On Friday 23rd December the UN passed a resolution demanding a stop to Israeli settlement in the occupied territories as, in a shock move, the US refused to veto the resolution. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exploded, calling it a 'declaration of war' (having recently been granted a $38 billion military aid package by the US), and Secretary of State John Kerry criticised Israel's approach to the peace process. But with Trump tweeting that Israel should 'stay strong' until his inauguration, progress still seems unlikely.
Verso presents a list of books from Israeli, Palestinian, and anti-imperialist authors, to explain the conflict and provide some perspectives on the future.
Bernard-Henri Lévy — alias BHL, alias Bernard, alias the white-shirted philosopher — was invited to the European Parliament on 27 September to take part in a conference entitled "The future of Jewish communities in Europe."
He made a fifteen-minute intervention, passing relatively unnoticed, during which this liberator of Libya tried to give an overview of the situation of the Jews of Europe and of the "new faces" of anti-Semitism.
As if it needed saying, BHL could not stop himself repeating the old refrain that "anti-Zionism is the new anti-Semitism," unscrupulously amalgamating the Palestine solidarity movement with the most abject far-Right forces.
In an appearance on KPFA’s Flashpoints, Yasmin Nair and Vijay Prashad, alongside other commentators, addressed the state’s role in the normalization of anti-LGBTQ violence, the co-optation of queer struggles, and contradictory media responses to the Orlando attack.
In honor of Black History Month, we bring you Robin D.G. Kelley’s essay “Yes, I said, ‘National Liberation’” from Letters to Palestine: Writers Respond To War And Occupation. Kelley reflects on the links between struggles for Palestinian self-determination and those for Black liberation in the U.S., and traces the ways in which Black radical conceptions of Palestine and Israel have changed over the last six decades.
“You can’t trust a big grip and a smile
And I slang rocks Palestinian style”
– “The Shipment,” Steal This Album by The Coup
For the past thirty-five years, “Free Palestine” has been etched into my political vocabulary. In the movement circles that nurtured and trained me, “Free Palestine” rolled off the tongue as easily as “Free South Africa,” “Free the Land,” “A Luta Continua,” “Power to the People,” and the ubiquitous “El Pueblo Unido Jamás Será Vencido!” I was a sophomore in college when Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982, in order to drive out the exiled Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Two years later, as a first-year graduate student and chair of UCLA’s African Activists Association, I invited representatives of the PLO to participate in our fifth annual conference on imperialism. We received hate mail and death threats from the Jewish Defense League, and the university administration leaned on us to withdraw the invitation. But we prevailed. I completed my doctoral dissertation in 1987, the first year of the First Intifada, and like most of my compatriots attributed Israel’s willingness to participate in the Oslo negotiations to Palestinian resistance. Although Oslo proved to be a disaster and a betrayal of the PLO’s founding principles, we saw the prospect of direct negotiations as a small step toward an elusive national liberation.