Military (Non-)Policing in the Occupied Territories

in Israel Studies Review
Author: Nir Gazit 1
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  • 1 Dept. of Behavioral Sciences, Ruppin Academic Center, Israel nirgazit2@gmail.com
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Abstract

Since 1967, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have been engaged in various military missions in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including occasional high-intensity fighting and counter-insurgency, as well as civilian duties, such as administration and policing. While existing literature emphasizes the organizational and professional burden this combination of duties places on the military, the actual forces that shape soldiers’ policing practices in the field remain largely unexamined. The present article offers a micro-sociological examination of the patterns of military policing implemented by Israeli soldiers in the West Bank. It explores the social and political forces that shape soldiers’ ‘logics of action’ and demonstrates the reciprocal relations between the IDF's disparate modes of policing of Jewish settlers and Palestinians. Three clusters of factors shape these interrelations: the relationships between soldiers and settlers, the blurring between ‘security’ and ‘civilian’ missions, and situational variables. The research for this article was conducted between 2004 and 2018.

Contributor Notes

NIR GAZIT is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Anthropology in the Department of Behavioral Sciences at the Ruppin Academic Center. His research interests include governance and sovereignty, political violence, civil-military relations, and border zones. E-mail: nirgazit2@gmail.com

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