But these fears cannot justify the devastating medical and psychological consequences for Palestinians of the barriers, checkpoints, bombing campaigns, blockades, and incursions. These measures to protect Israelis must be examined today in terms of their humanitarian fallout. Israelis and supporters of Israel must question and confront the human costs of the policies used to achieve this security. And the governments and international institutions either explicitly or tacitly supporting these policies must do the same, because the devastation they have wrought is undeniable.
After the 1967 Arab–Israeli war , the United Nations Security Council unanimously passed resolution 242 calling for Israeli withdrawal from the territories occupied during the war, in exchange for "termination of all claims or states of belligerency" and "acknowledgement of sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every state in the area". The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which had been formed in 1964, strongly criticized the resolution, saying that it reduced the question of Palestine to a refugee problem.  :18
The rapid rise of the Islamic State (IS) 1 in Iraq — which saw the capture of major Iraqi cities such as Mosul, Tikrit and Fallujah and culminated with IS declaring its caliphate in the summer of 2014 — caught the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) unprepared, to the extent that at one point Baghdad itself was within IS's grasp. 2 As a response to this existential threat, Iraq's most senior religious cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, issued an edict for all able-bodied men to join the ISF and help protect the homeland, its people and the holy shrines.