U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo greets an Israeli border soldier at Ben Gurion International Airport on March 22, 2019. JIM YOUNG/AFP via Getty Images.
This Week’s Guest: Eugene Kontorovich
Earlier this month U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a momentous announcement: the United States does not consider Israeli settlements in the West Bank to be illegal or illegitimate. The conventional wisdom is that Israeli building in the West Bank territories it captured in 1967 is a violation of international law. But after a process of months, the State Department has decided to return to an understanding once embraced by the Reagan administration, which is to recognize that not only is the conventional wisdom wrong but the status of Israeli building in the West Bank is first and foremost not a legal question but a political and diplomatic one.
In this podcast, Tikvah’s Jonathan Silver is joined by Eugene Kontorovich, one of the world’s foremost scholars on Israel and international law, a professor at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University, whose recent opinon piece on this subject, “Pompeo Busts the ‘Occupation’ Myth,” appeared in the Wall Street Journal. In this conversation, he both makes the case for the legality of Israeli settlements and explains how an erroneous and hypocritical interpretation of international law became unquestioned dogma.
Every Thursday, the Tikvah Podcast at Mosaic will bring to your car/earbuds/home stereo/Alexa the latest in our efforts to advance Jewish thought. For more on the new podcast, check out our inaugural post here.
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