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Possible Solutions for the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Framework of Negotiations for a Hegemonic Coalition

Research Paper (undergraduate) 2012 27 Pages

Politics - International Politics - Topic: Peace and Conflict Studies, Security

Excerpt

Index of Content

1. Introduction

2. Peace Process

3. Relationship of Israel and Palestine - Internal and External

4. Positions

5. Prisoner’s Dilemma

6. Resolving the Prisoner’s Dilemma
6.1 Tit-for tat
6.2 Hegemonic Coalition

7. The two-level game

8. Framework for a new peace negotiation

9. Conclusion

Appendix

Bibliography

Introduction

On November 13th 2011, Gaza militants launched a Qassam rocket at the Sha’ar HaNegev Regional Council. In response, Israeli Air Force attacked a naval police post in Gaza causing four Palestinian wounded and one dead.1 Situations like this are everyday occurrences between Israel and Palestine - a region of persistent belligerency interrupted by war and warlike events. This conflict sometimes also referred as to be one of the “world’s longest standing conflicts”2 has its origin in people’s beliefs about a land devoted by their religions. Both parties claim to have the right to live on the same piece of land. A land what is not just seen to be a geographic area. Rather people claim that this area is the fundament for their own state and with it an identity.3

Throughout history there have been many attempts to establish peace between Israel and Palestine but all of these attempts were to no avail.4 This term paper will examine the underlying problem why all these attempts could not lead to a mutually satisfactory solution and will then describe what needs to be done in order to establish a new and sustainable peace agreement between Israel and Palestine.

To do so this paper firstly illustrates the historical background of previous peace negotiations before describing the complex relationship of Israel and Palestine on an internal, regional and external level. It will then look at the opposed positions of both parties and illustrates to what extent the model of the Prisoner’s Dilemma can explain the situation that both sides are facing. Based on these findings ways how to potentially resolve this dilemma will be presented. The most promising solution of a Hegemonic Coalition that can put pressure on both parties to negotiate with each other over interests rather than positions will be explained in detail. Especially the framework under what conditions the negotiations should take place to avoid mistakes made by the Oslo peace negotiations will be addressed.5 Under consideration of that framework this paper develops a potential solution how the agreement between Israel and Palestine could look like to achieve peace between both parties.

Peace Process

The Israel-Palestine peace process can be seen as a series of attempts to establish a lasting end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Some of these attempts were more promising than others but until now none of them could establish peace between both parties.6 The decision tree in the appendix (Figure 1) helps to give a short overview of the main stages taken towards peace in the region. Throughout that paper some of these stages will need to be examined in further detail but for now this overview is sufficient to see that negotiations between both parties continuously failed mainly due to the unstable political environment within Israel and Palestine.

Relationship of Israel and Palestine - Internal and External

The political environment within both countries is very complex and characterized by numerous political parties with different attitudes towards the conflict.7

On the one side the Jewish and democratic state Israel is based on proportional representation system. Currently there are four parties out of fifteen within the 120-seat Knesset which have more than ten seats, namely the Kadima, Likud, Yisrael Beitenu and Shas.8 On 31 March 2009 Benjamin Netanyahu from the Likud party took over the role of the former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert from the Kadima.9 The liberal and left-wing political Kadima aims to create a strong Israeli and Palestinian state and the movement of Israeli settlement out of Gaza. The ruling center right wing Likud party however is interested on a “Greater Israel” which emphasizes Israel’s entitlement to the West Bank.10

On the other side Palestine is not a sovereign state and divided into the two areas Gaza Strip and Westbank. It is governed by a parliamentary democracy with Mahmoud Abbas as the president of Palestine.11 Similar to Israel there are a lot of political parties within Palestine.

The two major parties are the moderate oriented Fatah and the extremist oriented Hamas.12 A large fight in 2006 between both parties has shifted political control and made the environment even more unstable and unsecure. As a result of that Hamas was left in control of the Gaza Strip and Fatah in Control of the West Bank.13

However the conflict between Israel and Palestine has been more than just an internal fight between two parties who are looking for the same piece of land. The effects reverberated throughout the Middle East and the broader world.14 Figure 2 provides a general overview of the main players in the Middle East which are affected by the conflict and which have an impact on the conflict between Israel and Palestine.

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

< Figure 2> Main Players in the Middle East

Source: own illustration in dependence on: Council on Foreign Relations, Parties to the conflict, available in the internet: http://www.cfr.org/israel/crisis-guide-israeli-palestinian- conflict/p13850, (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

The arrows illustrate the relationship of Israel and Palestine to each of the other regions. Nevertheless the current changes in the Middle East also referred to as “Arab Spring”15 have topples leaders and thereby destabilized the relationships of Israel and Palestine to its neighbors even further.16 Especially the current revolts in Egypt leaded to the fall of Hosni Mubarak what gave vent to anti-Israel sentiment across the region.17 Therefore deference secretary of the United States of America [USA] Leon E. Panetta warned Israel that it would become increasingly isolated in the Middle East. He recommended Israel to restart negotiations with Palestinians and work to restore relations with Egypt.18 This statement suggests that also players from outside the Middle East are interested in a stable and peaceful environment in the Middle East. Table 3 illustrates the main actors.

