TO THE SECOND EDITION
The original edition of The Last Exile came out in November 2009. The sequel, Requiem for a Country, (November 2011), covered my life from a more defined geopolitical prospective; it also included footnotes and annotation, making the work both an adventure story and a textbook about the history of the 20th Century.
The two works now complete my project of telling every pertinent detail and discussing every pertinent controversy surround-ing the Jews and non-Jews from Sarajevo post WWI to Italy in WWII, from Spain of yore to America today.
I have been forced to single out the Jews only because after all my attempts to insinuate myself into the world as just one of its inhabitants, the world has told me that it will forever consider me The Other. OK, then, but let this ―other be properly branded as one of the tiny group of world citizens, who started the Judeo-Christian civilization yet ended up dispersed among nations, tolerated or not, often indistinguishable from their hosts.
Yet, I say, while the same as everyone else, hatreds never stopped setting us apart for scorn in spite of the Jews‘ contribution to culture, sciences and technology in reverse proportion to their size as a group.
The adversity brought me out of the humility of my upbringing to this hubris about being a proud and indispensable outcast of the world. If at times I sound as if challenging the hostile world to a Don Quixotic duel, it is because I retain the right to consider my-self indistinguishable from everyone else on the planet. I particularly feel identical to all those who were subjected to genocide, be it as Jews, Rwandans, Ethiopians, Armenians, Muslims or Kurds, and all those others too numerous to mention between two covers of one book.
As in 2011 with the Requiem, Julia Petrakis helped me again by editing this second edition of The Last Exile.
In Hightstown, NJ
March 13, 2012