New Article: Burton, Beijing’s Shift in Relation to the Arab-Israeli Conflict

Burton, Guy. “Explaining Beijing’s Shift from Active to Passive Engagement in Relation to the Arab-Israeli Conflict.” Sociology of Islam 4.2 (2016): 93-112.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/22131418-00402001

 

Extract

As a ‘rising power’, China is expected to play a greater global role. But current Chinese involvement in the long-running and internationalised Arab-Israeli conflict is limited. How to explain this? What does it suggest about China’s regional and global role? Studying Beijing’s involvement since the 1950s, I note Chinese military assistance to the Palestinians during the 1960s-70s and strong criticism of Israel. But from the 1980s Beijing adopted a more diplomatic approach and endorsed the two-state solution. The change was due to China’s broader regional and international relations. During the Cold War Beijing’s ‘active’ pro-Palestinian stance was associated with being ‘outside’ the superpower-dominated international system. By the end of the Cold War Beijing was ‘inside’ the international system and increasingly integrated into the global economy. Commercial considerations trumped political ones, emphasising diplomacy. This suggests China’s exercise of global power may be more nuanced and less overt than otherwise assumed.

 

 

 

New Article: Orkaby, The 1964 Israeli Airlift to Yemen and the Expansion of Weapons

Orkaby, Asher. “The 1964 Israeli Airlift to Yemen and the Expansion of Weapons Diplomacy.” Diplomacy & Statecraft 26.4 (2015): 659-77.

 

URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09592296.2015.1096691

 

Abstract

Based on oral history accounts of surviving members of Israel’s first International Squadron and organisers of the military airlift to Yemen in 1964, this analysis examines the origins of the squadron, its mission to Yemen, and its impact on Israeli foreign policy in Africa. The founding of the International Squadron in 1963 incorporated the Boeing 377 Stratocruiser into the Israeli air force and gave the military and Foreign Ministry the country’s first long-distance transport capability. The initial successful military airlift to Yemen in May 1964 opened the possibility for additional clandestine military aid missions to sub-Saharan Africa and Kurdistan and marked the beginning of an era of Israeli “weapons diplomacy.” The Squadron’s incorporation of more advanced transport planes during the 1970s presented the Foreign Ministry with the capability of reaching Latin America and Asia, an essential factor in Israel’s expanding global arms market and later humanitarian missions.

 

 

 

New Book: Yacobi, Israel and Africa

Yacobi, Haim. Israel and Africa. A Genealogy of Moral Geography, Routledge Studies in Middle Eastern Geography. New York: Routledge, 2015.

 

9781138902374

 

Through a genealogical investigation of the relationships between Israel and Africa, this book sheds light on the processes of nationalism, development and modernization, exploring Africa’s role as an instrument in the constant re-shaping of Zionism. Through looking at “Israel in Africa” as well as “Africa in Israel”, it provides insightful analysis on the demarcation of Israel’s ethnic boundaries and identity formation as well as proposing the different practices, from architectural influences to the arms trade, that have formed the geopolitical concept of “Africa”. It is through these practices that Israel reproduces its internal racial and ethnic boundaries and spaces, contributing to its geographical imagination as detached not solely from the Middle East but also from its African connections.

This book would be of interest to students and scholars of Middle East and Jewish Studies, as well as Post-colonial Studies, Geography and Architectural History.

 

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction: Family Album

Part One: Israel in Africa
Chapter 1: Africa’s Decade
Chapter 2: The Architecture of Foreign Policy

Part Two: Africa in Israel
Chapter 3: Consuming, Reading, Imagining
Chapter 4: North Africa in Israel
Chapter 5: The Racialization of Space

Part Three: Israel in Africa II
Chapter 6: Back to Africa

Conclusion

Haim Yacobi is a Senior Lecturer, Department of Politics and Government, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel.

 

 

New Article: Marandola, Implications of the Naval Vessel Transfer Act of 2008 on U.S.-Israeli Relations

Marandola, Marissa L. “More Money, More Problems: A Look at the Implications of the Naval Vessel Transfer Act of 2008, Pub. L. No. 110-429, Sec. 201, 122 Stat. 4842 (2008) on U.S.-Israeli Relations.” Suffolk Transnational Law Review 38 (2015): 93-139.

 
URL: http://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/sujtnlr38&div=8

 
Excerpt

This note examines whether the United States, despite being legally bound to comply with Israel’s military needs pursuant to U.S. Congressional legislation passed in 2008, should continue to grant considerable foreign military financing (FMF) amounts to Israel, even though these appropriations undermine the United States’ self-interests. Part II explores the precedential special relationship between the United States and Israel and financial extensions of that relationship. Part III discusses current global affairs, Israel’s qualitative military edge (QME) in the Middle East region, and Israel’s recent request for future guaranteed U.S. FMF for purposes of maintaining Israeli QME. Israel is relying on U.S. legislation that formally recognizes U.S. commitment to maintaining Israel’s QME in order to support compliance with Israel’s request. Part IV argues that by passing the Naval Vessel Transfer Act of 2008, Pub. L. No. 110-429, § 201, 122 Stat. 4842 (2008) (The Act), the United States made it more difficult for themselves to make sound, independent decisions regarding future FMF amounts to Israel. Part IV further evidences the burdens The Act’s obligatory nature places on the United States through changing political, economic, and international security and strategic climates, and makes recommendations to counteract The Act’s burdens. Finally, Part V concludes that the United States should continue appropriating military aid and FMF to Israel because it is an integral part of the countries’ relationship, but do so more prudently, so as to strike a balance between individual U.S. and Israeli needs.