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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Editor-in-Chief: Prof. Alpaslan Özerdem | Coventry University, UK Managing Editors*: Dr. Sung Yong Lee | Coventry University, UK Laura Payne | Coventry University, UK Assistant Editors*: Mr. Richard Slade | Coventry University, UK Mr. Hüsrev Tabak | University of Manchester, UK

Editorial Board*: Prof. the Baroness Haleh Afshar | University of York, UK Prof. Bruce Baker | Coventry University, UK Dr. Richard Bowd | UNDP, Nepal Prof. Ntuda Ebodé | University of Yaounde II, Cameroon Prof. Scott Gates | PRIO, Norway Dr. Antonio Giustozzi | London School of Economics, UK Dr. Cathy Gormley-Heenan | University of Ulster, UK Prof. Paul Gready | University of York, UK Prof. Fen Hampson | Carleton University, Canada Prof. Mohammed Hamza | Lund University, Sweden Prof. Alice Hills |University of Leeds Dr. Maria Holt | University of Westminster, UK Prof. Alan Hunter | Coventry University, UK Dr. Tim Jacoby | University of Manchester, UK Dr. Khalid Khoser | Geneva Centre for Security Policy, Switzerland Dr. William Lume | South Bank University, UK Dr. Roger Mac Ginty | St Andrews' University, UK Mr. Rae McGrath | Save the Children UK Somalia Prof. Mansoob Murshed | ISS, The Netherlands Dr. Wale Osofisan | HelpAge International, UK Dr. Mark Pellling | King's College, UK Prof. Mike Pugh | University of Bradford, UK Mr. Gianni Rufini | Freelance Consultant, Italy Dr. Mark Sedra | Centre for Int. Governance Innovation, Canada Dr. Emanuele Sommario | Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy Dr. Hans Skotte | Trondheim University, Norway Dr. Arne Strand | CMI, Norway Dr. Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh | University of Po, France Dr. Mandy Turner | University of Bradford, UK Prof. Roger Zetter | University of Oxford, UK

The Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security is published on behalf of the Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN) as bi-annual academic e-journal. The articles are brought into use via the website of CESRAN (www.cesran.org). CESRAN and the Editors of the Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security do not expect that readers of the review will sympathise with all the sentiments they find, for some of our writers will flatly disagree with others. It does not accept responsibility for the views expressed in any article, which appears in the Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security. * The surnames are listed in alphabetical order.


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol.3 | No.2 | October 2013

Indexing & Abstracting

EconLit

Genamics JournalSeek

Index Copernicus

Index Islamicus

Peace Palace Library

The Journal of Conflict Transformation and Security (JCTS) provides a platform to analyse conflict transformation as the processes for managing change in a non-violent way to produce equitable outcomes for all parties that are sustainable. Security is understood as encapsulating a wide range of human security concerns that can be tackled by both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ measures. Therefore, the Journal’s scope not only covers such security sector reform issues as restructuring security apparatus, reintegration of ex-combatants, clearance of explosive remnants of war and cross-border management, but also the protection of human rights, justice, rule of law and governance.

Peer-reviewed | Academic journal By CESRAN (Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis)


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol.3 | No.2 | October 2013

Table of Contents Articles 104

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden By Dr. Bahar Baser

130

Twenty Years of Western Military Intervention: An Emerging Trend for International Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding By Kawser Ahmed

154

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions By Dr. Marwan Darweish

174

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation By Dr. Imad El-Anis and Ashraf Hamed

Field Report 194

Supporting Young People as Catalysts of Social Cohesion in Conflict Settings: Some Lessons from the Democratic Republic of Congo By Guelord Bahati Mbaenda

Book Reviews 207

Robert Egnell and Peter HaldĂŠn (Ed.) New Agendas of State-building: Hybridity, contingency and history Bilge Yabanci

210

Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh (Ed.) Rethinking the Liberal Peace: External Models and Local Alternatives Yoshiaki Furuzawa

213

Danielle Beswick and Paul Jackson Conflict, Security and Development: An Introduction Laurie Mincieli

216

Brett Bowden, Hilary Charlesworth and Jeremy Farrall (Eds.) The role of International Law in Rebuilding Societies after Conflict Margarita Constantinou

219

Douglas M. Gibler The Territorial Peace: Borders, State Development, and International Conflict Rajeev Ranjan Chaturvedy

223

Efraim Inbar (Ed.) The Arab Spring, Democracy and Security: Domestic and International Ramifications Zenonas Tziarras

227

Rebecca Roberts Palestinians in Lebanon: Refugees Living with Long-term Displacement Abigail Bainbridge


www.cesran.org

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for STRATEGIC RESEARCH and ANALYSIS

CESRAN Int. is a think-tank specialising on international relations in general, and global peace, conflict and development related issues and challenges.

The main business objective/function is that we provide expertise at an international level to a wide range of policy making actors such as national governments and international organisations. CESRAN International with its provisions of academic and semi-academic publications, journals and a fully-functioning website has already become a focal point of expertise on strategic research and analysis with regards to global security and peace. The Centre is particularly unique in being able to bring together wide variety of expertise from different countries and academic disciplines.

The main activities that CESRAN International undertakes are providing consultancy services and advice to public and private enterprises, organising international conferences and publishing academic material.

Some of CESRAN International’s current publications are (www.cesran.org):  Journal of Global Analysis (biannual, peer reviewed)  Journal of Conflict Transformation and Security (biannual, peer reviewed)  Journal of Eurasian Politics and Society (biannual, peer reviewed)  International Journal of Maritime Security (biannual, peer reviewed) - upcoming  Political Reflection Magazine (quarterly news-magazine)  CESRAN Paper Series  Turkey Focus Policy Brief  CESRAN Policy Brief  China Focus Network


October 2013

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden By Dr. Bahar Baser*

Abstract This paper investigates political mobilization for homeland politics among secondgeneration Turkish and Kurdish diasporas in Sweden. By looking closely at the relations between these two groups, it seeks to understand how an ethnic conflict in the homeland is carried beyond borders and recreated in transnational space. It argues that while there has been no collective violence between the two groups many conflict indicators are evident, including: social distance, separation of social spaces, mutual avoidance, and conflicts at the discursive level. Although the conflict adversely affects their interactions, the animosity and conflict dynamics do not mirror the situation in the homeland and they have taken on a new form as a result of the conditions and experiences in the host country. Key Words: Turkish, Kurdish, diaspora, conflict import, second generation

Politics and International Studies Department University of Warwick Social Sciences Building, CV4 7AL Coventry, United Kingdom

* Bahar Baser is Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Warwick as part of the `Diasporas and Contested Sovereignty` project led by Dr. Maria Koinova and funded by the European Research Council. Her research focuses on the mobilization of Turkish and Iraqi Kurdish diaspora in Europe. She completed a PhD in Social and Political Sciences at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. She has worked as a Visiting Research Fellow at Humboldt University (Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences) in Germany, REMESO (Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society) in Norrkoping, Sweden and Istituto Ciencias Sociais (ICS) in Lisbon, Portugal. Her research interests include conflict resolution, migration and diaspora studies. She has published articles related to diasporas and conflict resolution, third party mediation in Nagorno-Karabakh, political violence in Sri Lanka and Sri Lankan Tamil and Kurdish Diasporas.

www.cesran.org

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol. 3 | No. 2 October 2013


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

Introduction1

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Since the foundation of the Turkish Republic, the “Kurdish Question” has been a source of lingering flux and violence in Turkey. This violence peaked in the early 1980s because of the Turkish state’s suppression of the Kurdish ethnic identity and its refusal to grant them political, cultural and linguistic rights. It became a complex ethnic conflict when the struggle turned into a low-intensity civil war between the Turkish Army and the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party). Despite the gradual intensification of conflict, inter-ethnic group clashes remained negligible. However, there have been attacks against Kurdish people and their political party buildings in Western Turkey and recent studies show that inter-communal tension between the Turkish and Kurdish populations in Turkey is on the rise.2 Despite recent developments in the Kurdish-Turkish peace process, Turkey has far to go before reaching a stable, democratic resolution of the long-standing and complex issues concerning the country’s Kurdish minority. Due to the Turkish and Kurdish migration flows, the conflict has spilled over to the European countries that have received migrants from Turkey. The dispersal of the Turkish-Kurdish conflict became visible in the international media with reports of violent confrontations between the two migrant communities in Europe. For example, during the summer of 2011, a group of Turks gathered at Stuttgart to condemn “terrorism.” It was a response to a specific event in Turkey but it could also be seen as a reaction to a series of long-standing complaints between the two ethnic groups. PKKsympathizers immediately began a counter-protest and burned a Turkish flag. The situation deteriorated when the protestors started throwing stones at each other, and at the German police. Similarly, in the autumn of 2011 dozens of Turks and Kurds were wounded or arrested in the Netherlands after a fight broke out between the two groups. After these events many Kurdish associations sent petitions to the Dutch police asking for protection from Turkish nationalist attacks.3 Other incidents also have been reported in France and Belgium. Sweden is one of the few countries in Europe with Turkish and Kurdish populations that do not exhibit collective violence towards each other. During an interview in 2009, a Swedish politician told me: “Fortunately, there is no conflict between Turks and Kurds in Sweden. We

1. The author wants to thank Dr. Maria Koinova, Dzeneta Karabegovic and the anonymous reviewers for their insightful feedback. 2. For further reading see: Murat Ergin (2012), ‘The racialization of Kurdish identity in Turkey’, Ethnic and Racial Studies, pp. 1-20. 3. “Fears of Further Turkish Kurdish Clashes in Europe”, 19 November 2011. http:// www.rudaw.net/english/news/turkey/4158.html, (Accessed 21 May 2012).


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Due to the lack of violent encounters, the relationship between Turks and Kurds in Sweden has received little academic or media attention. Moreover, it has not attracted the attention of hostland policy makers, as it is not considered a threat to domestic security. In other countries, such as Germany, the spill-over of the Turkish-Kurdish conflict has been seen as a threat to public order due to clashes between the two groups, including violent demonstrations that have led to altercations with the police, arson attacks, and attempts at lynching. Nevertheless, despite these events in much of Europe, interactions between the two groups are not always confrontational. On the contrary, both conflict and cooperation are present: business relationships, inter-marriages and friendships, as well as collaboration and solidarity at the organizational level (particularly among the leftist and Kurdish groups), also exist.6 In Sweden, however, we find mutual avoidance and social distance rather than a combination of negative and positive interactions. This shows clearly that there is a specificity of the conflict import in each hostland context, and that certain internal dynamics need to be taken into account. By analysing the relations between the Turkish and Kurdish diasporas in Sweden, this article goes beyond existing studies by looking at how an ethnic conflict is carried beyond borders by migrant groups, and how it is recreated in transnational space through generational continuation. It argues that the change in location transports the conflict from the home country into another context with a different set of opportunities and limitations. As the conflict changes under different conditions, the pre-existing homeland hierarchies between the two groups could prevail or be challenged. The impact of host country policies and politics on the conflict dynamics is more apparent among the second generation who were socialized in this new environment. Conceptual Clarification and Data Gathering In the past, the term “diaspora” applied primarily to Jews, and later to Greeks, Armenians and Africans. However, it became such a fashionable concept that numerous groups declared 4. The supreme decision-making assembly in Sweden. 5. Galtung defines negative peace as the absence of war or violence and positive peace as the integration of human society. For his definitions of positive and negative peace, see: Galtung, J. 2011. Peace, Positive and Negative, The Encyclopaedia of Peace Psychology. 6. Østergaard –Nielsen, Transnational Politics.; Nell, Transnational migrant politics in the Netherlands.; Baser, Inherited conflicts.

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

hear what is going on in Germany or in other countries. Turks and Kurds live peacefully here.” When I left the Riksdag4 that day, I began to question what she had told me: What is conflict? What is peace? What is different about Sweden? At that time, I had been interviewing Turkish and Kurdish second-generation diaspora members to learn about their perceptions of the Turkish-Kurdish conflict in Turkey and while my research confirmed that there had been no violent clashes between politically active Turkish and Kurdish groups in Sweden, I could not define this situation as peaceful: the absence of violence does not mean the absence of conflict, and thus peace. Based on my observations in Sweden, I would define the situation using the metaphor of negative peace5: There is no overt violence, but there is a high level of mistrust and tension between the two communities.

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themselves to be or were described as a diaspora.7 Brubaker calls this process a ‘diaspora’ diaspora- a dispersion of meanings of the term in semantic, conceptual and disciplinary space.”8 Thus it is crucial to clarify a standpoint in this literature before beginning an empirical or analytical discussion about diaspora groups.

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Some argue that the emergence of diaspora groups can be explained by an essentialist point of view, as a natural and expected outcome of migration. However, this perspective ignores the mobilization factor inherent to the diasporization process and runs the “risk of moving towards essentializing diaspora as an ethnic label rather than a framework of analysis.”9 This paper, in accordance with Adamson,10 builds on the constructivist approach, which perceives diasporic identity as a social construction of transnational networks and identities. Not all members of an ethnic and religious community in a hostland constitute a diaspora. Diasporic identity is formed as a result of a combination of experiences both in the homeland and hostland. According to this approach, a diaspora is not simply a dispersed ethnic group but an identity constructed by the mobilization efforts of certain elites in the hostland context. Political engagement also constitutes one of the central characteristics of a diaspora group. As Lyons and Mandaville argue, diasporas are not “given, pre-existing social actors”, rather, they are “generated by politics”. Not every migrant with a sense-of-belonging to the homeland is a member of the diaspora, therefore “diasporas include only those who are mobilized to engage in homeland political processes.”11 In parallel to the diaspora definition that this article follows, the focus of the enquiry is on Turks and Kurds who interpret “Turkishness” and “Kurdishness” as a politicized collective identity. This paper does not represent the entire Turkish or Kurdish population in Sweden, but, rather, focuses on second-generation Turks and Kurds with a politicized ethnic consciousness about the political situation in Turkey. To borrow Brubaker’s terms, I am interested in Turks and Kurds who take a “stance” or have a “claim” about the politics of the homeland. Shain and Barth divide the diaspora members into three categories: core members, passive members, and silent members. “Core members are the organizing elites, intensively active in diasporic affairs and in a position to appeal for mobilization of the larger diaspora. Passive members are likely to be available for mobilization when the active leadership calls upon them. Silent members are a larger pool of people who are generally uninvolved in diasporic affairs but who may mobilize in times of crises.”12 This paper focuses solely on the core and passive members of both diasporas. Those who are assimilated into Swedish society or show no interest in homeland politics are not included in the sample. My interest is in those groups that act as lobby groups, engage in politics both in home and host countries, seek to affect policy-making and carry their causes to the political platforms in Sweden.

7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12.

Cohen, “Diasporas and the nation state”, 507. Brubaker, “The ‘diaspora’ diaspora”, 1-3. Butler, “Defining Diaspora, Refining a Discourse.” Adamson, “Constructing the Diaspora.” Lyons and Mandaville, “Think Locally, Act Globally”, 126. Shain and Barth, “Diasporas and International Relations Theory”, 452.


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The findings of this paper are based on extensive fieldwork in Sweden, which interviews and participant observation (approximately 100 semi-structured interviews over a period of six months with first and second-generation diaspora members). I found the participants of my study through migrant organisations – as well as blogs, discussion forums and protest events. Thus, the subjects of this study are those who voice their opinions on the political events in Turkey – either on the streets, in places of protest, in the parliaments, at seminars, in newspapers or in virtual chat rooms. Not all interviewees belong to a migrant organisation but all are active to some degree in Turkish13 or Kurdish14 politics. I conducted extensive research on the Turkish and Kurdish organisations that have homeland-oriented agendas to make this study representative of both diaspora groups. I travelled to various cities in order to conduct interviews and I also took part in a variety of activities – from annual youth organisation conferences to football games, weddings, and protests.

Most of the violent conflicts fought since the Cold War have been intra-state conflicts.15 These conflicts, which have ethnic, religious or ideological characteristics, are no longer fought solely in war zones within national borders, but are increasingly dispersed and delocalized16 and not surprisingly, they force large numbers of people to migrate. Often, members of conflicting parties find themselves in the same new country of residence with a different context of rights, duties and opportunity structures. Numerous groups among these migrants, regardless of their status as refugees, asylum seekers or workers, maintain their attachments to their homeland and in one way or another become involved in the homeland conflicts from afar. Moreover, the conflicts - whether on-going or recently ended, play a crucial role in how migrants construct their identities and how they position themselves towards the “others” in their new country of residence. The conflicts are not only transported to the hostland, but also transmitted to new generations, which accordingly causes a continuation of the tensions with each new generation. Tensions rooted in homeland conflicts usually reveal themselves in the host country in the form of clashes between rival groups, especially after critical homeland events. Other evidence of tension includes non-violent and discursive confrontations, and social distance or mutual avoidance. However, it is usually the violent interactions that catch the attention of the broader public, national and international media, and even politicians. Besides the confrontations between Turkish and Kurdish groups, there are various examples of rival ethnic groups – such as the Tamils and Sinhalese in Canada or Serbs and Croats in Australia – trying to “settle their scores” in their host countries, in places of protests, in the back streets of migrant-populated districts, in parliaments, civil society organizations or cyber space. 13. The Turkish organizations included in this study are: TRF (Turkiska Riksförbundet), STRF (Svensk-Turkiska Riksförbundet), TUF (Turkiska Ungdomsförbundet) and TSAF (Turkiska Student- och Akademiker Föreningen). 14. The Kurdish organizations included in this study are: KRF (Kurdiska Riksförbundet i Sverige), Kurdiska Radet, KOMKAR i Sverige (Svensk Kurdiska), UNGKURD (Riksförbundet Ung Kurd) and KSAF (Kurdiska Student och Akademiker). 15. Conflict Barometer 2010. Last access 21 May 2012. http://hiik.de/en/konfliktbarometer/ pdf/ConflictBarometer_2010.pdf. 16. Demmers, “Diaspora and Conflict”, 85.

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Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

As Mohammad-Arif et.al.17 argue, migration is an experience that reinforces the already existing antagonisms and strengthens the perceptions of migrant groups towards each other by underpinning the notions of “us” and “them.” However this process can vary significantly from one hostland to another, depending on the models of integration and other factors. The social distance between antagonistic groups is shaped by endogenous and exogenous factors. To fully understand the conflict dynamics that are transported to a host country, it is necessary to explore the mutual perceptions of antagonistic diaspora groups. As Brown suggests: “nationalism in diaspora settings often seems to have a life of its own, independent from political developments in the homeland, but constantly making reference to them.” 18 Therefore, it would be short sighted to assume that the interactions between the two groups will not take on another form in a specific hostland context.

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One must also consider the role of the second generation in this conflict transformation. Do they avoid homeland politics? Do they participate more than their parents? The discussion of how, and in what ways, the second generation become involved in homeland politics demonstrate competing views. Some argue that the second and third generation are more active because the first generation’s primary concern was survival in the hostland and successive generations did not have this fundamental issue to focus on. Others argue that a diasporic sense of belonging weakens with each generation. For example, Zunzer, referring to Somali refugees, has noted that: “There is a gap between the first-generation refugees and second-generation migrants: While the first generation is still highly politicized, the second generation has hardly any interest in even visiting the country.”19 Many disagree with the perception of the second generation as passive by comparison to their parents. For instance, when Batta analyses refugee diasporas, she hypothesizes that second-generation refugees create a stronger nationalist identity than the first-generation refugees in the absence of integration; therefore they tend to be more aggressive than first-generation refugees.20 This article argues that, in the content of the case study, the descendants of both conflictgenerated and labour diasporas have an interest in homeland politics and continue to mobilize for political issues related to the homeland, despite never having lived there. Diasporization Process of the First-Generation Turks and Kurds Immigration from Turkey to Sweden began in the mid-1960s in the form of labour migration. The majority came from a small district called Kulu (Konya), and they were typically of peasant origin, with a low educational background.21 The migration flows were sustained through labour migration and family reunification. In some cases, 100-150 people from the same village migrated to Sweden and in other cases large families, with several generations, all moved together. Therefore, the migrants from Konya are the most dominant group among the Turkish community and the sense of belonging and loyalties they harbour also revolve around regional identity. The migrant profile shifted with the arrival of asylum-seekers who came to Sweden after the 1971 military intervention and the military coup in 1980. These 17. 18. 19. 20. 21.

Mohammed-Arif et.al., “Introduction. Migration and constructions of the other.” Brown, Coping with long-distance nationalism, 15. Zunzer, “Potential peace actors outside their homeland”, 5. Batta, Refugee integration, long distance nationalism, and refugee-related violence., 19. Westin, “Young people of migrant origin in Sweden”, 991-992.


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The Turkish Community in Sweden: Prelude to a Diaspora? Apart from members of a few leftist groups who fled Turkey for political reasons in the 1970s and 80s, the Turkish exodus to Sweden was a result of labour migration. This migrant profile revealed itself in the organizational structure of the Turkish groups. The organizations had no clear political agenda and did not necessarily build transnational ties with political movements in Turkey. Unlike other groups from Turkey, such as Kurds and Assyrians, the Turkish organizations removed themselves from the political sphere and acted as a bridge between the Swedish authorities and Turkish community. In time, rivalries emerged within the Turkish community, not on the basis of political ideology but rather on regionalism or hometown solidarity. For instance, the first Turkish organization assumed a leading role for two decades among the Turkish population, however, the ‘Kulu’ domination over the Turks who migrated from other cities and regions harbored dissatisfaction with the activities that were pursued. In the 1990s, another Turkish umbrella organization was formed by second-generation Turks who wanted to follow a more ‘integration’ and ‘Sweden-oriented’ agenda. The second umbrella organization also had a partisan-free agenda and until very recently has avoided Turkish politics and concentrated on the situation of Turks in Swedish society. A youth organization was also formed by the second -generation Turks, and focused on the problems facing the Turkish youth in Sweden, as well as on the cultivation of Turkish culture. One main observation about the Turkish community in Sweden is that there are no significant satellite organizations of political movements in Turkey. For example, the “Grey Wolves” (youth branch of an ultra-nationalist political party in Turkey) are large migrant movements in Germany and the Netherlands with connections to a nationalist political party in Turkey.25 However, there are no comparable groups in Sweden. While every individual surely has a stance regarding the political issues in Turkey, many have only recently become sufficiently mobilized to be described as a politicized community. Turkish politics has gradually been brought to the organizational agenda because of developments in both Turkey and Sweden. The Kurdish movement’s successful campaigns in Sweden caused some aggression among the Turks, resulting in reactionary responses from Turkish diaspora 22. Ibid. 23. Official Website of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security. http://www.csgb.gov.tr/ csgbPortal/diyih.portal?page=yv&id=1#_ftn8 24. Khayati, From victim diaspora to transborder citizenship. 25. Østergaard –Nielsen, Transnational Politics.; Nell, Transnational migrant politics in the Netherlands.

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

asylum-seekers were mostly of Kurdish origin. Today, migrants from Turkey constitute the tenth-largest migrant group in Sweden. It is estimated that Assyrians and Kurds outnumber ethnic Turks. However, this data is based on various pieces of fieldwork rather than official statistics.22 According to the recent estimates the number of Turkish citizens residing in Sweden is around 67,00023. However, these statistics also include ethnic Kurds who are registered as “Turkish migrants”. Regarding immigrants of Kurdish origin, Khayati suggests there may be some 55,000. However, as these estimates also include individuals of Kurdish origin arriving from other Middle Eastern countries it is difficult to offer an exact figure.24

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members. More than half of the interviewees claimed the first political activities started at the end of the 1980s and lasted throughout the 1990s however these activities were more ad hoc in nature and did not lead to an established structure that could be called a diaspora.

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The Turkish groups only became involved in lobbying activities for homeland issues or promoting homeland politics on political platforms in the 2000s. The so-called diasporic turn that galvanized the Turkish community to become politically mobilized was the ‘Genocide Bill’, passed by the Swedish Parliament in March 2010, approving a resolution recognizing the 1915 mass killing of Armenians in Turkey as genocide. Combined with the ill ease about Kurdish activism, the bill touched the “nationalistic sensitivities of the Turkish community”, as one interviewee put it. The majority of the interviewees perceived the Kurdish diaspora as the driving force behind this recognition process as several Kurdish groups supported the passage of the bill and held demonstrations, before and after, in its favour. Moreover, various politicians with Kurdish backgrounds gave speeches in the Swedish Parliament on this issue. Together, these acts were proof for the Turkish community that a “Kurdish lobby” had played a role throughout the whole process and this heightened the already existing tensions and correspondingly the incentives to mobilize for homeland politics. While the behaviour of the Turkish diaspora was surely affected by the homeland conflict, their discourses also revealed concerns about their situation in Sweden. Second-generation Turkish diaspora members seem to be more active and reactive to the developments in Sweden regarding the Kurdish Question or the Armenian Genocide issue in Turkey. Thus, while the first generation certainly had politically active members, it is the second generation that carries Turkish politics to Swedish political platforms in a way that the first generation previously had never done. The youth organization’s visit to the European Parliament in April 2011 to lobby for the Turkish accession to the EU is an example that illustrates this point.26 Sweden: A Land of Opportunities for the Kurdish Diaspora While small groups of Kurds from the Konya region arrived as labour migrants with the first wave of migration from Turkey, the number of Kurdish immigrants from Turkey rose significantly after the 1971 coup in Turkey. After the 1980 Turkish coup d'état, Kurds fleeing the oppression, non-recognition and persecution in Turkey were accepted as refugees.27 Today, Sweden hosts a comparatively well-educated Kurdish intelligentsia, consisting of journalists, authors, academics, artists and directors who were in exile, and many are active both in Swedish and Kurdish-Turkish politics.28 Kurdish diaspora are highly active in terms of establishing associations and raising their voices on political matters, while the Kurdish identity and traditions are predominately preserved and introduced to the second generation by these associations. Swedish multicultural policies have also been very helpful for the cultivation of the Kurdish identity by supporting civil society organizations and similar types of migrant associations. Because the Swedish system

26. “Isvecli Turkler Avrupa Parlamentosu’nda”, 31 March 2011, http://www.tuf.nu/index.php? option=com_content&task=view&id=1728&Itemid=1203&lang=en (Accessed 25 May 2012). 27. Westin, “Young people of migrant origin in Sweden.” 28. Khayati, From victim diaspora to transborder citizenship.


officially recognized Kurdishness as a separate ethnic identity, the Kurdish movement was able to flourish. The Swedish government financed the publication of books in Kurdish and, at that time, it was the only country to support the Kurdish cause in this way. There is a Kurdish library in Stockholm, sponsored by the government, as well as several Kurdish publishers in Sweden that have published thousands of books and journals drawing attention to the Kurdish cause or to cultural issues.29 With these opportunities, “Kurds find themselves in the position of having to consciously acquire the language and culture, which they have been robbed of by the Turkish state.”30 Therefore, Sweden became a safe haven for Kurds who fled the oppression of their homeland, granting them the opportunity to nurture their culture through the preservation of their traditions and the education of their mother-tongue, which was potentially threatened in Turkey. The Kurdish diaspora in Sweden is acknowledged by many as “The Swedish École” within the Kurdish movement and it is very much respected for its contributions to Kurdish culture and literature. This undoubtedly occurred as a result of various factors such as the profile of the Kurdish migrants in Sweden as well as the Swedish migration policy and its approach to multiculturalism. While Swedish policies were not specifically tailored to the Kurdish diaspora, they provided a space for a people who were oppressed, disadvantaged and deprived of their basic rights in their homeland. The second generation is even more integrated into Swedish society than their parents, but at the same time they are very dedicated to the Kurdish cause; making them a versatile group of people who are interested in both homeland and hostland politics. During our interview, the former president of the oldest Kurdish organization in Sweden, Keya Izol stated that: The second generation have grown up in the shadow of the first generation. The fact that they grew up in Sweden did not spare them from the impact of exile, resistance and political agenda… it became a part of their everyday life…They have a better vision but they take their strength from the first generations’ incredible power for resistance. The Interactions between the First-Generation Turkish and Kurdish Diasporas From the testimonies of the first-generation interviewees and diaspora organization leaders, I learned that there is little communication between the first-generation at the individual and organizational levels. Firstly, the majority of Turks arrived in the 1960s as labour migrants while most of the Kurds arrived after the 1970s as asylum seekers. The Kurds were mainly activists and many were university graduates, or had at least completed high school, whereas the Turks came from rural regions and some were not even literate. Therefore, there was already a social gap between the two communities. Secondly, for a long time the Turkish community was not politically active and thus the Kurdish diaspora did not engage with the Turkish community on political platforms until the 2000s. Some Turkish interviewees mentioned that there was some degree of interaction between the first-generation migrants. Initially, the emergence of the Kurdish movement in Turkey did not prevent the two groups from communicating at an organizational or individual level. The first generations had language, religion or regional affinities in common which created a certain feeling of solidarity until politics drove a wedge between them. Indeed, they were

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29. Van Bruinessen, “The Kurds in Movement”. 30. Griffiths, Somali and Kurdish refugees in London, 141.

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meeting in coffee houses to watch Turkish football games. As one the Turkish interviewees recounted: We would meet, play backgammon, and watch TV together in certain places. When they talked about the Kurdish conflict on the news, we would just change the channel. We could co-exist if we did not talk about politics …but then I don’t know what happened… with time we grew apart.

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

The gradual polarization of the two groups occurred in correlation with the intensification of the conflict between the Turkish state and the PKK. Both groups developed nationalistic sensitivities and certain symbols and discourses started causing discontent such as the Turkish or Kurdish flag, the PKK and its claims, or the territorial integrity of the Turkish state. Initially, the Turkish and Kurdish labour migrants had some degree of contact, as did the Kurdish asylum seekers and the Turkish leftists who also came as asylum seekers. The former president of one of the biggest Kurdish organizations in Sweden said that they had friends from the Turkish community who defined themselves as leftists. While there were some close relations for a time, with the escalation of the conflict these interactions became less common. A leading figure in a Kurdish Women’s organization I interviewed stated that the Kurdish diaspora wanted to disassociate from the Turkish community in order to unite with other Kurds from different parts of Kurdistan, to strengthen national unity. This strategy was to overcome Turkish assimilation policies. This dissociation cannot be analysed without taking into account the particular Swedish context. Sweden is not simply a place where two adversarial migrant groups found themselves in the same physical environment, the fact that one group is the majority and the other is the minority in Turkey and that these roles have been reversed in Sweden is very significant. Due to the opportunities and environment in Sweden, a shift in the “asymmetries of power” between the two groups occurred, and altered the roles played by the groups as “majority” and “minority” in the homeland. With respect to the hegemony of the Turkish state over the Kurds in the homeland, this “traditional” order underwent significant transformation in the diaspora.31 In contrast to Germany, where the Kurdish community became a “minority within a minority”32, the Kurds in Sweden were seen as a distinct ethnic group since the onset of Kurdish migration to Sweden. If one also considers that the number of people of Turkish and Kurdish origin from Turkey in Sweden is almost equal and, moreover, the total number of Kurds from Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Turkey outnumber the Turks, it becomes clear that Sweden presents a starkly different context to Germany and other European countries. The relative and absolute size of the communities allowed the Kurds to completely avoid the Turks. The rejection of the Turkish language and the lack of economic or social dependencies also created a different set of conflict dynamics from those that exist in the homeland. The second-generation Turks and Kurds grew up in a different environment to the first-generation interviewees who had first-hand experience in the homeland including cooperation and co-existence, and thus formed their identity in a different way.

31. Baser, Inherited Conflicts. 32. Østergaard-Nielsen, Transnational Politics.

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The Interactions between the Second-Generation Turkish and Kurdish Diasporas

Mobilizing for Homeland Politics Testimonies of the participants reveal that the Kurdish diaspora principally mobilized due to events in the homeland and explained their reasons for being politically active by stressing the experiences of their parents and relatives with the Turkish state. They framed their discourse within the Kurdish political situation in Turkey. Conversely, the Turkish respondents stated that they only mobilized for homeland politics mostly because of Kurdish activism in Sweden. Their discourses were often framed within their situation in Sweden. Therefore for the Turkish interviewees, the behaviour of the Kurdish diaspora was of major importance, while for the Kurdish interviewees the situation in the homeland was the accelerator motive for diasporization. Most of the Turkish interviewees joined Turkish organisations whilst at high school or university. Aside from those whose parents were already active in these organisations, the reasons given for becoming active members of an organisation varied. Most had very little or no interest in Turkish politics and had joined in order to explore their Turkish identity and take part in integration projects. The majority of my respondents told me that their parents had discouraged their involvement in politics, indeed they had asked them to avoid politics altogether and focus on their studies. They started showing an interest in homeland politics because of developments that affected their lives in Sweden. They decided to unite their efforts to promote Turkish interests because they felt their discursive opportunities in the public and political sphere were hindered by Kurdish diaspora activities. They started blogging about Kurdish activism in Sweden and their support for insurgent groups in Turkey. Increasingly, there were commentaries on newspaper articles related to Turkey, condemning Sweden for letting the Kurdish diaspora show open support for “terrorist organizations.” Website chat rooms that publish articles about the political problem in Turkey became a platform for Turkish and Kurdish politically active youths to have virtual fights.

33. Perrin, “Beyond the core conflict “, 27-28. 34. The “Bogardus social distance scale’ is widely referenced by other scholars when they try to measure social distance between different communities. The scale includes questions in the realm of social relations, willingness to form close kinships like marriages, willingness to become neighbours etc. In this study I also benefit from this approach. Please see: Emory S. Bogardus, "Measuring Social Distances," Journal of Applied Sociology 9 (1925): 299-308.

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

Perrin33 sees several factors as indicative of an imported conflict: social distance, spatial segregation, conflicts at the discursive level and violent confrontations. She argues that even the lack of contact among adversary communities should be seen as an act of avoidance and thus evidence of transported conflict. Social distance34 refers to the situation where two ethnic groups do not mix with each other in daily life. The frequency of interactions is low and social ties are cut or kept to a minimum. Spatial segregation refers to the situation of two ethnic communities voluntarily or involuntarily physically segregated from each other. Conflicts at the discursive level indicate that there are verbal attacks between the members of two groups that may or may not escalate into violent confrontations. In the following pages, I demonstrate first the reasons behind the second-generations’ interest in homeland politics and then I focus on the factors that indicate conflict import as described above.

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Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

In terms of political affiliations, the Turkish community in Sweden is not homogenous. These differences of opinions however, do not cause segregation within the youth community. They have harmonized their ideological differences and established a shared opinion regarding the Kurdish conflict in Turkey and in Sweden. They wished to establish a political position that was not considered “inferior” to the Kurds in the eyes of Swedish policy makers, media and the general public. A concern with protecting the image of the Turkish community prevailed over ideological differences. There is no significant mass support for groups linked to political parties or movements in Turkey. Instead, a vast majority of the interviewees invested their time and energy in Swedish political parties.

