This is an opinion editorial by Seth Cantey, an associate professor of politics, and Mohammed Mourtaja, a Palestinian student studying international economics.

A debate is taking shape over whether bitcoin can play a role in Palestinians’ quest for freedom from Israeli occupation. It began a year ago, in September 2021, when Chief Strategy Officer at the Human Rights Foundation Alex Gladstein published “Can Bitcoin be Palestine’s Currency of Freedom?” on Bitcoin Magazine. The argument goes like this: Bitcoin allows users to securely send, receive and store value without reliance on any third party. In doing so, it enhances personal autonomy and serves as a form of resistance to occupation. In Gladstein’s words, “It is a peaceful protest, a digital shield, that could lead to big change.”



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