TransConflict – January 2018 Review

TransConflict is pleased to present a selection of articles published during December, plus updates from the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation, available by visiting:
Highlights from the month include:

  1. Towards a grand plan for the Middle East? – Matthew Parish – It is the diversification of contemporary global energy markets that provides the international community with the opportunity to treat the Middle East once more as another typical region of the world, with sometimes vexing but not intractable disputes between neighbours.
  2. Ghosts of protests past – David B. Kanin – So far, the current set of weekly street performances in Serbia appear to have as much in common with demonstrations in March 1991 as with the events of December 1996 or October 2000.
  3. Strategies for reforming the United Nations – Matthew Parish – If reform is not attempted and achieved, then increasingly the Great Powers of today are just going to ignore the United Nations and its bureaucracy, which may entail a return to the dangers of the Great Powers model of diplomacy of the nineteenth century: only vastly more dangerous (and costly), because the arms races have developed so substantially since then.
  4. Corruption in the Balkans is impeding EU membership – Alon Ben-Meir and Arbana Xharra – Addressing the problem of corruption in the Balkans is central to the EU’s geostrategic interests as well as the Balkans’ future wellbeing within the EU community. The Balkans’ accession to the EU must be seen as a marriage of necessity that will dramatically enhance their collective security while substantially improving the quality of life and respect for human rights throughout the Balkans.
  5. The Kosovo dialogue – must the show go on? – Miloš Petrović – It is clear that “rallying ‘round the flag” is not a phenomena which is limited to the Kosovo territory, but something which represents a mainstream tool in “façade democracies” of southeastern Europe. In such a context, maybe it is better for Belgrade to wait out this political storm and abstain from reaction, rather than having to heal it afterwards.
  6. Time to dump Netanyahu – Dr. Alon Ben-Meir – The upcoming parliamentary election offers Israelis a historic opportunity to rid themselves of the revisionist, nationalist, and blindly zealous leaders like Netanyahu who have steered Israel astray and subjected it to the ominous danger of losing its democratic principles and its Jewish national identity.
  7. Macedonia name issue – agreement and disagreement – Nikos Skoutaris – Maximalist positions for the renaming of the neighbouring state without the use of the term ‘Macedonia’ has always been the equivalent of a unicorn eating pie in the sky. In fact, by accepting fYrOM as a provisional reference Greece has tacitly admitted that there was a federated entity in Yugoslavia called Macedonia. And it is rather unsurprising that the citizens of that entity would expect their country to keep the name it has been using for more than 50 years when it became independent.
  8. Sri Lanka – he never came home – Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice – Prageeth Eknaligoda was an outspoken critic of the government of Sri Lanka. He worked tirelessly to expose the gross human rights violations committed against Tamil civilians during the civil war. It was his investigations into the government’s alleged use of chemical weapons against its own people that many have suggested was the reason for Prageeth’s abduction on 24th January 2010, as he travelled on the evening commute.
  9. The betrayal of Israel’s historic promise – Dr. Alon Ben-Meir – The new generation of Israeli leaders have a solemn duty to seek the unification of world Jewry, end the conflict with Palestinians, and champion the causes of human rights and liberty. Unless Israel pursues these and other humanitarian causes, it will lose its very soul and forfeit its reason for being—a price that the Israelis cannot afford to pay.
To read all TransConflict’s analysis from throughout the month, please click here. We kindly ask you to share the review widely and to encourage others to sign-up for regular updates from TransConflict and the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation. We also welcome your ideas and suggestions for articles on conflict and conflict transformation. 

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