Now more than ever Americans need to understand how the Camp David Accords affected the entire Middle East region—not just Egypt and Israel—to deal with the complexities of future peace efforts. The authors provide an analytical basis for understanding the intricate links among domestic political forces, regional politics, and superpower policies as elements in the Arab-Israel peace process. By examining the past, the authors also show how to clarify choices that may confront Israelis and Arabs as they continue to work toward a settlement of their longstanding dispute.
The peacekeeping system has largely outlived its usefulness and is bound to fail when applied to currently predominant violent and messy conflagrations. Lacking radical changes in that system, the UN should disarm, restricting the peacekeeping to military observers' missions and to subcontracting other operations out to military alliances and regional organizations. The widely lamented massacres of innocent civilians under UN Peacekeeper eyes in Rwanda, Srebrenica, and the Congo influenced neither the UN's approach nor the analysis of the methods. In this book, Andrzej Sitkowski confronts two basic peacekeeping myths. First, the belief that peacekeeping is distinct from peace enforcement blurs this distinction and undermines the viability of peacekeeping operations. In fact, it is the UN's definition of self-defense, which is understood to include actions of troops against forceful obstructions to discharging their mandates, that confuses the issue. Nevertheless, that distinction remains a cornerstone of the UN doctrine. Secondly, it is widely believed that the peacekeepers are allowed to apply force only in self-defense and lack the authorization to use it in defending UN Security Councils mandates. This myth persists, even in cases when the UN Security Council undertakes explicit authorization to enforce specific goals of the mandate.
Sitkowski offers a critical re-appraisal of the fundamental principles of peacekeeping, including both the largest successes (Namibia) and worst disasters (Rwanda). Drawing heavily on personal accounts, the book is solidly anchored in official primary sources originating from the UN, national governments, parliamentary inquiries (Dutch, French and Belgian) and from the International Criminal Tribunal on Rwanda. It integrates the most recent recommendations related to peacekeeping originating from High-Level Panels and endorsed by Kofi Annan. Finally it exposes how the UN peacekeeping syndrome of soldiers safety first crept into the NATO's strategy and compromises its missions in Kosovo and Afghanistan.