As published in the London Review of Books.
During the latest outbreak of violence in Gaza, Israeli security forces, using high-powered rifles and live ammunition, have killed forty Palestinians (and counting), and wounded more than five thousand. B’Tselem, a leading Israeli human rights group, Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders have all accused Israel’s government and its minister of defence, Avigdor Lieberman, of targeting reporters and mostly unarmed civilians.
Lieberman replied that there are ‘no innocent people’ in Hamas...
As published in Foreign Policy
On each side of Asia, Trumpian diplomacy is playing out in starkly different ways. U.S. President Donald Trump himself offered up the comparison as he dramatically juxtaposed his announcement of the United States’ withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal on May 8 with sharing the news that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would soon be landing in Pyongyang to finalize details of a Trump-Kim Jong Un summit.
It’s certainly possible to make the case that Trump’s wild threats have created diplomatic space. But Trump’s own me...
As published in Haaretz
We will probably never know the extent of responsibility Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu bears for the U.S. withdrawal, under President Trump, from the Iran nuclear deal.
U.S.- Iranian relations have certainly long been poisonous, independent of Israel. Congressional enthusiasm for the deal was always low and, within the GOP, support for it near non-existent.
Still, Netanyahu and the campaign he spearheaded certainly helped to create part of the backdrop to Trump‘s announcement; indeed, in his announcement, Trump gave Israel direct cred...
For three decades, Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization have stated their readiness to negotiate a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with the goal of achieving the two-state outcome. The United States has also accepted this goal and has played a role in trying to achieve that outcome. Unfortunately, every effort has descended into mutual recrimination and the possibility of a two-state peace has slipped further away.
Given the degree of disruption and destabilization in the Middle East during this new century, it is important to remember that a sustainable and mutua...
[Speech as prepared for delivery]
What I would like to suggest is, the quiet, the manageability of the Israeli-Palestinian situation covers important dynamics below the surface and to suggest that the Trump administration could play in some way, an unintended role in accelerating those dynamics.
So, I am going to look at five things:
What to make of this US administration on Israel-Palestine, where is the continuity, where is the change and what is driving it?
How that impacts Israeli dynamics.
How that impacts Palestinian dynamics.
The question whether “liberal Zionism” can survive the far right trends that now dominate Israel’s political life was raised forcefully in the New York Times
by its columnist Michelle Goldberg. It was prompted by Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which Goldberg described correctly as “another nail in the coffin of ‘liberal Zionism’.”
While the reactions to Trump’s initiative have not yet fully played out, much is already evident. To begin with, they have exposed the stunn...