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Peacebuilding and Reconciliation

Peacebuilding and Reconciliation: Contemporary Themes and Challenges

Marwan Darweish
Carol Rank
Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: Pluto Press
Pages: 240
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt183pbzt
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  • Book Info
    Peacebuilding and Reconciliation
    Book Description:

    Peacebuilding and Reconciliation brings together a number of critical essays from members of the renowned Centre for Peace & Reconciliation Studies, based at Coventry University in the UK. This highly topical book covers the latest developments and issues in the discipline of peacebuilding and reconciliation, using different global case studies of societies experiencing or emerging out of violent conflict. It brings together a range of scholars, including many from the global south, who provide fresh perspectives and insights based on their experience of living and working in conflict situations. The book connects theory and practice, drawing both on academic research and direct experience of conflict situations, and explores how to meet the challenges involved in peacebuilding and reconciliation. Peacebuilding and Reconciliation is a cutting-edge collection ideal for students and academics in peace studies, development studies and international relations.

    eISBN: 978-1-84964-758-8
    Subjects: Political Science
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Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents (pp. v-vi)
  3. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS (pp. vii-viii)
    Marwan Darweish and Carol Rank
  4. INTRODUCTION (pp. 1-12)
    Marwan Darweish and Carol Rank

    Processes of peacebuilding are complex and interconnected. The chapters in this book highlight particular facets central to peacebuilding and reconciliation in societies experiencing or emerging out of violent conflict. Some of the themes and challenges presented are:

    ‘top down’ versus ‘bottom up’ approaches and the need for local ownership of peacebuilding processes

    attempts at building national unity through truth and reconciliation commissions

    promoting reconciliation through grassroots traditional processes

    the challenges of dealing with secessionist movements and terrorist groups

    the issue of refugees’ right of return and reintegration

    the reintegration of former combatants, particularly child soldiers

    the role of interreligious dialogue...

  5. Part I Peace:: but what kind of peace?
    • 1 HOW HAS THE LIBERAL PEACE SERVED AFGHANISTAN? (pp. 15-31)
      Chrissie Hirst

      The end of the Cold War brought crucial changes to the global context of conflicts in the developing world. With the lens of superpower rivalry removed, the role of international organizations to intervene was strengthened, in particular the role of the United Nations (UN). The 1992 UN Secretary-General’sAn Agenda for Peace, and the 1995 Supplement to An Agenda for Peace(Boutros-Ghali, 1992 and 1995) outlined an array of steps or measures (for example, disar mament, demobilization, security sector reform, election monitoring and regulatory reform) which have become standardized elements of post-conflict peacebuilding intervention, also described as ‘state building’ or...

    • 2 THE OBSTACLES TO SUSTAINABLE PEACE AND DEMOCRACY IN POST-INDEPENDENCE KOSOVO (pp. 32-43)
      Gëzim Visoka

      Even after ten years of international administration and four years since its declaration of independence from Serbia, Kosovo continues to face ethnic and socio-economic problems, as well as fundamental challenges to its governance and sovereignty that have the potential to undermine the progress achieved and threaten Kosovo’s stability. Kosovo already illustrates some of the signs of a weak state: it does not exercise sovereign control over its northern territory; it has a weak economy and high unemployment. There are high levels of corruption and institutional weaknesses in the justice and law sectors, and Kosovo is making only slow progress towards...

    • 3 ETHNICITY, ETHNIC CONFLICTS AND SECESSIONISM IN ETHIOPIAN POLITICS (pp. 44-58)
      Bezawit Beyene

      Ethnicity is one aspect of identity around which people organize themselves; it is often the core element by which people mobilize and seek political power. Harff and Gurr define ethnic groups as ‘psychological communities’ whose members share a persisting sense of common interest and identity based on some combination of shared historical experience and valued cultural traits; beliefs, language, ways of life, or a common homeland (2004: 3). Moreover, ‘ethnicity is not a thing or a collective asset of a particular group; it is a social relation in which social actors perceive themselves and are perceived by others as being...

  6. Part II Reconciliation and dealing with the past
    • 4 STATE FAILURE AND CIVIL SOCIETY POTENTIAL: RECONCILIATION IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO (pp. 61-71)
      Verity Mould

      Between 1998 and 2007, the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) resulted in the deaths of 5.4 million people; a death toll greater than any other conflict since the Second World War (International Rescue Committee, 2006). These figures highlight just one aspect of the severe devastation caused by a prolonged conflict that has ravaged the country’s economic and social resources, left millions dead and many more displaced, homeless, malnourished and suffering from disease.

      The DRC’s long history of violence, since Belgian rule until the present day, caused Frantz Fanon to remark that ‘Africa has the shape of a...

    • 5 REMEMBERING THE PAST AND RECONCILING FOR THE FUTURE: THE ROLE OF INDIGENOUS COMMEMORATIVE PRACTICES IN SIERRA LEONE (pp. 72-86)
      Steven Kaindaneh

      Scholars have taken a keen interest in the study of war commemoration and its significance in helping survivors of a conflict come to terms with their experiences (Ashplant, Dawson and Roper 2000: 5). However, while much attention has been given to formal and state-sanctioned initiatives, very little scholarly work has examined how ordinary people, especially those in rural African communities, commemorate traumatic events.

