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Even as Israeli troops withdrew after a two-day operation in the Jenin refugee camp that left a dozen dead, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was warning that it would not be a one-off raid. And there are few who would doubt that being true.

Over the years, the camp situated in the north of the occupied West Bank has become in the eyes of some the breeding ground of terrorist activity; in others, it’s the heart of the Palestinian resistance.

Maha Nassar, a Palestinian history professor at the University of Arizona, takes readers through the background of the camp – from its emergence in the aftermath of the 1948 war to this week’s bloody assault.

“The latest raid … may be the biggest operation in the camp in 20 years,” she writes. “But it was built on decades of resistance and militant defiance that will, I believe, only increase with the latest deaths and destruction.”

Later today, we intend to publish a second article on the Jenin camp written by UCLA Israeli-Palestinian conflict scholar Dov Waxman. That piece similarly predicts no end to the violence and points the finger at a legitimacy crisis at the heart of the governing body responsible for security in much of the West Bank.

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Matt Williams

Senior International Editor

A Palestinian confronts Israeli military vehicles in the Jenin refugee camp on July 4, 2023. Nasser Ishtayeh/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Jenin has long been seen as the capital of Palestinian resistance and militancy – the latest raid will do little to shake that reputation

Maha Nassar, University of Arizona

Israeli troops have withdrawn after two days of fighting in a camp in the occupied West Bank. But Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that it would not be a ‘one-time action.’

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