Peacekeeping and

International Conflict Resolution

(PICR 060401)

A Course Produced by
The United Nations Institute for
Training and Research,
Programme of Correspondence Instruction in
Peacekeeping Operations
Course Authors:
Professor Tom Woodhouse and
Dr. Tamara Duffey, Bradford University, UK
Series Editor:
Harvey J. Langholtz
UNITAR Programme
of Correspondence Instruction
in Peacekeeping Operations
Dag Hammarskjöld Centre
Box 20475
New York, NY 10017-0009
Programme UNITAR de Formation
Par Correspondance Aux
Opérations de Maintien de la Paix
Palais des Nations
1211 Geneve 10
Suisse

iii
Peacekeeping and
International Conflict Resolution
(PICR 060401)
A course produced by
The United Nations Institute for Training and Research,
Programme of Correspondence Instruction in
Peacekeeping Operations
Course Authors:
Professor Tom Woodhouse and
Dr. Tamara Duffey, Bradford University, UK
Series Editor:
Harvey J. Langholtz
© COPYRIGHT 2000
UNITAR POCI
Address all correspondence to:
UNITAR POCI
Dag Hammarskjöld Centre
Box 20475
New York, NY 10017-0009
USA
iv
UNITED NATIONS INSTITUTE
FOR TRAINING AND RESEARCH
(UNITAR)
PROGRAMME OF
CORRESPONDENCE INSTRUCTION
IN PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS
BOX 20475
DAG HAMMARSKJÖLD CENTRE
NEW YORK, NY 10017-0009
INSTITUT DES NATIONS UNIES
POUR LA FORMATION ET LA RECHERCHE
(UNITAR)
PROGRAMME UNITAR DE FORMATION
PAR CORRESPONDANCE AUX
OPERATIONS DE MAINTIEN DE LA PAIX
PALAIS DES NATIONS
1211 GENEVE 10
SUISSE
Dear Student:
I am pleased you have enrolled in the correspondence course Peacekeeping and
International Conflict Resolution. The course authors, Professor Tom Woodhouse and Dr.
Tamara Duffey, have written this course to provide the student with a fundamental understanding
of the field of Conflict Resolution in both theory and application.
Some may assert that this course both claims to do the impossible and also claims that
the impossible is possible. Is it possible for a self-paced correspondence course to train the
student in international conflict resolution? Is it possible for individual peacekeepers to conduct
international conflict resolution? This course, through 10 well-structured lessons, will acquaint
the student with the most important topics of conflict resolution. Each lesson contains lesson
objectives, reading material, lists of approaches and points to consider, a self-administering quiz,
suggested outside readings, and an exercise for students to apply what they have learned in the
lesson. In addition, students are encouraged to participate in UNITAR POCI’s on-line chat room
through our home page at www.unitarpoci.org. Here students from around the world may share
views and discuss this course and other peacekeeping-related issues, just as they would in a
resident educational setting.
Can individual peacekeepers, civilian police, diplomats, NGO employees, and
humanitarian aid workers of all sorts actually resolve international conflict? Can actions on the
ground – even small ones – lead to international conflict resolution? Of course the answer is yes.
The end of the 20
th
Century and the opening of the 21
st
have seen a long list of conflicts that have
turned violent – The Middle East, Rwanda, East Timor, Yugoslavia, Somalia, Cambodia,
Mozambique, Central America, Haiti, Sierra Leone. No region is immune. Additional conflicts
may go unresolved even within the borders of the nations we think of as being at peace. And yet
every day peacekeepers of many forms do what is possible at the local level to resolve disputes
peacefully, contain the scope and level of violence, and seek resolution of deeply rooted
conflicts.
By completing this course the student will gain a better understanding of the nature of
conflict, the role of culture in conflict, concepts of conflict resolution, early warning, peace
settlements, and post-conflict peace building. I wish you every success in your study of the
material in this course and in your endeavors following the completion of the course.
Sincerely,
Harvey J. Langholtz, Ph.D.,
Director, UNITAR POCI
v
FORMAT OF STUDY
This course is designed for independent study, at a pace determined by the student.
Course format and materials permit:
MODULAR STUDY
EASE OF REVIEW
INCREMENTAL LEARNING
Materials needed for the completion of this course are enclosed with the course
and listed below :
Course booklet: Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution
(End-of-Course Examination included)
Answer Sheet for End-of-Course Examination
Return Envelope for End-of-Course Examination
Student Feedback Sheet
STUDENTS RESPONSIBILITIES
The student is responsible for :
Learning course material
Completing the End-of-Course Examination
Submitting the End-of-Course Examination
Please see the End-of-Course Examination Answer Sheet
for submission instructions.
vi
METHOD OF STUDY
The following are suggestions for how to proceed with a UNITAR-POCI
Course. Though the student may have alternate approaches that are
effective, the following hints have worked for many.
Before you begin actual studies, first browse through the overall course material. Notice
the lesson outlines which give you an idea of what will be involved as you proceed.
The material should be logical and straightforward. Instead of memorizing individual
details, strive to understand concepts and overall perspectives in regard to
peacekeeping operations.
Set up guidelines regarding how you want to schedule your time.
Study the lesson content. At the beginning of each lesson, orient yourself to the main
points by reviewing the lesson objectives. Skim through the lesson before reading it in
its entirety. Think of the main points.
When you finish a lesson, take the End-of-Lesson Quiz. For any error, go back to the
lesson section and re-read it. Before you go on, be aware of the discrepancy that led
to the error.
After you complete all lessons, take time to review the main points of each lesson.
Then, while the material is fresh in your mind, take the End-of-Course Examination in
one sitting.
Your exam will be scored, and if you achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher, you will
be awarded a Certificate-of-Completion. If you score below 75%, you will be given one
opportunity to take a second version of the End-of-Course Examination.
vii
FOREWORD:
A COURSE ON PEACEKEEPING AND
INTERNATIONAL CONFLICT RESOLUTION
Peacekeeping has become the prominent intervention strategy for managing and
resolving post-Cold War conflicts in the global community. However, because of the
increasingly complex threats to international security, peacekeeping responses have become
much more elaborate. They have become functionally more diverse (including conflict
prevention, humanitarian assistance, human rights monitoring, electoral monitoring,
demobilisation and rehabilitation, peace building and post-conflict reconstruction), with the
composition of missions developing accordingly (including military and civilian peacekeepers,
humanitarian personnel, inter-governmental, governmental and non-governmental actors).
The new demands being made on peacekeeping and the multifaceted character of
contemporary operations call for greater attention to be paid to the training and preparation of
anyone involved in a peacekeeping operation. One essential component of the training and
preparation is a better understanding of conflict and its resolution. Past peacekeeping
experience clearly demonstrates that to be successful international actors require an awareness
of the nature and relevance of Conflict Resolution theory and practice to their work, from
policy-making above to activities on the ground.

Aim
The overall aim of this course is to provide the student with a basic understanding of the
field of Conflict Resolution and its application – theoretically and practically – to peacekeeping
intervention in contemporary international conflicts.

Scope
The course explores the emergence and development of the academic discipline of
Conflict Resolution and its relation to the evolution of peacekeeping. The contributions of
Conflict Resolution theory and practise to peacekeeping practise are identified early on and
considered throughout the course. The nature of conflict and the dynamics of contemporary
conflict are defined, along with the key concepts and techniques for resolving conflict. The
course explores the significant areas that will improve responses to today’s complex
emergencies, including conflict analysis and mapping, early warning and conflict prevention,
contingency and complementarity approaches, interagency co-ordination, post-conflict peace
building and reconciliation, cultural understanding and gender awareness.
Approach
The course focuses predominantly at the international level of conflict and conflict
intervention, however, many of the principles and techniques that underlie this level are
applicable to other levels of conflict (i.e., interpersonal, intergroup, and intercommunal). As
well, in any international intervention process, occasions will arise whereby military and
viii
civilian peacekeepers may be required to engage in conflict resolution activities at the
interpersonal and intergroup levels.
Following each lesson a Recommended Reading is given from the textbook by Hugh
Miall, Oliver Ramsbotham, and Tom Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict Resolution.
Additional readings are also suggested to allow the student further exploration of the lesson’s
content.
To assist the student in understanding the issues in the lessons, and to demonstrate how
conflict resolution techniques and processes may be applied in conflict situations, the course
includes a interactive exercises at the end of each lesson in addition to the self-scoring End-of-
Lesson Quiz. The aim of the exercise is to apply the concepts, skills and approaches raised in
the lesson to a personal conflict/conflict resolution experience, or to a conflict scenario
provided, or to a current conflict situation. Students are invited to engage with the exercises on
their own or with colleagues, friends, or family members.
Students may also take advantage of the Peacekeeping and International Conflict
Resolution chat room on the UNITAR POCI internet home-page. The chat room allows
students to discuss the course issues, reflect on the exercises, and share peacekeeping and
conflict resolution experiences with other course participants.
Audience
The course is aimed at anyone working in a zone of conflict, whether a government or
international organisation representative designing intervention policy, a military
soldier/officer/observer securing the peace in a peacekeeping environment, a civilian police
officer maintaining law and order, a humanitarian worker providing relief in a complex
emergency, or a non-governmental representative working with local communities. As such,
the course may be useful to both military and civilian representatives of the international
peacekeeping community.
Application
Given the complexity and diversity of contemporary conflicts, and the range of actors
involved in trying to create and sustain peace in war-torn societies, the United Nations course
on Peacekeeping & International Conflict Resolution does not intend to provide the student
with a prescription for resolving the world’s conflicts. As no two conflicts are identical,
effective conflict intervention requires understanding, flexibility and creativity. It also requires
the ability to assess a situation and determine whether it is safe and/or constructive to intervene
or not to intervene.
The course offers the student a broad understanding of the fundamental concepts,
principles, and techniques of conflict resolution that may be applied in a variety of contexts and
on a number of different levels. It seeks to provide the student with some of the conceptual,
analytical and practical tools that will allow him or her to understand and operate more
effectively in peacekeeping environments.
ix
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Peacekeeping and
International Conflict Resolution
Letter to the Student . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iv
Format of Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v
Method of Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vi
Foreword . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii
Table of Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix
Lesson 1
The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution . . . . . . . . . 1
Introduction
Historical Background
The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping
Lesson 2
The Nature of Conflict . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Introduction
Defining Conflict
Conflict Structure and Dynamics
Objective and Subjective Dimensions of Conflict
Positions, Interest, Needs and Values
Power
Lesson 3
Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
Introduction
Conflict Management, Settlement, Resolution and Transformation
Win-Win Outcomes
Third Party Intervention
Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution
Conflict Resolution Training
x
Lesson 4
Contemporary Conflict Dynamics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
Introduction
Defining Major Contemporary Conflicts
Trends, Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict
Conflict Types
Theories of Conflict
Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict
Lesson 5
Conflict Mapping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
Introduction
What is Conflict Mapping?
A Conflict Map of Rwanda
Lesson 6
Early Warning and Conflict Prevention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95
Introduction
The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep” Prevention
The Prevention of Violent Conflicts: Cases and Organisations
Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP
Lesson 7
Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War-Zones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115
Introduction
The Contingency-Complementarity Model
Peacekeeping in the Contingency Model
Defining Peacekeeping
The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s
Criticisms of Peacekeeping in the 1990s
New Thinking About Peacekeeping
Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution
xi
Lesson 8
Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139
Introduction
Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building
A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo
The United Nations Framework for Peace Building
Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below
Co-ordinating Military and Civilian Roles in Peace Building
Contingency and Complementarity in Practice: A Case Study of
Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia
Lesson 9
Culture, Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165
Introduction
Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
Cultural Response 1
Cultural Response 2
Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping
Case Study: Intervention in Somalia
Developing Cultural Awareness Skills
Lesson 10
Gender Issues in Peacekeeping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 191
Introduction
Gender and Conflict Management Styles
Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations
Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
A Gender Analysis of Conflict
The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace Building
End-of-Course Examination . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 215
xii
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LESSON 1
THE EMERGENCE AND DEVELOPMENT OF
THE FIELD OF CONFLICT RESOLUTION
1. Introduction
2. Historical Background of Conflict Resolution
3. The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution and
Peacekeeping
The goal of peace operations is not military victory. The conflict is the enemy, rather than
specific enemy forces.
- Richard Rinaldo (1994), US Army Field Manual 100-23: Peace Operations
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 2
LESSON OBJECTIVES
In this lesson you will be introduced to the historical origins and development of the
academic field of conflict resolution, beginning with the origins in peace research and the first
institutional developments in the 1950s and 1960s. Recent debates and ideas are reviewed, and
the relevance of conflict resolution ideas to peacekeeping is defined.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Trace the historical origins of the field of Conflict Resolution;
Identify the key pioneers and institutions that have contributed to the development of
conflict resolution theory and practice;
Discuss some of the methods and processes of conflict management advocated by these
contributors.
Define the relationship between the academic field of Conflict Resolution and the
practice of peacekeeping;
Summarise the contributions that conflict resolution theory and practice offer to the
practice of peacekeeping;
Begin reflecting on his/her own conflict and conflict resolution experiences in conflict
situations and peacekeeping environments.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 3
1. Introduction
1.1 Conflict Resolution
As well as being a set of techniques for the resolution of conflict by a third party, Conflict
Resolution is an applied academic study that has been defined over the past 50 years, and has
come of age in the post-Cold War era. It has been informed by a variety of academic disciplines,
including international relations, economics, development studies, law, psychology and
psychotherapy, management, communication studies, anthropology, sociology and peace
research. Based on the assumption that conflict can be a catalyst for positive personal and social
change, conflict resolution focuses on preventing, decreasing, stopping or transforming violent
conflict using peaceful, non-violent methods.
1.2 Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping
The academic study and practice of conflict resolution has much in common with the role
of peacekeeping in international conflict management. At about the same time that the field of
Conflict Resolution was emerging at the height of the Cold War, Dag Hammarskjöld and Lester
B. Pearson were defining the basic principles of peacekeeping. These principles were to guide
the work of one of the first peacekeeping operation, the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF
I), created in response to the Suez Canal crisis in the Middle East in 1956. Both areas have
developed a common interest in the dynamics and resolution of conflict and are underpinned by
many of the same concepts and principles. Despite a history of “mutual neglect” between the
field of Conflict Resolution and the practice of peacekeeping, recent attempts have been made to
merge the theory and practice of conflict resolution and peacekeeping.
2. Historical Background of Conflict Resolution
In this section, the historical evolution of the field of Conflict Resolution is outlined and
individuals who have contributed strategically to the subject are identified. The discussion is not
exhaustive; many others have played important roles. In the later stages of development, a
number of critical perspectives have further enhanced the field.
2.1 Precursors: Before 1945
The failure of the variety of peace, socialist and liberal internationalist movements to
prevent the outbreak of the First World War motivated many people to develop a “science of
peace” that would provide a firmer basis for preventing future wars. Prominent here were the
early empirical studies of war and conflict conducted in the inter-war years by Pitrim Sorokin,
Lewis Fry Richardson and Quincy Wright.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 4
2.1.1 Pitrim Sorokin
Sorokin was a Professor of Sociology in Russia, but following a dispute with Lenin in
1922, he left for the United States. Here he founded the Department of Sociology at Harvard in
1930. The third volume of his four-volume Social and Cultural Dynamics, published in the late-
1930s, contained an analysis of war, including a statistical survey of warfare since the sixth-
century BC. Both Wright and Richardson were to later refer to Sorokin’s work.
2.1.2 Lewis Fry Richardson
Richardson was born into a prominent Quaker family in England. He worked for the
Meteorological Office, but served from 1913 to the end of the war with the Friend’s Ambulance
Service in France. His experience in the war, along with his background in science and
mathematics and his growing interest in the field of psychology, led him to research the causes of
war. The first product of this research was an essay in 1919, “The Mathematical Psychology of
War”, in which what is now known as his “arms race model” first appeared. He compiled a
catalogue of every conflict he could find information on since 1820, and, by the mid-1940s, he
had collated his studies. However, they were not published until after his death when Wright
(with whom Richardson had entered into correspondence in his later years) and other academics
succeeded in having them published in two volumes (Arms and Insecurity and Statistics of Deadly
Quarrels) in 1960. His work inspired the formation of the Richardson Institute of Peace and
Conflict Research in London.
2.1.3 Quincy Wright
Wright was Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago from 1923,
becoming Professor of International Law in 1931. An enthusiastic advocate of the work of the
League of Nations in the 1920s and 1930s, and later of the United Nations, he produced his
monumental work, A Study of War, after sixteen years of comprehensive research. This study was
one of the first attempts to make an empirical synthesis of the variety of factors related to the
historical incidence of war. In 1970, a committee of American scholars nominated him for the
Nobel Peace Prize.
2.1.4 Other Precursors
Elsewhere, pioneering work was being done which would later enrich Conflict Resolution.
Prominent here was the thinking of Mary Parker Follett in the field of organisational behaviour
and labour-management relations. Advocating a “mutual gains” approach to negotiation
(associated with what was later called “integrative bargaining”) against the traditional
concession/convergence approach (associated with “distributive bargaining”), she anticipated
much of the later problem-solving agenda. (This will be further discussed in Lessons 2 and 3.)
Initiatives in other fields also contributed to the future of interdisciplinary study of conflict
resolution: in psychology, frustration-aggression theories of human conflict and work on the
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 5
social-psychology of groups, in political studies, the analysis of political revolution; in
international studies, the functionalist approach to overcoming the realist win-lose dynamic of
competitive inter-state relations through cross-border institution-building (e.g., creation of the
European Union). Accounts and analyses of pacifist and non-violent objectives and strategies
have also influenced and defined the formation of the Conflict Resolution field. For example, the
historical traditions of pacifism, such as those contained in the beliefs of Quakers, Mennonites,
and Buddhists and the ideas of Gandhi, have enhanced the academic understanding of violent
conflict and peaceful alternatives.
2.2 Foundations: The 1950s and 1960s
The historical evolution of Conflict Resolution gained momentum in the 1950s and 1960s,
at the height of the Cold War, when the development of nuclear weapons and conflict between the
superpowers seemed to threaten human survival. A group of pioneers from different disciplines
saw the value of studying conflict as a general phenomenon, with similar properties, whether it
occurs in international relations, domestic politics, industrial relations, communities, families, or
between individuals. However, they were not taken seriously by some. The international relations
profession had its own understanding of international conflict and did not see value in the new
approaches as proposed. The combination of analysis and practice implicit in the new ideas was
not easy to reconcile with traditional scholarly institutions or the traditions of practitioners such as
diplomats and politicians.
Yet, the new ideas attracted interest and the field began to grow and spread. Individuals in
North America and Europe began to establish research groups, formal centres in academic
institutions and scholarly journals to develop these ideas. (The first institution of peace and
conflict research was the Peace Research Laboratory, founded by Theodore F. Lentz in St. Louis,
Missouri, after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.) The field also began to develop
its own subdivisions, with different groups studying international crises, internal wars, social
conflicts and techniques ranging from negotiation and mediation to experimental games.
2.2.1 Kenneth Boulding and the Journal of Conflict Resolution
Boulding was born in England in 1910. Motivated personally and spiritually as a member
of the Society of Friends (Quakers), and professionally as an economist, he moved to America in
1937, married Elise Bjorn-Hansen in 1941, and began with her a partnership which was to make
an important contribution to the formation of peace and conflict research. After the war he was
appointed Professor of Economics at the University of Michigan. Here, with a small group of
academics, (including the mathematician-biologist Anatol Rapoport, the social psychologist
Herbert Kelman and the sociologist Norman Angell), he initiated the Journal of Conflict
Resolution (JCR) in 1957, and set up the Center for Research on Conflict Resolution in 1959.
Boulding’s publications focused on the issue of preventing war, partly because of the
failures of the discipline of international relations. His book, Conflict and Defense, advanced the
thesis of the decline of the nation state, while Perspectives on the Economics of Peace argued that
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 6
conventional prescriptions from international relations were unable to recognise, let alone analyse,
the consequences of this decline. If war was the outcome of inherent characteristics in the
sovereign state system then it might be prevented by a reform of international organisation, and by
the development of a research and information capability. Data collection and processing could
enable the advance of scientific knowledge about the build-up of conflicts, to replace the
inadequate insights available through standard diplomacy. For example, in the first issue of the
JCR, Wright contributed an article proposing a “project on a world intelligence centre”, which
demonstrated Richardson’s influence, whilst anticipating what has more recently been called
“early warning” and “conflict prevention”.
2.2.2 Johan Galtung and Conflict Resolution in Northern Europe
The emergence of peace and conflict research in Scandinavia is notable, most remarkably
in the influential work of Galtung. His output over the past 35 years has been phenomenal and his
influence on the institutionalisation and ideas of peace research seminal. Galtung, a Norwegian,
became visiting Professor at Columbia University in 1958, returning to Oslo in 1960 to help
found a unit for research into conflict and peace at the University of Oslo– the precursor to the
International Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). He was also the founding editor of the
Journal of Peace Research, launched in 1964.
Galtung developed the distinction between direct violence (e.g., children are murdered),
structural violence (e.g., children die through poverty) and cultural violence (i.e., whatever blinds
us to this or seeks to justify it). We end direct violence by changing conflict behaviours, structural
violence by removing structural injustices, and cultural violence by changing attitudes. To this can
be added his further distinction between negative peace and positive peace, the former
characterised by the absence of direct violence, the latter by also overcoming structural and
cultural violence as well. Another influential idea attributed to Galtung is the conflict triangle
(discussed in Lesson 2). He was also the first to make an analytical distinction between three
tasks that could be undertaken by the international community in response to conflict:
peacekeeping, peacemaking and Peace Building. These categories were also used (but with
revised definitions) in Boutros-Ghali’s Agenda for Peace (1992), to describe the differences
between intervention operations employed at different stages of conflict.

Further emergence of peace research institutions in Europe during the 1960s was
widespread. In 1962 the Polemological Institute was formed in Groningen, Holland; in 1966 the
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) was opened to commemorate Sweden’s
150 years of peace; and in 1969 the Tampere Peace Research Institute was formed in Finland.
2.2.3 John Burton and a New Paradigm in International Studies
Burton was born in Australia in 1915. Following his studies at the London School of
Economics from 1938, he joined the Australian civil service, attended the foundation conference
of the United Nations in San Francisco, served in the Australian Department of External Affairs,
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 7
and served as High Commissioner in Ceylon. After a research fellowship at the Australian
National University in Canberra, he was appointed to a post at University College London in
1963. His appointment coincided with the formation of the Conflict Research Society in London,
of which he became the first Honorary Secretary.
Whilst a diplomat, Burton became dissatisfied with traditional diplomacy and began to
advocate bringing together multidisciplinary insights about conflict at the international level from
a much broader perspective than the formal international relations field. He broke away from the
sociological tradition of regarding conflict as dysfunctional, instead seeing conflict as intrinsic in
human relationships. His ideas about how to better handle conflict were influenced by systems
theory and games theory as means of analysing the options available to conflict parties. An early
product of this initiative was the publication of Conflict in Society.
This was linked to attempts to co-ordinate international study through the formation of an
International Peace Research Association (IPRA), which held its first conference in Groningen,
Holland (1965). At the same time, Burton began to develop his theories about the use of
controlled communication, or the problem-solving method, in international conflict (discussed in
Lesson 3). This led to the formation of the Centre for the Analysis of Conflict at the University
College, London (1966) under the Directorship of Burton.
Burton later spent a period at the University of Maryland, where he assisted Edward Azar
with the formation of the Center for International Development and Conflict Management. Azar
and Burton developed the concept of protracted social conflict, an important part of an emerging
theory of international conflict, combining domestic-social and international dimensions and
focusing at a hybrid level between interstate war and purely domestic unrest. This model
anticipated much of the re-evaluation of international relations thinking that has occurred since
the end of the Cold War.
What made it possible to unlock these intractable conflicts for Burton was the application
of human needs theory through the problem-solving approach. Needs theory holds that deep-
rooted conflicts are caused by the denial of one or more basic human needs, such as security,
identity and recognition. The theory distinguishes between interests and needs: interests, being
primarily about material goods, can be traded, bargained and negotiated; needs, being non-
material, cannot be traded or satisfied by power bargaining. However, non-material human needs
are not scarce resources (e.g., territory, oil, minerals, and water) and are not necessarily in short
supply. With proper understanding, conflicts based on unsatisfied needs can be resolved.
2.3 Constructions: The 1970s and 1980s
By the early 1970s, Conflict Resolution had defined its specific subject area. It was
attempting to formulate a theoretical understanding of destructive conflict at three levels, with a
view to refining the most appropriate practical responses. Firstly, at the interstate level, the main
effort went into translating detente between the superpowers into formal win-win agreements.
Secondly, at the level of domestic politics, the focus was on developing expertise in Alternative
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 8
Dispute Resolution (ADR) (e.g., family conciliation, labour and community mediation). Thirdly,
between the two, and the most significant development in the 1970s and 1980s, was the definition
and analysis of deep-rooted conflicts (or “intractable conflicts” or “protracted social conflicts”), in
which the distinction between international and domestic level causes was seen to be blurred.
(These types of conflict will be described in Lesson 4.) This period also saw the first attempts to
apply the problem-solving approach to real conflicts.
2.3.1 The Harvard School: Problem Solving and Principled Negotiation
Three groups of scholar-practitioners were involved in the development of the theory and
practice of problem-solving, initially referred to as “controlled communication”: a group based at
the University College, London, a group at Yale University and, later, a group at Harvard
University. The first attempts to apply the problem-solving method were in two workshops
organised by the London group in 1965 and 1966. They were designed to address the conflicts
between Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia, and between the Greek and Turkish communities in
Cyprus, respectively. One of the facilitators of the second workshop was Herbert C. Kelman, a
leading social psychologist who formed the Program on International Conflict Analysis and
Resolution at Harvard. He went on to become the leading practitioner-scholar of the problem-
solving method over the next thirty years, specialising in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Kelman’s
series of Arab-Israeli interactive problem-solving workshops (1974-91) had an important
influence on the eventual conclusion of the Oslo Accords in 1993.
Harvard has continued to be at the forefront of the study of negotiation and conflict
resolution. The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School involves a consortium of
academic centres and draws from a range of disciplines; it also produces the Negotiation Journal.
A significant development within the program is the principled negotiation approach, which
distinguishes between positions (i.e., concrete demands) held by the parties and their underlying
interests. It has been popularised through Roger Fisher and William Ury’s best-selling title
Getting to Yes.
2.3.2 Adam Curle: The Theory and Practice of Mediation
Coming from an academic background in anthropology, psychology and development
education, Curle moved from Harvard to take up the first Chair of Peace Studies at the University
of Bradford, UK (1973). Curle’s academic interest in peace was a product of front-line
experiences with conflict in Pakistan and Africa, where he not only witnessed the threats to
development from the eruption of violent conflicts, but was increasingly drawn into the practice of
peacemaking as a mediator.
From his experiences of the Biafran War in Nigeria, Curle felt a need to understand more
about why these conflicts happened. He saw violence, conflict, processes of social change and the
goals of development as linked themes. His work, Making Peace, defines peace and conflict as a
set of peaceful and unpeaceful relationships; peacemaking, therefore, consists of making changes
to relationships so that they may be brought to a point where development can occur. Given his
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 9
academic background, it was natural that he should see peace broadly in terms of human
development, rather than as a set of “peace-enforcing” rules and organisations. For Curle, the
purpose of studying social structures was to identify those that enhanced rather than restrained, or
even suppressed, human potential.
Curle’s work is an illustration both of the applied nature of conflict resolution and of the
crucial link between academic theory and practice. In the Middle identifies four elements to his
mediation process, inspired by the values of his Quaker practice, his background in humanistic
psychology and his field experiences: first, the mediator acts to build, maintain and improve
communications; second, to provide information to and between the conflict parties; third, to
“befriend” the conflict parties; and fourth, to encourage what he refers to as “active mediation”
(i.e., to cultivate a willingness to engage in co-operative negotiation). He developed the concept of
“soft mediation”, which later became “Track 2 mediation”, or “citizens diplomacy”. (See Lesson
3.)
2.3.3 Elise Boulding: New voices in Conflict Resolution
Boulding trained as a sociologist and was involved in the early work of the Michigan
Centre, serving as Secretary General of the International Peace Research Association (IPRA) from
1964 and chair of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She was active in
the promotion of peace research and education through the United Nations system, including
projects with UNESCO, UNIDIR, UNITAR, and the United Nations University. She introduced
the idea of imaging the future – enabling people to break out of the defensive private shells into
which they retreated, often out of fear of what was happening in the public world, and
encouraging them to participate in peace and conflict resolution processes. The use of social
imagination was placed within the context of what she called the 200 year present, i.e., we must
understand that we live in a social space that reaches into the past and into the future.
She was also an early supporter of the idea of civil society – opening up new possibilities
for a global civic culture that is receptive to the voices of people and cultural communities who
are not part of the traditional discourses of nation-state politics. In doing so, Boulding anticipated
many of the preoccupations of conflict resolution participants today (e.g., local communities,
women). For Boulding, the next half of our “200 year present” (i.e., the next one hundred years
from the 1980s) contains within it the basis for a world civic culture and peaceful problem-solving
among nations, but also the possibility of Armageddon. The development of local and
international citizens” networks could be a way of ensuring that the former prevailed.
For Boulding, peace-making demands specific “craft and skills”, a peace praxis which
must be taught so that more and more people begin to deal with conflict from an integrative
standpoint. In the relationships that make up social and political life, as well as in the structures
and institutions within which they are embedded, the success with which these skills are
encouraged and operationalised will determine whether, in the end, we are “peace-makers” or
“war-makers”.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 10
2.4 Reconstructions: The 1990s
The 1990s offered Conflict Resolution increasingly unexpected opportunities to make
effective contributions to the resolution of contemporary deadly conflicts. With greater
opportunity, however, has come greater critical scrutiny; conflict resolution ideas are being tested
both at local and international levels. There are four linked areas where there has been innovative
constructive criticism, and where conflict resolution work is being adapted accordingly. (These
issues will be discussed at length in Lessons 8, 9, and 10.)
2.4.1 Peace Building From Below
In the 1990s there was a significant shift away from “top-down” Peace Building whereby
powerful outsiders act as experts, importing their own conceptions of conflict and conflict
resolution and ignoring local resources, in favour of a cluster of practices and principles referred
to collectively as Peace Building from below. The conflict resolution and development fields have
come together in this shared enterprise. John Paul Lederach, a scholar-practitioner with practical
experience in Central America and Africa, is one of the chief exponents of this approach.
2.4.2 Power, Participation and Transformation
A second area of constructive criticism is found at the interface between traditional conflict
resolution approaches and critical social theory. Vivienne Jabri’s work is an example. As both a
sociologist and conflict resolution specialist, she views violent conflict as a social product and looks
to structurationist theory, with its recognition of the mutual dependency of agency and structure, to
bridge the gap between the individualist and structuralist approaches. The danger of failing to
incorporate a critical-theoretical approach is that attempts at conflict resolution will simply reinforce
the unchallenged order that generated the conflict in the first place (including exclusion and
domination). The result is that we continually re-solve conflicts instead of developing a solution that
will not reappear again or re-solutions that did not work the first time. These criticisms have been
applied to the international community’s Peace Building efforts, as well as to international aid and
development work. The perspective here further emphasises the process of conflict transformation,
which refers to the longer-term and deeper structural, relational and cultural dimensions of conflict
resolution.
2.4.3 A Gendered Critique of Conflict Resolution
This lesson has shown how Conflict Resolution as an academic project was created and
institutionalised in a small number of centres, most of them set up by men who, consequently,
constitute a majority among the exemplars (although, today the gender proportions may well be
more equal). Number-counting is of less significance than the fact that women are usually the
silent victims of violent conflict, yet they are often the main creators of new modes of survival
and conflict resolution. The involvement of women in formal peace processes and negotiations
has been very limited; they are largely excluded from high-level negotiations despite their active
participation in local peace movements and peace-making initiatives. The exclusion of women
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 11
from the discourse about new political structures defined in peace agreements, and the political
process of negotiations determined at international level, may well be factors that perpetuate the
exclusionist and violent discourses and institutions which contribute to the conflict in the first
place.
2.4.4 The Culture Question
In the last decade, the question of whether the Conflict Resolution field constitutes a truly
global enterprise as its founders assumed, or whether it is based upon hidden cultural specifics
that are not universal, has also been raised. Anthropological studies have long demonstrated the
diversity of conflict expression and conflict resolution practice across cultures. This eventually led
to a major controversy in the 1980s in the form of an explicit critique of Burton’s universal human
needs theory by anthropologists Kevin Avruch and Peter Black (Center for Conflict Analysis,
George Mason University, USA). Others have also offered cultural perspectives in response to
the “Western” assumptions of the field, including John Paul Lederach.
The expansion in peacemaking, peacekeeping and Peace Building work in areas of conflict
in the 1990s, has propelled the culture question in Conflict Resolution to the top of the agenda.
The presence of thousands of military and civilian personnel from numerous countries in conflict
zones in all parts of the world, attempting to achieve common conflict resolution goals, has shown
up glaring cultural discontinuities. In many cases, there has been no doubt about the extent of
cultural ignorance and misunderstanding, or the inappropriateness of attempted conflict resolution
approaches.
3. The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping
3.1 Defining the Relationship
Following the end of the Cold War, peacekeeping has become central to the international
community’s response to many complex violent conflicts. It has taken on unfamiliar roles in
prevention (UNPREDEP in Macedonia), intervention in active war zones (UNOMIL in Liberia,
UNPROFOR in Bosnia, UNOSOM in Somalia), as well as post-settlement Peace Building
(ONUSAL in El Salvador, UNTAC in Cambodia, ONUMOZ in Mozambique). Consequently, it
has become more common for Conflict Resolution theorists to refer to peacekeeping as an
important instrument of positive conflict transformation. In this sense, peacekeepers (military and
civilian) are increasingly required to use psychological and communications strategies over the
use of military force. In the same way, one of the striking features of recent analyses by
practitioners of peacekeeping has been the frequency with which they refer to the relevance of
aspects of conflict resolution.
Although the end goals and objectives of peacekeeping may be defined as military
(controlling and ending violence, securing the environment), humanitarian (delivering emergency
relief), political (restoring legitimate government), and economic (assisting efforts for
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 12
1
British Army (1995), Wider Peacekeeping, Vol.5 of the British Army Field Manual,
London: HMSO; and Permanent Joint Headquarters, Peace Support Operations: Joint
Warfare Publication 3-50, London: HMSO
2
United States (1994), Field Manual 100-23: Peace Operations , Washington, DC:
Department of the Army.
development), peacekeeping on the ground is essentially comprised of conflict management and
communication activities. The original principles of peacekeeping (consent, impartiality,
minimum use of force, and legitimate conduct) can only be observed by a closer integration of the
communication and problem-solving strategies associated with conflict resolution into the
doctrine and practice of peacekeeping.
It is noticeable how much of the military peacekeeping doctrine is suffused with the
language of conflict resolution. This includes, for example, the peacekeeping doctrine of the
British Army, Wider Peacekeeping and its more recent doctrine for Peace Support Operations.
1

