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  • Author: Simon Henderson
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Just short of four years since Crown Prince Abdullah, while on a trip to Washington, met leaders of U.S. energy companies to discuss cooperation efforts, negotiations to secure $25 billion of investment for Saudi gas projects have broken down. A policy that should have cemented the energy-supply facet of Washington's sixty-year friendship with Riyadh is in tatters, alongside the diplomatic and military relationships, themselves frayed by a purported lack of Saudi cooperation since the September 11 attacks.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On July 19 — less than a month after President George W. Bush's call for Palestinian reform and just two days after the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades' latest terrorist attack — the State Department released its latest Palestine Liberation Organization Commitments Compliance Act (PLOCCA) report. This new report is a mixture of increased truth telling (the good), old formulations (the bad), and irrelevant standards for what constitutes supporting terrorism (the ugly). In total, despite the improvement over past PLOCCA reports, the current report undercuts the Bush administration's nascent policy of pushing the peace process forward by demanding the establishment of consequences for noncompliance with peace commitments.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Helena Kane Finn
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The speech delivered by Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz at the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) in Istanbul on July 14 was a detailed, comprehensive statement of U.S. policy on Turkey. In the clearest expression of U.S. policy on Turkish-Iraqi relations to date, Wolfowitz observed that "it is vital to Turkey for the people of Iraq to govern themselves democratically, with full respect for the rights of minorities, including the Turcomans, and to maintain the territorial integrity of Iraq." Yet, how will current Turkish crises affect the prospects for U.S.-Turkish cooperation on Iraq?
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Following preparatory meetings on Palestinian reform between Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Elizabeth Cheney and European officials, the Quartet (the United States, the European Union [EU], the UN, and Russia) met this week in New York. The Quartet established an International Task Force on Palestinian Reform with seven subcommittees, which are to meet quarterly. As talks about Palestinian political reform progress, the donors intend to find an acceptable means enabling the group to begin disbursing $1.2 billion in donor funds to the Palestinians.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, United Nations, Reform
  • Political Geography: New York, Middle East, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Simon Henderson
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Earlier this month, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) published the Arab Human Development Report 2002, a critical look at development in the Arab world. Written by Arab scholars, it attempts to explain why Arab societies lag behind much of the rest of the world in key areas of economic, political, and social progress. The report has been hailed for the honesty of its conclusions, which assert that the Arab world has deficits in three areas: freedom, knowledge, and the participation of women in economic, professional, and political activities. Moreover, the details and methodology of the study itself offer further, perhaps unintended insights.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In the most significant Bush administration pronouncement on Arab-Israeli issues since President George W. Bush's landmark June 24 speech, Secretary of State Colin Powell joined with leaders from the United Nations (UN), the European Union (EU), and Russia in issuing a "joint statement" on Middle East policy in New York yesterday. In characterizing the meeting of "Quartet" diplomats that produced the statement, much of today's media reportage highlighted the contrast between Secretary Powell's fealty to the president's security-first approach and the preference of the other Quartet members for pursuing security, political, and humanitarian objectives simultaneously. Yet, a close reading of the Quartet's statement shows a different trend — namely, a disquieting resurrection of pre-June 24 prescriptions for Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking, as well as acquiescence by U.S. participants in subtle yet meaningful backtracking in key areas of policy.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, New York, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Thomas G. McInerney
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In his June 1 West Point address, President George W. Bush announced a policy of using preemption against countries that support terrorism and can deliver weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The preeminent such case in the world is the government of Iraqi president Saddam Husayn. The United States can no longer tolerate that regime and must take action in order to succeed in its broader war on terrorism. A U.S. campaign against Iraq should have four objectives: 1) remove Saddam Husayn and his supporters from power, 2) install an Iraqi government based on democratic principles, 3) rebuild the Iraqi economy, and 4) eliminate Iraq's WMD.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On June 24, 2002, President George W. Bush stated, "Peace requires a new and different Palestinian leadership, so that a Palestinian state can be born." His speech elicited initial favorable reaction from Arab governments, which has evolved amid negative Arab media response.
  • Topic: Security, Government, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Helena Kane Finn
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Simmering political problems in Turkey reached a boil following the resignation of the deputy prime minister this week, throwing into doubt both the health of the Ecevit government and Turkey's critical negotiations with the European Union (EU). The current situation, which is fluid and unpredictable, will also have ramifications for Turkey's role in U.S. efforts regarding Iraq.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Phillip Gibbons
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Since 1991, the United States has averaged over 34,000 military sorties per year in support of no-fly zone operations in Iraq. One might ask, to what effect?
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Simon Henderson
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Over the course of a few days at the end of May, Iran conducted a missile test; Pakistan conducted three such tests; and Israel launched a reconnaissance satellite. Each of these instances serve as proof, if any were needed, that missiles are becoming an important part of the military scene in the Middle East and Southwest Asia. The question for Washington is how the growing sophistication of Middle East/Southwest Asian missiles will affect the stability of this volatile region.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, United States, Middle East, Israel, Asia, Arabia
  • Author: Malik Mufti
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Since October 1998, Turkey has moved from the brink of war with Syria to the brink of signing a military cooperation agreement: Syrian chief of staff Gen. Hassan al-Turkomani will pay an official visit to Turkey on June 19, the first such visit by a Syrian chief of staff. The changes that have occurred in the Turkish-Syrian relationship are illustrative of the volatility of Turkey's general Middle East policy during the last decade.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Josef Joffe, R. James Woolsey
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Although the current campaign against terrorism is just unfolding, America has actually been in the middle of a new "World War" of sorts for some time. In order to understand this war, one must answer three crucial questions: 1) With whom is the United States at war? 2) Why is America at war with these particular adversaries? 3) How should the United States conduct this war, both at home and abroad?
