CIAO DATE: 02/01

International Spectator

The International Spectator

Volume XXXV No.1 (January-March 2000)


IAI Library Notes
By Maritza Cricorian


Conflict prevention policy of the European Union : recent engagements, future instruments : yearbook 1998/99 / SWP-Conflict Prevention Network (CPN) ; Peter Cross, Guenola Rasamoelina eds. - Baden-Baden : Nomos Verl.-Ges., c1999. - 229 p. - (Aktuelle Materialien zur internationalen Politik ; Bd.60/4). - ISBN 3-7890-6126-3
This yearbook contains the presentations made to the annual CPN conference held in Ebenhausen, as well as a few other research papers written in the same light.
The main aim of the book is to analyse a) crises and potential conflicts with reference to the interests and priorities of the EU and b) the instruments available for this preventive action. The breakdown of the book reflects these aims. To achieve them, investigation has focused on the possible profound causes of violent conflict (structural factors, political, social and institutional factors) as well as prevention measures, such as peace-building.
The authors acknowledge that the European Union can play a role in the prevention of conflicts by defining its priorities and creating a stable and safe environment.
As for the instruments available, in addition to those used in Africa with respect to the Organisation for African Unity (early warning, manuals, information exchange), the authors point to the Internet, the Conflict Impact Assessment System (CIAS), more restrictive arms export policies, economic compensation for the victims of state repression, and the promotion of "ethical" journalism.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development : the building of a bank for East Central Europe / Adam Bronstone. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c1999. - x, 197 p. - ISBN 0-7190-5551-2
While the institutional environment certainly had an influence on the birth of the EBRD and above all the timeframe in which this took place (18 months), in that the institutions which backed it shared the same fundamental ideas, the bank’s course since then seems to be marked more by disputes and controversies than cooperation. This volume attempts to explain how these disputes arose, their theoretical implications, possible alternatives to initial decisions and lessons to be learned. To do so, it sets the birth of the institution into the context of the nineties, underlining the similarities with the postwar period and analysing the organisational reference model (Chap. 1). It then gives an overview of the disputes that characterised the EBRD’s early years and the post-1992 phase, including those relating to transatlantic relations. Finally, it returns to an analysis of organisational models, evaluating their validity, and ponders the institution’s future.

The Italian Commonwealth / Limes. - Washington : The CSIS Press, c1999. x, 81 p. - (Significant issues series ; v.21, n.4). - ISBN 0-89206-354-8
This book is the outcome of cooperation between the New Italy Project of the CSIS and the Italian geopolitical journal, Limes. The five chapters written by Italian authors for an English-speaking readership are devoted to exploring Italy’s strengths on the world scene. Thus, it analyses the small and medium-sized enterprises and the industrial districts; the presence of Italian local authorities in the international arena; the Roman Catholic Church; and finally the cultural heritage and the lifestyle of Italians.

Kosovo and the Albanian dimension in Southeastern Europe: the need for regional security and conflict prevention / Thanos Veremis, Dimitrios Trantaphyllou eds. - Athens : ELIAMEP, 1999. - 330 p. - ISBN 960-7061-66-7
This volume presents the deliberations of two conferences organised by ELIAMEP before the NATO bombing over Kosovo took place: the first was held in March 1998 and the second in January 1999.
Gathered and edited at a turning point in the conflict (April 1999), they present various possible developments of the situation, including the disintegration of Yugoslavia and the partition of Kosovo. Above all, the editors point to the need for political and economic integration of the countries of Southeastern Europe into transatlantic structures. In particular, they invoke more or less full membership in NATO, bound by the commitment to not change their borders, to resolve internal disputes peacefully (through confidence-building measures) and to continue along the road to multilateralism and regional cooperation.
Europe, for its part, should call a conference on regional integration projects and should make an effort to coordinate assistance more effectively.

The law of the sea / R.R.Churchill and A.V. Lowe. - 3.rd ed. - Yonkers [NY] : Juris Publishing ; Manchester : Manchester University Press, 1999. - l, 494 p. - (Melland Schill studies in international law). - ISBN 0-7190-4382-4 (Manchester University Press ; pbk)
This edition of The law of the sea, updating the material to 31 August 1998, seems to be wholly revised with respect to the last (1988, the first came out in 1983).
The book deals with public international law of the sea including not only the 1982 UN Convention but also complementary customary and conventional law. It does not consider, however, private maritime law or the laws of war.
The book is divided by maritime zones (international waters, straits, archipelagos, etc.) and by special uses of the sea (navigation, fishing, military uses, etc.). In the end, it also touches on disputes and the interconnection between international law and "municipal" law, revealing conflicts of interest, not only between different states, but also within states. For the latter, the manual attempts to provide solutions.

