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2012-03-26 The Impossible Geography of A Palestinian State.docx

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Western University
Geography 2142A/B
Mireya Folch- Serra

The Impossible Geography ofAPalestinian State The Geopolitics of Conflict Part 2 March 26, 2012 Final exam -essay on Palestinian military occupation needs to be based on geographical and historical facts -facts found in Atlases, maps, and the required academic readings -have freedom to believe whatever you want about the Israeli military occupation of Palestinian land and people but you must write facts, dates, maps, and statistics about the Palestinian people in the exam -ideological and mythical assumptions are OK as long as you do not mistake them for factual truths Examples of mythical, ideological and racist assumptions -“Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity” Ideological -“Palestinians deserve collective punishment for the deeds of extremists” Ideological -“Palestine was an empty land before the foundation of Israel” Mythical belief -“Palestinians cannot implement democracy” Ideological and racist -“Palestinian land was bought by Jewish people to absentee Palestinians” Ideological and mythical -“Palestinians reject peace offers by the Israeli state” Ideological / non proven -“Palestinian towns and cities did not exist before the foundation of Israel in 1948” Mythical -“Palestinians do not have a right to fight the military occupation because they are inferior people” Racist -There is no such thing as the Palestinian people at all  Ideological, mythical and racist Land redistribution 1948-1949 -On 15 May 1948, Israeli forces occupy 213 villages and expel more than 400,000 refugees before the end of the British mandate -Arab forces from neighbouring countries attack in December 1948 Israeli confiscates nearly 85% of the territory -Most land is taken from some 531 villages, cities, and tribes’land -531during the mandate before formation of Israel -regional towns, cities before formation of the state of Israel -Palestinians are thrown out or flee in fear of their lives Wars of 1967 and 1973 -Israel preventive attacks in 1967. Israel army occupies Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, Syria’s Golan Heights, and Jordan’s West Bank Displaced persons in 1967 -Palestinian found themselves refugees again in 1967 War -displaced people OSLO peace treaties from 1995 to 1999 -RED = Exclusive Palestinian Control -GREY = Palestinian Civilian/Administrative Control -GREEN = Israel’s control -PURPLE = Jerusalem -Israel and Palestine want as capital city of their state -more Israeli settler live on the west bank and Jerusalem In sum: -Israel took 78 percent of Palestine in 1948 and the remaining 22 percent in 1967 -Only this 22 percent of former Palestine is in question now -this 22 percent is called different names: -The Occupied Territories -The disputed land -Judea and Samaria -biblical region of territory Theoretical Interlude: Origins of the modern state based on the Treaty of Westphalia (1648) -Peace of Westphalia as a turning point in the evolution of the modern state -brought an end the Thirty Years War between Protestants and Catholics in 1948 Europe -it made the territorial state, rather than the individual monarch, the cornerstone of our modern political system The modern state henceforth is based on: 1. Territorial integrity as an imperative to become a state Need borders 2. No possibility f becoming a state without a bordered territory recognized by the world community 3. Territorial contiguity is the condition of the state The Palestinian putative state does not have territorial contiguity -How do Palestinian territories look-like? -As a perforated territory, a sieve, a colander -These perforations do not allow the implementation of a modern state with territorial contiguity *-whoever says otherwise is because they don’t look at the maps* Israelis in the West Bank -The IsraeliArmy starts settlements called “seeds” -perforations are made of settlements -Jewish settlements are called NAHLN (stream or creek) -“Ariel” largest settlement (at present is a city) in West Bank is decades old Perforations -Jewish settlements with about 500,000 settlers perforate the Palestine land -The Jewish settlers use special roads and buffer areas which increase the land holdings -protect settlements from Palestinians Checkpoints -for Palestinians because the Israelis have buffers, roads, etc. Israeli settlements in the Gaza strip -These were dismantled in 2005, after the unilateral withdrawal implemented by then prime minister Ariel Sharon -While Israeli civilians no longer live in Gaza, Israel’s military presence has never ended. Gaza is blockaded by land, sea, and air Ontario Map -The West Bank and Gaza strip as an inset in the Ontario map to compare territorial size -close to 4 million Palestinians live and till this land in and around Jewish settlers Amatrix of control in the West Bank -Over 100 Jewish settlements (towns and cities) -500,000 Jewish settlers (including East Jerus
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