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The Kurdish participants’ motivations for mobilization were very different to those of the Turkish interviewees. There was no mention of Turkish activism in Sweden; their political interest and efforts were directed towards Turkey and its policies regarding Kurds. The high level of activism related to homeland politics does not mean that the Kurdish second generation was not active in Swedish politics. Indeed it can be argued that they were more active in Swedish and Turkish-Kurdish politics than their Turkish counterparts. Of the Kurdish respondents, the descendants of politically active Kurds demonstrated the greatest interest in the Kurdish cause. They had attended seminars, meetings, and demonstrations since they were young, and, due to their parents’ status as asylum seekers, the Kurdish political situation in Turkey was a part of their lives. Many respondents said it was often the subject of “dinner-table conversations” with their parents. The level of involvement was higher if one of their parents had personal experience of prison, torture, or discrimination as a result of their Kurdish background or Kurdish nationalist activities. Only a few respondents whose parents came from the Konya region as labour migrants in the 196070s stated that their parents were not very politically active in Sweden and that they had been recruited by Kurdish activists recruited while at university. The diaspora organisations also play an important role for the mobilization of the Kurdish youth. They are making a particular effort to mobilize young Kurds by organising concerts, language and history courses, all of which are aimed at strengthening the Kurdish identity. Specific personal experiences also affected the Kurdish interviewees in terms of their perceptions of ethnic identity. One respondent recounted a childhood memory from the 1990s when, during his first visit to Turkey, he went to a wedding in a village in Konya and Turkish soldiers interrupted the event to check the identification of the guests. He said: “At that moment, I understood why my parents had migrated to Sweden. Being Kurdish in Turkey was a crime.” The majority of my respondents had, or still have, relatives who joined the PKK as armed fighters. Being politically active appeared to be an unspoken “duty,” in honour of their parents, or those who were left behind. The Kurdish diaspora is also vulnerable to inter-group rivalries. There are many different perspectives about what the movement’s strategy should be towards the Kurdish issue. Like the Turkish community, the second-generation Kurdish diaspora in Sweden has also managed to unite around a core issues, regardless of ideological differences: ameliorating the situation for Kurds in Kurdistan. This common ground has created a well-functioning system that enabled them to channel their energy into a cause that satisfies all the groups within the


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Shifting the Assimilation-Resistance Paradigm in the Diaspora The identity-maintenance of a group involves criteria for determining membership and exclusion. Ethnicity is not primarily conceived as the interactions between pre-defined groups, but as a process of recreating groups by identifying the boundaries between them.35 In this case, the diaspora became the transnational space in which these two groups reproduced their social boundaries with respect to the situation in Turkey. They reproduced a collective memory based on experiences from both the homeland and hostland. The secondgeneration Turks and Kurds were born into a political and social context where both ethnic identities are recognized, and more importantly recognized as “equal”; where each had the right to mother tongue education, to form associations, and freedom of speech. Moreover, the majority-minority relationship in the homeland had undergone a significant change i.e. the second-generation Kurds have no experience of living as a minority under Turkish domination. In Sweden both groups were minorities and the Swedish system did not differentiate between the two groups in terms of granting rights and opportunities. Therefore, in Sweden the situation is very different to that of the homeland: a Turkish community disappointed to have lost its hierarchy over the Kurds and a Kurdish community that has gained its self-confidence and resists the imposition of a hegemonic identity. Analysing the formation of the “other” in South Asian communities in London, Gayer explains that diaspora groups can build confidence in their new diasporic spaces to form a separate identity, replacing the one imposed by the home or host country. In doing so, they reconstruct their uniqueness by stressing the differences from their constructed other to finally “be themselves.”36 This account also applies to the Kurdish diaspora’s situation, which gave them the freedom for boundary drawing to cultivate their own Kurdish identity. This process required that they focus on their differences and limit their interactions with the Turkish community, as demonstrated by the Kurdish diaspora’s use of opportunity structures within the host country to counter the “Turkish identity”. The Turkish respondents mentioned the common history of Turks and Kurds and focused on shared aspects of identity and culture such as religion or their migrant background. While they tried to underline the commonalities between themselves and Kurds, the Kurdish respondents formed mutually exclusive identities by reconstructing and deconstructing historical narratives, past experiences, and official statements of the Turkish state. In spite of the Turkish respondents’ references to common customs and traditions, the Kurdish interviewees argued that these similarities stem from the Turkish “invasion” of Kurdistan and described the diaspora’s duty to “right” these historical “wrongs.” A unique part of Kurdish identity boundary development in Sweden is that the diaspora Kurds were particularly careful with their use of the Kurdish language. Griffiths argues that:

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

diaspora. The majority of respondents said they are “trying to unite Kurdistan” in Sweden by sustaining a sort of plurality in the movement. Despite the intra-group disagreements, the public face of the Kurdish diaspora in Sweden is always portrayed as united and strong.

35. Wimmer, “Elementary strategies of ethnic boundary making”. 36. Gayer, “The volatility of the ‘other’”.

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Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

“Acquisition of the Kurdish language is seen as central to restoring the sense of national integrity,” and that conscious acquisition of the language and culture are a part of the Kurdish elite’s strategy to foster Kurdish nationalism.37 The testimonies of the interviewees shot that the majority of the first generation Kurdish migrants refused to teach their children Turkish – the “language of the oppressor.” The mother-tongue education offered by the Swedish school system allows the Kurdish diaspora to improve conditions for the cultivation of the Kurdish language and identity, protecting it from Turkish influence. Aydın claims that in the process of limiting the unity of identity and culture, Kurds may follow two patterns. First, they posit the cultural differences against the hegemonic culture, and second, they create cultural homogenization within their own community.38 These objectives have been achieved in Sweden and Kurds have separated their political, social and economic spheres from the Turkish community, and distanced themselves from the Turkish language or Turkish music and in some cases even from Islam – as they see it as a tool of manipulation used by the Turks and Arabs. Their boundary drawing excludes Turks as far as possible, while including Kurds from other parts of Kurdistan. Confrontations at the Discursive Level, Social Distance and Spatial Segregation Interviewees from both groups acknowledged that verbal confrontations between the two groups start at an early age, usually at school. Verbal aggression tends to occur when they are young and these early experiences gradually develop into social distance and mutual avoidance. From the testimonies, the two main themes that frequently came up throughout the interviews were the word Kurdistan and the approach to the PKK. In Sweden, Kurds will refer to their homeland as ‘Kurdistan’, not ‘Turkey’ or ‘Turkish Kurdistan’. Both Kurds and Turks had developed sensitivities about this term within their own spheres for different reasons. For the Turks, the word suggested “separation” and rekindled the “separation-phobia” among the Turkish community. With the exception of one interviewee, who defined himself as a leftist, the respondents were against the use of this word both in Turkey and in Sweden. As one interviewee explained: Every time I hear that word I understand that they want to divide Turkey. I love Turkey very much and I don’t want it to be divided. Even if you refer to a region, when you say Kurdistan, in my mind it means separation and I am sure the Turkish state will not let this happen. The majority of the Turkish interviewees believed that the “real Kurds” in Turkey do not want to be separated and it is only the “diaspora Kurds in Sweden” who have these utopic ideas. Their “others” were in the diaspora, not in the homeland. As a Turkish respondent said: The land they refer to as Kurdistan is a part of Turkey and I love south-eastern Turkey, I love the people there. Last summer I was there and they treated me really nicely. I do not understand the Kurds in the diaspora and their obsession with separation. According to various respondents, the diaspora was not representative of the Kurdish population in Turkey. Their prejudices and antagonisms were targeted at the diaspora Kurds 37. Griffiths, Somali and Kurdish refugees in London, 139-141. 38. Aydin, Mobilizing the Kurds in Turkey, 2.

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rather than Kurds in general, and their references always addressed the Swedish context rather than Turkey. They recognized the Kurdish identity as a separate identity but there is a common trend of not recognizing “a Kurdish homeland” as it overlaps with their imagined borders of “a Turkish homeland.” Consequently, the Kurdish flag and Kurdish national anthem were also sources of discontent among the Turkish community.

A member of UNGKURD explained what happens whenever he says he is from Kurdistan: I say I am from Kurdistan. They ask me where it is. Each time I know there will be a second question, but I say it anyway. It is not my fault that our country has been divided by artificial borders. The fact that it is a forbidden word in Turkey makes it even more loaded and the young members of the diaspora perceive it as part of the Kurdish struggle for recognition. Another key issue that divides the two ethnic groups is their positions towards the PKK. As the Turkish respondents generally believe “almost all Kurds support the PKK in Sweden”, it can be problematic for their interactions with Kurds in Sweden. This stance against the PKK unites diaspora members who support different political parties or ideologies within the Turkish diaspora. Respondents were disturbed by the fact that the Swedish authorities do not put more pressure on the Kurdish organizations and media when it comes to the PKK: The PKK is a terrorist organization. It is internationally accepted as one. So why does Sweden let these people go around with Öcalan39 posters? There are also Swedish MPs who spread PKK propaganda from the Riksdag. With regards to the Kurdish participants, in general it can be said that the majority of the participants had enormous respect for the PKK: The PKK wants something good, wants something beautiful between Turks and Kurds. I can understand everything that Öcalan says, it all makes sense. He wants peace; I want peace. I don’t want to hurt anybody. The majority of the participants justified their sentiments about this by mentioning that the PKK had made the Kurdish issue visible in the international arena. According to many, if it were not for the PKK the international community would ignore the Kurdish situation in

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

On the other hand, for the Kurds, “Kurdistan” is a very loaded word. Being able to say “I come from Kurdistan” is a liberating sentence for the Kurds, as one of my interviewees stated: “it feels like an uprising in one sentence.” In this vein, referring to the Kurds as a community “from Turkey” is controversial for the Kurds in Sweden. One interviewee’s response is worth mentioning: You are offending us when you say Iraqi Kurdistan, Turkish Kurdistan… There is nothing Turkish about Kurdistan. You should say Northern Kurdistan…” he added: “Kurdistan existed before. Kurdish people lived there for 7000 years. The land belongs to them, but not the borders. It belongs to the Kurdish people but it is not owned by the Kurdish people.

39. The leader of the PKK.

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Turkey. The interviewees asserted that “the Turks have their army and the Kurds have the PKK.” Among the interviewees, there were various Kurds who were critical of the PKK’s activities and approach to the Kurdish situation, yet they said they would still offer their full support and would defend it “against the Turks.”

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

Competition and conflict between groups enables boundary maintenance and group solidarity. In both groups there were differences in terms of ideology, religion and other matters however they managed to overcome these to reach their goals. The Turkish-Kurdish conflict in the homeland as well as the Turkish-Kurdish political competition in the hostland undoubtedly contributed to this process. Both groups maintained their boundaries and social distance from the other at the individual level.

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The majority of Turkish and Kurdish respondents admitted to having very few friends from the other group. As children they had some contact with each other, but as they grew up and became politically active the distance grew. Some Turkish respondents argued that: “someone who supports a terrorist group cannot be my friend.” Others said it would be hard to communicate with people who “want to divide their country.” The testimonies indicated the assumption that Kurds were always hostile to them. One interviewee suggested reasons for the social distance between the two groups: I think the Kurds grew up with the idea of revenge. But the Turks did not care at all. I don’t even remember one occasion that my parents talked about the Kurds or the Kurdish question at home. An interviewee offered his opinion: There used to be class differences between the Turks and Kurds. Kurds would not hang out with Turks because they were not intellectual enough for them. But now… there is blood that divides us. We have our martyrs and they also have lost some family members to the war I guess. The Turkish interviewees expressed their scepticism about Kurds and their assumption that all Kurds in Sweden support the PKK, which they consider a “terrorist organisation.” They often made a distinction between the “diaspora Kurds” and the “real Kurds” (Kurds in Turkey). The Kurdish community in Sweden is seen as an outlying “community of extremists and supporters of terrorism”. The first-generation Kurds, as asylum seekers and refugees, were redefined in the interviews as people who had committed “wrongs” in Turkey. Many interviewees stressed they had nothing against the Kurds, but emphasized the particularity of the situation in Sweden, which has what they describe as “extremist Kurds”. Regarding their relationships and social interactions with the Turkish community on an individual level, the Kurdish respondents answered similarly. Many said that they have no problems with the Turkish people, only with the Turkish state. During the interviews, however, statements about “fascist Turks who support the state’s policies” or “Kemalist Turks who are against Kurdish rights” arose frequently, which revealed the importance of defining the enemy as an ethnic group. Many claimed that: “all Turks are fascists” or “all Turks dislike Kurds.” From the interviews I saw that there is very little dialogue between the two groups at the individual level on political or indeed any other issues. For example, one


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interviewee asked: “How would a Turk react to an Öcalan poster in my home? If I cannot invite them to my home, how can I call them a friend?”

The interviews revealed that the two groups’ prejudices and mistrust also affects their choice of spouse. Skrbis argues that “the marriage market” is an indicator of contentions between diaspora ethnic groups. He explains a diaspora member’s perception of marriage with someone from the same ethnic background as an insurance policy against losing his or her cherished social and cultural homogeneity. While looking at Serbian-Croat relationships, he found that even the most liberal interviewees had very negative opinions about marrying someone from the antagonistic group.40 When I asked my interviewees if they would consider marrying a member of the other group, the answer was a resounding “no”. Both groups favoured intra-group marriages. Indeed, folk dance nights, ethnic festivals, concerts and picnics as well as migrant association meetings serve as occasions for singles to find suitable spouses from the same ethnic background. Most of the Kurds said they would never consider marrying a Turk, but even if they did have a Turkish partner, they would find it very difficult to introduce him/her to their parents. Many Kurdish participants argued that marrying a Turk would present significant problems in the future because they refused to speak Turkish and would not want their children to speak what they saw as the “language of assimilation.” The majority of the Turks said marrying a Kurd would not pose a problem unless their partner supported the PKK or secession from Turkey. For the Turks, a Kurdish partner would only be acceptable if she/he respects the territorial integrity of Turkey and national symbols such as the Turkish flag. Apart from forming close relationships, interviewees from both groups were also sceptical about business relationships with each other. As other studies have demonstrated, in other European countries such as Germany and the UK41, Turks and Kurds manage to form business partnerships despite their political differences, but this seems unlikely in Sweden. The testimonies showed that the interviewees would not be happy working with someone “who denies the existence of Kurdistan”, “who supports the PKK”, “who calls the PKK a terrorist organization” or “who insults Turkey”. Interactions at the Organizational Level: Mutual avoidance Moving beyond the scope of individual relations to organisational interactions offers a broader understanding of the conflict between the diasporas. As with interactions at the individual level, there is almost no communication between the two groups at the organisational level. To my knowledge, there are no joint declarations, no co-organised

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

In addition to their political position, they referenced memories from their childhood in which they had had altercations with their Turkish peers. Many mentioned experiences at school when they first talked about being “from Kurdistan” and the negative reactions they received from their Turkish classmates. These experiences convinced the Kurdish respondents that Turks and Kurds were unable to get along. Interviewees from both groups had a tendency to stereotype the other group and to perceive it as a monolithic entity.

40. Skrbis, “Nationalism in a transnational context.” 41. Baser, Inherited Conflicts.

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events, or petitions among the first-generation Turkish and Kurdish organisations. The panels organised by Kurdish organisations did not invite representatives from Turkish organisations. The case was the same for the Turkish panels and seminars. I illustrate this point with an example involving the intention of Turkish association members to celebrate the Newroz (a festival that has gained a political character as a result of the Kurdish movement using it to mobilize the masses) together with the Kurdish groups.

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The Turkish youth organisation invited the Kurdish associations to a Newroz gathering but the Kurds, who wanted to celebrate Newroz only with other Kurds, rejected the invitation. The Turkish interviewee admitted that he was relieved they had declined the invitation as he had concerns about the two groups getting together. He suggested that disputes would have been inevitable and added his concerns about members of his organisation protesting about an event with the Kurds. On the other hand, the Kurdish respondents said that they interpreted the invitation as part of the Turkish official policy aiming to “Turkify Newroz” and, therefore, did not wish to celebrate this traditional festival with the Turks. They described the “absurdness” of this idea because, first, they could not conceive of celebrating without the Kurdish flag, which the Turks would not consent to and, secondly, other members of the associations would not accept it, especially due to the symbolic meaning of the festival. Both groups are aware of the mutual lack of communication and want it to continue, so as to avoid further possible tension between the groups and negative reactions from their own constituencies. A shared migrant background has the potential to bring these communities together, which could be the basis for an umbrella identity encompassing an ethno-national identity. Most of the respondents from both groups stated that the common “migrant background experience” is not relevant for establishing a better relationship, unless a Swedish umbrella organisation were to unite them behind one project. Respondents from both sides indicated the improbability of Turkish and Kurdish organizations initiating a shared common integration or anti-discrimination project in Sweden. To address this possibility, one of the Kurdish interviewees stated: “Nothing is bad enough in Sweden to make us form an alliance with the Turks. If we have to, we will choose Swedish racism over Turkish assimilation.” As the interviewee accounts reveal, coping with experiences of discrimination did not prevail over inter-ethnic tensions in Sweden. Can “Negative Peace” Turn Violent in Sweden? My interviews with the leaders of both diaspora associations show that none of the groups condoned violence against the other community. The former president of the Kurdish association stated that one of the main reasons for the lack of violence was that the elites of both groups discourage this and secondly the Swedish integration policies are much better than in other European countries and it is difficult for extremists to recruit people to their cause. Similarly, the leader of a Turkish diaspora organization said the following: There are no ultra-nationalist Turkish groups here that organize attacks on Kurds or Kurdish organizations. If we have a problem, we communicate with the Kurdish organizations or Swedish authorities. That is the way to do things in Sweden…violence is unacceptable.


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While interviewing the second generation, I came across new concepts mentioned both by the Turkish and Kurdish respondents: Swedish values, Swedish mentality, and the Swedish way. The majority of the second-generation Turks and Kurds used these terms to explain how they cope with conflicts at the individual or community level, and to make their voices and grievances heard. Many juxtaposed several concepts while defining the so-called Swedish way: democracy, equality, tolerance, respect for others, avoiding conflict, freedom of speech, respecting the ideas of others, and, finally, the belief that violence never works. The respondents frequently mentioned the principle of mobilizing in a collective manner in order to raise awareness and lodge collective complaints. Based on the interviews, it seems that the second generations’ mentality about conflict management is strongly shaped by their socialization in Sweden. I illustrate two examples from my interviews with members of both groups: For me, Swedish values accept every kind of opinion. You have the freedom to think anything you want. In Sweden you have no fear of your thoughts, and no one should have a fear of expressing himself or herself. (Kurdish interviewee) The Swedish way is the only way. We have to apply this to all problems we have. You get organised, go to your destination and make a collective complaint to make your voice heard. I think this is the best way. (Turkish interviewee) The majority of the interviewees said they would never resort to violence to solve their conflicts with the members of the opposite group because “it is not the right way” and it is not “acceptable” in Sweden. The leaders of the organisations also mentioned that if any violent protest or counter protest occurs in Sweden, they are sure that their activities will be criminalized, jeopardising the state subsidies they receive and their reputations in the eyes of Swedish society. Therefore, they adapt their discourses to the Swedish way. The diaspora groups had internalized this idea and framed their strategies accordingly. All the arguments, grievances, and even antagonisms are channelled and institutionalized in harmony with the Swedish system. The diaspora elite, in particular, played an important role in calming aggressive stances and sustaining unified action by prioritizing “protecting the group image” above all else. Conclusion In the literature, there has been a growing tendency to focus on the attachments of diaspora groups to the homeland and their role in conflicts. However, the subject of conflict-import to the host country and the interactions between the rival groups, especially with a focus on the

Diasporas and Imported Conflicts: Turkish and Kurdish Second-Generation Diasporas in Sweden

It also appears that the Kurdish diaspora in Sweden consists of certain elites who prefer to make cultural and linguistic contributions to the Kurdish cause. There have been almost no violent demonstrations organized by Kurdish diaspora in Sweden (unlike in Germany where highways were blocked and embassies were invaded). There are also no arson attacks on Turkish and Kurdish properties. This has a lot to do with the approach of both diaspora organizations and secondly with the Swedish system that enables migrants to bring their demands to political platforms through conventional methods such as lobbying. This line of thinking was echoed by the second-generation interviewees, suggesting to me that collective violence between the two diasporas seems very improbable in Sweden.

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second generation, has been understudied. This paper’s main contribution is that it demonstrates how homeland conflicts move into the diaspora and that each diffusion results in a different form – depending on the hostland context as well as the profile of the migrants themselves. One of the main aims of this paper was to analyse the political mobilization of the second generation and contribute to previous discussions on this subject. It clearly shows that diasporic mobilization is not a single generation phenomenon. The second generation shows an interest in creating transnational ties for various reasons, such as the political background of their parents, their individual experiences in the homeland and hostland, or the efforts of diaspora elites and organisations. Although the conflict dynamics are transmitted to the second generation, they reconstruct the conflict through the prism of their experiences in the host country. Therefore, while the roots of the contentions originate in the homeland, the ways of expressing dissent originate in the host country.

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In Sweden the majority of the interviewees displayed an attitude of strong enmity, but they did not engage in violence. However, there is a complete separation of social, political and economic spaces and interactions between the two groups. The Kurds used the political opportunities in Sweden to benefit from boundary drawing mechanisms, and have distinguished themselves from the Turks at every possible turn. A confluence of factors, such as the small size of the communities and separating shared values of language and culture, helped the Kurdish diaspora to reverse the impact of Turkish hegemony on their culture and identity. The fact that Kurds outnumber Turks in Sweden has reversed their minority-majority position in Turkey, and this change of status in Sweden has helped build the confidence of the second generation in rejecting Turkish hegemony. The interviewees have a high level of trust in the Swedish system in terms of providing space for claims-making. This could explain the absence of violent encounters between the two groups to some extent, and it seems unlikely that the contentions between the two groups will turn violent in the foreseeable future. While this situation is preferable for the host country, as it does not threaten public order, it is possible that the mistrust and social polarization between the two groups will increase with every successive generation. As long as the homeland conflict persists, the political context will have repercussions on the Turkish and Kurdish communities abroad in various forms.


Bibliography Adamson, F., “Constructing the diaspora: Diaspora identity politics and transnational social movements”, paper presented at the annual meeting of the ISA's 49th annual convention, San Francisco, CA, USA, 2008. Aydin, D., Mobilizing the Kurds in Turkey: Newroz as a myth, MA Thesis, Ankara, Middle East Technical University, 2005. Baser, B., Inherited conflicts: Spaces of contention between Turkish and Kurdish secondgeneration diasporas in Sweden and Germany. PhD Thesis, Florence, European University Institute, 2012. Batta, A., Refugee integration, long distance nationalism, and refugee-related violence: When myths become reality, Denton, TX, University of North Texas, Department of Political Science, 2007. Brown, G. S., Coping with long-distance nationalism: Inter-ethnic conflict in diaspora context, Austin, PhD thesis, The University of Texas, 2004. Brubaker, R., “The ‘diaspora’ diaspora”, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 28(1), 2005. Butler, K. D., “Defining Diaspora, Refining a Discourse”, Diaspora, 10:2, 2001. Cohen, R., “Diasporas and the nation state: From victims to challengers”, International Affairs, 72(3), 1996. Demmers, J., “Diaspora and Conflict: Locality, long-distance nationalism, and delocalisation of conflict dynamics”, The Public, 9(1), 2002. Gayer, L., “The volatility of the ‘other’: Identity formation and social interaction in diasporic environments”, South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal , 2007. Griffiths, D. J., Somali and Kurdish refugees in London: New identities in the diaspora, London: Ashgate, 2002. Khayati, K., From victim diaspora to transborder citizenship? Diaspora formation and transnational relations among Kurds in France in Sweden. PhD thesis, Linköping University, 2008 . Lyons T. and Mandaville P., “Think Locally, Act Globally: Toward a Transnational Comparative Politics”, International Political Sociology, Vol. 4, 2010,. Mohammad-Arif. A., and Moliner C., “Introduction. Migration and constructions of the other: Inter-communal relationships amongst South Asian diasporas”, South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal, 2007. Nell, L. M., Transnational migrant politics in the Netherlands: Historical structures and current events, PhD Thesis, Universiteit van Amsterdam, 2008. Østergaard-Nielsen, E., Transnational Politics: Turks and Kurds in Germany, London /New York: Routledge, 2003. Perrin, N., “Beyond the core conflict: new minorities, new confrontations & new policies”, Final report of the research project “International Civil Society forum on conflicts (INFOCON)”, 2010. Shain, Y. & Barth A., “Diasporas and International Relations Theory”, International Organization, Vol.57, No.3, 2003. Skrbis, Z., “Nationalism in a transnational context: Croatian diaspora, intimacy and nationalist imagination”, Sociological Review, (3-4), 2001. Van Bruinessen, M., “The Kurds in movement: Migrations, mobilisations, communications and the globalisation of the Kurdish question”, Working paper no. 14, Islamic Area Studies Project, Japan, 1999.

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Westin, C., “Young people of migrant origin in Sweden”, International Migration Review, (37:4), 2003,. Wimmer, A., “Elementary strategies of ethnic boundary making”, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 31(6), 2008. Zunzer, W., “Potential peace actors outside their homeland”, New Routes: Journal of Peace Research and Action, 10(1), 2005.

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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Twenty Years of Western Military Intervention: An Emerging Trend for International Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding By Kawser Ahmed*

Abstract Military intervention is not new and has occurred historically for three reasons: to secure national interests, to respond to humanitarian crises, and to support allies. However, in the aftermath of the post-Cold War, such interventions are now the norm of international conflict resolution. Although supported by humanitarian aid programs, these interventions are considered dubious since their end results are questionable. Responsibility to Protect (R2P) aims to provide the legal and moral grounds for intervention. Traditionally, the military plans and executes interventions, while the civilian component responsible for reconstruction/development joins later. Consequently, most components of the intervention are military-led events. This paper argues that military interventions are the norm of international conflict resolution. It analyzes recent military interventions and utilizes the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) model to propose that, concurrent with military operations, civilian-led peacebuilding should be undertaken for a successful and sustainable intervention. Finally, this paper outlines three specific peacebuilding works within civil-military cooperation that should comprise future interventions. Keywords: Military intervention, responsibility to protect (R2P), international conflict, UN, peacebuilding, Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) CDSS University of Manitoba Canada www.cesran.org E-mail: umahme33@cc.umanitoba.ca * Born in Bangladesh, Kawser Ahmed is a PhD candidate in Arthur V. Mauro Centre for Peace and Justice Studies, University of Manitoba, Canada. He is a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Canada doctoral fellow, and is currently working as a research associate in the Centre for Defense and Security Studies (CDSS) in the University of Manitoba. He served in the United Nations Mission for the Referendum of Western Sahara as a peacekeeper.

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol. 3| No. 2 October 2013


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Introduction and Background In the beginning of 2013, we witnessed yet another military intervention in Mali, as reflected in the Huffington Post headline, “Mali Intervention: Canada's Bill At $18.6 million, Top Soldier Says.” It seems that Western nations, including Canada, have not lost an appetite for intervention. However, 20 or more years from now, most historians in the West, if not globally, are likely to label the last 20 years or so as the age of American supremacy—or, to employ Charles Krauthammer’s 1990 phrase, the American “unipolar moment.” He argued that the “moment” would last a generation or so.1 Indeed, if Krauthammer’s prediction is correct, then we are at or nearing the end of an era or system that generated the fundamental conditions for Western military intervention in far-flung conflicts across the globe. Some historians are also likely to label the current era as the era of Western military intervention: a unique period in international relations.2 This is not to suggest that Western military intervention is a new phenomenon. Indeed, Western military intervention has gone hand in glove with the evolution of the modern European state system since its origins and has been the prime force behind the globalization of this system since at least the 17th century (Levite, Jentleson, and Berman 1992; Hehir 1998).3 While the political product of that intervention, European empires, passed with the wave of decolonialization after World War II, Great Power or Superpower intervention in different forms has not disappeared from international politics, whether ethically justifiable on the ground of “domestic turmoil threatens regional or international security”4 or in the advent of exigencies of fighting global war on terror5 (Ikenberry 2002). Since the end of the Cold War, Western military intervention has again taken a different form from its predecessors. Indeed, the first bookend of this period, the 1991 Gulf War, is not just a symbolic indicator of the end of the Cold War, but a clear empirical example of a new era, with new forces at play6 (Stedman 1992). In this regard, most observers have assigned President George H. Bush’s long forgotten phrase of a “New World Order” to the dustbin of history, or treated it with patent cynicism.7 Yet, his idea of a New World Order—premised

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

C. Krauthammer, “The Unipolar Moment”, 23. F.S. Pearson and R.A. Baumann, International Military Intervention. A. Roberts, “A New Age In International Relations”. T.G. Weiss and K.M. Campbell, “Military Humanitarianism”. A. Levite, B.W. Jentleson, and L. Berman, Foreign Military Intervention. J. B Hehir, Military Intervention and National Sovereignty. S. Hoffman, “Politics and Ethics of Military Intervention”, 29. G. J. Ikenberry, “America’s Imperial Ambition”, 44. S. J. Stedman, “The New Interventionists”. D. W. Drezner, “The New World Order”.


upon a Wilsonian notion of an international harmony of interests amongst the global community of sovereign states and reflected in the first truly successful employment of Chapter Seven of the United Nations Charter8 in responding to Iraq’s act of aggression against Kuwait—set the stage for successive Western-led military interventions under the mandate of the Security Council. Of course, not all interventions received unanimous approval of the member nations of the United Nations – Kosovo is a clear example. The UN Security Council, representing the will of the international community, did not respond as many had hoped it would or should to conflicts, such as Rwanda and today Syria; nor has the international community’s response been quick or adequate enough to forestall disaster entirely, as is evident in Bosnia, Sierra Leone, and Darfur/Sudan. However, the pattern of intervention in the last two decades can be categorized by the prevalent geo-political reality: 1990–2000 was a decade of intervention to stop genocide and humanitarian suffering. This period was followed, from 2001–2010, with a decade of the war on terrorism and its related interventions; finally, from 2011 onwards, a new era of intervention has emerged to support popular uprisings to oust failing/oppressive regimes. Nonetheless, it is remarkable and unique in the history of the international system that the overwhelming majority of Western-led interventions have received the “international mandate of heaven” and this speaks not only to this distinct era of intervention, but also to the New World Order. This new era is also hallmarked by a fundamental reversal from the Cold War era in which the Superpowers in general, and the West and the United States in particular, intervened through a variety of direct and indirect means for reasons driven nearly exclusively by the perceptions of the Cold War. In the Cold War era, both Superpowers turned a blind eye to the behaviour of their respective dictators on the periphery, and both justified their actions in humanitarian rhetoric. In the new era, humanitarian rhetoric became translated into reality and narrow, naked political and strategic self-interest has truly been joined by universal humanitarian values; in some cases, self-interest itself has taken a backseat, unless of course one considers doing the right thing as consistent with value-driven self-interest.9 Most indicative of this new era is the Report of the Canadian-sponsored International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty,10 and the codification of its recommendations with the UN’s adoption of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) principle in 2005.11 The objective is not to undermine state sovereignty, but rather to legitimize intervention by the international community when the fundamental responsibility of the state to protect its citizens fails.12 It was in many ways the logical next step following the 8.

Chapter VII: Action With Respect to Threats to The Peace, Breaches of The Peace, and Acts of Aggression: Article 39 and Article 41. For details see http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/ chapter7.shtml [accessed 01 February 2013]. 9. A.K Talentino, Intervention After the Cold War. 10. “Core Documents: Understanding RtoP”. For source see http://responsibilitytoprotect.org/index.php/ about-rtop/core-rtop-documents [Accessed 11 January 2013]. 11. Sixty-third session, Agenda items 44 and 107, “Recalling the 2005 World Summit Outcome, 1 especially paragraphs 138 and 139 thereof, 1. Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General and of the timely and productive debate organized by the President of the General Assembly on the responsibility to protect, held on 21, 23, 24 and 28 July 2009, 3 with full participation by Member States; 2. Decides to continue its consideration of the responsibility to protect.” For source see http:// www.responsibilitytoprotect.org/index.php/ [Accessed 11 January 2013]. 12. Op. Cit.

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failures of the preceding years: focusing upon preventing or stopping genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and ethnic cleansing. In a sense, codification, despite its inherent ambiguity in identifying when such events or crimes reach a condition for R2P intervention (i.e., the international community will “know them when they see them”), is not just about the international community, but as much about the presence of these values within the national decision-making calculus. This feature is one of the major factors that has made the last 20 years of Western military intervention unique. As a reflection of past successes and failures, R2P also provides an initial answer to the question of “whose rights” are being protected (for example, state rights and responsibilities, the rights and responsibilities of the international community, or the rights of ethnic individuals and groups). It is relatively rare for these rights to be in alignment. Each example of intervention or non-intervention dictates a need to examine closely the balance and trade-offs between whose rights are at stake, especially in considering the underlying just war principles of proportionality and reasonable prospect of success without doing greater harm (Fixdal and Smith 1998; Butler 2003 Cited in Gent 2007). If the R2P paves the way of military intervention, what comes next is to execute a “meaningful” intervention. By “meaningful,” I refer to the long-term implication of the intervention. For example, if the Western military intervention in Libya was intended to get rid of the dictator and install democracy (although democracy has many shapes and forms) in this oil-rich region, then certain measures must be planned and supported to achieve those goals from the first day of the intervention planning. In the same vein, if an intervention in Afghanistan was planned to get rid of the Taliban, then all measures that would enable the post-intervened Afghanistan to resist Taliban must be embedded into the planning and execution process of the intervention. I refer to these measures as peacebuilding measures in this paper. Peacebuilding measures include efforts geared towards building institutions, trust and relationships, securing legitimacy, and aiding to restructure the political system so that once the interveners depart the system does not relapse.13 That is why, during strategic planning, a civil-military collaborative effort must take place so that peacebuilding measures become complementary to military objectives within a clear and achievable time frame. In most cases, there is an absence of proper civil-military working mechanisms that leads to “adhockery” and co-opting civilian experts comes into play only as-needed. But development experts need to implement peacebuilding measures, and their projects must be properly synchronized with military operations, as development work continues once military forces depart. Iraq and Afghanistan interventions support this observation. In this paper, I put forward two arguments. First, the present trend of military intervention is indicative of a new norm in international conflict resolution that increasingly responds to, and is driven by, the demands of humanitarian needs. I shall also briefly discuss R2P in this regard. Second, I suggest the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) model for civil-military cooperation in intervention serves as a model that, if integrated with my proposed strategic peacebuilding model, might help in the planning and execution of future military interventions. 13. Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacebuilding, 7,8. John Paul Lederach, The Moral Imagination: The Art and Soul of Building Peace, 34.

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Classic realist explanations of intervention as a function of political and strategic self-interests remain useful, as evidenced in the U.S.-led interventions in the Gulf War, Afghanistan, and Iraq. These interests have also been present among other Western states that have joined “coalitions of the willing,” most recently France in Libya. Moreover, one can readily suggest that for Great Britain, Canada and also the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), these interests have been paramount relative to their vital strategic relationships with the United States, and the potential political capital that can be accrued in participating in U.S.-led interventions.14 As Jamie Shea so presciently noted, NATO had to go “out of area or out of business”15. NATO’s involvement in Afghanistan has motivated it to ponder over the strategy of “collective defense without borders (the new Article 5)”.16 However, if willing participation of most of the members in military intervention (within or without the ambit of the UN Security Council) is absent then the likelihood of intervention would be nearly zero – as seen in the case of Syria. At the same time, there have been interventions where the United States has taken a backseat, such as initially in the former Yugoslavia, or more recently in Libya. Canada’s intervention under the UN mandate in the case of the former Yugoslavia might even be suggested as a simple “hangover” of its self-ascribed Cold War peacekeeping mission prior to that change of mission. But, Canada’s intervention through the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) spoke in some ways to the beginnings of a significant transformation of motives for Western military intervention. Looking at many of the interventions of the past 20 years—for example, Somalia, East Timor, Afghanistan after the overthrow of the Taliban, and even Bosnia and Kosovo—narrow, political-strategic self-interest provides at best a partial explanation. Indeed, the end of the Cold War relegated most of the world to the periphery of Western self-interest, rather than as hotly contested strategic battlegrounds in the Cold War balance of power. What did Somalia and East Timor really matter for the self-interest of the U.S. and the West? Indeed, the failure of the Somalia mission and the continuing instability in the country speaks of the strategic irrelevance of realist worldview, as the U.S. intervened to “stop humanitarian disaster… [and it was] the very essence of [U.S.] leadership” in post-Cold War era.17 But what is more important is the international community, the West, the U.S. and Canada intervening for purely humanitarian motives, which speaks to this new era. Even the former Yugoslavia and Bosnia, in contrast to the Cold War, were on the strategic margins, at least for North America. However, many observers raised the memory of July 1914 as a rationale for intervention, the fear that the ethnic violence would spread north and east and spark similar conflicts in Eastern Europe, and many reasonably noted the threat of waves of Yugoslavian refugees fleeing into the European Union, with major domestic implications for all the 14. Andrew Moravcsik, "Striking a New Transatlantic Bargain", 75. 15. Luca Ratti, “NATO’s Developing Role in the Mediterranean and Greater Middle East: Out of Area But Not Out of Business”, 7. 16. J. Shea, “A NATO for the 21 ST Century Toward a New Strategic Concept”, 53. 17. J. L. Hirsch, R. B. Oakley and C. A. Crocker, Somalia and Operation Restore Hope: Reflections on peacemaking and peacekeeping, viii.