  • Topic: Security, Politics, Religion, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Europe, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Michael Rubin
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On May 22, 2002, Iranians demonstrated in the heart of Tehran, chanting antigovernment slogans. Riot police clashed with protestors on Vali Asr Avenue, the city's main thoroughfare. The protest came five days after security services sealed off the streets leading to Arak University, where student protestors had barricaded themselves. On May 1, numerous student and trade groups also protested around the country. The increasing frequency of public demonstrations is evidence of the growing discontent among Iranians over both a souring economy and President Muhammad Khatami's failure to fulfill his campaign promises.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East, Tehran, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: As President George W. Bush completes his latest European trip — one highlighted by a symbolic Memorial Day speech in Normandy that underscored the link between America's past wars and the current war on terror — his European Union (EU) hosts have begun to implement a policy on terrorism that is fundamentally at odds with the "Bush Doctrine": namely, that those who support, fund, or abet terror are terrorists themselves.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: America, Europe, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The 2001 edition of Patterns of Global Terrorism, the U.S. government's preeminent annual accounting of international terrorism, is slated for release tomorrow, a few weeks later than its usual April unveiling. The delay is presumably the result of the sharp rise in international terror activity in 2001. The report is said to be twice the usual length, including an overview of a U.S.-proposed global framework for countering terrorism. Key to judging the report, however, will be its treatment of terrorism writ large, including the controversial issues of Palestinian terrorism and state sponsors.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Ray Takeyh, Patrick Clawson
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Near the end of the Clinton administration, some analysts expressed a degree of hope that Iran's reform movement would inject some measure of pragmatism into Iranian foreign policy. That hope seems to have faded. The Bush administration has established terrorism and proliferation — two areas in which Iran has been particularly active — as top-priority issues, while the previous administration predicated its policy on certain developments within Iran. The parameters for evaluating Iranian foreign policy and U.S.-Iran relations have changed, particularly on the issue of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Charlotte Beers
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The United States is viewed with suspicion by much of the rest of the world, and its motives are consistently questioned for several reasons. This reality can be addressed through actionable goals. First, the United States is perceived as being too big, a hyper power whose global reach is threatening. Second, dialogue with the Middle East is almost nonexistent, and when it does occur, the fundamental concepts underpinning American democracy, such as the rule of law, are often misunderstood and need to be explained. Third, American studies programs, which could be used to bridge the understanding and dialogue gap, are now nonexistent at Middle Eastern universities. Finally, the United States has a very small share in the kind of debate that takes place in the new global village, where communication is nearly instantaneous and a rumor sent via email can reach half the world's population by the end of a business day. In particular, the inaccurate perception that, post-September 11, the United States is waging a war against Islam both at home and abroad has been widespread.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Reuven Paz
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Within the last month, the remaining members of al-Qaeda have begun to issue new electronic pamphlets through the websites of their supporters under the name of "Qaedat al-Jihad" (base of jihad). Usage of the internet by radical Islamists is not unprecedented, but after al-Qaeda's defeat in Afghanistan, it has become a vital modus operandi. This trend has also led to the establishment of dozens of websites by radical Saudi, Egyptian, and Palestinian scholars that grant Islamic legitimacy to al-Qaeda's cause.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Palestine, Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: Ray Takeyh
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On January 29, President George W. Bush caused considerable consternation among foreign policy analysts by referring to an "axis of evil" in his State of the Union address. The analysts worried that the president's castigation of Iran would embolden hardliners who routinely exploit external threats as a means of deflecting attention from their sagging political fortunes. The concern was that, in addition to hurting Iran's reform movement, the president's speech would lead to a more aggressive Iranian foreign policy, ending the modest gains toward U.S.-Iranian rapprochement that were achieved in the last years of the Clinton administration.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Thoraya Obaid
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: There is no doubt that demographics and population are linked to political stability. Although water and food resources are topics of great concern in the Middle East, there is another vital resource that deserves attention: young people. Today, growing unrest and perceptions of inequality and injustice pervade the region. Although suicide bombers currently claim the world's attention, another very serious phenomenon demands similar attention: the radicalization of Middle Eastern youths. When chronic poverty is combined with feelings of injustice or neglect and a lack of legitimate means to address problems, a path is paved for extremism.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Kemal Derviş
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Turkey's recovery from the economic crisis of February 2001 has so far been very successful. Fundamental reforms have been undertaken and strict fiscal discipline has been implemented. Furthermore, this process is, to a large degree, irreversible. For the recovery to be truly successful, however, it is essential that Turkey's relations with the European Union (EU) be promoted and that foreign direct investment be encouraged.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Simon Henderson, Patrick Clawson
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: After declining at least two earlier invitations since January 2001, Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is due to meet President George W. Bush for the first time this Thursday. The de facto leader of America's leading oil supplier (his elder half-brother, King Fahd, is ailing) had previously snubbed Washington's efforts, ostensibly angry over the president's reluctance to become involved in Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking. In addition to the current crisis, the lunchtime talks at President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, are expected to cover a complete range of issues including the involvement of Saudis in the events of September 11 and extension of the war against terrorism to Saddam Husayn.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Arabia, Saudi Arabia
  • Author: Dennis Ross
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Secretary of State Colin Powell and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon exchanged warm words regarding the U.S.-Israel relationship at a press conference on April 12, but underneath that they presented two distinct approaches to stopping the current violence in the region. Sharon emphasized that Israel is conducting a war on terror, stressing that completing the ongoing military operation is of the utmost importance. Powell was sympathetic to Israel's need to defend itself, but he emphasized finding a political answer to the conflict, one tied to a timetable for ending Israeli military operations.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Helena Kane Finn
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The day after a devastating suicide attack on the Israeli town of Netanya killed some twenty people celebrating the Passover Seder, Maria Rosa Menocal published an op-ed in the New York Times entitled "A Golden Age of Tolerance." In it, she reminded readers that "a thousand years ago on the Iberian Peninsula, an enlightened vision of Islam had created the most advanced culture in Europe. . . . [W]hat strikes us today about Al Andalus is that it was a chapter of European history during which Jews, Christians, and Muslims lived side by side, and despite intractable differences and enduring hostilities, nourished a culture of tolerance."
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: New York, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The best way to view the current situation is by recognizing that there are actually six wars going on simultaneously: 1) the Israeli-Palestinian war; 2) the war against terror; 3) the war against Saddam Husayn and the axis of evil; 4) the war within the Arab world between rulers and ruled; 5) the war among Israelis to determine Israel's future and a long-term strategy; and 6) the war for the heart and soul of the Bush administration's Middle East policy. These wars overlap, intersect, and converge, but they are not the same. One affects the other, usually in negative ways.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Washington, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Amatzia Baram
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Among the many advantages of an Iraq without Saddam Husayn, the first clear one is the removal of an unacceptable threat to the Iraqi people. Saddam has shown that he is prepared to put the nation and the region as a whole at risk. At the very least, an Iraq without his regime would be much more friendly to America, and — given Iraqi oil reserves — could even lessen American dependence on Saudi oil.
  • Topic: Security, Oil, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Ellen Laipson, Patrick Clawson
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In the year 1000, the Middle East had a population of approximately 30 million people, and it remained around that level until 1800. Between 1800 and 1900, however, the figure grew by 75 percent, and then by another 565 percent during the twentieth century, bringing the population to 386 million, or nearly thirteen times its historically stable level. But this increase is coming to an end. In the year 2050, the population will be less than twice what it was in the year 2000, and it will stop increasing entirely by the late twenty-first century, when it will reach its maximum of approximately twice the level it was in the year 2000. In other words, the population increase over one thousand years is essentially concentrated in a 150-year period between 1875 and 2025. This anomalous period of population growth has been a time of tremendous social, political, and economic turmoil.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Paul Wolfowitz
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: "It is the great good fortune of the United States to have in Turkey a friend and ally that has stood with us through war and peace, going back to the days of the Korean War. That is where American troops got their first look at Turkish courage — a fighting spirit and self-reliance that is also legendary in the annals of history. . . .