The new agenda for peace research / edited by Ho-Won Jeong. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c1999. - xvi, 365 p. - ISBN 1-84014-082-8
This volume offers a definition and an update on the "interdiscipline" of peace research, combining theoretical developments with concrete strategies for peace. Critically assessing past theories and practices, the authors propose a new agenda for peace research. In four parts and fifteen chapters, they examine such subjects as the instruments of peace; connections among identity, globality and war; the multiform sources of violent conflict and the strategies for dealing with them; peacekeeping and conflict resolution methods; prevention policies; defence of minority rights; environmental conflicts; post development, developing a culture of non-violence; satisfying fundamental human needs; the birth of a regional civil society; and vertical polarisation of the global system. All are examined in light of the structural changes under way.

Palestinian perspectives / Wolfgang Freund ed. - Frankfurt/Main : Peter Lang, c1999. - XX, 207 p. - (Controversies from the Promised land ; 1). - ISBN 3-631-34307-8
The reconstruction of Palestinian nationalism : between revolution and statehood / Helena Lindholm Schulz. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c1999. - xii, 194 p. - (New approaches to conflict analysis). - ISBN 0-7190-5596-2
Two books dedicated to the Palestinian question, but with different intentions and methodological approaches. The first, also the first issue of a new editorial series, attempts to convey the opinions of West Bank and Gaza Arabs who are against a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict imposed from above. The opinions, recorded by the author during encounters in Bethlehem in 1997, are divided into "Academic studies" and "Essays, reports, opinion papers": the former are expressed by moderate researchers and scholars; the latter by persons involved politically, often exponents of Hamas or the Islamic Jihad. The author does not comment.
The second volume tries to explain the origin and the constant development of nationalism and the Palestinian identity, as well as the internal and external factors that determine it , offering as "inside" a view as possible, that is, of the protagonists. The result of field work (50 interviews in 1994-95, updated in 1997), the study also analyses official Palestinian documents such as the bayanat (proclamations of the Unified National Leadership of the Uprising). Both interviews and texts are set into context – geographic and temporal.

Peacekeeping in Africa / edited by Oliver Furley, Roy May. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c1998. - xvi, 319 p. - ISBN 1-85972-492-2
A survey of the most important peacekeeping operations – both successful and unsuccessful – that have taken place in Africa. After examining such aspects as the role of international and regional organisations, and those of the major powers and of African states, it goes on to outline the future prospects for peacekeeping.
Following an introduction to the subjects mentioned above, the book presents eight case studies (Zimbabwe, Chad, Somalia, Mozambique, Angola, Namibia, Liberia, Rwanda/Burundi), considered good examples of the tasks and limits of peacekeeping.
Various chapters make reference to 1989 as a breaking point marking the emergence of so-called Afro-pessimism or Africa fatigue among the great powers and the members of the United Nations. The authors call for a reform of the mandate and procedures of the UN and fuel the debate on the need for a rapid intervention force that could be regionally based or kept on stand-by.
Furthermore, they highlight some current risks: the emergence of a grey zone between peace enforcement and peacekeeping and the shift towards new tasks that are more of a humanitarian than of a political nature, both of which throw doubt upon the impartiality and neutrality of UN forces in the eyes of the "peace-kept". The last chapter is interesting in this respect as it is dedicated to the point of view of the peace-kept.

Per una convergenza mediterranea sui diritti dell'uomo / a cura di Paolo Ungari e Milena Modica. - Roma : EURoma, [1997]-c1999. - 2v. - (Centro di ricerca e di studio sui diritti dell'uomo ; 4-5)
v.1: Le "carte" delle organizzazioni araba, islamica e africana. - ISBN 88-8066-171-X
v.2: Nuovi documenti commentati. - ISBN 88-8066-193-0
A group of documents produced by the research group of the "Centro di ricerca e di studio sui diritti dell'uomo" of the Guido Carli LUISS university in Rome involving various universities, directed until September 1999 by the late Prof. Ungari.
The objective of the group/work is to define a minimum common body of law on human rights among the Mediterranean littoral countries. Thus both the first and the second volumes of this mini-series contain legal texts referring to various levels (state, international, non-governmental (NGO), associations and religious communities) and provide useful educational instruments such as comments, a chronology of the drafting of human rights charters in the Arab-Islamic world and Africa, and an essential bibliography.
A third volume on "Orientamenti critici e ricostruttivi" should appear by the end of the year 2000.

