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.
While speculation about the fate of the movement and its role in Palestinian politics has reached unprecedented levels, it remains unclear how exactly will Hamas address the brewing crises at its doorstep. Whether the goal is to retain its political power or a return to its insulated resistance mode, the nature of the road ahead depends on how Hamas defines itself in light of largely different geopolitical realities from those that defined its inception in the late 1980s.
The Journal of Palestine Studies, the oldest English-language academic journal devoted exclusively to Palestinian affairs and the Arab-Israeli conflict, is a mix of peer-reviewed scholarly articles, reports, essays, and interviews, and includes documentary and other current materials useful to researchers. Published quarterly by the University of California Press at Berkeley, JPS is edited at the Washington, D.C. affiliate of the Beirut-based Institute for Palestine Studies, which also maintains an office in Ramallah. Rashid Khalidi, the Edward Said Professor of Modern Arab Studies at Columbia University, is the journal’s editor.
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.
Israel’s debacle does provide an ideal opening for the Palestinians to reclaim the international stature they have lost since Oslo and particularly in the decade since the death of Yasir Arafat. In order to do so, however, they first need to overcome their petty internal disputes, and once again become a factor that unifies the region in their support and thus deploys its collective clout on their behalf.
Palestine Studies Fellow Lisa Hajjar and Stanford University Professor Joel Beinin co-authored the Middle East Research and Information Project's “Primer on Palestine, Israel and the Arab-Israeli Conflict.” This comprehensive and concise survey is an excellent reference source on the history of the conflict and many of its most pertinent issues, including refugees, Jerusalem, and the Palestinian initiative at the UN.
Fellow Mouin Rabbani spoke to France 24 on Gaza's isolation and Palestinian fragmentation on the anniversary of Israeli withdrawal from the besieged territory.
Institute Fellow and Journal of Palestine Studies editor Rashid Khalidi on changing public opinion on Israel and Palestine and the responsibilities of Arab- and Muslim-Americans.