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Ray Takeyh
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: As the Bush administration seeks to define its policy on the Middle East, Libya has emerged in the high drama of the U.S. war against terrorism. A Scottish appeals court yesterday upheld the conviction of former Libyan intelligence agent Abdel Baset al-Megrahi for the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103. The appeals court ruled unanimously that none of the grounds of appeal are well founded. The latest verdict not only ended the Lockerbie legal saga but potentially ushered in a new phase in U.S.-Libyan relations.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, Middle East, Libya
  • Author: Simon Henderson
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Tomorrow's conference of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna comes at a time when higher oil prices have been reflected in increased gasoline prices over the last two months. Indeed, further price hikes are possible, particularly as talk of war with Iraq has strengthened the futures market in recent days. Presently, the cartel influences rather than controls the world price of oil and, unlike in 1973, sees its role as maintaining supply. Last May, in the National Energy Review (NER), the Bush administration appeared unwilling to criticize the production policies of OPEC, which is dominated by Middle Eastern states. How has this view been affected by the events of September 11? Furthermore, how might OPEC respond as the Bush administration pursues the war on terrorism and confronts the "axis of evil," which includes two OPEC members — Iran and Iraq?
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Six months after the September 2001 attacks, U.S. focus remains fixed on taking the war to the terrorists. There are a variety of roles along a spectrum of cooperation to be played by countries throughout the world, from military operations to freezing terrorists' assets and sharing intelligence.
  • Topic: Security, Intelligence, Religion, Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: While publicly stressing Saudi Arabia's cooperation and shared concern regarding terrorist financing, U.S. treasury secretary Paul O'Neill held private consultations this past week in Riyadh with Saudi officials and businessmen regarding specific Saudi organizations and individuals suspected of financing terrorist activities. Promising to find clear-cut cases, O'Neill reassured his hosts that the United States is both fine-tuning the procedure of targeting charitable institutions and fast-tracking the processing of individuals and institutions already placed on terrorism lists and subject to financial blocking orders.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia, Saudi Arabia
  • Author: Patrick Clawson, Dennis Ross
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Neither Prime Minister Ariel Sharon nor Chairman Yasir Arafat could have foreseen a year ago what is happening today — namely, an escalating spiral of terror and reprisal. Sharon believed that by insisting on "no negotiations under fire" and increasing pressure on the Palestinians, he could stabilize the situation. By sending his son to meet with Arafat, he also sought to convey that he would indeed negotiate once the violence stopped. Arafat believed that fissures would grow within Israeli society, or that a worsening of the situation would bring international intervention that either imposed a solution or enabled him to maneuver more freely. Neither leader got what he had hoped for.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Jean-Louis Sarbib
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Even prior to September 11, the World Bank emphasized the links between economic development, hopelessness, acts of desperation, and terrorism. To be sure, there is no one-to-one connection between poverty and terrorism, but surely poverty feeds hopelessness, which then creates an enabling environment for terrorism. Living in a society with such despair, terrorists can perceive and present themselves as champions of the poor. The acts that were perpetrated on September 11 proved that building a wall around the prosperity of a particular region of the world simply does not work. The world is truly globalized and unified; events and problems know no borders.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism, World Bank
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Amy W. Hawthorne
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On March 6, Lorne W. Craner, assistant secretary of state for democracy, human rights, and labor, will testify before Congress on the State Department's just-released "2001 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices" covering 195 countries. How the reports characterize human rights and influence U.S. policy in the Arab world is especially important this year. Traditionally, human rights have not figured prominently in U.S. policy toward the region. However, some U.S. officials have recently alluded to the promotion of "freedom" in the Middle East as part of the war against terrorism. Most notable were President George W. Bush's State of the Union remarks that "America will always stand firm for the nonnegotiable demands of human dignity: the rule of law, limits on the power of the state, respect for women, private property, free speech, equal justice, and religious tolerance."
  • Topic: Security, Human Rights, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet testified before the Senate Select Intelligence Committee on February 6 that Iran continues to be "the foremost state sponsor of terrorism." Citing its attempt to transfer offensive arms to the Palestinian Authority (PA) aboard the Karine-A smuggling ship, Tenet said that there has been "little sign of a reduction in Iran's support for terrorism in the past year."
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On February 17, Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia was quoted by New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman as saying that he had drafted a speech ready for delivery before next month's Arab summit, offering the "idea" of "full normalization of relations" with Israel in exchange for "full withdrawal from all the occupied territory, in accordance with U.N. resolutions, including in Jerusalem." As Friedman's column was headlined, this was an "intriguing signal" from the Saudi heir. Is it an important one, too?
  • Topic: Security, Religion, United Nations
  • Political Geography: New York, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Helena Kane Finn
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The U.S.-Turkish military strategic relationship has been a strong one historically, based on the loyalty of Turkey — a staunch NATO ally — over the past half century. As a result of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit's visit to Washington in January, business contacts between the United States and Turkey have intensified, adding a new and very significant dimension to the relationship. Perhaps the most concrete result of the meeting between President George W. Bush and the Turkish prime minister is the State Department's creation of the Economic Partnership Commission (EPC), scheduled to hold its first meeting in Ankara on February 26-27. State Department undersecretary for economic affairs Alan Larson will lead the U.S. delegation.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Raymond Tanter
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: President George W. Bush's reference to an "axis of evil" in his State of the Union address accurately captures the ties among Iran, Iraq, and North Korea. The president also usefully highlighted the overlap between proliferation and terrorism. In the end, there are more benefits than costs in using such confrontational language.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East, North Korea, Arabia
  • Author: Patrick Clawson
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On January 31, following President George Bush's State of the Union condemnation of the "axis of evil," National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice explained, "Iran's direct support of regional and global terrorism, and its aggressive efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction, belie any good intentions it displayed in the days after the world's worst terrorist attacks in history." How accurate is this characterization?
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Ray Takeyh
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In his January 29 State of the Union address, President George Bush criticized Iran as one of three states (the other two being Iraq and North Korea) forming an 'axis of evil' and castigated its "unelected leaders" for denying the will of the majority. Indeed, the perennial conflict between Tehran's political factions seems to have escalated, deepening the stalemate that has essentially paralyzed its governing system. The durability of the Islamic Republic has always stemmed from its flexibility and capacity to absorb change. Since the election of Muhammad Khatami in 1997, however, the popular demand for change is outstripping the system's accommodative capabilities. The youths' demands for employment and cultural freedom, the middle class's quest for representation, and the women's clamor for social emancipation are creating tensions and pressures that threaten the foundations of the Islamic Republic.
  • Topic: Security, Islam, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Iran, Middle East, North Korea, Arabia
  • Author: Reuven Paz
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On January 20-21, an interfaith summit of Muslim, Christian, and Israeli Jewish leaders convened in Alexandria, Egypt, after several years of effort and planning. The meeting did not draw much attention in the Egyptian or Palestinian media — only in the Israeli media — but it deserves attention, if not for the religious dimension, then at least for the political.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: Michael E. Mandelbaum, Robert Hunter, William Kristol
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In the wake of the Cold War, certain regions of the world (e.g., Western Europe, Northeast Asia, the Western hemisphere) are both important to the United States and, for the moment, relatively stable. Several other regions (e.g., sub-Saharan Africa, former Soviet Central Asia) are unstable but not as important. The Middle East is the only region that boasts the unhappy combination of being both important and unstable.
