On Saturday, 27 December 2008, Israel began its onslaught against the 1.5 million besieged and imprisoned Palestinians in the Gaza Strip — one of the most densely populated areas in the world. One week later, on 3 January, Israel began its ground invasion. Israel declared a unilateral ceasefire on 17 January, 22 days after the attacks began. The attacks have been the deadliest since Israel’s occupation of Gaza in 1967, with more than 1,300 Palestinians killed and thousands injured by intense bombardment from air, land and sea.
On 8 January, a panel featuring the following speakers was held at the University of Chicago to discuss the the reasons and ramifications of the recent attacks on Gaza and the larger Palestinian-Israeli conflict:
- John J. Mearsheimer is the Wendell Harrison Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago, and the co-author of The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy, a New York Times Best Seller.
- Ali Abunimah is a writer, commentator, and author of One Country: A Bold Proposal to end the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse, and co-founder of The Electronic Intifada.
- Norman G. Finkelstein is a scholar of political theory and the Israel-Palestine conflict. He is the author of five books including Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict, and most recently, Beyond Chutzpah: On the misuse of anti-Semitism and the abuse of history.
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