My Life in the PLO: The Inside Story of the Palestinian Struggle

Shafiq Al-Hout

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This is the inside story of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), from its beginnings in 1964 to the signing of the Oslo agreement in 1993.

For over three decades, the main goal of the PLO was to achieve a just peace in the Arab-Israeli conflict, and to build a democratic state in Palestine for all its citizens. Shafiq Al-Hout, a high ranking PLO official until his resignation in 1993, provides previously unavailable details on the key events in its history such as its recognition by the UN and the Oslo peace negotiations. Taking us right to the heart of the decision-making processes, this book explains the personalities and internal politics that shaped the PLO's actions and the Palestinian experience of the twentieth century.

Although he was an insider, Al-Hout's book does not shy from analysing and criticising decisions and individuals, including Yasser Arafat. This book is an essential piece of history that sheds new light on the significance of the PLO in the Palestinian struggle for justice.


"In this refreshingly unconventional chronicle of a half-century of Palestinian nationalism, tough-minded Shafiq al-Hout never flinches from talking truth to power." – Jonathan Randal, retired Washington Post correspondent

Shafiq Al-Hout was one of the leading figures of the PLO, from its foundation through to the Oslo Agreement. He has written numerous articles, essays and books, including The Left and Arab Nationalism (1959), The Palestinian between Diaspora and State (1977) and Moments of History (1986). He lived in Beirut until his death in 2009.
  1. Jaffa, my city
  2. From homeland to exile
  3. From journalism to politics
  4. The birth of the Palestine Liberation Organization
  5. The factions gain control of the PLO
  6. Jordanian–Palestinian relations
  7. Nasser as I knew him
  8. Fratricidal wars
  9. The PLO at the United Nations
  10. Palestine, around the globe
  11. The Israeli invasion of Lebanon
  12. The Sabra and Shatila massacre
  13. After the departure
  14. The mysterious triangle
  15. The second exodus from Lebanon
  16. The session that changed the path
  17. The Intifada of Stones
  18. Return to the Executive Committee
  19. No final solution without a single democratic Palestine
  20. The night of Abu Ammar's plane crash
  21. Resigning in protest over the Oslo Agreement
  22. After the resignation
  23. My heart rebels
  24. Coming out of a dark abyss



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