The same approach has been taken in the US doctrine covering peace support operations.
2
Here,
the management of consent (based on the principles of impartiality, legitimacy, mutual respect,
minimum force, credibility and transparency) is also related to the techniques of promoting good
communication, negotiation, mediation, and of positive approaches to community relations
through an active and well-funded civil affairs programme. These consent-promoting techniques
constitute the “soft” skills and processes of peacekeeping – as opposed to the “hard”, or technical
and military skills – designed to win hearts and minds.
3.2 Conflict Resolution’s Contribution to Peacekeeping
In every aspect of peacekeeping, conflict resolution concepts and techniques are now seen
to be of increasing importance. There are 10 broad areas in which the theory and practice of
conflict resolution may contribute to the effective practise of military and civilian peacekeepers in
conflict zones. These will be explored throughout the remainder of the course.
The first two are framework requirements for successful third party intervention.
3.2.1 Understanding the nature of the conflict environment: causes, dynamics, and conflict
mapping. (Lessons 2, 4, 5, 6 and 9)
Unless the nature and political intensity of the conflict arena is understood, outside
intervention will be ineffective, if not counter-productive. In addition, the cultural dynamics of the
conflict and its local population must be fully understood to avoid inappropriate and insensitive
intervention processes.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 13
3.2.2 Choosing appropriate intervention strategies: contingency and complementarity.
(Lessons 3 and 7)
Difficult choices must sometimes be made: (a) between coercion and positive inducement,
or (b) between advocacy and impartial mediation. An appropriate mix of mutually reinforcing
strategies and agencies needs to be brought together.
Numbers 3 to 6 concern relations between the intervenors (military or civilian) and the conflict
parties.
3.2.3 Managing relations with conflict parties: negotiating consent. (Lessons 3 and 7)
The negotiation of consent is a fundamental conflict resolution skill. Third parties must
understand the difference between impartiality, neutrality and relative disinterestedness, and how
all three are compromised in intense conflict situations. The aim is to build co-operation and trust.
3.2.4 Handling relations between conflict parties: developing micro-level mediation skills.
(Lesson 3)
There are numerous situations whereby peacekeepers are required to undertake formal or
informal mediation at the local level between conflict parties. Sensitivity to local conflict
management processes is important here.
3.2.5 Accommodating interests, values and needs: problem-solving at the local level. (Lessons
2 and 3)
Associated with 3.2.3 and 3.2.4, but worth citing as a separate skill, is the cluster of
techniques known as “problem-solving”. Awareness of the difference between positions, interests,
values and needs is helpful here. Skilled problem-solvers may help to convert potentially or
actually confrontational situations into a search for mutually satisfying outcomes.
3.2.6 Promoting reconciliation: healing relationships. (Lesson 8)
Although post-war reconciliation between individuals and communities is usually a long-
term project, military and civilian peacekeepers and humanitarian workers often have
opportunities to contribute to these processes in small but significant ways. An understanding of
the psychology of conflict and its relation to acts of reconciliation is invaluable here.
Underlying 3.2.3 to 3.2.6 is the principle that outside intervenors should, wherever
possible, work with and through local individuals, groups and institutions. Conflict resolution
should be elicitive rather than prescriptive.
Numbers 7 and 8 concern relations between intervenors and the levels of intervention.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 14
3.2.7 Facilitating co-operation between intervention agents: maximising comparative
advantage. (Lessons 7 and 8)
Some of the most frustrating problems in peacekeeping environments concern relations
between different types of intervenors, both internal and external. There are numerous relations
to be managed and negotiated here (e.g., interagency co-ordination, relations with local
communities). Acquaintance with conflict resolution approaches may be helpful.
3.2.8 Integrating intervention levels: operating effectively at the interface. (Lesson 7)
Peacekeepers work at the interface between “structural-political” and “cultural-
community” levels. This can prove problematic in times of tension when initiatives at one level
translate in unpredictable ways at another.
3.2.9 and 3.2.10 concern common features of conflict intervention of which third parties should
be aware and which require some skill in managing.
3.2.9 Handling the politics of power: integrating “hard” and “soft” power intervention
options at macro- and micro-levels. (Lessons 2, 3, 7 and 10)
Peacekeepers are regularly confronted by choices between “hard” (threat, coercion) and
“soft” (co-operative, integrative) power options. They need to be aware that their intervention
affects power relations in the conflict zone and that, whatever their view of the situation, conflict
parties will often interpret their actions as partisan (see 3.2.3 above).
3.2.10 Working in a multinational and multicultural environment: developing cultural
awareness skills. (Lesson 9)
The “culture question” is now recognised as an important issue for UN peacekeeping.
Peacekeepers need to develop awareness of the many ways in which cultural differences are
relevant, both between peacekeepers and in relations with the local population.
Behind each of these lies the fundamental fact that conflict zones are highly charged
arenas. Peacekeeping environments have their own internal political and cultural dynamics that
peacekeepers often ignore at their peril. In the concentrated atmosphere of protracted violent
conflict, peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel are often confronted by unwelcome and
intractable ethical dilemmas, including the question of whether the intervention itself is
improving or worsening the situation for those living in the conflict area.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 15
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 2, “Conflict Resolution: Foundations,
Constructions and Reconstructions”, pp.39-64; Chapter 5, “Creating Security Space:
Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution”, pp.141-5.)
Fetherston, A.B., O. Ramsbotham and T. Woodhouse (1994), “UNPROFOR: Some Observations
from a Conflict Resolution Perspective”, International Peacekeeping, 1(2): 170-203.
Ramsbotham, O. and T. Woodhouse (1999), Encyclopedia of International Peackeeping
Operations. Santa Barbara, California: ABC Clio Press.
Ryan, S. (1998), “The Theory of Conflict Resolution and the Practice of Peacekeeping”, in E.
Moxon-Browne (ed.), A Future for Peacekeeping?, Basingstoke: Macmillan, pp.26-39.
Woodhouse, T. (1998), “Peacekeeping and the Psychology of Conflict Resolution”, in H.
Langholtz (ed.), The Psychology of Peacekeeping, Westport, CT: Praeger, pp.153-66.
Woodhouse, T. and O. Ramsbotham (eds.) (2000), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution.
London: Frank Cass.
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 16
LESSON 1
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Prominent to the development of the field of Conflict Resolution during the inter-war years
was the early work of:
a. Burton, Richardson, and Galtung
b. Sorokin, Richardson, and Wright
c. Azar, Burton, and Sorokin
d. Galtung, Richardson, and Wright
2. The field of Conflict Resolution emerged at the same time as the basic principles of
peacekeeping were being defined.
a. True
b. False
3. Kenneth Boulding’s major contribution to Conflict Resolution was:
a. Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
b. Problem-Solving Workshops
c. Journal of Peace Research
d. Journal of Conflict Resolution
4. John Burton’s human needs theory is based on:
a. compromising needs through negotiation
b. satisfying basic human needs through problem-solving methods
c. enabling access to scarce resources
d. a set of peace-enforcement rules
5. The first two problem-solving workshops were designed to address the real conflicts between:
a. Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia
b. Greek and Turkish communities in Cyprus
c. Israel and Palestine
d. Catholic and Protestant communities in Northern Ireland
6. Herbert Kelman became the leading problem-solving scholar-practitioner, specialising in
which conflict:
a. Northern Ireland
b. India-Pakistan
c. Nigeria
d. Israel-Palestine
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 17
7. List the four elements of Adam Curle’s mediation process developed in In the Middle.
8. To encourage wider participation in peace and conflict resolution processes, Elise Boulding
developed the concept of:
a. active mediation
b. controlled communication
c. imaging the future
d. positive peace
9. Peace praxis refers to:
a. the skills to deal with conflict constructively
b. pacifist approaches to violence
c. campaigns against the development of nuclear weapons
d. the analysis of protracted social conflicts
10. List three areas in which the theory and practice of conflict resolution may contribute to the
practice of peacekeeping.
Answer Key: 1-b; 2-True; 3-d; 4-b; 5-a, b; 6-d; 7-build/improve communication, provide
information, befriend, encourage co-operation; 8-c; 9-a; 10-any three from the following:
understanding the nature of conflict; choosing appropriate intervention strategies; managing relations
with conflict parties through negotiation; developing mediation skills; developing problem-solving
skills; promoting reconciliation; facilitating co-operation, including interagency co-ordination;
integrating intervention levels; handling politics of power; developing cultural awareness skills
Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 18
Exercise: Reflecting on Experience
Objective: To allow the student to begin exploring conflict and conflict resolution
by reflecting on his/her own experiences in peacekeeping environments.
Method: On your own, or with another individual(s), think of a challenging
situation(s) that you have faced in the field, whether or not the situation(s) relates
to the 10 areas listed above.
Consideration/Discussion:
Did the situation involve other individuals or groups? If so, who?
What events led to the situation arising?
How did you behave in the situation?
Was your response appropriate or inappropriate, effective or ineffective?
What were your strengths and/or weaknesses in the situation?
How could the outcome have been improved if you had known more or responded
differently?
LESSON 2
THE NATURE OF CONFLICT
1. Introduction
2. Defining Conflict
3. Conflict Structure and Dynamics
4. Objective and Subjective Dimensions of Conflict
5. Positions, Interests, Needs, and Values
6. Power
Understanding the other side’s thinking is not simply a useful activity that will help you solve
your problem. Their thinking is the problem.
Whether you are making a deal or settling a dispute, differences are defined by the difference
between your thinking and theirs…
Ultimately, conflict lies not in objective reality, but in people’s heads…The difference itself
exists because it exists in their thinking.
Fears, even if ill-founded, are real fears and need to be dealt with. Hopes, even if unrealistic,
may cause a war. Facts, even if established, may do nothing to solve the problem…
As useful as looking for objective reality can be, it is ultimately the reality as each side sees it
that constitutes the problem in a negotiation and opens the way to a solution.
- Roger Fisher & William Ury, Getting to Yes
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 20
LESSON OBJECTIVES
In this lesson conflicts are defined as complex events with both positive and negative
qualities. It is shown how despite this complexity conflicts do have common characteristics. The
lesson also distinguishes between symmetric and asymmetric conflicts, and the differences
between the use of hard and soft power in conflicts. Definitions of conflict are illustrated by
reference to two brief case studies based on the Middle East and Northern Ireland.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Understand the positive, negative and neutral aspects of conflict;
Discuss the basic analytical terms and tools used to understand conflict;
Explain the objective and subjective dimensions of conflict;
Distinguish between positions, interests, needs and values and how they influence conflict
situations;
Define symmetric and asymmetric conflict;
Differentiate between hard and soft power
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 21
1. Introduction
1.1 What is Conflict?
Conflict is a very fluid and ambiguous concept. (See the exercise at the end of the Lesson.)
The word conflict usually has negative connotations: people often think that conflict is a
destructive and undesirable process to be avoided, contained and eliminated. In this sense, it is
perceived as the opposite of co-operation, harmony, or peace; yet, co-operation is not the opposite
of conflict, but a way of handling conflict. Conflict is much more complex; it is a multi-
dimensional social process which is a common and essential feature of human existence. When
expressed and handled constructively, conflict can act as a catalyst for personal, social and
political change and transformation. When it is expressed destructively, conflict fosters the
violence and damage that is familiar in wars and violent conflicts. (This is illustrated in Diagram
2-1, which has been developed by the London-based Conflict Resolution NGO, International
Alert.) Conflict Resolution therefore aims to provide the space and skills to manage conflict in
non-violent ways.
DIAGRAM 2-1
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 22
2. Defining Conflict
Conflict is experienced at all levels of human activity. Despite the diversity in level (from
interpersonal to international) and intensity (from minor disagreements to major armed and
violent wars), there are common insights and approaches to understanding the nature of conflict
and managing it peacefully.
In its simplest form, conflict refers to the pursuit of incompatible goals by individuals or
groups. In other words, conflict situations arise when individuals or groups identify a goal they
want to secure in order to satisfy material interests, needs or values. When these perceptions lead
to actions that come up against the interests, needs and values of others, a conflict dynamic
occurs. This definition suggests a broader span of time and a wider class of struggle than just
armed conflict. The use of such a broad definition allows for the consideration of any conflict,
whether it is interpersonal or international, whether it is pursued by peaceful means or by the use
of force.
Armed conflict is a narrower category, denoting conflicts whereby parties on both sides resort
to the use of force. It is difficult to define, as it includes situations ranging from a military over-
flight, an attack on a civilian by a single soldier, or an all-out war with massive casualties. Violent
conflict or deadly conflict is similar to armed conflict, but it also includes one-sided violence, for
example, genocide against unarmed civilians. It also encompasses the broader peace research
concept of violence that includes exploitative social relations that cause unnecessary suffering
(that is, structural violence). Contemporary conflict refers to the prevailing pattern of political
and violent conflicts in the post-Cold War world, while contemporary armed conflict refers to
those that involve the use of force.
3. Conflict Structure and Dynamics
Conflicts are complex processes. However, all conflict situations have certain basic
elements in common. One way of conceptualising the relationship between these elements is a
“conflict triangle” (illustrated in Diagram 2-2), with structures, attitudes, and behaviours at the
points. Galtung first proposed this model for understanding conflict.
DIAGRAM 2-2


Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 23
Structures refer to the political mechanisms, processes, and institutions that influence the
satisfaction of security, welfare, recognition and identity needs.
Attitudes include the parties’ perceptions and misperceptions of each other and of
themselves. These may be positive or negative, but in violent conflict parties tend to
develop increasingly negative stereotypes of the other and an increasingly positive self-
group identity. Attitudes are often influenced by emotions such as fear, anger, bitterness
and hatred.
Behaviours are actions undertaken by one party in conflict aimed at the opposing party
with the intention of making that party abandon or change its goals. It includes co-
operation and coercion, gestures signifying conciliation or hostility. Violent conflict
behaviour is characterised by threats, coercion and destructive attacks.
Conflict is a dynamic process in which structures, attitudes and behaviours are constantly
changing and influencing one another. A conflict emerges as parties’ interests come into conflict
or the relationship they are in becomes oppressive. Conflict parties then begin to develop hostile
attitudes and conflictual behaviour. The conflict formation starts to grow and develop. As it does
so, the conflict may widen (drawing in other parties), deepen (becoming more protracted and
possibly violent), and spread (generating secondary conflicts within the main parties or among
outsiders). This complicates the task of addressing the original, core conflict. Eventually,
resolving the conflict must involve a set of dynamic, interdependent changes that involve de-
escalation of conflict behaviour, change in attitudes, and transformation of relationships or
structures.
4. Objective and Subjective Views of Conflict
Conflicts consist of two dimensions: firstly, an inner ring of actual issues – the objective
dimension; secondly, an outer ring of emotions and psychological states – the subjective
dimension.
4.1 Objective Dimension
The objective aspects of conflict are those that are largely independent of the parties’
perceptions and are based on interests that are assumed to be in short supply. This includes: (1)
resources such as land, food water, commodities, weapons, and modern technology and (2)
resources such as societal positions, power, and recognition. Analysts who emphasise the
objective dimensions of conflict are said to have an “instrumental” view of the sources of conflict.
There are problems with focussing only on this dimension of conflict. By assuming that
conflict is caused mainly by resource scarcity, objectivists view the outcomes of conflict as a win-
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 24
lose situation, that is total victory, total defeat, or compromise, with power being an influential
factor.
4.2 Subjective Dimension
The subjective aspects of conflict are those that are psychologically and emotionally
rooted. They include fear, anger, anxiety, jealousy, mistrust, hostility and other negative feelings
that often cloud perception and inhibit rational communication. Conflict may have originally
been over objective interests but as time goes by these interests are perceived and valued
differently by the opposing parties. Values then are central to the subjective dimension;
subjectivists believe that values are not limited (as objectivists believe), and can increase in
supply as parties in conflict learn to co-operate with each other. For example, security increases
as each side perceives that its level of security has increased. Subjective approaches to conflict
resolution involve attempts to improve the ways in which parties understand and behave towards
each other. Analysts who emphasise the subjective dimensions of conflict are said to have an
“expressive” view of the sources of conflict.
However, even when values are increased, many conflicts still have some basic goal
incompatibility based on interests and resources. It is here that the subjective dimension is linked
to the objective dimension. Conflict is best understood when both levels of analysis are pursued
and when both are addressed in the resolution process. Real differences of interest may create
conflict, but once a conflict has started, the perceptions, beliefs and interaction of the parties are
crucial in determining its outcome.
4.3 Example: Northern Ireland
The conflict in Northern Ireland provides a clear example of how the subjective and
objective dimensions of a conflict situation interact. There is a core issue involving a scarce
resource (i.e., territory or, more precisely, the exclusive control of that territory) and two
communities with mutually exclusive preferred solutions to the territorial issue. The parties
define their separate identities with the oppositional labels of religion (Catholic/Protestant), which
embrace larger cultural divisions of history, heritage, and political tradition. Thus, at one level,
the root of the conflict lies in the objective political issues of territorial sovereignty. However, the
objective aspect of the conflict is embedded in layers of subjective considerations, including:
the history of the two communities as descendants of separated indigenous and settler cultures
in Ireland over several centuries;
the deep fault-lines of social, political and economic discrimination institutionalised between
approximately 1920 and 1970.
the polarising and alienating effects of the institutionalisation of violence as a part of the daily
norm since 1969.
This complex blend of elements has produced a society dominated by mutual opposition,
mistrust and fear that has made Northern Ireland one of Europe’s most intractable contemporary
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 25
conflicts. The process of negotiation and mediation that led to the 1998 Good Friday Agreement
between representatives of the two communities had to address both dimensions of the conflict.
5. Positions, Interests, Needs and Values
One of the classical approaches in conflict resolution is to distinguish between positions
(i.e., concrete demands held by each party, or one party’s solutions to an issue) and the underlying
interests (one party’s concerns about an issue) in conflict situations. Interests are often easier to
reconcile than positions because there are usually several positions that may satisfy them.
A simple example will illustrate these concepts. Two neighbours quarrel over a tree.
Each neighbour takes the position that the tree is on his/her land. No compromise is possible: the
tree cannot be sawn in half. However, it transpires that the interest of one neighbour is in using
the fruit of the tree, and the interest of the other is in using the shade of the tree. The positions
may be irreconcilable, but the interests are not.
The situation becomes more difficult if the conflict is over values (ideological beliefs),
which are often non-negotiable, or relationships, which may need to be changed to resolve the
conflict. (Although, the same principle of searching for a deeper level of compatible underlying
motives still applies.) Some analysts (for example, Burton) take this further by identifying basic
human needs (e.g., identity, security) that lie at the roots of other motives. Intractable conflicts are
seen to result from the denial of such needs; therefore, such conflicts can only be resolved when
these needs are satisfied. The premise is that interests may be subject to relative scarcity, yet basic
needs are not – they are unlimited (e.g., security for one party is reinforced by security for the
other). As long as the conflict is translated into the language of needs, an outcome that satisfies
both sides’ needs may be found.
5.1 Example: Camp David
In the Camp David negotiations between Menachem Begin of Israel and Anwar Sadat of
Egypt over the status of the Sinai Peninsula, each took the position that his country wanted
complete control of the land. On deeper investigation, they discovered that the Israelis’ primary
interest was in security, having fought a series of wars with their neighbours. The Egyptians’
interest was in sovereignty, having only recently achieved independence. This enabled the two
sides to come up with a solution that satisfied the interests and needs of each without impinging
on the other’s. The Sinai was given to the Egyptians (sovereignty), but was demilitarised
(security). By exploring a range of positions that satisfied the parties’ underlying needs, this
particular conflict was resolved.
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 26
6. Power
6.1 Symmetric and Asymmetric Conflict
Conflicts that occur between relatively similar parties (i.e., those who have equal power)
are referred to as symmetric conflicts. Conflicts that arise between dissimilar parties (e.g., between
a majority and a minority, or an established government and a group of rebels), are considered
asymmetric conflicts. In the latter, the root of the conflict lies not in particular issues or interests
that may divide the parties, but in the very structure of who they are and the relationship between
them. It may be that this structure cannot be changed without conflict.
Classical conflict resolution, in some views, applies only to symmetric conflicts. In
asymmetric conflicts the structure is such that the top-dog always wins, the under-dog always
loses. The only way to resolve the conflict is to change the structure, but this can never be in the
interests of the top-dog. In this sense, there are no win-win outcomes (see Lesson 3) and the third
party has to join forces with the under-dog to bring about a solution.
From another point of view, however, even asymmetric conflicts impose costs on both
parties. There are costs for the top-dogs in sustaining themselves in power and keeping the under-
dogs down. In severe asymmetric conflicts, the cost of the relationship often becomes unbearable
for both sides. This then opens the possibility for conflict resolution through a shift from the
existing structure of relationships to another.
The role of a third party is to assist with this transformation, confronting the top-dog if
necessary. This means transforming unpeaceful, unbalanced relationships into peaceful and
dynamic ones. There are ways in which this can be approached without using violent coercion,
including influencing and persuading the power-holders, mobilising popular movements,
increasing solidarity, making demonstrations of resolve, raising awareness of the conflict among
those who are external or internal supporters of the top-dog to weaken the regime. Because the
unequal power structure is unbalanced and upheld by various props, removing the props may
make the unbalanced structure collapse. Another tactic is to strengthen and empower the under-
dogs; the under-dogs may withdraw from the unbalanced relationship and start building anew.
Thus, non-violent approaches use “soft power” to move towards a more balanced relationship.
6.2 Hard and Soft Power
Hard power, or coercive power, refers to the power to command, order, or enforce co-
operation. Soft power, or persuasive power, means the power to induce, legitimise or inspire co-
operation. Hard power has always been important in violent conflict situations, however, soft power
may be more important in conflicts managed peacefully. Kenneth Boulding refers to the former as
threat power (“do what I want or I will do what you do not want”). He further distinguishes between
two forms of soft power: exchange power (“do what I want and I will do what you want”) and
integrative power, associated with persuasion and transformative long-term problem-solving
(“together, we can do something that is better for both of us”). Conflict resolvers try to shift emphasis
away from the use of threat power and towards the use of exchange and integrative power.
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 27
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 1, “Introduction to Conflict Resolution”, pp.5-22.)
Boulding, K. (1989), Three Faces of Power. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
Mitchell, C. (1981), The Structure of International Conflict. London: Macmillan.
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 28
LESSON 2
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Conflict is always a negative process.
a. True
b. False
2. Briefly define the concept of conflict.
3. List the three related elements of the conflict triangle.
4. An example of an objective dimension of conflict is:
a. land
b. hostility
c. anger
d. jealousy
5. An example of a subjective dimension of conflict is:
a. power
b. recognition
c. fear
d. weapons
6. Conflicts only have one dimension of conflict, that is, either an objective dimension or a
subjective dimension.
a. True
b. False
7. The positions that conflict parties hold refer to their:
a. fears
b. underlying issues
c. values
d. concrete demands
8. Conflicts over access to security are about:
a. values
b. needs
c. positions
d. interests
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 29
9. Conflict that arise between dissimilar parties and involve issues of power are:
a. protracted
b. objective
c. symmetric
d. asymmetric
10. What type of power is the most appropriate for conflict resolvers to use during their intervention
efforts?
a. hard power
b. threat power
c. integrative power
d. coercive power
Answer Key: 1-False; 2-the pursuit of incompatible goals; 3-structures, attitudes,
behaviours; 4-a; 5-c; 6-False; 7-d; 8-b; 9-d; 10-c
Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 30
1
Adapted from Mari Fitzduff (1992), Community Conflict Skills: A Handbook for Groupwork. Belfast:
Community Relations Council
Exercise: The Good, the Bad and the Neutral
1
Aim: To assist the student in understanding that conflict is an essential process in life, with
both desirable and undesirable consequences.
Method: Think of as many words as possible associated with the term CONFLICT. (“First
Thoughts” for 5-10 minutes.) Write them down on a piece of paper. Consider which of the
categories below each word falls under. Some words may fall under more than one
category.
The three categories are:
1. Words with a positive connotation (e.g., excitement, creativity, opportunity, richness).
2. Words with a negative connotation (e.g., death, aggression, destruction, hatred).
3. Words that are relatively neutral (e.g., tension, balance, inevitable).
Consideration/Discussion:
Did you list words from all three categories?
Did you list more words in any particular category? If so, why?
What would we lose in our lives if we did not have conflict?
LESSON 3
KEY CONCEPTS OF CONFLICT RESOLUTION
1. Introduction
2. Conflict Management, Settlement, Resolution and
Transformation
3. Win-Win Outcomes
4. Third Party Intervention
5. Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution
6. Conflict Resolution Training
[Peacekeeping] involves the psychological change from an adversary to a pacific role; from
confrontation to third party interposition. In peacekeeping there is no enemy: the objective is
to avoid hostilities, to improve communications between the parties, and to advance the
process of reconciliation. This necessitates a full understanding of the causes of the conflict
political, military and economic as well as the social and cultural environment. It demands a
fair-minded and impartial approach while operating within an atmosphere of distrust and
suspicion among the protagonists, often under difficult and provocative conditions.
- Canadian General Clayton Beattie
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 32
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson provides an account of key terms and concepts used to define the processes of
conflict resolution. Conflict resolution is distinguished from conflict management and conflict
settlement because it is concerned with addressing the fundamental causes of conflicts and aims to
produce solutions which are mutually acceptable to all conflict parties. Peacekeeping is considered
as a form of third party intervention designed to assist conflict resolution. Conflict resolution itself
operates at a number of levels or tracks, and encompasses a range of techniques from conciliation
to mediation, negotiation, and problem-solving, all of which are defined here. The role of conflict
resolution training to provide the necessary skills for these techniques is also discussed.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Differentiate between conflict management, conflict settlement, conflict resolution and
conflict transformation;
Distinguish between win-lose, lose-lose and win-win outcomes;
Describe the main concepts of third party intervention;
Discuss the techniques and approaches for resolving conflict;
Understand the key strategies for negotiation and mediation;
Consider how these conflict resolution techniques are relevant and useful to peacekeeping
situations in the field;
Apply some of the basic conflict resolution skills in their peacekeeping interactions and
activities.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 33
1. Introduction
The aim of conflict resolution is not the elimination of conflict. This would be both
impossible and sometimes undesirable (e.g., in the case of asymmetric conflicts where conflict
may be required to change the unbalanced power structures). Rather, the aim of conflict
resolution is to transform actual or potential violent conflict into peaceful (non-violent) processes
of social and political change. This requires a continuously evolving set of conceptual and
practical tools to deal with conflict as and when it arises.
2. Conflict Management, Settlement, Resolution and Transformation
Many terms are frequently, and almost interchangeably, used in the field of Conflict
Resolution to describe the activities and processes which bring conflict to an end. However,
several of these terminological approaches have implications for the outcome of a conflict
situation. Four significant approaches will be distinguished here.
2.1 Conflict Management
Conflict management, like the associated term “conflict regulation”, is often confusingly used as a
generic term to cover the entire spectrum of positive efforts to affect conflicts in non-violent
ways, including settlement and resolution. It is also used to refer to the limitation, mitigation and
containment of conflict, rather than the durable elimination of the causes of conflict.
2.2 Conflict Settlement
The settlement approach prescribes an outcome that is built on agreement reached by the
conflicting parties through negotiation and bargaining. A settlement, in this definition, suggests
agreement over the conflict issues, which involves compromise or concession from both sides.
Using this approach, neither side may be able to achieve all of their goals, but the initial
disappointment may be offset by the mutuality of the compromise. Formal negotiation and
political bargaining are examples of this approach.
This approach emphasises the objective, power-related issues of conflict. All parties
(including the third party) to the bargaining process approach the goal of settlement with their
own interests to be promoted or safeguarded and their own agendas to be addressed. Third parties
in settlement-type processes legitimately use pressure, inducements and/or threats (hard power
tactics) to compel the parties to agree to a compromise solution. The feelings of the parties are
secondary to the issues; their relationship is addressed only in so far as it is relevant to the
bargaining process.
Although a settlement is often the quickest solution to a difficult or violent situation, its
effectiveness is temporary because the underlying relationships and structures that have caused the
conflict are not addressed. In practice, conflicts that have reached settlements are often re-opened
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 34
later when feelings produce new issues or renewed dissatisfactions about old ones, or when the
third party's guarantee runs out.
2.3 Conflict Resolution
Conflict resolution is a more comprehensive approach based on mutual problem-sharing
between the conflict parties. The parties co-operate with each other to redefine their conflict and
their relationship. They solve the conflict themselves by jointly finding their own solution,
becoming their own guarantors of the agreement. Rather than compromising or bargaining away
their goals, they engage in a process of information-sharing, relationship-building, joint analysis
and co-operation. The role of the third party is one of facilitation without coercion or the use of
hard power persuasion.
This approach emphasises the subjective features of the conflict, particularly relationships
between parties. Resolution of conflict implies that the deep-rooted sources of conflict are
addressed, changing behaviours so they are no longer violent, attitudes so they are no longer
hostile, and structures so they are no longer exploitative. The term is used to refer both to the
process (or the intention) to bring about these changes, and to the completion of the process.
The process of conflict resolution includes becoming aware of a conflict, diagnosing its
nature and applying appropriate methods in order to:
diffuse the negative emotional energy involved;
enable the conflicting parties to understand and resolve their differences;
resolve the differences so as to achieve solutions that are not imposed, which have been
agreed by all the key parties, and which address the root cause of the conflict.
A resolution process is based on the needs of the primary parties to a particular conflict,
rather than on the interests or assumptions of the “resolvers”. This approach opposes traditional
notions of power politics. The primary objective of this approach is to achieve a “win-win
outcome”, in which long-lasting (even permanent) solutions to the conflict are sought. However,
while it is a fundamental means of dealing with conflict, resolution is difficult to achieve in
practice. This is because the conflicting parties (especially in long-standing and/or violent
conflict) are not open to the idea of close co-operation and because the practicalities of developing
such a broad and deep solution are immense. Also, objective issue-based disagreements may not
be resolved if positive relationships develop.
The main differences between the settlement and resolution approaches to conflict are
summarised in the Table 3-1.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 35
TABLE 3-1

SETTLEMENT
(COMPROMISE)


RESOLUTION
(CO-OPERATION)


FOCUS


Objective issues; short-term
Objective issues and subjective
perceptions; long-term

