On September 21, 1922, the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate passed a joint resolution endorsing the Balfour Declaration passed by the U.K. House of Commons five years prior. Akin to its British counterpart, the statement endorsed a Jewish homeland in Mandatory Palestine while sidestepping the matter of demography and national rights for the Palestinian people.
With this special issue, the Journal of Palestine Studies addresses the signal moments discussed in an essay by JPS Editor Rashid Khalidi, “Historical Landmarks in the Hundred Years’ War on Palestine,” as well as several other aspects of the struggle over Palestine during the century since 1917.
In the Land of My Birth recounts the coming of age of a blind Palestinian boy of modest milieu during the turbulent years leading up to the fall of Palestine in 1948. Above all, it is the boy’s life—his struggles to make his way in the sighted world, his upbringing, schooling, friendships, and adventures.
The Journal is proud to present a feature by Sahar Francis on Palestinian women prisoners in Israeli jails. Her report is based on extensive interviews with former prisoners, and on her work at the head of an organization dedicated to the defense of prisoners’ rights. In tandem, managing editor Nehad Khader writes on former prisoner and outspoken human-rights activist Rasmea Odeh. Odeh’s conviction in Israel decades ago on terrorism charges was secured by a confession obtained after she was tortured and raped, and her recently ordered deportation from the United States (where she resides) was decreed by a federal court that did not allow these facts to be considered.
On 17 September 1948, Count Folke Bernadotte, member of the Swedish royal family and appointed by the United Nations as a mediator to seek a settlement of the Palestine conflict, was murdered in the Zionist controlled section of Jerusalem. His assassins belonged to a "dissident" group that had allegedly broken away from the Stern Gang.
Thirty-three years ago on 16 September 1982, the Lebanese Christian Phalange militia entered the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila in Beirut. Israeli forces occupied the surrounding city and allowed the militia’s entry into the camp. Over the following three days, at least 800 civilians were massacred as Israeli-manned checkpoints turned back fleeing Palestinians and Israeli troops fired flares to illuminate the camp at night.
On September 13, 1993, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasser Arafat signed the Oslo Accords’ Declaration of Principles. To mark that anniversary, we recommend an interview conducted by Senior Fellow Mouin Rabbani with Edward Said on the DOP's consequences for Palestinians:
On 12 September 2005, Israel completed its withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. While erroneously presented as a peace offering to Palestinians, the unilateral withdrawal rebuffed any cooperation from the Palestinian Authority, enabled an indirect Israeli occupation with Gaza's population treated as dispensable, and served the purpose of entrenching Israeli occupation in the West Bank.
Thursday, October 15, 2015 from 12:00 PM to 2:30 PM - Washington, DC
Senior Fellow Nadia Hijab and Alaa Tartir, Program Director of Al-Shabaka, on the future of the Palestinian political leadership:
On September 3, 1947, the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP) submitted its report to the General Assembly recommending the partition of Palestine into an Arab and Jewish state. UNSCOP's report foreshadowed the Assembly's passage of Resolution 181 on November 29; the so-called partition resolution, an effective green light for the Yishuv to conquer Palestinian villages and "transfer" their inhabitants outside of the allotted Jewish state.
The present battle by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to scuttle the 14 July Iran nuclear agreement may prove to mark a pivotal moment in the history of the organization and its status as vanguard of the so-called “Israel lobby.” AIPAC is fully mobilized against the American president, and its success or defeat may very well determine its future clout on Capitol Hill.