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O.I.L. Media Roundup (10 December)

[Syrian refugee camp on theTurkish border for displaced people. Image by Voice of America News via Wikimedia Commons.] [Syrian refugee camp on theTurkish border for displaced people. Image by Voice of America News via Wikimedia Commons.]

[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 by Monday night of every other week.] 

Israel and Palestine

Israel: Negev Bedouins' "Day of Rage" Over Resettlement Plan, BBC News
Thousands of Palestinians have been protesting in the Negev, Haifa, Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza over an Israeli plan to force Bedouin Arabs out of the Negev.

Palestinian Activism Grows at US Universities, Toshio Meronek
Al-Jazeera English reports on the endorsement of the National Council of the American Studies Association of a boycott condemning the Israeli government for its treatment of Palestinians, among other developing issues of pro-Palestinian protest and boycott in US academia.

Land Theft in the Jordan Valley, Uri Avnery
Avnery, an Israeli activist and writer, mocks the notion of a peace process taking place against the backdrop of Israeli plans to remove Bedouin Arabs from the Negev in Counterpunch

Is Israel Already Reaping Rewards from Iran Deal at Palestinian Expense?, Ali Abunimah
Abunimah suggests that as a consequence of its interim nuclear deal with Iran, the US may move to appease Israeli anger over the deal by making concessions to Israel at the expense of Palestinian life and livelihood.

UN Inspectors Visit Iranian Site Linked to Nuclear Program, Reuters
Iran, as part of its offer to allow its nuclear program greater scrutiny, has permitted UN inspectors to visit a nuclear plant 120 miles south of Tehran.

Detention & Guantánamo Bay

William Hague Letter Brings Hope to Shaker Amer in Guantánamo, Mark Townsend
A letter from UK Defense Minister William Hague to Guantánamo detainee and UK resident Shaker Amer suggests that the British government is working to secure the release of Amer and that a new  hunger strike protest has begun among Guantánamo detainees.

Bahraini Activist Nabeel Rajab Denied Early Release, BBC News
A Bahraini court has refused the early release of human rights activist Nabeel Rajab, rejecting arguments that Rajab has already served three-quarters of a two-year sentence.

Military Retracts Guantánamo PTSD Claim, Carol Rosenberg
The US military has argued no statistics support a claim made by Army Col. John V. Bogdan on a 17 November episode of 60 Minutes that guards at Guantánamo Bay suffer PTSD at rates doubling those of combat troops.

A Bad Decision at Guantanamo, The New York Times Editorial Board
The Times releases an editorial suggesting the United States does little to improve its reputation of flouting the rule of law in forcibly repatriating former Guantánamo detainees to their countries of origin against their will.

Extradited British Terror Suspects to Plead Guilty in US, Press Association
Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan, two British nationals accused of attempting to raise money for terror groups in Afghanistan, plan to plea guilty in a US court after battling their extradition to the US from the UK. 

Law and the "War on Terror"

Propaganda Fails in Afghanistan, Report Says, Tom Vanden Brook
A series of Pentagon reports demonstrate that programs designed to serve as pro-US propaganda in Afghanistan are often very expensive and their impact on the ground is unclear.

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Arrives in Pakistan for Talks, Associated Press
US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has met with the new Pakistani military chief General Raheel Sharif and will meet with PM Nawaz Sharif during a visit to Pakistan that has been dogged by protests of the CIA armed drone program in Pakistan.

The OTP's Remarkable Slow-Walking of the Afghanistan Examination, Kevin Jon Heller
Heller argues only one "plausible answer" explains the slow investigation by the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court of war crimes committed in Afghanistan : a desire to avoid angering the Western powers at war there.

Guest Post: A Review of the Special Rapporteur Reports Regarding "Drones" and the Use of Lethal Force, Ian Scott Henderson, Jo Brick
Henderson and Brick issue a report on Just Security surveying common themes and legal paradigms in the
reports on the use of drones issued by Ben Emmerson, UN Special Rapporteur regarding drones and the use of lethal force.

Obama: My Overseas Spying Not Constrained by the Law I Passed as Senator, Marcy Wheeler
Wheeler argues President Obama makes a number of missteps in a recent comment defending the NSA, taking particular issue with a remark that the NSA is "not constrained by laws" overseas.

Armed Conflict in Syria

US to Destroy Syrian Arms at Sea, as Other Nations Balk, Naftali Bendavid
Following unsuccessful efforts to persuade other nations to destroy the most dangerous chemical weapons of the Syrian government, the US has controversially agreed to destroy the arms at sea.

Syria Crisis: Zaatari Refugee Camp Manager Answers Readers' Questions, Maeve Shearlaw
The Guardian holds a live Q&A session with Kilian Kleinschmidt, director of the Zaatari Refugee Camp home to thousands of displaced Syrians in Jordan.  

The Syrian War and "Sectarianism," Nick Danforth, Graham Pitts
Dissent features an argument from Danforth and Pitts suggesting that insisting on the non-sectarian nature of conflict in Syria is not an attempt to deny the existence of religious hatred on Syria so much as imply that sectarian violence is the result, "rather than the cause" of a number of political and economic developments.


Governing Intelligence: Transnational Threats and the National Security State; 2 May 2014; Stanford Law School; Submit proposals here (email)

The Joint IHL Forum; 16 December 2013; Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, Israel; more details here.

On Jadaliyya

Displaced Again: Palestinian Refugees from Syria, Jadaliyya Reports

New Paradigms in Israel and Palestine: Interview with Noura Erakat and Leila Farsaikh, Frank Barat

Toward an Ethic of Legitimate Dissent: Academic Boycott at the American Studies Association, Noura Erakat

Legal Agenda Launches English Online Edition, Legal Agenda

Tel Aviv-Jaffa’s “City for All” – Is There Emancipatory Potential in Israeli Municipal Politics?: An Interview with Matan Kaminer, Max Ajl

O.I.L. Monthly Edition (November 2013), O.I.L. Editors

Twenty Years of Talks: Keeping Palestine Occupied, Visualizing Palestine

American Studies Association Resolution on Academic Boycott of Israel, Jadaliyya Reports

Israel Wins in Mexico, Luz Gómez

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