Special Focus: Arab Jerusalem

Walid Khalidi on Jerusalem: 

Israel has already surrounded East Jerusalem with concentric rings of colonies on West Bank territory outside but contiguous to the municipal borders of the city. The plan, already well advanced, is to integrate these colonies with united municipal Jerusalem in order to create Greater or Metropolitan Jerusalem. A great advantage and indeed the prime objective of this strategy for Israel is that the more Palestinian territory that is alienated from the West Bank in the name of Metropolitan Jerusalem, the less the physical, political, and psychological space that will be left for the Palestinians there in the West Bank. One can count on Netanyahu to carry this strategy to its very farthest extent. 


The area of David’s ancient capital per se constitutes less than 1 percent of today’s so-called united Jerusalem. No religious, historical, economic, or security considerations informs the extended municipal boundaries of East Jerusalem, much less those of Metropolitan Likudist Jerusalem. What does inform them is ruthless gerrymandering in the service of solipsistic nationalism and a spirit of defiance of world opinion. 

BDS, Israel, and the World System

In the Feature Article in the most recent issue of the Journal of Palestine Studies (Vol. 45, No. 1), Joshua Sperber analyzes Israel’s actions and policies within a predominantly neorealist framework. Accordingly, he argues that U.S. domestic factors as well as Israeli domestic factors and political culture play little to no role in Israel’s foreign policy decisions, which are instead largely determined by John Mearsheimer’s five neorealist principles that drive all states. Additionally, the article discusses political economic factors and specifically addresses the claims made in Jonathan Nitzan and Shimshon Bichler’s The Global Political Economy of Israel. Here the argument supplements neorealism by focusing on economics as a historically specific vehicle of modern power. It concludes that the root of Israeli violence and impunity is the international system itself and criticizes the Left and the BDS movement for not adequately grappling with this fact.

Zionist Terrorism, Then and Now

On January 3, 2016, Israeli prosecutors filed a murder indictment against 21-year-old Amiram Ben-Uliel for reportedly firebombing the Dawabsha family home in the West Bank village of Duma, which killed 18-month-old Ali and his parents Saad and Riham; five-year-old brother Ahmed remains hospitalized in Israel.

For our January Special Focus – Zionist Terrorism, Then and Now, we are highlighting a series of articles from our Journal of Palestine Studies on the history, animating ideology and context of Jewish terrorism in Mandate Palestine and Israel. 

Operation Cast Lead: Seven Years Later

On December 27, 2008, the Israel Defense Forces launched an assault on the besieged Gaza Strip. For the next 22 days, Gaza’s over one million residents bore witness to an unprecedented Israeli war on a Palestinian territory. By the conflict’s end, the Palestinian death toll numbered over 1,400; mainly civilians, including over 300 children. 13 Israelis were reported dead, four from friendly fire.

How Israeli Settlements Stifle Palestine’s Economy

In this policy brief, IPS Senior Fellow Leila Farsakh and Al-Shabaka Policy Fellow Nur Arafeh and Policy Advisor Samia al-Botmeh debunk Israel’s arguments by demonstrating the devastating impact Israel’s settlement enterprise has had on the Palestinian economy, dispossessing Palestinians of their land, water, and other resources and creating mass unemployment.

Abandoned Yet Central: Gaza and the Resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Harvard researcher Sara Roy held a round table on Gaza during last year's MESA conference in Washington, D.C. The Institute for Palestine Studies is pleased to publish the presentation papers here for the first time: “The Coming War Will Be a Nightmare,” Paul Gaston Aaron; “Gaza: The Unprotected Edge of Palestine,” Brian K.


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