  • Topic: Security, Cold War, Religion
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Asia, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Helena Kane Finn
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The visit of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit to the United States last week was a political and public relations success for his administration, but a few questions remain: Can the Turks continue to implement the economic reforms required by the International Monetary Fund, or will there be slippage when the road gets rough? Can Turkey pull together to complete the legislation necessary to meet the European Union (EU) requirements? Balancing regional and international considerations, will Turkey be able to meet the challenge clearly posed by the deteriorating situation in Iraq? Will Turkey sustain the wise course it has taken in recent months on the Cyprus issue? And, perhaps most important for the long-term health of Turkish society, will it be able to seize the opportunity offered by the resolution of conflict in the Southeast and find ways to successfully integrate all of its citizens?
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: With its longstanding support for terrorism, both pre- and post-September 11, Syria poses a unique challenge to U.S. antiterror strategy. Unlike Iran — whose leaders orchestrate public chants of "Death to America, death to Israel" and thereby provide rhetorical context to their sponsorship of terrorism — Damascus proclaims its desire for warm ties with the United States and its commitment to a "comprehensive" peace with Israel. Specifically, Syria has benefited from its role in the Arab-Israeli peace process and its suzerainty over Lebanon. These factors have for years combined to provide Syria with a measure of protection against U.S. (and Israeli) antiterror initiatives.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: America, Middle East, Israel, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: As the Bush administration surveys options for the next phases in the war on terrorism, scant attention has been focused on Syria — despite the fact that Dr. Bashar al-Asad's regime has been among the world's most active supporters of terrorism, even after September 11.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Hans Blix
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Since September 11, there has been increased concern about terrorists using weapons of mass destruction (WMD). It is thus natural to return to the issue of Iraq, a country that has used chemical agents against Iran and its own citizens. Indeed, Iraq violated the Non-Proliferation Treaty before 1990 and, prior to the Gulf War, was estimated to be a year away from developing workable nuclear weapons.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Iran, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Revelations of Iranian-Palestinian collusion to smuggle fifty tons of weapons into the hands of Yasir Arafat's Palestinian Authority (PA) through the offices of Hizballah have profound strategic implications for the Middle East. For the Bush administration, responding appropriately to the Karine-A episode may have unpleasant repercussions for relations with key Arab states. However, failing to deal forthrightly with the shift in the region's tectonic plates represented by the smuggling affair is a self-defeating exercise in delusion.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Mark Parris
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Visits by Turkish prime ministers to Washington have tended in years past to be low-profile events. With imagination and boldness on the American side, the January 16 meeting between President George W. Bush and Turkish prime minister Bulent Ecevit has the potential to be a watershed in a relationship that will affect vital U.S. interests well into the new century.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: America, Washington, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Patrick Clawson, Amy W. Hawthorne
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In a brief January 3 statement, the White House announced that Egypt is receiving $959 million in accelerated economic aid, the bulk of which was evidently disbursed in the closing days of 2001. While an important sign of continued U.S. support for the Hosni Mubarak government, this sudden and massive windfall has the potential for weakening U.S. leverage in convincing Egypt to pursue additional (and much needed) economic reforms. Additionally, it is certain to be viewed in Cairo as a signal that the United States is fully satisfied with Egypt's post-September 11 contribution to the war against terrorism.
  • Topic: Security, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: Dennis Ross
  • Publication Date: 12-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On December 20, 2002, the Quartet convened at the White House to discuss the Middle East when President George W. Bush met with UN secretary-general Kofi Annan, Russian foreign minister Igor Ivanov, and three ministerial representatives of the European Union (Stig Moeller, Javier Solana, and Chris Patten). The purpose of this meeting was to secure the president's blessing for the Quartet's "roadmap" to Israeli-Palestinian peace, developed in order to fulfill the vision laid out in Bush's June 24, 2002, speech on the Middle East.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Yaakov Amidror
  • Publication Date: 12-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On November 26, 2002, Maj. Gen. (ret.) Yaakov Amidror addressed The Washington Institute's Special Policy Forum. General Amidror has served thirty-six years in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), as head of the National Defense College, head of the research and assessment division of military intelligence, and military secretary to the minister of defense. Currently, he is a visiting military scholar at the Institute. The following is a rapporteur's summary of his remarks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky, Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 12-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Last Friday, while official Washington was still enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday break, the White House stealthily issued Presidential Determination 2003-04, whose first paragraph instructs the State Department to sanction the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Palestinian Authority (PA) for noncompliance with obligations stemming from the Oslo Accords. This was ostensibly in response to evidence of official PA complicity in acts of violence and terrorism that had become too compelling to ignore. Yet, the very next paragraph orders that the specific sanction applied — downgrading the status of the PLO office in Washington — be waived, citing U.S. national security interests. The end result of this diplomatic two-step is a change in declarative U.S. policy (i.e., for the first time, a formal statement of PA noncompliance), but no change in effective policy.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On Thursday, an estimated 300,000 members of Israel's Likud Party will head to the polls and decide whether they want Prime Minister Ariel Sharon or Foreign Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as their party leader. This contest has special importance because current polls show that the Likud winner is likely to emerge victorious in the January 28, 2003, national elections as well. According to a November 22 Yediot Ahronot poll, Likud is outpacing Labor by a sizable 38- to 21-seat projected margin in the 120-seat Knesset.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Tomorrow, approximately 100,000 members of the Israeli Labor Party will vote for their new leader. The winner will serve as the party's standard-bearer for the national elections on January 28, 2003. Barring an unforeseen turnaround, the winner of tomorrow's contest will be Haifa mayor Amram Mitzna. Binyamin Ben-Eliezer — Mitzna's main rival and, until his recent resignation from the Sharon government, Israel's defense minister — is reduced to hoping that he can deprive Mitzna of the required 40 percent needed in a three-person race and force a December 3 runoff. Even under that scenario, however, Mitzna is expected to win. His popularity has grown over the past week as key supporters of the race's third candidate, veteran politico Haim Ramon, have defected to his side in the hopes of blocking Ben-Eliezer's reelection. Polls of Labor members currently show Mitzna ahead of Ben-Eliezer by a 43 percent to 26 percent margin, with Ramon trailing both at 12 percent.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky, Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Israel is reconfiguring its government and the Palestinian Authority (PA) has established a new cabinet this week. The Israeli-Palestinian violence of the last two years is unlikely to be transformed into a peace process as a result of this week's developments. This is due to a variety of factors ranging from the fact that PA chairman Yasir Arafat beat back efforts by reformers made over the summer and pointedly dropped his security chief who professed a commitment to reform. On the Israeli track, the new Israeli government's room to maneuver will be constrained by the lack of change on the Palestinian side, as well as a set of domestic and foreign considerations.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: During his visit to Washington last week, Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon was reportedly handed a forty-three-point document titled "Elements of a Performance-Based Road Map to a Permanent Two-State Solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict." This document, the product of intensive consultation between the four members of the Middle East peace process Quartet (the United States, Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations), offers the most ambitious and detailed plan yet to restart Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking after more than two years of terror and violence.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovksy
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Tomorrow, October 16, President George W. Bush hosts Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon. Although the two have met frequently in the year and a half since they assumed office, this session is likely to be different from previous encounters. Undoubtedly, they will discuss the situation with the Palestinians; this will be their first meeting since Bush's June 24, 2002, speech calling for a new Palestinian leadership capable of establishing a peaceful and democratic Palestine alongside Israel, perhaps as soon as 2005. The main focus of this White House discussion, however, will likely be the impact that a U.S. attack on Iraq would have on the U.S.-Israel relationship.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Shaul Mofaz
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In September 2002, Lt. Gen. (ret.) Shaul Mofaz, the most recent chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), addressed The Washington Institute's special policy forum. General Mofaz is a visiting military scholar at the Institute. The following is a rapporteur's summary of his remarks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Danny Ayalon
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On September 6, 2002, Danny Ayalon addressed The Washington Institute's Special Policy Forum. Mr. Ayalon is Israel's recently appointed ambassador to Washington, D.C. Before assuming this post, he served as foreign policy advisor to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and as deputy foreign policy advisor to Prime Ministers Ehud Barak and Benjamin Netanyahu. The following is a rapporteur's summary of his remarks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky, Khalil Shikaki
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On September 17, 2002, Khalil Shikaki and David Makovsky addressed The Washington Institute's Special Policy Forum. Mr. Shikaki is an associate professor of political science at Bir Zeit University, director of the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah, and a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution's Saban Center for Middle East Policy. Mr. Makovsky is a senior fellow at The Washington Institute, a contributing editor for U.S. News and World Report, and an adjunct lecturer at Johns Hopkins University's Nitze School of Advanced International Studies. The following is a rapporteur's summary of their remarks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: According to the September 17, 2002, issue of Ha'aretz, a delegation of American water experts toured the Wazzani River in southern Lebanon on September 16 to review Lebanese government projects aimed at directing water to nearby villages. Ever since the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) unilaterally withdrew from southern Lebanon in May 2000, relations between Israel and Lebanon have been tense, a result of the Lebanese government's tolerance of Hizballah attacks on Israeli targets along the border.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Prior to September 2000, the track record of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist attacks featured more failed and small-scale operations than successful or substantial ones; at the time, Hamas overshadowed PIJ in terms of terrorist activity. Yet, PIJ's profile has changed since then. In August 2001, Israel listed three PIJ members among its seven most-wanted terrorists, compared to one member each from Hamas, Force 17, the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). In October 2001, PIJ secretary general Ramadan Abdullah Shallah asserted, "With the grace of God and the blessing of the blood martyrs, the Islamic Jihad movement is in the best condition it has ever been in," highlighting "its jihadist effectiveness and qualitative operations." PIJ solidified its reputation in the annals of the current Palestinian intifada with the April 2002 standoff in Jenin. Thaabat Mardawi, a senior PIJ commander in Jenin arrested in the course of Israel's Operation Defensive Shield, proudly described the PIJ-led battle against the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to a CNN interviewer: "It was like hunting . . . like being given a prize. I couldn't believe it when I saw the soldiers. The Israelis knew that any soldier who went into the camp like that was going to get killed. I've been waiting for a moment like that for years." PIJ's moment has indeed come; by all accounts, the group will remain a dominant and destructive factor for the foreseeable future.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky
  • Publication Date: 08-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: This week, amid a deep economic recession, the national unity government of Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon narrowly adopted a 2003 austerity budget. Given the likelihood of new elections within a year, the time and attention of Israeli policymakers will likely be devoted to political maneuvering on serious domestic problems, in addition to the main issue: ongoing Palestinian-Israeli violence.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Arab Countries
  • Author: Ziad Abu Amr
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On June 27, 2002, Ziad Abu Amr addressed a special Washington Institute seminar on reforming the Palestinian Authority (PA). Mr. Abu Amr is chairman of the Political Committee of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC). The following are excerpts from his presentation, as transcribed by the Institute. Citing a recent speech given by Yasir Arafat to the PLC on the importance of reform, Abu Amr said, "For the first time, he acknowledged that there were mistakes, but he takes responsibility, something I personally did not like because this meant from the very start, suppressing the process of accountability and actual reform. The idea of the president was, 'Okay, there were mistakes. We close the files. We start afresh.' That was not acceptable."
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Hassan Abu-Libdeh
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On June 27, 2002, Hassan Abu Libdeh addressed a special Washington Institute seminar on reforming the Palestinian Authority (PA). Dr. Abu Libdeh is director of the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics and a professor at Bir Zeit University. The following are excerpts from his presentation, as transcribed by the Institute. "The PA was born out of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which was known for a long time as an aging, ineffective, corrupt, and poorly managed institution . . ."
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Khalil Shikaki
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On June 27, 2002, Khalil Shikaki addressed a special Washington Institute seminar on reforming the Palestinian Authority (PA). Dr. Shikaki is an associate professor of political science at Bir Zeit University and director of the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah. The following are excerpts from his presentation, as transcribed by the Institute. "Initially, Palestinian interest [in reform] was basically an effort to address the issue of waste. . . . One year into the establishment of the Palestinian Authority [PA], the Palestinian comptroller issued a report which shocked everybody because the report basically said we have been wasting something like $250 million. . . . Waste, corruption, violation of human rights in Palestinian jails, security forces essentially ignoring any law and order, were all factors that became of serious interest in the early two or three years of the Palestinian Authority. . . . The reason for all of this is the fact that the Palestinians so far have failed to build strong institutions, structurally speaking. . . ."
