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Handbook of Gender, Work, and Organization by Patricia Yancey Martin, David Knights,, Emma L Jeanes

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Chapter 23

The Military in a Globalized Environment: Perpetuating an ‘Extremely Gendered’ Organization

Orna Sasson-Levy

Bar-Ilan University, Israel

In March 2009, the Israel daily newspaper Haaretz published an article describing T-shirts designed by soldiers of the Israeli military to celebrate the conclusion of training courses. One of the T-shirts in the article featured the image of a pregnant Palestinian woman with a bull’s-eye superimposed on her belly, above a slogan reading, in English, ‘1 shot, 2 kills.’ Another T-shirt depicted a vulture sexually penetrating Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh (Blau, 2009). These vulgar T-shirts reflect the construction of a violent armed masculinity, which links together militarism, nationalistic chauvinism, and sexism. The drawings dehumanize Palestinians and legitimize violent attacks on civilians. Interestingly, on the same weekend that the article was published, testimonies were published in other Israeli media outlets of several soldiers who took part in the war in Gaza confirming the excessive use of force on the civilian population.

One ‘promise’ of globalization was that the spread of a global economy and global networks would bring about the end of wars (Russett and Oneal, 2001). The story above paints a different picture: Although the nature of wars has changed from the conventional wars of the twentieth century to low-intensity armed conflicts and the ‘war on terror’ of the twenty-first century, violent armed conflicts continue ...

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