Archive for category: Middle East

Iraq, Syria and the MidEast – what is to be done?

Iraq, Syria and the MidEast – what is to be done?

The essential fact of the sectarian conflicts (internal and external) that have characterized the MidEast for decades has been the artificial boundaries left behind by empire and the colonial powers. The basic question facing any political approach to restoring peace would be whether to seek to preserve those boundaries or […]

Israel and Palestine – challenging conventional peace and conflict paradigms

Israel and Palestine – challenging conventional peace and conflict paradigms

Space for dialogue still remains in this conflict, but conventional peace wisdom needs to be revisited and challenged to adjust to the ever-changing realities in both Israel and Palestine.

Syria – missed opportunities and future perils

Syria – missed opportunities and future perils

One cannot deny that action in Syria is long-overdue. The question that remains –  which is currently being debated by Western power-brokers – is what form such action should take.

Palestinian flags in Derry and Sarajevo – solidarity through representation

Palestinian flags in Derry and Sarajevo – solidarity through representation

Victimhood is a powerful motivator of acts of solidarity. It is, therefore, more important than ever to understand and explain the role of symbols and slogans as political motivators in divided societies. Conflict transformation practitioners should not be scared of symbols, but rather of their interpretations. 

Islamic State in Iraq-Syria – the standards of world law

Islamic State in Iraq-Syria – the standards of world law

The UN Human Rights Council Special Session on Iraq was a major advance for world law as for the first time, a non-state actor is held responsible for upholding universally-recognized human rights standards.

UMAM Documentation and Research from Lebanon

UMAM Documentation and Research from Lebanon

TransConflict is pleased to present the profile of UMAM Documentation and Research from Lebanon, a member of the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation.

When fighting terror produces ever more radicals and sectarianism

When fighting terror produces ever more radicals and sectarianism

At a time when Hezbollah’s involvement in Syria is on the cusp of being accepted as just another effort in the general “war on terror,” it is advisable to question the likelihood that a (Shia) “partisan” war on (Sunni) terror could well become a breeding ground for more “radicals” on […]

India and the conflict in Gaza – moralistic concerns or national interest?

India and the conflict in Gaza – moralistic concerns or national interest?

A polarized public perception has emerged in India; one that views the the Gaza crisis through the prism of either humanity and morality, or from the perspective of challenges faced by the Indian state in terms of Kashmir and Pakistan.

A tale of two genocides

A tale of two genocides

While approaches to “genocide” differ and the claimants voices are many, the historic legacy of genocide must be a starting point. One could conclude that both Palestinians and Yazidis are experiencing such a destructive process, albeit over different time scales and receiving opposing ideas of “support” and condemnation from Western […]

Kosovo, Ukraine, Syria and Iraq

Kosovo, Ukraine, Syria and Iraq

The struggles by ethnic and religious groups left behind by empire cannot be resolved by outsiders. These competing groups need to find their own way – even fight their own way – to arrive at boundaries and arrangements they can live with. Any foreign intervention risks alienating one side or […]

Time to do a deal with Assad?

Time to do a deal with Assad?

The military options for the West vis-a-vis Iraq and the IS are limited without some ability to operate permissively in Syria. This would require movement toward a political settlement to the Syrian civil war and an arrangement with Assad. We would need to work with those we find in power […]

Voices of reconciliation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Voices of reconciliation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

As the violence continues, there are grassroots organisations in Israel and Palestine are working to build peace. One such example is Parents Circle-Families Forum. The organisation has bought together more than 600 Palestinian and Israeli families, all of whom have lost an immediate family member to the conflict, to call […]

Could the use of rockets be banned in the Middle East?

Could the use of rockets be banned in the Middle East?

Efforts to eliminate stocks of rockets and missiles seem unlikely to succeed in the current context. However, a ban on use might be a real possibility and merits speedy consultations.

The Interfaith Encounter Association from Israel

The Interfaith Encounter Association from Israel

TransConflict is pleased to present the profile of the Interfaith Encounter Association from Israel, a member of the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation.

A political framework for a new approach to Israeli-Palestinian coexistence

A political framework for a new approach to Israeli-Palestinian coexistence

A political framework for a new approach to Israeli-Palestinian coexistence provides for a joint country called Israel-Palestine having equal rights for all, separate geographical areas for the two peoples, the ability by individuals to live anywhere in the entire country (within practical limits) either as a citizen or as a […]

Wi’am from Palestine

Wi’am from Palestine

TransConflict is pleased to present the profile of Wi’am from Palestine, a member of the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation.

Israel’s Gaza offensive

Israel’s Gaza offensive

The contention that Israel is on its path of conflict against Gaza in its pursuit of self-defence is not acceptable. If armed force is to be justified as self-defence under the UN Charter, it is absolutely necessary that a precursor armed attack occurred. This is simply not the case with respect […]

Syria and the ICC

Syria and the ICC

There are arguments that to prosecute is to interfere with the right of self-determination of the Syrian people. However, when there is evidence of mass atrocities, with clear ideas as to who is responsible, the prosecution cannot be considered to be “taking sides”. 

Can I reconcile with the man who killed my son?

Can I reconcile with the man who killed my son?

Robi, an Israeli mother, ponders the possibility of meeting her son David’s killer, and can’t help wonder how honest she is with herself in her quest for reconciliation. Can a person who stole the life of a women’s child ever truly be forgiven? Is the dialogue between perpetrators and victims […]

Israel’s future as an anachronism

Israel’s future as an anachronism

Israel is a nineteenth century European project completed neither in the nineteenth century nor in Europe.

Negotiating the Syrian crisis – a compromise remains far off

Negotiating the Syrian crisis – a compromise remains far off

The trajectory of the Geneva II negotiations – either towards convergence (resolution) or divergence (non-resolution) – will affect the outcome of one of the most violent and protracted conflicts in the Middle East.

For Syrian refugees child marriage is a necessity

For Syrian refugees child marriage is a necessity

Research by women’s right organizations purports that the prevalence of child marriage is not due to lack of awareness about the concerns of the practice, but due to the social prejudice that girls face. While reports are inconclusive as to the rate of increase of child marriages among refugee populations, […]

Al-Qaeda in Radaa, Yemen – global security challenge or local succession dispute?

Al-Qaeda in Radaa, Yemen – global security challenge or local succession dispute?

In January 2012 Al-Qaeda seized control of Radaa, Yemen. Internationally the event was viewed as a territorial advance by Al-Qaeda, however the situation was much more complicated. Viewing the conflict from a different perspective has important consequences for what policy and action are appropriate.

Can Israel annex the Jordan valley?

Can Israel annex the Jordan valley?

The recent decision by Israel’s Ministerial Committee approving the annexation of the Jordan Valley goes against one of the very core tenets of public international law.

Local pressure for peace mounts in Syria’s civil war

Local pressure for peace mounts in Syria’s civil war

In the chaos of Syria’s civil war local peacebuilders are finding ways to bring respite for tired civilians from suffering and danger.