ISSN 1522-211X O J P C R

The Online Journal of Peace and Conflict Resolution








OJPCR: The Online Journal of Peace and Conflict Resolution is a resource for students, teachers and practitioners in fields relating to the reduction and elimination of destructive conflict. It is a free, yet valuable, source of information to aid anyone trying to work toward a less violent and more cooperative world.

Issue 5.1


From Peacekeeping to Peacebuilding

From Violence to Peace: Terrorism and Human Rights in Sri Lanka

Personal Empowerment as the Missing Ingredient for a Resolution of the Israel/Palestine Conflict

Creating a More Peaceful Classroom Community by Assessing Student Participation and Process


To Protect Democracy (Not Practice It): Explanations of Dyadic Democratic Intervention (DDI)

Why did the Colombia Peace Process Fail?

Truth and Reconciliation: The Road Not Taken in Namibia

Africa Crisis Response Initiative: Its Workability as a Framework for Conflict Prevention and Resolution

Culture, Gender, Power and Conflict in Melanie Thernstrom's Halfway Heaven: Diary of a Harvard Murder

Kant's Perpetual Peace: A New Look at this Centuries-Old Quest

An Analysis of Bloody Sunday

The Jewish Group: Highlighting the Culture Problem in Nation-States

How Can I Teach Peace When the Book Only Covers War?

Cooperation in Pluralistic Societies: An Analytic Mathematical Approach


Publications of Interest


Conflict Resolution | Ethnic Conflict | History | International Relations/Diplomacy | Reconciliation | General


Dynamics of Contention
By Doug McAdam, Sidney Tarrow, and Charles Tilly. 2001.

Cambridge; New York, Cambridge University Press. 387 pp with index. Hardback, $59.95, Paperback $21.95.

While the literature of social mobilization and violent conflict share a focus on issues of social conflict, there has been little work that incorporates both perspectives into a coherent model of social behavior. Considering everything from a strike to war part of "contentious politics," McAdam, Tarrow, and Tilly have been able to identify parts of larger social processes that can be examined and compared between cases. The insight that allows this is that these social processes cannot be seen through single-actor models and must involve the study of dynamic interaction.

Ethnography in Unstable Places: Everyday Lives in Contexts of Dramatic Political Change.
Edited by Carol J. Greenhouse, Elizabeth Mertz, and Kay B. Warren. 2002.
Durham, Duke University Press. 439 pp with index. Cloth $64.95, Paper $21.95.

Ethnography in Unstable Places is an impressive collection of essays built around the notion that there is something unique about social life under dramatic political change. In most cases, this change is the result of uneven globalization, as states are unable to maintain a balance between capital liberalization and social conditions. This book tackles not only the lives of people, but also the conceptual ideas necessary for discussing their lives. The essays argue that scholastic objectivity and boundaries are untenable in the contemporary world and that the social developments being studied require a new conception of the role of anthropology (and other disciplines) in light of the study of new social forms.

Operation Defensive Shield: Witnesses to Israeli War Crimes.
Edited by Muna Hamzeh and Todd May. 2003.
London; Sterling, Va., Pluto Press. Hardback $65.00, Paperback $19.95.

This book gathers firsthand accounts from individuals who have witnessed Israeli military actions that were part of Operation Defensive Shield, which was launched in March and April 2002. It seeks to show both what has happened during the operation and why it has happened. The editors view Operation Defensive Shield as an important reference for understanding Israeli actions in the conflict. The narratives primarily focus on the perspectives of Palestinians and Israeli and international peace activists. While there is a section examining American, European and Arab responsibility for Israeli policy, this book does not attempt to suggest a path toward peace. It concern is documentary, and this is a role it fills well.

No Place Like Home: Echoes from Kosovo
Written and photographed by Melanie Friend. 2001.
Softcover, $39.95. San Francisco Emeryville, CA, Midnight Editions ; Distributed by Publishers Group West.

