Associate Professor of Government Ronnie Olesker has published a new book that explores Israel’s standing in the international community titled, “Israel’s Securitization Dilemma: BDS and the Battle for the Legitimacy of the Jewish State.”
Olesker’s book “examines how the Zionist movement and the state of Israel have dealt with longstanding efforts to delegitimize Israel’s standing in the international community, including by the Arab League Boycott, the United Nations, and the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement,” according to Routledge, the book’s publisher.
Olesker, whose work focuses on international relations and security studies, argues that Israel has constructed challenges to its legitimacy in the form of threats that undermine its national security. In response to these threats, Israel has securitized its Jewish identity and as a result, the state has adopted extraordinary measures that undermine its international legitimacy, rather than enhancing it.
By using historical and archival research, and analyzing legal and governmental documents, public statements made by Israeli officials, and interviews with Israeli policymakers, Olesker’s book showcases the ways securitization is integrated into Israeli policymaking and “brings into focus key problems that Israel faces as it attempts to combat delegitimization movements against its self-constructed identity as a Jewish state.”
At St. Lawrence, Olesker regularly teaches Introduction to International Relations, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, and Middle East Politics. She holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the Fletcher School at Tufts University and is a former assistant prosecutor at the Central District Attorney’s office in Tel Aviv, Israel.