January 2014, I marched down the streets of Tel Aviv, surrounded by thousands of asylum seekers from Sudan and Eritrea, shouting ‘Freedom! Freedom! Freedom!’ Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that one year later I would be sitting in the offices of those responsible for Israel’s asylum policy and stringent immigration laws. I conducted interviews with legislators and state Advocates as a part of my research toward my MSt thesis.

Never would I have considered in the past to speak to those responsible for the detention of so many of my friends in the Holot Detention Facility in Israel’s Negev Desert. Never would I have thought that they would speak to me. Years of field activism were now supplemented by inside perspectives to how the state thinks. Conducting this research at Oxford endowed my work a certain accountability and legitimacy, through commitment to academic honesty. I am sure it made people more inclined to open up. Never could I have envisioned that so much could transpire in one year.