‘Ahmed, my son, how they killed you’: Israeli soldiers perform the Palestinian enemy

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Navigating the landscape of enemy formation research, this paper studies the process of enemy making within an intractable conflict. Through analysing Israeli soldiers´ war songs, I study the dynamic process of enemy making over three periods: the first intifada, the second intifada, and the last decade. I argue that the attitude of Israeli soldiers towards Palestinians has changed from ambivalent empathy to dehumanization and eventually to demonization, viewing the Palestinians as a biblical enemy worthy of total destruction. However, the causation between the mode of violence and the perception of the enemy is still unclear; it is uncertain which one leads to the other. Nevertheless, they mutually feed into and complement each other.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Peace Research
Publication statusSubmitted - 19 Feb 2024

ID: 382768532