Yitzhak Ben-Ner's exciting suspense novel functions on several levels. Primarily, it unfolds an exciting plot; a bodyguard of the assassinated Prime Minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, seeks to assuage his guilt by penetrating a secret underground organization in the West Bank suspected of planning additional political assassinations. Shilo Slutzky, formerly an Orthodox resident of a West Bank settlement, is sent by Israeli Intelligence to infiltrate the ranks. His erstwhile identity enables him to fit in without arousing undue suspicion.
But Shilo Slutzky is more than a cardboard hero. In the West Bank settlement he feels the tug of his former roots and sympathy for the young people who live there. Will he turn his back on his mission and assist them in their assassination bid?
On a deeper level and with amazing sensitivity, Ben-Ner introduces political and moral issues faced by a torn and troubled Israeli society, and sketches an authentic portrait of some of its less familiar components. Wisely, the author suspends judgment, allowing the reader to form his own opinions about the critical dilemmas raised in the book.
Enemy Scope is a good example of the use of a popular, less than serious, genre of literature to discuss significant political and moral issues.
This is a book which might well appear... as tomorrow's newspaper headlines. It is a book which cannot - and should not - be read through the luxury of literary distance.
Like the best suspense novels, Enemy Scope reads fluently, its plot is riveting.