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Lisa Hajjar

Co-Editor

هل ما زال قطاع غزة محتلا؟ وما جدوى السؤال

[تصوير جورج عازار ]

      [ هذا المقال جزء من ”أصوات من أجل غزة" وهو ملف خاص تنشره جدلية على مدار شهر كامل. للإطلاع على بقية المقالات اضغط/ي هنا] نعم مازال قطاع غزة محتلاً، فبالرغم من الاحتجاجات الإسرائيلية الرسمية  حول إنهاء الاشتباك الأحادي الجانب والمتفق عليه في عام ٢٠٠٥ والذي أزال القواعد الإسرائيلية العسكرية والمستوطنات اليهودية والذي حول القطاع إلى منطقة ”لم تعد محتلة“ فإن هذه التغيرات وكل ما حصل منذ ذلك لم يؤد فعليا إلى انتهاء الاحتلال. الاحتلال ...

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Classified Memories: Trying To Try Terror Suspects Who Were Tortured by the CIA

Two high-profile cases being prosecuted in the military commissions at Guatanamo raise exceptionally challenging problems for the US government as well as the civilian and military lawyers defending the suspects. One case involves five people, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who are accused of responsibility for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The second case is against Abdul Rahim al-Nashiri, who is accused of participating in the bombing of the USS Cole off the coast of ...

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Actualizacion sobre la guerra con aviones no tripulados: El arte de ganar enemigos

Pakistani mourners for civilians killed in US drone strike. Image from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.]

[This article was originally written by Lisa Hajjar and published by Jadaliyya in English. It was translated into Spanish by Sinfo Fernández and published by Rebelión.]  Actualización sobre la guerra con aviones no tripulados: El arte de ganar enemigos El 1 de agosto de 2013, el Secretario de Estado estadounidense John Kerry hizo un anuncio en Islamabad, adonde se había desplazado en un intento de resucitar las estratégicas ...

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How To Lose Friends and Alienate People: An Update on Drone Warfare

[Pakistani mourners for civilians killed in US drone strike. Image from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.]

On 1 August 2013, US Secretary of State John Kerry made an announcement in Islamabad, where he had gone to resuscitate bilateral US-Pakistani strategic negotiations. At a press conference, he said that the United States was committed to end drone strikes in Pakistan in the near future. “I think [President Obama] has a very real timeline, and we hope it's going to be very, very soon.” The plan to wind down drone warfare was essentially a precondition to resume negotiations ...

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The Agony and the Irony of Guantanamo’s Mass Hunger Strike

[Force feeding restraint chair. Image by Jason Leopold.]

The executive order pledging to close Guantánamo within a year, signed by freshly inaugurated President Barack Obama on his second day in office, is a dead letter. Over the past two months, however, the president has recommitted to his 2009 pledge, including appointing a special envoy to head the effort to break through the stalemate that is largely the product of domestic politics. Clearly, one trigger for this renewed attention to Guantánamo is the mass ...

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The Least of All Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence from Arendt to Gaza

[Cover of Eyal Weizman,

Eyal Weizman, The Least of All Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence from Arendt to Gaza. New York: Verso, 2011. [This review was originally published in the most recent issue of Arab Studies Journal. For more information on the issue, or to subscribe to ASJ, click here.] In that historical moment after the September 11 terrorist attacks, American politicians and pundits launched a debate about whether torture should be employed to combat terror. Those who endorsed the ...

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Lawfare and Armed Conflict: Comparing Israeli and US Targeted Killing Policies and Challenges against Them

[Lisa Hajjar. Image from below video]

In this public lecture, I engage the concept of lawfare (an amalgamation of “law” and “warfare”) to compare Israeli and US twenty-first century armed conflicts. Specifically, I focus on both states’ targeted killing policies and the legal rationales that have been advanced to try to project their lawfulness, and legal challenges to these policies in order to tell a larger story about the relationship between contemporary practices of law and war. In order to tell this story, ...