      The civil war in Sierra Leone (1991–2002) was so traumatic that it can hardly be forgotten by the nation, especially by people who had first-hand experience of it. Consequently, various agencies, ranging from state to rural...

    • 6 DECOLONIZATION AND RECONCILIATION: THE COLONIAL DILEMMA OF CANADA’S RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL APOLOGY AND RESTITUTION (pp. 87-102)
      Patricia Elgersma

      In recent decades the Canadian public has heard a number of apologies from various governments and institutions. The apology to Japanese Canadians (1988) and Italian Canadians (1990) for treatment during the Second World War, the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (RCAP) Statement of Reconciliation (1998) to former residential school occupants, and the apology for the ‘Chinese Head Tax’ (2006), are just a few examples.

      In 2008 the current prime minister, Stephen Harper, added to the trend with his public acknowledgement and apology concerning the Indian residential school system (IRS), a government-led policy between 1874 and 1996, which in conjunction with...

  7. Part III Cultural processes and initiatives
    • 7 IS ‘INTERRELIGIOUS’ SYNONYMOUS WITH ‘INTERFAITH’? THE ROLES OF DIALOGUE IN PEACEBUILDING (pp. 105-118)
      Sarah E. Bernstein

      It is perhaps a truism to say that religion has played a central role in the causation of conflict and maybe less often, a role in peacebuilding. Archbishop Desmond Tutu once stated on a visit to England, ‘Religion is like a knife, morally neutral. It is what you do with it’ (BBC, 2004). A case in point might be South Africa, where the Dutch Reformed Church was in many ways not just a supporter of apartheid, but indeed led the impetus to create an apartheid state, based on theological underpinnings (Johnston, 1994: 187). On the other hand, many of the...

    • 8 THE ROLE OF HEALTH IN BUILDING PEACE: THE CASE OF AFGHANISTAN (pp. 119-134)
      Wossenyelesh Kifle

      In the war zones of contemporary intrastate conflicts, the health of the population is severely affected by accompanying humani tarian crises and complex problems that often result in excessive morbidity and mortality amongst civilians. The primary causes of these are direct killing, injuries and the disruption of economic and social systems that lead to food shortage, infectious disease, damage to health facilities and to the forced mass displacement of the population.

      Health is not only adversely affected by conflict; it is also inextricably linked to peace, human security and development. Good health enables people to exercise their choice, pursue social...

  8. Part IV Challenges to peacebuilding and reconciliation
    • 9 THE NEW ECONOMY OF TERROR: MOTIVATIONS AND DRIVING FORCES BEHIND CONTEMPORARY ISLAMIST INSURGENCIES (pp. 137-150)
      Peter Keay

      InModern Jihad, Loretta Napoleoni approaches armed insurgency and terrorism from a novel and different perspective, asserting that there is a ‘new economy of terror’; namely that it is not possible to view modern Islamist (or other armed) movements without acknowledging their dependence on specific financial factors that may be the real drivers behind the groups. She pointedly ignores the more conventional approaches of focusing on religious and cultural differences, and claims that Islamist groups are driven more by real economic forces in the Muslim world. She claims:

      Money is terrorism’s lifeline. Economics, not politics or ideology, is the armed...

    • 10 THE QUESTION OF HOME: REFUGEES AND PEACE IN THE ISRAEL–PALESTINE CONFLICT (pp. 151-165)
      Abigail Bainbridge

      In 2001, Edward Said stated:

      The issue, in the by now notorious peace process, finally has come down to one issue, which has been at the heart of Palestinians depredations since 1948: the fate of the refugees who were displaced in 1948, again in 1967 and again in 1982.

      (Said, 2001: 1)

      This chapter will explore how the status of Palestinian refugees in the Middle East, specifically those in Lebanon, Jordan and Syria, must be addressed to ensure the sustainability of the Palestinian–Israeli peace process.

      After a brief introduction to the Palestinian refugee issue, I will examine the Palestinian...

    • 11 HAMAS: BETWEEN MILITARISM AND GOVERNANCE (pp. 166-182)
      Ibrahim Natil

      Hamas’s success in the Palestinian national elections of 2006 marked a significant milestone in the movement’s strategic transition from militarism and resistance to political governance, which reflected a significant shift in the focus and activities of the movement.

      The purpose of this chapter is to show how this dramatic trans formation was possible, and to explore the roots and rationale of the transformation, examining its effects on the Palestinian political scene, and the resulting fragmentation of Palestinian society into two political and ideological – as well as geographic – entities in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

      In order to predict...

    • 12 RETURNING HOME TOWARDS A NEW FUTURE: NEPAL’S REINTEGRATION PROGRAMME FOR FORMER CHILD SOLDIERS (pp. 183-200)
      Dilli Binadi

      From 1996–2006, Nepal experienced a decade of armed conflict between the government and the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoists (hereafter the Maoists). During the conflict, children were deployed in various military activities, including as combatants, by the conflicting parties. Along with others, children were deeply affected by the conflict and their rights were comprehensively violated. Even after the peace deal, the effective release, return and reintegration of former child soldiers, often referred to as ‘children associated with armed forces and armed groups’ or CAAFAG, did not happen according to the provision outlined in the 2006 Comprehensive Peace Agreement and the...

  9. REFERENCES (pp. 201-220)
  10. INDEX (pp. 221-232)