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European states.18 But, even for the Europeans, and certainly for Canada and the United States, the unfolding humanitarian disaster in Bosnia meant that none could stand idly by and watch Bosnia burn. Edward Luttwak’s argument at the time to give war a chance may have made political strategic sense, but the costs of doing so were simply too high.19 In many ways, the fundamental principles of Western liberal democracy, universal human rights, and a new world order relative to R2P founded on these principles were at stake.

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Even in the case of Iraq from 2003 onward, one should not ignore a humanitarian impulse. Certainly, American political and strategic interests were at stake. However, relative to the strategic importance of Iraq as a bulwark against the threat posed by Iran, the U.S. could have lived with a revitalized Hussein regime in which the oil would flow uninterrupted to the West, aided and abetted by Western investment into Iraqi oil production and a re-armed Iraq serving as a strategic asset against Iran. In effect, United States strategic and political interests would appear to dictate an entirely alternative course than undertaken in 2003. The United States legal case was premised on a contested interpretation of UN resolutions and the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) December 2002 report regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. These motives proved fallacious when no such weapons were found, but Iraqi scientific expertise from its past weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs uncovered by the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM)20 after the Gulf War had not disappeared, and the possibility of a revitalized Hussein regime reconstituting its programs could not be ignored, especially in response to recent concerns about the Iranian nuclear program. Can this be considered a humanitarian issue? In the purest sense of the concept, this is problematic. But, a humanitarian element cannot be entirely ignored when contemplating the implications of many nuclear armed states in the region. Beyond the formal WMD rationale for the military overthrow of the Hussein regime, too many observers forget other elements at play, such as the corrupt oil-for-food program and Iraqi manipulation of the program in order to undermine the future viability of sanctions.21 Indeed, all indicators suggested that international solidarity was on the verge of collapse. The high economic and humanitarian costs to the United States and the United Kingdom of maintaining the “no-fly” zone over Iraq to protect civilians opposed to the regime, especially for the Kurds in the north, with the rest of the world standing idly by cannot but be seen in humanitarian terms. With sanctions likely to collapse, and with them a decision to end the “no-fly” zone, followed by a reconstitution of Iraqi military and security forces, one could easily envision a humanitarian disaster similar to that being witnessed today in Syria. The failure in many ways was in 1991 when the world stood by as the regime slaughtered its own citizens that had risen in rebellion. But that was at the beginning of this new era when Cold War mentalities still reigned. Since then, new thinking has driven Western military intervention. Indeed, the United States could have readily withdrawn from both Iraq and

18. M.E. Brown, Causes and Implications of Ethnic Conflict, 92. 19. E.N. Luttawak, “Give War A Chance”. 20. CRS Report for Congress. Received through the CRS Web, Order Code RL31671, Iraq: U.N. Inspections for Weapons of Mass Destruction, Updated October 7, 2003 Sharon A. Squassoni, Specialist in National Defense Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Trade Division. 21. N. Birdsall and A. Subramanian, “Saving Iraq from its Oil”, 88.


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

An Analysis of Past Military Interventions and Humanitarianism In the aftermath of the Cold War, nine significant Western military interventions occurred: the First Gulf war (1991), Somalia (1992–1993), Haiti (1994), Kosovo (1999), Afghanistan (2001), Macedonia (2001), Iraq (2003), Libya (2011) and Mali (2013). However, cynics suggest that the humanitarian impulse is simply part of a revived Western imperialism trying to shape the world in the West’s or America’s image, and destroying indigenous cultures in its wake.22 In effect, it is a strategic interest. But perhaps it is best for the citizens of these countries that have experienced intervention to answer these claims and contemplate what their future would have been if the West had not intervened, and to ask the citizens of those countries where the West has failed to intervene. Of course, the past 20 years of Western military intervention is not an unblemished success story, but failures and errors too often dominate assessments, instead of recognizing the transformative nature of this era of intervention. A historical pattern of military interventions is elaborated below to map the last 20 years of interventions in terms of attaining their objectives.23 Figure 1: An analysis of intervention in the last 20 years 24

Twenty Years of Western Military Intervention: An Emerging Trend for International Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding

Afghanistan once its regime-change missions were accomplished, which would have been the response of narrow self-interest in many ways. Of course, strategic interests cannot be ignored in the case of Iraq. But Afghanistan is a different story since the resurgence of the Taliban. What strategic interests does the future of Afghanistan hold for the West, especially given the internal situation and culture of that society? Instead, a sense of responsibility exists, driven by Western humanitarian values legitimizing the continued Western investment.

22. M. Ortega, “Military Intervention and the European Union”, 41. 23. M. Ortega, “Military Intervention and the European Union”, 5-6.

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Historical examples suggest that interventions purely with military means are not exceptions, but what is compelling in the last 20 years of intervention is an overwhelming humanitarian motive. This is where these interventions qualitatively differ. Consider the interventions in Haiti, Somalia, and Afghanistan, for instance, and the sheer number of Western nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) undertaking nationbuilding. Military end states are easier to quantify than nationbuilding. Nationbuilding is a painstaking task that necessitates a stable security condition, even though a military presence tends to delegitimize intervention and also sour the relationship between intervener and host nation. Thereby, the success and failure of interventions depend upon how clearly the “coalition of the willing” view the end state of intervention in strategic terms, because “no one starts a war—or rather, no one in his senses ought to do so—without first being clear in his mind what he intends to achieve by that war and how he intends to conduct it”.25 Selectivity and biases are the most puzzling parts of intervention. Why Bosnia, but not Rwanda? Why Libya, but not Syria? However, being selective is not in itself an argument against intervention, otherwise no one would act. Nonetheless, recognizing that Western intervention is inherently linked to U.S. military capabilities, even in the case of Libya, the question is really about U.S. selectivity. The reality of limited resources and the difficult need to make choices relative to the reality of international politics cannot be ignored; Russia’s and China’s veto in the UN Security Council regarding the military intervention in Syria is a good example. These choices require careful consideration of the balance between national, moral, and ethical responsibilities of decision-makers and their international responsibilities. The important point for this unique era is the significant presence and relevance of these international responsibilities that are dependent on the rational choices of interveners. However, using game theory, the selective bias of intervention by major powers can be understood in a scenario where Power 1 (nation willing to intervene) and Power 2 (nation opposing intervention) are poised to intervene militarily: “when issues [conflict situation] are divisive, Power 2 is more likely to counter intervene. If Power 2 will counter an intervention by Power 1 but will not intervene unilaterally, then Power 1 will often prefer to not intervene. Thus, when major powers have deterrent capabilities, they reduce the likelihood of unilateral intervention”.26 Despite overwhelming instances of human casualties in Syria, the West’s decision for non-intervention is a gross anomaly. However, this can be understood if the combined effects of four factors are taken into account: (i) Russia and China’s (two permanent members of UN Security Council) determined stance on non-intervention in Syria; (ii) a fear of the shift in regional balance of power in the Middle East; (iii) the growing unpopularity of sending armed forces abroad in most of the Western nations; and (iv) the ruling regime’s current military capability.27 R2P and the Canadian Perspective on Military Intervention The belief that human beings matter more than sovereignty became a central idea across the international political horizon of the 1990s, though it was later overshadowed by the Global 24. 25. 26. 27.

Modified from M. Ortega, “Military Intervention and the European Union”, 5-6. C. Clausewitz, “On War”, 577. S. E. Gent, “Strange Bedfellows”, 1093. Caitlin A. Buckley, “Learning from Libya”.


War on Terrorism.28 While “normatively based challenges to the sovereign rights of states are hardly new in international history”,29 effective intervention by the UN Security Council, notwithstanding Korea (1950), was not possible throughout the Cold War era. Between 1945 and the Seven Day Arab-Israeli War (1967), no resolution was passed on humanitarian grounds and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was not mentioned until 1978. As observed by van Baarda (1994), in the 1970s and 1980s, “the Security Council gave humanitarian aspects of armed conflict limited priority . . . but the early nineteen-nineties can be seen as a watershed”30 moment when, between 1990–1994, twice as many resolutions than in the 1980s were passed. Since then, in light of Chapter Seven, the UN Security Council’s broader approach to humanitarian crises as threats to international peace and security widened and took centre stage in intervention.31 The International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS), outlined the R2P doctrine in December 2001 (Centre 2001), which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2005 and later unanimously reaffirmed by the Security Council in 2006 (Resolution 1674).32 There was intense debate surrounding the proposal to intervene in state sovereignty as enshrined in the UN Charter (Article 51), but, as ICISS co-chairs Gareth Evans and Mohamed Sahnoun reminded all, “it is only a matter of time before reports emerge again from somewhere of massacres, mass starvation, rape, and ethnic cleansing”.33 Military interventions into complex humanitarian emergencies are full of challenges for the state system, “but when another military intervention for human protection purposes is required, the R2P provides an essential Framework”.34 This was the case in Libyan intervention in 2011 under the UN Resolution 1973.35 The ICISS identified two reasons for undertaking intervention in a sovereign state: “large-scale loss of life and ethnic cleansing, underway or anticipated”.36 Humanitarian intervention should also be subject to four conditions: right intention, last resort, proportional means, and reasonable prospects of success as identified and decided by the UN Security Council.37 The report’s opening sentences captures the overall theme: State sovereignty implies responsibility, and the primary responsibility for the protection of its people lies with the state itself. Where a population is suffering serious harm, as a result of internal war, insurgency, repression or state failure, and the state

28. 29. 30. 31. 32.

33. 34. 35.

36. 37.

T. G. Weiss, “The Sunset of Humanitarian Intervention”. S. N. Macfarlane, Intervention in Contemporary World Politics, 79. T. A. Van Baarda, “ The Involvement of the Security Council”, 140. T. G. Weiss, “R2P after 9/11 and the World Summit." Wisconsin International Law Journal 24 (2006): 741. On a failed Canadian attempt to secure a technical General Assembly resolution on R2P in 2002, see Maria Banda, “The Responsibility to Protect: Moving the Agenda Forward,” paper prepared for the UN Association of Canada, March 2007, p. 10; World Federalist Movement, “Civil Society Meeting on the Responsibility to Protect,” final report, Geneva, 28 March 2003, p. 9. See also UN General Assembly, “2005 Summit Outcome,” A/60/L.1, 20 Sept. 2005, paras 138–9. On the impact of the war in Iraq, see Gareth Evans, “When Is It Right to Fight?’ Survival 46: 3, 2004, pp. 59–82. ICISS, “International Commission on Intervention”, 100. T. G. Weiss and K. M. Campbell, “Military Humanitarianism”, 137. “The Security Council, Recalling its resolution 1970 (2011) of 26 February 2011, Deploring the failure of the Libyan authorities to comply with resolution 1970 (2011)…” http://www.guardian.co.uk/ world/2011/mar/17/un-security-council-resolution [Accessed 12 December 2012]. N. Kikoler, “Responsibility to Protect”, 6. T. G. Weiss, “The Sunset of Humanitarian Intervention”.

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in question is unwilling or unable to halt or avert it, the principle of non-intervention yields to the international responsibility to protect (ICISS International Development Research Centre xi). The report outlined the concept of sovereignty but insisted that it also encompassed a state’s responsibility to protect populations within its borders. The World Federalist Movement’s Institute for Global Policy reported in their summary about an “Expanded View of Sovereignty as Responsibility” that the new approach to the concept of sovereignty signifies “the legal identity of a state in international law” (para 2.7.) The report further argues that in international relations, “sovereign states are regarded as equal, regardless of comparative size or wealth” (ibid). Thus, “a condition of any one state’s sovereignty is a corresponding obligation to respect every other state’s sovereignty” (para. 2.8), which is the norm of nonintervention as codified in the UN Charter. “Generally, however, the authority of a state is not regarded as absolute” (para 2.7). Although the sovereignty is regulated by a state’s own constitutional power sharing arrangements, it is expected that states should assume certain obligations as members of the international community. In doing so, there is a necessary recharacterization “from sovereignty as control to sovereignty as responsibility in both internal functions and external duties” (para 2.14.). It is further stated in the same document that “the debate about intervention for human protection purposes should focus not on the right to intervene but on the responsibility to protect” (para 2.29). In terms of actors and stakeholders in intervention, “the responsibility to protect implies an evaluation of the issues from the point of view of those seeking or needing support, rather than those who may be considering intervention” (para 2.29) and “state sovereignty implies responsibility, and the primary responsibility for the protection of people lies with the state itself ” (xi). These are the cornerstones of R2P, and sometimes selectivity in intervention can be explained through these principles. However, R2P does not prescribe regime change. In light of R2P, Canadian involvement in intervention occurred in Libya with other coalition members of NATO authorized by the UN resolution of 1973. In explicit terms, the intervention was not aimed at regime change but to protect civilians from harm, as stated in the UN mandates and interpreted in the Rules of Engagement (ROE) of the coalition forces (UN Security Council). Nevertheless, any external interventions create an enabling environment whereby the ruling regime eventually collapses. Military Intervention and Peacebuilding: A Synergistic Approach The current era has also witnessed the complicated interaction of military intervention forces with government development agencies and non-governmental actors in insecure environments. In the neat step-wise process of the past, the military engaged to generate a level of security, and then was followed by specialists in development and reconstruction (i.e. local and international NGOs). In contrast to the step-wise process, in the past 20 years, the separation of between military actors conducting security and stabilization operations and civilian-led NGOs pursuing development and rehabilitation goals has been significantly transformed and has evolved into a simultaneous, integrated process, today known in Canada as the “whole of government approach (framework)”.38 This conviction further 38.

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F. K Abiew, "NGO-military Relations in Peace Operations.". For details of the framework see http:// www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/ppg-cpr/frame-cadre-eng.aspx [Accessed 17 November 2013] and for the details of the approach taken in Afghanistan see http://www.afghanistan.gc.ca/canada-afghanistan/index.aspx? lang=eng [Accessed 20 August 2012].


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Military intervention over the past two decades has been much more than just the traditional use of force. Armed forces have changed in response to these new environments and demands, which is perhaps best epitomized by the concepts of the strategic corporal and Three Block War, where decisions at a tactical level affect strategic matters in military intervention.40 Military forces now heavily rely on the people on the ground, thereby developing a synergistic operating system not only necessary to conduct purely military operations but also in carrying out peacebuilding projects within a broader nation-building framework. In this context, Canada’s Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START) composed of military and civilian officials, is a unique approach that enhances the federal government’s capacity to provide three core supports after intervention. These supports are: “policy leadership on fragile states, operational agility (it facilitates coordinated responses to crises, natural disasters, deploys Canadian experts when and where required, and provides support for international partners working in these contexts) and effective programming (it delivers timely and effective programs in support of conflict prevention and peacebuilding, peacekeeping and peace operations, including security system reform)”.41 Consequently, when one speaks of operational choices in terms of military commitments in this new era, one is speaking about much more than choices between armies, navies, and air forces. During the last decade of the 20th century, in his 1992 and 1995 editions of An Agenda for Peace, the then-UN Secretary General Boutros-Ghali proposed the concept of “peacebuilding.” He underlined this concept as an extension of existing peacekeeping operations, which include “action[s] to identify and support structures which will tend to strengthen and solidify peace in order to avoid a relapse into conflict”.42 Although a clear definition of the term is yet to be agreed upon, peacebuilding relies on creating infrastructures and enabling conditions so that sustainable or lasting peace prevails in countries once ravaged by armed conflict.43 Peacebuilding includes, but is not limited to, creative intervention methods undertaken in concert with various actors so that causes of overt violence are significantly reduced.44 Moreover, the sources responsible for structural conflict and causing “social injustice” need to be taken care of in order to build structures for sustainable peace.45 In addition, the pertinent concept of “integrated peacebuilding” has been used in this paper “which is defined as a set of processes and tools used by civil society 39. E. W. Anderson, “Disaster Management and the Military”. 40. C. C. Krulak, The Strategic Corporal. 41. “Stabilization and Reconstruction”, for source see http://www.international.gc.ca/START-GTSR/ index.aspx?view=d [Accessed 25 August 2012]. 42. B. Boutros-Ghali, “A Supplement to An Agenda for Peace”, 822. 43. Charles-Phillipe David, “Does Peacebuilding Build Peace?” 25. 44. Sean Byrne et al., "Economic Assistance, Development and Peacebuilding”. 45. Johan Galtung, “Violence, Peace and Peace Research”, 171

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substantiates the pre-eminent notion of intervention for humanitarian purposes. There have been numerous practical and ideological problems surrounding military and civil relationships that have evolved over the past 20 years, which also speaks to the uniqueness of this era. Moreover, as a function of military capabilities and the lack of such capacity in other national sectors, the military has taken the lead in responding to humanitarian crises as a result of natural disasters.39 In both these senses, Western militaries have undertaken major roles, which hitherto were on the margins of their self-image as a combat force.

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and governmental actors to transform the relationships, culture, and institutions of society to prevent, end and transform conflicts”.46 Kofi Annan, the successor of Boutros-Ghali as UN Secretary General, expanded upon the concept of peacebuilding, calling it a dynamic process that aims at building social-economic structures in post-conflict societies through various activities. This provides an important platform for growth, thus reducing the risk of a relapse into violence and facilitating “reconciliation, reconstruction and recovery”.47 Annan also emphasizes the need for “laying a solid foundation” during the peacebuilding process so that a post-peace accord society becomes resilient enough to resolve critical issues like “reintegrating ex-combatants and others into productive society; and mobilizing the domestic and international resources for reconstruction and economic recovery”.48 In post-conflict societies, reconstruction, integration of former combatants, and economic recovery are essential elements of peacebuilding. Nevertheless, peacebuilding activities can only be implemented if the postintervened society does not relapse into violence. The United Nations’ high-level panel on threats, challenges, and change mentioned that “development and security are inextricably linked” (UN, 2004, viii). In light of this, I argue that international community justifies military interventions to counter security threats notwithstanding the fact that lack of socio-economic development in many countries are in fact prime reasons to cause insecurity. That is why a long-term peacebuilding strategy must be embedded within a grand strategy of military intervention right from the beginning. As all interventions ultimately face local resistances, only a meticulously planned peacebuilding strategy and its timely delivery can offset such resistance. Consequently, local actors and locally grounded NGOs should be incorporated within the peacebuilding scheme right from the moment when the security situation has been stabilized, and they must be allowed to take the lead in conducting and implementing peacebuilding projects. Consequently, interveners should understand that Western-style liberal democracy cannot be “copied and pasted” in many of the intervened countries, as necessary institutions conducive to democracy are simply absent in those countries. It takes time to inject the ethos of democracy, equality, and justice in many of those nations where non-democratic regimes have governed for generations. However, by adopting a proper mechanism, sincere stakeholders need to be identified and nurtured so that they can take over the helm of political power where, ultimately, democracy and rule of law can thrive. As peacebuilding suggests long-term commitments by various donors and development partners, transition from various phases of intervention (i.e., military-led operations to civilian-led peacebuilding) should also be coordinated as the momentum of peacebuilding gathers pace. Gone are the days of intervening military forces counting on a “winning hearts and minds” strategy for success. It is time to undertake holistic, collaborative partnerships through peacebuilding to make interventions successful and their results sustainable. I argue in this paper that interveners should undertake three specific peacebuilding initiatives in intervention: trust building, relationship building, and institution building. These specific 46. Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacebuilding, 8. 47. Kofi Anan, The Causes of Conflict, 29. 48. Ibid, 31.

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Trust building must spearhead the whole peacebuilding process. Initially, it might appear that the only parties available to join trust building activities are the forces opposing the ruling regime, but the radius of trust building should be expanded by taking other stakeholders on board as the intervention progresses. In military interventions, the main focus is always kept on the ruling regime’s military capability/forces; this is the center of gravity for the planning and ultimate execution of intervention.50 In the past, interveners have often made the mistake of co-opting opposition due to haste and lack of proper intelligence assessment of the situation. However, careful planning must proceed so that possible stakeholders are identified in the theatre of intervention at an early stage and a communication channel is established. These stakeholders (i.e., local opposition political leaders, local civil society members, journalists, or persons in exile) need also to be consulted to plan and earmark specific trust building projects. Nevertheless, too many stakeholders with diverse agenda might complicate the trust building process, but their contribution to a list of trust building projects cannot be underestimated. For example, in the beginning of Libyan campaign, an extraordinary approach of trust building was undertaken by interveners as reflected in the following paragraph: NATO began its quest for approval from the Arab League to enforce a no-fly zone… Britain and France were pursuing a UN resolution to permit enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya… The African Union (AU) had communicated a “deep concern” about the violence in Libya… [and] on March 12, the Arab League and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) requested the UNSC to impose a no-fly zone over Libya.51 In addition, the “coalition of the willing” and the UN also lent their support to the Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) as the legitimate representatives of Libyan people, thereby recognizing them as the key stakeholder in the process (UN 2013). However, once the military intervention progressed in Libya, trust building suffered as a regime change became evident and collateral damage mounted. Through the NTC, a sense of international and domestic legitimacy was established that paid dividend throughout the Libyan campaign. However, besides establishing the “no-fly zone,” the rebels were also supplied with arms to fight Gaddafi regime, which eliminated the requirement of putting Western boots on the ground. Arming rebels/opposition comes with a caveat: it has resulted into long-term instability in the post-intervention Libyan security situation. Nevertheless, often the regime’s opposition party will demand weapons, and interveners must carefully weigh the options of doing so because, once armed, these groups cannot be controlled, even after the formal intervention is over. 49. Evaluation Report 1/2004: “Towards a Strategic Framework for Peacebuilding: Getting Their Act Together Overview report of the Joint Utstein Study of Peacebuilding”. For source see: www.regjeringen.no [accessed on 17 November 2013]. 50. Caitlin A. Buckley, “Learning from Libya”. 51. Caitlin A. Buckley, “Learning from Libya”, 85.

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peacebuilding initiatives can eventually “establish the socio-economic foundations of longterm peace; establish political framework for long-term peace; and can generate reconciliation, a healing of the wounds of war and justice”. 49 These might seem to be abstract concepts, but earmarking and implementing specific projects can really operationalize them.

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In the Afghanistan campaign, trust building initially seemed to be a daunting task due to the existence of numerous stakeholders coming from multiple ethnic backgrounds. However, identifying key stakeholders through traditional Afghan Loya Jirga proved to be important and successful.52 In sum, the onus of trust building lies with the interveners and, depending on the situation on the ground, a proper strategy should be in place from the beginning. Interveners must be careful in their words and deeds so that trust building is not hampered. The biggest drawback in the Afghanistan campaign can be linked to the ever-widening gap between the words and deeds of the interveners when it comes to the use of drones, which killed a disproportionately large number of civilians in this intervention: In the past few years, drone attacks and night raids have become staples of the effort to combat al-Qaeda and the Taliban…its use of these questionable tactics does as much to lose the battle for hearts and minds in the Muslim world as the more offensive tactics of pitched battles and indiscriminate application of force”.53 Relationship building is the next important aspect within the peacebuilding framework in intervention, and will only happen when trust building has brought all the stakeholders together. To this effect, short- and long-term projects that contribute to relationship building need to be identified and planned. For instance, cultural awareness plays a vital role in relationship building. Being culturally aware and understanding the nuances of the people for whom the intervention was made, pays dividends in relationship building in two distinct ways: (i) it establishes respect between and among the parties and (ii) it delegitimizes the claims of those forces opposing intervention and diminishes their propaganda. In the Libyan campaign, the supreme command made elaborate efforts to respect cultural issues and used ultimate caution not to bomb any mosques and avoid bombing during the month of Ramadan. Cultural advisers were embedded within the planning headquarters to advise on issues related to religious sensitivities.54 In contrast, we notice a very different scenario in the Afghanistan campaign when on numerous occasions (Holy Quran burning, inhuman treatment of prisoners of war, urinating on dead Taliban, etc.) cultural awareness within the intervening forces was visibly absent.55 Even recently, when the news broke out about the U.S. initiative to negotiate with the Taliban in Qatar, the Karzai government publicly criticized the initiative and indicated that it would seriously hurt trust building.56 Moreover, the coalition in Afghanistan war relied on an initial strategy that identified “some of the practices of the coalition forces, such as their early reliance on casualty-heavy air strikes and brutish warlords, [which] created legitimate grievances among the population”.57 All of these factors play a role in relationship building and interveners need to be careful about a myriad of factors contributing to trust building.

52. Government of Canada, History of Canada’s Engagement in Afghanistan, Available at: http:// www.afghanistan.gc.ca/canada-afghanistan/progress-progres/timeline-chrono.aspx?lang=eng [Accessed on 13 July 2013]. 53. Adam Cohen, “The Dual Failure of Night Raids and Drones”, Page no.? For source see http://fpif.org/ the_dual_failure_of_night_raids_and_drones/ [Accessed on 13 July 2013]. 54. Briefing by NATO force commander, General Bouchard, University of Manitoba, September 2012. 55. ISAF, ISAF Denounces Deplorable Act, http://www.isaf.nato.int/article/isaf-releases/isaf-denouncesdeplorable-act-portrayed-in-video.html [Accessed on 7 August 2013]. 56. Matt Smith, “ISAF Chief: Karzai Claim”,http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/11/world/asia/afghanistankarzai-comments [Accessed on 23 July 2013]. 57. David M. Rodriquez, “Leaving Afghanistan to the Afghans”, 47.


Institution (re)building can be seen as the single most important task for the interveners in order to bring sustainability in the post-intervention period. Here, I refer to three types of institutions that are vital to ensure sustainability: institutions related to law enforcement and security, civil society, and the economy. As a matter of fact, interveners should keep in mind that, prior to intervention, these institutions were already in place, but due to conflict or past practices, they were either destroyed or corrupted. In the planning phase of intervention, civilian experts need to understand what remains of these institutions and then build shortand long-term plans to rebuild them. Given that interveners have a relatively short life span, certain key measures must be installed in these institutions so that when the interveners depart these institutions can continue functioning. In the Libyan case, law enforcement and building of a unified security force could not be undertaken because of the nature of intervention (i.e., no boots on the ground). As a result, we still see a power struggle among various rebel groups, including the brazen attack in the U.S. embassy in Ben Gazi that killed the U.S. envoy in Libya.58 Central to the current Libyan problem is the unresolved issue of oil revenue share, which is compounded by number of tribal groups vying for local control of power as explained below: A multitude of local militias fought during the war as independent units. Now the most powerful, from Misrata, Zawiya, and Zintan, have in effect become statelets. They refuse to relinquish their arms or obey the government and engage in regular skirmishes. The TNC, unelected, provisional, institutionally hollow, is powerless to demobilize these armed bands and to meld them into a national military, which exists in form but has little substance given the militias’ firepower.59 In contrast to Libya, interveners invested quite extensively in Afghanistan to build the Afghan National Army (ANA) and “the coalition strategy has been a success, and it continues to create the conditions for expanded Afghan control over security… the goal is for Afghan forces to assume lead responsibility for security by the end of 2014,” (Rodriguez 2011, 48).60 Afghanistan’s economy is also gaining ground, as noted by the Heritage Foundation: “the Afghan economy has recorded strong but very volatile growth, driven by agriculture, construction, and services (with 5.7% GDP growth)”.61 Nevertheless, what is missing in both of these interventions is the failure of the interveners to figure out a process to reinstall a civil society that had been disfigured by the autocracy. Given the legacy of absence of any sort of civil society in these nations, it was important to at least initiate a process through which a strong civil society could emerge. Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT): Can it Be a Future Model for Civil-Military Cooperation in Intervention?

58. “Libya Attack Brings Challenges for U.S.”, The New York Times, for details see http:// www.nytimes.com/2012/09/13/world/middleeast/us-envoy-to-libya-is-reported-killed.html? pagewanted=all&_r=0 [accessed 11 August 2013] 59. Rajan Menon, “Libya: What the Intervention has Wrought”. 60. David M. Rodriquez, “Leaving Afghanistan to the Afghans”, 48”. 61. Heritage Foundation, Index of Economic Growth, http://www.heritage.org/index/country/ afghanistan# [Accessed on 7 August 2013].

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In the last 20 years of military interventions, we notice military forces continuously remain engaged in “humanitarian relief, assistance, and small scale development”.62 The U.S. military primarily conceived its civil-military model of peacebuilding as a “reconstruction team.” Later, they also developed the concept of Human Terrain Teams (HTT),63 which was first tested in the Iraq intervention (25 PRTs). Later, the U.S. military, in conjunction with other military forces, also implemented 25 PRTs in Afghanistan as “part of a larger set of responses to postconflict challenges. PRTs are part of an evolutionary process of civil-military relations and interagency cooperation” (Abbaszadeh et al.).64 The Center for Army Lessons Learned, 2007 mentions “the PRT is designed to help improve stability by building up the capacity of the host nation to govern; enhance economic viability; and deliver essential public services, such as security, law and order, justice, health care and education”.65 Consequently, the U.S. military further issued a new Stability Field Operations Directive in 2008, which highlighted “the essence of full spectrum operations: Army forces combine offensive, defensive, and stability or civil support operations simultaneously as part of an interdependent joint force to seize, retain, and exploit the initiative, accepting prudent risk to create opportunities to achieve decisive results.”66 Initiated by the U.S. Army and supported by other coalition members, these PRTs were tasked to take over peacebuilding works under a joint civilmilitary authority.67 This is a tangible shift in recasting the civil-military relationship within a broader peacebuilding framework. Currently, the military is the lead agency in planning and conducting PRT activities within the overall “light footprint” concept mentioned in the Petersberg Agreement.68 These PRTs were launched once initial military operations were over and in addition to Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).69 However, PRTs were decentralized and various coalition members organized their own PRTs based on funds available and objectives within either the ISAF or OEF mandates.70 This made the PRTs truly international, as they implemented various peacebuilding projects in conjunction with military operations: “the establishment of PRTs has set a new precedent for the intermingling of military objectives with humanitarian aid. From a humanitarian point of view, PRTs are hybrid structures which have contributed to the blurring if not altogether erasing the distinction between humanitarian aid and military objectives”.71 In addition, a United States Institute of Peace (USIP) report highlights the composition and purpose of these PRTs: “the U.S. model featured a complement of seventynine American military and three civilian government representatives. The U.S. PRTs stressed governance, force protection, and quick impact development projects to win hearts and minds”.72

62. Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacebuilding, 43. 63. Mission statement of Human Terrain System “The Human Terrain System develops, trains, and integrates a social science based research and analysis capability to support operationally relevant decision-making, to develop a knowledge base, and to enable sociocultural understanding across the operational environment.” http://humanterrainsystem.army.mil/ [Accessed 11 August 2013]. 64. “Provincial Reconstruction Teams: Lessons and Recommendations”, 4. 65. Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacebuilding, 43. 66. US Army Stability Operations, FM 3-07, October 2008, Headquarters Department of the Army, page 2 -1. 67. Gerard McHugh and Lola Gostelow, Provincial Reconstruction Teams, 1. 68. Peter Runge, The Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Afghanistan, 10. 69. Ibid, 10. 70. Ibid, 45. Julia Hett, “Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Afghanistan”, 4. 71. Peter Runge, The Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Afghanistan, 18. 72. U.S.I.P., The US Experience with Provincial Reconstruction Teams, 1.


However, the PRT approach has drawn criticisms. Experts have critiqued the PRT model on two grounds “[one] resolution of command and control issues and ‘culture clash’ between civilians and military, and among civilian interagency partners; [two] increased planning to integrate civil-military and interagency members”.73 The phenomenon of a “culture clash” between the military and civilian agencies is understandable, but expertise from various civilian agencies can be integrated within the intervention strategy provided there is necessary awareness and willingness prevailing. The point is to allow civilian experts in the development and peacebuilding sectors to take part in the military-led decision-making process for intervention so that both of them are aware of their commonalities and differences. It was observed that the PRTs “were originally designed in Afghanistan to deal with the ‘spoiler problem’ by co-opting and reconciling local power brokers, and that other missions such as counterinsurgency and post-conflict reconstruction were added on later. Thus, the basic understanding of what a PRT should be trying to achieve and what it realistically can achieve has been in flux”.74 This pitfall can only be avoided if the PRTs are planned right from the beginning within the broader peacebuilding framework to achieve long-term results. The current PRT model also drew criticism with regard to coordination of peacebuilding activity. Further, in one of their reports, the USIP also mentioned an absence of “an agreed concept of operations and an effective central coordinating authority. The U.S. PRTs would profit from interagency delimitation of civilian and military roles and improved civilian agency staffing, funding and administrative support”.75 The same report mentioned that “PRTs are primarily military organizations; thus, better suited for performing security-related tasks. PRTs should concentrate on supporting Afghan security sector reform and providing a security presence in contested areas”;76 however, this was not the case in peacebuilding activities undertaken by various non-U.S. PRTs. For example, the Canadian Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team (KPRT) focused on “six priorities (four of them focused on Kandahar)” 77 in Afghanistan and undertook “three signature projects (Dahla dam and irrigation project, education [50 schools] and polio eradication)”78, all of which were primarily peacebuilding projects aimed at “foster [ing] long-term, sustainable benefits to the Afghan people”.79 Canadian approach of using such PRT models is also based upon “an integrated ‘3D’ approach, combining diplomacy, defence and development, is the best strategy for supporting states that suffer from a broad range of interconnected problems”.80 In sum, PRTs have proved to be useful models of potential civil-military cooperation, provided these are conceived and integrated in the overall design of the intervention and taking in to account of the lessons learnt. 73. 74. 75. 76. 77.

Christoff Luehers, “Provincial Reconstruction Teams”, 95. Oskar Eronen cited in Christoff Luehers, “Provincial Reconstruction Teams”, 96. U.S.I.P. The US Experience with Provincial Reconstruction Teams, 2. Ibid, 1. The four priorities in KPRT in Afghanistan by Canadian government are: •to maintain a more secure environment and establish law and order by building the capacity of the Afghan National Army and Police, and support complementary efforts in the areas of justice and corrections. •provide jobs, education, and essential services, like water. •provide humanitarian assistance to people in need, including refugees. •enhance the management and security of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team (KPRT), Canadian engagement in Afghanistan. http:// www.afghanistan.gc.ca/canada-afghanistan/kandahar/kprt-eprk.aspx [Accessed 22 July 2013]. 78. “Development Projects”, for source see http://www.afghanistan.gc.ca/canada-afghanistan/projectsprojets/index.aspx [Accessed 18 November 2013] 79. Ibid. 80. Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT), A Role of Pride and Influence, 20.

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In the following model, I build upon the concept of current PRTs as experienced in the Iraq and Afghanistan interventions. I use the term “peacebuilding teams” (PTs) to provide a generic term for this concept and also to emancipate the term “provincial”. The composition of PTs can vary depending on the phases of intervention (for example, until the stabilization of security situation is achieved, these can be military-heavy); however, PTs should be conceived during the planning phase of intervention. PT objectives should be synchronized with military objectives, as the implementation of peacebuilding projects is dependent on a stable security situation. In Figure 2, I elaborated the components of military end states/ objectives and peacebuilding objectives so that we are clear about the complementarities of the two different approaches in the planning phase of intervention. While the military has their end states to be achieved, these end states should be in line with peacebuilding objectives since “military or security objectives have been increasingly justified by development approaches that seek to integrate humanitarian action and poverty reduction with effort stop violent conflict and political instability: combining activities ranging from counter-insurgency to conflict resolution, military training to community development and food aid to reconstructing agricultural markets”.81 Peacebuilding objectives can be achieved by initially preparing PTs to plan and undertake specific peacebuilding projects within a secured environment facilitated by the military forces. In this regard, PTs should not forget that the participation of the stakeholders and accountability of the host country is crucial, since “people in recipient societies want more ownership and to play a more active role in their own development, saying that they want to discuss together, decide together and work together”.82 However, military end states and peacebuilding objectives should be finalized

Figure 2: Military and peacebuilding objectives in the planning phase of intervention 81. Oxfam cited in Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacbuilding, 7. 82. Collaborative Learning Project cited in Craig Zelizer, Integrated Peacebuilding, 48.