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New Texts Out Now: Lisa Hajjar, Torture: A Sociology of Violence and Human Rights

[Cover of Lisa Hajjar,

Lisa Hajjar, Torture: A Sociology of Violence and Human Rights. New York: Routledge, 2012 [“Framing Twenty-First Century Social Issues” series]. Jadaliyya (J): What inspired you to write this book? Lisa Hajjar (LH): Torture is my great and terrible obsession. I think, read, write, and talk about torture all the time, as anyone who knows me can attest. I was inspired to write this book in order to share my knowledge, my passion, and—to be blunt—my anger about torture with ...

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Is Gaza Still Occupied and Why Does It Matter?

[Entering Gaza at the Erez Checkpoint. Image by Olly Lambert.]

Yes, the Gaza Strip is still occupied. Despite official Israeli remonstrations that the unilateral disengagement of 2005, which removed Israeli military bases and Jewish settlers, transformed Gaza into “no longer occupied territory,” neither those changes nor anything that has transpired since has ended the occupation. “Occupation” is a legal designation of an international nature. Israel’s occupation of Gaza continues to the present day because (a) Israel continues to ...

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Anatomy of the US Targeted Killing Policy

[RQ-1 Predator aircraft at Tallil Air Base, Iraq. Image from Flickr.]

As President Barack Obama geared up for the 2012 campaign, he and his administration were eager to capitalize on their most bipartisan “victory” -- the targeted killing of Osama bin Laden on 2 May 2011. With the one-year anniversary of bin Laden’s death approaching, top officials took to podiums to deliver remarks that, while differing in some particulars, were consistent in their message: The targeted killing policy is legal, it is necessary to keep Americans ...

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CIA: KUBARK's Very Long Shadow

[Lobby seal from the original CIA building. Image from Wikimedia Commons.]

A 2011 FBI "primer" on overseas interrogations, which became public on August 2, 2012, as a result of Freedom of Information Act action taken by the American Civil Liberties Union, repeatedly cites the Central Intelligence Agency's 1963 KUBARK Counterintelligence Interrogation. KUBARK was the code name the CIA used for itself. The FBI briefing also cites the CIA's 1983 Human Resource Exploitation Manual (Honduras version) which was compiled by sections of KUBARK ...

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Litigating the New Frontier in the War on Terror

[Model drone in front of the White House. Image from Brendan Smialowski / AFP]

In the landscape of the global “war on terror,” the Center for Constitutional Rights and the American Civil Liberties Union are veteran pioneers. CCR hacked into the “legal black hole” of Guantánamo by pursuing the first challenge, back in February 2002, to the denial of habeas corpus for people detained there incommunicado; they prevailed at the Supreme Court in 2004. The ACLU tunneled into the glacier of governmental secrecy with one Freedom of Information Act ...

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Roundtable on Targeted Killing: Lawfare and Targeted Killing Revisited--A Response

[An envisioning of lawfare. Image from Harper’s.]

[This is the sixth part of a six-part series associated with a Jadaliyya roundtable discussing targeted killings . Participants include Richard Falk, Nathan Freed Wessler, Pardiss Kabriaei, Leonard Small, and Lisa Hajjar. Click here for the introduction to the roundtable.]  The speech that Attorney General Eric Holder delivered on 5 March 2012 in which he outlined the Obama administration’s position on the legality of the ...

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Lawfare and Targeted Killing: Developments in the Israeli and US Contexts

[Training photo of Israeli special forces; Image from Zvi Koren/Polaris Images.]

Over the last decade, the term lawfare, an amalgamation of “law” and “warfare,” has been adopted and popularized among people engaged in monitoring, judging and debating the legality of a state’s wartime behavior vis-à-vis enemies on and off the battlefield. Today, the dominant theme in debates about lawfare turns on the contested legitimacy of litigation to challenge military and security policies and practices; and efforts to sue or prosecute state agents, ...

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Roundtable on Occupation Law: Part of the Conflict or the Solution? (Part II: Lisa Hajjar)

[Meir Shamgar in center. Image from idi.org.il]

[This is the second part of a six-part series associated with a Jadaliyya roundtable discussing the relevance of occupation law to the Palestinian-Israel conflict at this historical juncture. Participants include Darryl Li, Lisa Hajjar, Nimer Sultany, Asli Bali, Ahmed Barclay, and Dena Qaddumi. A description of the roundtable can be found here.]  The West Bank and the Gaza Strip are the quintessential “hard case” in international humanitarian law (IHL). With the ...

