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.
The ongoing escalation in Jerusalem has resulted once again in Israel changing the status quo in its favor. On Friday, July 14, a deadly shooting in the Old City that ended at the Haram al-Sharif left three Palestinians and two Israeli policemen dead. This month’s Special Focus offers eight Journal of Palestine Studies articles* that, together, shed light on the status of Jerusalem and on the consequences of Israel’s heightened repression of Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem.
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.