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matan Vilnai
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On July 17, 2002, Minister Matan Vilnai addressed The Washington Institute's Special Policy Forum. Mr. Vilnai is Israel's minister of science, culture, and sport; a member of Israel's inner security cabinet; a Labor member of Knesset; chairman of the ministerial committee for Israeli Arab affairs; and a reserve major-general (he served as head of Israel's Southern Command from 1989 to 1994 when Israeli forces redeployed out of Gaza). The following is a rapporteur's summary of his remarks. A few weeks ago, the Israeli government decided to establish a security fence between Israel and the West Bank in order to stem the tide of Palestinian suicide attacks. This fence has the support of the majority of Israelis for whom daily life has become a harrowing experience and for whom a fence brings some hope of security. This fence should not be seen as a substitute for diplomacy, but rather as a temporary security measure. The fence will not become the permanent border between Israel and the Palestinians. A permanent border can only attain legitimacy if it receives the support of both parties through negotiations.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: As President George W. Bush was offering his vision for a post-Yasir Arafat Palestinian state two weeks ago, the Palestinian leader's cabinet was itself unveiling a "100-day plan" for reforming the Palestinian Authority (PA). This plan was clearly designed to both respond to popular demands to fix the PA's broken or stillborn institutions as well as steer the reform process down a nonthreatening, Arafat-controlled course. While it offers promising elements of change, the plan is only likely to strengthen the unacceptable status quo.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Michael Oren
  • Publication Date: 07-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On May 29, 2002, Dr. Michael Oren, senior fellow at the Jerusalem-based Shalem Center and head of its Middle East history project, addressed The Washington Institute's Special Policy Forum. He is the author of the new book, Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East. The following is a rapporteur's summary of his remarks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: President George W. Bush today tore up a generation of conventional wisdom by offering a bold, new approach that conditioned U.S. support for eventual Palestinian statehood on a new political leadership; a "working democracy"; and far-reaching security, judicial, constitutional, and economic reform. At the same time, he seemed to ask nothing of Israel to which even the current Israeli government has not, in theory at least, already agreed. Having articulated this strategy, the White House will now surely face sustained pressure from Arab and European partners — and perhaps even from some within the administration — to balance the equation by early certification of Palestinian reform and/or accelerated demands on Israel for a redeployment of troops and a freeze on settlements.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Shaul Mofaz
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The IDF began planning for the contingency of carrying out extensive military operations throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip long before the deployment of Operation Defensive Shield in late March 2002. As early as 1998, during a period when hopes abounded for peace with both the Syrians and the Palestinians, the IDF's general staff faced the challenge of preparing for the failure of negotiations and the possibility of violence. Israeli intelligence reports anticipated the hostilities that eventually materialized in September 2000, following the unsuccessful talks at Camp David. A number of short-term and structural reforms within the IDF began in early 2000, aimed at improving readiness and maximizing efficiency. The optimistic tone of the times, however, had led to budget cuts for the military; eventually, the government was forced to allocate an additional $150 million in order to prepare soldiers for the anticipated violence.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries, Syria
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 06-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The fracas over Secretary of State Colin Powell's interview with the London Arabic daily al-Hayat yesterday — the contents of which White House spokesman Ari Fleisher has pointedly refused to endorse — reflects a growing pattern of White House-State Department division on key Middle East issues, a damaging dynamic that will only be exorcised through clarity and resolution from the Oval Office.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, London, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: With this week's dispatch to the Middle East of Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet and Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs William Burns, the Bush administration has put its toe into the water of Palestinian reform. Success in this vital effort will require avoiding the trap of sham reform (such as a disproportionate focus on elections that might only confirm the worst excesses of Palestinian misrule) or effectively endorsing any particular Palestinian leader or would-be leader (thereby repeating the mistakes of the last decade). Instead, Washington should focus on the larger objectives at hand. At the core, there are two: 1) fostering the development of Palestinian national institutions based on democracy, transparency, accountability, fiscal propriety, and the rule of law; and 2) advancing the prospect for lasting peace and security between Israel and the Palestinian Authority ([PA] and its eventual successor, the State of Palestine). These two objectives may be complementary, though not necessarily so; in fact, in certain circumstances, they may be contradictory. Indeed, in approaching the Palestinian reform process, U.S. officials should not only highlight the importance of structural change but also keep in mind the pitfalls of promoting (or acquiescing in) certain kinds of "reform" that may inhibit, handicap, or prevent real peacemaking from taking hold. A review of two key documents — #151; the Basic Law governing the PA until the conclusion of the current "transitional period" and the PLO-endorsed draft constitution for the future State of Palestine — #151; reveals several areas where U.S. officials need to take particular notice as they discuss various reform ideas with Palestinian leaders.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The State Department recently submitted its semiannual Palestine Liberation Organization Commitments Compliance Act (PLOCCA) report to Congress, assessing PLO and Palestinian Authority (PA) compliance with commitments made under the Israeli-Palestinian peace accords during the period June 15, 2001-December 15, 2001. The report acknowledges some PA shortcomings over the reporting period, but glosses over many gross violations of PA-PLO peace commitments throughout this period. In drawing its conclusions, the report did not take into account evidence of PA support for and involvement in terrorism laid out in approximately 500,000 documents Israel seized from PA offices in the course of Operation Defensive Shield. But there is good reason to expect that the U.S. government will find much of value in the seized Israeli documents. Ambassador Francis X. Taylor, the State Department's coordinator for counterterrorism, recently commented, "We don't have any question about the authenticity of the documents provided by the Israeli Government." Therefore, it is instructive to see where the documents shed light on issues discussed in the PLOCCA report. Once the material seized by Israel has been reviewed by the U.S. intelligence community — #151; a process that, presumably, will be completed shortly — #151; it would be appropriate to issue an updated version of the PLOCCA report, incorporating the additional information about PLO-PA activities during the June 15-December 15 period.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Speaking to the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) in Ramallah yesterday, Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat offered a new political agenda to guide the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the aftermath of Israel's Operation Defensive Shield and U.S.-led diplomatic efforts to win his release from Israeli encirclement. The main headings of that agenda are armed struggle, guided reform, and preparation for elections. No mention was made of the prospects for renewed negotiations or the proposed regional peace conference.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Last week, during the visit of Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon, President George W. Bush announced the need to "immediately begin to help rebuild a security force in Palestine that will fight terror, that will bring some stability to the region." He also stated that Central Intelligence Agency director George Tenet will be returning to the region "to help design the construction of a security force, a unified security force, that will be transparent, held accountable." Immediately after Bush's announcement, Sharon declared that he viewed security reform — #151; that is, purging the Palestinian Security Services (PSS) of corruption and terrorism — #151; as a precondition for a meaningful peace process, while, for his part, Bush did not create linkage between the two. Whatever differences exist in terms of linkage between reform and diplomacy, the administration's initiative is positive and necessary. The task at hand, however, is monumental, and solutions will take time, effort, and diplomatic skill. Quick fixes imposed from outside are unlikely to succeed unless they are accompanied by a fundamental change in the Palestinian leadership's approach to terrorism, counterterrorism, and peacemaking, and also by effective treatment of the deeply rooted social and institutional ailments within the Palestinian Authority (PA).
