Photo of Samer Abdelnour

Samer Abdelnour

Al-Shabaka Policy Advisor Samer Abdelnour is an academic and activist. He co-founded Al-Shabaka in 2009 and served as a founding board member until 2016.


Commentary Politics

Another Casualty of Israel’s Wars: Palestinians’ Right to Education

Palestinian children atop destroyed Gaza building

Palestinian educational institutions, faculty, and students have not been spared the violence of Israel’s military crackdown across the Occupied Palestinian Territory this summer. Campus raids, the confiscation of student property, and airstrike damage to schools are just some examples of Israel’s recent acts of aggression against education.

Read More
Policy Brief Politics

Beyond South Africa: Understanding Israeli Apartheid

Israeli apartheid is often compared to South Africa’s but Al-Shabaka Policy Advisor Samer Abdelnour argues that it is a unique brand with specific characteristics. He identifies three inter-locking dimensions of Israeli apartheid – physical, architecture, and ideological – concluding that it is far more sophisticated than the South African brand and suggesting directions for thinking and action to successfully dismantle it.

Read More
Policy Brief Economic Issues

Farming Palestine for Freedom

Photo by Jill Granberg

For Palestinians, agriculture is more than a source of income or an economic category in budgets and plans. It is tied to the people’s history, identity, and self-expression, and drives the struggle against Israel’s Separation Wall. In this brief, Lebanese activist, author, and agronomist Rami Zurayk joins Al-Shabaka Policy Advisors Samer Abdelnour and Alaa Tartir to tackle the almost spiritual significance of the land to the Palestinians and the deliberate Israeli efforts to break the link between farmers and their crops. Click below for the full brief or read the executive summary.

Read More
Policy Brief Economic Issues

Defeating Dependency, Creating a Resistance Economy

In an important recent piece - Economic Hallucination - Ramallah-based Al-Shabaka policy advisor Sam Bahour exposed the charade played by both Western donors and the Palestinian Authority (PA) to cover up the occupied territory’s inexorable economic meltdown after decades of Israeli military occupation. Arguing that the combined donor-PA approach poses major obstacles to freedom and rights, Bahour concluded: “It’s time for a new economic model, one built on economic justice, social welfare, solidarity, and sustainability.” What would such an economic model look like and how can Palestinians living under occupation move from today’s grim reality to an economy that sustains the quest for self-determination? Al-Shabaka policy advisors Alaa Tartir and Samer Abdelnour join Bahour to debate these questions and explore alternatives.

Read More
Policy Brief Economic Issues

A New Model for Palestinian Development

Photo of olive tree

Politically-motivated aid for the occupied Palestinian territories has ostensibly promoted “development” and “reconstruction” while indirectly supporting Israel’s policies of occupation and Palestinian de-development. The result: a steady increase in Palestinian poverty rates, ongoing Israeli expropriation of Palestinian lands and resources, and the continuing blockade of Gaza. Al-Shabaka Policy Advisor Samer Abdelnour argues that Palestinians need a drastic change in development approach.

Read More