Israel as Innovator in the Attempted Mainstreaming of Extreme Violence

by Lisa Hajjar
published in MER279

The present era of counter-terrorism wars has severely damaged what, in hindsight, looked like a solid international consensus about which forms and levels of violence are “legal” in war and what “humanitarian” limits are imposed on such violence. The counter-terrorism paradigm of “with us or against us” in which the latter—and all that is proximate to it—is regarded as targetable upends the important distinction in international humanitarian law (IHL) between civilians and combatants and inflates the norm of proportionality to justify indiscriminate violence.

Hebron, the Occupation's Factory of Hate

by Joshua Stacher
published in MER279

“You are going to Hebron?” a Palestinian colleague remarked. “Oh, that’s a special place.” Thirty-two miles south of Jerusalem, Hebron is the largest Palestinian city in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, with some 215,000 inhabitants. The gritty, largely working-class town puts out anywhere from 33 to 40 percent of Palestine’s gross domestic product, depending on the estimate. The large mosque in Hebron’s old city houses the tombs of Abraham and his family, making the site holy to the adherents of all three monotheistic religions. But the above comment was not meant in an economic or a spiritual sense.

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Letter to Bernie, II

by Joel Beinin | published February 15, 2016 - 11:13am

Dear Sen. Sanders,

I’m a contributor to your campaign and enthusiastically support your bold, relentless critique of the billionaire class that is undermining democracy and making a decent life impossible for millions of people. I’d like you to speak more about how big money has been a destructive force in shaping our foreign policy as much, if not more, than our domestic policies. Perhaps no issue exemplifies this problem like Israel-Palestine.

China’s Stance on East Jerusalem

by Mohammed al-Sudairi | published January 28, 2016 - 9:58am

For those accustomed to the themes of Sino-Arab diplomacy, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s speech at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo on January 21 was predictable enough. It might not have attracted much attention at all if not for Xi’s statement that “China firmly supports the Middle East peace process and supports the establishment of a State of Palestine enjoying full sovereignty on the basis of the 1967 borders and with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

Tolan, Children of the Stone

by Dan Connell
published in MER276

Sandy Tolan, Children of the Stone: The Power of Music in a Hard Land (New York: Bloomsbury, 2015).

Two stories, two dreams: one realized, the other dashed.

A boy born to a fragmented, impoverished refugee family living under harsh military rule is mesmerized by the sound of a violin and vows not only to master the instrument but also to start a school to share its liberating beauty with others. And he does it.

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Operation Protective Edge

The War Crimes Case Against Israel’s Leaders

by Michael Thomas | published October 26, 2015

For 51 days in July and August 2014, Israel conducted a military operation in Gaza known as Protective Edge. It was the third major Gaza operation by the Israeli armed forces in seven years, and by far the most lethal and destructive. Some 2,205 Palestinians, including 722 militants and over 500 children, and 70 Israelis (64 of whom were soldiers) were killed. Thousands of Palestinians were wounded; over 18,000 of their homes were destroyed; some 470,000 were displaced; and large areas of Gaza were essentially razed.

Israeli-Palestinian Dialogue

Report from the West Bank

by Salim Tamari
published in MER111

One of the lesser known aspects of Palestinian politics over the last eight years has been the steadily growing contacts between a number of Palestinian and Israeli progressive groups and individuals in the occupied territories. Though unreported, those contacts have not always been clandestine. They have involved a much wider circle than more publicized meetings between the small leftist parties on both sides of the “green line,” such as Matzpen and the Communist Party.

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Danger Signals and Dress Rehearsals for a Palestinian Exodus

by
published in MER115

Jonathan Kuttab works as an attorney in Ramallah. He grew up in the West Bank. After finishing college in the US and getting a law degree from the University of Virginia, he returned to the West Bank in 1979. He recently obtained accreditation from the Israeli bar. He works with Law in the Service of Man, the West Bank affiliate of the International Commission of Jurists, which analyzes the military orders and legal mechanisms used to implement Israeli policy and documents human rights violations. He spoke with Joe Stork in Baltimore on April 12, 1983.

What is the situation in the West Bank since the Lebanon war?

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Resistance Museum in Abu Dis

by Alex Lubin
published in MER275

In the shadow of the Israeli separation wall, and on the bucolic campus of al-Quds University in Abu Dis, a suburb of East Jerusalem, sits a museum dedicated to Palestinian prisoners of Israel. The Abu Jihad Museum for the Prisoners’ Movement is named after the Palestinian political prisoner and martyr, Khalil al-Wazir or Abu Jihad, who gained notoriety as a leader of the first intifada and an advocate for prisoners’ rights. Al-Wazir was assassinated by Israel in Tunisia in 1988.

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Writing Palestinian Politics in Israel's Prisons Before Oslo

by Rebecca Granato
published in MER275

Since Israel occupied the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, around three quarters of a million Palestinians have been arrested, sometimes for actions taken against Israeli soldiers or civilians, but at other times for association with others or for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. In the early days of the occupation, thousands of Palestinians were rounded up, many serving sentences of ten years or more.

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