AIM


Remove conflict

Remove causes of conflict

THIRD
PARTY

Imposes solution; uses
power/coercion; underlying
needs not important
Does not use coercion; improves
communication; obtain win-win
solutions
2.3.1 Peacekeeping as Settlement and Resolution
The range of peacekeeping options has been recognised as the international community's
primary instrument of third party intervention and conflict management. Peacekeeping is in a
unique position because it is associated with both conflict management styles: it is both a
settlement and a resolution activity.
Traditional peacekeeping refers to the interposition of international armed forces to
separate the belligerents and monitor a cease-fire, while a political settlement to the conflict is
sought. This is associated with the conflict settlement approach. In Cyprus, for example,
peacekeepers' activities in UNFICYP have been mostly directed toward the maintenance of a
status quo situation. Similarly, while negotiations on partition took place in Geneva, the
humanitarian mission in Bosnia reflected a settlement strategy. Peace enforcement is a form of
imposed settlement by a powerful third party. In the case of Somalia, the peace-enforcement
operation (UNOSOM II) monitored a (temporary) cease-fire arrangement in order for other
peacekeeping activities to take place. However, it did not address the subjective issues of the
conflict, nor did it advance co-operative relations between the conflict parties.
Contemporary peacekeeping (or “peace support” as the US and UK militaries prefer to
use) involves the coordinated presence of military, police, and civilian personnel responsible for a
wider range of tasks such as humanitarian assistance, policing, human rights and electoral
monitoring, social and economic rehabilitation and reconstruction. This multidimensional form of
peacekeeping can be seen as a strategy that is more closely related to conflict resolution. For
example, in Namibia, UNTAG's information campaign associated with the elections and the wider
settlement process, and the work of the political offices in facilitating talks between rival political
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 36
parties demonstrates attempts to improve communication and understanding between groups and
to promote positive relationships. This kind of activity is associated with the resolution approach.
The difference between traditional and multidimensional peacekeeping with respect to
third party activities is a matter of degree. In multidimensional peacekeeping operations third
party roles associated with resolution strategies are taken on explicitly (through strategic planning
and by the very nature of the activities performed). In traditional peacekeeping, where the focus is
on settlement strategies (e.g., maintenance of cease-fires), such roles occur only by chance or
through individual initiative. The increased number of civilians participating in contemporary
peacekeeping operations also means that more resolution roles are taken on.
2.4 Conflict Transformation
In recent years, some analysts have used the term “conflict transformation” to refer to the
longer-term and deeper structural, relational and cultural dimensions of conflict resolution. The
contention is that “resolution” carries the connotation of bringing conflict to permanent
conclusion, negating the possible social value of positively channeled conflict. Thus, while we use
conflict resolution as a comprehensive term to encompass the variety of approaches and methods
used to handle conflict non-violently at all levels in society, we use conflict transformation as a
developmental term to indicate the deepest level of change in the conflict resolution process.
As a descriptive and theoretical perspective, conflict transformation can yield rich insights,
particularly with respect to asymmetric and protracted conflicts. It focuses on the dynamic
processes through which conflict becomes violent, rather than focusing narrowly on how to bring
a violent conflict to a cease-fire or settlement. An emphasis on the transformative aspects of
conflict helps us to understand the changes that occur in individuals, relationships, cultures and
nations as a result of the experiences of violent conflict.
Transformation is also used to refer to a specific approach to violent conflict that focuses
on the changes needed at many different levels of society in order to create long-term peace. This
approach aims to transform a conflict from one of violence and destruction into a constructive
force which produces change, progressively removing or reducing the social and structural
conditions from which the conflict and violence have arisen. The peace that emerges will be
deeply rooted and sustainable.
Conflict transformation includes the process of Peace Building, which underpins the work
of peacemaking and peacekeeping by addressing structural issues and the long-term relationships
between conflictants. On the cultural level, transformation is linked to the idea of “Peace
Building-from-below” (see Lesson 8), which seeks to identify, promote and build on the resources
and mechanisms within a given cultural setting for dealing with conflict.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 37
3. Win-Win Outcomes
Parties to conflicts frequently see their interests as diametrically opposed. The possible
outcomes are seen to be zero-sum or win-lose (one's gain is the other's loss), or compromise (the
parties split their difference). However, there is a much more common outcome in violent
conflicts: negative nonzero-sum (less-than-zero-sum), or both parties lose. If neither party is able
to impose an outcome or is prepared to compromise, the parties may impose such massive costs
on each other that all of the conflictants end worse off than they would have been had another
strategy been adopted. When this becomes clear to the parties often regrettably late there is a
strong motive based on self-interest for moving towards other outcomes, such as compromise or
win-win.
The task of conflict resolution is to assist parties who perceive their situation as zero-sum
to re-perceive it as a nonzero-sum situation, in which both parties may lose or win. The aim is to
move the parties from a negative nonzero-sum perspective towards a positive nonzero-sum
(greater-than-zero sum), or win-win, outcome in which both parties gain from the conflict
situation.
DIAGRAM 3-1
Possible Outcomes of Conflict
Win-Win
Power/ Creative
Authority Conflict Resolution
Competition Co-operation
Confrontation Rules Determine
Winners/Losers
Win-Lose
Taking account of the future relationship is one way out of the trap of win-lose thinking.
At the deepest level, treating conflicts between parties with long-term relationships (e.g., family
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 38
members, communities, or neighbouring states) as win-lose situations is problematic: if conflicts
are “resolved” at the expense of one of the parties, the issues are likely to resurface, creating
further conflict. In complex conflict situations, the parties will typically have different values or
opinions regarding the relative importance of each issue, predictions about future gains, the
importance of symbolic acts and so forth. These differences can be leveraged so that the solution
has a high relative value for each party, while minimising painful compromises or trade-offs. For
conflict settlements to be durable, they must have integrative, win-win outcomes so that the
interests and needs of the individuals or groups in conflict are recognised and mutually satisfied.
4. Third Party Intervention
Where two parties to a conflict are reacting to another's actions, it is easy for a spiral of
hostility and escalation to develop. Third party intervention occurs when an impartial party an
individual, institution or nation who is not identified directly or indirectly with any of the parties
or interests to the conflict intentionally enters the conflict situation with the objective of
breaking into this conflict spiral to regulate or end its destructive course. The entry of a third
party changes the conflict structure and allows for a different pattern of communication to
develop. The third party is able to reflect back the messages, attitudes and behaviours of the
conflictants, with the aim of producing a co-operative environment for constructive conflict
resolution and win-win outcomes.
A third party has no stake or immediate interest in the conflict into which it intervenes.
However, while third party intervention can be non-coercive or non-binding, using soft power
tactics. It can also be coercive or binding, using hard power tactics. The former has been
described as an intermediary, with no power to coerce; the latter has been referred to as an
intervenor, with some power to coerce.
There are several essential features of or conditions for effective non-coercive third party
intervention:
1. Because it is non-coercive and voluntary; the conflict parties must be willing to enter into
some form of negotiation or dialogue.
2. There must be a forum available that is agreeable to the parties involved (i.e., the right
place with the right conditions).
3. The third party must be credible (i.e., the third party must have legitimate standing with
the parties to allow him/her to assist in the conflict).
4. The process is impartial: it sees the conflicting demands of the parties from an impartial
position. (It is not impartial in the sense that a third party whether an individual, a
non-governmental agency, or a peacekeeping mission does have particular values and
goals which are the basis for its work.)
5. It attempts resolution (although this does not exclude attempts at settlement).
6. It changes the dynamics of the conflict situation.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 39
4.1 Peacekeeping as a Form of Third Party Intervention
Peacekeeping, itself, is an instrument of third party intervention at both the macro- and
micro-levels of conflict intervention. At the macro-level, peacekeeping is part of a broadly
constituted conflict resolution process: it aims to prevent, contain, resolve or transform conflict
through the use of an internationally organised and directed third party (comprised of military,
police and civilian personnel). At the micro-level, both military and civilian personnel act as third
parties on the ground in a mission: they seek to reduce violence by segregating the conflict parties,
then they work to restore trust, confidence and communication.
4.2 Third Party Roles
There are several different third party roles available. Different roles may be required for
different levels of conflict, or depending on the nature and relative power of the conflict parties.
They are illustrated in Diagram 3-2.
Roles for Conflict Settlement
The conciliator provides a communication channel between the parties and brings the
parties together for negotiation, particularly in situations where the parties are unable,
unwilling or unprepared to meet. The conciliator may: (a) facilitate exchange, (b) suggest
possible solutions, and (c) assist the parties in reaching an agreement. A third party can
enter into negotiations with one or all of the parties to a conflict. Peacekeepers are often
involved in this activity at the micro-level, for example, when negotiating with a particular
party over an issue like freedom of movement. Conciliation can also help redress the
power imbalance between parties.
The enforcer (including arbitrators, judges, police, and peace enforcers) has formal power
to sanction either or all of the parties. The enforcer coerces parties to focus on objective or
resource-based issues and to achieve a compromise.
Roles for Conflict Resolution
The most widely used form of third party is the mediator. The mediator is expected to be
an outsider, someone who is impartial (although this is currently a matter of cultural
debate), and who does not have the formal power to sanction the parties. The parties to the
conflict allow the mediator into the conflict to help facilitate the negotiation process. The
mediator may bring the parties together or shuttle between the parties (a “go-between”) to
assist them in reaching mutually satisfactory outcomes.
The facilitator assists the parties in moving toward problem-solving processes and creative
resolution of the conflict. A team of facilitators brings representatives of the parties
together in a neutral environment and works with them to improve communication,
identify underlying relationship issues, build trust and search for integrative outcomes. At
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 40
the same time, the team establishes a framework that will enable the conflict parties to
deal with problems in the future in a positive non-destructive way.
DIAGRAM 3-2
4.3 Track 1, Track 2, and Track 3 Interventions
Third party intervention involves different kinds of agencies (international organisations,
state governments, non-government organisations, and official and unofficial individuals);
addresses different groups (state governments, party leaders and elites, local leaders and
organisations); and varies in form, duration and purpose. These differences can be conceptualised
as Track 1, Track 2, Track 3 and Multi-track intervention.
Track 1 intervention involves official governmental or inter-governmental representatives
(e.g., from the UN, international and regional organisations or international financial institutions)
working with the top leaders and other elite parties (e.g., warlords, faction leaders) from the
conflict. They may use negotiation, good offices, mediation, peacekeeping and “carrots and
sticks” (hard power tactics) to seek or force an outcome, often along the win-lose or bargaining
line.
Track 2 intervention, in contrast, involves unofficial intervenors who do not have the
“carrots and sticks”. As powerless and non-coercive third parties, they work with the parties to
facilitate agreements, to encourage the parties to see their situation along the lose-lose or win-win
lines, and to find mutually satisfactory outcomes. They include international non-government
organisations, religious organisations, private businesses, and academics working with
middle-level leaders.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 41
There has been a shift from seeing third party intervention as the responsibility of external
individuals and agencies towards accepting the important role of internal third parties.
Peacemaking activities by local individuals and agencies are known as Track 3 interventions.
Instead of outsiders addressing conflicts through short-term efforts, the emphasis is on building
capacity within societies to manage conflict long-term. This means supporting local peace
constituencies, resources and actors, developing local institutions, and employing the socially and
culturally appropriate approaches to resolving conflict in a given setting (see Lessons 8 and 9).
Table 3-2 compares the three tracks.
TABLE 3-2
TRACK 1 TRACK 2 TRACK 3
THIRD PARTIES
UN, regional
organisations (e.g.,
OAU, OSCE, OAS),
international financial
institutions (e.g.,
World Bank)
International NGOs,
religious bodies (e.g.,
Quakers, churches),
multi-religious
bodies, private
businesses,
academics
Local leaders,
respected community
elders, community
organisations
CONFLICT
PARTIES
Key political or
military leaders,
elites, warlords,
faction leaders
Middle-level leaders
from country’s
business, religious,
education and other
communities
Local leaders and
groups
TECHNIQUES
Negotiation, peace-
keeping, mediation
with muscle
Good offices,
conciliation, pure
mediation, problem-
solving
Creation of local
peace constituencies,
building social
cohesion
POWER Exchange and threat Integrative and
exchange
Integrative and
exchange
Multi-track intervention refers to a complementary range of third party interventions. By
integrating Track 1, Track 2 and Track 3 third party interventions, and addressing top-level elites
and local grassroots simultaneously (i.e., operating at the structural-constitutional and
relational-community levels), there is more likely to be a sustained commitment to transforming
the conflict in question. Diagram 3-3 illustrates the multi-track approach.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 42
DIAGRAM 3-3
5. Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution
There are a variety of techniques employed within the field of Conflict Resolution to
manage and resolve conflict at all levels of social interaction. Possible activities for third parties
include: mediation, negotiation, conciliation, facilitation, arbitration, adjudication, consultation,
good offices, and enquiry/fact-finding. In practice, the most appropriate ways to approach a
particular conflict will vary according to the level on which it occurs, the parties' personalities, the
power or resources the parties possesses, their perspectives on the future, the strength of the
parties' feelings, and the complexity of the conflict. This section examines the most important
techniques available to peacekeeping actors.
5.1 Conciliation
Conciliation refers to non-coercive intermediary efforts to encourage the parties to move
towards negotiations. The main aims of conciliation are to help identify the major issues of
contention, to lower tensions between parties and to move the parties closer to direct interaction.
Conciliation represents the first occasion that parties to the conflict require the intervention of a
third party. It also refers to the more minimalist role of providing good offices which enable
conflict parties to get together to recognise each other's interests and needs. The Quaker model of
mediating between warring parties is a clear example of conciliation (for example, the work of
Adam Curle in the Nigerian conflict of 1967-70). The most prominent provider of good offices is
the United Nations Secretary General. Conciliation involves a pacification process and gentle
persuasion which aims to restore communication so that negotiation, mediation or consultation
can take place.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 43
2
R. Fisher and W. Ury (with B. Patton) (1981), Getting to Yes. London: Hutchinson.
5.2 Negotiation
Negotiation is a general term for the process that provides the conflict parties with an
opportunity to directly exchange information and commitments through which they will resolve
their perceived difference of interests. It may make use of a third party who conducts the
proceedings, or who acts as a central feature of the negotiation process, or who may assist in
deadlock-breaking. Negotiation occurs on both formal (e.g., between trade representatives,
between diplomats) and informal levels (e.g., between colleagues, friends, and family members).
The latter suggests processes through which everyday decisions are made.
Negotiation is based on a search for options. There are four major obstacles that inhibit
this search: (1) premature judgement; (2) searching for a single answer; (3) assumption of a fixed
pie; and (4) thinking that solving the problem is the other's problem. Shared interests lie latent in
every negotiation (e.g., superordinate goals, opportunities in the future for co-operation and
mutual benefit). The concept of principled negotiation
2
(developed by the Harvard Negotiation
Project, see Lesson 1), suggests that effective negotiations should:
Produce agreements that satisfy the legitimate interests of all parties directly involved;
Be efficient;
Improve the relationship between the parties.
Principled negotiation is based on four basic tenets:
Separate the people from the problem (the conflict is not one of personalities);
Focus on interests, not on positions;
Invent creative options for mutual gain (i.e., move away from compromised towards
integrative agreements);
Use objective criteria, which applies to both parties, for evaluation.
Although negotiations focus on issues, their success depends on people. Trust is therefore
the key. Conflict parties will not exchange information and promises with parties they do not
trust. Increased trust generates communication and dialogue; it enhances relationships. Another
important element of negotiation is flexibility: the process needs to be flexible enough to cope
with unforeseen circumstances. During the negotiation process, goals and targets may change, and
the basic parameters of the process may need to be adapted.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 44
Guidelines for Negotiation
All parties must make realistic offers to start the process in motion; if there is no
movement on any sides, all sides lose.
If only one party is prepared to move, it may become a win-lose situation.
If one party moves too much without reciprocation, there may be nothing left to bargain
with.
If all sides are prepared to move, there may be a basis for an agreement – a compromise,
with both parties winning.
There are several stages in a negotiating process:
Stage 1: Preparation
Conduct a fact-finding mission to establish who is involved and what the main issues are.
Identify other individuals of influence (e.g., senior commander, local leader) who could
be crucial in solving the problem.
Ensure that all parties are willing to engage in the negotiation process.
Establish effective communication with all parties involved.
Clarify what all parties want and how they intend to achieve their goals.
Establish the venue. Find a neutral site acceptable, accessible, and secure for all sides, as
well as a setting that is culturally appropriate.
Agree on the basic rules and procedures and decide on the timeframes.
Consider the assistance of a third party.
Stage 2: Discussions
Each party states their position, interests, and needs, as well as concerns or fears.
At this stage, be problem-oriented rather than solution-oriented.
Spend time establishing what the problem is.
Focus on the underlying interests.
Stage 3: Generating Proposals
Table all proposals.
Stage 4: Bargaining
Work through each proposal. What is acceptable to all parties? What is not acceptable?
Work with the other parties to identify common ground on which to build meaningful
dialogue.
Seek opportunities to develop options for mutual gain.
If full agreement is not possible, seek partial agreement or areas of consensus.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 45
Stage 5: Reaching an Agreement
Summarise what has taken place and what has been agreed.
If desirable and appropriate, record all accomplishments, agreements and disagreements
for future reference.
If necessary, decide a time and place for further negotiation or follow-up.
In order to negotiate effectively, each conflict party needs to:
Develop a supportive climate for discussions to take place.
State the facts as they see them.
Express their feelings.
Establish what their targets are. (What is the maximum to go for? What is the minimum
to accept? What is their ideal solution? What would be a realistic solution?)
Understand and abide by some basic rules.
Listen to the other parties. (What are their positions and underlying issues?)
Be willing to understand.
Be prepared to consider new information and ideas.
Be attuned to cultural differences (e.g., cultural approaches to negotiation, understanding
of the issues, verbal and non-verbal behaviour).
Give up what is easy for them in return for what is of value.
Promote confidence-building and be prepared to trust the others involved.
Move away from the past (it cannot be changed) and consider the opportunities to
influence the future.
Be committed to finding and keeping any agreement.
5.3 Mediation
An extension of the negotiation process is mediation, which also occurs on many
different levels, from interpersonal to international. Mediation involves the intervention of a third
party, who may be more effective in getting the conflict parties to re-examine their positions,
interests and needs. It is a voluntary process in which the parties retain control over the outcome
and the mediator merely acts as an impartial facilitator of the process of communication. The
mediator, unlike a judge or arbitrator, has no power outside the mediation situation and cannot
make or impose binding decisions. The mediator's role is to facilitate direct negotiation on the
substantive issues, with the aim of producing a lasting settlement. This is soft mediation or “pure
mediation”, which is most often associated with unofficial mediation (Track 2). The mediator is
concerned with all parties, including other third parties, and the relationship between them.
Building on pure mediation, power mediation (or “mediation with muscle”) employs a
powerful third party who uses incentives and punishments (“carrots and sticks”) to persuade the
parties to yield inflexible positions and move towards agreement. Movement is based on the
power relations between the mediator and each party, rather than on the inter-party relationship.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 46
3
A. Curle (1986), In the Middle: Non-Official Mediation in Violent Situations. Oxford: Berg.
This form of mediation is often associated with official mediation (Track 1). What mediators can
do in their efforts to resolve conflict depend on who they are and the resources they bring, as well
as who the parties are, the context and stakes of the conflict, and the nature of their interaction.
For example, in the Canadian sector in Croatia, civil projects such s rebuilding roads, restoring
electrical power, and providing emergency medical treatment and medical evacuation have been
used as incentives to gain co-operation from local civilian and military authorities.
A Model for Mediation

According to Curle's model of mediation
3
, there are four elements of good practice. Mediators
should aim to:
Provide information on the facts so that conflict parties are not misled by rumour,
prejudice, or misunderstanding
Build, maintain and improve communications between the mediators and the protagonists
to the conflict;
Befriend, referring to the relationship between mediators and those with whom they are
dealing with.
Engage in active mediation: mediators help the conflict parties to see possibilities for a
solution that they might not otherwise have perceived.
Before engaging in face-to-face negotiation, mediators should move from one conflict party to
the other in an effort to see if there is common ground for a meeting. In the shuttle mediation,
mediators should try to:
Find out about the situation. What are the issues? Who is involved? What is the
background/history of the issue(s)? What are the cultural issues?
Explain what mediation is about and create a sympathetic and supportive environment.
Develop rapport and trust with all parties.
Convey an understanding of and respect for each party.
Summarise concisely the essence of each party's positions, interests and needs.
Encourage the conflict parties to agree to a meeting to work out their differences.
Explore the initial ideas of what each party wants.
Identify areas of common interest and possible compromise.
If the shuttle is successful, the mediator can move to the face-to-face mediation session. There
are four main stages that the mediation process should go through. However, remember that one
of the keys to conflict resolution is flexibility; therefore, adapt the process as required for the
particular context and circumstances (especially, cultural).
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 47
Stage 1: Introducing the Mediation Process
Welcome the parties and thank them for coming.
Clarify the roles (mediators' and participants').
Establish ground rules (e.g., no interrupting).
Describe the process.
Stage 2: Identifying Issues
Request an opening statement from each party; summarise to check for accuracy.
Assist parties to identify the core issues and concerns.
Get an agreement that these (as well as any others) are the key issues.
Engage the parties in setting the agenda (i.e., which issues to deal with first).
Summarise the parties' perspectives (issues, positions, interests, needs, concerns, goals),
noting areas of consensus and disagreement.

Stage 3: Problem-Solving Exchange
Ensure that each party understands what the other has said and how the other feels; clarify
and ensure understanding of any new information shared.
Develop areas of potential movement.
Apply “win-win” negotiating principles by encouraging the discussion of both parties'
interests and concerns and seeking multiple options for solving the problems of both
parties.
Encourage a move toward resolution.
Stage 4: Building Agreement
Invite the parties to make proposals and encourage them to generate a range of options.
Assist in the evaluation of the options.
Encourage problem-solving and guide them towards an agreement that incorporates the
needs of both parties.
Clarify each area of agreement and set it to one side.
If a comprehensive agreement is not possible, determine whether a partial agreement can
be reached.
Encourage the parties to agree on a course of action and to discuss what to do if problems
re-emerge.
If appropriate and desirable, a written memorandum of consensus can be signed by each
party.
Arrange a follow-up. Resolutions should be implemented and monitored as soon as
possible.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 48
5.4 Problem-Solving
Facilitated problem-solving (or third party consultation) is an unofficial third-party
intervention technique in which conflict parties are invited to participate in jointly analysing their
conflict. Participants are influential, but non-official, figures from the conflict communities.
The goal is to reconceptualise their relationships and situation in order to find creative, win-win
outcomes. Problem-solving usually takes place in an informal, low-risk, non-commital, neutral
and confidential workshop format facilitated by a skilled and impartial team of
scholar-practitioners who organise and manage the discussions. The third party functions
include: inducing positive motivation, improving communication, diagnosing the conflict, and
regulating the interaction.
The method is based on social-psychological assumptions about international conflict.
That is, conflict is a mix of objective interests and subjective factors and both need to be
addressed by the process. The objective ranges from education (i.e., increased understanding,
changed perceptions and improved attitudes), to shared understandings about the sources and
nature of the conflict, to improved relationships between the conflict parties, to the generation of
creative solutions (or a combination of these aspects). Although problem-solving focuses on
changing individuals attitudes and behaviour, it recognises that these changes must be transferred
and integrated into policy formulation and decision-making at the political level for conflict to be
influenced. The more influential and representative the individual participants in the workshops
are, the greater the potential impact on the political process. The meetings are seen to contribute
to the official-level negotiations, rather than to substitute them.
6. Conflict Resolution Training
Co-operative conflict resolution depends upon a certain set of skills. Training is the most
important way to develop or improve the skills, including communication, negotiation, mediation
and problem-solving, that will be useful for managing and resolving conflict constructively. The
primary aim of training is education: to learn and apply new skills and knowledge.
Conflict resolution training has been increasingly offered to diplomats and other official
actors, military and civilian peacekeepers, and non-governmental personnel. It can help
peacekeeping participants to become more effective third parties in the field by offering a safe
environment to learn and to practice new skills. It also allows time for reflection on the
application of the newly acquired skills and concepts.
For participants who are members of a community engaged in conflict, training becomes
an intervention in itself. Training assists participants to understand the conflict dynamics, and it
provides options for dealing with the conflict changing destructive processes or preventing
further damaging conflict from arising. It can also help participants to view the conflict from
another perspective, i.e., the “other's perspective”, including the other's interests and needs.
Training can be an empowering process for individuals and groups affected by violent conflict.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 49
The most effective training uses: (1) interactive learning approaches (e.g., participatory
methods including small group discussions and exercises, case study analyses, role-plays and
simulations); and (2) elicitive approaches (i.e., drawing upon the participants' own experiences
and perspectives in order to relate the new material to the skills and knowledge they already have,
or creating training programmes from the knowledge and resources available within the group).
6.1 Core Skills for Conflict Resolvers
The skills of conflict resolution are transferable skills and can be adapted and cultivated as
a foundation for use in a variety of contexts, including:
in the general interaction of family and friendship groups (interpersonally);
in various professions and organisations where the positive management of human
relationships has a high priority;
in culturally divided societies and by agencies (humanitarian/peacekeeping) working to
alleviate the effects of violence in such societies when division has escalated to hostility;
internationally, across cultures and between states to enable a greater degree of global
awareness of the potential of conflict resolution to deal with differences through official or
unofficial channels.
As third parties in peacekeeping environments, military and civilian actors will frequently
find themselves in situations within and between their own agencies and between themselves and
local populations that require effective negotiation and/or mediation strategies. For example,
you may be negotiating for rights of passage or use of facilities, buildings, and other services;
negotiating with local leaders to determine how to equitably distribute relief supplies; mediating
between hostile clans; or negotiating with other peacekeeping agencies. For peacekeeping actors,
there is a basic set of skills involved in the constructive resolution of conflict, which can be
acquired through training and developed through ongoing practice:
those related to establishing an effective working relationship with others (conflict parties
as well as other individuals and groups the participant may come into contact with, e.g.,
peacekeepers, humanitarian personnel), including trust, credibility and communication;
those related to establishing a co-operative, problem-solving attitude among the conflict
parties;
those related to establishing creative group processes and group decision-making
strategies;
those related to developing substantive knowledge of the issues around the conflict,
including the history and cultural dimensions.
6.1.1 Conflict Styles
To learn the skills associated with the various conflict resolution techniques, the first step
is to understand how one behaves in conflict situations. Different people use different strategies
for managing conflict. The style one chooses to use in a conflict should be situational (including
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 50
how important personal goals are, how important the relationship is). It is possible, however, to
identify a primary personal mode of dealing with conflict, developed over time through
experiences (particularly cultural ones). Just as conflict management styles are learned, they can
be changed by learning new and more effective ways. Self-reflection is, therefore, an on-going
task for conflict resolvers. The second step is, of course, understanding and respecting the styles
of others, which may be very different from one's own.
Exercise: Evaluating Personal Conflict Management Styles
Aims:
To allow the student to think about his/her own conflict behaviour and identify common
patterns;
To consider the importance of conflict management styles for negotiators and mediators.
Method: On your own or with a partner, think about how you usually respond to conflict,
including the strategies you may adopt to manage and resolve conflict.
Consideration/Discussion:
What is your style? For example, do you tend to avoid conflict in order to preserve
relationships, withdraw from conflict, confront the issues/parties, compete over the issues
to “win” the conflict, dominate the other parties, compromise on the issues to achieve
some goals, problem-solve? Or, is your style a mixture?
If your style is a mixture, under what circumstances might you use one style or another?
What are the advantages/disadvantages of your style?
What happens when you use your style in situations where the other parties have very
different styles?
How does your style compare to the characteristics of good mediation/negotiation
practise?
How can you improve your style?
6.1.2 Communication Skills
The most important skill for acting constructively in conflict situations is effective
communication. Communication is the exchange of meaning the giving and receiving of
feelings, opinions, ideas or beliefs through verbal and non-verbal means. It is the route to
understanding and reaching agreement; it can prevent unnecessary conflict from arising; and it can
prevent an existing conflict from escalating. Once communication is improved both the objective
and subjective dimensions of conflict are easier to deal with. (Note that most communication
takes place within cultural contexts, therefore it is important to consider the cultural
communication patterns and rules.)
The communication skills that are important for conflict resolution are divided into two
groups: verbal and non-verbal.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 51
VERBAL NON-VERBAL
Active Listening Body Posture
Empathy Gestures (e.g., head nodding)
Questioning Styles Eye Contact
Reflection Physical Space
Re-phrasing Touch
Explaining Presence of Others
Summarising Attentive (Interested) Silence
Of these, the most important is active listening (also referred to as reflective or deep listening),
which includes many of the other elements of good communication. It is an essential skill for any
negotiation or mediation process. Active listening:
is much more than “passive” listening;
means listening to the whole person, to both the verbal and non-verbal cues;
gives the speaker time, space and confidence to express his/her thoughts, feelings and
experiences;
allows the listener to fully hear and understand, and then letting the other know that he or
she is being heard and understood;
diffuses tension and anger, creates trust, and opens up new possibilities.
The active listener should:
Listen for the content of what is being said. (What are the main points or ideas?)
Listen for feelings and emotions and acknowledge those that you recognise. (What are the
fears and concerns expressed by the speaker?)
Encourage the speaker to continue and to explain in some detail, using “open questions”
(e.g. Could you tell me more about it ?, How was that for you ?), rather than “closed
questions” (e.g. When did it happen ? Where did you hear that ?).
Direct attention outward towards the speaker, whilst being inwardly receptive.
Display empathy and openness empower the speaker by being fully present; practice
“unconditional positive regard”: do not let prejudices and stereotypes influence your
listening and do not filter what you hear to fit in with your worldview (cultural
assumptions).
At appropriate times, summarise in your own words what the speaker has said, including
both factual content and feelings expressed by the speaker.
Reframe hostile communication to find a new way of looking at the situation, to see it
through new lenses.
Be patient with the speaker; move into their domain, do not expect them to move into
yours; use similar language, verbal and non-verbal.
Do not fiddle with objects like pens and paper; display open, attentive non-verbal
behaviour (e.g., arms and legs are not tightly crossed).
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 52
Active Listening Skills
Encouraging: “Tell us some more”, “Could you explain what happened?”
Acknowledging: Verbal: “I understand”, “I see”, “OK”, “That sounds important to you”;
Nonverbal: nodding, eye contact, open body language
Checking: “Am I right in thinking you said”, “You seem to be angry about”
Clarification: “I am not sure I understand”, “Did you say”
Empathy: “We can understand why you are worried by this”, “I think this situation has
been very difficult for you”
Reflecting: “You are upset? What particularly is upsetting you?”
Summarising: “There seems to be several important issues here”
Exercise: Bad and Good Listening
Aims:
To experience what it is like not to be listened to;
To practice active listening and to experience what it is like to be fully listened to and
understood.
Method: Find someone to work with (or try elements of this exercise the next time you are
engaged in a discussion with someone). Think of a topic (e.g., your concerns about working in
areas of conflict) and talk about it for a few minutes. The listener must do all that s/he can not to
listen to you (i.e., to be a bad listener), using both verbal and non-verbal cues. Next, reverse the
roles: you are now the bad listener. Switch the roles again; this time the listener must do all s/he
can to actively listen, using both verbal and non-verbal means. Switch the roles again, so that
you become the active listener.
Consideration/Discussion:
How did it feel not to be listened to? What did it feel like not to listen to somebody?
What verbal and non-verbal means were used not to listen?
How did it feel (as a speaker) to be really listened to? What did it feel like to fully and
actively listen to someone? What verbal and non-verbal means were used to show that
you were listening?
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 53
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 1, "Introduction to Conflict Resolution", pp.5-22;
Chapter 6, "Mediation and Third Party Intervention", pp.158-162)
Harris, P. and B. Reilly (eds.) (1998), Democracy and Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for
Negotiators. Stockholm: International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)
(especially, D. Bloomfield, C. Nupen and P. Harris, Chapter 3, "Negotiation Processes",
pp.59-120).
Last, D. M. (1995/96), "Peacekeeping Doctrine and Conflict Resolution Techniques", Armed
Forces & Society, 22(2): 187-210.
For good accounts of conflict resolution techniques played out by peacekeeping actors in the
field, see:
Hollingsworth, L. (1996), Merry Christmans Mr. Larry. London: Mandarin. (His account of
experiences in Bosnia as a UNHCR representative)
Rose, M. (1998), Fighting for Peace: Bosnia 1994. London: The Harvill Press. (His account as
Commander of the UN Protection Force in Bosnia)
Stewart, B. (1993), Broken Lives: A Personal View of the Bosnian Conflict. London: Harper
Collins. (His account of Bosnia during his time in charge of the British Command Area of
UNPROFOR)
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 54
LESSON 3
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Conflict settlement processes are based on:
a. compromised solutions achieved through negotiation and bargaining
b. achieving win-win outcomes
c. mutual problem-solving
d. long-term structural and relational change
2. Conflict resolution approaches aim to:
a. remove the causes of conflict
b. achieve win-win outcomes
c. improve communication and co-operation
d. all of the above
3. Which of the peacekeeping operations below is an example of conflict settlement?
a. UNTAG
b. UNMIH
c. UNFICYP
d. ONUSAL
4. Which of the peacekeeping operations below is an example of conflict resolution?
a. UNOSOM
b. UNTAG
c. ONUC
d. UNIFIL
5. Non-coercive third party intervention is:
a. an imposed process
b. partial
c. binding
d. a voluntary process
6. Who are the third parties involved in the following intervention approaches:
a. Track 1?
b. Track 2?
c. Track 3?
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 55
7. Track 2 intervention is associated with:
a. judicial hearings
b. pure mediation
c. mediation with muscle
d. official mediation
8. Who represents the conflict parties in problem-solving workshops?
a. official government leaders
b. unofficial, influential community representatives
c. warlords
d. representatives from outside the conflict
9. The aim of conflict-resolution training is:
a. to learn new skills and knowledge
b. to apply skills and knowledge to specific situations
c. to reflect on one's own conflict and conflict resolution experiences
d. all of the above
e. none of the above
10. The most important element of communication is:
a. speaking
b. questioning
c. active listening
d. timing
Answer Key: 1-a; 2-d; 3-c; 4-b; 5-d; 6-a: official government/inter-government representatives;
b: unofficial representatives of non-governmental organisations; c: local individuals and
organisations; 7-b; 8-b; 9-d; 10-c
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 56
Exercise: Conflict Resolution Skills in Peacekeeping Practice
Aim: To give the student the opportunity to consider situations in peacekeeping environments
that may require the use of conflict resolution skills and techniques.
Method: Below you will find a series of scenarios. Read each scenario, keeping in mind the
tool-box of conflict resolution techniques you have acquired in this Lesson. Following each
scenario there are several questions asking you to consider what you would do in the situation.
(You may wish to find other individuals to participate as role-players, allowing you to practise
your conflict resolution skills.) There is a debrief key at the end.
Scenario 1
You are a military peacekeeper monitoring a 20-kilometre cease-fire line along an area of
difficult terrain. The warring factions agreed to withdraw all heavy weapons from the area.
Except for occasional sniper-fire from both sides, the area has been relatively quiet, with few
violations. Today, you learn that heavy weapons have been displayed close to the line by one
side; the other side has interpreted this act as preparation for an attack. Naturally, you are
concerned. Firstly, this act clearly violates the cease-fire agreement; secondly, the display may
provide justification for similar defensive build-ups by the other side. This situation could easily
escalate.
What should you do in this situation?
What strategies for dealing with (potential) conflict can you employ?
Who might you involve in your approach?
Based on your options, what are the possible outcomes?
Are there other conflict resolution scenarios that might arise from this one?
Scenario 2
You are a representative of an international aid agency in charge of a small humanitarian aid
convoy. You are delivering food and medical supplies to a besieged village of unarmed civilians.
Your route has already been changed twice and you have been delayed at several checkpoints. At
the last checkpoint you were inspected to ensure that your vehicles contained no weapons or
ammunition. As darkness falls, you assumed this would be the final stop. However, just outside
the village, you are stopped at a roadblock by a group of heavily armed and aggressive militia
who refuse to give you access to the village. They claim that you have no approval to proceed
and you must turn back. They also accuse you of aiding the enemy and ignoring their own
starving people.
What is your response?
What conflict resolution technique would you use and why?
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 57
Would you use hard power or soft power strategies?
Who would you involve in the process?
List the steps you would take in your chosen approach.
Scenario 3
You are a civilian peacekeeper working with the UN in Kosovo. You have arrived at the
University of Pristina to explore the possibility of using University offices for the work of your
group in drawing up the Civil Registry. The University is presently closed but it will open soon.
While you are there you meet a small group of Serb students who are fearful that they will not be
allowed back into the Medical Faculty when the University re-opens, under what they suspect
will be an Albanian-dominated University Administration. They are aware that under the period
of Serb domination, which prevailed until the NATO attacks and the withdrawal of Serb military
forces, Albanians were effectively excluded from the Medical Faculty. A group of the Albanian
students also want to speak to you because they are equally determined that when the Faculty
re-opens, priority must be given to all those Albanians who were previously excluded. This
means that there is not much likelihood that there will be any space for Serbs for a number of
years if at all! Both groups feel very strongly about this and have threatened to block your
access to the building unless you listen to them.
How would you react to this situation?
What conflict resolution options do you have?
How would you go about implementing your strategy?
What is the likely response of the conflict parties?
What are the possible outcomes?
Debrief: You have probably considered a range of approaches in response to the scenarios
above. Although there are no “correct” answers, we can suggest the most applicable conflict
resolution techniques that could be used in these situations. In Scenario 1, it would be useful for
you to act as a go-between, to carry information from one party to another. By ensuring that the
weapons build-up is not an indication of future attack through information-gathering/passing, it
may reduce further escalation of the conflict. In Scenario 2, the most likely strategy would be to
engage in negotiation, to build trust and to discover common grounds from which to find a
mutually satisfying agreement. In Scenario 3, you may wish to volunteer to mediate between the
groups to generate options to resolve this particular conflict situation. This scenario is
particularly useful to role-play.
Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 58
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LESSON 4
CONTEMPORARY CONFLICT DYNAMICS
1. Introduction
2. Defining Major Contemporary Conflicts
3. Trends, Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict
4. Conflict Types
5. Theories of Conflict
6. Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict
Increasingly, internal conflict, rooted in ideas of human identity and often expressed with
frightening intensity, is the major threat to stability and peace at the individual, local and
international levels. Today's predominant pattern of conflict is proving resistant to the
available and accepted tools of conflict management.
- David Bloomfield, in Resolving Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for Negotiators
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 60
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson provides a guide to the ways in which contemporary conflicts can be analysed
Good Conflict analysis is a vital part of any successful process of conflict resolution. Analysis
involves the understanding of changing patterns of conflict, such as where they are located, what
trends and forces seem to explain causes, and the types or categories into which conflicts can be
grouped. Theories which explain the occurrence of conflicts are discussed. An explanation of the
term “protracted social conflict” is provided to provide an understanding of the outbreak of civil
wars.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Define the nature of contemporary conflict;
Understand the trends, distribution and costs of contemporary conflict;
Distinguish between the types of conflict;
Distinguish between the key theories of conflict;
Understand the concept of protracted social conflict (PSC);
Discuss the sources of conflict.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 61
1. Introduction
The previous Lessons have outlined some of the basic concepts of conflict resolution.
This Lesson identifies the conflicts that are relevant to the study of conflict resolution and
peacekeeping. It also looks at the way in which major armed conflict has been analysed within
the Conflict Resolution tradition. To fully understand the nature of contemporary peacekeeping,
it is useful to examine recent conflict patterns and to consider how these trends have influenced
peacekeeping practice. Conflict Resolution analysts have traditionally included all levels of
conflict, from interpersonal conflict through to international conflict, and all stages of conflict
escalation and de-escalation. This lesson, however, is concerned with actual or potentially
violent conflicts, ranging from domestic conflict situations that threaten to become militarised
beyond the control of domestic civil police, through to full-scale interstate war.
2. Defining Contemporary Conflicts
There are many different terms currently used to describe contemporary conflicts in the
international community, including internal conflicts, new wars, small wars, civil wars, ethnic
conflicts, as well as varying expressions used by humanitarian and development NGOs and
international agencies, including complex human emergencies and complex political
emergencies. From the Conflict Resolution community the terms deeply-rooted conflict,
intractible conflict and protracted social conflict have evolved – the latter directing attention to
the internal or domestic causes of many contemporary conflicts. While these terms can be used
interchangeably, each requires some qualification. For example, “internal conflicts” often have
external causes and attract outside interventions; when states collapse, the international system is
affected. This poses the hardest of challenges to contemporary peacekeeping operations because
often in these internal wars there is little or no distinction between soldiers and civilians, and
violence is directed not only against civilian populations but also against hospitals, schools,
refugee centres and cultural sites.
3. Trends, Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict
3.1 Trends
Although identifying the significant trends in contemporary conflict is not an exact
science, a number of patterns have emerged. Throughout the Cold War, the study of conflict
focused on interstate conflict. Regional conflicts and civil wars were seen as a reflection of the
United States-Soviet Union crisis and they were carefully managed and contained by the bi-polar
system. During this period, conflict resolution efforts were aimed at maintaining international
peace and security between states. This included traditional peacekeeping which consisted of a
“thin blue line”: it focused narrowly on conflict containment, monitoring borders and buffer
zones after cease-fires were agreed to.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 62
1
P. Wallensteen and M. Sollenberg (1995), “Armed Conflict at the End of the Cold War, 1989-93”,
Journal of Peace Research, 30 (3): 331-46; P. Wallensteen and M. Sollenberg (1996), “After the Cold War:
Emerging Patterns of Armed Conflicts”, Journal of Peace Research, 32 (3): 345-60; P. Wallensteen and M.
Sollenberg (1997), “Armed Conflicts, Conflict Termination and Peace Agreements, 1989-96”, Journal of
Peace Research, 34 (3): 339-58.
While the end of the Cold War in 1989 brought an end to a number of ongoing conflicts
fuelled by superpower tensions, it gave way to a new pattern of armed conflict in the 1990s:
increasingly violent internal or intrastate conflicts – wars fought within a state's own boundaries.
Examples include Angola, Cambodia, Colombia, Haitia, Liberia, Rwanda, Somalia, former-Soviet
Union and former-Yugoslavia.
Ongoing studies, including those at Uppsala University in Sweden, confirm this pattern.
1

