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Current Issue: Background on the Israel-Palestine Conflict

Resources for a better understanding of the crisis in the Middle East.

Introduction

Welcome to the research guide on the Israel-Palestine conflict. The purpose of this guide is to provide resources that will enable readers to gain a better understanding of the issues at stake and the history of the conflict. This guide was last updated 5 February 2024.

We have tried to select balanced and reasoned sources. The views and opinions of their authors do not necessarily reflect the views of the American University, the Washington College of Law, the Pence Law Library, or the author of this Guide.

Please be aware that this is a rapidly changing situation, and that as is often said, "truth is the first casualty of war." Misinformation and disinformation abound, and you need to read broadly, question your sources, and synthesize information from multiple perspectives.

 

Articles, blogs, & news releases

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council meets over Israel-GazaUnited Nations (Oct. 18, 2023), https://news.un.org/en/story/2023/10/1142517

Israel-Hamas War: News, analysis, and background on the ongoing conflict (tagged articles), Foreign Policy,  https://foreignpolicy.com/projects/israel-hamas-war

Israel-Hamas War (tagged articles), Foreign Affairshttps://www.foreignaffairs.com/tags/israel-hamas-war 

Alexandra Sharp & Rishi Iyengar, A Guide to Palestinian and Other Anti-Israel Factions, Foreign Policy (Oct. 10, 2023, 5:09 PM), https://foreignpolicy.com/2023/10/10/what-is-hamas-israel-war-palestine-fatah-hezbollah

Our response to the Israel-Gaza warDoctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), https://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/latest/our-response-israel-gaza-war

Public Statement: Scholars Warn of Potential Genocide in Gaza, Opinio Juris (Oct. 18, 2023), https://opiniojuris.org/2023/10/18/public-statement-scholars-warn-of-potential-genocide-in-gaza/

Bruce Hoffman, Israel's War on Hamas: What to Know, Council on Foreign Relations (Oct. 9, 2023, 2:08 PM), https://www.cfr.org/in-brief/israels-war-hamas-what-know

Vivek Bhatt, A Visible College, 2.0: Israel, Hamas, and the International Legal Community, Opinio Juris (Oct. 17, 2023), https://opiniojuris.org/2023/10/17/a-visible-college-2-0-israel-hamas-and-the-international-legal-community/

Janina Dill, Our Shared Horror, EJIL: Talk! (Oct. 13, 2023), https://www.ejiltalk.org/our-shared-horror/

Statement of ASIL President Gregory Shaffer Regarding the Attack on Israel, the Gaza War, and the Protection of Civilians, American Society of International Law (Oct. 13, 2023), https://www.asil.org/ASILStatement

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (tagged articles), Council on Foreign Relations,  https://www.cfr.org/israeli-palestinian-conflict

Anthony H. Cordesman, The War in Gaza and the Death of the Two-State Solution, Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) (Oct. 11, 2023), https://www.csis.org/analysis/war-gaza-and-death-two-state-solution

Reports from the Congressional Research Service

Israel and Hamas October 2023 Conflict: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), CRS Report R47754 (Oct. 13, 2023), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/R/R47754

Israel and Hamas: Major Conflict After Surprise Attacks, CRS Insight IN12262 (Oct. 10, 2023), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IN/IN12262

Israel: Background and U.S. Relations, CRS Report RL33476 (July 1, 2022), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/RL/RL33476

The Palestinians: Background and U.S. Relations, CRS Report RL34074 (Oct. 27, 2022), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/RL/RL34074

Lebanese Hezbollah, CRS In Focus IF10703, (Jan. 11, 2023), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IF/IF10703

U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel, CRS Report RL33222 (March 1, 2023), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/RL/RL33222

The Palestinians: Overview, Aid, and U.S. Policy Issues, CRS In Focus IF10644 (May 24, 2023), https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IF/IF10644

NGO websites

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)https://www.icrc.org

Human Rights Watchhttps://www.hrw.org/

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)https://www.doctorswithoutborders.org

Council on Foreign Relations. An American think tank specializing in U.S. foreign policy and international relations. https://www.cfr.org

Other resources

The Conversation. An independent, nonprofit news organization that publishes "trustworthy and informative articles written by academic experts." American University is a member partner. https://theconversation.com/us

Opinio Juris. A legal blog dedicated to the informed discussion of international law by and among academics, practitioners, and legal experts, in association with the International Commission of Jurists, https://opiniojuris.org/

EJIL: Talk! The blog of the European Journal of International Lawhttps://www.ejiltalk.org/

American Society of International Law (ASIL). The Society publishes the American Journal of International Law. https://www.asil.org

Foreign Policy. American news publication focused on global affairs, current events, and domestic and international policy. Good coverage of the Middle East. https://foreignpolicy.com/. Issues of the journal: Link for AU community members.

Foreign Affairs. A journal published by the Council on Foreign Relations that bills itself as "the leading forum for serious discussion of American foreign policy and global affairs." https://www.foreignaffairs.com.  Issues of the journal: Link for AU community members.

Just Security. An online forum for the "rigorous analysis of security, democracy, foreign policy, and rights." https://www.justsecurity.org

Intlawgrrls: Voices on International Law, Policy, Practice. From their mission statement: "IntLawGrrls aims to give voice to women scholars, lawyers, policymakers, leaders, activists, on issues related to international law, policy and practice, from arbitration to human rights to trade, among other topics of expertise.  We provide insights into current events in international law and policy as well as detailed commentary on specific issues."  https://ilg2.org

Middle East Policy. A peer-reviewed journal that regularly publishes articles on the Arab-Israeli conflict. Link for the AU community.

Journal of Palestine Studies. A peer-reviewed journal that regularly publishes articles on the Arab-Israeli conflict. Link for members of the AU community.

Resource List, UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studieshttps://www.international.ucla.edu/israel/article/270276