The Case for Palestine

An International Law Perspective

The Case for Palestine

Book Pages: 360 Illustrations: Published: February 2005

Author: John Quigley

Law, Middle East Studies, Politics > International Relations

John Quigley brings a necessary international law perspective to bear on the seemingly intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict in this updated edition of his important book. Since 2000, the cycle of bloodshed and retribution has spiraled increasingly out of control. Quigley attributes the breakdown of negotiations in 2000 to Israel’s unwillingness to negotiate on the basis of principles of justice and law. He argues that throughout the last century, established tenets of international law—and particularly the right of self-determination—have been overlooked or ignored in favor of the Zionists and then the Israelis, to the detriment of the Palestinians.

In this volume, Quigley provides a thorough understanding of both sides of the conflict in the context of international law. He contends that the Palestinians have a stronger legal claim to Jerusalem than do the Israelis; that Palestinian refugees should be repatriated to areas including those within the borders of Israel; and that Israel should withdraw from the territory it occupied in 1967. As in his earlier volume, Quigley provides an extensively documented evaluation of the conflict over the last century, discussing the Zionist movement, the League of Nations’ decision to promote a Jewish homeland in Palestine, the 1948 war and creation of Israel, and Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Golan Heights during the 1967 war.


The Case for Palestine, in clear language and persuasive legal argument, draws the conclusion that [the Israel-Palestine conflict] is not unsolvable. . . . Quigley’s book is a dispassionate, objective review of the key legal principles and rights underlying the Palestine-Israel conflict. . . . A reader of this book should come away with the conclusion that a law-based framework may well be the single most important precondition for a lasting resolution of this ‘intractable’ conflict.” — Susan Akram, Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East

“This impressive book was written to further peace through better understanding of the Israeli/Palestinian situation. The book is highly readable. . . . [I]t will stun many of us who thought we understood much of this historical background. . . . The Case for Palestine is an important contribution to public understanding and should give readers the confidence to speak knowledgeably about this situation.” — Karin Brothers, Peace Magazine

“This is an exciting, provocative, and accurate study of the case for Palestine from a legal perspective. It should be read by everyone interested in the Arab-Israeli confiict and its resolution.” — A. J. Abraham, Journal of Third World Studies

"The Case for Palestine is a concise, well written book with invaluable summary of historical background for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. John Quigley’s dispassionate analysis and presentation of unbiased historical facts from credible sources overwhelmingly serves to educate and inform any reader. . . . [It] should be considered a must read for all those interested in a comprehensive overview of the legal issues surrounding this conflict and for all those interested in bringing about a long-lasting, durable peace and justice in the holy land." — Ghaleb Darabya, International Third World Studies Journal and Review

"One of the best book-length summaries currently available of the historical case for the establishment of an independent and viable Palestinian state. As a primer on what Palestinians understand the historical reality over the past century to have been, there is today no better guide than John Quigley's updated and revised version of his first edition. . . . This volume should be included on all academic reading lists dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian question. . . . Especially now, The Case for Palestine is worth the attention of US government officials engaged in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Quigley is to be commended for having compressed the work of a lifetime into this short, accessible, and copiously documented book." — Antony T. Sullivan, Law and Politics Book Review

"Quigley's notes and sources are useful." — Journal of Palestine Studies

“In this new edition of his classic Palestine and Israel, John Quigley succinctly yet thoroughly covers developments since the first Gulf War of 1991. He shows that by excluding the United Nations and insisting on bilateral peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, Washington diluted the principles of international law—to the ultimate detriment of the parties themselves and of the international community as a whole.” — Richard H. Curtiss, executive editor, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

“This masterful book comes at a most critical time in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and of American foreign policy towards the Middle East. It sets forth essential information on the international legal and human rights principles applicable to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and their relevance to the production of a comprehensive Middle East peace settlement between Israel and Palestine as well as between Israel and the surrounding Arab States. Indeed, there is no way anyone can even begin to comprehend the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and how to resolve it without developing a basic working knowledge of the principles of international law and human rights related thereto. By the end of this book, the reader should be in an excellent position to go out and work for peace with justice for all peoples and states in the Middle East.” — Professor Francis A. Boyle, legal adviser to the Palestinian delegation to the Middle East peace negotiations (1991–93) and to the Syrian delegation during the first round of the Middle East peace negotiations (1991)


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Author/Editor Bios Back to Top

John Quigley is President’s Club Professor in Law at Ohio State University. He is the author of several books, including Flight into the Maelstrom: Soviet Immigration to Israel and Middle East Peace and The Ruses for War: American Interventionism since World War II.

Table of Contents Back to Top
Acknowledgments ix

Preface to the Second Edition xi

Part One: Origins of the Zionist-Arab Conflict in Palestine

1. Zionist Settlement in Palestine: The British Connection 3

2. Zionist-Arab Conflict under the British Mandate: The Struggle for Land 14

3. Things Fall Apart: The Collapse of the British Mandate 23

4. A Portrait by Picasso: The UN Recommendation of Partition 32

5. Chaos on the Ground: Palestine in a Power Vacuum 40

6. Whose Land to Give? The UN Power over Palestine 47

Part Two: The 1948 War and the Establishment of Israel

7. Stun Guns and Barrel Bombs: The Realization of the Zionist Dream 57

8. Kaftans and Yarmulkes: The Claim to Ancient Title to Palestine 66

9. Arab vs. Zionist: War of Independence or War of Aggression? 73

10. Exodus: The Departure of the Palestine Arabs 82

11. To Justify a State: Israel as a Fact 87

Part Three: The Status of Arabs in Israel

12. The Real Conquest: The Repopulation of Palestine 97

13. The Present Are Absent: The Fate of the Arabs' Land 105

14. Hewers of Wood: Arab Commerce, Agriculture, and Labor 111

15. The National Institutions: The Legislation That Makes Israel Jewish 116

16. Holding the Soil: Access to Land 121

17. The Law of Ingathering: Nationality and Citizenship 126

18. Divide and Conquer: Arabs in Israel's Political System 131

19. Protecting Privilege: Arabs and Governmental Services 138

20. Some Are More Equal: Ethnic Distinctions in the Law of Israel 145

Part Four: The 1967 War, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip

21. No Peace: War Always on the Horizon 153

22. Mortal Danger? The 1967 Israel-Arab War 161

23. Déjà Vu: Israel's Control of the West Bank and Gaza 168

24. More Land: Confiscation and Settlements 174

25. More Hewers of Wood: Commerce, Agriculture, and Labor 182

26. By the Sword: The Palestine Arabs' Claim of a Right to Resist 189

27. Guns and Stones: Resistance by the Palestine Arabs to Occupation 198

Part Five: Resolution of the Palestine-Israel Conflict

28. Statehood in the Making: Palestine Declares Independence 209

29. Oslo via Madrid: A Turn to Peace? 215

30. Talks Fail: The Sword Replaces the Pen 220

31. Jerusalem and the Settlements: Who Should Stay? 225

32. The Displaced: Where Will They Go? 230

33. The Way Forward: Peace or Confrontation? 236

Notes 239

Index 333

Sales/Territorial Rights: World

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Additional InformationBack to Top
Paper ISBN: 978-0-8223-3539-9 / Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-3527-6
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