They report that the new pattern of conflict involves challenges to existing state authority,
including secessionist movements that threaten the territorial integrity of the state (for example,
former-Yugoslavia and Chechnya), and challenges to central control which may also end in
fragmentation with no one actor in overall command (for example, Liberia and Somalia). These
conflicts undoubtedly require more sophisticated forms of conflict resolution, hence, the
emergence of an increasing number and diversifying nature of contemporary peacekeeping
operations.
Contrary to most claims, the Uppsala studies suggest that the number of armed conflicts
has not been continuously rising since the end of the Cold War. The total number of conflicts
steadily increased from 47 in 1989 to 55 in 1992, but decreased in 1993 to 46. Yet, one major
trend shows through in almost all studies: a decline in the number of interstate wars. There were
no interstate wars in 1993 and 1994 and only a minor border altercation between Peru and
Ecuador in 1995, and a flare-up in the long-running dispute between India and Pakistan over
Kashmir in 1996 (and, more recently, in 1999).
3.2 Distribution
With the ending of the Cold War, regional patterns of conflict have become more
significant. A number of regions can be identified where fighting has spilled over from one area
to another or where a common precipitating factor has generated violent conflicts in a vulnerable
area. This includes: the Great Lakes area of Africa (identity/secession conflicts and refugee
movements); West Africa (factional conflicts following the break-down of post-colonial states);
the Caucasus (identity/secession conflicts following the collapse of the Soviet Union); Central
Asia (identity/secession and factional conflicts following the collapse of the Soviet Union). The
regional effects are both outwards (“spill-over”, “contagion”, “diffusion”) and inwards
(“influence”, “interference”, “intervention”).
There have also been efforts to understand the distinctions between regions with relatively
stable interstate relations and more volatile, conflict-prone areas. There are several important
regional variations. For example, there has been an absence of interstate war in Latin America
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 63
since 1941, despite its turbulent history. While there has been a decline in number and intensity of
conflicts in Central and Latin America, there has been little change in the Middle East. The level
of violent conflict in Southern Africa in the 1990s has been decreasing, yet it has been increasing
in Sub-Saharan West Africa and the Great Lakes region.
Distinctions can be made between pluralistic security communities, in which no serious
provisions are made for war between member states (for example, North America, Western
Europe); zones of peace, such as the Caribbean and South Pacific states; no-war zones, such as
Southeast Asia and (perhaps) East Asia; and zones of war, such as Africa, some former-Soviet
republics, the Middle East, Central America, South Asia and the Balkans. Table 4-1 displays the
figues of recent armed conflict.
TABLE 4-1
Major Armed Conflicts by Region and Type, 1995-1997
Interstate Revolution/
Ideology
Identity/
Succession
Factional Total
Africa 0 3 8 2 13
Asia 0 4 10 2 16
Europe 0 0 7 1 8
Latin
America
0 3 0 1 4
Middle East 0 3 4 0 7
3.3 Costs
It is useful to consider the material and human cost of contemporary violent conflict.
Approximately 28 million people may have been killed in more than 150 major armed conflicts
since 1945. Whereas only 5% of the casualties in the First World War were civilians, by the
Second World War this figure had risen to 50%, and as the new pattern of conflict emerged in the
early 1990s, the civillian share increased to about 80%, most of them being women and children.
(Some analysts suggest that this figure is closer to 90%.)
By 1993 internal conflict had resulted in 18.2 million refugees and 24 million internally
displace people. In several African countries (Angola, Eritrea, Liberia, Mozambique, Rwanda,
Somalia and Sudan), at least half of the total population have been forced to flee at some point.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 64
This is further complicated by the length of time that some classes of conflict last. Whole
generations have no other experience than war.
A brief account of the conflict in Liberia demonstrates the high cost of conflict. A series of
wars since 1989 have reduced Liberia, a potentially prosperous African country, to a state of chaos
and aid dependency. At least six factions have been vying for power, while a regional
peacekeeping force, ECOMOG, attempted to enforce a series of short-lived peace agreements.
Liberia was divided historically between the dominant “Americos”, descendants of freed
American slaves who created the Liberian state, and the indigenous peoples, themselves ethnically
divided into at least sixteen different ethnic groups. From the mid-1980s President Doe attempted
to consolidate his power-base by favouring the Krahn ethnic group with economic and educational
advantages, and by promoting them in the army and police force. When Charles Taylor's National
Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) started the First War in 1989, its declared objective was to
liberate all of the people from Doe's regime. But it was clear that both sides (Doe's national
Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL), and Taylor's NPFL) were killing those who were perceived to be
enemies, the test of which was ethnicity. The AFL targeted Gio and Mano peoples; the NPFL
killed Krahn. After a stalemate, Taylor launched the Second War late in 1992. By the time of the
Third War in 1994-95, the violence was no longer inter-ethnic but factional, and driven by general
economic predation. This predation operated at two levels. First, the faction leaders built up
power and wealth by dealing in the exploitation of the country's considerable natural resources.
Taylor gained from the timber, rubber and mineral resources, while two factions (ULIMO-J and
ULIMO-K) fought over the diamonds and gold resources. Second, because none of this wealth
was used to pay the rank-and-file faction fighters, they were left to fend for themselves by theft
and robbery. In doing so there were widespread violations of human rights as people were
terrorised to part with their goods and property, or to prevent them escaping from conscription and
forced labour. This type of behaviour is war-lordism, which is characterised by a greedy attitude
towards society and the economy and by reliance on military force and violence. This analysis
helps to explain much about behaviours in war zones in general. The violence goes beyond
rational expectations of what can be gained economically, for a rational warlord would not kill the
goose that lays the golden egg. To explain the violence, we must take into account
socio-psychological considerations as well as economic motivations. In Liberia, accumulated fears
have driven people beyond killing the “ethnic enemy” into factions which pursue a ruthless course
of immediate economic predation while also practicing a general and undirected vengeance.
The overall tally of material destruction, psychological suffering and human misery dwarfs
any gain by particular conflict parties. This provides the main motivation for conflict resolution:
to find non-violent ways of achieving political goals.
4. Conflict Types
The variation of conflict within and across regions leads to an important question in
conflict analysis. Are there different types of conflict that need to be distinguished from each
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 65
other if effective conflict resolution is to be undertaken? There are many different typologies,
with a variety of criteria and categories; they differentiate in terms of conflict parties, conflict
issues, and conflict causes. A basic working typology for the present discussion is offered in Table
4-2 below.
TABLE 4-2: A Typology of International Conflict
CONFLICT TYPE EXAMPLE
Interstate 1 Gulf War, 1991
Non-Interstate
a) Revolution/Ideology 2 Algeria
b) Identity/Secession 3 Sri Lanka
c) Factional 4 Liberia
Distinctions may be usefully made between three types of non-interstate conflict. Factional
conflict covers coups d'etat, intra-elite power struggles, criminality, and warlordism where the aim
is to seize or retain state power to further particular interests. Identity/secession conflict involves
the relative status of communities or “communal groups” in relation to the state. Depending on
the nature of the group and the contextual situation, this includes struggles for access, autonomy,
secession or control. Revolution/ideology conflict includes the more ambitious aim of changing
the nature of government in a state, for example, by: (a) changing the system from capitalist to
socialist; (b) changing the form of government from dictatorship to democracy; (c) changing the
religious orientation of the state from secular to religious. In the post-Cold War world there has
been a decline in the incidence of (a), but not in the incidence of (b) and particularly (c).
There are problems with categorising conflicts: (1) they often change character over time
and (2) they are interpreted by the conflict parties in different ways. For example, in 1996 the
conflict in Afghanistan could be interpreted as a revolution/ideology conflict to the extent that it
was associated with the Taleban's drive to create an Islamic state. Or, it may have been
categorised as an identity/secession conflict as it was seen as a struggle between Pashtuns
(Talebans), Uzbeks (Dostum) and Tajiks (Masood). Or, it was a factional conflict if the fighting
was seen to be perpetuated by the interests of rival warlords and their clients. Alternatively, it was
an interstate conflict by proxy if the war was seen to be little more than the playing out on Afghan
soil what were essentially rivalries between outside states such as Pakistan, Uzbekistan and Iran.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 66
2
P. Wehr (1979), Conflict Regulation. Boulder, CO: Westview press.
3
K. Holsti (1991), Peace and War: Armed Conflicts and International Order, 1648-1989. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press.
4
M. Kaldor and B. Vashee (eds.) (1997), New Wars: Restructuring the Global Military Sector. London:
Pinter.
5. Theories of Conflict
5.1 Theories
There have been many attempts to develop general theories or models for explaining the
causes of conflict. These have been summarised by Paul Wehr into seven main areas of
explanation (some of which compete with each other):
2
1. Conflict is innate in social animals.
2. Conflict is generated by the nature of societies and the way they are structured.
3. Conflict is dysfunctional in social systems and a symptom of strain.
4. Conflict is functional in social systems and necessary for development and
change.
5. Conflict is an inevitable feature of competing state interests in conditions of
international anarchy.
6. Conflict is the result of misperception, miscommunication, and miscalculation.
7. Conflict is a natural (and potentially creative process) common to all societies
However, a single, encompassing theory capable of explaining all of the phenomena
associated with conflict does not exist. Therefore, another approach is to take the position that
conflicts are unique and the most we can do is to provide historical or political accounts of each
specific conflict without hoping to be able to find patterns or common causes. There are
explanations of conflict that take an intermediate position between these extremes, suggesting
that there are common patterns and processes to be found in the kinds of conflict which have
come to trouble the international community in recent years.
The intermediate position is most useful, as there are some common features to
contemporary conflicts. According to Kalevi Holsti, wars of the late-20th century were not about
foreign policy or competing state interests; they were about statehood, governance and the role of
nations and communities within states.
3
These new wars are characterised as follows:
4
In terms of: political goals, they are no longer about the foreign policy interests of states,
but the consolidation of new forms of power based on ethnic homogeneity).
In terms of ideologies, they are no longer about universal principles such as democracy,
fascism or socialism, but tribalist and communalist identity politics.
In terms of participation and forms of mobilisation, they are no longer about conscription
or appeals to patriotism, but fear, corruption, religion, magic and the media.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 67
In terms of external support, they are no longer about superpowers or ex-colonial powers,
but diaspora, foreign mercenaries, criminal mafia, regional powers.
In terms of the mode of warfare, they are no no longer about formal and organised
campaigns with demarcated front-lines, bases and heavy weapons, but fragmented and
dispersed, involving para-military and criminal groups, child soldiers, light weapons, and
the use of atrocity, famine, rape and siege.
In terms of economics, they are no longer funded by taxation and generated by state
mobilisation, but sustained by outside emergency assistance and a parallel economy
including unofficial export of timber and precious metals, drug-trafficking, criminal
rackets, and plunder.
To examine these kinds of conflicts more closely and to illustrate the intermediate
(between grand theory and no theory) approach to explaining conflict we will consider Edward
Azar's theory of protracted social conflict (PSC). This is an example of conflict resolution
analysis developed during the 1980s, which anticipated much of the current preoccupation with
the domestic social roots of conflict and failures of governance. It is also a model of conflict
causes that became highly relevant to the circumstances in which peacekeeping operations have
been deployed in the 1990s. During this period, the nature of peacekeeping changed because the
nature of conflict changed. Successful peacekeeping therefore depends on a better understanding
of the underlying conflict causes.
5.2 Civil Wars and the Domestic Roots of Conflict: Conflict as Protracted Social
Conflict
Azar used the term protracted social conflict (PSC), to identify the type of conflict that
has persisted in, for example, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Iran, Israel, Lebanon, Nigeria, the Philippines,
Sri Lanka, South Africa. Sudan, or Northern Ireland. More recently, conflicts in the Balkans
(Croatia, Bosnia, and Kosovo) also qualify as PSCs. The key feature of a PSC is that it
represents prolonged and violent struggles by communal groups for such basic needs as security,
recognition, acceptance, and access to political institutions and economic participation.
By the early-1990s Azar had identified over 60 examples of this new type of conflict. It
was different from traditional disputes over territory, economic resources, or East-West rivalry
and it was disticntive, most of all, because it revolved around questions of communal identity.
The term PSC emphasises that the sources of many contemporary conflicts lay within rather than
between states.
Azar identified four clusters of variables that act as preconditions for potential conflicts'
transformation to high levels of intensity.
Precondition I: Communal Content
The most useful unit of analysis in PSC situations is the identity group racial, religious,
ethnic, cultural and others. PSC analysis focuses in the first instance on identity groups, however
defined, because it is the relationship between identity groups and states which is at the core of
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 68
the problem. Individual interests and needs are mediated through membership of social groups.
In many places there is a disarticulation between the state and society as a whole. Azar linked the
disjunction between state and society in many parts of the world to a colonial legacy which
artificially imposed European ideas of territorial statehood onto different communal groups on
the principle of “divide-and-rule”. As a result, in many post-colonial multicommunal societies
the state machinery is dominated by a single communal group or a coalition of a few communal
groups who are unresponsive to the needs of other groups in the society. This strains the social
fabric and eventually breeds fragmentation, thus feeding into the other factors which produce
PSC.
Precondition II: Deprivation of Needs
Azar identified deprivation of human needs as the underlying source of PSC. In
particular, he identified security needs, development needs, political access needs, and identity
needs (cultural and religious expression). In the approach taken by Azar, people's security can
only be provided for by the meeting of these needs. Security is not a “stand alone” idea but is
linked to needs for development and political access. The reduction of overt conflict required a
reduction in levels of underdevelopment. Groups who seek to satisfy their identity and security
needs through conflict are in effect seeking changes in the structure of their society. In this case,
conflict resolution can only occur if societies can also develop economically. In this way, peace
is linked to development because development is the satisfaction of needs, which, if they remain
unsatisfied, will propel people into conflict.
Precondition III: State and Governance
Azar identified the role of the state and the nature of its governance as the critical factor
in determining the satisfaction or frustration of individual and identity group needs. Most states
in which PSC happens tend to be characterised by incompetent, parochial, fragile, and
authoritarian governments. The weakness of the state is a crucial factor in provoking these
conflicts for three reasons. Firstly, in Western liberal theory the state is supposed to act as an
impartial arbiter of conflicts, treating all members of the political community as legally equal
citizens. This is not what happens in newer and less stable states: political authority tends to be
monopolized by the dominant identity group which uses the state to maximise their interests at
the expense of others. Secondly, the monopolising of power by dominant individuals and groups
and the limiting of access to other groups creates a crisis of legitimacy, so that excluded groups
have no loyalty or attachment to the state and may then seek to secede from it or to take it over
completely. Thirdly, PSCs tend to occur in developing countries which are typically
characterised by rapid population growth and a limited economic resource base. This also means
that they have a restricted political capacity. They often have a colonial legacy where they have
had weak or non-existent participatory institutions, or a hierarchical tradition of imposed
bureaucratic rule from metropolitan centres. They may also have inherited instruments of
political repression. This limited and inflexible political capacity prevents the state from
responding to, and meeting, the needs of all its citizens.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 69
Precondition IV: International Linkage
Azar's concept of international linkage refers particularly to political-economic relations
of economic dependency within the international economic system. The internal factors
generated by the first three preconditions become complicated and exacerbated by the spread of
the conflict across the borders of the state. A network of political-military linkages develops as
both the state authorities and the rebelling groups look for regional and global sources of support.
For example, in the Great Lakes region of Africa, which has experienced some of the world's
most brutal conflicts in recent years, domestic or internal civil wars have both spilled over to
provoke conflicts in neighbouring states and have themselves been fuelled by forces in
neighbouring states intervening to help one side or the other. This is well illustrated by the
conflict in and around Rwanda. A number of Tutsi exiles from Rwanda helped President
Museveni of Uganda in his successful bid for power. They were integrated into the Ugandan
army after 1986, and subsequently defected with their weapons to the mainly Tutsi-led Rwanda
Patriotic Front forces, which eventually seized control of Rwanda in 1994. This led to a
consolidation of Tutsi control in Burundi and, in Autumn 1996, to cross-border action in
then-Zaire against the Hutu militia responsible for the 1994 Rwanda massacres who were being
sheltered by President Mobutu. With enthusiastic backing from the Zairean Tutsi Banyamulenge,
who had been discriminated against by Mobutu's Western Zairean-based regime, this swelled
into concerted military support for Laurent Kabila in his march on Kinshasa and eventual
deposition of Mobutu. This in turn had a knock-on effect in Angola by depriving UNITA's Jonas
Savimbi of Mobutu's support, and encouraging the sending in of Angolan troops to
Congo-Brazzaville to help reinstall Denis Sassou-Nguesso as President in October 1997.
Meanwhile, similar incursions were beginning to tip the scale in the long-standing conflict in
Sudan. In 1998 renewed fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo (former-Zaire) threatened
to internationalise the conflict further as Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe were drawn in on the
side of Kabila, and Rwanda and Uganda on the side of the rebels.
6. Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict
While Azar saw international linkages as one of the four main clusters of variables making PSC
likely, more recently analysts have located the sources of contemporary conflict at the global
level, regarding conflict as local manifestations of global processes.
The main focus here is on what Paul Rogers describes as three interlinked trends:
deep inequalities in the global distribution of wealth and economic power;
human-induced environmental constraints exacerbated by excessive energy consumption
in the developed world and population growth in the undeveloped world, making it
difficult for human well-being to be improved by conventional economic growth;
continuing militarisation of security relations, including the further proliferation of lethal
weaponry.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 70
As a result of these trends, a combination of wealth-poverty disparities and limits to
growth may contribute to future unsatisfied expectations. At the end of the twentieth century 1/7
of the world's population controlled 3/4 of its wealth, and 3/4 of humanity live in developing
countries, a proportion likely to continue rising.
In this context, forecasters are giving serious consideration to predictions of a coming
generation of conflicts fuelled by global economic turbulence, environmental deterioration,
north-south (and other) political tensions, weapons proliferation, and international crime
impacting on “weak states”. As traditional patterns of authority and order are weakened,
exclusionist policies linked to ethnic and religious identities emerge as alternative sources of
loyalty. In Lesson 5 we will look at how the kind of analysis we have considered here in Lesson
4 is helpful in understanding the events that caused a brutally violent conflict in one of Africa's
poorest countries, Rwanda. The conflict tested peacekeeping mechanisms up to and beyond their
capacity to cope.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 71
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 1, "Statistics of Deadly Quarrels", pp. 22-33;
Chapter 3, "Understanding Contemporary Conflict", pp. 65-91).
Azar, E. (1990), The Management of Protracted Social Conflict: Theory and Cases. Aldershot:
Darmouth.
Rogers, P. and M. Dando (1992), A Violent Peace: Global Security After the Cold War. London:
Brasseys.
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 72
LESSON 4
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Most of the conflicts that occurred during the 1990s were:
a. interstate conflicts
b. factional conflicts
c. civil wars
2. The world's most conflict prone areas are (choose two):
a. The Pacific
b. The Mediterranean fringe of southern Europe
c. Western Europe
d. The Great Lakes of Africa
e. Southeast Europe and the Balkans
3. Approximately how many major armed conflicts have there been since 1945?
a. 100
b. 150
c. 200
d. 250
4. How many people have been killed in these conflicts?
a. 10 million
b. 18 million
c. 28 million
d. 38 million
5. Protracted social conflict was a term for a type and cause of conflict developed by which
conflict analyst?
a. Mary Kaldor
b. Kalevi Holsti
c. Paul Rogers
d. Edward Azar
6. Which of the following would you include as a PSC?
a. The Gulf War
b. The Falklands War
c. The wars in Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia and Kosovo
d. All of the above
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 73
7. How many preconditions are there to identify a PSC?
a. 2
b. 4
c. 6
d. 8
8. List these preconditions below.
9. Peacekeeping was developed in the 1950s especially to deal with civil wars or PSCs.
a. True
b. False
10. Conflict resolution theory suggests that all conflicts have exact common causes.
a. True
b. False
Answer Key: 1-c; 2-d; 3-b; 4-c; 5-d; 6-c; 7-b; 8-communal content, needs deprivation,
state/governance, international linkages; 9-b, false; 10-b, false
Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 74
Exercise: Conflict Analysis
Aim: To apply some of the elements of conflict analysis outlined above to a “live” conflict
happening as you are studying this unit.
Method: For one week, follow the news about any one international conflict covered by the mass
media (i.e., newspaper, television or radio). It might be the conflict in Chechnya, Congo, the
Former Yugoslavia including Kosovo, or any other “hot” conflict. You need only follow the
news account (i.e., you do not need to do any background research unless, of course, you wish
to). At least one conflict will be ongoing and reported in the press, on the television or radio in a
typical week. From what you have heard or read about the conflict, complete the following
assessment profile.
1. Where is the conflict?
2. Who is the conflict between (i.e., who are the conflict parties)?
3. How would you classify the type of conflict?
Inter-state
Religion/Ideology
Identity secession
Factional
Or, is it not easily classifiable? Why?
4. Is there evidence that any of Azar's four variable are at work?
Communal content
Needs denial
Poor/corrupt governace
International linkage

LESSON 5
CONFLICT MAPPING
1. Introduction
2. What is Conflict Mapping?
2.1 A Conflict Mapping Guide: A Preliminary Conflict
Analysis
2.2 Conflict Tracking
3. A Conflict Map of Rwanda
When the mapmakers of the old world came across terra incognita or unknown territory, they
sometimes wrote on their maps, "beyond here be dragons". For peacekeepers and others
working in contemporary conflict zones, there are dragons aplenty in the terra incognita of
complex emergencies and civil wars.
- Tom Woodhouse, "Peacekeeping: Terra Incognita ‘Here Be Dragons’ "
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 76
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson provides an account of how particular conflicts can be understood by the use of
conflict mapping and conflict tracking techniques. The technique is illustrated in acase study of the
conflict in Rwanda, including an examination of the role of UN peacekeeping in that conflict.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will:
Be aware of the importance of conducting a conflict analysis through conflict mapping
techniques;
Be familiar with a conflict mapping system;
Understand the ways in which conflict analysis and mapping can be used in relation to a
specific conflict (Rwanda);
Produce a preliminary conflict map.
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 77
1. Introduction

In Lesson Four, we dealt with the approaches, definitions and models by which we can
begin to understand the phenomenon of violent armed conflict. In this Lesson we move from
how conflict, in general, can be understood at the macro-level, to how particular conflicts can be
understood through a conflict mapping analysis at the micro-level (i.e., the component parts of a
specific conflict). One of the first conflict mapping frameworks in Conflict Resolution was
developed by Paul Wehr, from whom the guide here is adapted.
The analysis of conflict is a necessary precondition for successful management and
resolution. It is important that peacekeeping forces are aware and well-informed about the nature
of the conflict in which they are intervening and that they are able to have tools for understanding
the changing forces of the conflict. Conflict mapping provides a method by which to apply the
broader guidelines provided by conflict analysis. Parties locked in conflict have three lenses
through which they may view their conflict: most typically (as this is why they are in conflict),
they may have an adversarial lens (an us-versus-them, winner-takes-all perspective); or they may
have a reflective lens (that is, inward looking, reflecting on hurt and pain, considering how to
achieve their own goals); or they may use integrative lens (that is, they are able to understand
their own needs, and begin to understand the needs of their opponents). Conflict mapping enables
peacekeepers and other conflict resolvers to develop a clear understanding of how the conflict
parties perceive the situation and it increases the opportunities to promote integrative
perspectives.
In this lesson we show you how to develop and apply a conflict-mapping system, and to
up-date this by conflict tracking. We will demonstrate the use of conflict mapping through a case
study of Rwanda, which proved to be a very difficult case for UN peacekeeping.
2. What is Conflict Mapping?
2.1 Conflict Mapping
Conflict mapping is the first step for intervening in a conflict. It gives both the intervenor
and the conflict parties a clearer understanding of the origins, nature, dynamics and possibilities
for resolution of the conflict. It is a way of presenting a systematic analysis of a particular
conflict at a particular moment in time. Conflict mapping is a tool used by conflict analysts and it
is widely used in conflict resolution workshops to provide participants with a snapshot of the
conflict under consideration. A conflict map does not, of course, aim to solve the conflict; it
attempts to identify questions and issues that must be taken into account in any intervention
strategy. A conflict map should be understood to represent the views of the author(s) and to be
indicative rather than comprehensive.
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 78
This is followed-up by further analysis using the information in the map to identify the
scope for conflict resolution, preferably carried out with the help of the parties or embedded third
parties. This should identify: (1) changes in the context which could alter the conflict situation,
including the interests and capacities of third parties to influence it; (2) changes within and
between the conflict parties, including internal leadership struggles, varying prospects for
military success, and the readiness of general populations to express support for a settlement; (3)
possible ways of redefining goals and finding alternative means of resolving differences,
including suggested steps towards settlement and eventual transformation; (4) likely constraints
on these; and (5 how these might be overcome. For the specific needs of peacekeepers, there
should be ongoing efforts to review the operational priorities of the mission in relation to the
changing realities of the conflict.
2.2 Conflict Mapping: A Preliminary Conflict Analysis
The framework below provides a starting point by which you can gain an orientation and
a good working understanding of the background to the conflict and to the actors and the issues
they are pursuing. This analysis can be built upon and made more complex by adding other
mapping features, for example, Section D. The relevance of this level of analysis will depend on
the responsibilities held. Higher-level analysis of this kind is more likely to be conducted by
those with strategic policy analysis roles in the military, diplomatic and political arenas.
A Conflict Mapping Guide
A. Conflict Background
1. Map of the area
2. Brief description of the country
3. Outline history of the conflict.
B. The Conflict Parties
1. Who are the core conflict parties?
What are their internal sub-groups?
On what constituencies do they depend?
2. What are the conflict issues?
Is it possible to distinguish between positions, interests (material interests, values, relationships)
and needs?
3. What are the relationships between the conflict parties?
Are there inequalities (asymmetries) of power?
4. What are the different perceptions of the causes and nature of the conflict among the conflict
parties?
5. What is the current behaviour of the parties?
Is the conflict in an “escalatory” or “de-escalatory phase?
6. Who are the leaders of the parties?
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 79
At the elite/individual level, what are their objectives, policies, and interests?
What are their relative strengths and weaknesses?
C. Peacemaking Activities
1. What efforts have been made in the past to resolve the conflict?
2. What efforts are being made to resolve the conflict presently?
As a peacekeeper, what is your role likely to be?
Is your role clear?
Do you have the expertise and resources to manage?
Who else in the area is involved in peacemaking efforts (either internal or external groups)?
Are you aware of other individuals or organisations in the area with whom you might liase?
Advanced Level of Analysis
D. National, Regional and State Level Context
1. National Level
Is the nature of the state contested?
Are there institutions or organisations that could provide legitimate spaces for managing the
conflict?
2. Regional Level
How do relations with neighbouring states and societies affect the conflict?
Do the parties have regional supporters? Which regional actors may be trusted by the conflict
parties?
3. International Level
Are there outside geo-political interests?
What external factors fuel the conflict?
What may change them?
2.3 Conflict Tracking
A conflict map is an initial snapshot. Analysts may then want to regularly up-date it by
conflict tracking. This can now be done efficiently through the internet, using information from a
wide range of sources, such as ReliefWeb, the United Nations and the Department of
Peacekeeping Operations. There are also an increasing number of news pages and conferences on
particular conflicts available on-line. A major source of conflict information is the site of the
European Platform for Conflict Prevention and Transformation (EPCPT), based in the
Netherlands. It produces an international directory describing the activities of approximately 500
organisations working in the field of conflict prevention, management and resolution. The
directory also contains profiles of current conflicts, along with other sources of information about
them. For example, if you were to be deployed on a current peacekeeping mission Sierra Leone or
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 80
East Timor, or with KFOR or UNMIK in Kosovo, there would be many on-line sources of
information which would enable you to obtain valuable, up-to-date information about the conflict.
Some of these online sources are listed in Table 5-1 below.
TABLE 5-1
Selected On-Line Information Sources for Conflict Mapping and Tracking
United Nations: www.un.org
UN Peace & Security: www.un.org/peace
UN DPKO: www.un.org/Depts/dpko
EPCPT: www.euconflict@antenna.nl
The Carter Center: www.emory.edu/carter-center
ICRC (Red Cross): www.icrc/ch/
Relief Web: www.reliefweb.int/
International
Crisis Group: www.intl-crisis-group.org
UN and Conflicts
Monitor: www.brad.ac.uk/acad/peace/confres/
Journal of
Humanitarian
Assistance: www-jha.sps.cam.ac.uk
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 81
A, 1: Map of Rwanda
3. A Conflict Map of Rwanda

