Gush Katif: When Jews expelled Jews

In the final episode of the season, Noam Weissman delves into one of the most divisive events in Israel’s history — the disengagement from the Gaza Strip. He looks at the historical context, the political and religious debate leading up to the pull-out, the trauma it caused for Israelis, the effect that the disengagement had on the peace process and whether the results were worth the suffering it caused.

  • Review
  • Discussion
  • Activities
  • Reflection
  • Further Learning
  1. In what year did Israel withdraw all of its citizens and troops from the Gaza Strip?
    • 1995
    • 2000
    • 2005 
    • 2015
  2. Who was the prime minister of Israel at the time of the disengagement?
    • Ariel Sharon 
    • Yitzhak Rabin
    • Ehud Barak
    • Ehud Olmert
  3. What terror group took charge of the Gaza Strip after Israel’s withdrawal?
    • Fatah
    • Hamas
    • Hezbollah
    • ISIS
  4. How many wars has Israel fought with Hamas in Gaza since the disengagement?
    • Three
    • None
    • Five
    • One
  5. What is the name of the group of Jewish settlements that were situated in Southern Gaza?
    • Gush Katif 
    • Gush Dan
    • Gush Etzion
    • Gush Emunim
  6. Although it evacuated all of its communities in Gaza, Israel and Egypt still:
    • Are at war with each other
    • Build settlements in Gaza
    • Control the sea and land borders with Gaza (which Palestinians call a blockade)
    • Support Hamas
  1. Given what you know about Israel’s past 15 years since the Gaza disengagement, do you think the decision to withdraw from this area was good or bad? Explain.
  2. Israelis who opposed the disengagement used the slogan “Yehudi lo migaresh Yehudi” “A Jew does not expel a Jew.” What do you think they meant by this? Thinking about the history of Jews being expelled from lands, why might some view this slogan as effective while others view it as offensive?
  3. Israeli soldiers were tasked with forcibly removing those Israeli citizens who did not leave their homes in Gush Katif. What do you think this experience was like for Israeli soldiers to forcibly remove other Israelis and Jews?
  4. The Israeli government feared that soldiers would refuse orders and not remove Israeli citizens from Gush Katif. Most soldiers did obey, though. Why do you think most soldiers did obey these difficult orders? And for those who did not, were they justified in doing so? What would you have done?
  5. Look at this picture of a Jewish community in a town near the beach in Gush Katif. There were full-fledged houses and infrastructure left behind. How would you react if your government demanded that your community must evacuate its homes and start anew elsewhere?
  1. Give your students our Kahoot on Israel’s Disengagement from Gaza!
  2. Lead a podcast listening party. Download our PDF Guide.
  1. Unpacked for Educators, Israel’s Disengagement from Gaza
  2. Noah M. Levine, Understanding the Gaza Disengagement
  3. Rabbi Rabbi Yosef Elnekaveh, To the youth of Gaza: It wasn’t always like this
  4. William Booth and Ruth Eglash, “A Decade Later, Many Israelis See Gaza Pullout as a Big Mistake” 
  5. Primary source – Ariel Sharon-George H.W. Bush letters George Bush (II) and Ariel Sharon Letters

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