9. Key debates

Page last updated 25 Oct 2015


Disagreement about how political issues are framed is normal.  Different actors have different visions, issues of concern on which they wish to focus. It’s all part of the natural cut and thrust of politics and one can generally recognise the point of view of others, even where one’s own concerns are different.

There is a series of troubling issues and themes that recur in the debates about the origins of the Israel-Palestine conflict and its possible outcome. Some are more fact dependent (what actually did happen in the nakba?) than others (should we presume that criticism of Israel is likely to be antisemitic?).

Very often these debates are part of, but not reducible to, the hasbara (propaganda) war. So first we discuss the world of hasbara, the conscious attempt to influence/manipulate the debate by supporters of Israel and the huge resources made available for that. We then identify some of the key debates, which anyone concerned with the conflict is likely to encounter, and provide interesting and insightful contributions to these debates.



a) Setting the scene: the hasbara (propaganda) war
b) Is criticism of Israel antisemitic?

Singling out Israel
Is Israel an apartheid society?
BDS and antisemitism

c) Can you have a Jewish and democratic state?
d) What is Zionism today?
e) The nature of the nakba
f)) One state or two?
g) Is Hamas to blame? Is Gaza still occupied?
h) Right of return and law of return?
i) The role of the JNF



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