Preemptive Love

Pursuing Peace One Heart at a Time

Preemptive Love

Love first. Ask questions later.

Preemptive Love invites you to walk alongside Jeremy Courtney and his family on their quest to pursue peace and mend hearts in a broken world, learning what it means to go beyond good intentions and risk everything for something more: a lifetime of tomorrows for children who were sentenced to death, relationships restored, and violence undone.

In Jeremy’s own words, “I no longer accept the zero-sum worldview that says we cannot simultaneously be on the side of the Democrats and Republicans; Americans, Israelis, and Ira­nians; Jews and Palestinians; Sunnis and Shias; Arabs, Kurds, and Turks. I choose them all. I don’t lean left or right. I lean in. I lean forward, because that’s where love lives.”

Violence unmakes the world. Preemptive love unmakes violence.
  • Howard Books | 
  • 240 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781476733463 | 
  • October 2013
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Preemptive Love includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Jeremy Courtney. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Preemptive Love is the true story of Jeremy and Jessica Courtney and their quest to put love before all else—no matter the risk. Jeremy Courtney shares with readers the journey he took with his wife, their friends, and sometimes even their enemies in order to start the Preemptive Love Coalition (PLC). The mission of PLC is simple: save as many Iraqi children as possible who are in need of heart surgery—a prevalent problem in Iraq post-Saddam Hussein’s chemical warfare, more than a decade of sanctions, and outstanding environmental questions that many have linked to American and British weapons during the 2003 Iraq War; especially since there are few surgeons in the country willing and able to perform surgery on these gravely ill children. Faced with nearly every problem imaginable, Jeremy and his community begin saving lives and seeing glimmers of peace amidst the violence and unrest of present-day Iraq.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. The story of Preemptiv see more

Articles About This Book


Posted on Tips on Life & Love

Posted by Jeremy Courtney

Since my wife and I moved to Iraq with our (now) two kids in the middle of the Iraq War (detailed in my new book, Preemptive Love), a combination of outside pressures and internal controls have helped our family reclaim some of the essence of the...

About the Author

Jeremy Courtney
Photograph by Abigail Criner

Jeremy Courtney

Jeremy Courtney is cofounder and executive director of the Preemptive Love Coalition (PLC), an international development organization based in Iraq that provides lifesaving heart surgeries to Iraqi children and trains local doctors and nurses. Jeremy resides in Iraq with his wife, two children, and an indispensable team of dear friends.