The Jewish diaspora and the pro-Israel lobby

Authored by: Dov Waxman

The Routledge Handbook on the Israeli–Palestinian Conflict

Print publication date:  November  2012
Online publication date:  March  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415778626
eBook ISBN: 9780203079553
Adobe ISBN: 9781136160691

10.4324/9780203079553.ch30

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Abstract

In recent years, scholars, experts, and policy-makers have increasingly recognized the role, both positive and negative, that diaspora groups can play in violent ethno-national conflict. Although attention is often focused on the way in which members of diasporas can help to fuel and prolong such conflicts by providing money, arms, and political support to hard-line nationalists in their homelands (as has been the case, for example, with the Tamil and Kurdish diasporas in Sri Lanka and Turkey respectively), diaspora groups can also help promote peace processes and peace-building efforts (as occurred with the US-based Irish diaspora and the Northern Ireland peace process). In the case of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, both the Jewish and Palestinian diasporas have always been actively involved in the conflict. To understand fully the dynamics of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, therefore, it is essential to take this extra-territorial dimension into account. For many Jews and Palestinians living outside Israel, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, though the conflict may be far away, it is at the center of their political attention and activity.

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