04. The House on the Hill

Intractable show

Summary: In our fourth episode, Skyler tackles the controversial topic of the West Bank settlement movement. What motivates Israelis to live east of the Green Line, and what role do the Jewish communities of the West Bank—often referred to by supporters of the movement as Judea and Samaria—play in a theoretical peace process? Dr. Sara Yael Hirschhorn, Oxford University lecturer and author of City on a Hilltop: American Jews and the Israeli Settler Movement, helps situate us in the ideological history of the movement, as well as the current situation. Dr. Ronit Levine-Schnur, a legal expert in property law, walks us through some of the legal complexities of deciding what land in the West Bank belongs to whom. Israeli documentary filmmaker Ayelet Bechar talks to us about her personal project, Armed, an exploration of armed female settlers in the West Bank. And, finally, we talk to two people who live in the West Bank themselves: One religious settler (Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger of Roots) and one Palestinian (Issa Amro, of Youth Against Settlements), each of whom has chosen to turn away from the cycle of violence that often seems to consume the region, in favor of a different solution.