Policy competition and foreign direct investment in Europe / edited by Philip Raines and Ross Brown. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c1999. - 202 p. - ISBN 1-84014-768-7
This collection of the literature existing on the relations between government policies and foreign direct investment (FDI), as defined by UNCTAD, and updated to January 1998, is part of a broader OECD project carried out in collaboration with the European Policies Research Centre in Glasgow.
The aim of the volume is to assess governmental approaches to FDI, identify future trends in FDI and relative policy responses, study the consequences at national level of the competition policy in Europe.
The essay is divided into two sections: the first, which deals with the policy context of FDI in Europe, is in turn divided into two chapters, the first focusing on Western Europe and the second on the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. The second looks at competition policy, especially in Western Europe. Portfolio investment flows and relative policies are deliberately not examined. A final chapter of conclusions closes the book.

Political issues in Ireland today / edited by Neil Collins. - 2.nd ed. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c1999. - (Politics today). - ISBN 0-7190-5404-4 (pbk)
This is the second edition of a successful handbook and the complement to the similar Irish Politics Today, brought out by the same editor in 1997.
With respect to the previous edition, this volume contains some updates and new subjects. The first two chapters, for example, present the latest developments relative to the constitution and regional reforms. The third and fourth introduce the subject of public services and the social partnership in Northern Ireland. The following chapters deal with sectoral policies which are of particular interest for the Irish political agenda: corruption; relations with the EU; the economy; health, housing and the environment; women’s issues. The last (12th) chapter focuses on the peace agreement in Northern Ireland.

The politics and economics of defence industries / edited by Efraim Inbar and Benzion Zilberfarb. - London : Frank Cass, c1998. - xviii, 225 p. - (BESA studies in international security). - ISBN 0-7146-4410-2 (pbk)
The proceedings of an international conference organised by the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies and the Center for Defense and Peace Economics, both of Bar-Ilan University.
Following an introduction to the general questions (state of the art of the defence industry, trends, problems related to conversion), the book goes on to examine the individual countries and regions and their experience with industrial restructuring. Starting with the United States, the main producer at the international level, it then looks at European and other Western counties and beyond (Great Britain, Israel, China, Arab states, Argentina and Brazil).

Pushing back the boundaries : the European Union and Central and Eastern Europe / edited by Mike Mannin. - Manchester : Manchester University Press, c1999. - xvi, 352 p. - ISBN 0-7190-52157 (pbk)
This essay considers relations between Western and Eastern Europe, with particular reference to the EU in light of the Agenda 2000 and enlargement to the east.
Thus, the book is divided into two parts: the first, which covers a broader geographic area than the second and reflects a "Eurocentric" (west-east) view, follows the process of political and economic transition in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe to a democratic and liberal system, and the implications of this process for security as well as environmental and social transformations. The second part, centered on the Visegrad countries with a more east-west approach, is made up of four case studies (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary). Each country is studied in relation to the subject listed in the first part of the book that is of most importance to it. This method reveals the diversity of experiences and, consequently, the challenges that face application of Agenda 2000.
Concluding the volume, a useful detailed chronology of East-West relations since 1945 and a summary of the contents of Agenda 2000.

The rule of law in Central Europe : the reconstruction of legality, constitutionalism and civil society in the post-Communist countries / edited by Jirí Pribán, James Young. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c1999. - viii, 277 p. - (socio-legal studies). - ISBN 1-84014-719-9
A collection of 14 essays by as many political scientists and legal experts on the process of transition in Central Europe. With the exception of the introduction, the essays are divided by geographic area: Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and, with only one chapter, Russia. The subjects dealt with are constitution-making since 1989; the persisting communist legacy; the modalities of application or non-application of the constitution; the struggle to assert the principles of civil society. All essays point to the symbolic value of the new constitutions and the values they defend: the rule of law and the idea of constitutionalism; the protection of human rights, the principles of civil society and individual freedom.

Sudan's Predicament: civil war, displacement and ecological degradation / edited by Girma Kebbede. - Aldershot : Ashgate, c1999. - xii, 147 p. - (The making of modern Africa). - ISBN 0-7546-1020-9
The book is in part the product of two periods (1988 and 1994) of extensive interviews in Sudan by the editor, also the author of most of the texts (5 out of 7).
Following an introduction to the country describing the current situation of endemic conflict, poverty, and totalitarianism, the book tries to identify the causes, analysing (Chap. 2) the role of the Arab elites in the north and relative ethnic and religious prejudices; the responsibility of the government and the liberation movement/armies for the suffering and impoverishment of the population (Chap. 3); the return of tuberculosis and how it is perceived by patients and care-givers (Chap. 4); the nature of the war between the north and the south of the country, transformed in recent years into an ethno-religious conflict for economic resources (Chap. 5); the social, economic and political aspects of environmental deterioration (Chap. 6); and finally (Chap. 7), the challenges facing the Sudanese political forces seeking a peaceful solution to the conflict. The book discusses the hypothesis of the secession of the south and future forms of government.