In the conflict map of Rwanda described below, we
have not tried to cover all the mapping levels indicated in
the mapping guide. We have simplified the map in order to
provide minimal, but clear, information about the nature of
the country and the roots of the fierce conflict which
overwhelmed it in the early-1990s. This provides a context
for understanding the enormous difficulties faced by
peacekeepers during this time. We conclude the profile
with a brief assessment of the UN's role.
A, 2-3: Background: Outline History and Description
of the Country
During a three month period in 1994 an estimated
500,000-800,000, and in some estimates possibly up to one
million people, were killed in the course of a genocidal
civil war in Rwanda. Over two million people fled to
become refugees in neighbouring countries, and up to one
million became displaced within Rwanda. The conflict
and its aftermath continues to trouble the Great Lakes
Region within which Rwanda is situated.
Rwanda is one of the smallest countries in Africa, similar in size to its southern
neighbour, Burundi, and its former colonial power, Belgium. It is also one of the most densely
populated, and the actual area of arable land must support a population of 7.15 million people
(1991 census), an average of 406 people per square kilometre the highest population density in
mainland Africa.
The country is divided into ten prefectures, each headed by a prefect; the prefectures are
divided into 143 communes governed by mayors or bourgmestres. Mayors and prefects are
appointed by the President. According to the 1991 census, 90.4% of the population was Hutu,
8.2% Tutsi and less than 1% a marginalised minority of pygmoid Twa. The population is
overwhelmingly engaged in peasant farming, with 95% living in the countryside, 3% in industry
and 66% of the urban population concentrated in the capital, Kigali. Only 4% of the population
are economically active within the cash economy. With an annual average increase in population
of 3% neither the farming households nor the small industrial and service sector can absorb the
increase in the working population. Most peasant farming households therefore also earned
money from working informally in small trades such as brick making, and/or by engaging in the
“black economy” including cross-border trade and smuggling. The pressure on rural households
to feed families from subsistence farming has become severe with population pressure forcing
the unsustainable use of marginal land and soil fertility deteriorating. The material conditions of
the population are severe: 2.6 million are without access to potable water, and 3.2 million are
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 82
without sanitation. The position of women is especially disadvantaged; although they are given
equal status as citizens in the constitution, in effect women can own nothing legally.
The formal economy is built around two cash crops: tea and coffee. Coffee is grown by
approximately 700,000 smallholders who were obliged to grow it on their land in return for a
guaranteed price per kilo from the government. By 1986, coffee exports produced over 80% of
Rwanda's export earnings, but these earnings fell dramatically in the 1990s, partly as a result of
the collapse of world coffee prices and, from 1990, with the impact of the conflict that raged into
genocidal slaughter in 1994. The performance of the economy generally worsened dramatically
by the end of the 1980s. With the increase in national debt by 450% between 1980 and 1992
(from US$189 million to US$873 million), a structural adjustment programme was introduced by
the World Bank and the IMF between 1990 and 1992, coinciding with the outbreak of the war.
Most of the population live on hill farms, in a rugo (a compound or household); every hill
contains a collection of ingo (plural for rugo), where both Hutu and Tutsi live side by side. These
form the basic units of society. The administrative language is French, but the common
vernacular language is kinyarwanda. In 1991, up to 50% of the population was illiterate. In terms
of religion, 90% of the population is Christian, 63% of these Catholics who were brought into the
Church as a result of French missionary activity which had a vigorous presence from the
late-19th century. Most of the founders of Hutu nationalism were educated at Catholic schools
and there has been a close relationship between leaders of Church and State.
The first inhabitants of Rwanda were hunter-gatherers and forest dwellers, whose
contemporary descendants are the minority Twa. From about 1000 AD there began a migration
of farmers (Hutu) from what is now Cameroon, who cleared the forests and began settled
agriculture. The Tutsi probably arrived into the Great Lakes Region as part of yet another
migration, southwards from the Horn of Africa. They were pastoralists who traded cattle
products for agricultural products, but this peaceful trading was followed by Tutsi conquests and
military and administrative control. One Tutsi clan, the Nyiginya, initially achieved political
dominance in eastern Rwanda and over a period of several centuries they formed the core of a
state that expanded westwards. Hutu and Tutsi were distinguished, in addition to clear physical
differences, largely by occupational categories: Tutsi were cattle herders, soldiers and
administrators, while Hutu were farmers. However, Tutsi were assimilated in the sense that they
spoke the language used by Hutu (kinyarwanda); they adopted Hutu traditions and customs; and a
clan system in which Hutu and Tutsi had common membership, spanned the whole society. By
the end of the 19th century, Rwanda was united under the king (mwami) Kigeri IV who, as head
of the state, owned all land and cattle. The mwami and all army chiefs were Tutsi, and the
provinces were administered by Tutsi chiefs. Thus, the pre-colonial Rwandese state was a
Tutsi-dominated structure, with Hutu in the middle and lower levels of the administration.
Initially under German colonial rule and then (as Ruanda-Urundi) occupied by Belgium,
Rwanda came under Belgian trusteeship for the League of Nations and then the UN. The
distinction between Hutu and Tutsi was maintained and in 1933 compulsory identity cards were
introduced by the Belgian administrators, from which time all Rwandese were decisively
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 83
categorised into Hutu, Tutsi and Twa. The Tutsi were given a monopoly of political and
administrative power under Belgian trusteeship. This whole system was thrown into reverse
when during the 1950s, as part of the process of decolonisation, support shifted from the minority
Tutsi to the majority Hutu. Between 1959 and 1961 the Tutsi-dominated monarchy was replaced
during a revolution by a Hutu-dominated independent republic. In July 1962, Rwanda gained
independence from Belgium, under the presidency of Gregoire Kayibanda from the Parmehutu
Party. The seeds of the modern conflict were sown in this period when tens of thousands of Tutsi,
in a series of upheavals, were forced into exile in neighbouring countries, and refugee groups
began armed attacks across the border into Rwanda. By the early 1990s it has been estimated that
there were 600, 000 Tutsi refugees in Zaire, Tanzania, Burundi and Uganda, equivalent to about
9% of the total population of the country, or 50% of the Tutsi population.
B, 1-6: Conflict Parties and Issues
In 1973, following a coup d'etat, Major General Juvenal Habyarimana took power and
formed the Second Republic, backed by a new party, the Mouvement Revolutionnaire National
pour le Developpement (MRND), which became the only party under the constitution of 1978.
The exiled Tutsi became increasingly militant and in 1988, following a conference on Rwandan
refugees held in Washington DC, the Rwandese Patriotic Front (RPF) was formed in Kampala,
Uganda. Based in and supported by Uganda, the RPF launched an attack on northern Rwanda and
demanded the right to re-settle large numbers of mainly Tutsi refugees, as well as a series of
political reforms, including a multi-party democracy. The RPF had very close links with the
Ugandan army, the NRA of President Museveni. Despite a series of internal, and later
international, efforts to resolve the conflict between the RPF and the Habyarimana regime, a
particular difficulty and obstacle to reform and moderation was caused by the make-up of the
regime itself. The Hutu of northern Rwanda had remained independent of the centralising state
under the Tutsi mwami or kings. However, in 1911 they were militarily defeated by a combined
force of German and southern Rwanda Tutsi troops, leaving a legacy both of resentment and
suspicion and re-enforcing the memory of a past not dominated by Tutsi. Habyarimana's informal
council (akazu), composed of his wife and his brothers-in-law, represented this Hutu subculture.
This made the regime prone to pressure from those suspicious of reconciliatory gestures and
hostile to those moderate Hutu who favoured dialogue with the RPF. The akazu was also
implicated in the massacres which occurred from April 1994, building up the Hutu militias (the
interahamwe, meaning "those who work together"), which carried out much of the killings, and
issuing instructions to the mayors. Nonetheless, there was growing internal and international
pressure on Habyarimana and the MRND to allow a multi-party system, to respect human rights,
and to enable a fair resettlement of refugees.
C: Peacemaking Activities: Efforts to Resolve the Conflict
By late 1992, although the RPF had made significant military advances, there was a
stalemate. A series of cease-fires were agreed, with Belgium, Tanzania and Uganda involved at
various times as mediators. Following talks in Zaire in 1990, the OAU agreed to send a small
observer force to oversee a cease-fire (the Groupement des Observateurs Militaires Neutres,
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 84
GOMN). The Arusha talks, between the RPF and the Rwandan government, began on 10th
August 1992, facilitated by Tanzania but with the involvement of Belgium, Burundi, France,
Germany, Senegal, the US, Zaire and the OAU. Following a year of negotiations, agreement was
reached on a set of protocols covering: human rights issues; power sharing in a transitional
government and parliament; the resettlement of refugees and internally displaced persons (who, by
February 1993, numbered one million); and the creation of a unified national army. Presidential
and parliamentary elections were set for the end of the period of transition, and a commission
would be appointed to draft a new constitution. Nine months after the inauguration of the
transitional government, the first groups of refugees would be allowed to resettle in a number of
repatriation areas. In the military reforms, specified in the Arusha Agreement (signed in August
1993 by President Habyarimana and the RPF leader Alexis Kanyarengwe), the role for a
peacekeeping force was defined. There provision was for a neutral international force, either UN
peacekeepers or an enlarged deployment of the OAU's GOMN under UN supervision, to provide
security in Kigali specifically and in Rwanda overall; to supervise the demilitarised zone along the
border with Uganda; and to supervise the transitional political agreements. The deployment of
such a force was a precondition for the entire process to proceed. However, the implementation of
the accords was delayed, partly because of the slowness of the deployment of UN peacekeeping
troops and partly because of the continued resistance of Habyarimana to implement the changes.
Despite formal agreement to Arusha, Habyarimana's regime promoted ethnic and political
polarisation. There is considerable evidence of an organised extremism within and around the
presidency which was either linked directly to, or at least did nothing to restrain, the outbreak of a
series of massacres and abuses of human rights, mostly directed against Tutsi communities but
also against Hutu moderates. The Hutu militias were first seen in action in a massacre of Tutsi at
Bugesera in March 1992. In a series of similar events a pattern emerged where a massacre was
preceded by intense ethnic propaganda by highly placed officials in the ruling MRND and local
mayors, and by the recruitment of the interahamwe militias across the country, mostly
unemployed young men, loyal to the hard- liners and providing a chain of command from the elite
into the rural communes. Thus, when the Arusha Agreements were signed, polarisation within
Rwanda was increasing rather than diminishing. Political moderates came under increasing
pressure because of the way in which the Habyarimana regime equated opponents of their party
with enemies of the Hutu people. To add to the tensions, in July 1993, Radio-Television Libre des
Milles Collines (RTLMC) began broadcasting. Backing the hard-line members of the MRND and
the uncompromising Hutu party Coalition pour la Defence de la Republique, (CDR), RTMLC
was opposed to the Arusha process and provided another powerful element in the incitement of
Hutu against Tutsi and moderate politicians.
Despite all this, it was generally felt in late-1993 that the Arusha process would move
forward, albeit more slowly than was planned. Formal approval was given by the UN Security
Council for the deployment of 2,500 peacekeepers to be deployed by March 1994; the first troops
arrived in October 1993. However, the foundation on which all other activities depended, the
enlarged transitional government which was to be the vehicle of the peace process, never came
into existence.
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 85
Two major trigger events precipitated the full outbreak of a massively violent civil war. In
October 1993, the first democratically elected Hutu president of Burundi, whose problems
mirrored those of Rwanda, was assassinated by Tutsi soldiers in the Burundian army. Many saw
this as the death for the Arusha Accords. In the aftermath of this coup thousands died in Burundi,
and approximately 70,000 Hutu from Burundi fled into southern Rwanda. For those hard-liners in
Rwanda who wished to spell out the lesson of the assassination, the message was clear: Arusha
could not work, because the Tutsi would never accept Hutu rule even within a government of
national unity. If this first event made the failure of the Arusha Accords likely, the second trigger
event made the failure certain and plunged the country into a period of violence which is
commonly regarded as one of the worst in human history. On the evening of 6th April 1994 the
Mystere Falcon aircraft carrying President Habyarimana of Rwanda and President Ntaryamira of
Burundi, who were returning from a meeting in Tanzania, was shot down on its approach to
Kigali airport, killing all on board. On the same evening of the crash, what appeared to be a
planned programme of killing began, directed from the highest level. The main perpetrators of the
genocide have been identified as the core group of Habyarimana's closest advisers; the leaders of
the local communes, numbering up to 300; the interahamwe militias numbering up to 30,000,
who carried out most of the killing; and members of the military elite and the Presidential Guard
who provided support to local interahamwe. The first act was the killing of opposition politicians,
mostly Hutu, followed by civilians who supported the peace process, including journalists, civil
servants and human rights activists. One of the first victims was Prime Minister Agathe
Uwilingiyimana who was killed along with ten UN peacekeepers from Belgium acting as her
bodyguards.
After the annihilation of the political opposition the Tutsi community in general became
the target. Between April and June 1994 500,000 to 800,000 people were killed, two million fled
to neighbouring countries, and one million were displaced within Rwanda. The UN was very
active in organising humanitarian relief, with the Secretary General Boutros- Ghali launching an
inter-agency appeal in March 1993 which raised US$78 million. In the ensuing humanitarian
crisis, a total of US$1.4 billion was given by the international community, the largest donors
being the European Union's Humanitarian Office (ECHO) and various departments of the US
government. The bulk of this aid was channelled through UNHCR, WFP, and the Red Cross
movement. In addition, up to 200 NGOs became involved in humanitarian relief. Yet, due to the
severity of the violence and the chaos that broke out after 6th April, humanitarian personnel were
evacuated and humanitarian operations temporarily suspended. However, the UN Disaster
Management Team was re-established with its base in Nairobi, under the direction of the newly
created UN Rwanda Emergency Office (UNREO).
On 8th April, the RPF resumed its offensive from the north, joined by a 600 strong
battalion stationed in Kigali under the Arusha Agreement. By the middle of July Kigali the capital
was taken and a new government installed with Pasteur Bizimungu as President and Faustin
Twagiramungu as Prime Minister, both Hutu. But effective power rested with General Paul
Kagame, commander of the RPF and Vice President and Minister of Defence in the new regime.
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 86
D: The Role of Peacekeeping
Following incursions into Rwanda from Uganda from 1990, Rwanda accused Uganda of
arming and supporting the RPF, an accusation which Uganda denied. In 1993 both countries
asked the UN to help establish the facts and to deploy military observers along the border. A small
technical mission was deployed in early-April 1993. UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR)
846 (22nd June 1993) authorised the establishment of a United Nations Observer Mission
Uganda- Rwanda (UNOMUR) on the Uganda side of the border to verify that no military
assistance was being provided. The Secretary-General appointed Brigadier General Romeo
Dallaire (Canada) as Commanding Military Observer. By the end of September, the mission
(headquartered in Kabale, Uganda), had reached its authorised strength of 81 military observers.
Dallaire served as Force Commander until August 1994, when he was replaced by Major-General
Guy Tousignant (Canada) who served until December 1995, after which Brigadier-General Siva
Kumar (India) was appointed as Acting Force Commander.
In June 1993 the RPF and the government of Rwanda asked the UN to be prepared for the
rapid deployment of a peacekeeping force when the Arusha peace talks concluded. Following a
UN reconnaissance mission to Rwanda during 19th-31st August, the Secretary-General
recommended the establishment of a United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR),
agreed under UNSCR 872 (5th October 1993). Dallaire arrived in Kigali as force commander on
22nd October, followed by an advanced party of 21 military personnel. In November, the
Secretary-General appointed Mr. Jacques Roger Booh Booh, former Minister for External
Relations of Cameroon, as his Special Representative in Rwanda. In June 1994 he was succeeded
by Mr. S.M. Khan (Pakistan).
The UNAMIR operation was planned in four phases. Phase one would end when the
transitional government was established (anticipated late-1993). Phase two would last for 90 days
and would involve the demobilisation of armed forces and the integration of a new national army.
During phase three, planned to last nine months, UNAMIR would establish and monitor a new
demilitarised zone and the integration of the armed forces and the gendarmerie would be
completed. In phase four, planned to take four months, UNAMIR would supervise the final stages
of the transitional arrangements in the build-up to the elections agreed in the Arusha talks.
Throughout all four phases the mission would assist in ensuring security in the capital, Kigali, and
provide security for the repatriation of refugees and displaced persons. It would also assist in the
co-ordination of humanitarian relief operations. Mission strength would build up to 2,548 in phase
two and decline to approximately 930 by phase four. UNOMUR would come under the command
of the new mission, but would continue its monitoring work along the border. A civilian police
contingent (CIVPOL) was also established.
However, a major obstacle was the failure to install the transitional government. Despite
this, and while expressing concern at the lack of progress, UNSCR 909 (5th April 1994) extended
the mandate of UNAMIR for a further six months. The next day witnessed the event that
projected the war into a vicious and decisive phase (i.e., the shooting down of the presidential
aircraft). The Belgian government withdrew its battalion from UNAMIR after its peacekeepers
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 87
were killed. On 20th April the Secretary-General informed the Security Council that, given the
situation, UNAMIR could not carry out its tasks. Three options were offered: (1) to massively
re-enforce UNAMIR; (2) to reduce it to a small group to remain in the capital under the force
commander, acting as an intermediary to secure a cease-fire; or (3) to withdraw altogether. Under
UNSCR 912 (21st April 1994), the second option was taken. With massacres continuing on a
large scale in Kigali, especially in the south, the Secretary General urged the Security Council to
consider taking more forceful action to restore law and order, though to do so would require a
much larger commitment than member states appeared willing to consider. Powerless to stop the
massacres, Boutros Ghali publicly referred to the massacres as genocide.
On 18th May 1994 UNSCR 918 imposed an arms embargo on Rwanda and expanded
UNAMIR's mandate to provide for the security and protection of refugees through the
establishment of secure areas, and to provide security for relief operations. Authorisation was
granted to expand the force to 5,500 troops (UNAMIR II). In UNSCR 935 (1st July 1994),
concern was expressed about reports of continued violations of international humanitarian law.
This resulted in the formation of a Commission of Experts (based in Geneva) to investigate the
violations. There were serious delays in deploying UNAMIR forces under its expanded mandate
of May 1994 (by the end-July 1994, less than 500 troops were deployed). Therefore, UNSCR 929
(22nd June 1994) accepted and authorised a French proposal to deploy a force (Operation
Turquoise), under Chapter VII of the Charter, tasked to establish a humanitarian protected zone in
south-west Rwanda, where there were an estimated 2 million internally displaced people. For
UNAMIR and for UNREO, the priority was to deal with the unprecedented humanitarian crisis in
the north-west and south-west of the country. The French troops withdrew as they had planned on
21st August, having done much to stabilise the situation in their zone in the south-west. However,
there some critics of the French intervention who asked if the motivation had been purely
humanitarian, or perhaps a blend of French domestic and foreign policy interests, and an effort
bolster the forces of the Hutu regime.
Although approved in May, UNAMIR only reached its full operational strength by
October, with 5,500 troops deployed in six sectors, including Kigali. Human rights field
operations were conducted by 100 officers, tasked to investigate violations of international law.
On 9th December 1994, the final report of the Commission of Experts concluded that there was
overwhelming evidence of acts of genocide against Tutsi by Hutu. Under UNSCR 955 (8th
November 1994) the Security Council established an International Tribunal for Rwanda to
prosecute those responsible for violations of international law. In early-1995, the Human Rights
Field Operation in Rwanda (HFOR) became fully operational and followed a strategy intended to
promote confidence-building and national reconciliation through attention to issues of justice and
human rights.
Increasing concern was expressed about those who incited people to flee from Rwanda and
threatened those seeking to return home. It was clear that many of the former political leaders and
the militias were determined to prevent people returning and apparently intended to mount an
armed invasion to regain power. There were reports in early-1995 that the forces of the former
Rwandese government were re-arming and the RPA tightened their own security policy. This
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 88
issue caused tension between the new government and UNAMIR, which was accused of doing
little to stop arms deliveries to former government forces in the camps in surrounding countries
Rwanda. A general arms embargo continued to apply to Rwanda. In April 1995, the government
decided to cordon off the eight remaining camps for internally displaced people in the south of the
country. At the largest of these (Kibeho), a large number of deaths occurred when an estimated
80,000 inhabitants tried to break out of the camp. Outside the country, the 1.4 million refugees in
eastern Zaire, especially around Lake Kivu in the Goma region, presented both a severe
humanitarian challenge and an explosive security situation. A joint technical team of UN DPKO
and UNHCR recommended international supervision of security in the camps but there was little
willingness by member states to supply personnel. The general situation was made more tense in
that the need to allow people to return to their homes was made very difficult by intimidation
within the camps and by the fear of reprisals on return.
Despite the alarming instability and violence that still continued, the context in which
UNAMIR was operating had changed. The full-scale war and the genocide had ended with the
establishment of a new government of national unity on 19th July 1994. The new government
raised questions about the role and future of UNAMIR. UNAMIR's mandate was extended for six
months from June to December 1995, but with troop numbers reduced from 5,000 to 1,800. The
government of Rwanda was asserting its sovereignty and responsibility for security, general
governance and reconciliation. Hence, UNAMIR's role was changed, with more emphasis on
supporting the construction of bridges, roads schools and providing transport for humanitarian
assistance.
Tension was heightening in the border areas and fears of infiltration from armed elements
of the former government continued. In a visit to the region in July 1995, Boutros Ghali
emphasised the dangers of instability in the whole of the Great Lakes region. The Security
Council decided to lift its arms embargo on Rwanda in August 1995 (UNSCR 1011), a decision
which was strongly objected to by Zaire because of the fear of increased tension and flow of
refugees. In response, the government of Zaire provoked a new refugee crisis when it decided to
begin the forced repatriation of refugees to Rwanda and Burundi, a move which threatened the
UNHCR policy of a safe, orderly and phased repatriation. By late-1995, however, it was evident
that the rate of return of refugees was slow because of continued misinformation and intimidation
in the camps by the militias of the former regime who wished to hold power in a community in
exile and, from this base, recapture power in Rwanda. This situation eventually, in the late-1996,
destabilised neighbouring Zaire when the refugee crisis there, linked to a corrupt and failing
government, provoked an armed rebellion in the east of the country.
Despite a general feeling throughout the international community that the mandate of
UNAMIR should be renewed in order to support the process of the organised return of refugees,
the government of Rwanda officially informed the SG that it did not wish the mandate to be
extended because it felt that the country no longer required a peacekeeping mission and that
priorities had shifted to the rehabilitation, reconstruction and development needs of the country.
When the mandate was renewed for the period from December 1995 to March 1996 it was for a
final period. UNAMIR completed its withdrawal from Rwanda by 19th April 1996. A reduced
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 89
HRFO remained, and the government of Rwanda agreed to the establishment of a United Nations
Office in Rwanda (UNOR),which would continue to support the processes of reconciliation, the
return of refugees, the strengthening of the judicial system and the rehabilitation of the country's
infrastructure.
The effectiveness of the UNAMIR mission and the general response of the international
community was inhibited from the beginning by a number of factors. It has been suggested that
an increasing feeling of “Africa fatigue” and “compassion fatigue” was beginning to affect the
judgements and motivations of the main powers in the UN system, and that this produced a
failure of political will to provide the mandate and the resources which an effective peacekeeping
operation would require. Particularly after the experience in Somalia, a more cautious attitude to
the potential of peacekeeping influenced the thinking of some politicians and policy-makers,
especially in the US. This had a paralysing effect in Rwanda. Just as the killing escalated to
genocide, the Security Council cut the peacekeeping force to less than 300 (in fact, over 400
stayed in Kigali), and when a new and larger force was authorised, it took up to six months to
organise their arrival in the country. Thus, by July 1994, three months after the killings began,
none of the UNAMIR II troops had arrived in Rwanda.
Assessment of Peacekeeping Role
The failure of the UN to react effectively has been thoroughly assessed and reported on
the UN, itself. The report is available on the UN homepage at the address listed in Table 5-1.
This led to calls for a range of reforms of peacekeeping, including better preparation for early and
rapid deployment. It was also clear from the Rwanda experience that the humanitarian agencies
of the international community were poorly prepared to respond. Here, too, a series of reforms
have been called for, relating to planning and preparation capabilities in advance of a crisis;
co-ordination of the efforts of the various agencies; and better understanding between the
military and civilian/humanitarian agencies.
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 90
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity. (Chapter 3, "Conflict Mapping and Conflict Tracking", pp.91-4;
and Chapter 5, "Case Study: Rwanda", pp. 133-9)
Harris, P. and B. Reilly (eds.) (1998), Democracy and Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for
Negotiators. Stockholm: International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)
(especially, D. Bloomfield, Yash Ghai and Ben Reilly, Chapter 2, "Analysing Deep-Rooted
Conflict", pp. 29-58)
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 91
LESSON 5
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Conflict mapping provides a technique for finding the solution to a conflict.
a. True
b. False
2. Conflict tracking involves:
a. multi-track intervention
b. field-based analysis of war-zones
c. following a conflict and up-dating information/understanding
3. The former colonial power in Rwanda was:
a. Britain
b. France
c. Belgium
4. The majority population in Rwanda is:
a. Twa
b. Hutu
c. Tutsi
5. Rwanda gained independence in:
a. 1952
b. 1962
c. 1972
6. Under colonial administration the key administrative and governmental posts were filled by:
a. Hutu
b. Tutsi
c. Twa
7. After independence, and in the period up to the early-1990s, there was a major displacement of
the Tutsi population who became refugees in neighbouring countries. Approximately
what % of the Tutsi population of Rwanda was displaced?
a. 10%
b. 15%
c. 50%
d. 80%
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 92
8. What was the name of the peace agreement signed by the conflict parties in Rwanda in 1993?
a. Harare Agreement
b. Arusha Agreement
c. Benin Agreement
9. Peacekeeping forces first arrived in Rwanda in:
a. 1990
b. 1992
c. 1993
d. 1994
10. Failure to deploy a larger peacekeeping force in time to prevent the violence of 1994 was
ascribed to:
a. “bureaucratic inertia” in New York
b. lack of information
c. “Africa fatigue” amongst the main powers
Answer Key: 1-False; 2-c; 3-c; 4-b; 5-b; 6-b; 7-c; 8-b; 9-c; 10-c
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 93
Exercise: Conflict Mapping
Aim: To enable the student to produce his/her own preliminary conflict map.
Method: Using the on-line sources identified in Table 5-1, conduct a brief conflict mapping exercise
using the mapping guide provided in this lesson. Do not attempt to develop a comprehensive map.
We suggest that you take either part A of the map (to produce a background briefing), or part C (to
provide a preliminary assessment of peacemaking activities). You may map one of the following
conflicts, or a conflict of your choice.
East Timor
Kosovo
Sierra Leone
Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 94
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LESSON 6
EARLY WARNING AND CONFLICT PREVENTION
1. Introduction
2. The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep”
Prevention
3. The Prevention of Violent Conflict: Cases and Organisations
4. Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP
In the past 20 years we have understood the need for military intervention where governments
grossly violate human rights and the international order. In the next 20 years we must learn
how to prevent conflict as well as how to intervene in them.
- Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General
Conflict, including ethnic conflict, is not unavoidable but can indeed be prevented. This
requires, however, that the necessary efforts are made. Potential sources of conflict need to be
identified and analysed with a view to their early resolution, and concrete steps must be taken
to forestall armed confrontation. If these preventive measures are superseded by a sharpening
of the conflict, then an early warning must be given in time for more rigorous conflict
containment to take place.
- Max van der Stoel, Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe High
Commissioner on National Minorities
War represents the failure of diplomacy.
- Annonymous
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 96
LESSON OBJECTIVES
In this lesson conflict prevention and preventive diplomacy is defined as an important part
of the wider conflict resolution process. The theoretical basis of conflict prevention is explained as
are the ideas of early warning and specific factors which may prevent the outbreak of violent conflict
are discussed. Organisations which have conflict prevention policies are identified and the first ever
deployment of peacekeeping force in a conflict prevention role, UNPREDEP in Macedonia, is
examined as a case study.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Define the meanings and uses of the terms “conflict prevention” and “early warning”;
Discuss the theory that informs these meanings, including the ideas of “light” and “deep”
preventors of conflict;
Trace the cases where conflict prevention strategies have been applied;
Identify the organisations that have a capacity for conflict prevention;
Consider the use of a conflict prevention policy in Macedonia where the first preventive
deployment of peacekeeping forces took place;
Explore the strengths and weaknesses of a conflict-prevention strategy.
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 97
1. Introduction

Conflict Prevention (or, preventive diplomacy) is the idea that action should be taken to
prevent violent conflicts from breaking out in the first place, rather than responding only once
violence has broken-out. We can compare conflict prevention to fire-fighting: the designers of
buildings hope that the occupants will not start fires, but they do not place all their trust on the
good sense of the occupants; instead, they invest in sprinklers, fire alarms, fire extinguishers, and
other measures designed to prevent the risk of fires raging out of control that is, they introduce
preventors of fire.
Following the end of the Cold War, the combination of a growing number of complex
conflicts and improved prospects for great power co-operation led to new interest in conflict
prevention. In his 1992 report An Agenda for Peace, United Nations Secretary- General Boutros
Boutros-Ghali, argued that one of the UN's central aims must be "to seek to identify at the
earliest possible stage situations that could produce conflict, and try through diplomacy to
remove sources of danger before violence results". The report defined preventive diplomacy as
"action to prevent disputes from arising between parties, to prevent existing disputes from
escalating into conflicts and to limit the spread of the latter when they occur." It suggested that
preventive diplomacy could involve: measures to build confidence; fact-finding missions; early
warning of potential conflicts; the preventive deployment of peacekeeping or deterrent military
forces; and the establishment of demilitarised zones.
In this Lesson, we will consider the theoretical basis for conflict prevention. We will also
examine the organisations that are developing mechanisms of early warning and conflict
prevention. Many efforts have been made to put conflict prevention into practice. The UN
Secretary-General, for example, sends Special Representatives to potential conflict zones to
gather facts, explore options for preventive diplomacy and mediate between parties. In the first
example of its kind, the UN Security Council authorised the deployment of the UNPREDEP
preventive peacekeeping force to Macedonia before any violence had broken out. Many regional
organisations are involved in conflict prevention activities. The Organisation for Security and
Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), for example, has deployed missions to potential conflict areas
in Europe and the former-Soviet Union, and it has established a High Commissioner on National
Minorities (HCNM) to prevent violent inter- ethnic conflict. Non-governmental organisations
have also been involved in conflict prevention activities, often seeking to support “grass roots”
peace organisations and conflict resolution processes. A new approach to peacekeeping emerged
in 1993 with the deployment of a small mixed military and civilian force in Macedonia
(UNPREDEP), to prevent the conflict in other areas of former-Yugoslavia from spreading into
that small country. We examine this case study in the Lesson.
2. The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep” Prevention
Active measures to prevent conflict can be divided into two types. One is aimed at
preventing situations with a clear capacity for violence from degenerating into armed conflict.
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 98
This is called light prevention. Its practitioners do not necessarily concern themselves with the
root causes of the conflict, or with remedying the situation that led to the crisis which the
measures address. Their aim is to prevent latent or emerging conflicts from becoming severe
armed conflicts. Examples of such action are diplomatic interventions, long-term missions and
private mediation efforts.
Deep prevention, in contrast, aims to address the root causes, including underlying
conflicts of interest and relationships. At the international level, this may mean addressing
recurrent issues and problems in the international system, or a particular international
relationship which lies at the root of conflict. Within societies, it may mean engaging with issues
of development, political culture, and community relations. In the context of post- cold war
conflicts, light prevention (or, operational prevention) generally means improving the tactical
capacity to intervene in conflicts before they become violent; deep prevention (or, structural
prevention) means building domestic, regional or strategic capacity to manage conflict.
2.1 Early Warning
Early warning aims to monitor particular areas of potential conflict, and seek ways to act
early enough to thwart potential conflict. There are two tasks involved here: first, identification
of the type of conflicts and location of the conflicts that could become violent; second,
monitoring and assessing their progress with a view to assessing how close to violence they are.
One line of approach aims to establish the circumstances under which wars are likely to
take place. The Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict suggests a number of
indicators of conflict proneness in states, listed below.
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 99
1
The Carnagie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict (1997), Final Report, Preventing Violent
Conflict, New York: Carnegie Corporation, p. 44.
2
T.R. Gurr (1998), Peoples versus States, Washington, DC: USIP, p. 120.
Indicators of States at Risk
1
Demographic pressures (high infant mortality, rapid population change including refugee
flows, high population density, youth bulge, food or water shortage, ethnic groups sharing
land, environmental pressures)
Lack of democratic practices (human rights violations, criminalisation, de-legitimisation
of the state)
Regimes of short duration
Ethnic composition of the ruling elite differing from that of the population at large
Deterioration or elimination of public services
Sharp and severe economic distress (uneven economic development along ethnic lines,
lack of trade openness)
A legacy of vengeance seeking group vigilance
Massive, chronic or sustained human flight
Using data from his Minorities at Risk project, Ted Gurr identified three factors that
affect the proneness of a communal group to rebel: collective incentives, capacity for joint
action, and external opportunities. Under these general indicators can be found seven risk factors
which have had significant positive correlation with ethnopolitical rebellions. These are listed
below.
Risk Factors For Ethnopolitical Rebellion
2
Group Incentives for Initiating Collective Action
History of lost political autonomy
Active economic and political discrimination against the group
History of state repression
Group Capacity for Sustained Collective Action
Strength of group identity
Extent of militant group mobilization
Group Opportunities for Collective Action
Number of adjacent countries in which armed conflicts are underway
Active support from kindred groups in neighbouring countries
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 100
There are possible responses to these situations in specific cases. In terms of the theory of
early warning and conflict prevention, the indicators suggested above might call upon light
preventors, including:
1. flexible and accommodating state actions and strategies;
2. moderate “communal” actions and strategies on the part of the leaders of challenging
groups;
3. mutually de-escalatory “built-in mechanisms” of conflict management.
Deep preventors include:
1. adequate political institutions and good governance
2. cohesive social structures;
3. opportunities for groups to develop economically and culturally;
4. the presence of accepted legal or social norms capable of accommodating and peacefully
transforming these formations.
For example, research on ethnicity suggests that preventors of ethnic conflict include:
1. federal structures;
2. consociational systems;
3. multi-culturalism;
4. elite accommodation;
5. social mobility;
6. policies of social inclusion.
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 101
Table 6-1 outlines the main levels where factors generating conflict are identified. Alongside
these, possible preventors are listed.
Table 6-1: Factors Generating Conflict and Possible Preventors
PREVENTORS OF NON-INTERSTATE CONFLICT
Factors Generating Conflict Possible Preventors
Global Level
Inappropriate systemic structures Changes in international order
Regional Level
Regional diasporas Regional security arrangements
State Level
Ethnic stratification
Weak economies
Authoritarian rule
Human rights abuse
Consociational
politics/federalism/autonomies
Development
Legitimacy, democracy
Rule of law, human rights
monitoring/protection
Societal Level
Weak societies
Weak communities
Polarised attitudes
Strengthening civic societies/institutions
Round-tables, workshops, community
relations
Cross-cultural work
Elite/Individual Level
Exclusionist policies Stronger moderates
Gurr's study of minorities at risk shows that the time-lag between the first manifestations
of organised protest and the onset of violent action is a matter of years, with an average of 13
years in liberal democracies. Clearly there is plenty of time for remedial action to be seriously
undertaken.

2.2 Light Intervention: Crisis Management and Preventive Diplomacy

A number of policy options are available for light prevention. They range from official
diplomacy (mediation, conciliation, fact-finding, good offices, peace conferences, envoys, conflict
prevention centres, hot lines) to non-official diplomacy (private mediation, message-carrying and
creation of back-channels, peace commissions, problem-solving workshops, conflict resolution
training, round-tables) to peace-making efforts by local actors (church-facilitated talks, debates
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 102
between politicians, cross-party discussions). Powerful states are also able to apply positive and
negative inducements in an effort to twist the arms of governments, strengthen moderate leaders
and counteract the influence of extremists. This includes a range of political measures (mediation
with muscle, mobilisation through regional and global organisations, attempts to influence the
media); economic measures (sanctions, emergency aid, conditional offers of financial support);
and military measures (preventive peacekeeping, arms embargoes, demilitarisation).
3. The Prevention of Violent Conflict: Cases and Organisations

The aim of prevention is to strengthen likely preventors and reduce likely causes of war or
mass violence. While recognising that the prevention of violent conflict is primarily a matter for
indigenous peacemakers and peace builders within the potential conflict area,
outsiders can play an important supporting role.

An example where the international environment has had positive effects on proneness to
violent conflict has been the citizenship conflicts in the Baltic States. The secession of Estonia,
Latvia, and Lithuania may have given rise to armed conflicts, both between the new states and
Russia (or the former-Soviet Union), and between the Baltic and Russian citizens in the Baltic
States. In Estonia, the OSCE High Commissioner, Max van der Stoel, intervened over the
threatened secession in 1993 of Narva in Estonia. The citizens of Narva were mostly Russians
who felt that they would become disenfranchised and disempowered. He was supported by an
OSCE long-duration mission based in three cities, which held extensive consultations with a wide
range of parties. Western governments, the OSCE and the Council of Europe called for
amendments to the contested citizenship law, and the EC called for consultation and restraint. In
response, Estonian President Meri submitted the Estonian legislation to the OSCE and the Council
of Europe for comments, and he forwarded the proposed amendments to the Estonian parliament.
He also set up a Round Table to promote dialogue between the ethnic groups, and made it clear
that there was no intention of expelling non-citizens. He went on to co-opt members of the
Russian elite by granting citizenship to industrial and political leaders, and allowed non-
Estonians to vote in local elections. These de-escalatory steps proved sufficient to defuse the
crisis. The Russian-speakers remained divided, but the majority of them saw their best hopes for
the future in participating in the Estonian economy, which had better prospects of development
and trade with the West than that of Russia. The modified Law on Aliens was adopted and
gradually attention shifted from citizenship to economic issues.

In Latvia, a similar crisis over citizenship quotas emerged in 1994, and became serious as
the Russian government refused to withdraw its troops from the country. It was eventually
defused in 1994 following a visit by President Clinton to Riga, a US-Russian summit, a Russian
agreement to withdraw its troops, and Western pressure on Latvia to revise its citizenship quotas.
The Estonian outcome can be attributed to a combination of “light” and “deep” prevention.
On the “light” side, the effective diplomatic interventions of Max van der Stoel and others,
combined with the moderate positions taken by the Estonian President, de-escalated the
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 103
crisis. At a deeper level, the membership of all the concerned parties in the OSCE, and their
acceptance of OSCE standards on citizenship and minority rights, created a legitimate framework
for consultation and mediation. Both the Baltic States and the Russian Federation sought entry
into European institutions; this gave European institutions some weight in the conflict. Crucially,
the West, the Baltic States and the Russian government were keen to avoid an armed conflict, but
to be effective this wish had to be translated into practical measures and bridge-building
institutions in the Baltic States. Even then, the Latvia case demonstrated that the OSCE could still
fail to prevent escalation, and that high-level diplomatic interventions and bargaining would
sometime be needed.