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Natan Sachs
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The Likud Central Committee meets on Sunday to discuss a resolution opposing Palestinian statehood. Such a resolution could be seen as an important declarative step, despite its lack of legal significance (Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has publicly endorsed the idea of Palestinian statehood — albeit in vague terms). Although a vote on the topic may not occur, the fact that such a resolution is even being tabled casts a spotlight both on the party that is consistently leading Israeli polls and on the efforts of former prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu to unseat his rival, Sharon. The next national elections are currently scheduled for November 2003, but, as is often the case in Israeli politics, they could very well be held sooner. Interestingly, the current frontrunner is neither Sharon nor a member of Labor, the main opposing party, but rather a member of the prime minister's own party, the Likud. Two significant developments in the political landscape have contributed to this trend: first, in March 2001 the Knesset repealed the system of direct prime-ministerial elections and reinstated most of the elements of the old system, hoping to aid the larger parties (Likud and Labor) at the expense of smaller ones; second, since the outbreak of the current wave of Palestinian violence in September 2000, the voting preferences of the Israeli electorate have shifted dramatically to the right.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Natan Sachs, Nitsan Alon
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On Tuesday, former president Bill Clinton joined others in advocating a U.S.-led international force in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Several frameworks for such an intervention have been proposed, ranging from monitoring missions to full-fledged international trusteeship over the territories. Underlying these ideas is a lack of confidence in both sides, the Israelis and the Palestinians, along with a perception that the latter are unable or unwilling to stop terror. Although the appeal of external intervention may be strong, an analysis of the relevant security repercussions suggests that such intervention would not only be hazardous, but would also likely do more harm than good in the fight against terrorism.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matthew Levitt, Ehud Waldoks
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The State Department's annual Patterns of Global Terrorism report, which is scheduled for release in late May, is set to be a much longer and detailed document than before. Among the many issues the report will have to address is the resurrection of secular Palestinian terrorist groups, some of which have not been listed on U.S. government terrorist lists in the past. The steady escalation of terrorist tactics and operations over the past year and a half is due as much to these groups as it is to Palestinian Islamist groups such as Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad that have dominated the Palestinian terrorism scene over the last decade. Palestinian nationalist terrorism currently has two components: 1) dormant secular groups such as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) — referred to collectively as "the fronts" — that have been revitalized after several years of inactivity; and 2) newly active nationalist, non-Islamist militias connected to the Palestinian Authority (PA), such as the Fatah Tanzim.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: A spate of visitors have been coming to the United States to talk with senior Bush administration officials about the Middle East. Perhaps the most prominent visitor has been Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Abdullah, the de facto Saudi ruler who last visited the United States three years ago. As a special gesture, President George W. Bush hosted Crown Prince Abdullah at his Crawford, Texas, ranch last week. Other recent visitors to see President Bush include Egypt's president Hosni Mubarak, Morocco's King Mohammed, and Lebanon's prime minister Rafik Hariri. Next week, President Bush will host Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon and, shortly thereafter, Jordan's King Abdullah. Today, the State Department will host senior diplomats who deal with the Middle East, hailing from the European Union, Russia, and the UN. These countries and organizations have been consulting with each other and with the United States more than in previous times. As President Bush meets with these leaders and considers his options, there is already a noticeable change in the Bush administration's Middle East public focus away from a virtually exclusive September 11 counterterrorism agenda. From President Bush's speech to Congress last September and the State of the Union speech in January, the animating principle of this administration has been the war on terrorism. The violence in the Israeli-Palestinian arena, though, coupled with the Saudi peace initiative spearheaded by Crown Prince Abdullah at the Arab summit in Beirut six weeks ago, has succeeded in shifting President Bush's agenda.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Middle East, Arab Countries, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon
  • Author: Matthew Levitt, Seth Wikas
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Operation Defensive Shield — the Israel Defense Forces' (IDF's) counterterrorism operation in the West Bank — aims to confiscate illegal weaponry and bombing materiel; destroy factories producing bombs and missiles; constrict the environment in which terrorists plan, prepare, and execute terror attacks; and, most important, apprehend the operatives behind the current terrorist offensive. The operation has come under increasing international fire for delivering only short-term benefits at what seems to be a disproportionately high human cost on both the Israeli and Palestinian sides. An analysis of the operation's success to date, however, clarifies not only the absolute necessity for such an operation, but also the scope of the operation's success in proactively disrupting terrorists' ability to target Israeli civilians. Moreover, a close look at the operation yields a plethora of disturbing evidence exposing the depth of the Palestinian Authority's (PA's) involvement in terrorism, including its links to terrorist groups such as Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Since March 28, 2002, the first day of Operation Defensive Shield — Israel's attempt to dismantle the Palestinian terrorist infrastructure — Lebanese Hizballah fighters have attacked northern Israeli settlements and military outposts on an almost daily basis. These unprovoked attacks have included the use of antitank missiles, mortars, katyusha rockets, and antiaircraft weapons directed at Israeli military and civilian aircraft. Among the towns attacked have been Shlomi, Kiryat Shmona, Moshav Beit Hillel, and the Allawite village Ghajar, where Hizballah fire wounded five residents, including three children. In an April 7 Hizballah attack on a military outpost in the western sector (a significant distance from the Shebaa Farms area), seven Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers — five of them women — were wounded. Despite these provocations, Israel has indicated that it does not wish to open a second front against Hizballah, the Lebanese army, or Syria. Yet, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon recently stated, "We are demonstrating restraint and are not interested in an escalation in the violence, but we cannot hold back for much longer," indicating that Israel's patience is about to run out and that harsh military response is imminent.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries, Syria
  • Author: Emphraim Sneh
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: One of the best ways to reconcile Israel and the Arab world and, simultaneously, meet the interests of the United States is to maintain a demarcation in the Middle East between rogue states — e.g., those in the "axis of evil" — and moderate states. These moderates states, which are also allies of the United States, include Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, and some Persian Gulf and North African countries. All of these countries must work together to ensure stability in the Middle East and contribute to the containment of rogue states. A coalition of moderate states is feasible — such cooperation became prominent after the Oslo Accords, and it reached a high point at the 1996 Sharmel-Sheikh summit of peacemakers, where Israel, Turkey, and the moderate Arab states joined to condemn terrorism. Although this alliance is currently fractured, the circumstances required for its resumption can occur again. However, it is unlikely that such a coalition can be re-formed as long as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains unresolved. Whenever the Palestinian issue is a bleeding wound, the Middle East divides in the old way, with Israel on one side and the Arab and Muslim states on the other. The Palestinian issue is the only issue on which all the Arab states, moderate and rogue, tend to unite. When the peace process was on a positive track, however, the moderate states succeeded in isolating rogue states like Iraq.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Israel, Arab Countries
  • Author: Nitsan Alon
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: What has Israel accomplished in its ongoing and large-scale operations in the West Bank? How well have the operations gone from the perspective of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF)? The balance sheet is more positive than some accounts have suggested.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Arab Countries
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In his Rose Garden speech yesterday, President George W. Bush jumped head-first into the waters of Middle East diplomacy by committing the prestige of his administration to the achievement of an Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire and, ultimately, to "ending the conflict and beginning an era of peace." Analytically, the most important innovation in the president's speech was his clear differentiation between the Palestinian people and the flawed, failed leadership of Yasir Arafat; absent was any hint of the recent days' mantra that Arafat remains indispensable to peacemaking. At the same time, however, the administration stopped short of breaking new ground operationally, relying instead on the prestige of the presidency, the persuasive powers of the secretary of state, and the implied threat to turn to other, as-yet-unnamed "responsible Palestinian leaders" to take the reins of power in the event this last-chance diplomacy fails to stem the terrorism and violence of recent days. Along the way, the president's decision to mesh political objectives with the goal of a ceasefire risked both an erosion of U.S. credibility in Mideast diplomacy and even more terrorism by giving Palestinians reason to believe that violence does succeed in chipping away at U.S. conditions for high-level political engagement.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Makovsky, Robert Satloff, Shibley Telhami
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The Saudi initiative for Israeli-Palestinian peace — soon to be presented at the upcoming Arab Summit in Beirut — is in part a tool to address tensions in Saudi relations with the United States after the September 11 attacks. A more important motivation for the initiative, however, is that the Saudi ruling family is concerned about the Saudi public's reaction to the escalation of violence in Israel and the Occupied Territories. In a recent poll, 63 percent of the Saudi public named the Palestinian situation as the single most important issue for them, and an additional 20 percent placed it among the top three most important issues. These statistics should not be taken too literally, but they are an indication of the growing influence that the Palestinian issue has on Saudi and other Arab perceptions of how the Arab world is treated by the West.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Responding to the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades' latest suicide bombing — which threatened to undermine the third straight peace mission of Middle East envoy Gen. Anthony Zinni — the State Department broke with tradition and announced the group's pending designation as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), even before Congress completed the process leading to its official listing in the Federal Register. More telling than this break in procedure, however, is al-Aqsa's intimate relationship with Yasir Arafat's own Fatah organization, the dominant faction within the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the Palestinian Authority (PA), and the various Palestinian security forces. Long hesitant to probe too closely into terrorism conducted by Fatah elements for fear of delegitimizing the PA as a peace partner, the State Department's addition of al-Aqsa to the FTO list underlines both the sharp rise in al-Aqsa terrorist tactics and Washington's post-September 11 zero tolerance for terrorism.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Arnon Soffer
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Beyond the current violence and terrorism lies a demographic reality in the Arab-Israeli dispute which might in the future transform the politics, economics, and geography of the region. The demographics may affect U.S. foreign policy vis-à-vis the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arab Countries
  • Author: Nitsan Alon
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Over the past month, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) conducted a large-scale operation in several cities and refugee camps in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, beginning on the night of February 27 and ending nearly three weeks later with the withdrawal of Israeli troops from Bethlehem and Bet-Jalla on March 18. This operation was unique in several ways: the scale of activity was the largest of the current conflict; it included simultaneous action in several areas in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, using ground, air, and naval forces; and it included massive penetration into areas under full Palestinian control (Area A) and, most notably, into refugee camps, long considered almost out-of-bounds for security forces (even those of the Palestinian Authority [PA]). A careful look at the operation and its outcome, however, shows that the rationale behind it does not represent a shift in Israeli military strategy, but merely a more robust implementation of it.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Gaza, Arab Countries
  • Author: Avi J. Jorisch
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On February 28, Hizballah fired 57mm-antiaircraft missiles at Israeli planes flying over the Shebaa Farms area. According to Hizballah information officer Hassan Azzedin, "the current line of Israeli withdrawal ('blue line') is not consistent with the international boundary and not recognized by the Lebanese government. That's why we're pursuing the path of resistance." Indeed, Hizballah claims that Israel continues to occupy sovereign Lebanese territory, and the organization makes this claim the basis for what it considers legitimate resistance. What, then, is Hizballah's vision of where the Lebanon-Israel border should lie?
