Medical lawfare: The Nakba and Israel’s attacks on Palestinian healthcare

Nicola Perugini, Neve Gordon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

In this article, the authors coin the phrase medical lawfare to describe how Israel has been justifying its systematic attacks on healthcare facilities in the Gaza Strip during its five military assaults on the besieged enclave between 2008 and 2023. They show how Israel mobilizes the laws of armed conflict dealing with human shields and “hospital shields” to securitize lifesaving and sustaining infrastructures and legitimize their destruction. They describe how medical lawfare works as a racialized form of necropolitical governance that intensifies the Nakba’s settler-colonial logic of elimination while casting Palestinians as guilty of bringing disaster upon themselves.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-24
JournalJournal of Palestine Studies
Early online date9 Apr 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Apr 2024

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Gaza
  • healthcare
  • hospitals
  • Israel
  • lawfare
  • laws of armed conflict
  • medical lawfare
  • medical units
  • Nakba
  • Palestine


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