In all three cases, powerful third parties transformed an asymmetric conflict by balancing
the relationship between the parties, introducing a measure of restraint and facilitating negotiation.
The intervention of the OSCE High Commissioner was convenient, and created time and political
space for political movement. Finally, the compromise over the central citizenship issue allowed
the situation to be redefined in terms of access to economic opportunities instead of as an
ethno-political struggle for control of the state.

3.1 The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)

The OSCE is perhaps the best example of a co-operative security order that combines
elements of “deep” and “light” prevention. On the one hand, it is a regime with wide geographical
coverage, based on a common set of principles and norms including recognition of state
sovereignty and minority rights. What makes it remarkable is the agreement of member states that
"the commitments undertaken in the field of the human dimension...are matters of direct and
legitimate concern to all participating states and do not belong exclusively to the internal affairs of
the state concerned". By this agreement member states gave the OSCE a legitimate basis to
involve itself in ethnic and minority disputes.

The OSCE states have also committed themselves to "identify the root causes of tension"
and "provide for more flexible and active dialogue and better early warning and dispute
settlement." These commitments have been institutionalised in powers delegated to the
Chairman-in-Office, the Committee of Senior Officials, the Conflict Prevention Centre in Vienna
(which manages long-duration missions), and the High Commissioner on National Minorities and
his staff. The High Commissioner has undertaken a preventive role in many disputes involving
minorities.

3.2 The European Union and the Council of Europe

The European Union (EU) and the Council of Europe are also deeply involved in policies
which impact on conflict prevention, even if they are not specifically designed for the purpose.
The EU, at its Lisbon Council, proposed improving its capacity to tackle problems at their roots in
order to anticipate the outbreak of crises and contribute to the prevention and settlement of
conflicts. The EU has undertaken “deep” measures through: (1) support for economic
infrastructure and economic development, measures to strengthen democracy and the rule of law;
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 104
and (2) through its structured Europe, Partnership and Cooperation Agreements and the Stability
Pact. It is also involved, with mixed results, in “light” conflict prevention through the Common
Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), the International Court for Former-Yugoslavia, economic
sanctions, policy on recognition, and its diplomatic presence in Africa, the Mediterranean, and the
Middle East.

3.3 Other Regional Organisations

Several regional organisations have committed themselves to prevention in principle,
although in each case local regional politics and political culture have influenced how the concept
is interpreted. ASEAN, for example, has set up a Regional Security Forum which aims to preserve
the consensus of the South-East Asian governments and prevent inter- state conflicts; it is
implicitly part of the regime that the states do not involve themselves in one another's internal
conflicts. The organisation helped to promote a settlement in Cambodia and sponsored significant
initiatives in relation to the Spratly Islands dispute. Although, when the conflicts involve
separatism, there has been more inclination to avoid conflict than to address or resolve it.

The OAU introduced the African Mechanism Apparatus for Preventing, Managing and
Resolving African Crises at its 1993 summit; the procedure allows the OAU Secretary General to
undertake mediation and fact-finding missions and to send special envoys to conflict-prone areas.
It was activated in the same year in Brazzaville-Congo, where an ethnically-based post-election
conflict had broken-out, already with some violence. Secretary-General Salim appointed
Mahmoud Sahnoun as Special Representative to mediate between the parties, with the agreement
of the Congo government. Sahnoun's intervention led to negotiations in Gabon, a cease-fire,
disarmament of militias and an agreement on fresh elections over disputed seats. The mechanism
has yet to be invoked in a situation where some violence has not broken-out.

In Latin America, the OAS set up machinery to support democracies threatened with
military coups to protect human rights and to monitor elections. This can be seen as a form of
preventive diplomacy, although the strong consensus on non-intervention has limited the
institutionalisation of an explicit conflict prevention policy.
3.4 The United Nations

The United Nations is also committed to conflict prevention. The UN Secretary General
has powers under Article 99 of the Charter to "bring to the attention of the Security Council any
matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security."
The Secretary-General frequently operates through Special Representatives. A notable example
was Ahmedou Ould Abdullah's work in Burundi, which facilitated power-sharing arrangements
and helped to calm the situation after the death of the Hutu president, Ntarymira, in an air crash in
1994. Although some steps to establish a capacity for prevention have been taken, the attention of
the Secretary General and the Security Council is mainly focused on conflicts that are already
violent, and the UN system's capacity is still regarded as weak. For example, only 40 officials in
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 105
the UN secretariat were involved with prevention in 1995. The UN lacks sufficient institutional
machinery and personnel to turn its stated commitment to preventive diplomacy into an effective
reality. Moreover, a significant number of states hold serious reservations about an international
prevention regime, on the grounds of state sovereignty and non- intervention. International
Financial Institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are now
playing an increasingly central role in deep prevention through the tying of financial assistance to
conditions of good governance.

The Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict is a strong advocate of
enhancing the role of the United Nations. It has recommended the following reforms:

More frequent use of Article 99 of the UN Charter to bring potentially violent situations to
the attention of the Security Council.
Greater use of good offices to help defuse developing crises.
More assertive use of the convening power of the Office of the Secretary General to
assemble “friends” groups to help co-ordinate the international response.
Encouragement of member governments to contribute to the Fund for Preventive Action,
established by the Norwegian government in 1996 for the use of the Secretary General.
The Secretary General should use the fund to expand the pool of people to serve as envoys
and special representatives and to provide resources for training and support of their
missions.
The convening, by the Secretary-General, of at least one meeting with the heads of major
regional organisations during each term of office to discuss potential violence in the
regions and possible preventive strategies.
The formation of a private sector advisory committee to draw more systematically on the
expertise and insights of civil society for preventive action.
The integration of UNICEF, UNDP, and UNHCR's concerns for conflict prevention with a
more activist UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, to strengthen the UN's role in
early warning, protection of human rights, and conflict prevention.

4. Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP

4.1 Macedonia

After the war broke out in Yugoslavia, there were strong grounds for fearing that it could
spread to the southern Balkans. This was an area of mixed peoples, weak states and contested
governments. The Kosovo conflict, which had triggered the disintegration of Yugoslavia in 1987,
remained intense; Macedonia was a weak state; and Albania's chaotic transition from communism
gave many grounds for concern. In Kosovo, the Albanian community (90% of the population) had
been living under Serb police rule since the withdrawal of autonomy in 1989. It was feared that an
ignition of the ethno-national conflict could lead to a domino effect, destabilising Macedonia,
drawing in Albania, and starting a new Balkan war in which Greece and Turkey might enter on
opposite sides. It was a sign of the seriousness with which this was taken that President Bush
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 106
warned President Milosevic in 1992 that the US was prepared to use force against Serbian troops
in the event of any conflict caused by Serbian action; and in 1993, President Clinton repeated
President Bush’s warning to Milosevic.

In response to these warning signs, the UN deployed its first preventive peackeeping
operation in Macedonia in January 1993. UNPREDEP consisted, initially, of 500 Canadians, later
replaced by 700 Scandinavians. (In July the US sent 300 troops to UNPROFO.) Whether
Milosevic ever intended to threaten Macedonia is unclear; the UN force did at least check a
number of probes by Serbian forces along the Macedonian border. UNPREDEP also became
involved, indirectly, in the internal ethnic relations of Macedonia. A UN Special Representative
attached to the force held regular meetings, with the political parties, convened national youth
meetings and undertook a number of projects to encourage bridge-building, NGO formation and
awareness of international human rights instruments.

The Government also invited an OSCE Mission which participates in these meetings and
monitors the internal, as well as the regional, political situation. The High Commissioner on
National Minorities has frequently visited Macedonia to discuss educational and employment
policies, citizenship and local government; the government has adopted some of his suggestions.
His visit in February 1995, after lives were lost in a demonstration over the unauthorised Albanian
university at Tetovo, reduced tensions. He also contributed to an inter-ethnic round-table.

NGOs such as the Catholic Relief Services, the Center for Inter-Ethnic Relations, and
Search for Common Ground have initiated educational projects, problem-solving workshops,
conflict resolution training, and media projects designed to build bridges. These measures help to
build cross-community relations, and provide some prevention capacity, although their breadth of
coverage is inevitably limited. While ethnic relations remain tense and society remains polarised
along ethnic lines, and even if the long-term future remains uncertain, major internal violence has
been averted.
4.2 The United Nations Preventive Deployment Force

The United Nations Preventive Deployment Force (UNPREDEP) was created under
UNSCR 983 of 31 March 1995, as part of a general restructuring of UN peacekeeping forces in
former-Yugoslavia. It was constituted as a separate peacekeeping force with headquarters in
Skopje, Macedonia. Although a variety of ethnic groups (including Rhomas, Serbs, Turks and
Vlachs), had a series of claims and aspirations which they felt were not being adequately
addressed within the existing political system, the main rift was between ethnic Macedonians and
ethnic Albanians. According to the 1994 census, these two groups constituted 67% and 23% of
the population, respectively. Although the census had been monitored and organised by the
Council of Europe and the European Union, these figures were disputed by ethnic Albanian
leaders, who felt that the true proportion of Albanians in the population was higher. In addition,
the results of elections held in October 1994 were also challenged by opposition groups, though
these also had been monitored by the Council of Europe and the OSCE. These opposition groups
refused to participate in the Parliament, resulting in a fragile democracy which, in the context of
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 107
the unstable economic conditions prevailing in the country, felt unable to accommodate to the
demands of ethnic Albanians. These demands included recognition of distinctive status as a
constituent nation; the conduct of University-level education in the Albanian language and the
foundation of an Albanian language University; proportional representation in significant public
institutions; and recognition of Albanian as a second language.

While the ruling coalition under President Gligorov passed a number of reforms
supporting democratisation, the substantial demands have not been met. When the Government of
Macedonia requested the continuation of UNPREDEP, following the termination of the missions
in Bosnia and Croatia, the need was explained primarily in terms of external security concerns:
namely the need for the normalisation of relations with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; the
need for stability and sustainability around the peace process in Bosnia and Herzegovina; and the
need for Macedonia to build up its own indigenous defence capabilities. From 1 February 1996,
the mandate was renewed and UNPREDEP became an independent mission reporting directly to
New York. Although the internal situation has not been resolved, it is generally agreed that this
experiment in preventive deployment has been successful and that UNPREDEP has made a
significant contribution to stability in the region, and to the security of Macedonia. For example,
in 1994 the assessment of the US State Department was that there was a significant risk of the
conflict spreading if there was a mass exodus of ethnic Albanians from the Kosovo region of
Serbia, through Macedonia and on to the Greek border. Such a move would threaten conflict
between Greece and Turkey; but regular monitoring by UNPREDEP suggested that the risk was in
fact low. Similarly, some observers believed in March 1995 that military tension in the Southern
Balkans was high and that a number of Serb units were massed along the border with Macedonia.
UNPREDEP was able to authoritatively deny this and thus contributed to de-escalation.
UNPREDEP's border identification and verification also contributed significantly to
confidence-building. Macedonia's border with Serbia was the subject of long-standing dispute.
The UN commander proposed an administrative UN boundary, initially called the “Northern
Limit of the Area of Operations” (NLAOO), but generally referred to as the “UN Line”. By July
1994, both Serbian and Macedonian patrols had come to respect this boundary, which had become
a de facto buffer zone between potential conflict parties.

By the late-1990s, Macedonia and the UNPREDEP deployment were radically affected by
the worsening situation in Kosovo. From March 1999, as the efforts to secure a negotiated
settlement to the conflict in Kosovo stalled, Macedonia became the base for the build-up of
heavily armed NATO troops. This was to serve as a base for a force to “extract” OSCE observers
from Kosovo, but proved to be the spearhead force that re-took Kosovo on the ground from
Serbian forces. Some have claimed that the use of NATO in Macedonia has effectively destroyed
the only example of preventive diplomacy, namely UNPREDEP, and that NATO overshadowed
UNPREDEP. In February of 1999, China, reacting against Macedonia's recognition of Taiwan,
vetoed the extension of UNPREDEPs mandate.

Nevertheless, the operation is widely regarded as successful. Some of the factors which are
said to have contributed to the success of UNPREDEP are: the presence of a US battalion in the
mission, signalling an American military and political interest; the presence of experienced Nordic
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 108
troops; and the continued monitoring of the military, political, economic and social situation,
which has provided an objective knowledge of events. This monitoring has enabled valuable
knowledge of risk and risk assessment to be developed, helping to counter rumour and the
potential for conflict escalation which it may have generated.


Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 109
Further Reading

Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham, and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary
Conflict Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 4, "Preventing Violent Conflict",
pp. 95-127)

Lund, M. (1996), Preventing Violent Conflicts. Washington, DC: United States Institute
of Peace.

Peck, C. (1998), Sustainable Peace: The Role of the United Nations and Regional Organisations
in Preventing Conflict. Lanham, NJ: Roman and Littlefield.


Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 110
LESSON 6
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ

1. The support for conflict prevention increased following the end of :
a. The Second World War
b. The Cold War
c. The Gulf War

2. Which of the following phrases best describes “light” or operational conflict prevention?
a. diplomatic, military, mediation or other interventions designed to arrest armed
conflict
b. the coverage of conflict in the media
c. long-term development policies

3. Which of the following phrases best describes “deep” or structural conflict prevention?
a. the strategic capacity to address the root causes of conflict
b. negotiations with elite leaders
c. the use of human rights monitors

4. Gurr identified seven risk factors that are positively correlated with the outbreak of armed
conflict. List them.

5. According to the research of Gurr, which of these statements is true?
a. "Tensions in communities can erupt into armed conflict with very little warning.
Effective conflict prevention is therefore very impossible."
b. "Conflicts typically have long gestation times. It is therefore possible to watch
them developing and to take preventive action to stop them becoming violent."

6. Who, amongst the following individuals, is associated with the effective use of conflict
prevention policies in the Baltic States?
a. Stephen Stedman
b. Michael Lund
c. Max van der Stoel

7. The UN Secretary General has powers under which article of the Charter to "bring to the
attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the
maintenance of international peace and security"?
a. Article 9
b. Article 19
c. Article 99


Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 111
8. The first preventive deployment of UN peacekeeping forces took place in:
a. Kosovo
b. Estonia
c. Macedonia

9. List two reasons that help to explain the success of UNPREDEP.

10. Name at least three organisations (other than the UN), which have developed policies
and capacities for conflict prevention.
Answer Key: 1-b; 2-a; 3-a; 4-history of political autonomy, active economic and political
discrimination against the group, history of state repression, strength of group identity, extent of
militant group mobilisation, number of adjacent countries in which armed conflicts are underway,
active support from kindred groups in neighbouring countries; 5-b; 6-c; 7-c; 8-c; 9-presence of US
troops, balance of US troops with experienced Nordic peacekeepers, continued monitoring of
militar/politcal/economic/social situations; 10-OSCE, OAU, ASEAN, OAS, European Union,
Council of Europe
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 112
3
S. Stedman (1995), “Alchemy for a New World Order: Overselling Preventive Diplomacy”, Foreign
Affairs, 74, May/June, pp. 14-20.
Exercise: Assessing the Strengths and Weaknesses of Conflict Prevention Strategies
Objective: To encourage the student to develop a better understanding of conflict prevention
through an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of its capabilities.
Method: The UN is not equipped to establish a military presence on the ground in a crisis.
Conflict prevention is severely disabled without a capacity for rapid response. There has been
increasing support for the establishment of a UN rapid reaction force of 5,000-10,000 troops so
that the UN can respond more effectively to emerging crises. However, conflict prevention has its
critics as well as its supporters. Below, we summarise a debate between a sceptic (Stephen
Stedman) and a proponent (Michael Lund). In this exercise you should carefully consider both
positions and, taking into account what you have learned about Macedonia in this lesson, draw-up
a balance sheet listing the main strengths and weaknesses of conflict prevention strategies.
Conclude your assessment with an evaluation of whether you think the UN should invest more, or
less, in developing a capacity for rapidly deploying preventive peacekeeping forces.
The Stedman-Lund Debate
Stedman
In an article published in Foreign Affairs, Stephen Stedman argued that the concept of preventive
diplomacy is oversold. Social scientists can pinpoint situations of risk, he argued, but not when
they will become violent. Actions designed to prevent conflict may trigger it. Prevention is,
therefore, risky and costly. Talking will achieve nothing: only the threat or use of massive force,
which risks prolonged intervention, will convince individuals such as Savimbi in Angola and
Karadzic in Bosnia. It is unlikely that Western leaders will be able to mobilize force before the
pictures of violence are on television. Providing aid and long-term development of itself can do
nothing to prevent genocides such as that in Rwanda, which was perpetrated by a group that
refused to cede power. To focus on prevention ignores the role that conflict plays in driving
political change. Some conflicts have to be intensified before they are resolved. Without
well-defined interests, clear goals and a judgement about costs and risks, conflict prevention will
mean that “one simply founders earlier in a crisis instead of later.”
3
vs.Lund
Michael Lund responded by arguing that Stedman has caricatured the arguments of proponents of
preventive diplomacy and chosen examples to overestimate the obstacles. Social scientists are
making useful prognostications of probable precipitants of violence, and this work should not be
ignored. Where early warnings have been taken seriously, they have enabled conflicts to be
prevented. Although the consequences of actions cannot always be predicted and may turn out to
be harmful, there are cases where preventive actions have been beneficial. There is a range of
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 113
4
M. Lund (1995), “Underrating Preventive Diplomacy” Foreign Affairs, July/August, pp. 160-163.
intermediate actions between talking and use of massive force, which Stedman ignores. For
example, US warnings to Milosevic were effective in preventing a spread of the Balkan wars
through to the end of 1997. Although early intervention has costs, they should be compared with
the costs of non-intervention and late intervention, which may be higher. The public is not
necessarily unwilling to endorse preventive diplomacy: the dispatch of US soldiers to join
UNPREDEP in Macedonia passed largely without comment. If existing ambassadors and field
staff were to turn their efforts to proactive responses to conflict, the issues might not even come to
the attention of the crisis decision-makers. The stakes in potential crises are too high to approach
them “with cavalier analyses” of a few unfortunate cases.
4
Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 114
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LESSON 7
PEACEKEEPING AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION
IN WAR ZONES
1. Introduction
2. The Contingency-Complementarity Model
3. Peacekeeping in the Contingency Model
4. Defining Peacekeeping
5. The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s
6. Criticisms of Peacekeeping in the 1990s
7. New Thinking About Peacekeeping
8. Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution
...[T]he situation of peacekeepers today is much like the situation of commanders on the
Western Front in 1916, who were bogged down in defensive operations. To push the analogy
somewhat, new tools of war were becoming available to commanders in 1916 that would
permit them to take the offensive if they could only adjust their thinking about how to use
their forces. In the same way, new techniques of peacekeeping, taken from conflict resolution
theory and civilian experience, now permit peacekeepers to take the offensive to restore peace.
- David Last, Theory, Doctrine and Practice of Conflict De-escalation in Peacekeeping
Operations
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 116
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson examines in detail the role of peacekeeping in active war zones. In a conflict
resolution perspective, peacekeeping is seen as one of several intervention strategies. Its role in
these strategies is explained with the use of a model referred to as the contingency-
complementarity model. The development of peacekeeping from the traditional missions of the
1950s to the more complex missions of the 1990s. The criticisms of these missions are reviewed,
as is the development of new thinking which led to the concept of peace support operations in the
1990s. Although this entails a more militarily robust form of peacekeeping the conflict resolution
role is still integral as peacekeeping forces need to find ways of promoting consent and relating
effectively to the civilian and political efforts to restore peace in the area of conflict.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Understand the contingency-complementarity model of conflict resolution and the role of
peacekeeping within it;
Discuss the stages of conflict escalation and de-escalation;
Trace the historical emergence of peacekeeping as a tool of peaceful conflict resolution;
Summarise the development and expansion of peacekeeping roles in the 1990s;
Discuss some of the criticisms of peacekeeping during this period and the consequent
development of new thinking about the nature of peacekeeping, including the emergence
of peace support operations doctrine;
Further explore the role and uses of conflict resolution techniques in peace support
operations, including consent-promoting techniques.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 117
1. Introduction
In this Lesson we focus on the role of peacekeeping in active war-zones. In order to do
this we need to understand that peacekeeping is one of several intervention strategies. Protracted
social conflicts are complex processes composed of many elements, each of which needs to be
addressed if we are to understand and resolve them. This includes the nature of the constituencies
involved, the interests of the parties, and their belief systems, perceptions, needs, and
relationships. Because many aspects need to be addressed, it is unlikely that any one approach to
conflict resolution will be able to deal with all of them. This insight gave rise to the idea that
effective third-party conflict intervention requires an increased understanding of the situation,
improved skills for dealing with them, and a comprehensive set of responses, including
peacekeeping.
Yet, the difficulty of intervening in on-going wars is exemplified in the ambivalent roles
of UN peacekeepers in Bosnia and Somalia. The former was tasked with protecting safe areas
without being given the means to do so, the latter was absorbed into a factional conflict as one of
the warring parties. As a result, in Bosnia the UN was accused of doing too little, in Somalia of
doing too much. In this lesson we consider some of the criticisms of the performance of
peacekeeping operations in recent years. We then trace how thinking about the roles of
peacekeeping has changed in response to these criticisms. Part of the response has been to
develop more robust concepts of peacekeeping whereby forces are adequately armed to protect
civilians, protect humanitarian aid convoys, take action against militias who ignore cease-fires or
who go against the provisions of peace agreements. Despite this “harder” definition of
peacekeeping, we consider how conflict resolution concepts and techniques are increasingly
relevant to peacekeeping.
2. The Contingency-Complementarity Model
A contingency approach to conflict intervention is based on the assumption that all
conflicts have both subjective and objective elements. Also, all conflicts go through an escalation
and de-escalation process which, depending on the level, exhibits either objective or subjective
elements more strongly. Intervention types such as negotiation, which focus on objective
elements of conflict, will be more effective at certain points in the conflict; intervention types
such as problem-solving, which focus more on subjective elements of conflict, will be more
effective at other points.
Working within the contingency approach means employing an appropriate intervention
strategy that has been shown to be most effective at particular points in a conflict process. This
knowledge is gained by in-depth analysis of past interventions. The more that such information is
available, the more likely interventions can be timely and appropriate. In response to the complex
nature of contemporary conflict, Ronald Fisher and Loreleigh Keashly developed the
contingency-complementarity model of conflict resolution.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 118
1
Adapted from R.J. Fisher and Keashly (1991), “The Potential Complementarity of Mediation and
Consultation Within a Contingency Model of Third Party Intervention”, Journal of Peace Research,
28(1): 29-42.
2.1 Stages of Conflict and Intervention Strategies
Fisher and Keashley’s model consists of four stages of conflict escalation: (1) discussion,
(2) polarisation, (3) segregation, and (4) destruction. (A de-escalation process moves in reverse
through the same stages.) While the stages appear linear and one-dimensional, this is not the
case. It is possible for parties in a conflict to go back and forth through the stages. Also, different
levels in a conflict and among parties may be at different stages of escalation or de-escalation.
Each stage is characterised by changes in six factors: models of communication, mutual
perceptions, the nature of the relationship between the conflict parties, emphasised issues,
possible outcomes and preferred strategies for intervention.
There is a range of peacemaking strategies that may be employed, including conciliation,
mediation, negotiation, arbitration, problem-solving and peacekeeping. (See Table 7-1
1
) The
appropriate type of intervention is “contingent” (dependent) upon the stage of escalation or
de-escalation that the conflict has reached and according to the emphasis that each gives to
objective and subjective aspects.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 119
TABLE 7-1: Stages of Conflict Escalation and De-escalation and Intervention Strategies
DIMENSIONS
Communication
Between
Disputants
Perceptions of
Disputants
Possible
Outcomes
Recognised by
Disputants
Disputants
Preferred
Method of
Conflict
Management
Third Party
Intervention
Strategy
STAGES
Discussion
Discussion and
Debate
Relatively
accurate, benign
Win-Win
Joint decision-
making
Conciliation (assist
communication)De
velopment Aid
(reduce inequity)
Polarisation
Reliance on
interpretation, less
direct interchange
Rigid and
simplified
negative
stereotypes
Mutual
compromise
Negotiation
Consultation
(improve
relationship)
Segregation
Use of threats
Negative
stereotypes cast
in terms of good
and evil
Win-Lose Defensive
competition
Mediation with
muscle (control
hostility)
Arbitration
Destruction
Absence of direct
communication
and attacks on the
enemy
Other party
viewed as non-
human
Lose-Lose
Outright
attempts at
self-
destruction
Peacekeeping
(control violence)
The model provides for the use of a variety of third party methods, rather than seeing these
as competing or contradictory. The use of multiple interventions (settlement- and
resolution-oriented) at different levels (unofficial/non-governmental and official/governmental)
and stages will be “complementary”: together, they will be more effective than a single strategy to
de-escalate the conflict. This work has reinforced the idea that conflict resolution should not
involve simple “one-dimensional” procedures, whether mediation initiatives or problem-solving
workshops, but should involve multi-track interventions.
For example, a peacekeeping intervention to control the outright violence of the
destruction phase of conflict should be followed up by a programme of third party involvement
that assists the parties – through mediation, conciliation, or other forms of third party intervention
– to move back down the stages of escalation. In the case of a civil war with ethnic or religious
dimensions, it might be appropriate to first control the violence with a powerful mediator, such as
a governmental representative from a major power, who can offer rewards and punishments to the
parties in order to pressure them to agree. Such an agreement will not last very long, yet, it will
temporarily improve the relationship between the parties so that other strategies can be employed.
The complementary strategy would offer to follow the coercive intervention with softer mediation
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 120
2
Diagram from A.B. Fetherston (1994), Towards a Theory of United Nations Peacekeeping. London: Macmillan, p. 151.
or a problem-solving approach to further improve the relationship and assist in resolving the root
causes of the conflict. In this model, third parties have a much deeper and more sustained
relationship with the conflict and the conflict parties.
Of course, there is a danger that models like the contingency-complementarity model
reduce conflict and third party intervention to static, predictable processes. It is important to
realise that each conflict has unique characteristics and the choice of intervention must be guided
by an informed analysis of the particular conflict, not simply matched to an idealised stage of
conflict as if following a recipe. Thus, the contingency-complementarity model must be flexible,
including the possibility of addressing multiple aspects of the conflict simultaneously, and
addressing the same aspect with different approaches over time and as its dynamic demands.
3. Peacekeeping in a Contingency Model
A.B. Fetherston has analysed the third party role of peacekeeping from within the
framework of a contingency-complementarity model. She suggests that Fisher and Keashley’s
model can be compared with the trilateral activities of the UN -- peacekeeping, peacemaking and
Peace Building. Peacemaking is basically equivalent to mediation and Peace Building and can be
seen as a broader version of consultancy (or consultancy can be seen as one aspect of Peace
Building). The underlying premise is that the UN has many of the tools required to use a
contingency model. Also, many of the activities that a contingency model points to are activities
that are being carried out by peacekeeping actors on the ground with or without a planned
programme.
3.1 Peacekeeping in the Escalation Sequence
Peacekeeping is used only after a conflict has escalated to Stage 4, when a conflict is
defined as destructive. Once conflicts reach the destructive stage, they become more difficult to
manage and require peacemaking, peacekeeping and Peace Building processes. Peacekeeping,
without co-ordination with other intervention strategies and without the motivation to contribute
to an intervention process beyond violence control, will not achieve a resolution outcome.
Within the contingency model, contemporary peacekeeping is part of a two-tiered
approach. This involves peacekeeping actors working in the area of operation at the micro-level
facilitating settlement processes or facilitating resolution activities (building trust, developing
co-operation and communication), and co-ordinating with peacemaking and Peace Building
efforts at the macro-level. (See Diagram 7-1
2
)
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 121
DIAGRAM 7-1: A Contingency Model Applied to Peacekeeping
This means that peacekeeping actors act as an interface between official (Track 1)
peacemaking efforts (e.g., official mediation) and unofficial (Track 2 or Track 3) Peace Building
efforts (including third party consultancy and supporting/co-ordinating local Peace Building
activities). Three roles are important here and relate to the expansion of peacekeeping activities:
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 122
1. the role of conflict control, which provides the base level activity for peacekeeping and
precedes the application of either of the other two roles;
2. the facilitation of an atmosphere that is conducive to negotiations and settlement and, in
the long-term, movement toward resolution;
3. the facilitation of an actual settlement and resolution process.
Because of the unstable security in war-zones, it makes sense for military peacekeepers to
co-ordinate activities on the ground in the early stages of the de-escalation process, which relates
to the first role. This may be seen as pre-Peace Building, with peacekeeping laying the
groundwork for later, more direct efforts once a stable situation has been achieved. The second
and third roles are more limited for military and civilian actors at the micro-level. While they
may engage in settlement and resolution activities, the mediation of settlement packages or the
implementation of a large-scale socio-economic programme usually takes place at the
macro-level.
Once peacemaking and Peace Building at the micro-level become significant in the minds
of military and civilian actors, it is possible to carry out such activities in a co-ordinated way and
it is possible to train military and civilian peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel to fulfil these
roles. Finally, in peacekeeping practice, the roles do not function in a vacuum, but must respond
to the needs of the parties in the conflict; that is, they must co-ordinate local initiatives and
become part of a bottom-up process (see Lesson 8).
4. Defining Peacekeeping
The official United Nations account of peacekeeping, The Blue Helmets, defines
peacekeeping as follows: “an operation involving military personnel, but without enforcement
powers, undertaken by the United Nations to help maintain or restore international peace and
security in areas of conflict”. Peacekeeping is a function of the UN, but there are occasions when
it is used by international and regional organisations. The essence of peacekeeping can be seen in
operations that pre-dated the formation of the UN in 1945. For example, after the First World
War multinational military bodies were used to establish and administer the new frontiers of
Europe agreed by peace treaties after the war. During this time, the League of Nations also
conducted activities that were comparable to peacekeeping. However, since 1945 peacekeeping
has been the technique most frequently used by and associated with the UN to terminate conflicts
and establish peace, so much so that the organisation was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1988
for its peacekeeping activities.
Peacekeeping is not mentioned in the UN Charter, yet it is often described as falling
between Chapter VI and Chapter VII. Peacekeeping operations have been described by Dag
Hammarskjöld as “Chapter 6 ½ initiatives”. Chapter VI proposes that parties to a dispute “shall,
first of all, seek a solution by negotiation, enquiry, mediation, conciliation, arbitration, judicial
settlement, resort to regional agencies or arrangements, or other peaceful means of their own
choice.” Chapter VI goes on to state that “The Security Council shall, when it deems necessary,
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 123
call upon the parties to settle their dispute by such means.” Chapter VII gives the Security
Council power to enforce decisions, including the use of armed forces if necessary, to maintain or
restore international peace and security. Article 99 gives the Secretary General power to carry out
“good offices missions”, including fact-finding and inquiry, to encourage hostile parties to seek a
negotiated settlement. While the UN was involved in peacekeeping as early as 1948, the first
explicitly labeled peacekeeping mission was the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF I),
deployed in 1956 in response to the Suez crisis, after British and French forces invaded Egypt.
UNEF I served as a precedent for all subsequent missions. It established a set of principles that
still define the essence of peacekeeping. The principles, defined by UN Secretary General Dag
Hammarskjöld and, and Canadian Lester B. Pearson (General Assembly President 1952-1953),
were:
1. the principle of the consent of the parties to the dispute for the establishment of mission;
2. the principle of non-use of force except in self defence;
3. the principle of voluntary contributions of contingents from small, neutral countries to
participate in the force;
4. the principle of impartiality;
5. the principle of control of peacekeeping operations by the Secretary General.
These principles have been contested and challenged, particularly in the debate about the
nature and efficacy of peacekeeping in post-Cold War conflicts. However, they proved durable
enough over a period of 30 years for Brian Urquhart to describe the document in which they are
defined as “a conceptual masterpiece in a completely new field, the blue print for a non-violent,
international military operation”.
5. The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s
During the Cold War period, 13 peacekeeping operations were established (13 between
1948 and 1978 but none between 1978 and 1988). For most of these years, and in many missions,
peacekeeping was restricted to the monitoring of borders and buffer zones after cease-fires were
agreed. Typically, these operations were composed of lightly armed national troop contingents.
With the end of the Cold War came a dramatic increase in the number of peacekeeping
operations. In 1988, when the Cold War was coming to an end, there were only five operations in
the field: three in the Middle East, a small observer mission in Kashmir, and UNFICYP in
Cyprus. By December 1994, the eve of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the United Nations, 17
operations were deployed. Nine of these were “traditional” missions, while eight were
“multifunctional”, that is they were mandated to fulfil a wide variety of unfamiliar roles in, for
example, prevention (UNPREDEP in Macedonia), intervention in active war-zones (UNOMIL in
Liberia, UNPROFOR in Bosnia, UNOSOM in Somalia), as well as post-settlement Peace
Building (ONUSAL in El Salvador, UNTAC in Cambodia, ONUMOZ in Mozambique).
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 124
Thus, the increase in the number of peacekeeping operations in the post-Cold War world
has been accompanied by a change in their very nature, more specifically:
their function: the single function associated with traditional operations has evolved into a
multiplicity of tasks;
their application: operations have been established to respond to the new breed of conflict
in areas not previously recognised;
their composition: peacekeepers now come from a medley of sources (military, civilian
police, and diplomatic) nations and cultures.

