In this episode of UpFront, Mehdi Hasan speaks to PLO Secretary-General Saeb Erekat about the escalating violence in Israel and Palestine, what the Palestinian Authority (PA) is doing to protect its people, and the failed peace process.
Hasan also challenges Israel’s argument that it is not occupying Gaza, and Glenn Greenwald and Christine Fair debate the US drone programme.
The Headliner: Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat
More than 50 Palestinians and eight Israelis have been killed in renewed violence in Israel and Palestine.
The latest unrest was triggered by Israel’s increased restrictions on Palestinian access to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and visits to the site by Jewish groups last month.
Since then, stabbings, shootings and clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces have erupted throughout the occupied territories, including the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza. Palestinians are continuing to protest restrictions on movement, attacks by settlers and failed peace negotiations.
As violence continues to escalate, is the Palestinian Authority failing its people? And will a ‘third intifada’ help the Palestinian cause?
In this week’s Headliner, Mehdi Hasan asks PLO Secretary-General Saeb Erekat what the PA is doing to protect Palestinians.
Reality Check: Gaza is still occupied
Israel says it no longer occupies Gaza after disengaging from the strip of land in 2005.
But Palestinians, international organisations, human rights groups and governments, including the United States, argue Gaza is still occupied.
In the Reality Check, Mehdi Hasan challenges Israel’s narrative, arguing the country still controls Gaza’s borders, airspace and territorial waters. He also points to the fact Israel controls the population register, meaning the government defines who is and who is not a resident of Gaza.
The Arena: Do drone strikes create more terrorists than they kill?
Nearly 90 percent of people killed by US drone strikes in Afghanistanduring a five-month period were civilians. That’s according to an investigation of leaked documents, published by The Intercept, called, The Drone Papers.
US President Barack Obama said in May 2013, “Before any strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured.” But, the cache of secret documents suggest strikes are often carried out based on thin evidence and the majority of those killed are not the intended targets.
The government defends the programme, saying it is needed to “act against terrorists who pose a continuing and imminent threat to the American people”, but some, including Robert Grenier, the former head of CIA counterterrorism center, argue the US is “creating more enemies than [it is] removing from the battlefield”.
So, do drone strikes create more terrorists than they kill? In this week’s Arena, Glenn Greenwald, co-founder of The Intercept, debates Georgetown University Associate Professor Christine Fair.