13 pages
Word Count
3076 words
Course Code

Middle Eastern Conflict

February 21, 2016
Separation Barrier
Separation Barrier; Safety Measure or
Deprivation of People?
Jessica de Veer
Separation Barrier
After spending five weeks in Israel, everyone I knew wanted to know how
my trip was and they always started it off with the same question: “Did you feel
safe?”. Of-course I felt safe. How could you feel unsafe surrounded by an
enormous wall protecting Israel? But there is more to the wall than what most
people know, then what I knew. When you’re standing in front of this enormous
continuous block of concrete covered with large barbed wire spirals and electric
fencing, you start to wonder how severe the situation must be to have come to
the decision of protecting the country with these barriers, but then, you are struck
by so many markings on the walls that overpower the intimidation of the barbed
wire and electric fencing. The graffiti on the walls speaks of the pain on both
sides, and as separated, as they may seem, they ultimately come together as
one voice. But is this wall really protecting the people of Israel or is it more of a
mechanism to deprive Palestinians?
When discussing the separation barrier, or the “wall” as many call it in
Israel, according to Michel Warschawski it is “a pivotal concept in the life of every
Israeli: it is a formative element in our collective life, it defines our horizons,
serves as the boundary line between threat and the feeling of safety and
between enemies and brothers” (Warschawski, 2002), and although many
Israelis share this opinion of the wall, there are always exceptions. Safety is an
essential point in the daily lives of the Israeli people and therefore they have
Separation Barrier
always wanted to direct the Israeli-Palestinian conflict without international
interference when talking about their borders and although the global community
involves themselves, Israel always has the last words. This responsibility has
been taken since the time of David Ben-Gurion who encouraged “self-reliance
based on his faith that the Jewish people would shape their own destiny and
capacity for self-defense (Shlaim, 2001: 97), therefore, Israel has pursued to
avoid relying on security from arbitrators. On the other hand, Israel has
contemplated liaising with the United States, United Nations, the European
Union and, Russia. An example of this would be the “road map” proposed in a
speech by then president George W. Bush in 2002. The main factors of this
“road map” are that “Palestinian Authority reform and abandonment of the use of

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