Melanie Friend, a British photojournalist, covered the Balkans from 1989, and eventually moved from documenting devastation to finding other ways to visually represent what was happening, such as photographing room and gardens where police raids had taken place and then interview the individuals involved. In 1999, she traveled to Macedonia to interview refugees and chose to photograph them as if in a studio instead of as a traditional newspaper photographer.

No Place Like Home is a collection of 75 of Friend's photographs and comments from fifty of the people she interviewed. It covers the period from 1994-1999. As with the comics journalism of Joe Sacco's Safe Area Gorazde, No Place Like Home proves that often, by stepping outside our traditional texts, we can better understand the human aspects of conflict.
King of the Mountain : The Nature of Political Leadership
By Arnold M. Ludwig. 2002.
Lexington, University Press of Kentucky. 475 pp including index. Cloth $32.00.

In King of the Mountain, Arnold Ludwig argues that world leaders are driven to become leaders by the same dynamics that shape hierarchical behavior in other primates. Leaders gain power, whether autocratic or democratic, through the show of alpha-male behaviors. These findings are the result of an eighteen-year study of all primary rulers from independent countries in the 20th century.

An important aspect of Ludwig's argument is that the political system does not create alpha-male leaders, but that individuals who exhibit alpha-male behaviors are elevated to and maintain positions of leadership. Ludwig takes care to distance himself from the practice of politics, insisting that he is only a psychiatrist interested in the individuals and also presents his argument with a very readable narrative, saving the data exposition and methodology for the appendices.

Of special interest to OJPCR readers is the final chapter, when Ludwig considers the relevance of alpha-male behavior to warmaking. For him, warmaking is the utmost expression of the alpha-male. It is to be expected as the biologically-selected preference for human society. However, he also recognizes the potential for peace. First, some governmental forms, most notably checks-and-balances democracy, are formulated to limit the influence of any single individual. Second, although Ludwig is convinced of the relationship between human social behavior and that of the other high primates, he is not biologically deterministic. Instead, he does believe that we can overcome our biological natures and forge a world of peace.

Partner to History : The U.S. Role in South Africa's Transition to Democracy
Princeton N. Lyman. 2002.
Washington, D.C., United States Institute of Peace Press. 344 pp with index. Paper, $19.95.

As the US Ambassador to South Africa during that country's transition from apartheid, Princeton Lyman was is in a unique position to illuminate the role of the US in assisting this process. Lyman describes the actions of the US within the context of "conflict resolution diplomacy" and takes special effort to differential what he sees as the US's facilitation of the process as opposed to mediation of the conflict. Along with an excellent account of the transition process, Lyman includes a chapter describing the lessons that can (and have) been drawn from this case.

Bounded missions : military regimes and democratization in the Southern Cone and Brazil
Craig L. Arceneaux. 2001.
University Park, Penn, Pennsylvania State University Press. 262 pp. Cloth, $35.00, paperback $19.95.

Transitions from autocracy to democracy in South America are inconsistent. While many authors have examined external factors affecting these transitions, Craig Arceneaux focuses on internal military dynamics. The result is a study of eight political transitions, five in Brazil and others in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay. Each is documented and Arceneaux's arguments are developed through comparison.

Internally Displaced People: A Global Survey
Global IDP Survey. and Flyktningerêad (Norway) 2002.
London; Sterling, VA, Earthscan. Hardback $89.95, Paperback $32.50.

This report, produced by the Global IDP Project of the Norwegian Refugee Council and published by Earthscan, documents internal displacement around the world. It includes a few short chapters on the Global IDP Project, but by far the most useful aspects are the regional profiles contained in the rest of the book. Each of these begins with a regional overview and then concentrates on individual countries. While the country reports vary in detail, they all contain some understanding of the background to the problem, the current condition of internally displace persons, and the efforts being taken to meet the needs of the displaced people. No other global survey on internally displaces persons is as complete as database of the Global IDP Project, and this book is a handy way to become acquainted with the problem and its possible solutions.

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The Online Journal of Peace and Conflict Resolution is published by the Tabula Rasa Institute.

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