My gratitude goes to Matityahu Korinio, Haia Noach, Sayāh al-Tūri, Aziz and Salim Abu Mdīghem, and Nūri al-‘Uqbi, for teaching me about the Negev and its history; to Aziz, Nūri, Salim, and Sayāh, and their families, whose resilience is extraordinary to witness; to Haia Noach, who has struggled alongside the Bedouins, advocating their cause; to Matityahu Korinio for sharing his enthusiasm for aviation and the land; and to Miki Kratsman for his generous counsel. Their knowledge and commitment helped me to find a voice and a visual language.
I met Eyal Weizman in London in the winter of 2013 and shared some of the Desert Bloom images with him. Our subsequent collaboration and his unique mode of inquiry expanded my understanding of the region and resulted in his groundbreaking essay, The Conflict Shoreline, published as a separate volume. My thanks to the Forensic Architecture team in London, particularly to Francesco Sebregondi and Jacob Burns for their mapping skills and astute research.
Eduardo Cadava has shared his reflections on all aspects of The Erasure Trilogy. I am grateful for Eduardo’s friendship and willingness to devote his searing intellect and warm spirit to several projects of mine over the years.
Thanks to Rani Mandelbaum, Michael Sfard, and Oren Yiftachel for their insight and guidance; also Joe Cohen, Malcolm Daniel, Tamar Dresdner, Mia Fineman, Edith and Emmet Gowin, Kim Jones, Ahmad and Fady Joudah, Michael Komem, Peter MacGill, Michael Mack, Rami Noach, the late Reuven Pedatzur, Daya Raz, Christoph Schifferli, Liana Theodoratou, Jane Watkins, and Ines Weizman.
Liz Jobey has worked on all of my books, and her friendship, facility with language and images, and thoughtful responses have had a profound impact on my work. I am grateful to have worked with Shela Sheikh, whose own practice and considered investigations added a new dimension to the project. Shela has been the mainstay of this volume, researching and editing with insight and determination to bring forth a precise document.
Gerhard Steidl, my publisher of twenty years, offered me a home in Germany and makes these books possible. Thanks to Duncan Whyte for his insight and skill during the design process; Victor Balko, Bernard Fischer, Achim Grohs, Stefan Hartmann, Judith Lange, Maren Mittentzwey, Reiner Motz, Inès Schuman, and all the fine printers at Steidl.
The wisdom and caring support of Alexandra Beck gave me the resolve to consider, contemplate, and return.