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Violence in Nonviolent Action: Power Relations in Joint Activism in Israel and Palestine

Author: Anne DeJong

In: Journal of Resistance Studies, vol. 6 no. 2 (2020), pp.112-44., Vol 6, No 2, 2020, pp. 112-144

The article begins by describing the Sumud Freedom Camp in May 2019, where over 300 Palestinians, Israelis and international activists set up camp in the destroyed village of Sarura, with the aim of rebuilding it.  Despite raids b y the Israeli Defence Forces the rebuilding had some success.  The author as the title indicates queries the nature of power relations between the volunteers.  Her main example of unequal power relations (seen as form of structural violence) is, however, based on her analysis of a nonviolent protest at the Erez checkpoint into Gaza held in January 2008, promoted as a joint Palestinian-Israeli protest, but in fact only involving Israeli Arab and Jewish citizens (plus a few international participants), and planned and controlled by veteran Jewish Hebrew speaking activists.