1st Edition

The West Bank and Gaza Strip A Geography of Occupation and Disengagement

By Elisha Efrat Copyright 2006
    232 Pages 40 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    240 Pages 40 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Written in a clear and easy-to-follow style, this revealing text examines the contemporary political geography of the West Bank and Gaza strip.

    Descriptive in nature, it documents the changes and developments since 1967 right up to the disengagement from Gaza. The book is supplemented by numerous maps and covers issues including demography, Jewish settlements, water and natural resources, transport infrastructure, planning, partition plans for Jerusalem, settlement policy and the Separation Fence.

    One of the first books to tackle this contentious subject from a geographical rather than a political or historical perspective, The West Bank and Gaza Strip will be of huge interest to both undergraduate and graduate students studying the Israel-Palestine question.



    1. The Scope of Geography and Occupation

    2. The West Bank – A Jewish-Arab Struggle for Sovereignty

    Background; Judea and Samaria under Jordanian Rule; The Geographical Patterns of Arab Settlements and Towns; First Steps in the Physical Planning of the West Bank; The 'Allon' Plan; Successive Expansion Plans; The 'Gush Emunim' Activities; Types of Jewish Settlements in the West Bank; The Outposts; The Future of the "Green Line"; The 'Axis of the Hills' Plan; Requiem to the Jewish Settlement; The Struggle for Land; Disputed Waters; The Jewish-Palestinian Demography; Apartheid Roads; Peace Patterns in an Insurgency Region; The Planning System; The Map of the West Bank and the Implications of the Settlement Policy; Patterns toward Peace; The Separation Fence; The High Court Ruling regarding the Separation Fence

    3. Jerusalem – Reunited but Actually Divided

    Background; Planning Perspectives of the British; Planning Prospects of the Israelis in West Jerusalem since 1967; Planning Perspectives and Problems in the Reunited City; The Jewish-Arab Struggle in the City and in its Environs; Partition Plans for the Holy City

    4. The Gaza Strip – From Jewish Bloc-Settlement to Disengagement

    Background; Distribution of Settlements and Population in 1947; Gaza – the Main Urban Center; The Gaza Strip between 1948 and 1967; The Gaza Strip after 1967; The Qatif Bloc; The Evacuation of the Yamit Region as a Precedent; Disengagement from the Gaza Strip

    5. The Palestinian State

    6. Occupation and Delusions


    Selected Bibliography



    Elisha Efrat is Emeritus Professor of Geography at Tel Aviv University. He has held posts in Israel's Ministry of the Interior as Head of the Department of National and Regional Planning and has written more than 200 articles on Israeli issues. His previous publications include Israel - a Contemporary Geography (1996) and Physical Planning Prospects in Israel during 50 Years of Statehood (1998).

    "This is a refreshing and forthright book by a respected Israeli academic who, after a long career focused on planning issues in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza, is willing to take a stand, to challenge myths, and to say what many dare not say...The West Bank and the Gaza Strip: A Geography of Occupation and Disengagement is highly recommended for its detailed description of the process of Israeli occupation and for its analysis of the core issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict...The primary strength of the book is derived from the fact that it is written by an experienced Israeli professor who has witnessed first hand the planning, implementation, and impending failure of Israel's occupation."--Middle East Journal, Vol 60 No 4, Autumn 2006