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In Figure 3, I have highlighted how the progress of military operation and peacebuilding should take place depending on a pre-determined timeline. Consistent with the concept of the U.S. Army’s Full Spectrum Operations, “no single element is more important than another is; simultaneous combinations of the elements, constantly adapted to the dynamic conditions of the operational environment�.83 Figure 3 stipulates that both civil and military components must act in synergy based on a timeline. Although the security situation sometimes impedes a timely transition, focus must not be lost to maintain the tempo of work on the three key peacebuilding elements (i.e. trust building, relationship building, and institution building). The pace of peacebuilding might be adjusted depending on the security situation on the ground, but it must continue and spearhead the overall mission once the security situation is stabilized. As the intervention progresses, military operations should draw down gradually and peacebuilding activities by PTs should take over.

Figure 3: The progression and timeline of military operations and peacebuilding Conclusion Western military interventions over the last 20 years indicate an emerging international norm that is composed simultaneously of humanitarian impulses and geopolitical aspirations. 83. US Army Stability Operations, FM 3-07, October 2008, Headquarters Department of the Army, page 21

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and agreed upon by both the civilian and military component leaders in the planning phase of the intervention, meaning that peacebuilding objectives should be pre-designated but flexible enough to remain consistent with the evolving politico-military situation on the ground. Due emphasis must also be given to these peacebuilding objectives as these have long-term effects on the society and people for whom the intervention has been made.

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Relevant features of these interventions include ideological norms, coalition building for intervention based on classical realism, and civil military cooperation during and postintervention. These are encapsulated in the doctrine of R2P, which enables justification of intervention. In this paper I argued that in order to make intervention successful and its end result sustainable a carefully planned peacebuilding strategy must be present during all the phases of military intervention. Such a strategy would help build resilience so that the country where intervention occurred cannot relapse into a disorderly condition that necessitated intervention in the first place. In this regard, I elaborated upon the existing PRT model and suggested a PT model that can be used as a platform for future civil-military cooperation in intervention. We face the question of whether this era is coming to an end, as Krauthammer predicted in 1991.84 To the extent that this unique era of Western intervention has been a product of the unipolar moment, if the current debate on the decline of the U.S. and rise of new great powers—usually focused on China—is correct, then it will lead to the return of Great Power rivalries which will create great dangers for intervention. The internationalist, humanitarian principles unique to the age will not disappear, as they reflect core Western values. Rather, the costs and dangers of intervention relative to Cold War fears of escalation will significantly alter Western calculations. This does not mean that intervention will disappear. Rather it may well take the form of the past Cold War era. For some, like Africa, it may mean more intervention in the competition for strategic resources relative to current Chinese penetration. The recent creation of the U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) is indicative of this moment.85 However, such interventions will potentially be of a different nature than the last two decades, and it is not simply the return of Great Power politics to centre stage that may bring the era to an end. Economic pressures on all the Western states are likely to limit resources available for intervention. The economic costs may simply be too high for the West to entertain intervention in conflicts clearly outside of core political-strategic interests.86 Politically, the West will likely continue to support humanitarian intervention under R2P considerations, but carrying out the intervention may be left to others. Acknowledgement: I would like to thank Professor. Dr. James Fergusson Ph.D., Professor of Politics Studies and Director of Center for Defence and Security Studies (CDSS), University of Manitoba, Canada for his constructive review and contribution in this article.

84. C. Krauthammer, “The Unipolar Moment”. 85. “About the Command”, for source see http://www.africom.mil/about-the-command [Accessed on 25 August 2012]. 86. “A Century of US Military Interventions”, for source see http://www.bearcanada.com/fae/usa/ usmilinterventions.html [accessed 28 August 2012].


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Abbaszadeh, Nima, Mark Crow, Marianne El-Khoury, Jonathan Gandomi, David Kuwayama, Christopher MacPherson, Meghan Nutting, Nealin Parker, and Taya Weiss. Provincial Reconstruction Teams: Lessons and Recommendations. Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs, Princeton University, January 2008. Web. 7 August 2013 http://wws.princeton.edu/news-and-events/news/item/prts-iraq-and-afghanistan-best -practices-and-lesson-learned-0 Centre, International Commission on Intervention State Sovereignty International Development Research. 2001. "International Commission on Intervention and State Soveignty." In, ed Gareth Evans and Mohamed Sahnoun. Canada: IDRC. Fixdal, M., and D. Smith. 1998. "Humanitarian Intervention and Just War." Mershon International Studies Review no. 42 (2):283-312. Gent, S.E. 2007. "Strange Bedfellows: The Strategic Dynamics of Major Power Military Interventions." Journal of Politics no. 69 (4):1089-1102. Hehir, J.B. 1998. Military Intervention and National Sovereignty: Recasting the Relationship. Edited by Jonathan Moore, Hard Choices, Moral Dilemmas in Humanitarian Intervention. UK: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc. Ikenberry, G.J. 2002. "America's Imperial Ambition." Foreign Affairs no. 81 (5):44. Levite, A., B.W. Jentleson, and L. Berman. 1992. Foreign Military Intervention: The Dynamics of Protracted Conflict. USA: Columbia University Press. Rodriguez, David M. 2011. "Leaving Afghanistan to the Afghans: A Commander's Take on Security." Foreign Affairs no. 45. Stedman, S.J. 1992. "The New Interventionists." Foreign Affairs no. 72 (4). van Baarda, T.A., "The Involvement of the Security Council in Maintaining International Law", Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights 12,1, 1994. Clausewitz, C., On War. Ed. and Trans. by Michael Howard and Peter Paret. USA: Princeton University Press, 1976. Cohen, Adam, "The Dual Failure of Night Raids and Drones: The military thinks it has a winning combination, but night raids and drones are actually helping to lose the war in Afghanistan", Foreign Policy in Focus http://fpif.org/ the_dual_failure_of_night_raids_and_drones/ [Accessed 23 July 2013]. David, Charles-Philippe, "Does Peacebuilding Build Peace?", Security Dialogue 30,1, 25. 1999. Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. A Role of Pride and Influence in the World. Ottawa: Government of Canada, 2005. Drezner, D.W., "The New World Order." Foreign Affiars. 86, 34, 2007 Evans, G., and M. Sahnoun, "The Responsibility to Protect." Foreign affairs 81,6, 99-110, 2002. Fixdal, M., and D. Smith, "Humanitarian Intervention and Just War", Mershon International Studies Review 42,2, 283-312, 1998. Galtung, Johan, "Violence, Peace, and Peace Research." Journal of Peace Research 6,3, 167191, 1969 Gent, S.E., "Strange Bedfellows: The Strategic Dynamics of Major Power Military Interventions." Journal of Politics 69,4, 1089-1102, 2007. Government of Canada, History of Canada’s Engagement in Afghanistan 2001–2012, http:// www.afghanistan.gc.ca/canada-afghanistan/progress-progres/timeline-chrono.aspx? lang=eng [Accessed on 13 July 2013].

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[Accessed on 7 August 2013]. Moravcsik, Andrew., "Striking a NewTransatlantic Bargain" , Foreign Affairs 82,4, 74-89, 2003. Ninkovich, F.A., The Wilsonian Century: US Foreign Policy Since 1900, USA: University of Chicago Press, 2001. Ortega, M., Military Intervention and the European Union, Paris: Institute for Security Studies, Western European Union, 2001. Pearson, F.S., and R.A. Baumann, International Military Intervention, 1946-1988, Michigan: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research, 1993. Ratti, Luca., " NATO’s Developing Role in the Mediterranean and Greater Middle East: Out of Area But Not Out of Business", Journal of Middle Eastern Geopolitics,2,3, 5-16 Roberts, A., "A New Age in International Relations?" International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 1944-) 67,3, 509-525, 1991. Rodriguez, David M., "Leaving Afghanistan to the Afghans: A Commander's Take on Security", Foreign Affairs 45, 1-7, 2011. Runge, Peter, The Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Afghanistan: Role model for civilmilitary relations? Germany: Bonn International Centre for Conversion GMBH, 2009. Shea, J.A., "A NATO for the 20th Century: Toward a New Strategic Concept", World Affairs 31,2, 43-55, 2007. Smith, Matt, "ISAF chief: Karzai claim of U.S., Taliban collusion is 'categorically false'" CNN 11 March 2013,. http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/11/world/asia/afghanistan-karzaicomments [Accessed on 23 July 2013]. Stedman, S.J, "The New Interventionists." Foreign Affairs 72,4, 1992. Talentino, A.K., Military Intervention After the Cold War: The Evolution of Theory and Practice, Ohio: Ohio University Center for International Studies, 2005. UN., “After Much Wrangling, General Assembly Seats National Transitional Council of Libya as Country’s Representative for Sixty-Sixth Session” 16 September 2011, Sixty-sixth General Assembly Plenary 2nd Meeting. http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2011/ ga11137.doc.htm [Accessed on 11 July 2013]. UN., A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility. Report of the Secretary-General's High -level Panel on Threats, Challenges, and Change, United Nations, 2004. UN Security Council, “Security Council Approves ‘No-Fly Zone’ over Libya, Authorizing ‘All Necessary Measures’ to Protect Civilians, by Vote of 10 in Favour with 5 Abstentions” 17 March 2011. http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2011/sc10200.doc.htm [Accessed on 12 July 2013]. United Stated Institute of Peace, The U.S. Experience with Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Afghanistan Lessons Identified. Special Report 152. Washington, D.C.: USIP, October 2005 van Baarda, T.A., "The Involvement of the Security Council in Maintaining International Law", Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights 12,1, 1994. Weiss, T.G., "The Sunset of Humanitarian Intervention? The Responsibility to Protect in a Unipolar Era", Security Dialogue no. 35,2, 135-153, 2004. Weiss, T. G. "R2P After 9/11 and The World Summit." Wisconsin Internatiounal Law Journal 24 (2006): 741. Weiss, T.G., and K.M. Campbell, "Military Humanitarianism", Survival 33,5, 451-465, 1991. Zelizer, Craig, ed. Integrated Peacebuilding: Innovative Approaches to Transforming Conflict. Westview Press, 2013.

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www.cesran.org


October 2013

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions By Dr Marwan Darweish*

Abstract: Since its establishment as a state in 1948 Israel has based its relations with Arab countries and the Palestinians on the principles of denial of Palestinian national rights, the threat of military force and collaboration with corrupt, undemocratic Arab regimes. The Arab revolutions sweeping the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are having an impact on the relationships between Israel and the Palestinians on one hand and Israel and neighbouring Arab countries on the other. The social and political changes that these revolutions have provoked have questioned Israel’s military doctrine. The have also inspired Palestinians and Israelis to take nonviolent action in their pursuit of peace and justice. Key words: Nonviolence, Arab Spring/Revolutions, Palestinian Authority, Conflict, Palestinian Israeli Conflict. Centre for Peace and Reconciliation Studies (CPRS) Coventry University Jaguar Building, Room: JAG10 Lower Gosford Street Coventry, CV1 5ED, UK Contact: +44 (0) 24 7765 9067 www.cesran.org * Dr. Marwan Darweish is a Principle Lecturer at the Centre for Peace and Reconciliation Studies (CPRS) at Coventry University. Dr Darweish has research interest in peace processes, conflict transformation and nonviolence and has extensive experience across the Middle East region and a special interest in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. He has considerable experience in leading training courses in conflict transformation and peacebuilding, and in undertaking consultancies in strategy development to intervene and transform conflict.

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol. 3| No. 2 October 2013


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Introduction

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

This paper analyses the impact of the “Arab Spring” on the Palestinian Israeli conflict and how it has changed the relationship between Israel and the Palestinian authority. The terms Arab "Revolutions" (Thawra in Arabic), “Awakening” (Nahda) or Intifada (Uprising) are the terms mostly used by Arab sources, with the “Arab Spring” mainly used in the West.1 For this paper I use the term Arab Revolutions. Rabab El-Mahdi, in “Orientalizing the Egyptian Uprising”, criticises the way the Egyptian revolution has been depicted in the local and international media as if it is alien to the Arab culture.2 This paper will highlight the different perceptions of the Arab revolutions amongst Palestinians and Israelis and will explore the influence it had on their own societies and political leadership. It will also reflect on the changes and reorientation of political powers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) as a whole. The outbreak of the Arab revolutions that swept the MENA countries from December 2010 came as a surprise to many observers, including media reporters and researchers. It caught political leaders, diplomats and foreign relations experts on Middle East affairs unaware, and unprepared for the scale and widespread nature of the nonviolent mass demonstrations.3 The international news media presented the death of the young Tunisian vegetable vendor Mohammed Bo Azizi as the spark that triggered the Arab revolutions. He set himself on fire on 17 December 2010 in protest against the confiscation of his goods and his humiliation. According to this argument, the case of Bo Azizi indicates that the root causes of the Arab revolutions are social, political and economic inequality and oppression. In Egypt the number of people living on less than two dollars a day grew from 39 percent to percent of the population during the last decade of Mubarak regime.4 By contrast, civil society organisations and opposition groups in Tunisia, Yemen and Egypt have argued that the process of the Arab revolutions started a few years ago and was the culmination of long and hard work by civil society organisations, trade unions, professional bodies and political groups in promoting advocacy and raising awareness. Protesters 1. 2.

3. 4.

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For discussion on this issue see Rami Khouri, Drop the Orientalist term “Arab Spring” http:// english.alarabiya.net/views/2011/08/19/162970.htmlfor Accessed 3 September 2012. See also Rabab El-Mahdi., Orientalizing the Egyptian Uprising, Jadalyiyya, April 2011. http:// www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/1214/orientalising-the-egyptian-uprising. (Accessed 13 January 2013) Jeremy Salt, Containing the “Arab Spring”, Journal for and about Social Change movements, volume 4, (1): 54-66, May 2012. Rashid, Khalidi, Preliminary Historical Observations on the Revolutions of 2011, , in Eds, Bassam Haddad, Rosie Bsheer and Ziad Abu Rish, The Dawn of the Arab Uprising, End of an Old Order, Pluto Press, London, 2012.


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overcame their fear and the tyranny of the regime to hold mass demonstrations in Tunisia in December 2010 and Egypt in January 2011, calling for the removal of Presidents Bin Ali and Mubarak and demanding political and social freedom. The slogan in Arabic “"Al-Shaa’b Yored Isqat al-Nizam", meaning the "the people demand the fall of the regime", or “Irhal” (Go, Leave) united protesters across the MENA region and became an iconic feature of the Arab revolutions.5

In both Egypt and Tunisia national armies were reluctant to use force to maintain presidential power. This prevented escalation of violence against demonstrators, although in Egypt there were some violent clashes with the army, which caused the death of many civilians.8 However both were in contrast to the situations in Syria, Libya, Yemen and Bahrain, where the military played a significant role in the repression of the opposition to the regime. The police, army and other special security forces in these countries conducted a violent attack against civilians, which caused hundreds of injuries and deaths. However, whilst the army in Egypt and Tunisia have retained the trust of the people, the police and special security forces are in a different position. Much of the public’s anger in the post-revolution period has been directed against them and the institutions they represent, not least because they deployed violence and control tactics aimed at preventing the spread of the demonstrations and containing the revolution.9 The Arab revolution in Egypt and Tunisia had two phases. The first phase united all political, social and religious forces under one slogan “down with the regime" and "leave, we don’t want you". Secular forces, religious groups, trade unions, the working and middle classes, the young and old, men and women took to the streets in cities and villages to call for the downfall of the regime and for political freedom. Khouri described it as “the birth of the Arab 5. 6.

7. 8. 9.

Marc Lynch, “The Big Think Behind the Arab Spring: Do the Middle East’s Revolutions Have a Uniting Ideology” Foreign Policy, December 2011. Michael Theodoulu, The National newspaper, 27July 2011, and Amro Ali, “Brothers in the Hood: Egypt’s Soft Powers and the Arab World. http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/8899/brothers-inthe-hood_egypt’s-soft-powers-and-the-a (Accessed 14 January 2013) Marwan Bishara, A Rude Arab Awakening, Al-Jazeera, 1 August 2011. http://www.aljazeera.com/ indepth/opinion/2011/08/201181131751785145.html (Accessed 13 January 2013) See Jeremy Salt Ibid http://www.amnesty.org/en/news/qa-state-human-rights-middle-east-and-north-africa-2012-01-10 (Accessed 15 January 2012).

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

In the last few decades, Arab leaders in the MENA countries have faced several attempted coups from within the military establishment or by radical Islamist groups to overthrow them by force. All of these attempts were suppressed and resulted in heavy restrictions on political freedoms and long term imprisonment for those involved. The Arab revolutions however were characterised by mass protest for civil and political rights, a contradiction of the top down approach that promotes change through violent means and with limited involvement of citizens. One argument is that the active nonviolent civil approach adopted by the revolution is the polar opposite to a military coup and as such has served to undermine the use of violence as a strategy for change.6 Bishara warns against the threat of violence and notes that “The challenge for the Arabs is to define their conflict through peaceful protest, and not be dragged into bloody conflicts that tend to change people for worse… [change must be] ...defined by the dream of a peaceful and prosperous future”.7

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citizen” and “true Arab sovereignty”.10 Dabashi argued that the Arab revolutions will define a new era in the Middle East and mark the end of Postcolonialism.11 The second phase focused on the demands to transfer power from military rule to civil elected government. The challenge facing the revolutions was to transform the structures and the institutions that maintained regimes in power, and to seek the establishment of transparent and accountable political and judicial structures that would allow citizens to participate in the decision making and shaping of their society. Both countries held parliamentary elections in 2011/12. In Egypt the Muslim Brotherhood, under the name of the Freedom and Justice Party, and the Salafist Party (Al-Aslah) won a majority of the votes for the parliament. Similarly in Tunisia Al-Nahada (Muslim Brothers) also won a majority. During this period of transition it will be critical to establish the foundation for free political participation and freedom of organisation, respect of human and civil rights and means to address the social and economic root causes of deprivation and marginalisation that impact on the majority in society. This is a daunting project facing the new elected governments, which must seek social and political reform and economic growth across the board, and to make provision for equal opportunities in work and education for many marginalised citizens.

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Features of the Arab Israeli Conflict

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Since its foundation, the Zionist movement has perceived the Arab indigenous population of Palestine as aliens and primitive people, proposing that Jews from Europe would modernise the country and "turn the desert to bloom". By dint of their number, the Palestinian population were (and are) perceived as a threat to the integrity of Israel as a Jewish state – unique in the world. Ben Gurion, leader of the Zionist Movement and the first Prime Minister of Israel, declared as early as 1920 that the ”Arabs of Palestine did not constitute a separate national entity but were part of the Arab nation”12, arguing that ideally it would be better to have Palestine empty of its Arab Palestinian inhabitants to establish the Jewish homeland. Later Golda Meir, Israeli Prime Minister from 1969-74, took the position of publicly denying the existence of the Palestinian people.13 There has long been a clash between the fulfilment of the Jewish aspiration for a homeland in Palestine and the rights of the Palestinians over their land and sovereignty. Over time more than one million Palestinians have become refugees in neighbouring Arab countries and in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Many of these either fled or were displaced from lands in Israel during the 1948 and 1967 wars.14 The use of military force by Israel towards Arab countries and Palestine is one of the main features of their fractious relationship(s). Israel has military superiority in the MENA region and ranks within the top ten countries in the world for its military capability. It has had 10. Washington Report on the Middle East Affairs, Connecting the Arab Spring to Palestine, December 2011, Vol, 30, issue 9,pp 63-63. 11. Hamid, Dabashi, The Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism, Zed books, London2012. 12. Avi Shlaim, The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World, London, Penguin Books, 2000, p17. 13. Ibid 14. For further discussion about the perception of the Zionist Movement of the Palestinians see Edward Said, The Question of Palestine, Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1980. Mossad, J “The postcolonial” colony: time space and bodies in Palestine/Israel” in Fawzia Afzal-Khan and Kalpana Seshadri-Crooks, eds. The Preoccupation of Post colonial Studies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.


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nuclear capacity since the late 1960s and remains the only nuclear armed country in the Middle East. It is not a signatory to the nuclear proliferation treaty and does not openly declare the extent of its nuclear capability. This is in contrast to neighbouring Arab countries, many of whom have been ranked much below Israel in terms of military capability. The asymmetry of power between the parties has enabled the Israelis to maintain a controlling and dominant position in its relationships with Arab neighbours.15

By examining the history and trajectory of the Israeli Arab conflict since 1948 we can see the success of this policy and the impact that Israel’s military supremacy has had on conflict dynamics. Israel first signed the Camp David peace agreement with President Sadat of Egypt in 1979. It also signed the Oslo agreement with the PLO in 1993, and immediately afterwards signed a peace agreement with Jordan. In all of these, Israel was the powerful party. The military imbalance of power in favour of Israel has been translated to political coercion in the form of imposing political conditions for "peace agreement". Meanwhile Israel has imposed military rule on the Palestinians who remained within the borders of the newly created state of Israel in 1948. It has imposed complex dual legal systems and policies in the West Bank and Gaza Strip since 1967, with one system for the Jewish settlers and another for the Palestinians. The settlers enjoy civil and political rights as the state’s Jewish citizens, while the Palestinians have been denied their civil and human rights. Israel has total military control over the Palestinian territories, including entry and exit, and has imposed a movement restriction on the Palestinians within the territories through checkpoints and travel restrictions. Israel also has control over resources such as water, land, planning and building permissions. “A prolonged system and structure of discrimination has led to severe economic deprivation, exhaustion, despair and denial of the national rights of the Palestinians”.17 The overall control of Israel on the life of the Palestinians reflects the imbalance of power between the parties and has become a defining feature of the Arab Israeli conflict.

15. Avi Shlim, The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World, Penguin books, 2000 16. Avi Shlaim, Israel and Palestine: Reappraisals, Revisions, Reflections. Verso, 2009, part 1. See also Ibid, pp11-22. 17. Marwan Darweish, "Human Rights and the Imbalance of Power: The Palestinian-Israeli Conflict", Veronique Dudouet and B. Schmelzle (eds) Human Rights and Conflict Transformation: The Challenge for Just Peace, Germany: Berghof Handbook Dialogue Serious 9, 2010, p88.

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

Jabotinsky, founder of Revisionist Zionism and father of the Israeli right, argued that it is only through the establishment of military force impervious to Arab pressure that the Jewish homeland can be secured. Ben Gurion voiced the same conclusion after the outbreak of the Arab Revolt in 1936, advocating for a gradualist strategy combined with the use of military power in order to force Arab neighbours and Palestinians to acquiesce to the establishment of Jewish state in the “Land of Israel”. To implement such a strategy Israel has had to base its approach on the use of force, in the knowledge that Palestinians would not give up their national rights through free choice. Only through suppression could Israel impose its own will and agenda on the Palestinians and Arabs, compelling them to negotiate from a weak position.16

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The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

While Israel is often perceived in terms which recognise its uniquely Jewish character and military supremacy, Arab countries in the MENA region also have their own defining features. They have long been characterised by the prolonged and intense control that Western colonial powers have exerted over the region. This extended from Morocco to Egypt and the Arab peninsula and through Iraq, Jordan, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon in the north. In the post-colonial period many Arab leaders stayed in power for decades after the struggle for national liberation in the 1940s and 50s. Anderson argues that is a situation unique to the region, stating that “The collective longevity of the rulers had no parallel anywhere else in the world: Gaddafi in power for 41 years, Assad father and son 40, Saleh 32, Mubarak 29, Ben Ali 23”.18 Both Mubarak and Saleh were preparing the ground for their sons to take power, had they been able to appoint a successor. Dynastic rule has been common, spanning the Saudi Royal family and other Sheiks and Sultans in the Gulf States, the Hashemite Royal family in Jordan and the Alaouite monarchy in Morocco. These families passed power down through generations of royal autocratic rule, typically with very little respect for human or political rights. They have also been considered vital allies of the US and Europe.19

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Most of Israel’s and the USA’s long-term allies in the Middle East have been corrupt and undemocratic regimes, including those in Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia. The people of these Arab countries have experienced political and economic corruption, grinding poverty and frequent violations of their human rights. Although MENA countries have about two thirds of the world’s known reserves of oil and natural gas, this wealth has not translated into fulfilling the political and economic aspirations of the region’s people.20 The standard of living is still poor and most of the wealth of these countries is in the hands of a small exceptionally rich minority drawn from the political group in power. This failure to provide benefits to the wider population has caused political tension, frustration and alienation from the political leadership and state. It has encouraged corruption and nepotism and created cynicism amongst the ordinary people.21 This economic impoverishment of the majority of the population has been exploited by radical secular and Islamic groups in the region, as they provide fertile ground for recruitment to political and military opposition aimed at the overthrow of the regimes.22 While these features in the Israeli Arab conflict are longstanding and likely to endure, they are also subject to changing political winds. This is particularly the case in the current period of political flux following the Arab revolutions, which are without precedent in the region. Traditionally the USA, Israel and Egypt have maintained a strategic military and political alliance since the signing of the Camp David agreement. By entering into the agreement Egypt secured its place as an ally of the USA and leader of the “moderate Arab camp”. It was 18. Perry Anderson, “On the concatenation in the Arab world” New Left Review, no. 68, March-April 2011, p8. 19. Crisis Group International, The Shiite Question in Saudi Arabia, Middle East Report N°45 – 19 September 2005. Also see http://www.crisisgroup.org/~/media/Files/Middle%20East%20North%20Africa/ Iran%20Gulf/Saudi%20Arabia/The%20Shiite%20Question%20in%20Saudi%20Arabia.pdf. Accessed 25 September 20111. Accessed 2 May 2012. 20. Heather Deegan, Third Worlds: The Politics of the middle East and Africa, Routledge, 1996, pp154-56 21. See the World Bank Gross National Income Per Capita for 2010. http://siteresources.worldbank.org/ DATASTATISTICS/Resources/GNIPC.pdf 22. Heather Deegan, Third Worlds: The Politics of the Middle East and Africa, Routledge, London, 1996, pp154-156. For more details see the web site and reports of Transparency International.


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considered an important force in endorsing American foreign policy in the MENA region. Egypt also exercised leverage on the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) not to abandon the negotiations with Israel despite the continuation of Israeli occupation and failure of the Oslo peace process. Syria, by contrast, has led the radical and anti-American camp, an ally of Iran and Hezbollah and a base for Hamas and other Palestinian political groups opposed to the peace agreement with Israel.23 Reflections on the impact of the Arab revolution on Palestinians

These areas of change and opportunity have opened up against a backdrop of deepening political divisions within the Palestinian political leadership and growing impoverishment throughout the territories. Since the Hamas victory in the 2006 election, tensions with rival party Fatah have escalated, and with Hamas’ military takeover of the Gaza Strip in 2007 the conflict between the two parties intensified further still. In reality the Palestinians have two authorities, one in the West Bank led by Fatah and the other in Gaza Strip led by Hamas. Hamas controls the Gaza Strip and Fatah the West Bank, with the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) centre of power in Ramallah. This political division within the Palestinian political leadership has coincided with a deepening of Palestinian impoverishment in the occupied territories, with Hamas facing international boycott and the PNA facing increased pressure from donors to introduce neo-liberal economic reforms and good governance.24 The Arab revolutions provided motivation and justification for Palestinian youth in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to take to the street to demand an end to the split between Hamas and Fatah and call for the formation of a new unity government. The 15 March Youth Movement and the West Bank Popular Committees have all called for dialogue and unity between the opposing parties. Both parties have been criticised for representing their own parochial interests rather than the popular aspirations of the Palestinians. A survey conducted by the Arab World Centre for Research and Development (AWRAD) amongst Palestinian youth indicates that 58 percent of young people hold Hamas and Fatah equally to blame for the division in Palestinian society.25 The youth adapted the slogans of the Arab revolutions; keeping the rhythm "Alshab Yored isqat al-Nizam” in English "the people demand the fall of the regime” to "Alshab Yored inhaa al inqisam" in English "the people demand an end to the split". The Palestinian pubic is aware that to face Israel they have to unite and implement a clear strategy and vision to end the

23. Noam Chomsky, Hopes and Prospects, London, Penguin Books, 2010. For more details see chapter ten, pp251-258. 24. Mandy Turner, ‘The Power of “Shock and Awe”: The Palestinian Authority and the Road to Reform’, international Peacekeeping, Vol.16, no.4 25. For more details see http://www.awrad.org/etemplate.php?id=275&x=4. See also the survey November 2011 amongst 1200 adult Palestinians in the occupied territories

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

The Arab revolutions have enabled ordinary citizens in the Middle East to break the barrier of fear in opposing undemocratic regimes and in calling for collective dignity and political and social change. Palestinians have not been immune to this wind of change, which provides opportunities and possible new directions for the Palestinian independence struggle.

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occupation and establish a sovereign Palestinian state. The leadership of Hamas and Fatah have become more sensitive to public opinion and pressure for unity, yet demonstrators still face harassment and violence by the Palestinian security forces in both the West Bank and Gaza. On 16 March 2011, the day after a major demonstration from whence the 15 March Youth Movement claims its name, President Abbas announced his willingness to travel to Gaza to meet Hamas leaders to start reconciliation talks and the formation of a unity government.26

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

In seeking to end the split between Fatah and Hamas and reconcile the Palestinian political leadership, President Abbas is in effect responding to popular opinion in Palestine. This is confirmed by a survey conducted by AWRAD in February 2012. Amongst 1200 youth in the West Bank and Gaza strip who were interviewed about their attitudes to the Arab Awakening, 43 per cent agreed that the events in other Arab countries are positively affecting the Palestinian situation. Another survey conducted by the same institution found that 50 per cent of the respondents agreed that the Egyptian revolution has had an impact on the Palestinian situation politically, and will ease living conditions.27

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The changes in Egypt have had a particularly profound effect in Palestine, not least because of the significant role that Egypt plays in Palestine’s internal politics and external affairs. Since 2007 Egypt has played a leading role in mediating between Hamas and Fatah, though all the attempts have failed. This is partly because any agreement between Hamas and Fatah has been dependent on Israeli government and US approval, and both countries have pressured Egypt not to support an agreement that might strengthen Hamas and increase the influence of its allies.28 Egypt under Mubarak was a central pillar for both Israel and the USA to maintain the status quo in the Middle East. Under Mubarak, Egypt also aided Israel to reinforce a tight economic and diplomatic siege on the Hamas administration in the Gaza Strip and to hermetically seal off the Rafah crossing. By contrast Al Arabi, the first Egyptian Foreign Minister to be appointed after the revolution, explained his intentions to strengthen relations with the Palestinians and invest in efforts to reconcile Hamas and Fatah.29 There have been improvements in the relationship between Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, evidenced by the visit of the Egyptian prime minister to Gaza and communications with Hamas during the war in Gaza in November 2012. New arrangements to partially open the Rafah crossing at the Egyptian border have been made, breaking the international blockade. However, security cooperation between Israel and Cairo remains strong. In particular, the joint effort to “clean-up” the Sinai and expunge militants is at one of highest levels for years.30 The Mubarak regime supported Fatah in its power struggle with Hamas, both because of the historical roots that Hamas shared with the (then outlawed) Muslim Brotherhood and 26. Personal interview conducted by the author with Civil Society activist, 17 July 2012, Gaza Strip. 27. See www.awrad.org. 28. Patrick Seale, If Assad Falls, We Will See All the Region’s Alliances Unravel, The Guardian. 12 April, p28. 29. Doaa El-Bey, “New Face New Ideas”, Al-Ahram Weekly, 23-29 June 2011, p.1. 30. Amos Harel, Israel Egypt Security Cooperation at one of Highest Level since Peace Deal, Say Officials on both Sides. Haaretz 9 August 2012. http://www.haaretz.com/blogs/east-side-story/israel-egyptsecurity-cooperation-at-one-of-highest-levels-since-peace-deal-say-officials-on-both-sides-1.457085 (Accessed 23 January 2013).


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because of the position that Hamas occupied as a hostile opponent to Israel and the USA at national and regional level. Erakat argues that “The fortitude of the Mubarak-Abbas alliance is also the result of profound and vested investment in maintaining US hegemony in the Middle East. The ouster of Mubarak would tip this balance and have broad ramifications”.31 The political changes that have resulted from the Arab revolutions have indeed had broad ramifications, not least by presenting new opportunities to reopen dialogue between Palestinian’s conflicting parties. The removal of Mubarak, an ally of Fatah, and an acknowledged disenchantment of Fatah with the US have contributed to a reorientation of perspectives amongst the factions.

The geographical proximity and the historical ties with Egypt further motivated Hamas to sign the Cairo agreement with Fatah on 4 May 2011. According to the agreement, a unity government would be formed mostly from technocrats and independent personalities in preparation for an election within a year. This would contest the Presidency, the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC, Palestinian Parliament), and the Palestinian National Council (PNC), a body that represents all the Palestinian political groupings. The control of the security forces was to be delayed until after the election, however new mechanisms were put in place to initiate reconciliation at grassroots level. The implementation of the agreement has stalled, initially because of Abbas’s insistence on retaining Salam Fayyad as Prime Minister, whom Hamas regards as too subservient to Israel and the West.33 Hamas has argued that Fayyad is hostile to their party and is responsible for the arrest of thousands of their supporters, with the encouragement of Tel Aviv. However given resignation of Fayyad from his post in 2013 and the appointment of a new Prime Minister, it can now be argued that better conditions for reconciliation might emerge and drive this process forward. Abbas has faced immense pressure from Israel and the USA to suspend talks with Hamas and to postpone efforts towards reconciliation. Israel threatened that it would withdraw facilities from the PNA leadership and withhold taxes collected by Israel on behalf of the Palestinians. This source of revenue is critical for the functioning of the PNA. The Obama administration has also exerted direct pressure on Abbas to keep Fayyad as Prime Minister or otherwise face political and financial sanctions. In his speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee,

31. Noura Erakat and Sherene Seiklay, Thahrir’s Other Sky, in Eds, Bassam Haddad, Rosie Bsheer and Ziad Abu Rish, The Dawn of the Arab Uprising, End of an Old Order, Pluto Press, London, 2012. 32. Crisis Group International, Palestinian Reconciliation: Plus Ca Change, Middle East Report no.10, July 2011, p1. 33. Joel Beinin. “The Israeli Palestinian Conflict and the Arab Awakening”, Middle East Research and Information Project, www.merip.org/mero/mero080111 Accessed 19 September 2011.