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Arab Countries, Lebanon
  • Author: Matthew Levitt
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Lebanon may well have come to the West Bank and Gaza. Over the past year and a half, Hamas has adopted traditional Hizballah guerilla tactics such as roadside bombings, short-range rocket and mortar launchings, using squads of terrorists from a variety of groups, and videotaping attacks and potential suicide bombers. In the proud words of Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah, "[Palestinians] are now operating against the Israeli occupation with Hizballah methods." More ominous, there are increasing signs that Hamas may follow Hizballah's example and broaden its operational objectives to include targeting Americans for attacks.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Palestine, Arabia, Gaza, Lebanon
  • Author: David Makovksy
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Recriminations between Israelis and Palestinians on whether Israel sufficiently eased restrictions yesterday on the movement of Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasir Arafat within Ramallah (in return for the arrest of three Palestinians involved in the killing of an Israeli cabinet minister) have overshadowed Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's declaration on Thursday to establish buffer zones in the West Bank.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: In the past month there have been no less than six incidents in which Hizballah's antiaircraft batteries opened fire against Israeli civilian and military aircraft flying in Israel's northern airspace. This in addition to its repeated and unprovoked attacks on Israeli outposts in the Mount Dov region, next to the Shaba Farms — the 750 acres Lebanon claims as its territory without UN support. In the latest attack on January 24, Hizballah fighters fired rockets, mortars, and forty antitank missiles at an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) outpost.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, United Nations
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Arabia, Lebanon
  • Author: Binyamin Ben-Eliezer
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: "In the new world reality that emerged after September 11, it is easier for everyone to understand that there are no good terrorists and bad terrorists; it is not true that one man's terrorist — as some try to tell us — is another man's 'freedom fighter.' One man's terrorist is everyone's terrorist. . . . In this new world, it is very important that we show no tolerance for those who try to play a double game between us and the terrorists, for those who try to sit on the fence, one leg here, one leg there. In our region, some players still think, still feel, that they can continue the old game, playing both ends. The message must be clear: the old game is over. Make your choice, make it clear, and make it work. . . .
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Yezid Sayigh
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The parameters and structure of Palestinian society and polity have not yet been clearly defined or recognized. For Palestine, as for all societies that have been through liberation struggles, the extent of violence during the struggle will have a long-term impact on the future course of Palestinian politics, political values, identity issues, and institutional structures. The means through which the Palestinians obtain their independence will also have a major impact on the future of Palestinian-Israeli relations.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, Middle East, Israel, London, Palestine
  • Author: Robert Satloff
  • Publication Date: 02-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: On February 3, the New York Times published an op-ed by Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat titled "The Palestinian Vision of Peace." The timing of this op-ed is not coincidental. It appeared after several weeks of worsening U.S.-Palestinian ties, during which President George W. Bush registered his deep "disappointment" with the Palestinian leadership and U.S. officials contemplated cutting diplomatic ties with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Coming just days before visits to Washington by Israel's prime minister and defense minister, and just days after those Israeli leaders met with Palestinian interlocutors frequently cited as political successors to Arafat, this op-ed clearly sought to achieve several objectives: (1) to begin the process of repairing bilateral U.S.-Palestinian relations by spotlighting Arafat's peacemaking credentials; (2) to remind American audiences that Arafat — and not his subordinates and would-be successors — determines Palestinian strategy; and (3) to reorder the U.S.-Israel agenda this week to focus more on diplomacy and less on pressuring Arafat on terrorism and the investigation of the Karine-Aweapons-smuggling effort.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, New York, America, Middle East, Israel, Palestine
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: The Palestinian defense budget spending — relative to national income — is higher than that of any Arab country or Iran. This calculation is based on official data that exclude an important part of a state's defense budget — namely, procurement of weapons. The Oslo agreements prohibit the Palestinian Authority (PA) from procuring arms, yet they have been smuggled into the territories for years. It is not known how much the Palestinians actually invest in illegal weapons procurement, and there is no way to know how many wea
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Washington, Middle East, Palestine
  • Author: Gal Luft
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Growing U.S. military involvement in new locations such as Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, and the Philippines has raised concerns in the Pentagon about overstretching the military and has prompted a call to reassess the future of America's long-standing contribution to peacekeeping missions worldwide. One of the missions at risk of being curtailed is the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) — an independent, international peacekeeping and verification organization established by Egypt and Israel to monitor the security arrangements of their 1979 peace treaty. The idea of downsizing the 900-man U.S. contingent in the Sinai Peninsula has been raised several times by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. "I do not believe that we still need our forces in the Sinai," he said in a recent public statement. But the timing of such a change — especially in light of the deterioration in Egyptian-Israeli relations since the beginning of the al-Aqsa intifada — is questionable. At a time when other voices are calling for the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Saudi Arabia, a withdrawal from Sinai — even if only a reduction — could symbolize to many a decreasing U.S. interest in the region. It could also deny the recently violent Egyptian-Israeli-Palestinian border area an important and necessary cooling-off mechanism.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, America, Middle East, Israel, Uzbekistan, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Sinai Peninsula