From the Editors
[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Occupation, Intervention, and Law and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the O.I.L. Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each biweekly roundup to OIL@jadaliyya.com by Monday night of every other week]
"Israel Pounds Gaza Strip from Air and Sea," Al-Jazeera English
Al-Jazeera English provides an overview of the first five days of Israel's assault on the Gaza Strip, Hamas' response, the political responses on both sides, and Egypt's involvement in the conflict.
"Blogger is Dead After Being Arrested in Iran," UN Press Release
Sattar Beheshti, an Iranian who blogged about human rights and politics, has died while in detention by the Iranian government. Irinia Bokova, the Director-General of UNESCO, expresses concern with the circumstances of his death, particularly that Beheshti's body showed signs of violence, and calls for a full investigation.
"Gaza Crisis: Egyptians Back Under-Fire Palestinians," BBC News
President Mohammed Mursi has condemned Israel's Operation Pillar of Cloud, calling it "blatant aggression against humanity" and sending Prime Minister Hisham Qandil to visit and show solidarity with Gaza.
"YouTube Refuses to Yank Israeli Kill Video as Hamas Attacks Jerusalem," Noah Schachtman
Schachtman, of Wired''s Danger Room blog, reports on Israel's targeted killing of Ahmed al-Jabari and the fallout of the operation on the internet, including efforts by both the Israeli and Palestinian side to generate sympathy to their view of the conflict. Schachtman also reports on YouTube's refusal to remove an IDF-posted video of aerial footage of the assassination.
"Dunford Sees Some U.S. Forces in Afghanistan Post-Drawdown," Anne Gearan
Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, recently picked by the Obama Administration to succeed Gen. John R. Allen as the commander of US and NATO troops in Afghanistan, argued for keeping American forces and equipment in Afghanistan after the Administration's current exit date of 2014 in an "advisory role."
"Hamas finds greater support in a changed Middle East," Abigail Hauslohner
Hauslohner reports for The Washington Post that many Middle Eastern governments previously loathe to lend support to Hamas--including Egypt, Turkey, and Tunisia--have become a "new set of highly influential friends" to the group as violence in the Gaza Strip escalates.
"Mistaken Lull, Simple Errand, Death in Gaza," Judi Rudoren and Fares Akram
Rudoren and Akram of The New York Times interview the families of a number of victims of Israel's assault on Gaza and report on Al Shifa's efforts to treat the hundreds of Palestinians wounded and newfound status as a "place to show solidarity."
"I lost my daughters in Gaza last time. Surely the bloodshed has to end," Izzeldin Abuelaish
Abuelaish, a Palestinian doctor who lost three daughters in Operation Cast Lead, criticizes Israel's preparation for a possible ground invasion as "avoiding responsibility" rather than "self-defense", and writes that for both Israel and Hamas, "it's time to face reality: military means and violence will never put an end to this conflict."
"Reformatting Palestine," Max Ajl
Ajl of Jacobin Magazine breaks down the falsehoods behind Israel's stated pretext of attacking Gaza in the name of self-defense, concluding that the pretext is so flimsy given these falsehoods that Israel "doesn't even bother to pay-lip-service" to the idea of self-defense, instead openly admitting that it is a mere excuse to attack.
"The Petraeus Legacy: A Paramilitary CIA?," Jeremy Scahill
Scahill argues that far more troubling than departed CIA director David Petraeus' extramarital affair was his cultivation of a closer relationship between the CIA and the military's Joint Special Operations Command. Petraeus' real legacy, he writes, is one of a CIA that has "strayed from intelligence to paramilitary-type activities."
"Stop pretending the US is an uninvolved, helpless party in the Israeli assault on Gaza," Glenn Greenwald
Greenwald rejects the narrative of the United States as innocent bystander in the current violence in the Gaza Strip, writing that the Obama Administration has proved itself an enabler in the conflict through its "financial, military, and diplomatic" support for Israel.
"Did Israel provoke rockets from Gaza to pressure Palestinians to back off UN bid?," Annie Robbins
Robbins of Mondoweiss argues that, given Israeli's history of aggression in Gaza, the timing of its recent assault on Gaza, and a number of reports from inside the Netanyahu government.
"In Cuba: Justice in Gitmo and Across the Fence," Kathleen Doty
Kathleen Doty of IntLawGrrls writes of Camp Justice at Guantanamo Bay and the military commission trials of alleged 9/11 accomplices held there, writing that the slow, "semi-secret," and untested nature of the trials leaves the degree to which they serve justice in doubt.
"Another Superfluous War," Uri Avnery
Avnery, a peace activist with Gush Shalom, writes in Counterpunch that Israel's recent attack in the Gaza Strip is unlikely to change Hamas' recent steady rise in political clout or advance the overall Palestinian conflict towards a long-term solution. Avnery advocates instead for talks between Hamas and the Israeli government and the establishment of a long-term ceasefire.
