Stephen Zunes : Israel and Palestine


How the state Assembly tries to limit what I can teach
25 January 2014

In preparing my syllabus for my introductory course on the Middle East this semester, it gives me pause that the California Assembly is still on record declaring that discussing certain well-documented historic incidents in modern Middle Eastern history should “not be tolerated in the classroom.” This unprecedented attack on academic freedom came in the form of a resolution (HR 35), co-sponsored by 66 of the 88 Assembly members, which passed by a voice vote in 2012.


Attacks against anti-occupation activism increase
22 July 2013

A growing movement has emerged on college campus calling for divestment from companies that support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories that is part of broader international campaign initiated by Palestinian civil society for boycott, divestment and sanctions to pressure Israel to end its occupation of territories seized in the 1967 war.


Israel, Syria and the United States
13 May 2013

An op-ed piece published on Truthout.org about Israel’s attack against Syria on May 6th, 2013


Israel’s settlements outside official border flout international law
19 January 2013

In mid-December, Israeli officials approved plans for the construction of more than 2,600 new homes to be built on Givat Hamatos, a hill on the outskirts of Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem. This settlement would be the first major new Jewish neighborhood in Jerusalem outside of Israel’s internationally recognized borders since 1997, effectively completing the encirclement of […]


US policy on Gaza crisis rife with contradiction
19 December 2012

The Obama administration’s reaction to last month’s Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip is emblematic of the contradictions in its foreign policy seen throughout its first term.


U.S. policy at U.N. hurts prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace
7 December 2012

Up until the mid-20th century, Western attitudes regarding national freedom was that the independence of white Western nations was a given, but independence for nonwhite, non-Western nations could only be under conditions granted by the occupying powers.


Abetting the Carnage in Gaza
26 November 2012

The November 22 ceasefire between Israeli and Hamas forces is a huge relief for the civilian population on both sides—the primary victims of the conflict. But the Obama administration’s unconscionable decision the previous week to block a ceasefire effort by the UN Security Council not only resulted in additional civilian deaths but also serves as an indication that, despite the president owing his re-election to the hard work of his progressive base, his foreign policy will continue to lean to the right.


Can U.S. Citizens End Israel’s Legal Impunity?
20 November 2012

The great wish of the early Zionist leader Theodor Herzl was that Israel would be treated like “any other state.” Were that the case, there might be more rational and productive discourse regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which is particularly critical in light of Israel launching yet another devastating attack against civilian-populated areas of nearby Arab lands.


Democratic Leaders Undermine Israeli-Palestinian Peace and Their Own Procedures
7 September 2012

In a stunning violation of its own rules, the wishes of the majority of delegates at its national convention, and positions taken by the United Nations and virtually every country in the world, the Democratic Party leadership pushed through an amendment to its platform early during its proceedings on Wednesday, with barely half the delegates […]


California State Assembly Seeks to Stifle Debate on Israel
30 August 2012

The California State Assembly has just passed a bipartisan resolution (HR 35) by voice vote which constitutes a serious attack on academic freedom and the rights of students and faculty to raise awareness about human rights abuses by U.S.-backed governments. While purporting to put the legislature on record in opposition of anti-Semitism on state university campuses, it defines anti-Semitism so widely as to include legitimate political activities in opposition to Israeli government policies.