Rashid Khalidi

Rashid Khalidi, the Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia, is the author of The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood.

After Arafat: Palestine’s options

Rashid Khalidi, 3 February 2005

The autumn of the patriarch is finally over. These are difficult times for the Palestinians, and Yasser Arafat’s death presents them with a daunting challenge. The first of their difficulties is the long-standing fragmentation of the Palestinian people. Nearly five million still live in some part of what was once Mandate Palestine, and can be divided into four distinct groups. More than...

In early June, the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip (and the Golan Heights) entered its 40th year.* The Palestinians who inhabit these territories have lived under Israeli military occupation for two full generations; before that, between 1948 and 1967, they lived under Jordanian and Egyptian regimes. The overwhelming majority of this population of more than...

Shared Irresponsibility: Fatah and Hamas

Rashid Khalidi, 16 August 2007

Even when they have been politically united, the Palestinians have faced an uphill struggle to achieve any of their national objectives, but their prospects when they have been politically divided have been even grimmer. The period from the 1960s to the early 1980s when the PLO, dominated by Fatah, was universally recognised as representing the Palestinians, was one of repeated defeats, but...

From The Blog
3 June 2010

It has become a pattern. Israel takes shocking action, as in Lebanon in 2006 where it killed 1000, Gaza in 2008-9 where 1400 people died (mostly civilians in both cases), and now its act of state terrorism on the high seas against a humanitarian mission to relieve the siege of Gaza. Then Israeli leaders complain that those who criticise their actions are 'delegitimising' the state of Israel. A real friend of Israel would tell its leaders that it is mainly their own actions that are undermining Israel’s standing in the world – actions that are not legitimate by any standard of international law, morality or even common sense. The deeper story here is the illegal blockade by Israel (with the connivance of Egypt) of the Gaza Strip and its 1.5 million inhabitants who live in the world’s largest open-air prison.

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