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

The fall of Mubarak regime, the instability in Syria and the election of Morsi as President of Egypt, had created a new coalition between the Muslim Brothers in Gaza Strip and Egypt. The support to Hamas reached its highest level in November 2012, when a number of international and Arab leaders, including the Egyptian prime minister, visited Gaza. This change gave new legitimacy to Hamas in the Gaza Strip and elsewhere in the Middle East, which was short-lived after the President was deposed by the military in July 2013. Despite the new political reality it remains a challenge for the world to find a way to deal with political Islam empowered by political process.32

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a powerful Israeli lobby group, President Obama made clear that “the recent agreement between Fatah and Hamas poses an enormous obstacle to peace”.34

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

As well as increasing the public and political pressures on both sides of the debate on the rift between Hamas and Fatah, the Arab revolutions have highlighted the significance of nonviolent strategies in the struggle against Israeli oppression. Palestinians have a long tradition of using nonviolent action as a political strategy and means of resistance, being amongst the first to launch an organised popular uprising in 1936 to end British colonialism and in calling for an end to Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip during the first Intifada in 1987. The success of nonviolent popular resistance as a means for change in the wider Middle Eastern context has encouraged debate amongst the Palestinian leadership and public about its effectiveness as a strategy to achieve national and civil rights. Member of the PLC have commented that “We believe that nonviolent resistance is more participatory, it works locally and internationally. It broadens participation – armed struggle depends on small secret groups. Israeli power is more limited facing this kind of resistance; they cannot use their full power and justify its violence and force. Also what happened in Arab countries encouraged this approach. Pursuing this model will be more acceptable to the internationals and undermine Israeli propaganda about Palestinians as terrorists wanting to kill all Israelis.”35

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In 1948 thousands of Palestinians (700,000 according to the UN) were forced out of their homes to become refugees in the neighbouring Arab countries and the West Bank and Gaza Strip.36 The recent nonviolent action may have provided fresh hope that their demands for participation in the Palestinian debate and the right to return could ultimately be successful. A group of Palestinians created a Facebook page in March 2011 calling for peaceful nonviolent protest in Arab countries and internationally against the occupation and demanding the right of return for Palestinian refugees in accordance with UN resolutions. In a few weeks hundreds of thousands of people were organised through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.37 On 15 May 2011 thousands of Palestinian refugees from Syria and Lebanon crossed the heavily protected border with Israel in the occupied Golan Heights. This was to commemorate Nakba day (Catastrophe day), the day on which thousands of Palestinians were forced to leave their homes in 1948 and become refugees in the West Bank, Gaza and the neighbouring Arab countries. This mass nonviolent action by Palestinians refuges demanding the right of return to their homeland can be seen as a key event in Israel's Palestinian Arab Spring.38 Their actions were designed to highlight the plight of the refugees and expose the lack of legitimacy and authority of Arab regimes to decide their fate. This nonviolent protest, inspired by the Arab revolutions elsewhere, was enacted simultaneously in the West Bank, and on the borders of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Gaza with Israel.

34. 35. 36. 37.

Khaled Amayreh, “Hamas-Fatah Discord on Fayyad persists”, Al-Ahram 23-29 June 2011, p2. Personal interview with PLC member Bassam Salhi, 7 June, 2012, Ramallah. Ibid Shlaim, 2009 www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2011/05/israel_and_palestine_0 (Accessed August 2011) 38. Ibid

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Jordanian and Egyptian security forces prevented protesters from reaching the border with Israel. Israel responded violently against the protesters and it was reported that more than twenty demonstrators were killed in different locations. Some argue that Assad exploited the Nakba Day to divert criticism and “manufacture” clashes on the border with Israel to deflect external attention on to Israel.39 Regardless of this, the failure of Israel’s use of military force to suppress nonviolent civil resistance demonstrates that even with sophisticated aircraft and missiles it is difficult to prevent or respond to such actions. Ehud Barak, Israel’s Defence Minister, warned that “We are just at the start of this matter and it could be that we’ll face far more complex challenges”.40

The Arab revolutions highlighted the demands of millions of people in the Arab world for freedom and democracy, participation, social justice and an end to corruption and dictatorships. These calls may have given the Palestinian leadership cause for concern, given that the PNA has been frequently accused of the violation of human rights, mismanagement and corruption. There have been no election for the Palestinian Legislative Council in the occupied territories since 2006 and no election for the President. Historically the PNA in the West Bank and the Hamas administration in Gaza Strip have behaved much like other authoritarian regimes in Arab countries. Perhaps in recognition of the growing reluctance across the Middle East to countenance authoritarian and unaccountable styles of leadership, the Fatah Executive Committee recently took the unusual step of expelling one member on corruption charges. He now faces prosecution. During interview, an (anonymous) member of a Palestinian NGO explained to the author that “The PNA feels the heat of the events in the Arab countries and the calls to punish those accused of corruption”.43 This pressure on the Palestinian leadership has also accelerated the call to replace the PLO old guard and give the younger generation a chance to play a role in shaping the future of the Palestinian society and polity. For some years a younger generation, who were born and have lived under Israeli occupation since 1967, have been demanding a greater role in political 39. http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/6082/roundtable-on-palestinian-diaspora-and-representat. Round Table: Palestinian Diaspora and Representation. (Accessed 13 January 2013) 40. Jonathan Cook, On an old anniversary, a new sense that change is possible, the National, 17 May 2011. 41. Joel Beinin, The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Arab Awakening, Middle East Research and Information Project, August 1, 20011. www.merip.org/mero/mero080111.(Accessed 1 September 2011) 42. Rashid Khalidi, "The Uncertain Arab Autumn", New Statement, 19 September 2011, p. 46. 43. Personal interview conducted by the author, 12 March 2012, Jenin.

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

Other examples of nonviolent direct action were organised by different civil society organisations. Local popular resistance groups protested against the construction of the Separation Wall and confiscation of Palestinian land. There was activism in the neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem against the confiscation of Palestinian homes. The Israeli organisation ‘Solidarity’ and Palestinian popular local committees in Jerusalem organised a march on 15 July 2011 to support the campaign for Palestinian UN membership.41 Meanwhile the local and international movement for boycott, divestment in and sanctions against Israeli and settlement goods has continued to grow.42

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participation. This call took another step with the campaign to mobilise and organise the Palestinian Shatat (Diaspora) to have representative bodies and mechanism for Palestinians and civic registration for direct election to the Palestinian National Council.44 The campaign demanding political change gathered speed during protests organised in the West Bank and Gaza demanding political reforms, new elections and reconciliation. These calls for reforms came from young independent people who reject the methods and politics of both Hamas and Fatah. Khouri noted that “The success of the uprisings in other Arab countries will only fuel the burgeoning Palestinian desire for freedom and justice.45 The Palestinian Israeli conflict is widely seen as at the core of the conflict between Israel and the Arab countries. Palestinian resistance has long been a source of pride and admiration for neighbouring Arab people, who over the years they have made a great show of their support for their fellow Arabs in Palestine. Yet today it is the Palestinian people who look to revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen as a source of inspiration and a model for progressive change. Perceptions of Arab citizens have changed in Palestine, across the Arab region and worldwide. As former Palestinian negotiator Hanan Ashrawi states, “There is a new energy, a new dynamic”.46 The protests have unified the Arab public in their demands for "Alshab Yored isqat al-Nizam" meaning the "The people demand the fall of the regime" and inspired the revival of pan-Arab feelings.

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The Arab revolutions and Israel

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Israel is proud of its claim to be the sole democracy in the Middle East with a multi-party system, sharing the same values of liberal democracies in the West. The corruption and lack of democracy that has too often characterised Arab regimes in the Middle East has suited Israel’s interests and image, strengthening its claim to uniqueness in the region as a fullyfunctioning liberal democracy surrounded by Arab dictatorships. By contrast to Israel, Arab leaders have been perceived as lacking in credibility and the support of their people. The moral legitimacy of Arab dictators to criticise Israel about its violation of human rights in the Palestinian occupied territories, or to make a credible demand for statehood for the Palestinians, has remained questionable for as long as they themselves were the main cause of political and social injustice in their own countries. Yet whilst Israel presented itself as above the autocratic fray, it also benefited from the ‘strong leadership’ that Arab regimes were able to provide. Klein has argued that “Israel has traditionally preferred to maintain close relations with non-democratic monarchs, rather than communicating with the people. Israel’s security, according to this view, is assured first by its own force, and second by strong Arab leaders who agree to cooperate secretly or openly with Israel.”47 It is perhaps precisely

44. Palestinians Organizing in the Diaspora: Part 1 Roundtable on the Palestinian Diaspora and Representation. http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/1671/palestinians-organizing-in-diaspora_part-iroundta (Accessed 23 January 2013). See also Civic Registration for Direct Election to the Palestinian National Council. http://palestiniansregister.org/?page_id=45 (Accessed 23 January 2013) 45. Washington Report on middle East Affairs, Ibid 46. Associated Press, "Inspired by Arab Spring, Palestinians Protest is Bursting with New Energy" Haaretz, 17 May, 2011. Http://www.haraetz.com/news/diplomacy/inspired-by-arab-spring-palestinian. (Accessed 14 June 2011) 47. Menachem Klein, Is the Arab Spring Israel’s Winter, Palestine-Israel Journal, Vol 18, no.1, 2012. WWW.pij.org/details.php?id=1404


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this kind of rationale that explains why in February 2011 the Israeli media confirmed that Netanyahu had offered Mubarak asylum.48

In the global media Arabs are often perceived as undemocratic, fundamentalist, and accepting of oppression and hierarchical authority, which of course jars with the notion that they would be capable of calling for social justice, freedom and democracy.52 Udi Adiv, an Israeli academic, explained: “Israel wants to maintain its image as the only democracy in the Middle East" and as the “shining star” in the Arab darkness of the Middle East.53 Israel does not associate itself culturally, politically or economically with the wider Middle East, but rather it chooses to identify instead as part of the West where the Zionist movement was founded. Thus it came as no surprise when Netanyahu, Israel’s Prime Minister, initially described the Arab revolutions as an: ‘Islamic, anti-Western, anti-liberal, anti-Israeli, undemocratic wave’, arguing that the Arab countries were ‘moving not forwards but backwards’.54 By mid-2011 however the Israeli tone had changed. The Israeli public was becoming more aware that the Arab revolutions represented a historical change sweeping through the region. At the same time, the main concern of the Israelis military and the government turned towards assessing the impact of the Arab revolutions on the relationship with their peace partners, Egypt and Jordan. Israel has struggled to maintain its political partnership with the Egyptians in the face of growing insecurity. The gas pipeline that supplies Israel from Egypt has been sabotaged several times during 2011/12. In September 2011 the Israeli embassy in Cairo was overrun by thousands of demonstrators. The ambassador and his family 48. Haaretz 3 August 2011. http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defens/mk-benelizer-israeloffered-political-asylum-to-mubarak-1.376721 49. Ian Black, “Fretful Israel monitors the crumbling of the old certainties” The Guardian, London, 18 July 2012, p 12. 50. Washington Report on the Middle East Affairs, Connecting the Arab Spring to Palestine, December 2011, Vol, 30, issue 9,pp 63-63. 51. David Byman, “Israel’s Pessimistic View of the Arab spring”, The Washington Quarterly 34:3, summer, 2011. 52. See Edward Said, Covering Islam: How the Media and the Experts Determine How we See the Rest of the World, Vintage Books, London, 1997. 53. Personal interview, 15 June 2011, Israeli academic and activist, Haifa. 54. Jonathan Cook, “Israel’s Grand Hypocrisy: Netanyahu Slams ‘Anti-liberal’ Arab Spring, Counterpunch, December 1 2011

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

Israel’s first response to the Arab revolutions was one of complete surprise and denial, portraying it as unauthentic and short-lived. As time has passed the Israeli narrative has focused more on the danger to Israel, describing the Arab revolutions as “Islamist Winter” and highlighting the risk that the “Muslim Brothers” and other Muslim “extremists” groups would gain power and become a source of threat to Israel and in that way increase anxiety amongst the Israeli public. Klein has explained that the Arab Spring has pushed Israel deeper into a ‘bunker mentality’ in the face of perceived existential threats”.49 Israel is concerned about any change to the status quo in the region, not least because for many years it has expended significant energy and resources to maintain its military superiority and political influence. Yet the status quo is indeed changing. According to Barghouti it “no longer applies”,50 whilst Byman argues that any changes in the region will impact on Israel “Even if it means the toppling of regional foes risks rocking this prosperous boat”.51

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fled back to Israel.55 This came a matter of weeks after Israel attacked the Gaza Egypt border, killing three Egyptian police officers. In response to the incident Cairo had withdrawn its ambassador in Tel Aviv pending the outcome of an official investigation. Israel later apologised for the deaths of the officers.56

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

The mass participation of ordinary citizens from all walks of life in the Arab revolutions has further discredited the notion that Western countries might be able to embed democracy to the Middle East through intervention and regime change of the type pursued in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Arab revolutions have demonstrated that change has to be home grown, owned and developed by the people in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and other countries.57 The unarmed civil resistance in MENA countries may be bringing into question Israel’s focus on the centrality of hard power and the deployment of military force to achieve foreign policy objectives. It is possible that Israel is now aware that military might will not be able to respond to a determined popular nonviolent movement in the Palestinian occupied territories. As the Israeli defence Minister Barak told Haaretz newspaper “the Palestinians’ transition from terrorism and suicide bombings to deliberately unarmed mass demonstrations is transition that will present us with difficult challenges”.58

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The seismic political changes that are taking place in Arab countries have made Israel an even more important regional ally to the West, particularly the USA. Pratt and Salt argue the developments in Arab revolution countries have distracted the world’s media attention away from the Israel Palestine conflict. The political uncertainty has also made global leaders more reluctant to advocate against Israel’s continuing programme of building settlements and confiscating Palestinian land, and the new drive to introduce laws discriminating against the Palestinians citizens of Israel. This has had the net effect of introducing further barriers to resolving the conflict.59 The wind of change in the MENA also inspired thousands of Israelis. It is estimated that more than 300,000 demonstrators took to the streets of Tel Aviv on 6 August 2011 and more in other cities, to press their demands for social justice and to protest over the lack of housing, expensive rents and the high cost of living that has hit mainly Israel’s poor but also the middle income bracket. Moshe Silman, an Israeli protester, set himself alight at a demonstration over the high cost of living. He died a week later.60 As Minister of Finance in 2003, Natanyahu led the policy of market economy that saw privatisation of the public sector and cut of subsidies for basic commodities. When he returned to power as Prime Minster in 2009 he

55. Jonathan Cook, Next year in Jerusalem: Ongoing tremors of the Arab Awakening, The big idea of 2012. 19 December 2011. http://www.jkcook.net/Articles3/0583.htm. Accessed 5 May 2012. 56. Harriet Sherwood, Israel ‘regrets’ deaths of Egyptian policemen, Observer, page 19, 19 August 2011. 57. Marc Lynch, “The Big Think Behind the Arab Spring: Do the Middle East’s Revolutions Have a Uniting Ideology” Foreign Policy, December 2011. 58. Associated Press, "Inspired by Arab Spring, Palestinians Protest is Bursting with New Energy" Haaretz, 17 May, 2011. Http://www.haraetz.com/news/diplomacy/inspired-by-arab-spring-palestinian. (Accessed 14 June 2011) 59. Nicola, Pratt, The Implications of the “Arab Spring” for the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: or “Thing Fall Apart”, Warwick University, March 2012. Also see Salt Ibid. 60. Protester who set alight to himself dies see http://www.ynet.co.il/home/0,7340,L-2,00.html (accessed 22 July 2012)


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continued with this drive to transfer services such as education, health, social welfare and others to the management of the private sector.61

These protests, along with earlier demonstrations organised by the Israeli left, highlighted the 44 years of Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza and attracted the participation of more than 20,000 people, both Arabs and Jews. An optimistic view from some activists in the Israeli peace movement argued that the events in the Arab countries gave them hope and increased support to the Palestinian struggle and that “Youth from Egypt sent messages of support to Palestinians and Israelis protesting against the Wall”.63 An Israeli peace activist summed up the impact of the Arab revolutions on Israeli society as follows: “I didn’t believe myself saying that we should learn from the Egyptian how to rise up, it was unbelievable to see signs written in Arabic Irhal (go) and under it in Hebrew (Egypt is here)”.64 However, it is possible to argue that Israel has largely distanced itself from any link to the Arab revolutions next door. This view is confirmed by the survey conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute in February 201265, where 91 percent supported the protest but only 13 percent believed that it was influenced by the “Arab Spring”. Conclusion: The Arab revolutions or uprisings inspired both Palestinians and Israelis in various ways to take nonviolent direct action to address social and political issues. The dictators in Egypt and 61. Saleh, Alnaami, The “Tent” Revolution in Israel: Roots, Implications and Consequences, Al Jazeera Centre for Studies, 8 September 2011. 62. Ibid 63. Personal interview conducted by the author with Israeli peace activist, 6 March 2012, Tel Aviv 64. http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/2379 65. The Israel Democracy Institute, The Peace Index http://www.peaceindex.org/indexMonthEng.aspx? num=207&monthname=July (Accessed 23 January 2013)

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

The campaign started with a handful of tents erected in the centre of Tel Aviv to highlight the social and economic injustices in Israel. The movement rapidly mushroomed, extending to more than fifty Arab and Jewish localities in Israel and benefitting from wide public acclaim and enthusiastic support. This movement was exceptional in Israel , bringing political and social groups from the entire political spectrum; right and left, secular and religious, Jews and Arabs under one umbrella. It even included settlers from the occupied territories which caused intense controversy. Natanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister, could not ignore this movement and immediately set up a committee to listen to the protesters and suggest recommendations. This same middle class that voted in Netanyahu was now demanding a review of the agenda of Israel’s national priorities and was critical of the ideological motives of government in spending on settlements in the occupied territories and the military cost of maintaining settlements, which has reached $1.5 billion annually. The majority of the movement avoided discussing the link between the occupation, military spending and the question of how profits from the occupation have given rise to poverty and social exclusion. A minority in the protest movement, mainly from the Israeli left and Palestinians in Israel, argued that the cost of settlements and maintaining the occupation, and the military’s budget, and are the root causes for the poverty, lack of affordable housing and high cost of living.62

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Tunisia have gone but substantive transformation of the social and political structures which maintained the former regimes has yet to take place. This stage of transformation is a daunting challenge facing the democratically elected governments, tasked with creating new jobs and providing equal opportunities for accessing health, education and other services. At the regional level, a new order is emerging that challenges Israel’s dominance of the region.66 There is a democratically elected political leadership in Egypt from the Muslim Brotherhood with strong links to Hamas. Turkey has emerged as a critical player, benefiting from its mediation role and promotion of trade with the Arab world. Turkey will be looking to strengthen its relations with the Arab countries and invest more politically and economically in this direction given the strained relationship with Israel since the incident of the Mavi Marmara.

The Palestinian Israeli Conflict in the shadow of the Arab Revolutions

One can argue that the use of largely nonviolent peaceful protest for social and political change has undermined military doctrine and highlighted the human security aspects of the citizens of the region and inspired many people struggling for peace and justice, including Palestinians. The widespread demand for democratic changes and respect for human rights has delegitimized the Arab regimes and their dictatorships, and opened the door to a new era of self determination and change. Israel is facing new challenges. Rather than a military threat, these challenges arise because millions of Arabs are upholding their democratic rights. Israel “…has painted itself into the corner of only dealing with Arab potentates and thus it cannot tolerate such a gaze: for it cannot imagine itself existing in a democratic neighbourhood”.67 The Arab revolutions across the MENA are bottom-up movements for change, not top-down change. They have been brought about by the mass participation of ordinary citizens from all walks of life and not the political elite, or the “old guard”. This has challenged the West and the US views and attitudes that they can bring democracy to the Middle East through "regime change" and the maintenance of support to the dictatorships in MENA as long as possible . The invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan aimed to topple the regime and establish Western-style democracy in the region. The Arab revolutions countered this new neo-colonial ideology of imposing liberal type democracy and has shown that true change is home grown, owned and developed by the people.

66. Nicos Panayiotides, “Is the Arab Spring Israel’s Winter? Strategic Instability in the Middle East” International Journal on World Peace, Vol. XXIX no.1 March, 2012. 67. Dabashi Ibid

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Al Jazeera Centre for Study, After the Presidential Elections: Egypt at a Crossroads, position Paper, July 2012. www.studies.aljazeera.net/en/ positionpapers/2012/07201273133138327232.htm (Accessed 18 July 2012). Alnaami, Saleh, The “Tent” Revolution in Israel: Roots, Implications and Consequences, Al Jazeera Centre for Studies, 8 Septemebt 2011. Amayreh, Khaled “Hamas-Fatah Discord on Fayyad persists” Al-Ahram 23-29 June 2011. Amin, Samir, The People’s Spring: The future of the Arab Revolution, Pambazuka Press, Oxford, 2012. Amnesty International, The state of Human Rights in the Middle East and North Africa, http:// www.amnesty.org/en/news/qa-state-human-rights-middle-east-and-north-africa-201201-10 (Accessed 15 January 2012) Anderson, Perry, “On the concatenation in the Arab world” New Left Review, no. 68, MarchApril 2011. Arab World Centre for Research and Development (AWRAD), Survey amongst 1200 adult Palestinians youth in the Palestinian occupied territories November 2011. http:// www.awrad.org/etemplate.php?id=275&x=4. (Accessed 10 February 2012) Associated Press, "Inspired by Arab Spring, Palestinians Protest is Bursting with New Energy" Haaretz, 17 May, 2011. http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/inspired-by-arab-spring-palestinianprotest-is-bursting-with-new-energy-1.362271 (Accessed 14 June 2011) Beinin, Joel, “The Israeli Palestinian conflict and the Arab Awakening”, Middle East Research and Information Project, www.merip.org/mero/mero080111 (Accessed 19 September 2011) Byman, Daniel. “Israel’s Pessimistic View of the Arab Spring”, The Washington Quarterly, 34:3, Summer, 2011. Chomsky,Noam, Hopes and Prospects, London, Penguin Books, 2010. Cook, Jonathan, On an old anniversary, a new sense that change is possible, The National, 17 May 2011. Cook, Jonathan, “Israel’s Grand Hypocrisy: Netanyahu Slams ‘Anti-liberal’ Arab Spring, Counterpunch, December 1 2011 Cook, Jonathan, Next year in Jerusalem: Ongoing tremors of the Arab Awakening, The big idea of 2012. 19 December 2011. http://www.jkcook.net/Articles3/0583.htm. Accessed 5 May 2012. Crisis Group International, The Shiite Question in Saudi Arabia, Middle East Report N°45 – 19 September 2005. http://www.crisisgroup.org/~/media/Files/Middle%20East%20North%20Africa/Iran%20Gulf/ Saudi%20Arabia/The%20Shiite%20Question%20in%20Saudi%20Arabia.pdf Crisis Group International, Palestinian Reconciliation: Plus Ca Change, Middle East Report no.10, July 2011. Dabashi Hamid, The Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism, Zed books, London2012. Darweish, Marwan, "Human Rights and the Imbalance of Power: The Palestinian-Israeli Conflict", Veronique Dudouet and B. Schmelzle (eds) Human Rights and Conflict Transformation: The Challenge for Just Peace, Germany: Berghof Handbook Dialogue Serious 9, 2010.

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Deegan, Heather, Third Worlds: The Politics of the Middle East and Africa, London, Routledge, 1996. The Economist, Israel and Palestine: Here comes your non-violent resistance www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2011/05/israel_and_palestine_0 (Accessed 16 August 2011). Elgindy, Khaled, Palestine Goes to the UN, Foreign Affairs, September-October 2011, Vol. 90 Issue 5, 102-113 Erakat, Noura and Seiklay, Sherene. “Thahrir’s Other Sky”, in Eds, Haddad, Bassam, Bsheer, Rosie and Abu Rish, Ziad. The Dawn of the Arab Uprising, End of an Old Order, Pluto Press, London, 2012. Jones, Peter, “The Arab Spring: Opportunities and Implications” International Journal, Spring 2012, pp447-463. Frangi, Abdallah, The PLO and Palestine, London, Zed Books, 1982 Hroub, Khaled, Hamas: A Beginner’s Guide, London, Pluto press,2006. Khalidi, Rashid, "The Uncertain Arab Autumn", New Statement, 19 September 2011. Klein, Menachem, Is the Arab Spring Israel’s Winter, Palestine-Israel Journal, Vol18, no.1, 2012. WWW.pij.org/details.php?id=1404 (Accessed 7 January 2013). Lynch, Marc, “The Big Think Behind the Arab Spring: Do the Middle East’s Revolutions Have a Uniting Ideology” Foreign Policy, December 2011. Mossad, Joseph “The post-colonial” colony: time space and bodies in Palestine/Israel” in Fawzia Afzal-Khan and Kalpana Seshadri-Crooks, eds. The Preoccupation of Post colonial Studies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. McDowall, David, Palestine and Israel, the uprising and Beyond, London, I.B. Tauris, 1989. Milton-Edwards, Beverley and Farrell, Stephen, Hamas, The Islamic Resistance Movement, Cambridge, Polity, 2010 Middle East Institute, Revolutions and Political Transformation in the Middle East: Government Action and Response, Volume 2, Washington, Middle East Institute, 2011 Middle East Institute, Revolutions and Political Transformation in the Middle East: Agents of Change, Volume 1, Washington, Middle East Institute, 2011 Owen, Roger, State, Power and Politics in the Making of the Modern Middle East, Routledge, 1992. Personal interview conducted by the author with Palestinian and Israeli and peace activists March and April 2012, in Tel Aviv, Haifa, Jenin and Ramallah. Pratt, Nicola, The Implications of the “Arab Spring” for the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: or “Thing Fall Apart”, Warwick University, March 2012. Salt, Jeremy, Containing the “Arab Spring”, Journal for and about Social Change movements, volume 4, (1): 54-66, May 2012. Said, Edward, The Question of Palestine, Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1980. Said, Edward, Covering Islam: How the Media and the Experts Determine How We See the Rest of the World, Vintage Books, London, 1997. Savir, Uri, Peace First, A New Model to End War, San Francisco, Berret-Koelher, 2008. Seale, Patrick, If Assad falls, we will see all the region’s alliances unravel, The Guardian. 12 April 2011. Sherwood, Harriet, Israel ‘regrets’ deaths of Egyptian policemen, Observer, page 19, 19 August 2011. Shlaim, Avi, The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World, London, Penguin Books, 2000.


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Shlaim, Avi, Israel and Palestine: Reappraisals, Revisions, Reflections. London, Verso, 2009. Smith, Lee, Weakening Washington’s Middle East Influence, Middle East Quarterly, summer 2011, Vol.18, issue 3, pp3-10 Turner, Mandy, The Power of “Shock and Awe”: The Palestinian Authority and the Road to Reform International Peacekeeping, Vol.16, no.4 Washington Report on the Middle East Affairs, Connecting the Arab Spring to Palestine, December 2011, Vol, 30, issue 9,pp 63-63. The World Bank Gross National Income Per Capita for 2010. http:// siteresources.worldbank.org/DATASTATISTICS/Resources/GNIPC.pdf

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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation By Dr. Imad El-Anis* and Ashraf Hamed** Abstract This article examines changes in Libya’s internal security, politics, economy and international relations since the start of the revolution in February 2011. Our main argument is that in order to transition from authoritarianism to democracy significant change in each of these four, mutually reinforcing, areas is needed. Drawing on data collected through media analysis and field work, we offer a discussion of the nature of change in Libya and how far the country has democratised. We claim that significant changes in Libya’s political system and foreign relations have taken place since 2011 that reinforce the process of democratisation. Within the political system these changes include the conduct of free and fair elections, the formation of new political parties, the reinforcement of civil rights and liberties, governmental accountability and the emergence of a participant political culture. Within foreign relations they include deeper cooperation with regional and international actors, reintegration into the Arab League, and rapprochement with Western states. However, we also observe that structural economic changes, in particular raising personal incomes and lowering poverty, and the normalisation of security provision are moving forward more slowly. We conclude that democratisation in Libya is taking place and there is a solid possibility that embedded democracy will emerge in Libya in the medium to longterm. Keywords: Libya, regime change, democratisation, revolution, civil war Nottingham Trent University Burton Street Nottingham NG1 4BU UK * Imad El-Anis is a Senior Lecturer in International Relations at Nottingham Trent University, where he received his PhD in international political economy in December 2008. His main areas of research include the international political economy of trade, integration, energy security and conflict in the Middle East and North Africa. He is the author of Jordan and the United States: The Political Economy of Trade and Economic Reform in the Middle East (2011) London: I.B. Tauris. ** Ashraf Hamed is a PhD Candidate in International Relations at Nottingham Trent University. His doctoral research analyses national and international crisis management approaches towards the Darfur crisis in Sudan, and his research specialisms include conflict resolution, revolutions and intrastate conflicts.

www.cesran.org

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol. 3| No. 2 October 2013


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

Introduction

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

The revolution against the regime of Muammar Gadhafi began on 15 February 2011 in Benghazi and was quickly met by a brutal governmental response which fuelled the uprising further. More than eight months of civil conflict followed, resulting in several thousand deaths and casualties,1 the destruction of large parts of villages, towns and cities, mass detentions and rising poverty. The conflict also gave rise to two United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions (1970 and 1973) authorising external actors to use military force in order to protect civilians and to establish a no-fly-zone over Libya, which NATO and other forces implemented, often engaging in combat against Gadhafi’s forces. The conflict ended in late October 2011 with the liberation of all of Libya (with the exception of Bani Walid as discussed below) and the murder of Gadhafi. In the early stages of the uprising the opposition established the National Transitional Council (NTC) to act as a government in opposition and to oversee the war effort.

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Libya now appears to be moving further along in the regime change process, with elections for the country’s first parliament in almost five decades held on 7 July 2012 and plans for the constituent assembly to write a new constitution paving the way for further elections, which are scheduled for 2014. But many Libyans and outside observers have expressed concern that Gadhafi’s regime will simply be replaced by another authoritarian regime as has so often happened in the Arab world in the past. This study explores these concerns by examining four key areas of change that are necessary for a successful transition from authoritarianism to democracy. We argue that significant political, economic, and security changes as well as changes in Libya’s international relationships are all necessary for democracy to be established. Furthermore, change in some but not all of these areas is insufficient for the transition to be complete, and therefore full democratisation might take at least several years to be realized. Several months of field work over 2011 and 2012 enabled us to collect primary information on the changes taking place in Libya and to gain an understanding of the experiences of ‘ordinary’ Libyans, whom we define as those not directly involved in government or ‘big

1.

Estimates vary significantly and accurate figures were hard to ascertain due to the media clampdown of the Gadhafi regime, the fluid nature of the conflict and limited intelligence gathering capabilities on the ground. The NTC’s last estimate issued in early 2013 estimated there were approximately 4,700 deaths amongst rebels and civilians with a further 2,100 missing and unverifiable but similar numbers anticipated for government forces. See: Black, “Libyan Revolution Casualties Lower Than Expected”.


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business’. This field work consisted of a series of interviews, discussions and meetings lasting approximately 100 hours over three months. Interviewees were selected based on their professional positions, geographical location, gender and age in order to achieve as diverse a sample as possible, cutting across political, economic and social differences. Interviews with key decision makers included Mahmoud Jibril, the former Chairman of the National Transitional Council, Ali Ashor, the Minister of Justice, Ibrahim Dabashi, the Deputy Ambassador to the UN, and Abd Alhamid Nami, President of the Democratic Centre Party. We interviewed 80 ‘ordinary’ Libyans from Tripoli, Al-Khoms, Misrata and Benghazi.2

Studies that consider violent revolutions and civil conflicts often focus on causality, duration and outcome.3 Considerations of how the process of revolution and civil conflict affect the overall dynamics and pace of subsequent post-conflict transitions are in the minority. Furthermore, analyses that do exist tend to focus on only one or a few spheres of change: usually a combination of the security, political and economic spheres.4 Policy-focused analyses often focus on quantifying the damage caused by civil conflict and its immediate political impact. Gurses and Mason5 focus on the outcome of civil wars, and in particular their destructiveness (‘loss of life, damage to the economy and fraying of the fabric of social trust’6) and the manner in which the conflict ends (rebel victory, government victory, or negotiated settlement7). Likewise, Prashad8 analyses the revolution in Libya by focusing mainly on international involvement, ultimately concluding that Libya’s international relations are the key determinant of its transition. While these studies offer some compelling conclusions on issues of human security, conflict resolution and international relations, we argue that in order to understand and explain Libya’s revolutionary transition it is necessary to examine several processes at the same time. As Joshi9 argues, revolutions are processes of change and are not constituted by single events (such as the formal removal of a dictator from power). This is especially the case for revolutions that are inspired by the desire for representative government. Central to our approach is the hypothesis that in addition to the negative impact that civil conflict has on human security, there are three other areas of change that, in combination, affect the overall dynamics and pace of democratisation. These changes take place within (1) the political system, (2) the economy and (3) within international relations. Our argument is that these spheres of change reinforce each other. The result is a wide-ranging transition

2. 3.

4.

5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

We experienced limitations in accessing other decision makers and some geographical locations. Citizens from Sirte and Bani Walid were absent from our sample. For examples see: De Rouen and Sobek "The Dynamics of Civil War Duration and Outcome", 303-320; Buhaug et al., "Geography, Rebel Capability, and the Duration of Civil Conflict", 544-569; Collier et al., "On the Duration of Civil War", 253. See: Sprinborg, “The Political Economy of the Arab Spring”, 427-433; Gaub, “The Libyan Armed Forces Between Coup-Proofing and Repression”, 221-244; Zguric, “Challenges for Democracy in Countries Affected by the Arab Spring”, 417-434. Gurses and Mason, “Democracy Out of Anarchy”, 315-336. Ibid, 317-318. Ibid, 316. Prashad, Arab Spring, Libyan Winter. Joshi, “Reflections on the Arab Spring”, 64.

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from one human condition to another that takes place at both the individual and state levels. We term this systemic transformation.10 The theoretical approach used in this study is informed by the later work of Susan Strange11 and Joan Spero12 and posits that there is a direct political-economy-security-international relations nexus, but that there can be variations in the pace of change in these spheres. Security change: internal security and stability are necessary for a successful transition from authoritarianism to democracy. By their nature authoritarian regimes encourage ‘human insecurity’ through political exclusion, physical threat, economic marginalisation and injustice.13 Since the fall of the Gadhafi regime in October 2011 we have seen that armed militias that remained armed can act as agents for stability by securing centres of government, and protecting civilians and infrastructure until centralised security is established. However, these same groups can also serve to destabilize a country by fighting each other and hindering the establishment of governmental authority.

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

Security heavily influences economic wellbeing and it is difficult for a national economy to develop under conditions of violent conflict.14 Foreign investment and international trade are interrupted, reducing economic productivity. Where states are unable to manage or contain violent conflict within their borders, external actors can be drawn in as combatants, mediators, aid donors and weapons suppliers. Even in a situation of insecurity without overt violence, international relationships will be affected. The migration of people from one state/ region to another, for example, is heavily influenced by insecurity either in the home state/ region or in transit states/regions.15

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Political change: when a civil war results in a rebel victory the conflict tends to serve the purpose of removing one government from power and replacing it with another. This undoubtedly is a significant political change in itself. However there are other relevant, if less visible, changes to consider. We adopt Stephen Krasner’s16 use of the term ‘regime’ here and use it to refer not only to government itself but also to the range of institutions, infrastructure, actors, procedures, values, ideas, language and channels of public-private communication that make up the political landscape. We assume that these elements of political structure and function have a direct impact upon the nature of politics. Thus, when considering the transition from one political condition to another, it is necessary to examine if these have changed/are changing. In the case of an authoritarian regime being removed and replaced by a democratic one,17 for example, we would assume that there would be significant change in all of the above aspects of politics.18 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17.

El-Anis, “Disintegration and the Emergence of the State System in the Middle East”, 9-28. Strange, States and Markets. Spero and Hart, The Politics of International Economic Relations. King, The New Authoritarianism in the Middle East and North Africa. Murdoch and Sandler, “Civil Wars and Economic Growth: Spatial Dispersion”, 138-151. Castles and Miller, The Age of Migration. Krasner, International Regimes, 1-21. Characterised by universal adult suffrage; frequent, free and fair elections for parliament and the executive; transparent and accountable political institutions; embedded civil rights, liberties and responsibilities; the rule of law; free media; constitutional authority; party politics; and a culture of political participation. 18. We have adopted Diamond and Morlino’s definitions of democracy and how to assess it. See: Diamond and Morlino “The Quality of Democracy”, 20-13.


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Economic change: writers including Buchanan24; Fukuyama25; Griswold26 argue that democratic governance and liberal economics are closely linked. The success of democratic transitions relies on the success of liberal economic reform and vice-versa, suggesting that the overall process of regime change will be long and uncertain in contexts where liberal economic structures and practices do not exist or are very limited. There are certainly plenty of countries in which democratic systems and liberal economies reinforce one another. However, there is also evidence to suggest that liberal economies do not always prompt the emergence of competitive democratic politics, even over a long period of time. In prerevolution Tunisia and Egypt sometimes unpopular liberal economic practices were reinforced by authoritarian governance.27 This suggests that the link between economic and political change is highly contextual and we take this flexibility into account here. Changes in the political economy that support higher employment, higher gross and per capita economic growth, poverty reduction, rising incomes and more equitable income distribution can play an important contributing role in the achievement of human security goals. Generally speaking, it is only once a person’s immediate survival and security needs are met that they are able to contribute substantively to political and civic life.28 The basic needs of sustenance and healthcare require income. Economic changes that allow for greater prosperity and social mobility allow people the time and space to engage with political 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28.