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US Detention Post-9/11: Birth of a Debacle (Part 1 of 5 Part Series)

[First prisoners arrive at Guantanamo on 11 January 2002. Image from Gallo/Getty]

Days after the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, the Bush administration started making decisions that led to the official authorization of torture tactics, indefinite incommunicado detention and the denial of habeas corpus for people who would be detained at Guantánamo, Bagram, or “black sites” (secret prisons) run by the CIA, kidnappings, forced disappearances and extraordinary rendition to foreign countries to exploit their torturing services. While some of ...

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The Legal Campaign Against American Torture

[Attorneys Tom Durkin, Lt. Cmdr. Suzanne Lachelier and Lt. Col. Jon Jackson at a 2008 press conference at Guantanamo. Image from LIFE.

Torture, like genocide and crimes against humanity, is a gross crime under international law. The right not to be tortured is constituted through the prohibition of practices that purposefully cause harm (physical and/or psychological) to persons who are in custody but have not been found guilty of a crime. (The international legal definition excludes lawful punishments regardless of their brutality.) The right not to be tortured is exceptionally strong, at least in ...

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Following the Torture Trail through the Arab Spring: First Speculations

[Egyptian protester stenciling image of Khaled Said on Egyptian Ministry of Interior. Image from Hossam El-Hamalawy]

Torture and anti-torture are everywhere. Are the revolutions sweeping through the Arab world, and being confronted with violent counter-revolutions, in part a battle over the use of torture? It is, perhaps, too early to know how significant or central torture is to the protest movements that have disposed of the torture-prone regimes in Tunisia and Egypt, and the ongoing battles against authoritarians in Syria, Yemen, Bahrain, not to mention the Palestinian Authority, Saudi ...

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Update from Islamophoberia

[Glenn Beck. Image from The Daily Awesome]

Islamophoberia, a place millions of Americans call home, will get a lot colder come 2012 because the main gasbag is being shut down in December. The decision of Fox News to cancel The Glenn Beck Show will leave the idiosphere scrambling for a new source of fuel to motor anti-Muslim ranting. Sure, there are alternative sources, like bacon-bookmarked Qur’an burning proponent Ann Barnhardt, who admonished her blog readers: “Go out, buy a Koran, video yourself burning it and ...

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What Emergency? The ADL, Academic Freedom, Lawfare, and Palestine

[Palestinian boy crawling through the wall. Image by Baz Ratner/Reuters]

On the evening of March 24, the board of directors of University of California – Hastings College of the Law held an emergency meeting that lasted until midnight. The putative emergency was a two-day conference titled “Litigating Palestine” scheduled to start at 3 pm the following day. What resulted was the following statement: BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Directors…in its EMERGENCY CLOSED SESSION that it is in agreement that the College should take all steps ...

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Personal Posts

Is There A Pill For This?

[Image from OliviaB]

In my first Jadaliyya post, I 
described my “great and terrible obsession” with torture. Generally 
speaking, I love my obsession; thinking and talking about torture in an age of torture
 seems not only rational and reasonable but politically responsible. I’d
 bet my torture-related information command center (i.e., the part of my
 brain that stores, categorizes and operationalizes torture data) would 
be a source of great riches if there was a Jeopardy-Torture game ...

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Bio

Lisa Hajjar

 

 

Lisa Hajjar is a professor of sociology at the University of California -- Santa Barbara. Her research and writing focus on law and legality, war and conflict, human rights, and torture. She is the author of Courting Conflict: The Israeli Military Court System in the West Bank and Gaza (University of California Press, 2005) and Torture: A Sociology of Violence and Human Rights (Routledge, 2012). In addition to being a Co-Editor at Jadaliyya, she serves on the editorial committees of Middle East Report and Journal of Palestine Studies. She is currently working on a book about anti-torture lawyering in the United States. 

 

 

 

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