"Damn right, George Bush should face criminal proceedings for waterboarding," Katherine Gallagher
Gallagher writes in The Guardian that countries such as Canada must investigate and prosecute former President George W. Bush and other members of his administration behind its policy of torture in Guantanamo Bay and various "black sites" if the UN convention against torture have any meaning.
"How Israel Shattered Gaza Truce Leading to Escalating Death and Tragedy: A Timeline," Ali Abunimah
Abunimah, writing for The Electronic Intifada, rejects both the narrative of Israel acting in self-defense and the narrative that it is impossible to know which side started the recent escalation in violence. Abunimah presents a timeline of news reports on Israeli military actions and data on rocket fire from Gaza that reveals a calm and effective truce, shattered by Israel in their assassination of Ahmed al-Jabari.
"Refusing the Elections War," Sarah Anne Minkin
Minkin writes on The Daily Beast's Open Zion blog of four feminist groups in Israel who have placed a prominent ad in Haaretz noting their refusal of "war and the spilling of blood" and "the wave of hatred and incitement against the residents of Gaza." The ad, Minkin notes, uses the plural feminine form of "refuse", allowing the groups to simultaneously protest the invasion and the hegemonic, patriarchal culture of the Israeli military.
"Appalled by the Assumptions of the Online 'Tell Me How This Ends' Game," Kevin Jon Heller
Heller criticizes a game created by the Truman National Security Project designed to simulate a President of the United States' options responding to an Iranian nuclear threat as unrealistic, requiring its players to reject additional diplomacy as well as "justified skepticism about Iran's intentions".
"What if Powerful Palestinians Were Bombing Weak Israelis?," Stephen Walt
Walt attempts to illustrate the unjust nature of Israel's assault on the Gaza strip by describing the events behind it as if they had occurred against the backdrop of a hypothetical history in which the Palestinians won the Six-Day War, leaving a small enclave of Jewish citizens to remain in Gaza and the West Bank. Walt concludes that not only would such a scenario remain unjust, but few Americans would support "Palestine" in this scenario acting as Israel has recently.
"Israel Considers Any Palestinian Infrastructure That Can Be Connected to Hamas to Be ‘Terrorist,’" Kevin Gosztola
Writing for FireDogLake, Gosztola examines the Netanyahu government's assertion that Hamas "makes no distinction between its terrorist military machine and the government structure," writing that Israel uses this concept to justify bombing virtually any part of Gaza and killing almost anyone in the process of doing so; Gozstola discusses the legal implications of such a policy and the Goldstone Report's criticisms thereof.
"Afghanistan in 2012: Executive Summary," The Asia Foundation
The Asia Foundation presents the findings of a public opinion survey of Afghanistan, unprecedented in size. Though many high-risk areas go admittedly potentially underrepresented, notable findings of the sample include the falling levels of sympathy for armed opposition groups and an apparent rise in confidence in the ability of the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police to function without the assistance of foreign troops.
"Assessing Bahrain’s Implementation of the BICI Report," Project on Middle East Democracy
POMED revisits, a year after its release, the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry's report and recommendations for the Bahraini government to take in order to curb human rights violations, torture, and undemocratic practices. POMED finds that the government has implemented three of the report's twenty-six recommendations, and none of the report's six recommendations deemed the "most important" steps.
"Transnational Judicial Dialogue: Concept, Method, Extent and Effects;" 21-22 June 2013; Oslo, Norway; Respond to call for papers here.
"International Graduate Legal Research Conference 2013;" 8-9 April 2013; London, United Kingdom; Respond to call for papers here.
"Colonial Experiments in Gaza," Samera Esmeir
"Mowing the Lawn in Gaza," Sinan Antoon
"The Politics of Trains", Pascale Ghazaleh, Hesham Sallam, Adel Iskandar, Mouin Rabbani, and Sherene Seikaly
"Bibi's First War," Mouin Rabbani
"Israeli Aggression in the Gaza Strip: In Pictures," Mouin Rabban and Michelle Woodward
"Two Steps Back: How HR 35 Fails to Protect California Students," Samantha Brotman and Ed Gaier
"The Agonies of Susan Rice: Gaza and the Negroponte Doctrine," Vijay Prashad
"Timeline: Israel's Latest Escalation in Gaza," Jadaliyya Reports
"Counting Calories and Making Lemonade in Gaza," Sherene Seikaly
"Conditions on Aid and the Politics of Development," Rena Zuabi
"Putting Palestine on the Map," Vijay Prashad
"Palestinian Youth Statement from Lebanon," Jadaliyya Reports
"New Texts Out Now: Norman Finkelstein, Knowing Too Much," Norman G. Finkelstein
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Breaking! Chancellor Wise to Forward Salaita Appointment to Trustees. Read two explanations here: http://t.co/kuKnXOYS5p via @CoreyRobin
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Call for Submissions: Rhonda A. Saad Prize for Best Graduate Paper in Modern and Contemporary Arab Art http://t.co/aHY0mnUmdj
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