Contemporary peacekeeping can be appropriately characterised as multilateral, multidimensional,
and multinational/multicultural.
5.1 Multilateral Peacekeeping
Multilateralism refers to the situation within an operation that involves a number of levels of
activity. Firstly, the operation has a military component, the land, naval and air forces contributed
by UN member states. It includes both armed and unarmed soldiers, the latter being military
observers. The military component is primarily responsible for such tasks as:
monitoring and verification of cease-fires;
cantonment, disarmament and demobilisation of combatants;
overseeing of the withdrawal of foreign forces;
mine awareness education and mine clearance;
provision of security for UN and other international activities in support of a peace
process.
Fundamentally, the military component serves in a (mutually) supporting role, maintaining a
secure environment in which the civilian components can work.
A civilian police component has become increasingly involved in peacekeeping operations,
playing an important role somewhere between the military and civilian actors. Operating under
authority from the UN Security Council, international police monitors assist in the creation of
secure environments and the maintenance of public order. Their tasks include:
public security responsibilities (law enforcement work, crowd control);
establishing and maintaining a judicial system;
monitoring, training, and advising local law enforcement authorities on organisational,
administrative, and human rights issues.
There is also a sizeable civilian component sometimes outnumbering the military
component. The civilian component can be subdivided into two main groupings. Firstly, there are
inter-governmental organisations (IGOs), or organisations that are mandated by agreements
drawn up between two or more states. This includes all UN agencies (e.g., UNHCR, WFP,
UNICEF, UNDP), regional organisations (e.g., OAU, OAS, OSCE), as well as the International
Committee of the Red Cross/Red Crescent (ICRC). Secondly, there are non-governmental
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 125
organisations (NGOs), national and international organisations that are constituted separately
from the government of the country in which they are founded.
In contrast to the strength of the military component, which lies in the effective coercive
influence it can exercise over belligerents, the civilian component’s factor of strength may be
diplomatic, economic, ideological, scientific and technical, humanitarian, and legal. Thus, the
civilian component can be further divided to include several sub-components:
a political element responsible for the political guidance of the overall peace process,
including assisting in the rehabilitation of existing political institutions and promoting
national reconciliation;
an electoral element that monitors and verifies all aspects and stages of an electoral
process and co-ordinates the technical assistance of the process, as well as educating the
public about electoral processes and helping to develop grass-roots democratic
institutions;
a human rights element that monitors the human rights situation, investigates specific
cases of alleged human rights violations, and promotes human rights;
a humanitarian element responsible for the delivery of humanitarian aid (food and other
emergency relief supplies), implementing refugee repatriation programmes, resettling
displaced persons, and reintegration of ex-combatants.
5.2 Multinational/Multicultural Peacekeeping
Multinationalism and multiculturalism reminds us that a peacekeeping force is assembled
by a multiplicity of troop-contributing nations, from Australia to Guinea Bissau, France to Nepal,
the United States to Uruguay. Additionally, the civilian component is derived from a diverse
range of nations. Each nation or agency comes to the operation with its own political and cultural
background, its varied understandings of the conflict situation, and its own diverse approaches
and techniques. (See Lesson 9.)
5.3 Multidimensional Peacekeeping
Contemporary peacekeeping missions are multidimensional: they incorporate tasks and
responsibilities beyond those associated with traditional peacekeeping. The post-1988
deployments are being re-defined under new forms of military doctrine seeking to elaborate the
principles under which they should operate; these operations are variously called
“multidimensional operations”, “second generation peacekeeping operations’, “wider
peacekeeping”, “second generation multinational forces”, or “peace support operations”.
Although there are a variety of ways in which their roles are classified by different authorities,
many current peacekeeping operations now include military, political, and humanitarian
functions. These functions are described in Table 7-2
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 126
Table 7-2: Military, Political and Humanitarian Functions of Post-Cold War Peacekeeping
FUNCTIONS OF POST-COLD WAR PEACEKEEPING
Military Political Humanitarian
Cease-fire observation and
monitoring
Maintaining buffer zones
Disarming warring factions
Regulating the disposition
of forces
Preventing infiltration
Preventing civil war
Verifying security
agreements
Supervising cantonment
Mine clearance
Training/re-forming
military units
Upholding law and order
Helping to establish viable
government
Helping to maintain
independent status
Coping/negotiating with
non-government entities
Election administration
Exercising temporary
authority
Providing security and
helping to re-establish
economic life for the local
populace
Management and
arbitration of local disputes
Confidence-building
measures
Training police forces
Protecting aid convoys
Protecting relief/delivery
workers
Providing humanitarian aid
Establishing, supporting
and protecting regional
safe havens and other
Protected areas
Assisting in refugee
repatriation
Monitoring refugee flow
Logistical support for
humanitarian projects
including transport,
medical and engineering
Verifying human rights
agreements
6. Criticisms of peacekeeping in the 1990s
While functions have diversified, the contexts and environments in which the missions are
deployed have also become more complex. Although there have been exceptions (for example,
ONUC in the Congo and UNIFIL in Lebanon), peacekeeping operations established since 1956
(under the Hammarskjold-Pearson principles) have generally operated in “permissive
environments” where they have the consent and support of host governments for their presence.
Increasingly, however, they have been deployed in internal wars or complex political emergencies,
defined as situations of civil and international war. In these situations consent may be partial, and
conditions of lawlessness and violence — where militias and paramilitary groups act
autonomously — mean that UN agencies are often confronted and opposed.
Between 1989 and 1994, peacekeeping became the most visible activity of the UN. By the
end of this period peacekeeping was also the most controversial activity which the UN engaged in.
There has been widespread criticism of the UN, sometimes on practical grounds but mainly,
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 127
and more fundamentally, on questioning the nature and viability of peacekeeping itself. These
critiques suggest that military, political, and humanitarian objectives should not necessarily be
inextricably combined and that peacekeeping should go “back to basics”, i.e. undertake the
relatively simple roles of classical (or traditional) peacekeeping. Others suggest that to survive and
to be relevant in the future, peacekeeping must be strengthened and re-defined so that it can
operate beyond the constraints of classical ( or traditional or first generation peacekeeping), in a
new mode of second generation capabilities suitable for the challenges of internal conflicts and
civil wars. Most recently, these new capabilities have been described as “peace support
operations”.
Many authorities have identified priorities where organisation reform is needed. Some
have distinguished between problems of readiness (mounting and deployment of the force) and
operational problems (continuous support in the field). At both levels, peacekeeping poses
complex logistical problems. For example, at its height UNOSOM II involved troops from 35
different nations. Command and control of military forces becomes highly complicated with this
degree of reliance on multinational forces.
Operations have suffered from unclear and ambiguous chains of command both within
missions and between the mission and the Secretariat in New York, which has overall
responsibility for the management of peacekeeping operations. It is widely thought that national
contingents sometimes refer to their capitals for orders rather than to the UN Force Commander or
to New York. These difficulties may be at least in part, the result of the lack of direction from the
centre in New York, and the failure to co-ordinate the activities of the main UN bodies involved
in managing peacekeeping operations. Additionally, communications between the military, the
civil/political and the humanitarian components of a mission can sometimes be a problem. There
is also a serious inadequacy in the training of many units sent on peacekeeping operations.
Reforms to improve the central management of UN peacekeeping from New York, to improve
co-ordination between New York and the field operations, and to develop central training
guidance and standards have been seriously considered and, to some degree, implemented in
recent years.
While some critics have pointed to organisational inefficiency, others have provided
damning accounts of the inefficiency and corruption of aspects of UN peacekeeping. In Cambodia
and Somalia, for example, there were complaints about lack of accountability when UN personnel
were themselves guilty of breaches of local or international law and abuse of the human rights of
local people. However, these criticisms should be set beside the many positive accounts offered by
contributing governments and by the United Nations Secretariat.
7. New Thinking About Peacekeeping in the 1990s
A number of publications have defined the new challenges for peacekeeping in the 1990s.
For example, John Mackinlay has argued that in semi-consensual and turbulent conflict
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 128
3
Wilkinson, P. (2000), “Sharpening the Weapons of Peace”, in T. Woodhouse and O. Ramsbotham
(eds.), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, London: Frank Cass, p. 71.
environments new concepts and training methods are needed. In the US, Presidential Decision
Directive 25 uses the term “peace operations” or “peace support operations” to cover the entire
spectrum of activities from traditional peacekeeping to peace enforcement. LCOL Philip
Wilkinson, who largely developed the new British doctrine, defined the idea of peace support
operations as follows
3
:
Peace Support Operations was a term first used by the military to cover both
peacekeeping and peace enforcement operations, but is now used more widely to embrace in
addition those other peace related operations, which include conflict prevention, peacemaking,
Peace Building, and humanitarian assistance. In British usage the military doctrine in which the
concept is defined was issued in 1998 as Joint Warfare Publication 3.05, and replaced the
earlier concept of Wider Peacekeeping (issued in 1994).
All military operations are conducted with a degree of restraint, be that only an
adherence to the Law of Armed Conflict or Geneva Conventions. What makes PSO distinct is
their impartial nature. PSO are neither in support of, nor against a particular party, but are
conducted in an impartial and even-handed manner. Rather than achieve a short-term military
victory, PSO are designed to enforce compliance with the operation’s mandate and to create a
secure environment in which civilian agencies can rebuild the infrastructure necessary to create
a self-sustaining peace. PSO force actions are based upon judgements of the degree of
compliance and/or non-compliance of the parties with the operation’s mandate and not against
any bias or predetermined designation. The conduct of a PSO force should be analogous to that
of a third party referee and should remain that way even if only one party consistently fails to
comply with the mandate and suffers the consequences. In peacekeeping (PK) mode, the level of
consent is such that the referee requires relatively few resources. In peace enforcement (PE),
however, the referee requires enough resources to enforce compliance with the mandate, no
matter how much the parties may object. But the referee must not become a party to the conflict.
Referee status requires a very different approach from that of a player whose ambition is to
defeat the other teams or teams. The operational plans for I/SFOR (in Bosnia and KFOR (in
Kosovo) all directed that military operations to enforce compliance should be conducted in an
impartial and even handed manner.
In Agenda for Peace (1992), UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali introduced the idea of
forming “peace enforcement units” which would be more heavily armed than traditional
peacekeeping forces and which would be on call from member states, equipped and prepared to
monitor and enforce cease-fires and even peace agreements. In order to achieve rapid
deployment, Boutros-Ghali requested that Governments make troops and resources available to
UN peace operations at short notice. These Standby Forces were not to be used for
peace-enforcement actions, but for Chapter VI-type operations. However, after consultation with
Member States in 1993 and 1994, the idea of the Standby Forces was limited to what is now
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 129
4
Annan, K. (1997), “Peace Operations and the UN”, Conflict Resolution Monitor, 1, Centre for Conflict
Resolution, Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford, pp. 25-32.
called, the “Standby Arrangements System (UNSAS)” -- which is, undoubtedly, a move towards
improving deployment efficiency and speed. The Nordic countries, the Netherlands and Canada
have been particularly active in their support for improving the rapid deployment of UN forces
through better stand-by arrangements of this kind.
For the future, UN peacekeeping missions may be smaller, but they are likely to be more
professionally organised, more efficiently deployed, and better prepared, trained and equipped
than before. At the national level, troop-contributing countries have made significant
improvements in the 1990s, and international training centres and programmes have emerged,
raising standards of training and producing codes of conduct. In New York, a Situation Centre
was established within the DPKO in 1993, an important improvement on the previous position
whereby UN headquarters was only accessible to peacekeepers in the field between 0900-1700
hours during normal working days. The Situation Centre now functions continuously, with a staff
of 24 who reports on the major operations to the UN Secretary General. A Lessons Learned Unit
was also established to record and analyse the experience gained on UN missions in order to
build-up institutional memory and to improve performance in future operations.
8. Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan pointed to the need for peacekeeping forces to find
new capabilities for what he refers to as “positive inducements” to gain support for peacekeeping
mandates amongst populations in conflict areas.
4
While he argues that future peacekeeping forces
will require a greater coercive capacity, reliance on coercion alone will be insufficient. This is
partly because the effect of coercion will erode over time, and partly because it is better to
attempt to influence the behaviour of people in conflict situations through the use of the “carrot”
rather than the “stick”. Thus, while coercion can restrain violence at least temporarily, it cannot
promote lasting peace; durable peace and sustainable solution require not only stopping the
violence but, crucially, “taking the next step”. For Annan, taking the next step means offering
positive incentives or inducements. Peacekeeping actors need to be able to make rewards viable
in the mission area. This concept of peacekeeping, which Annan sees as absolutely essential for
the future effectiveness of peacekeeping operations, brings peacekeeping squarely into the realm
of conflict resolution.
Therefore, the term peace support operations provides a doctrine that is relevant to the
post-Cold War strategic environment. It is intended to define a modus operandi for military
peacekeeping personnel in the future conduct of peacekeeping. In emerging doctrines of
peacekeeping, peace enforcement is significantly re-defined to have a place within a broader
framework of intervention options which, nevertheless, sees consent and Peace Building (not
victory) as end goals. In the latest British doctrine, for example, the vital division is between
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 130
5
Army of the UK (1998), Peace Support Operations. London: Joint Warfare Publications 3.05, 7-2, 7-
2, 7-8, and 7-12.
peace enforcement and war, with peacekeeping and peace enforcement operating on the correct
side of the impartiality line, and with the objective of sustaining or restoring consent in the
interests of the long-term demands of Peace Building. However, what defines the essence of
peace support here is the need to preserve not so much consent as impartiality.
It is evident from this approach that peace enforcement must contain two dimensions of
activity – one that brings it close to a state of war (i.e., it must be prepared for combat and have
an enforcement capability), while at the same time (in order not to breach the impartiality
principle) it must be capable of building consent to limit the necessity for enforcement of
compliance. If this is not done the prospect of being drawn into prolonged military enforcement
actions is more likely, which increases the danger, of “crossing the Mogadishu line”, that is of
taking sides and being drawn into the conflict directly (as the experience in Somalia
demonstrated). It is clear that unless there is serious engagement with the consent-promoting
dimension of peacekeeping and peace enforcement, which relates to the goals of conflict
resolution and post conflict peace-building, the new peacekeeping doctrine is fraught with danger
of becoming embroiled in warfare.
8.1 Consent-Promoting Techniques
To reduce the chances of this undesirable escalation, UK and US doctrines recognise the
importance of consent-promoting techniques in peacekeeping. These techniques are similar to
Kofi Annan’s idea of building and strengthening positive inducements in peace support
operations. The likelihood of using combat techniques will be reduced significantly if consent
and co-operation techniques are adequately developed.
The managing of consent – based on the principles of impartiality, legitimacy, mutual
respect, minimum force, credibility, and transparency – is related to the techniques of promoting
good communication, negotiation and mediation, and positive approaches to community relations
through an active civil affairs programme, amply resourced to win “hearts and minds”. Current
peace support doctrine
5
identifies six sets of techniques designed to maintain consent in conflict
areas where peacekeepers are deployed. They are particularly important because the military
element’s presence in the operational area does not always inspire local support for them.
Therefore, peacekeepers must spend more time increasingly engaged in consent-promoting
activities, right down to the individual level.
The techniques are: (a) negotiation and mediation; (b) liaison; (c) civilian affairs; (d)
community information; (e) public information; and (f) community relations. The main objective
of such activities is to provide good information to reduce rumour, uncertainty and prejudice on
the one hand, and to foster trust and stability in the area of conflict and positive perceptions of
the role of peacekeepers and the nature of the peace process, on the other. The integration of the
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 131
6
Extract from B. Stewart (1993), Broken Lives: A Personal Views of the Bosnian Conflict. London:
Harper Collins, p. 316-318.
operational and practical aspects of conflict resolution approaches into the processes of
peacekeeping in the field is still at a somewhat unsystematic and rudimentary stage, but the
requirement is now quite widely recognised. Below, three of the sets of techniques are discussed.
Community Relations: Community relations refers to the deliberate fostering of social
contact with the local population. The purpose of community relations is to create
favourable perceptions locally and to encourage co-operative responses to peace support
activities. All peacekeeping actors should consider themselves agents of the community
relations programme. Prior to deployment, peacekeeping personnel should receive
thorough training on the local culture.
Negotiation and Mediation: Article 33 of Chapter VI of the UN Charter emphasises the
importance of negotiation, enquiry, mediation and conciliation as the most effective
means of settling public disputes. By negotiation and mediation, positive relationships
between the factions and the peacekeeping actors may be formed, which enable
agreements to be reached. Objective and effective negotiations that are created, controlled
and fostered at every level by the peacekeeping actors will develop a climate of mutual
respect and co-operation necessary for the successful resolution of the conflict.
Negotiation and mediation are skills required at all stages of a peace support operation
and need to be exercised at every level of interaction.
Liaison: Conflict thrives on rumour, uncertainty and prejudice. The passage of accurate
information based on a trusting relationship is a key method of combating uncertainty and
promoting stability in a conflict region. Liaison (or, “go-between”) is, therefore a vital
tool in peace support operations. Failure to liase risks misunderstanding, friction,
opposition and escalation of the conflict. The purpose of liaison is to ensure the timely
exchange of information, to notify intentions, lodge protests, co-ordinate activity, manage
crises and settle disputes. A liaison system is therefore required to link the peacekeeping
force, the communities, the civil authorities, the parties to the conflict, the aid agencies
and the media. Liaison Officers (LO’s) have been described as the “eyes and ears” of the
peace Force Commander.
The account below clearly illustrates the use of LO’s in Bosnia by the British
peacekeeping officer Colonel Bob Stewart (Commander 1st Cheshire Battalion Group, British
Command Area of UNPROFOR in Vitez, Central Bosnia, 1992-1993).
6
My mission in Bosnia came directly from Security Council resolutions and basically it
amounted to operations in support of the UNHCR to deliver humanitarian aid. ...It made great
sense to us to create a climate of peace and stability in which to operate. After all, if conditions
could be improved then perhaps we would be able to escort convoys through areas with much
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 132
greater ease. ...This suggested therefore that we should do all in our power to help stop the
fighting and arrange cease-fires. ...However, we had no mandate for forcing a passage through.
Negotiation was always the way we intended to achieve our aims. Launching a convoy towards a
certain destination in the hope that it would get there eventually was not good enough. We had to
create favourable conditions for our work with local contacts, which is why I established a
comprehensive system of liaison officers who concentrated on improving relations in a
particular area. Their own personality was vital since they had to be able to operate on their
own, in a style which both attracted and suited local commanders. It was vital that they were
considered professional and trustworthy. ...I felt that our liaison officers...were fundamental to
our successful tour. They worked in advance, warning and preparing the ground as well as being
trouble-shooters when things went wrong.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 133
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter Five, “Working in War-Zones”, pp. 128-151)
Bloomfield, D. (1997), Peacemaking Strategies in Northern Ireland: Building Complementarity
in Conflict Management Theory. London: Macmillan.
Fetherston, A.B. (1994), Towards a Theory of United Nations Peacekeeping. London:
Macmillan.
Fisher, R.J. and L. Keashly (1991), “The Potential Complementarity of Mediation and
Consultation Within a Contingency Model of Third Party Intervention”, Journal of Peace
Research, 28 (1): 29-42.
Last, D. (1997), Theory, Doctrine and Practice of Conflict De-Escalation in Peacekeeping
Operations. Clemenstport, Nova Scotia: The Pearson Peacekeeping Centre.
Mackinlay, J. (ed.) (1996), A Guide to Peace Support Operations. Providence, RI: Thomas J.
Watson Institute for International Studies/Brown University.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 134
LESSON 7
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. A contingency-complementarity model of conflict intervention is based on:
a. employing different strategies that will be most effective at particular points in a
conflict
b. using a variety of third parties, both official and unofficial
c. addressing the both the objective and subjective elements of conflict
d. all of the above
2. At the micro-level of conflict intervention, peacekeeping acts as an interface between:
a. discussion and destruction
b. peacemaking and Peace Building
c. military and civilian components
d. use of force and non-use of force
3. United Nations peacekeepers were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in:
a. 1956
b. 1988
c. 1990
d. 1997
4. Conflict resolution techniques, such as mediation, negotiation and conciliation, are identified
in:
a. Geneva Conventions
b. Chapter VI, Article 33 of the UN Charter
c. Universal Declaration of Human Rights
5. Classical (or traditional) peacekeeping is defined by the application of five principles. List
them.
6. Classical (or traditional) peacekeeping missions have generally been deployed in:
a. permissive environments (with consent)
b. complex political emergencies
c. civil wars
d. cultures of violence
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 135
7. Which of the following would you describe as a classical peacekeeping operation?
a. UNEF I (the Middle East)
b. UNOSOM II (Somalia)
c. UNPROFOR (former Yugoslavia)
d. UNTAC (Cambodia)
8. Second generation operations have been deployed in conflicts involving:
a. military/security issues
b. political issues (such as the conduct of elections)
c. delivery of humanitarian relief
d. all of the above
9. Modern peacekeeping missions need to develop more effective conflict resolution skills and
processes because:
a. peacekeeping depends on inducing consent amongst belligerents for Peace Building
activities
b. this enables peacekeepers to avoid becoming involved in civil wars
c. peacekeepers have become more important than diplomats
10. List three consent-promoting techniques.
Answer Key: 1-d; 2-b; 3-b; 4-b; 5-consent, non-use of force, voluntary contributions,
impartiality, control by UNSG; 6-a; 7-a; 8-d; 9-a; 10-community relations, negotiation and
mediation, liaison, civilian affairs, community information, public information
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 136
7
Extract from M. Rupiya (1997), “The Bakara Market Arms Clearance Operation of 1993",
International Peacekeeping, 4 (1): 115-121.
Exercise: A Peacekeeping Challenge
Aim: To allow the student to explore the complex realities of working in war-zones.
Method: In this exercise you are presented with an account of a challenging situation in
Somalia, in which the Zimbabwean Army was involved as part of the United Nations
International Task Force (UNITAF). UNITAF was mandated by the United Nations as a peace
enforcement operation under Chapter VII of the Charter. It was not a peacekeeping operation and
it was under the command of the United States. It was, however, scheduled to hand over to the
UN-led operation, UNOSOM II, once its duties were completed. The situation is an instructive
one because the Commander of the operation was keen to maintain the consent and support of
the community in which his troops were deployed, and to operate impartially. Peacekeeping
principles were, therefore, very important in the operation.
Your task is to read the following account, and to consider the questions that follow it. The short
synopsis is based on an eyewitness report of the actions of the Zimbabwean Army in and around
the Bakara market in Mogadishu in 1993
7
. The information provided should be sufficient for you
to gain a basic understanding of the objectives of the operation and the approach taken by the
Zimbabweans. At a certain stage, the operation reached a critical point, requiring an important
decision by the commander of the operation, Major Vitalis Chigume. The account stops at this
point; you are then asked to consider the issue faced by Major Chigume and to assess what you
should do next.
The Bakara Market Arms Clearance Operation of 1993
Background
The primary aim of the UNITAF deployment was to restore law and order amongst the clans
fighting in Somalia and to protect humanitarian aid convoys. At the wider political level, the
strategy of the international community with the support of the Organisation for African Unity
(OAU) was to get the main Somali clans to agree to a cease-fire and to recognise the authority of
UNITAF and its mandate. The clans were to agree to surrender arms to UNITAF forces so that a
peace process could progress. Once agreement was reached, those who refused to disarm would
be declared outlaws and pursued by UNITAF forces.
The Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) contingent in Somalia numbered 162 men. They arrived in
Somalia in January 1993 and were first deployed near Mogadishu airport. They were involved in
re-opening the roads, re-establishing schools and hospitals, and helping the International
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 137
Committee of the Red Cross establish community kitchens. By mid February-1993, agreement
had been reached amongst the Somali factions in Addis Ababa to accept the authority of
UNITAF. The ZNA was then re-deployed to the Bakara market in central Mogadishu, where they
were expected to prevent the vigorous arms trade run from the market. Here the selling of a
variety of arms and ammunition co-existed with a wide range of normal market activity,
important for the economic well-being of the city. The ZNA’s task was to disarm the arms sellers
without disrupting legitimate trade. The local people were told that purpose of the ZNA was to
confiscate weapons and munitions; that normal trade would be left to flourish; and that
combatants from any faction who were prepared to voluntarily surrender arms would be
protected by the international force.
The Operation
Major Chigume decided to pursue the objective by a variety of tactics including cordon and
search, patrolling, conducting sweeps, establishing short-term and long-term road blocks, and
searching suspicious groups, individuals and houses. He established an inner and outer cordon
around the market, deployed two platoons (60 men) in the centre of the market and a thirty-strong
reserve platoon located some distance away and not directly involved with the force but ready to
provide re-enforcements or replacements if required. With agreement reached in Addis Ababa on
a cease-fire and with news of clan leaders meeting to agree on assembly points for where
weapons might be handed in, ordinary people in the market area began to come forward and
confide in the ZNA forces, providing information about arms caches and houses normally used
by the armed men.
Between the middle of February and the end of March, the ZNA confiscated over 1,000 assorted
weapons and tons of munitions. By the end of April the arms clearance operation had radically
restricted the availability of arms and the market area was much more secure and peaceful.
However, at this point local arms merchants whose trade was being affected by the operation
fought back. On 5th May, a ZNA patrol was attacked by gunfire at close range. One of the
soldiers was seriously wounded in the chest. Major Chigume was in the vicinity and was able to
get the soldier to a nearby Swedish Field Hospital. He then returned to debrief the patrol
commander.
Endpoint
Consider the following questions:
What action would you take if you were in Major Chigume’s place when you returned to
the patrol group? Why?
Would you revise your overall strategy? How?
What do you think the actual outcome of the situation was?
Write brief notes on each of these questions.
Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 138
To find out what action Major Chigume took and how the operation concluded, consult the
source of the account.
LESSON 8
PEACE SETTLEMENTS AND
POST-CONFLICT PEACE BUILDING
1. Introduction
2. Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building
3. A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo
4. The United Nations Framework for Peace Building
5. Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below
6. Co-ordinating Military and Civilian Roles in Peace Building
7. Contingency and Complementarity in Practice: A Case Study of
Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia
Peace agreements provide a framework for ending hostilities and a guide to the initial stages
of post conflict reform. They do not create conditions under which the deep cleavages that
produced the war are automatically surmounted.
Successfully ending the divisions that lead to war, healing the social wounds created by war,
and creating a society where the differences among social groups are resolved through
compromise rather than violent conflict requires that conflict resolution and
consensus-building shape all interactions among citizens and between citizens and the state.
- Nicole Ball, The Challenge of Rebuilding War-Torn Societies
Peace Building is the effort to promote human security in societies marked by conflict. The
overarching goal of peace building is to strengthen the capacity of societies to manage conflict
without violence, as a means to achieve sustainable human security.
- The Canadian Peace Building Co-ordinating Committee
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 140
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson examines the role of UN peacekeeping in the post settlement phase of the conflict
resolution process. The tasks and processes of post conflict peace building are defined and
Kosovo is examined as a case study of when the UN is involved in a complex and challenging
process of post conflict peace building. A general framework for United Nations peace building
is defined and the importance of supporting a grass roots led approach, involving local
communities through peace building from below, is emphasised. Finally the need for better co-
ordination of military and civilian roles is suggested and illustrated through the Civil Military
Centre and through a case study of a peace building in project in Bosnia.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
Discuss the nature and range of UN mechanisms and processes for peacemaking after the
termination of armed conflicts;
Apply these concepts to the case of Kosovo;
Understand the process of “peace building-from-below”;
Describe the role of reconciliation and the idea of sustainability of peace processes;
Consider the principles and codes of conduct covering the relationship between
interveners and local populations;
Identify the mechanisms for co-ordinating military and civilian roles in post-conflict
peace building;
Explore the application of the contingency-complementarity model of conflict
intervention (including peace building in the sequence) to a project in Bosnia.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 141
1. Introduction
If the responses of the international community are successful in containing the conflict,
producing a peace settlement, and repairing some of the damage caused, then the next stage in
the conflict resolution process is post-settlement peace building. In this Lesson, we examine the
ways in which the international community takes on the very difficult challenge of rehabilitating
war-torn societies. In the reconstruction phase there are two strategic tasks: (1) to prevent a
relapse into war; and (2) to address the sustainability of the peace process by ensuring that
peaceful relations are developed not only at the leadership level, but also within and between the
communities. There may be continued resistance to this as local warlords, or “spoilers”, have
continued interests in sustaining the conflict. For peaceful relations to develop a process of peace
building “from below” (that is within and between communities) must be energised. The ultimate
goal of a successful peace process is achieved when reconciliation between previous antagonists
has been secured. Peacekeeping forces are centrally involved in the first of these two strategic
tasks. They provide the secure environment in which the opportunities for peace
building-from-below and reconciliation can take place. However, the military peacekeeping
forces must also be aware of the various efforts of local and international civilian organisations to
restore sustainable peace. All peacekeeping actors need to be aware of the ethical issues and
codes of conduct that should guide their relationships with the local population. Both military
and civilian components also need to carefully co-ordinate their work to ensure the success of
their peace building activities.
2. Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building
In An Agenda for Peace (1992), UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali defined
post-conflict peace building as “actions to identify and support structures which will tend to
strengthen and solidify peace in order to avoid a relapse into conflict”. At this time, peace
building was mostly equated with military demobilisation and political transition to participatory
electoral democracy. In the 1995 Supplement to An Agenda for Peace, it was envisaged that
post-conflict peace building would initially be undertaken by multifunctional UN operations,
then handed over to civilian agencies under a resident co-ordinator and, finally, transferred
entirely to local organisations. Since publication of An Agenda for Peace, the idea of peace
building has progressively expanded to include a broader agenda.
The UN’s continuous involvement in post-settlement peace building goes back at least as
far as the 1978 Settlement Proposal in Namibia, devised by the Contact Group of Western states.
A Special Representative, appointed by the UN Secretary-General, was to ensure the early
independence of Namibia through free and fair elections under the supervision and control of the
United Nations. This formula for accelerating the withdrawal of a former colonial power and its
replacement by an independent state was revived 10 years later in very different circumstances.
It became the main model for the UN's new post-settlement peace-building efforts in a number of
long-standing internal wars.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 142
Over the next ten years, a common management pattern emerged from the UN’s
experiences intervening in conflicts. We might refer to this pattern as a “standard operation
procedure” (SOP) for designing peace agreements and promoting peace building. The individual
elements in the UN’s post-settlement peace building SOP have varied from case to case, but
there is a recognisable pattern. In 1995, the key elements of peace building have been described
by former-UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali as:
demilitarisation
control of small arms
institutional reform
improved police and judicial systems
monitoring of human rights
electoral reform
social and economic development.
In 1997 UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan explained the objectives of post-conflict peace
building as:
creation or strengthening of national institutions
monitoring of elections
promotion of human rights
provision of reintegration and rehabilitation programmes and the creation of conditions
for resumed development.
These elements of post-conflict peace building appear in most of the UN missions of the
1990s. For example, UNTAG’s main tasks in Namibia were: (1) separation of military forces
and demobilisation of those not needed in the new national army; (2) demilitarisation of the
South West Africa Police (SWAPOL); (3) supervision of the interim Administrator-General’s
government and repeal of discriminatory laws; (4) return of refugees; and (5) electoral
registration and monitoring. In El Salvador, ONUSAL’s original human rights division was
subsequently supplemented by a military division, a police division, and an electoral division.
UNAVEM III’s main mission components in Angola were political, military, police,
humanitarian, and electoral. In Mozambique, ONUMOZ’s original mandate included four
interrelated components: political, military, electoral and humanitarian (a civilian police
component was later added. Although post-Dayton Bosnian arrangements were different given
the central role of IFOR/SFOR, similar elements can be discerned. Finally, in Cambodia, there
were seven components of UNTAC (see Table 8-1).
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 143
Table 8-1: Components and Tasks of UNTAC
Components of the United Nations Transition Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC)
Component Tasked To?
Military
Verify withdrawal of foreign forces
Monitor cease-fire violations
Organise cantonment and disarm factions
Assist in mine-clearance
Civilian Police Supervise local civilian police
Train local police
Human Rights
Secure signing of human rights
conventions
Oversee human rights record of
administration
Investigate alleged human rights
violations
Initiate education and training
programmes
Civil Administration
Supervise administration to ensure
neutral environment for election in 5
areas: foreign affairs, national defence,
finance, public security, information
Electoral
Conduct demographic survey
Register and educate voters
Draft electoral law
Supervise and verify election process
Repatriation Repatriate 360,000 refugees
Rehabilitation
Address immediate food, health and
housing needs
Begin essential work on infrastructure
Development work in villages with
returnees
3. A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo
One of the most recent efforts of the international community to enforce a peace, impose
a peace agreement, and deploy UN and other international agencies to undertake a complex
process of peace building is in Kosovo. It is an area in southern Serbia (former-Yugoslavia)
where the majority of the population are ethnic Albanians; the minority population (about 10%)
are Serbs. Kosovo had a high degree of autonomy within Yugoslavia until 1989, when Serb
President Slobodan Milosevic removed its autonomy and brought it under direct Serb control.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 144
Kosovar Albanians opposed this throughout the 1990s, initially through a campaign of civil
resistance and the building of parallel institutions (e.g., schools, health services) to represent their
interests.
However, the conflict between Serbian military and police forces in Kosovo and the
increasingly militant Kosovo guerrilla forces escalated during 1998, resulting in over 1,500
deaths and 400,000 people being forced to leave their homes. The pattern became one of
apparent Serb attempts to drive out ethnic Albanians from their communities (reflecting the
policy of
ethnic cleansing which had taken place in Bosnia). Serb forces were challenged by the militant
Albanian Kosova Liberation Army (KLA) in its attempt to build a political movement with the
goal of independence from Serbia.
In October 1998, NATO authorised the use of air strikes against Serbia to back up
diplomatic efforts to force Milosevic to withdraw military forces from Kosovo and to facilitate
the return of refugees. President Milosevic agreed to this. The OSCE was authorised to establish
a Kosovo Verification Mission (KVM) and NATO would establish an aerial surveillance mission
(UNSCR 1203). Additionally, a special military task force under NATO command was
established in Macedonia to assist with the emergency evacuation of KVM staff should the
situation deteriorate.
By January 1999, a number of acts of provocation and fears of further escalation led to
renewed efforts to find a political solution. The six nation Contact Group (originally established
by the 1992 London conference on former-Yugoslavia) agreed to convene negotiations between
the parties. Negotiations were held at Rambouillet near Paris from 6
th
to 23
rd
of February; and a
second round was held in Paris from the 15
th
to 18
th
of March. The Kosovar Albanians signed the
peace agreement, but the Serbs walked out without signing. Serb military forces then intensified
their operations against Kosovar Albanians, breaking their compliance with the October
agreement.
On the 23
rd
of March the order was given to commence air strikes against Serbia
(Operation Allied Force). After an air campaign of 77 days, NATO called off its air strikes
following an agreement between it and the Yugoslav Army, and an agreement with Yugoslavia
brokered by the EU and Russian special envoys in early June. The international community
launched a comprehensive peace building package that included a range of military and civilian
activities.
3.1 Kosovo Force (KFOR) Established
On June 10
th
1999, UNSCR 1244 announced the decision to deploy an international civil
and security presence in Kosovo under UN auspices. The resolution of the conflict was to be
based on principles adopted on May 6
th
by the foreign ministers of G8 (including the Russian
Federation), and by a paper accepted by the government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
(FRY) and presented by the EU and the Russian Federation on June 3
rd
. These principles were:
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 145
an immediate and verifiable end of violence and repression;
the withdrawal of military, police and paramilitary forces of the FRY;
the deployment of effective international and security presence, with substantial NATO
participation and a unified command in the security presence;
the safe return of all refugees;
a political process providing for self government and the demilitarisation of the KLA;
a comprehensive approach to the economic development of the crisis region.
General Michael Jackson took command of the security presence, under Chapter VII of
the UN charter, and under the command of NATO’s North Atlantic Council. The security force
was called the Kosovo Force, or KFOR. Under its command, Operation Joint Guardian entered
Kosovo on June 12
th
