How and when the separation policy was conceived

Erez Crossing. Photo: Olly Lambert, Flickr. CC BY 2.0

Erez Crossing. Photo: Olly Lambert, Flickr. CC BY 2.0

Every year the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) publishes the “Strategic Survey for Israel”, a collection of analytical essays about the political and security dilemmas Israel is likely to confront in the coming year. This year’s edition includes an essay by Anat Kurtz and Udi Dekel entitled “Israel and the Political Dead End – The Need for New Paradigms”, which touches on an issue that has been at the top of Gisha’s agenda over the past year – the separation policy.

Last year, when we published an info sheet on the separation policy, the policy itself was shrouded in mystery. Every once in a while, security officials could be heard using the need to “separate” or “differentiate”1 Gaza Strip from the West Bank as justification for the travel restrictions Israel imposes. Yet there was no evidence of a government resolution authorizing the policy or any official explanation about what it entailed. Nonetheless the policy is real and has serious consequences for the lives of Palestinian residents of both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

The essay by Kurtz and Dekel is the first we have come across that expressly addresses this policy and places it in a historical context. The authors claim that the separation policy was introduced before Hamas won a majority of seats in parliamentary elections in 2006 as part of an attempt to “advance the West Bank economically and thus show the Palestinian public that calm holds more promise than resistance…”

It is important to recall that many of the restrictions were imposed on Gaza long before 2005, like the sweeping ban on Gaza students taking up academic studies in the West Bank, which has been in effect since 2000. Freedom of movement for Gaza residents was increasingly restricted starting in the early 1990s and peaking between the summer of 2007 and the beginning of 2009.

According to Kurtz and Dekel, the rationale for “differentiation”, as they call it, was formulated almost eight years ago. It has been long enough for security and strategy experts to reassess the underlying rationale and ask – as Kurtz and Dekel imply – whether the attempt to apply indiscriminate pressure on the entire population in order to engineer public opinion has actually been successful. Of course, the outcome of the policy has no bearing on the question of whether or not it is legal. The answer to this question, Gisha maintains, has been no since day one and will continue to be no for as long as travel restrictions are imposed in order to advance political goals rather than to confront concrete and specific security threats.

The separation policy reflects a premise that has gained prominence over the past few years as negotiations are primarily aimed at resolving the question of who would control the West Bank. The Gaza Strip, if mentioned at all, is relegated to discussions about security. In their essay, Kurtz and Dekel describe in detail the factors that have led to the political stalemate between Israel and the Palestinians. One can agree or disagree with their analysis, but it does make it clear that the future of the political process and Israel’s policy toward the Gaza Strip are not separate issues. Even after years of separation, Gaza is still part of the political equation and it’s not going anywhere.

  1. We note that the word in Hebrew בידול can mean either “separation” or “differentiation”. We have seen the term used and the policy expressed in both senses of the word. Kurtz and Dekel primarily address the policy in the sense of differentiating or distinguishing between Gaza and the West Bank from an economic standpoint. []

For who does not understand the need or concept of resistance of Palestine, recommended read:

The History of Resistance – The Eagle of Palestine


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Photos #GazaUnderAttack Nov 21, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Nov 20, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Nov 19, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Nov 18, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Nov 17, 2012

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Photos #GazaUnderAttack Sept 29, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Sept 19, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Sept 10, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack – Sept 6, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Aug 5, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack July 12, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack June 23, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack June 1-22, 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack May 17, 2012

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Photos #GazaUnderAttack February 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack January 2012

Photos #GazaUnderAttack December 2011

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Oct & Nov 2011

Photos #GazaUnderAttack Aug-Sept 2011

PHOTOS | Israel’s Massacre Cast Lead on Gaza 2008-2009



Martyred By Israeli Occupation Attacks

انّا للہ و انّا الیه راجعون

May Allah Subhana wa Ta’ ala grant the Shuhada Jannatul Firdaus, and ease it for their families, loved ones and anyone around them. Allahumma Ameen ya Rabbil Alameen. ‘ Inna Lillahi wa ‘ Inna ‘ Ilayhi Raji’un, Allahu Akbar


* The list of shuhada does not display, the numerous victims of the zionist occupation which are undocumented by media. Nor it displays the victims of the “silent onslaught” due to restrictions of movement, ability to go to hospitals for treatment or life saving surgery, due to lack of medication because of the blockades and so on. For example: The Slow Motion Genocide by the Siege on Gaza only, killed 600 patients since Gaza got under Israeli Siege.

For an overview of All Israeli Massacres Palestinians go here

Neither does this list, display the avoidable mortality. A clear and statistical factual evidence, about the number of deaths due to indecent ruling by occupation forces. For even an occupier has obligations under International Laws, Geneva Convention and the Hague regulations, which it is neglecting. These circumstances, together with deliberate policies of the occupier to neglect and even deny every basic human right, severes avoidable mortality which is totally silenced by media or reporting organisations. While in the Holocaust, 1 on 6 Jewish people directly died of deliberate neglect, so if we believe the facts over 1 million due to avoidable mortality, neither should these same circumstances be ignores which are ongoing in Palestine. For this report displays a avoidable morality of at least 0,5 million Palestinians.

How many more dead corpses of Palestinians does the international community need to see in order to act? How many more cruelties and violations of Human Rights, Regulations and International Law will be needed to intervene so this ongoing warcrime is being stopped once and for all.

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