Jamal, “The Prospects of Democracy and Economic Reform in the Arab World”, 545-547. Jensen, Nation-States and the Multinational Corporation. Vandewalle, A History of Modern Libya. | West, Karama: Journeys Through the Arab Spring. 152-161. Geddes and Zaller, “Sources of Popular Support for Authoritarian Regimes”, 319-347. For an analysis of the role of social divisions (including ideology, religion and tribalism) see: Sawani, “Post-Qadhafi Libya”, 1-26. Buchanan, “Politics Without Romance”, 11. Fukuyama, The End of History and the Last Man. Griswold, “Trading Tyranny for Freedom”, Richards and Waterbury, A Political Economy of the Middle East, 239-243 & 248-252. Barro, “Determinants of Democracy”, 158-83.

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

Changes in a state’s political system directly impact on domestic economic and security relationships and foreign relations. Political instability and authoritarian governance often have a negative impact on economic well-being.19 When governance is dominated by an economic and political elite that is insulated from public participation and scrutiny, foreign investment is discouraged.20 Where economic activity is directed towards the enrichment of the elite as opposed to the development of the economy more broadly, international trade is also limited. At the same time, authoritarian governments can sometimes have troubled international relationships that can result in the imposition of economic sanctions, as was the case for Libya for much of the Gadhafi era.21 Political factors affect security in much the same way as economic factors do. In the case of Libya, the influence of political elites on all aspects of social life was significant.22 Libyan state-controlled media had long influenced what the masses knew about political, economic and international issues while state ideology was reinforced through schools, universities and other public institutions, helping to influence public discourse and narratives.23 Yet conversely, it was also the enduring rule of an authoritarian government, the closed political landscape, rampant political corruption, lack of transparency and accountability, illegitimate use of force, and limited representation that ultimately led to the regime’s demise.

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processes, while the absence of economic means tends to have the opposite effect. 29 Economic security and well-being also affect physical security. When economic resources are controlled by a select group for their own benefit at the expense of the masses the likelihood of physical conflict at the local and national levels is high. Furthermore, where the economic aspirations of the masses are not matched by the reality of their circumstances, resentment, disillusionment and anger arise.30 Where economic growth, employment, incomes and other key indicators are strong, satisfaction and peaceful engagement tend to follow.31 Access to greater wealth and resources also allows for higher levels of education, civil society engagement, individual agency and other aspects of human development.

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

Change in international relationships: for most states in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region external actors play a significant role in influencing domestic political, economic and security processes. Through the Cold War, superpower competition pitched Arab states allied to the USA or the USSR against each other.32 In the post-Cold War era many of these relationships have remained, with Cold War allies of the USA, in particular, maintaining close bilateral links with Washington, while those states that shared close links with Moscow (for example, Libya and Syria) have maintained close bilateral relations with Russia.33 Change in existing international relationships can contribute towards a shift from support for the incumbent regime (in the case of pre-revolution Libya, an authoritarian regime) to the opposition or emerging regime.34 Furthermore, a state’s international relationships can change significantly over short periods of time.35 These changes are most important in a situation where previous support had been for an authoritarian regime and the emerging external relationship(s) support democratisation.

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It is difficult for a state’s political, economic and security sectors to remain insulated from international relationships. Membership of international organisations partly results from the widely recognised need to ensure a degree of integration between a country’s national economy and those abroad, and from the need for political cooperation at the global level. Key features of contemporary international relations include high levels of travel, communication and cultural exchange,36 which have a direct impact on international relations between people and the ways in which different communities relate to each other.37 In the MENA region much of the post-independence era experience of statehood has been characterized by clientelism with most states in the region being deeply tied to one or a few patron countries and relying heavily on them for economic, security and political support.38 Change in the Libyan security context

29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37.

Lipset, “Some Social Requisites of Democracy”, 69-105. Lindsey, “The Trade Front: Combating Terrorism”, 1-16. Griswold, “Trading Tyranny for Freedom”, 1-16. Halliday, The Middle East in International Relations”, 97-129. Ibid, 127-154. See: Mullerson, Regime Change, 223-233. See: Cunningham, “Blocking Resolution: How External States Can Prolong Civil Wars”, 115-127. Smith, El-Anis and Farrands, International Political Economy in the 21st Century, 70-78. See: Ollikainen, “European Education, European Citizenship”, 6-21; MacLennan, “European Community Developments”, 182-187. 38. Sayyid, International Dimensions of Middle Eastern Authoritarianism; Lawrence, A US-Middle East Trade Agreement. 17-19.


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One obstacle to Libya’s post-conflict transition is the actual nature of the civil war itself and the way the regime change came about. One of the most concerning security issues that Libya currently faces is bringing the militias under the authority of Tripoli and into a unified security force with a single chain of command.39 While the militias remain largely autonomous the government is unable to implement its authority, including legislation relating to the treatment and trial of prisoners taken during the fighting in 2011. By mid-2013 there were approximately 8000 prisoners of war taken in the conflict, being held in over 60 detention centres largely run independently by militias that do not come under the authority of the government. Occurrences of torture, maltreatment and abuse of human rights have been reported by both international non-governmental organisations such as Amnesty International40 and international media networks such as Al-Jazeera.41

Ensuring coordination between militia groups has proven to be difficult and central governmental authority over the militias and their weapons has not been established in much of the country. The 8 May 2012 attack on the government’s headquarters in Tripoli and the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi on 11 September 2012 are key indicators of how serious the security problem has become. In the former case, armed militiamen from the Nafusa Mountains (a group that saw heavy fighting against Gadhafi’s forces during the latter stages of the 2011 conflict) had travelled to Tripoli to demand payment of salaries and medical treatment for fighters and civilians injured in the conflict. These had been interrupted by a government order to suspend such funds and services.44 The NTC claimed that they needed to investigate corruption and fraud related to these payments and would resume them once the matter was cleared up. However, the militia groups were dissatisfied by this response and fighting broke out between them and security guards protecting the NTC headquarters. One guard was killed and several others injured in the two hour battle that 39. Al Jazeera, “Can Libya’s NTC Secure the Country?”, 5 June 2012, http://blogs.aljazeera.net/blog/africa/ can-libyas-ntc-secure-country (accessed 5 June 2012). 40. Amnesty International, Detention Abuses Staining the New Libya. 41. Al Jazeera, “Who Is Really Controlling Libya?”, 27 January 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/ programmes/insidestory/2012/01/20121279497910159.html (accessed 5 May 2012). 42. Ali Ashor, Tripoli, Libya, 26 December 2011, personal interview. 43. Al Jazeera, “Aid Group Halts Work in Libya Over ‘Torture”, 26 January 2012, http:// www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/2012/01/2012126133028210385.html (accessed 1 February 2012). 44. Al Jazeera, “Fighters Attack Libyan Government HQ”, 8 May 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/news/ africa/2012/05/20125813525293203.html (accessed 8 May 2012).

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A key component of the NTC’s plans to move towards democratic government is enshrining respect for human rights, fair trial and legal representation in law. The practices of militias outside of central control, especially those not observing their responsibilities to protect human rights, run counter to these aims. Ali Ashor, the acting Minister of Justice, has highlighted that the ‘government […] is prioritising security and trying to improve law and order in the key urban centres, including Tripoli and Benghazi, followed by the rest of the country.’ He expects that this is likely to be achieved within a couple of years (by mid2014).and notes that ‘honouring’ commitments to the militias that toppled the Gadhafi regime will be important in bringing them into a centralised security framework.42 However, this has proven far from easy to realise. The aid agency Medicins Sans Frontieres halted its work in Misrata in January 2012 because its members working there were being asked to treat prisoners who were victims of torture in order for them to be ‘interrogated’ further.43

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ensued.45 In the case of the attack on the US consulate an armed group stormed the compound and the attack resulted in the death of J. Christopher Stevens, the US ambassador to Libya. Fighting between Libyan security forces and fighters loyal to the former regime has also occurred. On 23 January 2012, for example, a group of up to 150 armed men raised the Green Flag of the Gadhafi era in Bani Walid, one of the last pro-Gadhafi towns to fall in the civil war which had seen very heavy fighting, and attacked government security forces stationed there. The fight included the use of heavy weapons from both sides, resulting in four deaths and the withdrawal of government forces.46 The continued existence of proGadhafi elements in part of Libya and the fact that many still have weapons means that the risk of fighting between Libyan security forces and these groups remains a concern for the government. It must be noted, however, that there have been no significant clashes between pro-government and pro-Gadhafi regime fighters since the January 2012 Bani Walid engagement. This suggests that progress has been made in this aspect of the security situation in Libya, which positively reinforces political stability as discussed below.

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The key motivations of the protesters and revolutionaries at the start of the uprising in February 2011 were partly rooted in historical political processes which had traditionally shaped the relationship between the Gadhafi regime and the Libyan people. Government repression and brutality, unconstitutional detentions, torture, restrictions on freedom of speech, media censorship, government corruption, lack of accountability and transparency, and political repression had long been major features of Libya’s political landscape. However, the current moment in Libya’s history represents an opportunity to ensure that authoritarian rule is surpassed by democratic governance. A national constitution is to be created with the intention of embodying the key political changes that need to take place in order to move away from authoritarianism to democracy. The collapse of Gadhafi’s regime has revealed severe political challenges that Libyans have to confront and overcome in order to achieve real political transition. It is not surprising to see these challenges emerge, as the Libyan peoples’ political experience over the past four decades has been limited if it not completely non-existent.47 Perhaps most importantly, the complete collapse of the major political and governmental institutions during the civil war led to political chaos. This process of disintegration, combined with the already under-developed nature of political institutions in Libya, means that politics has had to be almost entirely ‘rebooted’.48 Exacerbating this is the fact that during the Gadhafi era there was no constitution, political parties, civil society or meaningful mass political participation.49

45. Ibid. 46. Al Jazeera, “Fighting Erupts in Libya’s Bani Walid”, 24 January 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/news/ africa/2012/01/2012123182559826642.html (accessed 24 January 2012). 47. ICG, “Popular Protests in North Africa and the Middle East (V): Making Sense of Libya.” 6-12. 48. Ibrahim Dabashi, Al-Khoms, Libya, 17 January 2012, personal interview (Libyan Deputy Ambassador to the UN). 49. Abd Alhamid Nami, Tripoli, Libya, 18 January 2012, personal interview (President of the Democratic Centre Party).


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For many Libyans, understandings of political democracy are still emerging. This includes understandings of the nature of elections and how to vote, as well as the formation and practices of political parties the purpose of a constitution (and how it is created) and the role of civil society foundations.52 However, the general political atmosphere has changed since late 2011. Increasingly, it is common to find Libyans talking openly and publicly about these concepts and various other freedoms such as the freedom of expression, free media, and freedom of thought. This reflects the desire of many Libyans to learn about politics and democracy and to become capable of being involved in political processes.53 Ultimately, popular interest and participation in politics is perhaps the most important single factor leading to democracy, the rule of law and a just state. During the Gadhafi era talking about these issues was often deemed to be a criminal act, as discussed at the start of Gadhafi’s Green Book, often leading to imprisonment and even death. Ordinary Libyan citizens have expressed concern that while they have ‘[…] been liberated from Gadhafi’s regime, [they] have not yet been fully liberated from the non-political mentality that was encouraged under Gadhafi.’54 At the same time many have a sense that there is a development of political culture: ‘We were living without affiliation, but now our feelings of responsibility to our homeland have doubled, we can help our country.’55 Regime change in Libya reflects a change in social attitudes and it will in turn have an impact upon these same attitudes over a longer period of time. Social changes, as discussed by 50. More than half of the 80 citizens interviewed in Libya highlighted that their understanding of democratic processes were limited. 51. Mahmud Jibril, Al-Khoms, Libya, 24 December 2011, personal interview (Former Chairman of the NTC’s Executive Office). 52. Ibid. 53. Ibid. 54. Anon.a, postgraduate student, Tripoli, Libya, 19 December 2011, personal interview (the interviewee wished to remain anonymous). 55. Anon.b University Officer, Al-Mergeb University, Al Khums, Libya, 15 December 2011, personal interview (the interviewee wished to remain anonymous).

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

For much of the past forty-plus years the Libyan political landscape was largely embodied in one person (Gadhafi) and his ideology. This authoritarian regime purposefully resorted to the use of a policy of exclusion and political neglect as instruments to maintain its survival. Therefore, a major challenge facing Libya since late 2011 has been rebuilding the country’s political system, improving public awareness of the political transitions taking place, emphasising civil rights and responsibilities, and educating people about the legislative process.50 This is something which the transition leadership that emerged in 2011 seemed to be well aware of. Mahmud Jibril, the Chairman of the NTC throughout the conflict, has stated that ‘[…] Tunisia and Egypt have an institutional heritage to build on, while in Libya we do not. In addition the absence of a political culture in Libya is going to make the change [to democracy] even more difficult for us.’51 Nevertheless, there have been some key indicative changes occurring in the Libyan political landscape since the late summer of 2011 that may have important impacts on the overall political transition. These changes include the emergence of a culture of political awareness and participation, pluralism in political actors, the establishment of free media and freedom of speech and association, free and transparent election and revisions to the legislative and judicial systems. These are discussed in the following paragraphs.

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Rashid Khalidi,56 are also very important in democratic uprisings. Among the most significant of these social changes are alterations in one’s perception of one’s place in society, the understanding of one’s rights and responsibilities in the public as well as private spheres, and awareness of one’s agency and ability to impact the broader community. The appreciation of ownership in the public space (in the democratic rather than socialist sense) is also a key social change that needs to happen en masse at a given moment in a state’s history in order for democracy to be realized.57 The impact on this communal awareness of ownership of the public space will be important in the coming years and it will emerge against the backdrop of competing identities that Libyans have, given their varied religious, ethnic, tribal and community affiliations.58

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Following the end of the civil war in October 2011 there have been rather sudden and overarching changes in the political landscape as multiple new actors have emerged. The NTC, for example, was formed during the uprising and has included individuals not previously engaged in public life. The rebels themselves, as disparate and dis-unified as they have been, have become key actors in security, political and even economic affairs, while civil society organisations have begun to proliferate rapidly59 (for example, the Libyan Committee for Humanitarian Aid and Relief, the Attawasul Association, Libya Outreach, and the National Committee for Charity and Humanitarian Assistance). Furthermore, many political parties have been formed and have been actively promoting their principles and policies. More than fifty parties have been established since the end of the conflict. These are founded on many different ideological principles including Islamism, and liberalism, as well as centrist and leftist ideologies, and tribal affiliations and codes of conduct.60 Ibrahim Dabashi, Libya’s deputy ambassador to the UN, views the proliferation of political parties as a good sign in Libya’s political maturing, but highlights the limitations that ‘[…] many senior party members do not have the necessary experience yet, and while they have good intentions, we still need time to let these parties develop. But, he sees hope in the ‘[…] fact that Libyans are welleducated, and their political awareness and abilities will increase given some time.’61 Under the previous regime political life in Libya did not acknowledge most of these types of ideologies and there was no notion of pluralism, which is a fundamental feature of democracy, making the current changes even more dramatic. Significant developments in Libya’s media industry have also occurred. In particular there has been a proliferation of media outlets with many new TV channels being established (for example, Libya TV/Libya Al-Ahrar, Libya Alhurra TV, Libya Awatania, and Tobacts TV). Most of these channels claim to be free from any type of government connections and provide, in addition to other programmes, political programmes with much greater space for free expression and open discussion political matters. These publicly criticise NTC officials and the transitional government. Additionally, a myriad of new electronic and print newspapers and 56. Khalidi, “The Arab Spring”, 7-9. 57. This is a key theme in discourse on the Middle Eastern ‘street’. An interesting collection of essays written by young Middle Easterners demonstrating this theme among others can be found in Weddady and Ahmari (eds.), Arab Spring Dreams. 58. St. John, Libya: From Colony to Independence, 55. 59. UNESC, Assessing Needs of Civil Society in Libya. 60. Jibril, 24 December 2011. 61. Dabashi, Ibrahim, 2012.


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A number of cities held local elections in early to mid-2012 to select their local councils, including Misurata, Benghazi, Zwara, Darna and Zawia. Indeed, as local and national elections continued through 2012 Libya underwent a very important moment on the path of democratic transition. Many Libyans have been recorded in electoral lists in their allocated constituencies and obtained voting cards for the first time. This is the first experience of this type of democratic exercise since before the 1969 coup that brought Gadhafi to power. On 7 July 2012 Libyans went to the polls to elect members of the 200-strong National Congress that was tasked with creating a new constitution (120 seats in the parliament are reserved for individual candidates while the remaining 80 are reserved for party list candidates). These elections were monitored by international and Libyan civil society groups and were seen to be fair, transparent and overall conducted effectively despite some delays and disruptions. In terms of the political parties contesting the election, Mahmoud Jibril’s National Forces Alliance (NFA) won the election with approximately 50 per cent of the vote. A significant number of the seats going to individual candidates have been won by those allied to the NFA.63 One of the key tasks that the National Congress was charged with was to choose a new prime minister and form a new government. Ali Zeidan was elected by the congress on 14 October 2012 and asked to form a government. This followed the failure of Mustafa Abushagur to form a government following his narrow congressional election victory over Mahmoud Jibril for the post of Prime Minister in September 2012. When compared to the situation before the uprising, these political developments combined suggest that significant changes have taken place and will likely continue in the coming years. In order to conduct these elections the NTC produced new electoral legislation establishing the number of seats in parliament (200), the voting system (parallel voting), the age to stand for election (21 years), the constituency to party list seats ratio (120:80) and eligibility.64 It is not possible to conclude whether Libya will become a democratic state based solely on observations of these and other changes as discussed below, but we can observe that Libyan politics is already quite different to the extent that there is now public participation, political parties have been legalised and formed, free elections have taken place and increased civil rights have been established. A particularly indicative sign of progress in the political transition is the creation of a set of new laws, written by the NTC in collaboration with civil

62. Al-Jazeera, “Building Libya’s New Media ‘From a Void”, 12 May 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/ indepth/features/2012/05/2012512141942911357.html (accessed 13 May 2012). 63. Middle East Online, “New Libya on Path to Become Civil State”, 12 July 2012, http://www.middle-eastonline.com/english/?id=53357] (accessed 12 July 2012). 64. UN News Centre, “Libya: UN Welcomes Adoption of New Electoral Laws”, 9 February 2012, http:// www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=41185&Cr=libya&Cr1 (accessed 13 February 2012).

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magazines have been established (for example, Al-Bilad, Libya Herald, New Quryna, Mayadin, Voice of Al-Khoms and the Tripoli Post).62 In time it is likely that these changes will help to raise political awareness in Libya and should help to contribute to the process of re-building. They will provide space for principles of free and civil society to develop. For example, today people are more supportive of the exercise of civil society in the form of protests and demonstrations. Frequent protests, marches, demonstrations and rallies are held across Libya, the vast majority of which remain peaceful and civil, suggesting that people are becoming more eager to engage in these political activities and more capable of doing so.

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and governmental groups from around Libya, in order to conduct the local and national elections. Change in Libya’s economic structures and processes

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In addition to the political motivations of the 2011 uprising, historical economic processes that perpetuated poverty, underdevelopment and unemployment were also an important contributing factor. During the interviews conducted in Libya for this project, concerns over economic growth and development were often expressed, and this mirrors similar research done for other works.65 A quantitative review of Libya’s key economic indicators over the past four decades or so, coinciding with the Gadhafi regime’s existence, demonstrates that while there has been significant economic growth in Libya’s GDP poverty and unemployment levels have remained high. These have actually increased significantly in both absolute and relative terms in some areas. At the same time income disparity has also grown. 66 These facts give credit to the concerns expressed by ordinary citizens living in Libya regarding economic well-being.

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As Libya tries to move forward in its transition the need to reduce poverty, create jobs, stabilise the economy and raise overall living standards will be some of the most significant and enduring obstacles to democratic change. These problems affect the concerns of ordinary people in Libya who are central to the eventual outcome of the current transition from one regime to another. As discussed above, the ability of citizens to meet their key economic demands, attain some measure of financial security and provide themselves with the economic resources to be politically mobile and engaged, are fundamental to democratisation.67 Mahmud Jibril summarises the emerging leadership’s awareness of the importance of the economy as ‘[…] being central to Libya’s progress […] there is a need to base our economy on knowledge industries and rely less on oil. This will allow us to move forward with political reforms in the future.’68 At this moment it is not possible to come to concrete conclusions about the success of Libya’s economy in meeting these key demands. It is possible, however, to explore some of the emerging economic relationships both within Libya and internationally as well as the policies coming out of the NTC and other political actors. The economy was a major factor contributing to the eruption of the Libyan revolution in 2011. As with political institutions, there has long been a near-complete absence of economic institutions in Libya that adopted clear and effective economic strategies which focused on overall economic development and raising living standards at the national level.69 Furthermore, Libya under the Gadhafi regime suffered from the absence of any real private sector, particularly one founded on transparent legal controls that would create an environment of opportunities for individuals and groups to engage with competitive

65. West, Karama; Noueihed and Warren, The Battle for the Arab Spring. 66. See: UNDP, Libya – Country Profile data; Arab League, Human Development Reports 2002-2009. 67. More than half of the 80 citizens interviewed in Libya highlighted economic concerns and the achievement of financial stability as primary interests. 68. Jibril, 24 December 2011. 69. Vandewalle, Libya Since Independence.


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The collapse of the Gadhafi regime constitutes an opportunity to rebuild the Libyan economy on a more open, internationally competitive and technology- and industry-driven basis consistent with the potential of the natural and human capital found in Libya. Furthermore, the current regime change and transition represent an opportunity to improve living conditions and quality of life for Libyans by achieving economic growth that would be more diverse and inclusive. The civil war that accompanied the revolution undoubtedly negatively affected the Libyan economy, which relies on the export of hydrocarbons.72 These exports were significantly interrupted during the conflict and some infrastructure destroyed. Nonhydrocarbon economic activity was also damaged because of the partial destruction of the country’s physical infrastructure, particularly the power grid and transport networks. In addition, the banking system was also damaged because of limitations on its ability to obtain foreign exchange, as well as the departure of foreign workers which in 2011 contributed to a decline in the GDP to 60 per cent of the 2010 total.73 In the coming phase of the post regime change era there are many things that the new government must do in order to overcome the structural economic problems that een inherited from the Gadhafi regime. As is the case with regards to political changes, rebuilding and reforming the economic system will not be easy. There are signs already that these changes are taking place with the NTC pursuing policies that encourage growth in the private sector, foreign investment, and the opening up of the economy to external competition and opportunities. The NTC has taken several steps to manage a peaceful transition and return the economy to stability and growth. One of the most important steps is the resumption of oil exports – which as discussed above are the key sources of revenue for the Libyan economy, accounting for more than 70 per cent of Libyan GDP in 2010, more than 95 per cent of its exports, and just under 90 per cent of the government’s budget. Before the revolution began Libya was producing 1.77 million barrel per day, equivalent to 2 per cent of global

70. Sawani, “Post-Qadhafi Libya”, 4-9. 71. Ashy, “Libya: Economic Challenges After the Revolution”, 3 October 2011, arabic.carnegieendowment.org/publications/?fa=45663 (accessed 10 October 2011). 72. Yahia and Saleh, “Economic Sanctions, Oil Price Fluctuations and Employment”, 1713-1719. 73. Ashy, Libya: Economic Challenges.

http://

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

investments and other market mechanisms. Some observers have noted that over the period of Gadhafi’s rule this led to significant deterioration in the country’s economic capabilities.70 Furthermore, even though Libya had resolved many of its previous disputes with the international community by 2004, there have been few signs of the expected economic benefits. This situation seems to have contributed to increasing frustration among ordinary Libyans have been ever more disappointed by the country’s low standards of living. Over half of those interviewed stated that they were concerned about their immediate economic future: ‘[t]he economy is not getting back to normal here, we have trouble getting what we need and my salary [is] lower than before’ the revolution. This is especially important in the wake of the record inward financial flows resulting from high oil prices on international markets in recent years.71 Instead, the majority of benefits from foreign investments in Libya and large-scale development projects were largely restricted to the narrow circle of beneficiaries who were close to Gadhafi and his inner circle.

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production.74 Due to the revolution, production of crude oil sharply dropped to reach a low of only 22,000 barrels in all of June 2011.75 Resuming the production of hydrocarbons and their export is the most important development in the economic changes after the announcement of the end of hostilities. Indeed, it is not only resumption of production to pre-revolution levels that is necessary, a rapid increase in production beyond these levels is also possible and will benefit reconstruction and the ultimate success of the transition period. Mahmoud Nakoa, the Libyan Ambassador to London, has confirmed that by early 2012 a return to prerevolution oil production levels was not expected in the immediate future. Instead, it was believed that production could only reach 1.5 million barrels per day before the end of 2012. However, actual production by June 2012 exceeded this figure. Ambassador Nakoa76 confirmed that production levels should exceed 2 million barrels per day by the end of 2012.

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

Another important step has been reforming the banking sector. The financial situation in Libya has deteriorated steadily during and after the civil war due to the central bank’s inability to use its foreign assets which were frozen by the UNSC resolution 1970 on 17 March 2011. This led to problems including a scarcity of cash in Libya, a decline in the international value of the Libyan dinar, rising prices and limited supply of goods. The new Libyan government has implemented a range of policies to refresh the banking sector, especially after the release of frozen assets in late 2011.77 These policies include increasing salaries in the public sector and the minimum wage in the private sector, providing liquidity in foreign currency to strengthen confidence in the value of the Libyan dinar, reducing customs tariffs, and improving the banking system which plays an essential role in the development of trade and investment.78

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The third initiative taken by the new government is the allocation on 29 February 2012 of 68.5 billion Libyan dinars, or nearly $52.5 billion, for the 2012 budget. This budget is the largest in the history of the country. According to Idris Sharif, Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry of Finance,79 the largest share of the budget will pay the salaries of state employees, which are estimated at $20 billion. A further $12 billion will be allocated to provide of food commodities, electricity and fuel on a national scale. The government will also distribute the remainder of the oil revenues, which are expected to finance key priorities set by the government, including building state, security and defence institutions as well as the judiciary. This initiative is helping to reinforce recovery in the power and communications sectors which have been steadily reconstructed since the end of hostilities in October 2011. The recovery of these sectors is essential to broader economic recovery in the Libyan economy which has not yet reached pre-revolution levels.80 74. Al-Jazeera, “Libya’s Fuel Sector Returns to Pre-War Levels”, 9 April 2012, http://www.aljazeera.com/ video/africa/2012/04/201249205013922921.html (accessed 10 April 2012). 75. IMF, Libya After the Revolution. 76. Mahmoud Nakoa, London, UK, 16 May 2012, personal interview (Libyan Ambassador to UK). 77. Al-Jazeera, “UN Lifts Libya Bank Sanctions”, 17 December 2011, http://www.aljazeera.com/news/ africa/2011/12/2011121773014678103.html (accessed 17 December 2011). 78. Nakoa, 2012. 79. Russia Today-Arabic, “Libya Declares its Budget for 2012 at More Than $52 Billion”, 29 February 2012, http://arabic.rt.com/news_all_news/news/579735/ (accessed 2 March 2012). 80. Information was gathered during an interview conducted in Tripoli, Libya on 16 May 2012. The interviewee was a leading political analyst but was not authorized to comment publicly and so wished to remain anonymous.


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Libya’s changing International Relations

By late February 2011 the international community had become involved in the revolution in Libya, with Arab League states condemning the Gadhafi regime’s response to the protests and offering financial and other support to the revolutionaries. The UNSC passed resolution 1970 placing sanctions on Gadhafi and other key members of his regime in late February 2011 (less than two weeks after the protests began). A further UNSC resolution, 1973, established a no-fly-zone over Libya and called for other actions to protect civilians in Libya. An international coalition of states from Europe, North America and the MENA region enforced the no-fly-zone and assisted the rebels.81 Moscow remained strongly opposed to these policies and actions throughout the revolution and lent its diplomatic support (and likely covert military support) to the Gadhafi regime. Following regime change Libyan relations with other Arab states seem to have strengthened, with many of Arabs states cooperating closely with and lending their support to the newly installed national leaders. In late 2011 the Jordanian government signed an agreement with the NTC to transfer, treat and rehabilitate Libyan citizens and fighters who were injured in the conflict. The NTC in turn agreed to pay the costs of medical services for its citizens. By summer 2012 approximately 50,000 Libyans had been treated in Jordanian hospitals and medical centres.82 Whilst this arrangement may have been profitable for the Jordanian health and hospitality sectors, we should also note that the Jordanian government has allowed Tripoli to make payments in respect of care at a relaxed pace, suggesting a measure of good-

81. BBC News, “Libya: NATO to Take Command of No-Fly Zone”, 25 March 2011, http://www.bbc.co.uk/ news/world-africa-12856665 (accessed on 21 April 2011). 82. Malkawi, “Libya Pays JD40m to Kingdom’s Hotels”, 12 July 2012, http://www.middle-east-online.com/ english/?id=53357 (accessed 12 July 2012).

Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

Since the revolution began there have been significant changes in Libya’s relations with other states in the MENA region and with states farther afield, including key NATO members. These changes have been solidified further in the months since the end of the civil conflict and the change of regime. The Gadhafi regime had rather turbulent relations with other Arab League states for much of its time in power and had an even more troublesome relationship with the international community in general. Gadhafi further aligned his government to African states in the past decade and maintained a close relationship with Russia. However, the position of the African Union, individual African states and Moscow through the revolution, their historical ties to Gadhafi, and rapprochement by Arab and Western states, are leading to a significant realignment in Libya’s international relations. It is still too early for this realignment to fully solidify, making it difficult to predict exactly how Libya will position itself in international relations in the coming years under a new regime. At the same time, Tripoli is largely pre-occupied with the internal transition taking place in Libya and the establishment of new domestic structures and processes. Libya is not in a position at the moment to develop concrete and ambitious foreign policies. However, the results of the post-regime change adjustments that have taken place suggest that Tripoli is moving towards embedding a closer relationship with the Arab League and the West in its foreign policy, while moving away from Africa and Russia.

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will between the governments. At the same time, the UAE has also lent its support in organising the parliamentary elections, over-seeing the production of election materials including ballot papers. When a supply of materials were destroyed in Benghazi in late June Dubai immediately set about replacing them, managing to deliver the new stock to Libya in time for the election. Libyan engagement in international forums and institutions like the World Economic Forum,83 has also increased in the post-regime change period. According to Ambassador Nakoa, Tripoli will not seek to meddle in the affairs of other states (something which Gadhafi often did) but will instead seek to support other democratic revolutionary movements in the Arab world and support stability according to Libya’s abilities (which he described as being more limited than Gadhafi assumed).84 This seems to have been the case so far with regards to Libya’s involvement in the Arab League, where Tripoli has been a strong supporter of moves by the organisation to pressure the Assad regime in Damascus and encourage international support for peaceful democratisation there. Overall, these changes in Libyan policy have served to encourage international cooperation and support for the democratic transition taking place while removing external military and intrusive diplomatic involvement.

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Conclusions

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This study has raised questions about the nature of the post-conflict transition in Libya and what this means for the potential for democratisation there by surveying changes Libya’s internal security, political system and economy and its relations with external actors. By analysing primary data collected during field work in Libya it has been possible to analyse key changes. The interviews conducted with leading decision makers as well as ordinary citizens in Libya have allowed us to contribute to existing analyses of the nature of change in Libya.85 While previous studies have offered valid discussions of some areas of change in Libya since the revolution began, few offer a discussion of how political, economic, security and foreign relations impact each other. This study demonstrates the importance of analysing change as part of a complex systemic transformation. Ultimately, we find that there have been significant (and positive) changes in Libya’s political system with the emergence of party politics, the holding of transparent elections, the institutionalising of civil rights and freedom of speech, increased governmental accountability, and the embedding of a culture of political participation. We also find that there have been positive changes in Libya’s foreign relations with increased rapprochement with key actors in the Middle East and North Africa (including key regional states and the Arab League as a whole) and further afield (in particular with the EU and the UN). These changes suggest that progress towards democracy is underway.

83. World Economic Forum, “NTC Chairman Jibril Outlines Libyan Challenges”, 22 October 2011, http:// www.weforum.org/news/ntc-chairman-jibril-outlines-libyan-challenges-world-economic-forumspecial-meeting (accessed 22 October 2011). 84. Nakoa, 2012. 85. Including in Haddad et al., The Dawn of the Arab Uprisings, 139-161; Dabashi, The Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism, 203-218.


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Libya After the Civil War: Regime Change and Democratisation

At the same time, however, we also find that positive change in the security and economic sectors is proceeding far more slowly. The economy is recovering faster than many observers expected (which will certainly help in promoting stability, reconstruction and ultimately reconciliation) with GDP growth and greater investment in poverty reduction and social welfare, and normalisation in the security sector is returning for parts of the country. However, there is still much to be done in these sectors. Libya’s economy as a whole was underdeveloped prior to the revolution and the conflict in 2011 severely damaged it. Achieving higher levels of income, reducing poverty and stabilising the financial sector will take many more years. It will also take several more years to achieve stability in the security sector. Efforts to demobilise the remaining armed militias and centralise control of security forces has stalled. The lack of central governance of security forces has led to power vacuums and the inability of the government to fully provide security, even in key cities like Tripoli and Benghazi. These factors will serve to slow democratisation in Libya but not halt or reverse it.

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Fukuyama, Francis, The End of History and the Last Man, London, Hamish Hamilton, 1992. Gaub, Florence, “The Libyan Armed Forces Between Coup-Proofing and Repression”, Journal of Strategic Studies, Vol. 36, No. 2, 2013, 221-244. Geddes, Barbara, and Zaller, John, “Sources of Popular Support for Authoritarian Regimes”, American Journal of Political Science, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1989, 319-347. Gurses, Mehmet and Mason, David, “Democracy Out of Anarchy: The Prospects for Post-Civil War Democracy”, Social Science Quarterly, Vol. 89, No. 2, 2008, 315-336. Haddad, Bassam, Bsheer, Rosie and Abu-Rish, Ziad, The Dawn of the Arab Uprisings: End of an Old Order?, New York, Pluto Press, 2012. Halliday, Fred, The Middle East in International Relations: Power, Politics and Ideology, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. ICG, “Popular Protests in North Africa and the Middle East (V): Making Sense of Libya”, Middle East/North Africa Report 107, 2011. IMF, Libya After the Revolution: Challenges and Opportunities, Washington, DC, IMF, 2012. Jamal, Amaney, “The Prospects of Democracy and Economic Reform in the Arab World”, Perspectives on Politics, Vol. 3, No. 3, 2005, 545-547. Jensen, Nathan, Nation-States and the Multinational Corporation: A Political Economy of Foreign Direct Investment, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 2006. Jibril, Mahmoud, Al-Khoms, Libya, 24 December 2011, personal interview. Joshi, Shashank, “Reflections on the Arab Spring: Order, Democracy and Western Policy”, The Rusi Journal, Vol. 156, No. 2, 2011, 60-66. Khalidi, Rashid. “The Arab Spring”, The Nation, 21 March 2011, 7-9. King, Stephen, The New Authoritarianism in the Middle East and North Africa, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2009. Krasner, Stephen (ed.), International Regimes, London, Cornell University Press, 1983. Lawrence, Robert, A US-Middle East Trade Agreement: A Circle of Opportunity?, Washington, DC, Peterson Institute for International Economics, 2006. Lindsey, Brink, “The Trade Front: Combating Terrorism with Open Markets2, Trade Policy Analysis, No. 24, 2003, 1-16. Lipset, Seymour, “Some Social Requisites of Democracy: Economic Development and Political Legitimacy”, American Political Science Review, Vol. 53, No. 1, 1959, 69-105. MacLennan, Malcolm, “European Community Developments”, European Management Journal, Vol. 6, No. 2, 1998, 182-187. Malkawi, Khetam, “Libya Pays JD40m to Kingdom’s Hotels”, Jordan Times, 17 July 2012. Middle East Online, “New Libya on Path to Become Civil State: Liberal Coalition Rejects Political Islam”, 12 July 2012. Mullerson, Rein. Regime Change: From Democratic Peace Theories to Forcible Regime Change, Leiden, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2013. Murdoch, James, and Sandler, Todd, “Civil Wars and Economic Growth: Spatial Dispersion”, American Journal of Political Science, Vol. 48, No. 1, 2004, 138-151. Nakoa, Mahmoud, London, UK, 16 May 2012, personal interview. Nami, Abd Alhamid, Tripoli, Libya, 18 January 2012, personal interview. Noueihed, Lin, and Warren, Alex, The Battle for the Arab Spring: Revolution, CounterRevolution and the Making of a New Era, Yale, Yale University Press, 2012. Ollikainen, Aaro, “European Education, European Citizenship?”, European Education, Vol. 32, No. 2, 2000, 6-21.

