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From the Global to the Local
Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh

Introduction With the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) having run a deficit almost since the start of its operations in 1950, the US’s decision – as UNRWA’s erstwhile primary funder – to cut its financial support for the Agency is having a significant impact both on UNRWA and over five million Palestinian refugees living across UNRWA’s five areas of operation in the Middle East: Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Gaza and the West Bank. This article explores UNRWA’s responses to this dramatic cut in funding; more specifically

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Israelis memorialising the Palestinian Nakba
Author: Ronit Lentin

The 1948 war that led to the creation of the State of Israel also resulted in the destruction of Palestinian society, when some 80 per cent of the Palestinians who lived in the major part of Palestine upon which Israel was established became refugees. Israelis call the 1948 war their ‘War of Independence’ and the Palestinians their ‘Nakba’, or catastrophe. After many years of Nakba denial, land appropriation, political discrimination against the Palestinians within Israel and the denial of rights to Palestinian refugees, in recent years the Nakba is beginning to penetrate Israeli public discourse. This book explores the construction of collective memory in Israeli society, where the memory of the trauma of the Holocaust and of Israel's war dead competes with the memory claims of the dispossessed Palestinians. Taking an auto-ethnographic approach, it makes a contribution to social memory studies through a critical evaluation of the co-memoration of the Palestinian Nakba by Israeli Jews. Against a background of the Israeli resistance movement, the book's central argument is that co-memorating the Nakba by Israeli Jews is motivated by an unresolved melancholia about the disappearance of Palestine and the dispossession of the Palestinians, a melancholia which shifts mourning from the lost object to the grieving subject. The book theorises Nakba co-memory as a politics of resistance, counterpoising co-memorative practices by internally displaced Israeli Palestinians with Israeli Jewish discourses of the Palestinian right of return, and questions whether return narratives by Israeli Jews are ultimately about Israeli Jewish self-healing.

Editor’s Introduction
Juliano Fiori

Fiddian-Qasmiyeh, on the impact on Palestinian refugees of US budget cuts under Donald Trump; José Luis Fiori, on the new security strategy of the US and the disavowal of liberal internationalism; David Rieff, on the legitimacy of humanitarian agencies in a changing political landscape; Mel Bunce, on humanitarian communications and ‘fake news’; Celso Amorim, on transformations in global governance and the influence of Southern states; Caroline Abu Sa’Da, on search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean; and Olivia Umurerwa Rutazibwa, on

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Joseph Heller

it possible to resettle the Palestinian refugees there. 28 As soon as the Eisenhower administration was sworn in, Israel realized it had lost its influence in the White House 29 and that the State Department would now determine policy. 30 The President told Abba Hillel Silver, an important Jewish lobbyist, that there was no way Israel would be given preference over the

in The United States, the Soviet Union and the Arab– Israeli conflict, 1948– 67
History of a divorce
Author: Paul Kelemen

This study examines how the diverse strands of the British left have interpreted the conflict in Palestine. From being overwhelmingly supportive of the Zionist movement’s effort to build a Jewish state in Palestine and welcoming Israel’s establishment the left, in the main, has become increasingly critical of Israel. The Labour Party, for much of its history, had portrayed Zionist settlement as a social democratic experiment that would benefit both Jews and Arabs. Its leaders turned a blind eye to the Zionist movement’s sectarian practices which through its trade union and agricultural co-operatives aimed to build an exclusively Jewish economy. The rise of fascism in Europe and the Holocaust reinforced the party’s support for Jewish state building in Palestine. The British Communist Party was by contrast critical of Zionism but in 1947, following the lead given by the Soviet Union, endorsed the United Nations’ partition of Palestine and subsequently ignored the plight of the Palestinian refugees. It was not until the rise of the new left, in the late 1960s, that Palestinian nationalist aspiration found a voice on the British left and began to command mainstream attention. The book examines the principal debates on the left over the Palestine/Israel conflict and the political realignment that they have helped to shape.

Superpower rivalry
Author: Joseph Heller

Four questions stand before the historian of the cold war and the Arab-Israeli conflict: 1) Did Israel and the US have a 'special relationship'? 2) Were Soviet-Israeli relations destined for failure from 1948? 3) Was the Arab-Israeli conflict insoluble because of the cold war or in spite of it? 4)Was detente between the superpowers the key to solving the Arab-Israeli conflict? Israel failed to get a security guarantee from the US because if it were granted ally status the Arab states would turn to the Soviets. Instead of a security guarantee Kennedy used the nebulous term 'special relationship', which did not bind America politically or militarily. Relations with the USSR looked promising at first, but the Zionist ideology of the Jewish state made it inevitable that relations with would worsen , since the Kremlin rejected the notion that Soviet Jews were by definition part of the Jewish nation, and therefore candidates for emigration to Israel. As for the Arabs, they were adamant that the Palestinian refugees return en mass, which meant the destruction of of Israel. No compromise suggested by the US was acceptable to to the Arabs , who were always supported by the USSR.The Soviets demanded detente cover not only the Arab states and Israel, but Turkey and Iran as well. Consequently the Middle East remained a no-man's-land between the superpowers' spheres of influence, inexorably paving the way for the wars in 1956 and 1967.

The case of Lebanon’s naturalised Palestinians
Hind Ghandour

is a process of naturalisation that is underpinned by notions of assimilation, integration and belonging to the Lebanese state, and has thus been opposed by many Palestinian refugees (Hanafi and Long 2010; Knudsen 2009; Meier 2010). According to Salih, ‘tawtin means being forced to accept another watan, another homeland, and this is unacceptable for Palestinians’ (Salih 2013, 83). Having the same root as the Arabic term watan (homeland), tawtin was regarded by Palestinians as a national category of membership that aimed to establish Lebanon as an (alternative

in The politics of identity
Place, space and discourse
Editors: Christine Agius and Dean Keep

Identity is often regarded as something that is possessed by individuals, states, and other agents. In this edited collection, identity is explored across a range of approaches and under-explored case studies with a view to making visible its fractured, contingent, and dynamic features. The book brings together themes of belonging and exclusion, identity formation and fragmentation. It also examines how identity functions in discourse, and the effects it produces, both materially and in ideational terms. Taking in case studies from Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, the various chapters interrogate identity through formal governing mechanisms, popular culture and place. These studies demonstrate the complex and fluid nature of identity and identity practices, as well as implications for theorising identity.

Paul Kelemen

Jewishoccupied territory.’1 The leader-writer expressed concern over these reports, a few of which appeared to suggest that if it was right for some 200,000 Jewish Displaced Persons in Europe to enter Palestine as immigrants then it was only right that the Palestinian refugees should be allowed to return. The Jewish Chronicle’s anxiety soon abated. The refugees remained in the camps and the British media’s interest in their fate all but disappeared for almost two decades. The earlier terrorist campaign by Zionist military groups which aimed at forcing the British to lift the

in The British left and Zionism
Ronit Lentin

fundamentally the discourse of the “national Jewish camp’” (Bronstein 2005a: 232–3). However, Bronstein acknowledges that ‘the Palestinians possess the memory that Zochrot is trying to promote’ and therefore Zochrot is dependent on cooperation with Palestinians who live in the country. Zochrot’s insistence that the Nakba is also the story of the Jews in Israel links with my argument, in Chapter 1, that ‘we’ are all living in the shadow of the 1948 Palestinian refugees. 160 Co-memory and melancholia A second problem – which I too am implicated in – is the construction of

in Co-memory and melancholia