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

<Figure 3> Main Actors - International View

Source: own illustration in dependence on: Council on Foreign Relations, Parties to the conflict, available in the internet: http://www.cfr.org/israel/crisis-guide-israeli-palestinian- conflict/p13850, (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

Especially the USA, Russia, the United Nations [UN] and the European Union [EU] also called the Madrid Quartet19 have been involved in the attempts to resolve the ongoing Israeli- Palestinian. China, USA, Great Britain, France and Russia are furthermore permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and have therefore the right to veto any substantial resolution of the UN.20 Especially in the current situation they are from substantial importance. On the 23rd September 2011 Mr. Abbas submitted an application to the Security General of the UN Ban Ki-moon requesting the UN to recognize Palestine as an independent state. What is needed for such recognition is a two-third majority from the UN General Assembly and the approval of nine out of the fifteen Security Council members, with no veto from any of the permanent members.21 Even though 139 out of 193 countries from the UN General Assembly have recognized the state of Palestine so far which represents already a two-third majority, the promised veto from the US which supports Israel will make any debate about the recognition of Palestine largely symbolic.22 According to Barack Obama a Palestinian state can only be achieved through talks with Israel.23 However figure 1 shows that the latest peace negotiations reached an impasse. This impasse is mainly due to the fact that the parties negotiate over positions rather than over interests.24

Positions

To argue over positions is a contest of will there each side tries to force the other party to change its position.25 No matter what way the parties will choose the overall result for both parties combined will lead to an outcome of zero and most likely always ends in a deadlock of the negotiations.26

Figure 4 illustrates such positions from the point of view of the extreme parties in the region to emphasize the fact that their positions are contrary to each other and therefore incompatible.

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 4: Positions of Israel and Palestine

Source: own illustration in dependence on: Diakonia, Daiakonia position paper on Israel/ Palestine, p 5 ff . available in the internet: http://www.diakonia.se/Documents/public/ IN_FOCUS/Israel_Palestine/Diakonia_Position_IPT_060517.pdf, (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

A negotiation over position won’t lead to a mutual satisfactory solution for the parties because either one side wins on the expense of the other side or status quo remains.27 This can be illustrated on the position of Israel and Palestine regarding Jerusalem. Both Israel and Palestine want the entire control over Jerusalem. Compromising for Israel on giving the control to Palestine is wholly unacceptable. Compromising for Palestine on giving the control to Israel is equally unacceptable. What is needed is that both parties look at their interests instead of their positions to find a solution what suits both parties.28 This idea will be developed further later in this paper. For now however the situation between Israel and Palestine will be analyzed with the help of a game theoretical model to see why Israel and Palestine do not cooperate even if it appears that cooperation is in their best interest.29

Prisoner’s Dilemma

In order to apply the model of the Prisoners dilemma to the situation in Israel and Palestine it is necessary to simplify the conflict. The first simplification being made is that the model just looks at the two actors namely Israel and Palestine.30 All other regional and international players which have an influence on the conflict are not being looked at. The second simplification is that Israel and Palestine have exactly two options.31 They can either continue using violence and thereby not following the peace process or they can stop violence and follow the peace process. The payoff matrix for the prisoner’s dilemma is illustrated in Figure 5 and shows these options by calling the former “use weapons” and the later “do not use weapons”.

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 5: Payoff Matrix for Prisoner’s Dilemma

Source: own illustration in dependence on: Choi / Howe, International Negotiations: Theory and Practice, 2007, p.33.

[...]


1 Cf. Ynetnews, IAF strikes Gaza target; 1 killed, available in the internet: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4147837,00.html, (visited 1st Dec. 2011).

2 Procon, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, available in the internet, http://israelipalestinian.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=000631, (visited 3rd Dec. 2011).

3 Cf. Zoffer/Bahurmoz/Hamid/Minutolo/Saaty, Synthesis of Complex Criteria Decision Making, available in the internet: http://www.springerlink.com/content/t101x8021g716640/fulltext.pdf, (visited 3rd Dec. 2011).

4 Cf. Bahouth, Konflikt um Wasser in Israel und Pal ä stina, 2010, p. 115.

5 Cf. Malvig/Stockmerr, The Israeli-Palestinian conflict - the need for an international solution, DIIS Policy Brief, Oct. 2011, available in the internet: http://www.diis.dk/graphics/Publications/Policybriefs%202011/ PB-Israeli-Palestinian%20conflict_web.pdf, (visited 8th Dec. 2011).

6 Cf. Newman, David (1996), Shared spaces — separate spaces: the Israel-Palestine peace process, GeoJournal Volume 39, Number 4, p. 363.