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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Supporting Young People as Catalysts of Social Cohesion in Conflict Settings: Some Lessons from the Democratic Republic of Congo By Guelord Bahati Mbaenda*

Abstract As social capital is emerging as the keystone of new peacebuilding paradigms, the role of young people as central actors in social dynamics in conflict-affected societies is increasingly emphasised. Nonetheless, empowering young people as agents of social cohesion remains a challenging task for peacebuilding practitioners. This report shares lessons from a programme that has tested a youth club concept in Goma, the Democratic Republic of Congo. The case study suggests that youth socialisation processes need to foster the youth’s sense of belonging, feelings of peer and adult recognition, genuine social inclusion and participation, and trust relations between young people and social authorities. Moreover, this report argues that support to such processes should be inclusive and focus on building young people’s capacity for long-term socio-economic assertion in order to circumvent violent modes of socialisation that lie at the heart of the disintegration of the social fabric of many conflicted societies.

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October 2013

Keywords: conflict, social capital, youth, peacebuilding, Democratic Republic of Congo.

Action des jeunes pour le Développement Communautaire et la Paix (ADECOP) Democratic Republic of Congo guelopeace@hotmail.com

* Guelord Bahati Mbaenda is the founder and president of Action des jeunes pour le Développement Communautaire et la Paix (ADECOP) in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a research analyst with the Toronto-based Pragmora Consulting Group for Conflict and Post-Conflict Regions and a member of the United Network of Young Peacebuilders in The Hague. Over the past decade, he has been involved with several peacebuilding projects, mainly in the areas of youth and local networks for peace. Currently, he is completing an M.A. in Peacebuilding at Coventry University, UK and completing research on the challenge of mutual influence in the partnerships between local and international peacebuilding organisations.

www.cesran.org

Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security Vol. 3| No. 2 October 2013


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Supporting Young People as Catalysts of Social Cohesion in Conflict Settings: Some Lessons from the DRC

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“When people lack connection to others, they are unable to test the veracity of their own views.” Robert Putnam1

Overview: Conflict, Social Cohesion and Youth Dysfunctional social relations are increasingly present in diagnostics of contemporary conflicts. For some analysts, they are the point where violence originates from;2 for others, the consequence of sustained conflict-induced pressure on otherwise productive social systems.3 Understandably a response to that trend, the notion of social capital is gaining prominence in the field of peacebuilding. Broadly defined as the social networks, relationships, norms and resources that members of a society contribute to and rely on, social capital and its corollary, social cohesion or the “glue that holds societies together and without which there can be no […] human wellbeing”,4 are emerging as the keystones of a new peacebuilding approach that seeks to transform as comprehensively and durably as possible social interactions in conflict-affected areas.5 Among the “new” areas of concern brought under the spotlight by this approach, the role of youths in war-affected societies is being reexamined. After a long polarisation of the debate between those with positive opinions regarding the effects of young people on conflict dynamics6 and those with pessimistic views,7 there is now a broad consensus that in many places, young people, at least in their experience of the conditions of access to social consideration, mirror social relations dynamics at play in their societies. Thus, as key indicators of the building or dismantling of social capital,8 they cannot be kept at the margins

1. 2. 3.

4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

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Putnam, Bowling Alone The notion of social conflict is built around exclusion, inequities and indignity as sources of tension, aggression and violence. See, for example, Galtung, Peace by Peaceful Means It is now undisputed that the diversion of the resources of a society to conflict expenditures affects the quality of social life (see, for example, Collier, et al., Breaking the Conflict Trap). Also, conflictinduced precariousness and uncertainty are said to erode trust, with effects on social cooperation and harmony (see for example, Fukuyama, Trust) Colletta and Cullen, The Nexus between Violent Conflict, Social Capital and Social Cohesion Found notably in programmatic approaches such as Community-driven Conflict Resolution (CDCR) and Community-driven Reconstruction (CDR) Including: Argenti, “Youth in Africa: A Major Resource for Change”, Lowicki and Pillsbury, “Recognizing War-affected Adolescents” and Yvonne Kemper, Youth in War-to-Peace Transitions Including: Kaplan, “The Coming Anarchy” and Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations On the concepts of building and dismantling social capital, see Genge, “Learning for Social Cohesion”, 2-9


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of peacebuilding processes. Indeed, a large number of contemporary peacebuilding programmes include youth empowerment components.

This report is based on my experience as an insider to the organisation and offers a glance at the context and process of the inception of the programme, its achievements in the period between 2006 and 2012 and a selection of lessons that I share as a contribution to the reflection regarding how external support can best empower young people as part of the building of vibrant, peace-oriented associations crosscutting social boundaries in conflictaffected areas.

Background to the Youth Clubs Programme Context Continuously since the 1990s, poor governance, intercommunity disputes and competition for resources and power in the Eastern DRC11 have created mistrust and rifts within and between various sections of the local society. For youths,12 whose place in society has always been marginal due to cultural barriers and paternalistic politics,13 conflicts have brought additional challenges. In fact, almost all parties in the successive conflicts have been exploiting young people’s frustration and need for recognition to enrol them in their ranks. Moreover, with the transformation over time of the conflicts into profit-driven “individual”

9. 10. 11. 12. 13.

Youth Action for Community Development and Peace. http://www.congoyouthaction.org (English) and http://www.actiondesjeunes.org (French) See, for example, Jenson’s framework of social cohesion : Mapping Social Cohesion For an overview of major political events in DRC since the mid-1990s, see Mbaenda et al., “DRC Conflict Timeline” The DRC has adhered to the African Youth Charter’s definition of youth as people between 15 and 35 years In the 1970s, then President Mobutu decreed the dissolution of all youth organisations into the JMPR, the youth wing of the newly created State party. Every young person automatically became a member of the JMPR

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Since 2005, the nongovernmental organisation Action des jeunes pour le Développement Communautaire et la Paix9 (ADECOP) has been running a Youth Clubs Programme as a conflict response initiative in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and in that process has experienced some of the above constraints. This initiative follows an approach that advances belonging, inclusion, participation, recognition and legitimacy as the key dimensions of social cohesion10 and is premised on the notion that youth can contribute to social cohesion and lasting peace if a comprehensive change in their status in these five dimensions is allowed.

Supporting Young People as Catalysts of Social Cohesion in Conflict Settings: Some Lessons from the DRC

Nevertheless, the question of how young people can be effectively mobilised in support of the formation of social capital and the strengthening of social cohesion in the context of divided societies remains largely unanswered. Youth participation in such contexts appears to be a difficult enterprise given, inter alia, the often contentions social statuses of young people, non-existence of supportive policies, insufficient resources and skills, heterogeneity of youth populations, and differences in their experiences of conflict that lead to a compartmentalised approach to young people’s problems.

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enterprises, young people have been increasingly affected by, or attracted to, violence as a means of social assertion in a context where “normal” trajectories, such as school-workmarriage, do not seem to work and social norms and values, do not exist anymore.14

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The above situation facing Eastern DRC’s youth largely stays unchanged since 2005, when ADECOP embarked in the process of creating its Youth Clubs Programme. That programme and some other youth interventions in the area at that time were, in fact, prompted by a widely shared concern among both local and external organisations that the emerging negative role of youths in the Eastern DRC conflicts and society could take root unless efforts were made to counter the mechanisms through which violence was reproduced by young people. Back then, ADECOP had been researching the impact of conflicts on youth in the Eastern Congo’s North Kivu province for some years15 and been drawn to conclude that offering young people spaces for dialogue and collective engagement with other actors in their social environment would contribute in countering the rise of violence as a currency of social interactions. A related hypothesis was that supportive gatherings of resolvedly peaceoriented young people would encourage youths who were already engaged in violence, such as young combatants, to take a new direction in their life with more serenity. And we wanted to know how to make that happen. Developing the Programme Concept During the preliminary stages in the process of developing the programme, ADECOP essentially made two steps which aimed respectively at getting young people’s contribution to a better understanding of their chief concerns and the articulation of the appropriate youth mobilisation concept, and, based on the results of the previous, identifying options for a programme strategy to support that mobilisation. Regarding issues identification and validation of a mobilisation concept, ADECOP convened four assessment workshops, two for each of the two segments of the target population (adolescents and young adults), in Goma, the capital city of the North Kivu province, between June and August 2005. During the workshops, over 260 young people drawn from various residential areas, schools and existing youth associations in the city and surrounding localities mapped the realities of conflicts and violence from a social capital approach and shared their constituencies on social interactions. The workshops used an analytical approach that captured youth relations to conflicts and violence through the lenses of social conflict as a crisis of belonging, recognition, inclusion, participation and legitimacy. The consultations made explicit group-specific realities but also several common issues (discrimination, direct violence, poor public services provision, unemployment, corruption, poverty, insecurity) and deplored the limited relationships between youths and various social actors (authorities,

14. Willame has used the term “banditisme social” in reference to the criminalisation of society in parts of the Eastern Congo where increased competition for resources and opportunities has resulted in large proportions of youth, the majority of the population, finding in militias and other forms of organised social terror the main, if not the unique, way of social promotion. As cited in Lanotte, République démocratique du Congo, Guerres sans frontière. See also Beneduce et al., Violence with a purpose 15. At its inception in 2002, ADECOP’s focus was on monitoring and reporting violations of youth rights in the DRC, in collaboration with several human rights actors. In 2008-2009, as part of that work, ADECOP relayed the voices of youth during the 10-year review of the United Nations’ Machel Study on Children and Armed Conflicts


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As for the development of a programmatic framework, it defined ADECOP’s contribution to the establishment of YCs and their integration in social dynamics based on the assessment workshops. Based on foreseeable obstacles to the work of YCs, ADECOP support in three following areas was deemed of crucial importance: 1) capacity-building in the field of youth and community organising and substantive trainings on core conflict issues as identified by workshop participants, 2) advocacy and networking support to and 3) material support for community service projects. In order to ensure consistency between ADECOP support and the evolving needs of the YCs, a steering committee bringing together ADECOP and clubs’ representatives was established. It is worth mentioning that design of the YC concept was not reduced to a one-off event. Rather, beyond initial assessments and plans, the programme stakeholders committed to making reflection on the concept a continuous process and to adjust the programme’s strategy in the light of any future changes.

Components of YCs Development Support ADECOP started supporting the development of YCs in early 2006 through three main Project Sectors, each co-coordinated by an ADECOP department and a sector lead nominated by Youth Clubs, and covering one of the three areas of support identified at earlier stages. The Training Sector was tasked with the mapping of YCs’ needs in terms of skills, competences and attitudes necessary to the delivery of their mission and the development of relevant training solutions. Over the past years, the sector has held trainings in community organising, community mapping, advocacy, communication, and project design and management; and on thematic issues, such as personal and community safety, youth-adult partnerships, social entrepreneurship and active citizenship. The Advocacy and Networking Sector was mandated to link YCs to between them and to relevant key actors with a stake in issues affecting them. Since each YC has its own advocacy objectives and targets, this sector’s coordinators, working with the steering committee, have

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Reflecting that feeling, the central recommendation from the workshops called for support to the creation of community structures that would enable youth mobilisation around specific issues of concern and foster engagement with other social actors in their communities. The suggestion of Youth Club (YC) as the designation of these structures was intended to reflect the principles of fellowship and conviviality that these gatherings were hoped to reinforce. In fact, YCs were defined as formal youth groups constituted on the basis of existing social ties or geographic proximity, with the purpose of improving the quality of the relationships between youth and other sections of the population in their social or geographic setting. And to do so, they could use any nonviolent means of peer education and mobilisation, including trainings, community service, advocacy and collaboration with others in their environment.

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interest groups, traditional structures) and spaces for youth to influence issues in their environment in meaningful ways.

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been looking at common issues in YCs’ advocacy agendas and facilitating the formation of joint advocacy and community service coalitions. Ultimately, the work of this sector has aimed at supporting the creation of social bonds through the familiarisation of young people, their communities and various leaders with the practice of constructive dialogue and negotiation. The incorporation of provision of services and equipment in the programme (the Material Support Sector) was an echo to the assumption that most YCs were likely to be relatively small groups carrying out more or less punctual community actions, and that beyond their internal capacities, inability to purchase the services and equipment necessary to their projects (communication, administration) could be an obstacle. The idea was to set up a hub where YCs could come and use equipment or services whenever needed for their community projects. In addition to economic reasons, the hub was also a way of supporting the creation of links between various youth groups by the virtue of the sharing of the same resources and exchanges about their experiences. This is the sector that has the most suffered from the limited and project-based funding of the programme. Development and Achievements 117 YCs with different membership sizes were created in the period between 2006 and 2012 in the city of Goma and the neighbouring localities of Bulengo and Sake. As shown in table 1 below, the activities of the YCs contributed to the desired outcome of a greater sense of inclusion, participation, belonging, recognition and legitimacy at two levels: internal cohesion among youth in specific social settings and youth engagement with the wider society. Evidence from various activities carried out to appreciate the impact of the programme shows that for many of the some 15,000 youths who have been members of or attended the activities of the YCs between 2006 and 2012, being part of these groups has been a lifechanging experience. Indeed, through the activities of the YCs, the following achievements were produced with reference to each of the five outcome areas. Participation and Inclusion Defined as the act of engaging in social structures and systems and influencing decisionmaking in the social setting is one part of,16 participation is the area where the YCs had the most substantial impact. Historically excluded from taking part in decision-making and to backing opinions other than those of “authorised” voices, young people were discouraged from taking any initiative towards their communities, with a concordant opportunity cost. The establishment of the YCs was, by itself, a novelty in youth social involvement for many of the youths and for many people in their communities. Moreover, although faced with restrictions to youth participation at the outset, several of the YCs managed to establish partnerships with a considerable number of “adult” structures and used the positive outcomes of their activities as an evidence of their potential to contribute to the resolution of social problems. In almost all quarters where they were established, YCs’ members have been increasingly associated with local development committees, which are entities headed by 16. Jenson, Mapping Social Cohesion, 37

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Activities for internal cohesion

Activities for wider social integration

Inclusion and Participation

Members’ involvement in needs assessments on a range of issues crosscutting social, ethnic or gender considerations as they relate to their communities; consensus-building on strategies and resource affectation to address these issues

Advocacy campaigns for youth inclusion at meetings of community and local administration bodies and for resource allocation such as in-kind and financial support to youth community service projects

Individual members’ contribution to YC’s projects and activities (labour, in -kind and financial contributions)

Community service projects in various areas, including community safety, water and sanitation, road maintenance and livelihoods

Cultural and artistic shows and workshops and similar other collective expression and dialogue projects

Intercultural and intergenerational exchange and networking between YCs and between the YC’s network and other social actors in the city, including intergroup shows and exhibitions

YCs’ support to individual projects of their members (writing, music, sports)

Coordination and dialogue with relevant decision-making bodies, parents’ groups, educational authorities, civil society organisations

Establishment of democratic decision -making structures and assignment of various missions ensuring trust and accountability within the Youth Clubs

YCs’ civic engagement, such as participation in agenda setting of local authorities and public action control processes

Belonging and Recognition

Legitimacy

chiefs of avenues or other local authorities to allow discussions about important issues. Also, depending on their areas of focus, some have moved further so as to take part in joint projects and coordination mechanisms bringing together governmental bodies, the aid community and other high-profile actors. In a context where for a long time, youth interactions with society have reflected intergroup hostilities, the YCs offered a proof that young people can do more than just organising on a defensive or aggressive basis alone. Closely linked to participation, inclusion is the extent to which members of a community have equal access to that community’s resources.17 In this respect, the YCs’ advocacy activities have contributed to a greater access of young people to the resources of their communities by helping them articulate their concerns more clearly, identify the right targets and engage in negotiation to obtain the support needed to addressing issues facing them and their communities. In one instance, a YC comprising unemployed university graduates obtained a facility and some financial support in their residential area in order to set up a small

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Outcomes

Supporting Young People as Catalysts of Social Cohesion in Conflict Settings: Some Lessons from the DRC

Table 1. Major Activities of YCs by Outcome

17. Jenson, Mapping Social Cohesion and Colleta and Cullen, Violent conflict and the transformation of social capital, 14

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computing centre as an income generating activity and provided free courses to residents in exchange of that support. This evidences the preventive potential of the YCs in a context where exclusion, inequities and neglect tend to drive young people to violence as the last resort for accessing the resources of their society.18 However, it clearly emerged from the programme that that social safety function of the YCs cannot be fully expanded unless substantial resources are dedicated to youth initiatives such as the computing centre, that incentivise members enough to pursue livelihoods away from activities that are less beneficial to the society. Sense of Belonging and Recognition Sense of belonging is the strength of identification with a social group.19 In this area, YCs have contributed to the removal of psychological and emotional barriers to young people accepting their identities as members of specific groups and of the wider society. In the Goma area, stereotyping is commonplace in intergroup relations and the images social and ethnic groups have of each other after years of violence and misery often entail demonization, discrimination and exclusion.20 As a strategy to avoid the feeling of fear or guilt that often goes with these stereotypes, social groups, and their youngest members in particular, tend to adopt isolation or dissimulation. The YCs were encouraged by ADECOP to contribute in bridging that divide. As a result, almost all YCs have a mixed ethnic composition and their activities include cultural and intellectual shows during which young people from various groups share with others the values, practices and other elements of their group’s identity. As declared to ADECOP by YC’s members during routine surveys, these cultural exchanges within and between YCs have reinforced members’ satisfaction with their identity and confidence that a collective cross-group identity can be built by the people from various backgrounds living in Goma. Such feedback is indeed a good sign that societal recognition, without which there cannot be peaceful interactions or associations between different groups, has been fostered by these activities of the YCs. Legitimacy Regarding legitimacy, or the belief in the capacity of institutions and actors leading social processes to create conditions for the peaceful and equitable management of social issues, the YCs appear to have allowed their members to experiment legitimating processes in their own structures and to appreciate relationships with influential institutions through new lenses. At the beginning of the programme, the common feeling among young people towards public authorities, opinion leaders and various other actors was a mix of fear and mistrust and many youths believed that the best thing they could do was to rely on themselves outside the “system”. Just as in the case of an interclub group that has been organising dialogues with security forces to discuss deficient protection against criminality in the outskirts of the city and suggest appropriate solutions, several of the YCs have been organising or attending meetings with public and civil society leaders on a regular basis to express their expectations, learn about other people’s perspectives and stay informed about what is going on in their areas of interest. While there were attempts by some social leaders

18. Galtung, Peace by Peaceful Means and Beneduce et al., Violence with a purpose, 33 19. Jenson, Mapping Social Cohesion, 15 and Kellerman, The deep structure of group cohesion 20. Fleckner, Reasons and Motivations

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to use the relationships with the YCs to recruit young people to advance personal political interests, in general the dialogue tended to focus more on building confidence based on clear commitments by leaders and youth to deliver concrete services to the wider society. Such developments can only improve youth relations with others in the society, especially if authorities and institutions at the macro level recognise new forms of youth gatherings such as the local YCs in addition to acknowledging them as full stakeholders in governance processes.

The first point of learning is that the type of support provided to young people and the conditions of access to it have to have regard for the circumstances of the target youth groups, in order to contribute to genuine social participation. In our experience, the YCs that managed to secure external support believe this was as a result of their “adjustment” to the agendas of those providing support rather than as an answer to their initial demands. Some of the YCs truly identified with their supporters’ plans, but in general, they had to accommodate existing conditions of support, such as the strategic, administrative and technical preferences of institutional supporters and their focus on short-term training versus longer term capacity-building. The fact that only a few of the strongly localised and small youth structures sometimes acting at the neighbourhood level were able to accommodate such conditions certainly contributed to an uneven distribution of available assistance, with the risk of creating a feeling of neglect among some vulnerable youth groups. Thus, youthfriendly practices are needed within the community of peacebuilding supporters to redress that situation. An extension of the first lesson, the second lesson is that a minimum of independence in terms of resources is critical to the effectiveness and sustainability of youth social cohesion building initiatives. In fact, conflict settings such as the Eastern DRC offer few opportunities for young people to earn a living, be it through “formal” employment or social assistance, and the ensuing precariousness is not conducive to the kind of voluntary engagement promoted by the YCs. For this reason, support to youth structures can be more effective if it helps create opportunities for members to make real, qualitative and quantitative improvements in

21. “External actors” generally means international actors but the notion can sometimes be applicable to local actors, for example when they intervene as third parties in some micro dynamics within the local society

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ADECOP established the YCs Programme as part of its strategic objective of strengthening young people’s as agents of peace in the Eastern DRC. The process has been a constructive exercise in peacebuilding support and some lessons can be drawn that contribute to the reflection on the practice of youth programming by external actors in conflict-affected societies.21 In fact, it is evident from the experiment that expanding the potential of YCs and similar youth-supporting peacebuilding initiatives to reinforce social inclusion, participation, belonging, recognition and legitimacy in youth social relations is not possible without the proper attention to the circumstances under which young people engage with others in a context of crisis.

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Lessons Learned

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their living conditions that, in turn, support the growth and durability of positive social networks. Indeed, modelling YCs such that they have tangible impact on the socioeconomic status of members was a recurrent suggestion at meetings with the YCs. This is why I believe that a social enterprise model of youth social participation would be effective at circumventing social conflicts in a durable manner where young people are involved who are largely unemployed, poor and tempted by violent life options.

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FIELD REPORT

Conclusion

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When conflicts rage, the sense of belonging, recognition, inclusion, participation and legitimacy is among the first foundations of a functioning society that collapse. The reverse causal relation is also true: several conflicts have their origins in the weakening of social cohesion. As their central role in social dynamics at play in war-affected societies suggests, young people hold the key for breaking that destructive cycle. It is that potential that led ADECOP to establish the YCs Programme. The concept of youth club is not new to those familiar with youth development and participation. Indeed, it is widely used around the world, in both “peaceful� and fragile settings. But its articulation and experimentation by ADECOP as a tool of systemic social capital building and a response to the issue of youth alienation in conflict-ridden societies contribute additional insights into the potential of youth organising to resolve conflicts and strengthen social structures. The rationale for supporting such spaces for youth socialisation in the midst of conflicts is clear. First, through the dialogue and exchange around community issues that they allow, YClike associations offer an opportunity to capture youth perspectives on social problems and their contributions to solutions as well. Second, when opportunities for socio-economic promotion are embedded in their activities, such associations constitute an alternative to violent models of youth assertion that are not beneficial to their societies and to prospects of peace. These are just two of the reasons why I believe that the community of peacebuilding practitioners and funders would affect a deeper change in social dynamics of war-affected societies if it could put more of its resources in such models of youth organising.


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FIELD REPORT

Argenti, Nicolas, “Youth in Africa: A Major Resource for Change”, de Waal, Alex and Argenti, Nicolas (eds.), Young Africa: Realizing the Rights of Children and Youth, Trenton, N.J., Africa World Press, 2000 Beneduce, Roberto et al., “Violence with a purpose: exploring the functions and meaning of violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo”, Intervention, Vol. 4, No 1, 2006 Colleta, Nat and Cullen, Michelle, Violent conflict and the transformation of social capital: Lessons from Cambodia, Rwanda, Guatemala, and Somalia, Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2000 Colletta, Nat and Cullen, Michelle, The Nexus between Violent Conflict, Social Capital and Social Cohesion: Case Studies from Cambodia and Rwanda, Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2000 Collier, Paul et al., Breaking the Conflict Trap: Civil War and Development Policy, Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2003 Fleckner, Mads, Reasons and Motivations for Violence by Internal and External Actors in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Copenhagen, Centre for African Studies, 2005 Fukuyama, Francis, Trust: The Social Values and the Creation of Prosperity, New York, Free Press, 1995 Galtung, Johan, Peace by Peaceful Means: Peace and Conflict, Development and Civilization, Oslo and Thousand Oaks, CA, International Peace Research Institute and Sage Publications, 1996 Genge, Cole, “Learning for Social Cohesion”, Educ. Vol.870, No 3, 2001 Guelord Mbaenda et al., “DRC Conflict Timeline”, http://pragmora.com/conflicts/drcongo/ timeline/ (accessed 15 September 2013) Huntington, Samuel P., The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of the World Order, New York, Simon & Schuster, 1996 Jenson, Jane, Mapping social cohesion: The state of Canadian research, Ottawa, Canadian Policy Research Networks, 1998 Kaplan, Robert D. “The Coming Anarchy: How scarcity, crime, overpopulation, tribalism, and disease are rapidly destroying the social fabric of our planet”, February 1994, http:// www.theatlantic.com/politics/foreign/anarchy.html (accessed 10 September 2013) Kellerman, Henry, “The deep structure of group cohesion”, Kellerman, Henry (ed.), Group cohesion: Theoretical and clinical perspectives, New York: Grune & Stratton, 1981 Kemper, Yvonne, Youth in War-to-Peace Transitions: Approaches of International Organizations, Berlin, Berghof Research Center for Constructive Conflict Management, 2005 Lanotte, Olivier, République Démocratique du Congo, Guerres sans frontières. De Joseph Désiré Mobutu à Joseph Kabila, Bruxelles, GRIP-Complexe, 2003 Lowicki, Jane and Pillsbury, Allison, “Recognizing War-affected Adolescents: Frameworks for action”, Development, Vol. 43, No 1, 2000 Putnam, Robert, Bowling Alone. The collapse and revival of American community, New York, Simon & Schuster, 2000

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Bibliography

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www.cesran.org


ISSN: 2041-1944 Editor-in-Chief: Ozgur TUFEKCI CESRAN International, UK Executive Editor: Husrev TABAK CESRAN International, UK Managing Editor: Kadri Kaan RENDA, Dr. CESRAN International, UK Book Review Editor: Arusha COORAY, Dr. Wollongong University, Australia Assistant Editor: Baris ALPASLAN, University of Manchester, UK Burcu OZDEMIR, Oxford University, UK Tevfik Murat YILDIRIM, University of Missouri, USA

Editorial Board: Enrique ALBEROLA, Prof. | Banco de España, Spain Kee-Hong BAE, Prof. | York University, Canada Bonnie BUCHANAN, Assoc. Prof. | Seattle University, USA Judith CLIFTON, Prof. | Universidad de Cantabria, Spain Mehmet DEMIRBAG, Prof. | University of Sheffield, UK Zeki DOGAN, Prof. | Dean, Nigde University, Turkey Kevin DUNN, Prof. | Hobart and William Smith Colleges, USA Can ERBIL, Assoc. Prof. | Boston College, USA Seyfettin ERDOGAN, Prof. | Dean, University of Istanbul Medeniyet, Turkey Marc FLEURBAEY, Prof. | Princeton University, USA Tasuku FUJITA, Assist. Prof. | Jobu University, Japan Ayfer GEDIKLI, Assist. Prof. | Istanbul Medeniyet University, Turkey Bayram GUNGOR, Prof. | Karadeniz Technical University, Turkey Burak GURBUZ, Assoc. Prof. | Galatasaray University, Turkey Elif Ince HAFALIR, Assist. Prof. | Carnegie Mellon University, USA Tony HERON, Dr. | University of Sheffield, UK Fahri KARAKAYA, Prof. | University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, USA Oskar KOWALEWSKI, Dr hab. | Warsaw School of Economics, Poland Samer MATTA | World Bank Martina U. METZGER, Dr. | Berlin Institute for Financial Market Research, Germany Ozlem ONDER, Prof. | Ege University, Turkey Ziya ONIS, Prof. | Koc University, Turkey Danny QUAH, Prof. | London School of Economics, UK José Gabriel PALMA, Prof. | Cambridge University, UK Jenik RADON, Prof. | Columbia University, USA Ibrahim SIRKECI, Prof. | Regent’s College London, UK Talat ULUSSEVER, Assist. Prof. | King Fahd University, Saudi Arabia Ratna VADRA, Assist. Prof. | Institute of Management Technology, India Yeliz YALCIN, Assoc. Prof. | Gazi University, Turkey Hakan YILMAZKUDAY, Assist. Prof. | Florida International University, USA Ibrahim Guran YUMUSAK, Assoc. Prof. | University of Istanbul Medeniyet, Turkey


Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

BOOK REVIEW

Robert Egnell and Peter Haldén (Ed.) New Agendas of State-building: Hybridity, contingency and history Routledge, Oxon: 2013, ISBN: 978-0-415-66071-6, 284 p., £ 80.00. State-building widely refers to ‘state-strengthening programmes’ with a focus on generating liberal democratic and free market states.1 Political figures in Western states and various international organisations usually resort to state-building practices in order to establish and maintain stability, conflict management and development in failed and fragile states outside the Western world. Despite this focus on state-building as a key part of peace-building efforts, the academic discussions have remained devoid of historical and theoretical input. Only recently, critical and post-colonial approaches started to reflect on the centrality of historical, contextual and local factors in peace-building.2 The edited volume by Robert Egnell and Peter Haldén is a novel contribution to this critical literature. The volume brings diverse scholars together to discuss various new approaches to statebuilding at theoretical and policy levels. The book rejects the orthodox assumptions about the nature of state and state-building. The editors claim that the starting point of the volume is its nuanced understanding of the ‘state’ as the core aspect of international state-building. In the opening chapter, the authors note that state-building ‘must be informed by a deep understanding of the state as a social and political entity, by the theory and history of state formation processes and by the specific local contexts in which these endeavours are to take place’.3 These three main aspects, i.e. the embeddedness of the state in society, historical experience and the importance of the contextual/local factors, recur throughout the volume.

Book Review

The volume is divided into three main parts. The first part discusses new theoretical approaches to state-building. The chapter by Roger MacGinty focuses on one of the main themes of the volume: hybridity. MacGinty’s four-part model of hybridity demonstrates that state-building practices generate a complex process of interaction between international approaches and local dynamics and different types of cooperation, conflict and adaptation for both local and international actors. The chapter by Morten Bøås demonstrates how the analytical perspective of hybridity can help us explain the actual process of state-building

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1. Brown, M. A., V. Boege, et al. (2010). Challenging Statebuilding as Peacebuilding: Working with Hybrid Political Orders to Build Peace. Palgrave advances in peacebuilding : critical developments and approaches. O. Richmond. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan. p. 106. 2. For instance, Richmond, O. P. (2010). Palgrave advances in peacebuilding : critical developments and approaches. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, Richmond, O. and A. R. Mitchell (2011). Hybrid Forms of Peace: From Everyday Agency to Post-Liberalism (Rethinking Peace and Conflict Studies) Basingstoke, Hampshire, Palgrave. 3. Robert Egnell and Peter Haldén, p.1.


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through the empirical findings from Somalia where a Western-type centralised government does not exist. The traditional state-building approach fails to explain the hybrid governance structures in Somalia such as the role of religious authorities, clan-based allegiances and citystate structures. Chapters by Peter Haldén and Lee Jones bring two additional theoretical approaches to understand state-building outside the orthodox approaches which dominate the current literature. Haldén's chapter proposes a focus on systemic and external preconditions for state -building. The author demonstrates, through a brief discussion on Namibia and Afghanistan, that state-building does not 'hinge upon choices made by political actors in isolation’4, the process is rather shaped by 'the character of relations between states in the region', therefore we can only talk about 'systems-building' instead of state-building.5 Lee Jones focuses on the internal aspects of state-building and offers a novel approach through Gramscian lenses. Jones criticises the orthodox approaches which promote state-building practice as a neutral, technocratic and apolitical engagement. The state-building process is unavoidably embedded in conflict over political power and distribution of resources between various social forces. The author exemplifies how compromises and coalitions between social forces and international actors actually shape the emerging state through the East Timor case.

The third part of the volume focuses on the strategic imperatives of state-building endeavours. Jan Angstrom discusses one of the least conceptualised phenomena of statebuilding: withdrawal. The author argues that withdrawal should not be considered as a military term which is akin to failure or defeat. It is an inherently strategic method to reach 4. Peter Haldén, p. 41. 5. Ibid. p. 50.

Book Review

The second part of the volume turns to historical examples of state formation in and outside Europe. Gorm Harste analyses contingency and complexity of state formation in France by adapting Niklas Luhmann's social systems theory. The most interesting discussion in the chapter is the abundance of co-option as a practice in integrating the peripheral lands into the centre as a key aspect of state formation in France. The author argues that such practices are negated as corruption and clientalism in the current state-building practice. Another example of co-option of internal factions into the centre happened in 16th century Sweden. Mats Hallenberg's chapter demonstrates the role played by the Vasa kings’ elaborated efforts in providing incentives to local elites and to the peasant communities to effectively connect them with the political, administrative and judicial network of the emerging state. Swedish example of state formation exemplifies a sustained hybridisation of top-down centralising policies and bottom-up local and communal measures. Hallenberg' analysis also reveals that creating a participatory culture is a long and historically evolving process that is subject to breakdowns and crises, not a linear apolitical process as international state-builders conceive today. Mohammad Fazlhashemi reviews the changing perceptions of Western statehood, government and legitimacy prevailing in the Islamic world. The chapter introduces the ebbs and flows of spreading European ideas among the prominent Muslim thinkers and politicians by mostly focusing on the Egyptian and Iranian cases. Although it is difficult to generalise the discussion to the entire Islamic world, the author's main contribution is that the Western liberal democratic state model cannot be simply exported with modernisation logic.

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the political goals of the state-building project. Angstrom analyses the ongoing fallacies of continued Western presence in Afghanistan to support his argument. Adam R. Grissom, argues that the technocratic approach of Western state-builders fail to recognise the local factors in Afghanistan (such as geographic and demographic conditions that prevents the formation of a centralised state, warlord allegiance and ethnic factionalism) and has so far generated only a weak statehood. Robert Egnell draws attention to the current problematic approach in state-building practice that generating legitimacy and local support is reduced to winning hearts and minds of the local population through information or media operations or limited use of force by international state-builders. The author suggests that in order to gain popular support in counterinsurgency, a close understanding and adaptation to the specific context of the target society is crucial. Reading all contributions together, three important conceptual and practical conclusions can be drawn. First, the abundance of hybridity reveals that the current state-building should move beyond the assumed universality of the Western state. State-building cannot create mirror images of Weberian states. Hybrid forms of state institutions are unavoidable and state-builders should be open to mixtures between Western traditions and local structures. Second, states are complex social and political entities. They are embedded in local, regional and global contexts at the same time. As a result, state-building is shaped by contextual and contingent factors. Third, the history of state-building demonstrates that violence, clientalism and co-option were an integral part of decades-old state formation efforts in the Western world. Therefore, we cannot simply compare today's western legitimate and 'complete' states with the states 'under-construction'.

