the israeli-palestinian Legal war

In Paperback Now...

The perfect primer for anyone seeking a complete description of the legal interplay behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.


Joel M. Margolis is a senior corporate counsel in an international telecommunications company. As a telecom lawyer, he has worked for decades in government affairs, including international matters.


He is also a certified information privacy professional (CIPP-US), a former registered lobbyist, and former holder of a top-secret security clearance. He has never represented a party with an interest in the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

Mr. Margolis has laid out the legal arguments with a clarity, conciseness, and neutrality that has been lacking in other treatments of the subject. I urge anyone interested in Israeli-Palestinian relations to read this “plain-talk” presentation of the issues.
A refreshing presentation…that lays out a clear portrayal of the conflict.

– Michael B.

…a thorough summary with detailed citations, making this book also invaluable as a reference work.

– D. Abrams


To the public, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is an endless, variable-intensity war, where attacks and reprisals ricochet in a desensitizing “cycle of violence.” The opposing leaders exchange timeworn denunciations. Foreign affairs experts warn, “There’s no military solution.” Academics proclaim the path to peace is “well known” – even though the most widely recognized paths have led nowhere. Rarely do the public-facing figures reveal what the fighting is about.

At root in the Israeli-Palestinian rivalry is a tangle of legal claims. To understand the origins of the conflict, what the parties want, and how their goals might be reconciled, one must learn the relevant contentions of international law. The media is a poor starting point. News reports disperse legal terms like “Green Line,” “occupation,” and “right of return” without explanation. Often the journalists spin the words to favor one protagonist or the other.

The Israeli-Palestinian Legal War is a primer for those seeking a complete and accurate description of the legal interplay behind the gunfire. In these pages, anyone from a college student to a seasoned litigator can learn the basic official positions of both parties as articulated by their leading legal champions. A background section traces the legal history of the quarrel from ancient times to 2020. Each major issue in the debate is represented by a “pro-Palestinian argument” and a “pro-Israeli argument.”

In effect, the reader can assume the role of a juror and hear each team of advocates advance its position. Non-legal equities are introduced, just as in a courtroom, to provide political, military, and religious context for the legal claims.

Then the reader can determine which side makes the best case.