisis. With a background in leadership consulting, Borrows explores the geopolitical situation through the lens of her leadership framework, emphasizing the importance of developing “whole” leaders globally who can display “grace under pressure.”

In the second section, Borrows issues a heartfelt call to action, urging readers to tap into their emotional selves. Through historical anecdotes and personal stories, she guides readers toward a more empathetic understanding of the human stories at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian struggle. The Dreem framework, initially designed for personal and organizational leadership, is adapted to address global geopolitical issues, emphasizing the interconnectedness of our world.

Borrows’s personal connection to the region adds authenticity to her narrative. A Palestinian born in Haifa post-1948, she shares pivotal moments from her life, including her family’s immigration, when she was 14, to Australia, where they experienced true freedom, unburdened by ethnic and religious divides. This contrast serves as a powerful backdrop to her exploration of freedom and the call for a collective shift toward operating from the heart.

The book challenges readers to reconsider their beliefs and behaviors, both as individuals and as part of larger organizations and nations. It is not a political piece but rather a holistic guide to transformative leadership – an approach that combines logic and emotion to navigate the complexities of our interconnected world.

In the call for empathy, Borrows emphasizes the need for a collective shift toward understanding, highlighting the stories of individuals living amidst the dispute. The book offers unbiased insights, backed by extensive research, providing a comprehensive perspective from the grassroots.

From the River to the Sea: Humanizing Freedom is an essential resource for students, concerned citizens, and policymakers. It promises to unveil personal stories, provide unbiased insight, and issue a call for empathy as a foundation for meaningful dialogue. It invites readers to challenge preconceptions, engage in thoughtful conversations, and embark on a journey toward a just and peaceful future for all involved. 

This exploration of a deeply misunderstood issue offers readers a gateway to a more harmonious, empathetic, and constructive path forward, void of complexity. It is a timely and essential read for anyone seeking a nuanced understanding of the Palestinian-Israeli struggle and the pursuit of a just and peaceful future.

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