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Richard Falk and Noura Erakat

Palestinian Hunger Strikers: Fighting Ingrained Duplicity

[Palestinians hold photographs of their relatives jailed in Israel during a support rally for Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, May 5, 2012. Image by Majdi Mohammed/AP Photo.]

On his seventy-third day of hunger strike, Thaer Halahleh was vomiting blood and bleeding from his lips and gums, while his body weighs in at 121 pounds—a fraction of its pre-hunger strike size. The thirty-three-year-old Palestinian follows the still-palpable footsteps of Adnan Khader and Hana Shalabi, whose hunger strikes resulted in release. He also stands alongside Bilal Diab, who is also entering his seventy-third day of visceral protest. Together, they inspired nearly ...

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Richard Falk is the Albert G. Milbank Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University and Visiting Distinguished Professor in Global and International Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Falk has been Special Rapporteur on Occupied Palestine for the UN Human Rights Council since 2008, and served on a panel of experts appointed by the President of the UN General Assembly in 2008-2009. He is also a member of the editorial board of several journals and magazines, including the American Journal of International LawThird World Quarterly,GlobalizationsThe Nation, and The Progressive. Among his many books are: The Role of Domestic Courts in the International Legal OrderLegal Order in a Violent WorldThe Status of Law in International SocietyThe Vietnam War and International LawThis Endangered Planet: Prospects and Proposals for Human SurvivalLaw in an Emerging Global Village: A Post-Westphalian PerspectivePredatory Globalization: A Critique;Human Rights HorizonsReligion and Humane Global GovernanceThe Great Terror WarThe Declining World Order: America’s Neoimperial GeopoliticsThe Record of the Paper: How theNew York Times Misreports Foreign Policy (with Howard Friel); Crimes of War: Iraq (edited with R.J. Lifton and Irene Gendzier); Israel-Palestine on the Record: How the New York Times Misreports Conflict in the Middle East (with Howard Friel); The Costs of War: International Law, the UN, and World Order after IraqHuman Rights: Critical Concepts in Political Science (edited with Hilal Elver and Lisa Hajjar); At the Nuclear Precipice(edited with David Krieger); and Achieving Human Rights.

Noura Erakat  is a human rights attorney and writer. She is currently an adjunct professor of international human rights law in the Middle East at Georgetown University and is the US-based Legal Advocacy Coordinator for Badil Center for Palestinian Refugee and Residency Rights. Most recently she served as Legal Counsel for a Congressional Subcommittee in the House of Representatives, chaired by Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich. She has helped to initiate and organize several national formations including Arab Women Arising for Justice (AMWAJ) and the U.S. Palestinian Community Network (USPCN). Noura has appeared on Fox’s “The O’ Reilly Factor,” NBC’s “Politically Incorrect,” MSNBC, and Al-Jazeera Arabic and English. Her publications include: "Litigating the Arab-Israeli Conflict: The Politicization of U.S. Federal Courts" in the Berkeley Law Journal of Middle Eastern and Islamic Law, "Arabiya Made Invisible: Between the Marginalization of Agency and the Silencing of Dissent" in a Syracuse Press anthology, and "BDS in the USA: 2001-2010," in the Middle East Report. She is a Co-Editor of Noura is currently completing her LLM in National Security at Georgetown University Law Center. You can follow her on Twitter at @4noura.