A new Israeli military “Order regarding Prevention of Infiltration”, Order no.1650 of 2009, took effect on 13 April 2010, six months after being signed by the Israeli Commander of IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) in the “Judea and Samaria Area”.1 It is an amendment to a previously enforced Order no. 329 of 1969,2 almost as old as the occupation itself.3 Leading daily newspapers reported the alarming news and many International, Israeli and Palestinian human rights organizations protested. A Palestinian Authority official talked about “Apartheid” while an Israeli Military officer claimed that “[the amendment] makes it easier for people without the right paperwork to appeal.”4 The objective of this paper is to analyze this military order in the light of older ones, in order to investigate how this new order fits within the same old Israeli occupation policy: maximizing the control of (Palestinian) land and minimizing the number of (Palestinian) people. In fact, despite the many changes introduced by military orders throughout more than four decades of occupation, this overarching policy goes crescendo since 1967. Following Oslo Accords, which did not put an end to the occupation, such policies intensified This paper constitutes a critique to law as a tool of social control whenever motivated and accompanied by racist and colonial policies. Such policies render Palestinians’ dreams of a (viable and connected) state, within historical Palestine and side by side Israel, impossible. Such a critique is possible only if one admits that legality, as a political ideal, is intrinsically related to freedom and equality. Otherwise, legality is converted to legalism. The rule by and through law – like enactments whenever disconnected from the two values of legality convert law to a monster, often distrusted, feared and resisted by those who endure its burden.
Khalil, Asem. Converting Palestinians into ‘Infiltrators’ in Their Own Home Country: A New Military Order and Same Old Policy, (April 22, 2010).
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