A Truth and Reconciliation Commission for Palestine/Israel: Healing Spirit Injuries
Transnational Law & Contemporary Problems, Vol. 17, No. 139, 2008
26 Pages Posted: 22 May 2008
This article discusses the potentiality of a Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) for the Holyland - Palestine and Israel. At some point, peace may come to the region and the independent state of Palestine may sit by side with Israel. At that time, the Palestinians may wish to come to terms with the spirit injuries that have affected their people since 1948 when the state of Israel was created or 1967 when the now forty-year old Israeli Occupation of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem began. Spirit injuries represent a combination of physical, emotional, and spiritual harms. After elaborating upon truth commissions generally, the article lays out two possible scenarios - a commission for an independent Palestine and the less likely scenario of a binational commission for both Palestine and Israel. The article then focuses on a variety of issues fleshing out the parameters of the TRC: When to create the commission? What sources would legitimate the TRC? What would be the purpose of the TRC? What time period would it cover? How would it be funded? How would it be staffed? What jurisdiction would it have? What standards of evidence? Where would it be held? Would some hearings be closed? How to deal with those opposed to the process? How long should the process take? How to implement the Commission final report? The article concludes that despite the negatives associated with TRCs in other societies, there are sufficient potential positive benefits that the option should seriously be discussed within Palestinian society and perhaps between the Palestinian and Israeli nations.
Keywords: Palestine, Israel, truth & reconcialtion, human rights
JEL Classification: K10, K19, K30, K33, K39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation