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We Refuse to be Enemies – How Muslims and Jews can make peace with Sabeeha Rehman & Walter Ruby

Growing up in Pakistan before she immigrated to the United States, Sabeeha never met a Jew, and her view was colored by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In his youth, Walter never met a Muslim, and his opinion was shaped by Leon Uris’s Exodus. Yet together they have formed a friendship and collaboration. Tapping their own life stories and entering into dialogue, they explain how they have found commonalities between their respective faiths and discuss shared principles and lessons, how their perceptions of the Other have evolved, and the pushback they faced. They wrestle with Israeli-Palestinian conflict and polarizing material in religious texts and history. And they offer us a shared vision for reconciliation.

Sabeeha Rehman is the author of the memoir Threading My Prayer Rug, which was a finalist for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, received the San Francisco Book Festival Award, and listed as a Top 10 Religion and Spirituality and Top 10 Diverse Nonfiction Book by Booklist. A blogger and public speaker, she is an op-ed contributor to the Wall Street Journal, and has published articles in Forward,, the NY Daily News, Tiferet, and The Baltimore Sun. She lives with her husband, Khalid, in New York City.

Walter Ruby is a veteran activist in Muslim-Jewish relations who has organized twinning events bringing together thousands of Muslims and Jews around the world. From 2008-2017, he was Muslim-Jewish Relations Director of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. Having lived in Israel, he served for decades as a reporter and commentator for American Jewish and Israeli publications. His articles and op-eds have appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and The Baltimore Sun. He lives with his wife, Tanya, in Frederick, Md.

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