What Do We Talk About When We Talk About Palestine? Part 5: Colonialism

Illegal Israeli settlement in the West Bank; The Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem (photos credits: me!)

What is happening in East Jerusalem?

Or, rather, what has been happening in East Jerusalem?

Depending on your location, political interests, and what media you consume, you might have heard the name of Sheikh Jarrah.

If anything, you might have seen some hashtags at least, like #SaveSheikhJarrah.

Sheikh Jarrah is a neighbourhood of East Jerusalem and what is happening there gives me an (unfortunate) opportunity to further explore my own question:

What do we really talk about when we talk about Palestine?

In light of current events, today’s topic simply has to be colonialism.

It’s…strange to be using this word to describe something that we’re witnessing in the 21st century, I know.

Yet, just like with other concepts that have actual definitions, we shouldn’t be afraid to use them where these definitions fit.

In my episode, I:

  • summarise what’s happening in Sheikh Jarrah,
  • provide the context to East Jerusalem itself,
  • define several major concepts related to this episode, like settler colonialism
  • give examples of Israeli policies that happen to match those definitions,
  • inevitably, I also refer to my previous episodes (because…there are many!), using the topics explored in them as valuable prisms we can use to assess this situation,
  • I ask some broader questions related to Sheikh Jarrah,
  • I also mention the current (May 2021) violent attacks by Israeli forces on the Palestinian worshipers who gathered in Al Aqsa to pray and celebrate some of the holiest days of Ramadan.

This is one dense episode. I hope you find it valuable!


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