Abstract and Keywords
Even though settlers constitute a minority whose goals are not shared by the majority of Israelis, their settlements’ project still thrives. This chapter strives to explain this paradox by providing three complementary explanations for the success of the settlers’ movement in overcoming their limited representation within the political system, as well as changes in Israel’s political and strategic environment. It attributes the impressive success of the settlers to their ability to establish effective networks of influence within the Israeli public administration; their successful branding, which associated the settlements with the traditional Zionist ethos; and their movement into the mainstream of the political system. After setting the stage for its analysis with a brief overview of the origins and evolution of the settlements’ project, the chapter presents explanations and elucidates how they complement each other effectively to allow the settlers to bypass, or overcome, various political and security-related challenges. The chapter concludes by assessing the ability of the settlers’ community to continue to utilize similar methods of political activism and policymaking in the future.
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