Book Review

As seen from the contributions, the book lacks a common theoretical focus; the diverse thematic areas are only linked by concepts (hybridity, contingency and history). However, the volume claims to be the first step towards generating an interdisciplinary dialogue to bring novel perspectives to international state-building. In my view, given the wide variety of the analytical perspectives among the contributors, the case studies dominantly focus on Afghanistan which unavoidably created some repetition when discussing hybridity and contextually of the state-building process in this country. The readers would have benefited more, if the contributors had reflected on some other grand projects of international statebuilding in the Balkans, Africa and the Middle East. Yet, this book is highly recommended as a valuable contribution to the recently developing body of critical literature on conflict resolution, peace- and state-building. The wide focus on theoretical and thematic areas opens up new research avenues to question the Western template and technocratic orthodoxy in state-building theory and practice. The book addresses both scholars and practitioners to better understand and adapt to the contextual and local realities ‘on the ground’. The discussion of historical and current cases of statebuilding prompts the students of peace-building to seek new analytical perspectives. Finally, the volume encourages a dialogue between historical state formation in the Western world and the current state-building practices. Bilge Yabanci University of Bath 209


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Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh (Ed.) Rethinking the Liberal Peace: External Models and Local Alternatives Routledge, London: 2011, ISBN: 978 0 415 60055 2, 251 p., £90.00. Two decades have passed since the release of the Agenda for Peace in 1992, which, retrospectively, can be marked as the beginning of recent surge in peacebuilding research and practice. The report was written as a reply to a request from the Security Council Head of Government meeting on 31 January 1992, to draft “general principles and guidelines that would guide decisions on when a domestic situation warrants international action.”1 The institutionalization of the term “peacebuilding” appears to be a success, as many organizations around the globe incorporated the term framing their own activities in postconflict and transitional countries. This can be symbolically represented by the establishment of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission, Peacebuilding Support Office, and Peacebuilding Fund in 2005. On peacebuilding research, major publishers have released books such as Palgrave Advance in Peacebuilding and Routledge Handbook of Peacebuilding, published in 2010 and 2013 respectively,2 and the peer-reviewed journal entitled Peacebuilding was launched in 2013. More than two decades after the Agenda for Peace, peacebuilding has successfully proved to the international community that it is not a passing fad. At the same time, as Barnet et al succinctly point out, “critical differences” exist among those practicing peacebuilding activities on the ground “regarding its conceptualization and operationalization.”3 In short, the term “peacebuilding” is under extensive review. This book, edited by Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh, can be situated in this evolving debate, which is coined as the “‘liberal’ peacebuilding debate.”4 The Introduction by Tadjbakhsh frames the book by providing a brief overview of the socalled “liberal” peacebuilding debate: a clash between “efficiency-based, problem-solving investigations” and a “legitimacy-based critical approach.” The former seek to improve the efficiency of institutions based on liberal assumptions, often referred as statebuilding. While the former focuses its attention on “[responding] to what is considered as ‘objective’ problems that exist exogenously,” the latter, referred to as “critical literatures,” questions assumptions and contradictions within the model of liberal peacebuilding itself.5 From the stance of the latter, an attempt to improve efficiency is nothing but a reduction of peacebuilding to a “technical approach,” failing to recognize the “local” and indigenous institutions on the ground. With this background, the book presents an overview of the critical approach to peacebuilding research within its four sections.

1. United Nations, Provisional Verbatim Record of the Three Thousand and Forty-Sixth Meeting, Doc S/PV. 3046, 31 January 1992, p.144. 2. Richmond, Oliver, ed., Palgrave Advances in Peacebuilding, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010; Mac Ginty, Roger, ed., Routledge Handbook of Peacebuilding, London: Routledge, 2013. 3. Barnett, Michael et al, “Peacebuilding: What is in a Name?” Global Governance, Vol.13, No.1, 2007, p.44. 4. Newman, Edward et al, eds. New Perspectives on Liberal Peacebuilding, Tokyo: United Nations University Press, 2009. 5. Tadjbakhsh, 3.

Book Review

In Part 1, entitled “Theory and Critics of the Liberal Peace,” three chapters break down the principles and assumptions behind the liberal peace. In “Chapter 1: Open Societies, Open Markets – Assumptions and Illusions,” Tadjbakhsh examines the assumptions behind the two

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key drivers of liberal peace – democratization and liberalization. In “Chapter 2: Becoming Liberal, Unbecoming Liberalism – Liberal-Local Hybridity via the Everyday as a Response to the Paradoxes of Liberal Peacebuilding,” Oliver P. Richmond illustrates how citizens of the new liberal states have remained subjects, rather than become liberal citizens. Richmond suggests that the concept of “everyday” and “empathy” may be a key for more locally authentic, post-liberal peacebuilding. In “Chapter 3: Peace, Self-Governance and International Engagement – From Neo-colonial to Post-colonial Peacebuilding,” Kristoffer Lidén points out that the current liberal peacebuilding fails to interpret post-conflict and transitional countries on their own terms, and then suggests that post-colonial theory provides a necessary corrective to liberal peacebuilding discourse. Part 2 of the book, entitled “Liberal Democracy,” comprises four chapters and takes apart the theories and practices of democratization. In “Chapter 4: The Liberal Peace – Statebuilding, Democracy and Local Ownership,” David Chandler uncovers the rationale behind the spread of statebuilding discourse. In “Chapter 5: Democracy and Security – A Shotgun Marriage,” Robin Luckham points out the contested nature of the relationship between democracy, security and development. In “Chapter 6: What’s Law Got to Do With it? The Role of Law in Post-Conflict Democratization and its (Flawed) Assumptions,” Michael Schoiswohl points out the mismatch between the (re)establishment of the rule of law and the emergence of a culture of democracy on the ground. In “Chapter 7: No Such Thing as Cosmopolitanism – Field -Dependent Consequences in International Administrative Governance and Criminal Justice,” referring to the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Nicholas Dorn argues that standards of international administration and international criminal tribunals differ considerably, despite their cosmopolitan pedigrees.

Book Review

Part 3 of the book, entitled “Market Liberalism,” comprises two chapters and focuses its attention on the notion of liberal market economics in post-conflict and transitional countries. In “Chapter 8: Curing Strangeness in the Political Economy of Peacebuilding – Traces of Liberalism and Resistance,” Michael Pugh points out that neo-liberal economic reform undertaken in post-conflict and transitional countries favored capital accumulation rather than income generation, employment and livelihoods. In “Chapter 9: Economic Dimensions of the Liberal Peace and its Implications for Conflict in Developing Countries,” Syed Mansoob Murshed depicts the gap between the ideal version of how economic opening contributes toward prosperity and peace, and the reality of the developing world. Part 4 of the book, entitled “Case Studies” comprises three chapters focusing on Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan. The book concludes with a final chapter titled “Conclusion: Typologies and Modifications Proposed by Critical Approaches,” in which Tadjbakhsh and Richmond present a typology of the different critical theories and their proposed alternatives drawn from different schools of international relations theory. This book, edited by Tadjbakhsh, marks a milestone in the critical approach to peacebuilding research. One of its contributions, also pointed out by Tadjbakhsh in the Introduction, is in pointing out that the critical approach is not homogeneous.6 For example, in the Conclusion, Tadjbakhsh and Richmond summarize different typologies of the critical approach: (i) the 6. Tadjbakhsh, 5.

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communitarian strand, which questions the universalization of liberal values; (ii) the social constructivist strand, which critiques overlooking dynamics and power relations between external and internal actors; (iii) the critical international theory strand, which does not necessarily dismiss peacebuilding as missions based on the culture and values of external actors, but points out that it is based on the wrong agenda; (iv) the post-modern strand, which questions its capacity for emancipation; and (v) the post-colonialism strand, which questions the western genesis of liberal peace, and provides space for the self-representation of the “subaltern.”7 My only criticism of the book is that it only discusses this point – that critical approach to peacebuilding is heterogeneous – in the Conclusion. However, this may be because a journey seeking post-liberal peace is still an on-going endeavor. Only by taking apart critiques and examining what each strand exhibits as a possible alternative to liberal peacebuilding, can we move forward the dialogue between researchers and practitioners for peacebuilding with a humane face. Despite my criticism, the reviewer strongly recommends this book for its excellence in highlighting the current status of the “liberal” peacebuilding debate. It is a welcome contribution to peacebuilding research and practice, and peace and conflict study in general.

Book Review

Yoshiaki Furuzawa Kansai Gaidai University

7. Tadjbakhsh and Richmond, 222-233.

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Danielle Beswick and Paul Jackson Conflict, Security and Development: An Introduction Routledge, London: 2011, ISBN: 978-0-415-499984-2, ix+173 p., £ 26.99, A growing realization that development requires security and that one cannot be achieved in the absence of the other has recently categorized much of the conflict debate in the postCold War era. Theorists and practitioners are more aware than ever of the costs of conflict not only in terms of development, but of the global implications of post-conflict and fragile states. Into the discussion of the so-called ‘securitisation of development’, Danielle Beswick and Paul Jackson’s work seeks to assess recent academic theory, field research, and policy developments, and examine the implications and challenges that arise as a result of the security and development linkages in conflict-affected and underdeveloped states. Organized into nine chapters, Conflict, Security and Development attempts to provide a primer on the core issues surrounding security and development. The first three chapters lay a theoretical foundation that allows the authors to analyze security and development concepts and its academic foundations. Beginning to draw together security and development, chapter one explores the evolution of security discourse from militarilyfocused to an enlarged view of security that encompasses human security. Chapter two continues to lay out the current discussions surrounding conflict by exploring the changing state and definition of conflict, and taking a critical view of the idea that new wars are in fact new, as argued by influential academics including Mary Kaldor. Instead, Beswick and Jackson posit that conflicts today represent an emphasis shift towards different elements – for example, an increase in intrastate wars – that provide useful means for analyzing conflicts. Chapter three then offers for discussion popular narratives that attempt to explain conflict, and provides a critical examination of each including those advanced by Paul Collier and Anke Hoeffler (greed and grievance theory), Thomas Homer-Dixon (environmental conflict theory), Robert Kaplan (new barbarism and tribalism), and Samuel Huntington (structural violence). While the investigations cover the main points of each theory, the discussions are brief overviews rather than in-depth analysis of the each narrative’s complexities. Moving beyond the theoretical underpinnings of conflict and development, the authors offer practical considerations of conflict management mechanisms, including peacekeeping and humanitarian interventions. Chapter four reflects the impact of refugees and internally displaced people affected by conflict and some potential pitfalls and solutions to the Book Review

problems posed by these displaced populations. Beswick and Jackson also exemplarise the refugee camps set up in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide to underscore the potential unintended hazards that international actors face when supporting migratory populations. Development actors are the focus of chapter five, as are the various types of aid that can be provided in the case of conflict or insecurity. The authors trace modern development approaches to the Marshall Plan, while cautioning against a simplistic view of development, 213

and instead explain various approaches including Marxist and neo-liberal approaches.


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In addition to development actors, Beswick and Johnson devote chapters six and seven to international peacekeeping and private security forces. Focusing on United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions, the authors provide a historical overview of UN missions, both those they deem failures (Somalia) and successes (Sierra Leone), and a brief practical discussion of the political and logistical processes that underpin a mission. Chapter seven explores the implications of the increasing privatisation of security to companies that can operate in hazy legal environment. Taking a pragmatic view of the role of private security companies in securing and maintaining peace, the authors nonetheless provide causes for caution in the employment of private security companies, underscoring the need for accountability and transparency through regulatory frameworks. The final chapters consider post-conflict environments, and the need for security and justice through consideration of gender dynamics, and the social, economic, and security environment. The authors also explore disarmament, demobilisation, and reintegration (DDR) and the difficulties in executing successful programs for former combatants. Transitional justice also proves challenging as a result of the various – and at times opposing - approaches from local justice to the international criminal court (ICC) in attaining justice while navigating post-conflict society. Finally, the authors discuss future issues in security and development with which key stakeholders will have to contend, including the continued role and coordination of the international community in the field. The book is designed to give readers an approachable introduction to the broad conflict and development discourse. Conflict, Security and Development successfully provides an overview to a complex topic, marrying theoretical approaches with practical considerations and underpinning the critical analysis with case studies from the post-cold war era. The discussion questions provoke critical thinking on challenging issue areas including humanitarian aid and the role of international peacekeeping operations, and provide useful connections between the various topics covered within this volume. These questions further serve to illustrate the need for a holistic approach to security and development challenges in academia as well as the field. The provided glossary also eases comprehension of the topic. The volume also covers a wide range of theoretical approaches, even cautioning against a Western-centric understanding of development and aid. However, the suggested reading list provided at the end of each chapter could benefit from more diversified viewpoints and a greater emphasis on localized and South-specific scholarship.

comprehensive overview of the linkages between (in)security and development. The book goes for breadth rather than depth, however, and in some sections, including chapter six on international intervention and peacekeeping, some important considerations are missed. For instance, further consideration of the political constraints operating within the UN would

Book Review

Conflict, Security and Development is a unique addition to the conflict field in providing a

have been useful when examining peacekeeping missions. In a subject area that is constantly 214


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evolving, the work also risks becoming outdated as policy developments seek to adapt to fluctuating field conditions. The volume will be valuable to those new to the issue area that are interested in covering many bases, without getting into the intricacies that could prove overwhelming. As such, it will serve students well, enabling them to understand both the theoretical and practical components, and the ways in which they complement (or contrast) each other. The multidisciplinary nature of Conflict, Security and Development will prove useful for a broad range of practitioners and students across academic fields of studies, especially the social sciences, including international relations, international law, economics, and peace and security studies. Laurie Mincieli

Book Review

New York University

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Brett Bowden, Hilary Charlesworth and Jeremy Farrall (Eds.) The role of International Law in Rebuilding Societies after Conflict Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 2012, 330 p., £ 28.00, A workshop held by a group of scholars in Canberra 2007 was the event triggering the creation of this book. With the contribution of all participants, the focus of this volume is to examine the expectations by International Law in post –conflict societies and to what extent these expectations have been satisfied or questioned through the challenges that arise in the process of rebuilding societies. This book is divided in 11 chapters and to begin with covers more general themes with theoretical backgrounds and analysis, while moving forward with specific case study topics and questions. Chapter 1 considers the “state-building enterprise” in post-conflict states and examines in what ways the rule of law influences the state building procedure. The author uses the case study of Finland illustrating the dilemmas in the construction process. Chapter 2 is a theoretical development of contemporary state-building in history and examines it in the concepts of “politics as technology” and in imperial liberal reform with the related concepts of statehood, democracy and good governance. Chapter 3 investigates the US occupation of Iraq and the paradoxical role of international law in the process of its constitutional reform in terms of “legal formalism” and “instrumental anti-pluralism”.

Chapter 8 is about the process of treaty ratification after conflict. It examines the implementation of the Geneva Conventions as a case study of technical incorporation, referring to the requirements that must be met which indicate a long and costly procedure. A second consideration is to find the connection between the international principles that should be implemented and local understanding in society. Chapter 9 sets the accountability of the UN in cases of human rights violations by its personnel. It analyses the current legal framework governing UN affiliation with human rights and to what extent the organisation can be held accountable. The author proposes steps that might be taken in order to increase the accountability of the organisation. Chapter 10 explores the role of the International Law in protecting women’s security in post- conflict societies. Using case study data, it presents the testimonials of women relating to their expectations for law, the failures of law and its limitations. The author gives a theoretical perspective to the examination of the role of law

Book Review

The main theme of Chapter 4 is the process of defining democracy in international institutions and whether this process is successful in terms of finding an accurate context. For democracy to be successful the elements incorporated within it and how they are translated technically through procedures must have the understanding of the local system. Chapter 5 explores the concept of democracy and the legitimacy of state building of institutions. It examines the challenges of reconstructing Afghanistan demonstrating the difficulties of shaping a democracy with a “western” checklist. Chapter 6 is about the Security Council’s impact in promoting the rule of law after conflict and the overwhelming expectations it creates, by assessing the peacekeeping operations in Haiti and Liberia. Chapter 7 deals with the challenges of building the rule of law in post-conflict states. The case study of TimorLeste shows that unstable identity in a region can cause obstacles in implementing the rule of law.

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through the transitional –justice theory and the theory of “law’s violence”. It introduces women –specific laws in security demonstrating the gaps in international and domestic legal protection for women as well as the complexity between law, violence and justice. (p.232). Chapter 11 examines the function and the challenges of international criminal justice in the African Great Lakes region and critically assesses the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and the International Criminal Court(ICC) in Uganda, as they face similar difficulties in the Great Lakes. The author illustrates the historical background of the conflicts in the regions of Rwanda, DCR and Uganda and debates the role of complementarity in the Rome Statute for the ICTR level of jurisdiction. The main challenges for the delivery of criminal justice in the examined region are: the problematic relations with domestic governments, difficulties in defining the institutional role and objectives, the complexities in the cooperation and coordination with the domestic transitional justice institutions and the difficulties in fostering successful relations with the affected population.

Book Review

This book examines a range of perspectives about International Law assessing its complexities, limitations and strengths, and adequately covers these aspects. The arguments are well presented and supported via case studies of troubled zones around the world as evidence, such as Afghanistan, Haiti, Liberia and Timor-Leste with a substantial critique of the failures and dilemmas, concluding with suggestions to the point that are useful to the reader. In Afghanistan for example it is shown that there is much more to democracy than elections. State building comes with complexities and thus needs time, resources, strong foundations and must work dynamically with domestic politics in order to gain legitimacy with the people. The peacekeeping operations in Haiti and Liberia, set by the Security Council raised more expectations than they could meet. Restoring democracy and the rule of law in fragile regions is always a demanding challenge in practice, but it may find success in terms of inspiring the journey toward democracy. The authors suggest acknowledgment of the limitations of the rule of law, in order to make the peacekeeping procedure less difficult. By supporting a process where local people can actually determine their rule of law priorities and strategies, may actually create space for peacekeeping policies that minimise conflict. The case of Somalia, showed that the peacekeepers need to comply with the international law processes and the author proposes special training initiatives for better application of the human rights norms.

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The authors have examined the role of International Law by challenging its own promises for equality, justice and human rights.They have been able to shed light on the project of postconflict state-building in general and in the role of International Law in particular. Specifically, issues such as legitimacy within society, the implementation of international law within the domestic realm and the actual limitations of the rule of law, all these multi-centric factors have been clarified by the authors, in order to assess the concept of rebuilding post-conflict societies, providing food for thought in future peacekeeping operations. Merging eleven different but at the same time inter-connected subjects, this book offers academic value for the International Law’s practical assessment in state building. The authors have managed to explore the practice of International Law within a realistic perspective by promoting a critical approach to its study and evaluation. Overall, the aspects have been examined clearly, with transparency, providing the reader with a well supported


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and organized work for consideration. It is a useful book for anyone interested in the field and especially International Law students and those engaged in the state-building enterprise.

Book Review

Margarita Constantinou Lancaster University

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Douglas M. Gibler The Territorial Peace: Borders, State Development, and International Conflict Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 2012 ISBN: 978 1 107 01621 7, p. 189., ÂŁ55.00. The recent border problems between India and China drew global attention, as Beijing and Delhi were trying to resolve the issue through dialogue and peaceful means. A three-week border stand-off between the two countries after an estimated 30 Chinese troops slipped across the de facto Himalayan border they share and 19km into Indian territory created much apprehension in India, despite the fact that China is its largest trading partner. This episode reminds us the importance of territory in international affairs. Territory is perhaps one of the most common, if not oldest, sources of earthly conflict. The book under review traces the complex and dynamic relationship between territorial disputes, domestic political centralization, democratic regimes, and international conflict. Douglas M. Gibler makes a compelling argument for the crucial role of territorial issues in world politics.

Book Review

Gibler develops a fascinating explanation of why territorial issues are so different from other types of international issues, and accords utmost importance to territorial issues. He examines how these issues affect public opinion and political bargaining within the state, with a focus on the domestic salience of territory and the opportunities and constraints this provides leaders involved in domestic and international bargaining. The centralization of institutions and domestic public opinion depends heavily on the regional threat environment of the state. Domestic political centralization is likely to occur as a by-product of the state being targeted by territorial issues. The author clearly illustrates that the issues of contention do indeed matter, and makes domestic political behaviour and institutions more prominent parts of general international relations theories.

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The book, divided into three parts, begins with a description of territorial issues and international conflicts. Firstly, the author explains theoretical underpinnings of territorial conflicts and state development using empirical evidence as well as examining the salience of territorial issues for the individual. Earlier studies have dealt the salience of territorial issues at great length, but fall short of how these issues impact the domestic political bargaining within the state. Gibler attempts to develop better understanding of this complex subject through broadening argument on the effects of territorial issues. He suggests that state centralization, the size of the electorate, and the rise of authoritarianism are likely consequences for states targeted by dangerous territorial issues. These issues are a likely source of national pride, and thus, the initiation of territorial dispute will often occur during political transitions, he adds. Existing literature demonstrates the importance of territory. Gibler goes further to explain that territorial issues change the nature of domestic political bargaining and the institutions of the state. He argues that the militarized territorial disputes between neighbours lead to centralization – of public opinion, of the party system, and of political institutions. This political centralization then controls the development of the state, its regime type, and also how it fights current and future conflicts. The second part of the book focuses on the effects of territorial threat on the individual and the state. He explains that territorial threats concern citizens and foment insecurity over their lives and livelihoods. Threatened individuals are more likely to support policies that promote security, and this makes the state more likely to aggressively defend against rival with a


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strengthened military. Territorial threats not only build large standing armies but also influence group political bargaining within the state. It also helps the executive to consolidate power in a centralized government during crisis. In addition, Gibler suggests a strong correlation between authoritarianism and territorial threat, democracy and territorial peace. He underlines that the removal of territorial issues may be a condition necessary for long term economic growth. The resources diverted to the military can be better spent on productive assets. In fact, behaviour in territorial disputes is a fundamental indicator of whether a state is pursuing status quo or revisionist foreign policies. If we take the case of China, since 1949, it has offered substantial compromises in most of its settlements, usually receiving less than 50 percent of the contested land. Finally, in the third part, Gibler makes a case for territorial peace and its relations with democracies. He explains that removing territorial threats also removes serious impediments to decentralization. Further, with territorial threats removed, peace and democracy follows. Gibler opines that links between democracy and peace, negotiation, and victory are also part of a broader, territorial peace. States with territorial issues are more likely to have recurrent conflicts with their neighbours since these disputes are difficult to resolve. Gibler explains how peaceful periphery affects foreign policy decisions abroad. According to him, a stable border peace implies that democratic states are more peaceful with their neighbours, because the development path necessary for democratization selects democracies into a group of states that have settled borders, few territorial issues, and thus, little reason for war against neighbours. Thus, the proposition that democracies do not fight each other is largely a function of a stable border peace.

Based on these explanation, Gibler proposes that people put a greater emphasis on peace in territorial dispute. Making territorial dispute resolution a greater priority than democracy promotion should be on the agenda of global diplomacy. Although many issues may be salient enough to lead to war, the territorial perspective suggests that territorial issues are especially salient and especially likely to lead to conflict and war. Its importance underlies why territory is perhaps one of the most common sources of earthly conflict. If we consider the case of Afghanistan-Pakistan border region, the United States and coalition forces are fighting the Global War Against Terrorism under a desire to bring freedom and a better standard of living to Afghanistan. Afghanis, however, sincerely believed that by infiltrating their territory, international forces were attacking them and not freeing them, and seeking to hurt their Taliban brethren for no reason discernible to them. Thus, it is of utmost importance to better understand the dynamics of territory, while formulating policies.

Book Review

Challenging the democratic selection argument of conflict, Gibler introduces territorial peace argument and outlines a theory of dispute selection that is based on the development paths of states. Leaders in states that face few territorial threats from neighbours have an advantage in foreign policy because their actions are less constrained. In fact, the selection effect forces a strong correlation between lack of territorial threats to the homeland and victories in conflict abroad. Moreover, the author uses territorial peace theory to explain important changes in domestic institutions, its influence on the power of the leader. He also examines how domestic political behaviour becomes centralised when a state is threatened and how these attitudes aid the centralization process.

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Although the book is a remarkable achievement, it should be mentioned that this publication overlooks the geopolitics of access, which is an essential element in understanding global and regional political dynamics. When the global interests of great powers intersect with the interests of regional powers, their exchanges have nearly always involved access. Further, in peripheries, the impetus for progress is different, here insecurity fosters development. When internal/external threat (real or perceived) exists, the need for access becomes important in the peripheries. China’s concern for the security of its borderland created accessibility in the most remote peripheries of Pakistan and India. Moreover, the author underlines that territorial dispute resolution should come first; however, the current phase of India-China relations is based on a different model, where both countries are working together despite complex territorial dispute. Indeed, commercial interests are playing a central role in improving relations between these two Asian countries. In fact, the author’s assertion - “territorial threats lead to centralized public opinion, a centralized party system, centralized institutions, and subsequently, an increasingly repressive state” - does not augur well in Indian case. In fact, India is experiencing the emergence of more regional parties, divergent opinions on engaging neighbours including Pakistan and China, and so on. Similarly, despite territorial peace, military is required to address new security threats emerging from non-state actors. Thus, some assumptions in this book need further examination. Nonetheless, this insightful and rigorously researched book is essential reading for all interested to understand international conflict processes and its correlation with domestic politics. This will certainly very useful for students as well policy makers, and I would strongly recommend this book.

Book Review

Rajeev Ranjan Chaturvedy National University of Singapore

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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

Efraim Inbar (Ed.) The Arab Spring, Democracy and Security: Domestic and International Ramifications Routledge, New York: 2013, ISBN: 968 0 415 82138 4, 172 p., £61.63. To offer analysis on an on-going political event is always a challenging task. Yet, the “Arab Spring” has given rise to many questions about the past, the present and the future of the Arab world and the Middle East more generally. The Arab Spring, Democracy and Security: Domestic and International Ramifications addresses some of these questions. The chapters of this edited volume have been written by selected Israeli scholars focusing on “issues such as democratization, the role of economic factors in political change and explanations for variations in regime stability in the Middle East.” The relationship between internal and external politics is also explored while special emphasis is given to the impact of the “Arab Spring” on Israel and its neighbourhood. The book is comprised of eight chapters. Efraim Inbar, in his introduction, provides a background on the “Arab Spring” phenomenon; he makes a comprehensive review of the most important Arab revolts (Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, and Syria), refers to their implications on multiple levels, and touches upon the contribution of the different authors. In the following chapters Gabriel Ben-Dor focuses on the processes of democratization in the Middle East and the Arab world, Hillel Frisch deals with “the emerging Middle East balance of power,” Eytan Gilboa writes on the United States responses and policies towards the “Arab Spring,” and Alexander Bligh examines the phenomenon of the “Palestinian apathy.” Next, Boaz Ganor looks at “the challenge of terrorism” and how it is affected by the “Arab Spring,” Gil Feiler analyses “the economic implications of the Arab Spring,” Samuel Sandler analyses the “linkage between Israel’s domestic and foreign policies” and their relation to the “Arab Spring,” while Efraim Inbar concludes the book with a chapter on “the strategic implications for Israel.”

Book Review

Overall, the book succeeds to a great extent in providing insights on the “Arab Spring” and the policies of different actors, among other things. Nevertheless, the book presents three kinds of weaknesses which I will discuss in the remaining part of this review: the spectrum of subjects covered in the book, the extent to which the linkage of internal and external policies has been successful, and patterns of political/academic tendencies in the book mainly because all authors come from Israel.

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First, although the individual chapters make mention to and analyse a variety of issues, including the role of different regional powers, economic, political and cultural aspects, international ramifications and great powers policies, the scope of the book is limited if we take into account its title. More chapters could have been included regarding the role of international and regional powers – apart from Israel – like Turkey, Iran, and Russia, as well as the European Union. In that sense, the book was perhaps a little more regionally focused than it should have been, as the “Arab Spring” had implications beyond its region; also, the focus on Israel is not suggested in the book title even though it is a central theme. At the same time it seems that a methodology of academic coherence was not pursuit in terms of the structure of the book and the selection of chapters, apart from the emphasis given to the implications for Israel; in other words, a specific levels-of-analysis, theoretical,


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geographic, or other approach is not clearly followed throughout the book. Efforts where indeed made to explore democracy and security dynamics, but especially the first chapters were rather descriptive and repetitive with respect to the “Arab Spring” timeline of events – given that Inbar’s introduction had this role, the repetition of events could have been avoided. On the other hand, security is more often than not addressed based on the narrow understanding of national security, with two exceptions being Gil Feiler’s chapter on the economic implications of the “Arab Spring” and Boaz Ganor’s examination of terrorism – a mostly transnational issue. Second, in terms of the book’s effort to advance a linkage between domestic and external policies in its analyses there is some – though limited – success. Shmuel Sandlers’ chapter makes a good job in that respect considering Israel, as this was the original aim; yet, one could argue that a specific theoretical approach to linking these two levels would be more appropriate, rather than an event-based analysis – i.e. the Iranian nuclear threat, the Palestinians, terrorism and Turkish-Israeli relations. Alexander Bligh’s chapter on the Palestinian apathy amidst the “Arab Spring” also stands out as it demonstrates a good integration of the domestic, the regional and the international, with important information, albeit without a specific theoretical basis. Gabriel Ben-Dor’s chapter on the democratization process of the “Arab Spring” also made an effort to link domestic and external policies and developments. On the plus side the chapter is characterised by a consistent analysis based on democratization theory; although, the sections of the chapter do not always blend in well together and the linkage between the domestic and the external is not very clear. Other chapters also made mention to domestic and external dynamics but there was not a consistent effort for a systematic linkage between the two.

2) There is a strong feeling of caution towards Turkey – not to mention Iran – throughout the book. A case in point is Inbar’s claim that “A combination of nationalism, neo-Ottoman nostalgia and Islamic-jihadist impulses has pushed Turkey into an aggressive posture on several regional issues” (p.156). Turkey has indeed been more assertive the past years, and Inbar provides examples, but the adjectives given to Turkey have not been thoroughly analysed. Inbar goes as far as to say that Turkish troops in Cyprus might even advance further and take over the rest of the Island, which is a very serious and improbable scenario to suggest; in any case it is not sufficiently analysed in the chapter to warrant the suggestion.

Book Review

Lastly, the fact that all authors are Israelis has one advantage and one disadvantage. On the one hand these scholars know the region – and Israel – well, and this is very positive considering the book’s focus on the impact of the “Arab Spring” on Israel. On the other hand, there seems to be a largely one-sided political perspective throughout the book which manifests in three ways: 1) there is a static understanding of (political) Islam and a tendency to demonize it by presenting it as the main cause of many regional evils, such as the radicalization of the newly-emerged regimes, terrorism and foreign policy changes in countries like Turkey. This might well be the case, but perhaps a more dynamic, in-depth, and less simplistic approach to political Islam would be more appropriate.

3) The authors of the book, because of their emphasis on Israeli policies come often across as mostly geo-strategists rather than geo-political analysts. That is not wrong in and of itself but 224


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the reader gets the feeling that the book was primarily written to advise Israel rather than analyse the “Arab Spring.” In that respect the authors are often understood to be emotionally engaged in their analysis while the nature of the book reminds us of the task that the current Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoǧlu1, undertook more than a decade ago when he wrote Strategic Depth as a geo-strategist giving policy advice to Turkey. In general, it becomes obvious that there is indeed a historically rooted security culture of geopolitical insecurity among academics and politicians alike in Israel, and this manifests in the book. It may be justified but at the same time it could sometimes prevent outside-of-thebox thinking and perhaps lead to biased conclusions, as opposed to a more objective and sober analysis.

Book Review

Zenonas Tziarras University of Warwick

225

1. Ahmet Davutoǧlu, Stratejik Derinlik: Türkiye'nin Uluslararasi Konumu [Strategic Depth: Turkey’s International Position], Aksaray, İstanbul, Küre Yayınları, 2001.


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PublicationDate: Date: Publication

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Journal of Conflict Transformation & Security

Rebecca Roberts Palestinians in Lebanon: Refugees Living with Long-term Displacement I.B. Tauris, New York: 2010, ISBN: 978 1 84511 971 3, 256 p., ÂŁ 56.00, Combining research methods for a holistic approach, this book provides an interesting and important assessment of the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon as a refugee community in itself, and as a basis for a wider analysis of protracted refugee communities. Many important issues are individually highlighted, and linked with the aim of developing recommendations to inform future intervention planning. The introduction clearly provides background and context to what is to follow and includes a useful overview of how the author intends to proceed and achieve the purpose of the book, which is, ‘Using the experiences of the Palestinians in refugee camps in Lebanon as an example, this book examines the impact of protracted refugee status on coping mechanisms’ (p.3). The second chapter analyses the political and legal frameworks surrounding refugees, addresses the history of refugee law and places the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon in the context of protracted refugee groups. Chapter three looks at various aspects related to assistance to refugees, namely the question of providing relief as opposed to focusing on long-term developmental interventions. Interestingly it includes an analysis of the pros and cons of maintaining refugee camps, and highlights the trend of perceiving refugees not as resourceful but as victims.

Book Review

Chapter four builds on the introduction, providing further historical and political perspectives of the Palestinian refugees within the Lebanese context since the 1940s. This provides the base for chapter five, which analyses the political and socio-economic situation the refugees live in within the host country. In chapter six the author summarises the findings of the research conducted, this includes gathering information from focus groups, individual interviews and placing herself within the community for a period of time. This was done in three of the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon in different geographical locations. The findings of this research, focusing on identifying the vulnerabilities and capacities of the refugees in each of the camps, are displayed in both narrative and tabular form in the chapter. Chapter, seven, takes the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon as an example of a protracted refugee community to identify external factors that impact them and groups in similar situations. In the final chapter the separate analyses of the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and issues relating to assistance to refugee communities around the world are clearly linked where relevant, and coherently brought together to develop recommendations for future interventions.

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The core arguments in this book focus on developing an understanding of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon from both a developmental perspective, and as an example of a protracted refugee situation. The first area highlights the the needs of refugees through stipulating that refugee law needs to be updated and revised. In fact the current refugee law was developed in response to the situation in Europe in the post-World War II era. Consequently, not only the needs of refugees have changed over the years, but also the types of communities who are refugees. The main example of the latter is the Palestinian refugees, who are not covered under UNHCR but by an agency established specifically to cater for


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them. The publication follows on by highlighting the fact that the needs of many current refugee communities are not emergency response related but increasingly developmental as many become protracted refugee situations. The book also clearly highlights the fact that there is a severe lack of engagement with the target beneficiaries in developing programmes designed to decrease the vulnerabilities of refugee communities. Consequently communities become dependent on assistance because they are reliant on interventions targeting vulnerabilities as perceived by external actors through a process they have not participated in, which overlooks the coping mechanisms they have developed themselves. The use of the case study of the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon highlights this clearly, where funding for programmes is relatively easily secured for women and people with disabilities but not unemployed men and youths. Providing a link between the case study and the more general analysis of international intervention considerations, the book also questions the current policies that inform responses to refugee situations. It does this through an analysis of the most effective mechanisms currently utilised to address protracted refugee situations. For instance, there is a detailed analysis of placing refugees in camps as opposed to facilitating their integration into new environments. The only missed opportunity is that this publication lacks the more recent changes that have occurred since the research was conducted and before publishing which may have impacted the findings in Chapter six. However, considering the nature of this type of research and the volatility of the subject matter - the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon as part of the wider Palestine/Israel conflict and the Middle East in general – it is understandable. Moreover, it is clear that the author made efforts to reflect on some events such as the 2007 Nahr El-Bared conflict.

Abigail Bainbridge Freelance Consultant

Book Review

Hence, this book is highly recommended to those with an interest in the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and the wider Palestinian issue. Even those with a wide and in depth knowledge of the issue would greatly benefit from reading an approach from a slightly different perspective than the usual focus on the political implications of the Palestinian refugees as part of the peace process. In addition, it provides a useful insight into a refugee community often overlooked in general discussions focusing on refugees for those whose primary interest is international refugee law and refugee response planning and implementation. Whilst not the main focus of the book it is important to note the underlying core theme of the need for people interested in both of the above, in addition to development practioners, to ensure that the target beneficiaries are also the main contributors to developing programmes designed to assist them, which consequently would facilitate the shift from treating refugees as victims to survivors.

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Journal of Conflict Transformation and Security

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