7 Cf. Jacob Jaffe, The Arab-Israeli Conflict as a Prisoners' Dilemma, available in the internet: http://www.jacobjaffe.com/1prison.htm (visited 4th Nov. 2011).

8 Cf.Central Elections Committee, Elections Results, available in the internet: http://www.knesset.gov.il/elections17/eng/Results/main_results_eng.asp (visited 3rd Nov. 2011).

9 Cf. Ibid.

10 Cf. Mid East Web, Palestinian Organizations and Parties, available in the internet: http://www.mideastweb.org/palestianparties.htm (visited 3rd Nov. 2011).

11 Cf. Newman, David (1996), Shared spaces — separate spaces: the Israel-Palestine peace process, GeoJournal Volume 39, Number 4, p. 363.

12 Cf. Central Elections Commission, Results and statistics, available in the internet: http://www.elections.ps:90/template.aspx?id=291, (visited 3rd Nov. 2011).

13 Cf. The Jerusalem Post, Hamas losing control over Strip, available in the internet: http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=170335, (visited 3rd Dec. 2011).

14 Cf. Council on Foreign Relations, Complete Transcript - Crisis Guide: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, available in the internet: http://www.cfr.org/publication/CGME_transcript.html, (visited 3rd Dec. 2011).

15 The Arab Spring is a revolutionary wave of protests and demonstrations occurring in the Arab world. They began on Saturday, 18 December 2010. Cf. Whikaker, The Arab spring is brighter than ever, available in the internet: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/mar/14/arab-spring-protest-crackdown-freedom, (visited 5th Dec. 2011)

16 Cf. Ntv, USA erteilen Israel Nachhilfe, available in the internet: http://www.n-tv.de/politik/USA-erteilen-Israel- Nachhilfe-article4920071.html, (visited 3rd Dec. 2011).

17 Cf. The New York Times, Middle East, available in the internet: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/03/world/middleeast/panetta-says-israel-must-mend-ties-with-arab- neighbors.html, (visited 4th Dec. 2011).

18 Cf. Ibit.

19 The Madrid Quartet also called Quartet on the Middle East was established in Madrid in 2002 as a result of the escalation of the situation in the Middle East. By launching a ‘road map for peace’ in 2002 they aim to resolve the conflict. The Quartet is still in process. Cf. European Union, The EU and the Middle East Peace Process, available in the internet: http://eeas.europa.eu/mepp/index_en.htm, (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

20 UN, Security Council: Voting information, available in the internet, http://www.un.org/depts/dhl/resguide/scvote.htm (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

21 Cf. BBC, News Middle East: Barack Obama `will veto` Palestinian UN bid, available in the internet: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-15014037 (visited 4th Dec. 2011).

22 Cf. The New York Times, Middle East, available in the internet: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/03/world/middleeast/panetta-says-israel-must-mend-ties-with-arab- neighbors.html, (visited 4th Dec. 2011).

23 Cf. BBC, News Middle East: Barack Obama `will veto` Palestinian UN bid, available in the internet: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-15014037 (visited 4th Dec. 2011).

24 Cf. Diakonia, Daiakonia position paper on Israel/ Palestine, p 5 ff . available in the internet: http://www.diakonia.se/Documents/public/IN_FOCUS/Israel_Palestine/Diakonia_Position_IPT_060517.pdf, (visited 5th Dec. 2011).

25 Cf. Fisher/Ury/Patton, Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, 1991, p. 6.

26 Cf. Ibid., p. 41; Dixit/Nalebuff, Thinking Strategically, 1991, p.85.

27 Cf. Dixit/Nalebuff, Thinking Strategically, 1991, p.14; Nicholson, Rationality and the Analysis of International Conflict, 1997, p. 60.

28 Cf. Getting to Yes : Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, 1991, p. 40.

29 Cf. Choi / Howe, International Negotiations: Theory and Practice, 2007, p.34.

30 Cf. Jacob Jaffe, The Arab-Israeli Conflict as a Prisoners' Dilemma, available in the internet: http://www.jacobjaffe.com/1prison.htm (visited 4th Nov. 2011).

31 Cf. Dixit/Nalebuff, Thinking Strategically, 1991, p.33; Jacob Jaffe, The Arab-Israeli Conflict as a Prisoners' Dilemma, available in the internet: http://www.jacobjaffe.com/1prison.htm (visited 4th Nov. 2011).

Details

Pages
27
Year
2012
ISBN (eBook)
9783656757412
ISBN (Book)
9783656757429
File size
1.5 MB
Language
English
Catalog Number
v281184
Institution / College
Ewha Womans University – Graduate School of International Studies
Grade
1,0
Tags
Israeli conflict Israeli-Palestinian conflict International Negotiations Prisoner's Dilemma Payoff Matrix Tit-for tat hegemonic coalition Two-level game

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Title: Possible Solutions for the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Framework of Negotiations for a Hegemonic Coalition