ARTICLE BY NELSON INSTITUTE DIRECTOR, GMU PROFESSOR, ASSERTS ISRAELI RIGHT TO SET BORDERS UNILATERALLY

July 5, 2006

HARRISONBURG—In an article published in the July-August issue of the journal Commentary, Dr. J. Peter Pham, director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs at James Madison University, and Professor Michael I. Krauss of George Mason University School of Law, argue that neither historical nor legal barriers stand in the way of unilateral action should Israel decide that it is in its “national interest to disentangle itself, as much as prudence requires, from the Palestinians and the territory in which they predominate.”

In their essay, entitled “Why Israel Is Free to Set Its Own Borders,” the professors that the traditional norms of international law actually give the Jewish state the best legal claim to the entirety of the territories which came under its jurisdiction after the Six Day War of 1967. However, “none of this is to suggest that Israel’s legal and historical claims to sovereignty in the West Bank require it to remain there. But neither is it required to consult either the Palestinian Arabs or the self-appointed representatives of the ‘international community’ if it decides to withdraw from some territory and determine its own borders.”

Founded in 1945, Commentary has been described as “ America’s premier monthly magazine of ideas, the publication that those who shape public opinion turn to first for in-depth analysis of politics, religion, foreign affairs, social policy, culture, and the arts, as well as for outstanding reviews of current books.”

The text of the essay by the two professors can be accessed online by clicking here.