Latest in Israel

Israel-Palestine

Freedom to Grieve: On the Israeli Supreme Court Decision of Combatants for Peace v. Minister of Defense

In the past few years, the Israeli Supreme Court has been a target of political attacks, mostly from conservative circles, which claim that it prefers universal human rights over national values. These groups have made calls to curb the court’s authority and power.

Israel-Palestine

Is Limiting the Gaza Fishing Zone Collective Punishment?

Escalations in the armed conflict between Israel, Hamas and other armed groups in the Gaza Strip tend to follow a familiar pattern. Often, following the shooting of rockets or the launching of incendiary balloons from Gaza to Israel, the Israeli government will constrain the space available for fishing next to Gaza’s shores. When matters become calmer, the fishing zone is extended.

Israel-Palestine

The Flawed Human Rights Watch Report on Gaza

Human Rights Watch (HRW) recently released a report accusing both Hamas and the Israeli government of committing war crimes regarding an incident in May 2019. During these hostilities, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) struck 350 Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza after those groups launched roughly 690 rocket attacks into Israel. HRW’s report claims that both sides unlawfully attacked civilians during the hostilities.

Foreign Policy Essay

Russia Might Regret the U.S. Drawdown in Syria

Editor’s Note: The Syrian conflict, while hardly over, is diminishing. The Syrian people clearly lost, but who—other than the barbarous Assad regime—won? One candidate is Russia, whose military intervention helped save the regime and which has re-emerged as a power broker in the Middle East. Carol Saivetz of MIT, however, argues this may be a mixed blessing for Moscow. Although the regime has accomplished many things in Syria, these accomplishments have created new problems that will be tricky for Moscow to solve.

Daniel Byman

Middle East and North Africa

Recognizing Israel’s Claims to the Golan Heights: Trump’s Decision in Perspective

On Thursday, March 21, President Trump introduced yet another sea change to U.S. policy towards the Arab-Israeli conflict—this time by tweet. “After 52 years,” Trump wrote, “it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s [s]overeignty over the Golan Heights.”

Israel

Breaking Down the Combating BDS Act of 2019 and First Amendment Challenges to State Anti-BDS Laws

On Feb. 5, the Senate passed a package of Middle East policy bills, including the Combating BDS Act of 2019. The act, which would affect laws on the books in 26 states that prevent state and local governments from doing business with entities that boycott Israel, has reignited debate over whether lawmakers’ efforts to stymie the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel violate the First Amendment.

Israel-Palestine

Framing Israel: The U.N. Commission of Inquiry on the Spring 2018 Gaza Border Confrontations

Politicians, trial lawyers and drafters of reports learn early on that framing an argument is central to the task of persuasion. And so it goes for the report by the U.N. Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry (COI) on the border confrontation that occurred last spring between Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) and the tens of thousands of Gaza residents who sought to force their way into Israel by breaching the security barrier.

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