Regional Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution : A Comparative Approach
This volume examines mechanisms for regional pacification and conflict resolution in Europe and the Middle East.
Scholars in international relations have noted in the past that while much effort has been in discovering the causes of war, little research has been devoted so far to uncovering the conditions for peace, and the factors that contribute to stabilizing the state of peace. In this book, the authors attempt to assess the factors that contribute to regional (rather than state-to-state) pacification. As part of the recent resurgence of scholarly interest in regions and regionalism , several studies have been devoted to the subject of regional peace and peacemaking but almost no study to date has made a systematic comparison of two regions that are particularly prominent and important for the subject of regional pacification: Europe and the Middle East. These two regions occupy opposite poles on the war-to-peace continuum.
Europe is the paradigmatic 20th-century case of successful peacemaking that has exceeded all initial expectations. In about half a century (since 1945) E urope has gone from being the world’s most dangerous war zone to a zone of peace - with a level of peace that has not been equaled before or since. The European zone of peace has expanded since t h e end o f the Cold Wa r to include Eastern Europe, and it continues to f lourish despite the recent economic crisis. In contrast, the Middle East re m a i ns enmired in conflicts –both domestic and regional. The decades-long Arab-Israeli (and particularly Palestinian-Israeli) conflict remains one of the world’s most intractable, and stubbornly resists all attempts at resolution. In addition, there is also a variety of other conflicts in the region, both inter-state are domestic in origin, that are unrelated to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict -- as was seen, for example, in the recent (and still unfolding) events of the “Arab Spring”.
This work evaluates the research on regional pacification, the incentives that motivate states in establishing peaceful relations, and most importantly, how regions become peaceful, by identifying the causal mechanisms between various war outcomes and the prospects for establishing regional peace. It discusses the conditions under which various types of “peace” might emerge on a regional level – warm peace, cold peace, etc, and the factors most likely to determine the outcome.
This work will be of much interest to students of regional security, peacemaking, conflict mangement, Middle East politics, European security and IR in general.