The Jerusalem, Essay Example
What seems to have motivated the Israelis to create the separation wall, the settlements in the occupied West Bank, and the expansion in East Jerusalem (formerly known as the Arab quarter)? What justifications are used for expansion?
There was already so much division among the people. The Jabareen article states this is because of ethnic conflict that had been going on for decades. Also, the Palestine region was mostly Arab. The “East Jerusalem 4” film states that the different settlements are always in court against each other and that the police often attack. One settler, Mr. Zuheir a-Rajabi said the police came to his house one day and handcuffed him in front of the children and then the police shot off tear gas bombs and the film shows people running in the neighborhood. These are some of the things that are a result of the wall but the tensions were there before they built the wall and the settlements.
Since the creation of the separation wall, suicide bombings have gone down significantly in Israel. What long-term dangers are there to Israel in the creation of the wall, and more settlements and expansion in East Jerusalem, based on the films here?
In the documentary “The Separating Wall”, some of the Israeli claims that the wall will help decrease suicide bombings but they do not realize that in pursuing a temporary solution, they are creating the ideal circumstances required to produce more suicide bombers. One of the reasons Israeli protestors gave behind their opposition was that the wall has simply separated Palestinian and Israeli neighbors who are previously co-living peacefully. The wall has also deteriorated the economic conditions of many Palestinians who have been forced to give up agriculture and have even lost jobs because they often do not reach work on time. The rising unemployment will further alienate young Palestinians and motivate them to fight against Israel, the primary reason behind their economic woes. The actions of Israeli military will also increase the probability that traumatized children grow up to be suicide bombers.
Another problem will be the declining international support for Israel as the videos show because in the age of social networking, citizen journalism has taken human rights causes to a whole new level. The wall doesn’t only hurt Palestinian economy but also makes it difficult for the two sides to engage in dialogue due to intense mistrust.
What is urban space like in these films? What is life like on the different side of the wall and division? Consider not only the ethnic/religious differences, but also the obvious social differences depicted in the films.
As shown in “The Separating Wall” film, urban spaces seem tense. People have to crawl over the wall to get to schools and medical care. They have to pass through check points also. They show a bus that had been blown up by terrorists because they need to complete the fence. Some residents are heard in the film saying their house is in a “prison” because it is behind the barrier, an 8-foot high concrete wall and fences that separate them from other settlements. There are village protests because they have lost land when the barriers were built. There is a lot of anger and hostility.
How does the wall, in particular, reshape lives for both Israelis and Palestinians?
It seems that the Palestinians get the bad end of the deal, according to the “East Jerusalem 3” film. They were forced, by the Jews, to sell them homes or their homes were broken into and their furniture taken or broken and their clothes and other belongings thrown into boxes or destroyed to make them relocate. A child says he won’t be able to play anymore in the neighborhood. One man says he will die if he has to leave his home because he feels like he would be a fish out of water. As for the Israelis, they seem settled in and feel safe that the military protects them from the Palestinians.
How has urban planning been used to help Israel gain control of East Jerusalem? How does this use of urban planning align with the use of urban planning we have studied historically? How is it different?
According to the Jabareen article, Israel uses urban planning in a negative way to gain control of East Jerusalem such as influencing continued conflict with Palestine to gain an advantage geographically and politically, which was made easier because of the fact that Jerusalem is a city deeply divided. Also, Jerusalem developed a master plan that was meant to establish control over the demographics and geography of Jersalem, but much of the plan was not legally authorized. This master plan was designed to keep Palestinians in East Jerusalem from planning in their immediate areas and urban planning meetings were conducted away from Palestinian neighborhoods. Palestinians were basically excluded from having any input in the urban planning of their own areas. The master plan also served to control the demographics of the Palestinian community by adopting dispersion of Jews and Palestinians. Israeli law states that the Palestinians in Jerusalem were classified as permanent residents instead of citizens. So urban planning was used to control demographics as well as geographical territories (Jabareen).
Historically, urban planning has been a positive thing for municipalities to improve things like infrastructure, spatial areas and to make environments for citizens better. The way Israel used urban planning to gain control and take over to exclude the Palestinians is opposite of this. But, there are some similarities in the fact that even though they had negative agendas, the work was still done to improve the areas.
How is this wall different from the Berlin Wall in terms of its aims? How is it similar?
The Berlin Wall separated West Berlin from East Berlin so this is how it is similar to the Separation Wall in Israel. Also it had guards and many of the people thought that it was shame to have the wall and that it was wrong, much like protesters of the Separation Wall. But if I remember correctly, I don’t see much of a difference between the purposes of both of these walls. They were both built to separate the “good” people from the “not so good” ones, in terms of class and status. It seems to me that the walls separated the poorer people from the well to do. The Jabareen article talks about division among the people and the political agenda of Israel to gain geographic and demographic control, so putting up the wall as a way to cause conflict and to control its urban planning policies as regard to the master plan that identifies the planning strategy.
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