. By June 20
th
, the Serb withdrawal was complete.
3.2 The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK)
On June 10
th
, the Security Council authorised the Secretary-General to establish an
interim civilian administration to develop substantial autonomy for the people of Kosovo. By
June 12
th
, Kofi Annan presented an operational concept for what became known as UNMIK
(United Nations Interim Administration in Kosovo). By mid-July 1999 the Secretary-General
presented a comprehensive framework for the work of UNMIK. UNMIK was given authority in
Kosovo over all legislative and executive powers, and the administration of the judiciary. Its
work was to be integrated into five phases with the following objectives:
Phase 1
To set up administrative structures
To deploy international civilian police
To provide emergency assistance for returning refugees
To restore public services
To train local police and judiciary
To develop an economic recovery plan
Phase 2
To develop the administration of social services and utilities
To consolidate the rule of law
To prepare the transfer of education and health sectors to regional and local authorities
Phase 3
To finalise preparations and conduct elections for a Kosovo Transitional Authority
Phase 4
To help Kosovo’s elected representatives to establish provisional institutions for
democratic and autonomous self government, to which UNMIK will transfer its
administrative responsibilities
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 146
Phase 5
To oversee the hand-over of authority from provisional institutions to institutions agreed
as part of a final political settlement.
UNMIK came under the leadership of the Special Representative of Secretary-General,
Dr Bernard Kouchner, who took up office on the 15
th
of July. Kouchner presides over four
sectors, each of which was involved in the civilian aspects of restoring peace. These sectors are
known as the four pillars.
Pillar One Civilian Administration, under the UN
Pillar Two Humanitarian Assistance, led by UNHCR
Pillar Three Democratisation and Institution-Building, led by the OSCE
Pillar Four Economic Reconstruction, led by the EU
While the community remained visibly affected by the war and establishing sustainable
positive peace and cross-ethnic dialogue will always take time and commitment, numerous peace
building initiatives were undertaken by both international agencies and local NGOs. Many of
the activities were in collaboration with the four pillars, others are independent from them.
4. The United Nations Framework for Peace Building
Peace agreements have common elements that can be broadly grouped into two
inter-related tasks. The first set of tasks in the post-settlement phase is to prevent a relapse into
war (Task A). The second set of tasks is constructing a self-sustaining peace (Task B). This is the
positive aspect of the enterprise. The aim is to underpin Task A with Task B – a view to
long-term sustainability by constitutional and institutional reform, social reconstruction and
reconciliation, and the rebuilding of shattered polities, economies and communities. It is an
attempt to tackle four inter-linked deficits, which characteristically afflict countries after
prolonged internal war and hamper the consolidation of peace. These deficits are:
1. Military and security issues (providing security)
2. Political and constitutional incapacity (building democracy)
3. Economic and social debilitation (securing economic development)
4. Psycho-social issues (restoring co-operation and trust, relationship-building,
reconciliation).
All of these issues must be addressed if peace is to be permanently sustained. In the
following sections we look at these dimensions in turn.
4.1 The Military Security Dimension of Peace Building
The main military task for peace building is the cantonment, disarmament and
demobilisation of rival regular and irregular forces, and the reconstitution of the remainder into a
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 147
1
Grenier, Y. and Daudelin, J. “Foreign Assistance and the Marketplace of Peacemaking: Lessons for El
Salvador”, International Peacekeeping, Vol. 2, No. 3, 1995, pp.350-64.
national army and civil police force. One of the most important short- and middle-term problems
in post-conflict areas is the rise in crime rates. Undisciplined former-combatants retain weapons
and fail to find alternative employment in shattered economies in a continuing culture of
violence. For example, in Latin America, where 210 million (30% of the population) still live in
poverty
1
and polls suggest that 65% are dissatisfied with existing democratic processes, the
murder rate is three times that in the United States. The rate is higher in El Salvador than in
Columbia, with more killings per year in 1998 than during the war. Violent crime saps 14% of
the region’s GDP. In these circumstances, the long-term prospect of demilitarising politics and
transforming cultures of violence is challenging.
4.2 The Political Dimension of Peace Building
In addressing the political and constitutional deficit, the UN SOP prescribes
power-sharing arrangements and a new constitution underpinned by regular “free and fair”
national and local elections – in short, liberal democracy. This may imply deeper involvement
and more intimate embroilment in local politics and may require considerable use of military
force where extremists are major players (like Pol Pot in Cambodia, Savimbi in Angola, or
Karadzic in Bosnia). Recently, a hardened doctrine of peacekeeping is being fashioned in order
to be able to enforce compliance with peace agreements by the ability to take action against
“spoilers”, or those who try to wreck peace processes by the use of violence. Opinions vary about
the programme of participatory politics and constitutional and electoral reform, which is at the
heart of the UN’s post-settlement peace building SOP. For many, democratic elections equate
with peace settlements.
However, it can be argued that there is a tension, if not contradiction, between current
Western notions of individual rights and the priorities of non-Western nation-building. Some
argue that the UN assumption that peace building means introducing Western liberal democratic
political institutions and ideas of civil society is unsuitable for cultural reasons. For example, the
Western democratic model does not fit some non-Western cultures, such as the pyramidal
Brahmanic and fatalistic Buddhist social system in Cambodia. Here politics may be sustained by
traditional patronage structures, not by popular consent.
In any case, it seems likely that, no matter what UN framework is applied, local politics
will develop distinctively in different parts of the world, as can be seen to be the case by those
who look beneath the democratic surface elsewhere. Elections or no elections, Mozambique and
Angola may evolve along the lines of neighbouring Zimbabwe, where President Mugabe has
presided continuously since independence. In Cambodia, the loser in the 1993 election, Hun Sen
(CPP), has subsequently succeeded in displacing the winner, Prince Ranariddh (FUNCINPEC),
by force. Similar “minimalist” notions apply to the administration of justice. Lack of an
independent judiciary, and in some cases the basic infrastructure of a judicial system, dictate that
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 148
2
R. Paris (1997), “Peace Building and the Limits of Liberal Internationalism”, International Security,
22 (2): 54-89.
the bare minimum of some measure of personal security is all that can be hoped for in the
foreseeable future.
4.3 The Economic and Social Dimension of Peace Building
In making up the economic and social deficit, the UN has applied a liberal market
economy model, underpinned by conditions determined by International Financial Institutions
(IFIs). However, there has been lack of co-ordination between the two in some cases. There are
some who have expressed the opinion that IMF policy was damaging in some cases such as
Mozambique in 1995, where an already struggling government was initially required to make
further cutbacks. Similar consequences have been seen in Cambodia and El Salvador, where
initial increased growth rates have slowed and widening economic inequalities and a growth in
crime threaten stability. Therefore, Paris recommends a shift of priorities within the UN’s SOP
towards “peace-oriented adjustment policies”, which recognise the priority of stimulating rapid
economic growth even at the risk of higher inflation, and target resources at supporting those
hardest hit during the transition period.
2
Others place their emphasis on enabling indigenous economic systems to flourish
protected from the harsh climate of international capital, controlled and manipulated as it is seen
to be by the economic interests of the developed world. Most working in the Conflict Resolution
field would claim that the main aim must be “local empowerment”. The logic of local
empowerment may also imply deep involvement in indigenous struggles for social justice.
5. Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below
Effective and sustainable peacemaking processes must be based not only on the
manipulation of peace agreements made by elites, but equally importantly on the empowerment
of communities torn apart by war – that is, building peace from below. There are important
lessons to be learned from the experiences of peacekeeping operations in the 1990s.
Firstly, in the course of civil wars, cultures and economies of violence develop and
provide formidable barriers to constructive intervention. In these conflicts, simple,
one-dimensional interventions – whether by traditional mediators aiming at formal peace
agreements or peacekeepers placed to supervise cease-fires or overseeing of elections –
are unlikely to produce comprehensive or lasting resolution.
Secondly, formal peace agreements need to be underpinned by understandings, structures
and long-term development frameworks that will erode cultures of violence and sustain
peace processes on the ground.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 149
Thirdly, it is important to recognise the role of local groups, citizens’ initiatives, and the
non-governmental sector. These provide the vital links with local knowledge and
resources. These groups are important because they provide the source of sustainable
citizen-based peace building initiatives. They open-up participatory public political
spaces in order to allow institutions of civil society to flourish. If this process does not
happen then the conflict is likely to remain, and the military peacekeeping forces may
need to stay in place for long periods simply to provide security.
There are significant challenges here for the UN in this process of empowering local
groups. John Paul Lederach has stressed the importance of this approach, which he calls
indigenous empowerment. The principle of indigenous empowerment suggests that conflict
transformation must actively envision, include, respect, and promote the human and cultural
resources from within a given setting. This involves a new set of lenses through which we do not
primarily “see” the setting and the people in it as the “problem” and the outsider as the “answer”.
Rather, we understand the long-term goal of transformation as validating and building on people
and resources within the setting.
Lederach’s comprehensive approach entails building an “infrastructure for peace”, which
involve all the affected population. He describes the affected population as a triangle, with the
key military and political leaders at the apex, at Level One. In the middle, at Level Two, are the
national leaders who have significance as leaders in sectors such as health, education and within
the military hierarchies. At the grass-roots level (Level Three) are the vast majority of the
affected population: the common people, displaced and refugee populations, local leaders, elders,
church groups and locally-based NGOs. At this level, the armed combatants are also represented
as guerrillas and soldiers in militias. Most peacemaking at the level of international diplomacy
operates at Level One of this triangle, but for conflict resolution to be successful and sustainable
then the co-ordination of peacemaking strategies across all three levels must be undertaken. In
this new thinking, peace building-from-below is of decisive importance for it is the means by
which a peace constituency can be built within the setting of the conflict itself. Once again, this
is a departure from conventional practice where peacemaking resources from outside the conflict
(diplomats, third party intervenors) are valued more highly than peacemaking assets that may
exist within the community.
There are over 4,000 development NGOs in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation
and Development (OECD) countries that work mainly overseas, and an estimated 20,000 other
national NGOs outside the OECD countries. The latter may become the field-based partners of
the larger NGOs (that is the international NGOs, or INGOs, which can operate in may countries
and regions and which, like Oxfam and Save the Children, have multinational organisation).
Finally, there is a variety of grass-roots (GROs) and community-based organisations (CBOs) that
represent local interests, local opinion, and local cultures. In the course of the most extreme
conflict emergencies, the number of NGOs in the field can escalate dramatically. In Rwanda, for
example, there were over 200 NGOs active at the height of the crisis in 1995. Similarly, the
number of NGOs active in former-Yugoslavia went through a remarkable expansion as the crisis
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 150
unfolded. Between February and September 1993, the number of NGOs nearly doubled (from 65
to 126). While the majority of them were internationally-based, with more or less well-known
reputations (91), a number were indigenous NGOs, (GROs and CBOs) which developed in
response to the war. In Kosovo, in late-1999, there were over 350 international and local NGOs
on the ground.
5.1 Guiding Principles and Codes of Conduct for Peace Building-From-Below
A standard code of conduct, established by the UN DPKO, has existed for military
peacekeepers. However, codes of conduct for international agencies and NGOs have been
largely absent until recently. A Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red
Crescent Movement and NGOs in disaster relief developed in Geneva in 1993 contains 10
principles for NGOs working to provide humanitarian relief to communities in natural disasters
and in conflict zones. The traditional principles of neutrality, impartiality and humanitarian
concern were covered in the first four principles. Principles 1 through four were supplemented
by 5 through 10, as follows, which insist on local empowerment and will, therefore, facilitate and
enhance the emphasis on local capacity-building and peace building-from-below.
Principle 1: The Principle of Humanity. The Red Cross, born of a desire to bring assistance
without discrimination to the wounded on the battlefield, endeavours…to prevent and alleviate
human suffering wherever it may be found. Its purpose is to protect life and health and to ensure
respect for the human being.
Principle 2: The Principle of Impartiality. The Red Cross makes no discrimination as to
nationality, race, religious beliefs, class or political opinion. It endeavours to relieve the
suffering of individuals, being guided solely by their needs, and to give priority to the most
urgent cases of distress.
Principle 3: The Principle of Neutrality. In order to continue to enjoy the confidence of all, the
Red Cross may not take sides in hostilities or engage at any time in controversies of a political,
racial, religious or ideological nature.
Principle 4: The Principle of Universality. The Red Cross is a world-wide institution in which
all Societies have equal status and share equal responsibilities and duties in helping each other.
Our movement’s universality stems from the attachment of each of its members to common
values.
Principle 5: We shall respect culture and custom (respect for the culture, structures and customs
of the host society).
Principle 6: We will attempt to build disaster response on local capacities (all people and
communities even in disasters possess capabilities as well as vulnerabilities and these capacities
should be strengthened by working with local NGOs, employing local staff and using local
economic resources).
Principle 7: Ways shall be found to involve programme beneficiaries in the management of
relief aid (the need to achieve full community participation in the management and
implementation of relief and assistance).
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 151
3
Emma Bonino (European Commissioner with Responsibility for Humanitarian Aid), quoted I. Agger
(1995), Theory and Practice of Psycho-Social Projects under War Conditions in Bosnia-Hercegovina and
Croatia, Zagreb: ECHO, foreword.
Principle 8: Relief aid must strive to reduce future vulnerabilities to disaster as well as meeting
basic needs (the need to implement programmes which reduce vulnerability to future disasters
and help create sustainable lifestyles).
Principle 9: We hold ourselves accountable to both those we seek to assist and those from
whom we accept resources (the need to be accountable to both those who require assistance and
to donors).
Principle 10: In our information, publicity and advertising activities, we shall recognise disaster
victims as dignified humans, not hopeless objects (the need to respect the disaster victim as an
equal partner in action, and to use images where the capacities and aspirations of the victims are
portrayed, not only vulnerabilities and fears).
5.2 Reconciliation and Sustainability
Healing the personal and social scars of war has always been central to the work of the
Conflict Resolution field. This task is not an optional extra or an idealistic aspiration separate
from the more practical aspects of post-settlement peace building, as it is often seen to be. It is
integral to every other enterprise. In Cambodia, for example, it took more than a year to establish
a sufficient level of trust among community members to enable collaborative projects to be
implemented.
One of the main obstacles to social and psychological healing is the accumulated hurt and
hatred suffered by hundreds of thousands if not millions of victims. The “invisible effects” of
war are often harder to treat than the physical effects:
The first victims of war are often women and children. Even though they do not lose life
or limbs, they are often deeply traumatised in ways not visible to the naked eye. Victims of
violence and rape cannot just walk back into everyday life as if nothing happened. As we all
know, in the former-Yugoslavia, peace has yet to break out for many of the victims.
3
Psycho-social assistance to victims of war is now seen to be a part of a long-term healing
process. In Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia, for example, assistance was provided through
psychologically-oriented group interventions, counselling, and intensive psycho-therapy.
Despite this trauma, the end-point of a successful process of peace building is
reconciliation. Reconciliation is the process through which societies move from situations of
negative peace (the stopping of hostilities) to situations of positive peace (where trust and
co-operation between former enemies has been restored). It is, undoubtedly, the most difficult
part of conflict resolution and cannot be achieved in the short-term. Lederach has defined
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 152
reconciliation as the meeting point where justice, truth, forgiveness, and peace come together. In
his definition, reconciliation means working with three challenging paradoxes:
Reconciliation means an encounter between an open expression of the painful past and
the search for an interdependent future.
Reconciliation provides a place for truth and forgiveness or mercy to meet, to
acknowledge what has happened in the past, to apologise and to forgive or let go of the
past in favour of a renewed relationship.
Reconciliation recognises the need to give time and space to both justice and peace,
where redressing wrongs is held together with a vision of restoring harmony and
well-being rather than vengeance.
One of the promising new mechanisms for addressing these issues is the use of Truth
Commissions. For example, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) has been
recognised as a key part of the reconciliation of the conflict in South Africa. The TRC in South
Africa is aimed at:
full public disclosure of human rights violations since 1960 and an attempt to harmonize
competing versions of the past;
some acknowledgment of responsibility, if not expression of regret;
some measure of reparation for the victims to help open-up an emotional space sufficient
for accommodation, if not forgiveness.
Truth and Reconciliation Commissions raise difficult questions. For example, in the wake
of the 1993 Truth Commission Report in El Salvador, perpetrators of atrocities were given an
amnesty without any private or public acknowledgement or expression of remorse. The healing
process was incomplete and had to be carried further by Catholic priests who acted as
intermediaries between perpetrators and victims and extracted information about the whereabouts
of bodies in exchange for absolution. Needless to say, the South African TRC has been criticised
from opposite directions, by those arguing that the country should not look back and risk causing
new wounds, and by others arguing that human rights violations should be tried and punished in
courts of law.
The peace and development agency CARITAS drew up the following balance sheet of
some of the strengths and weaknesses of the TRC in South Africa, which may be applicable to
reconciliation processes in other conflicts (Table 8-2).
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 153
TABLE 8-2: The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa: Strengths and
Weaknesses
Strengths
Provide a space in which people can tell
their story and where their story will be
listened to.
Those who have suffered have the
possibility of finding out the truth about
family and friends who disappeared or
who were unaccountable for.
This process of truth recovery is
important in breaking the “silence”
which can follow physical repression
when people have been too afraid to
talk.
The documentation by the TRC of
wrong-doing and human rights abuses
creates a new public consciousness
about the violence of the past and the
effects it had on individuals.
The TRC travelled around the country
and was, therefore, more accessible to
people than if it had been located only
in the capital.
It was composed of South Africans who
were regarded as possessing the moral
authority necessary to oversee the
process and to provide international
legitimacy.
The TRC provided a forum for public
acknowledgment of guilt and the
opportunity to make an apology, which
is a necessary first step to reconciliation.
For the victim it is an opportunity to
forgive and to look to the future rather
than to live embittered in the past.
Weaknesses
Those who applied for amnesty did not necessarily
have to ask for forgiveness, but they did have to
reveal all the circumstances surrounding their
crimes.
For some, the time-span of the TRC was too short
and more long-term issues of historical memory
were not dealt with (the TRC only went bck to
1960).
The TRC was not a justice tribunal. This aggrieved
many South Africans who felt that people who had
committed serious crimes were escaping punishment
(however, the Amnesty Commission did set strict
terms on the legal requirements necessary for
granting amnesty.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 154
4
From, British Army (1998), Peace Support Operations. London: Joint Warfare Publication 3.05, 7-5.
6. Co-ordinating Military-and Civilian Roles in Peace Building
United Nations peace building is an integrated programme. The Department of Political
Affairs (DPA) – in its capacity as convenor of the Executive Committee on Peace and Security
(ECPS) – co-ordinates the joint enterprise, involving the Office of the High Commissioner for
Human Rights (OHCHR), the Department of Peace-keeping Operations (DPKO), the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United Nations Development
Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank. As the focal point, the convenor of ECPS also
supports and reinforces the individual task forces established “to ensure integrated action by the
entire United Nations system” in each case. In all this, the planners are to consider, in particular,
“the point at which the emphasis on the peace building role will give way to full-fledged
reconstruction and development activities”.
It is widely recognised that co-ordination between the variety of NGOs and between the
civil and military forces assigned to contemporary missions is a matter of great priority. In recent
operations, an interface has been created for the co-ordination of military and civilian roles
through Civil-Military Operations Centres (CMOC), or Civil-Military Centres (CIMIC). CIMIC
is defined as “the resources and arrangements which support the relationship between the
commanders and national authorities, civil and military, and civil populations in an area where
military force are or plan to be employed. Such measures include co-operation with
non-governmental or international agencies, organisations or authorities”
4
. The immediate aim of
CIMIC is to fully co-ordinate civilian and military activities to support humanitarian projects and
to achieve the maximum support for the operation. The longer-term aim is to generate stability
and sustainability of the peace process. In new peacekeeping thinking, CIMIC projects provide
the link between security, stability, and peace building. Civil-military projects can cover a wide
range of activities within local communities, including:
medical and veterinary care
provision and distribution of water
waste-disposal
electrical power
ordinance clearance
restoration of public services
construction and development of schools and community centres
These projects are often funded separately, via support from the development assistance
authority of the relevant country. In the case of the UK, for example, projects may be co-funded
by the Department for International Development (DFID), or in the case of the US, by USAID.
Before commencing projects, the advice of government, non-governmental organisations, and
relief agencies already working with the community should be sought. Projects that do not use
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 155
5
David Last (2000), “Organising for Effective Peace Building”, in T. Woodhouse and O.
Ramsbotham (eds.), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, London: Frank Cass, pp. 80-96. (Reprinted
by permission.)
Fi g ur e 2 : A r e a D e p l oy me n t of a Pe a c e k e e p i ng F or c e
r o a d s
B o u nd a r y o f a r e a
o f r e sp o n si b i l i ty
I nt e r -e nti t y b o u nd a r y
1
2
M a r k e t g a r d e n s
f or l oc a l t o w n s
C ot t a g e i n d u st r y
e x p or t s on r o u t e 3
A
C
B
D
3
local resources and personnel whenever possible may promote a dependency culture and
jeopardise long-term peace building.
In the following section we examine a peace building project in Bosnia that illustrates the
innovative work of combining military and civilian assets in a broad approach to peace building.
The case further illustrates the contingency and complementary approach outlined in Lesson 7.
7. Contingency and Complementarity in Action:
A Case Study of Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia
5
International forces can impose military stability, but the rest depends ultimately on the
locals. They must help in the restoration of peace, order, good government, and a sustainable
economy. A mind-boggling array of international organizations and NGOs has tried to support
this process in Bosnia. I would like to suggest an alternative, which would help deployed military
forces to build human security from the bottom-up, fostering local co-operation at grass-roots
level. Soldiers cannot achieve these objectives, but they can help to establish a framework that
will let civilians – both local and international – do what is needed. Soldiers are well suited for
this enabling role for three reasons. They arrive in organized groups with vehicles,
communications and their own security. They can cover an area like a blanket with a systematic
command, control and intelligence network. And they have the capacity to stifle violence,
permitting cooperation to take root. However, they are not effective at cultivating cooperation,
because they lack the core therapeutic peace building skills that will help relationships grow
again between hostile communities.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 156
Figure 2 shows the boundaries of a military unit or formation deployed on a peacekeeping
mission. It might be a NATO Battle Group deployed in Northwest Bosnia or Kosovo. Towns are
lettered and routes are numbered. Each town has an economic and social zone around it, market
gardens, resource extraction, or cottage industry, for example. The dashed line represents a
boundary between factions or formerly hostile entities. The hostility does not disappear overnight.
The boundary, and the difficulty of moving across it, creates barriers to economic and political
recovery. The cottage industry is cut off from the town (D) that supplies its labour, and from
Route 3 on which its exports must move. That is precisely the situation faced by towns all over the
Former Yugoslavia.
The peace building challenges fall in four areas: security, relief and development,
government and civil society, and reconciliation. As a civil affairs officer in Bosnia in the first six
months of NATO’s deployment, I lacked sufficient knowledge of the language, culture, and local
history. I could not find the moderate allies that I needed. I was not knowledgeable enough in any
of the peace building areas, and I did not have civilian NGOs or international agencies to work
with, until they began to trickle in 6-12 months after the beginning of the mandate.
The Pearson Peacekeeping Centre experimented with a solution to these problems. The
Neighbourhood Facilitators Project trained 20 local Bosnian Muslims, Serbs and Croats in
Banja Luka in a variety of interpersonal and conflict resolution skills. It then trained
international facilitators and selected five for deployment to Bosnia. The locals and internationals
were brought together in mixed teams, and given further training that reflected the circumstances
in Banja Luka, including the difficulties associated with minority return. A community centre with
a mobile team was established, and from March to July 1998, the facilitators helped local people
develop solutions to their own problems. Crucial to the success of the Neighbourhood Facilitators
was the combination of local facilitators with diverse backgrounds, and internationals who
provided expertise and a link to the supporting international community. The most important
limiting factors were lack of money for salaries and rent, and lack of reach into the surrounding
areas because of the security problems experienced by the mobile teams.
The Neighbourhood Facilitators Project developed the concept of a community centre as a
home base for teams, each of which included local and international facilitators. Some of the
teams were mobile, equipped to work away from the centre. Others worked in or from the centre
itself. Within each centre, there was a small local support staff, to provide translation and
administrative services. Each of the four towns in the area of operations depicted in Figure 2
might have a different mix of mobile and static teams, embodying a variety of skills depending on
the evolution of its needs. Early on, the focus might be on refugee return, immediate aid and
reconstruction, with most teams being mobile. Development, reconciliation and governance might
be more important later. The core of each team, at least initially, is an international facilitator.
As the teams and mission evolve, local facilitators should be increasingly central. Ideally, the
local-international partnership should be an equal one from the outset, but the balance of skills
may leave a leading role to international facilitators by default.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 157
What do these teams do? A community centre and its teams can be the glue for all the
other services and organisations that come to its area to help repair the damage of violent
conflict. Because the teams are fundamentally local as well as international, they help to rebuild
the country from the ground-up, developing people who will stay there for the long haul. Because
they are part of a formal and well supported structure, they are a reliable interface between a
multinational military force or observer mission, international organisations, NGOs, and the
local population. Because they are party to a larger campaign plan, they can facilitate local and
international effort at the community level.
Local and international facilitators must possess a variety of skills to be selected.
Self-awareness and ability to work with people across cultural and linguistic barriers is a basic
prerequisite. This includes the ability to transcend the barriers that separate locals and
internationals, soldiers and civilians. Beyond this, necessary skills fall into four categories:
Economic, security, governance, and reconciliation.
The teams embody a mixture of individual skills – a broad understanding of all the issues,
plus deeper expertise in specific areas. A team operating across boundaries or in an area with
vulnerable minorities, for example, might need to include someone with detailed knowledge of
non-violent security techniques, of the sort developed by Peace Brigades International. The
expertise must be sufficient to teach others and lead them in action. (When the threat is very high,
teams may travel with military units.) A team dealing with minority return will need economic
and reconciliation expertise. Governance expertise may become increasingly important later in a
mission to teach democracy and develop civil society, or to help prepare for elections.
Working in small teams at community level, local and international facilitators can use
access to international resources to reward co-operation and help rebuild the relationships that
were destroyed by violent conflict. They are the nucleus of a new, co-operative way of doing
business. Many small interactions
at local-level multiply the chance
that co-operation will take hold
and spread, as long as violence is
controlled.
The balance of skills and
resources needed for a successful
international intervention should
change as a mission evolves. At
the outset, catalytic and leadership
skills will be most important. As
the confidence and co-operation
of local allies grows, training and
education skills will become
increasingly important. In Bosnia,
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 158
6
David Last (2000), “Organising for Effective Peace Building”, in T. Woodhouse and O. Ramsbotham
(eds.), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, London: Frank Cass, pp. 80-96. (Reprinted by
permission.)
it was probably about two years before this occurred. Training and education are used to develop
local capacity to perform the key community-building functions. Locals must take over these
functions before the process can become self-sustaining. Sustaining progress, developing new
programmes to meet evolving need, and making the transition to full local ownership requires
nurturing and mentoring skills. Figure 3
6
illustrates this sequence in the evolution of a mission, in
parallel with a transition in the mechanisms for controlling violent behaviour. This sequence
implies a deliberate but gradual reduction in the international presence. Violence is brought
under control early on by a concerted effort from police, paramilitary and military forces. As
local institutions develop, local civilian police can take over the control of violence through
community policing. Locals gradually take over the process of building relationships between
formerly hostile communities.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 159
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter VII, “Post-Settlement Peace Building”, pp.
185-215.)
Kumar, Krishna (1997) (ed.), Rebuilding Societies After Civil War. Boulder/London: Lynne
Rienner.
Last, D. (2000), “Organising for Effective Peace Building”. In T. Woodhouse and O.
Ramsbotham (eds.), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, London: Frank Cass, pp. 80-96.
Lederach, J.P. (1997), Building Peace: Sustainable Reconciliation in Divided Societies.
Washington, DC: United States Institute of Peace.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 160
LESSON 8
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. In which document was the idea of post-conflict peace building first defined?
a. The United Nations Charter
b. The Agenda for Peace
c. The Blue Helmets
2. The UN’s experience in post-conflict peace building was heavily influenced by which of the
following missions:
a. Namibia (UNTAG)
b. India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP)
c. The Middle East (UNTSO)
3. Which of the phrases below best describes the overall and long-term objectives of post-conflict
peace building?
a. stopping violence
b. providing security
c. restoring public services
d. restoring trust and constructing a self-sustaining peace
4. KFOR was established in June 1999 as an operation under the command of:
a. The United Nations
b. The European Union
c. NATO
5. In June 1999 the United Nations Security Council established UNMIK. Which of the following
best describes its overall mandate?
a. to secure the border between Serbia and Kosovo
b. to prevent arms trafficking
c. to establish a civilian administration and to develop substantial autonomy for Kosovo
6. How many sectors or “pillars” are involved in the civilian aspects of restoring peace in
Kosovo?
a. 2
b. 4
c. 6
d. 8
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 161
7. Which of the following are lead agencies in civilian and military aspects of restoring peace in
Kosovo? (Choose five.)
a. The United Nations
b. UNHCR
c. OSCE
d. IFOR
e. KFOR
f. The European Union
g. The IMF
h. Medecins sans Frontieres
8. In the perspective of conflict resolution, UN operations concerned with post-conflict peace
building should attempt to correct four “deficits”. List these below.
9. Which of the following terms best defines the objectives of peace building from below?
a. implementing the peace agreements made by politicians
b. ensuring local factions are disarmed
c. building a peace constituency and resources within the conflict setting
10. Identify one advantage and one disadvantage of the use of the Truth and Reconciliation
Commission in South Africa.
Answer Key: 1-b; 2-a; 3-d; 4-c; 5-c; 6-b; 7-a, b, c, e, f; 8-military/security issues,
political/constitutional incapacity, economic/social debilitation, psycho-social issues; 9-c;
10-advantages: provides space to tell story, find out truths, breaks silence, creates public
consciousness, accessible, legitimate authority, public acknowledgement of guilt; disadvantages:
not a justice tribunal, amnesty-seekers did not have to ask for forgiveness, short time-span.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 162
Exercise: A CIMIC Dilemma
Aims:
To encourage the student to explore the importance of CIMIC in co-ordinating
civilian-military peace building activities;
To allow the student to apply his/her conflict resolution knowledge to challenging
situations a peacekeeping environment.
Method: You are to take the role of a peacekeeper involved in the co-ordination of civil-military
affairs in an area of conflict undergoing the early stages of post-conflict peace building. A
description of your situation and responsibilities is given below. In the course of your work you
become aware that there is possible corruption and intimidation occurring in the building in which
you are based. Your task in the exercise is to make a preliminary assessment of how you might
manage this problem.
The Situation
You are an officer in charge of CIMIC (Civil-Military Affairs Centre), part of the SFOR operation
in Bosnia. You are based in a building in a city center. You only have a small staff working for
you (four soldiers), but you have good lines of communication up to the SFOR Commander and to
the UNMIBH Civil Administration. You also have good contacts in the OSCE office, which is
tasked with helping to develop democratic organizations in the community.
Your job as Officer in Command of CIMIC is to deal with civil affairs: to liase with the public
and non-military agencies, and to ensure that the role of SFOR is efficiently achieved. You
interpret the role of SFOR as being to establish the security space or conditions, whereby the job
of the civil administration (UNMIBH) can be achieved. Your office is busy and every day you
have calls and visits asking if you can help with various problems.
Your main responsibility is supporting UNHCR and the NGOs in your sector to effectively deliver
the basic material needed to ensure that the returning refugees and existing inhabitants of the
villages can survive the oncoming winter. Without adequate shelter, food and fuel, thousands of
people will be at risk. You are planning around-the-clock to work out where the gaps might be
(i.e., where UNHCR and the NGOs may need military back-up to get supplies in). You also have
a plan to use schools in your sector to serve as emergency shelters (for people whose homes are
not warm/secure) and as collective centers for the worst months of the winter. The focus of the
UN’s work is on this “winterisation” programme.
Within your building, you are also concerned to maximize its use for the benefit of the
“community”. For example, you think it would be a good idea to provide space for local NGOs to
hold their meetings.
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 163
Your Problem
You are beginning to wonder who or what the community that you are trying to help actually
amounts to. There are a small number of Serbs in the town, though there majority are Bosnian
Muslim. One of the people in the building is a young Serb man who is trying to establish a small
business, supplying coffee and sandwiches for the international staff and for the local people who
are coming in and out of the building. You become aware that he is being threatened/intimidated,
as are some of the NGO activists who are beginning to run their meetings in the building.
The building is also occupied by a Bosnian Muslim man. You suspect that he is the source of the
threats being made to the NGO staff and that he is trying to frighten the Serb to leave the building.
Task
Consider the following questions and write a brief report (maximum one page).
What are the most important issues here?
What options are available to you to address these issues?
What actions would you take in this situation? Why?
What might the likely outcomes be?
Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 164
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LESSON 9
CULTURE, CONFLICT RESOLUTION AND PEACEKEEPING
1. Introduction
2. Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
3. Cultural Response 1
4. Cultural Response 2
5. Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping
6. Case Study: Intervention in Somalia
7. Developing Cultural Awareness Skills
Culture is like a map. Just as a map isn’t the territory but an abstract representation of a
particular area, so also a culture is an abstract description of trends towards uniformity in the
words, deeds, and artefacts of a human group. If a map is accurate and you can read it you
won’t get lost; if you know a culture you will know your way about in the life of a society.
- Clyde Kluckhohn, Anthropologist, 1950
If you know a country and a culture, you have a much better chance of achieving your mission.
- US Special Envoy to Somalia (UNITAF), Robert Oakley
Somalia underlines the importance of knowing the country, the culture, the ground and the
language as a pre-condition of military operations.
- Colonel Ken Allard, US Army, Somalia Operations: Lesson Learned
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 166
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson examines the importance of culture as a factor influencing conflict behaviour.
The theoretical basis for this is outlined and a framework which enables culture sensitive
approaches to be developed in conflict resolution processes is explained. The relevance of cultural
issues in peacekeeping is then examined both in general terms and in relation to the experiences in
Somalia.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
S Offer a cultural critique of universally applied conflict resolution theory and practice;
S Summarise two of the cultural approaches that have resulted from these critiques;
S Identify the levels of intercultural interaction in contemporary peacekeeping operations;
S Describe some of the cultural problems that occurred during the operations in Somalia.
S Begin to consider how culture influences his/her beliefs and values about conflict and
conflict resolution.
S Integrate a culture perspective into his/her peacekeeping practice.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 167
1. Introduction
Until recently, the importance of culture in conflict and conflict intervention was
underestimated by scholars and practitioners in Conflict Resolution. Yet, most would now agree
that culture does matter: lack of sensitivity to cultural issues can have a limiting impact on the
effectiveness of conflict resolution initiatives, including peacekeeping operations. The reality of
contemporary peacekeeping requires that culture be considered as it influences conflict
intervention on several different levels. Lessons learned from the operations in Somalia clearly
illustrate how lack of cultural awareness may obstruct the potential effectiveness of peacekeeping.
CULTURE
A working definition of culture is: a system of both implicit and explicit meanings, beliefs, values
and behaviours shared by the members of a community or group, through which experience is
interpreted and carried out.
Culture:
< is not stable or homogenous;
< is not merely a custom;
< is a complex responsive process;
< changes over time.
Individuals do not embody a single culture, but rather multiple cultures. Although culture is
usually used to refer to relatively large groups of people and the boundaries between cultures often
coincide with ethnic and political boundaries (e.g., American, Zambian, European, Asian), there
are many cultural groups that exist within the larger ones – micro-cultures (e.g., age, gender, class,
military, civilian).
Like an iceberg, nine-tenths of culture is out of conscious awareness. This “hidden” part of
culture is referred to as deep culture.
2. Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
2.1 A Cultural Critique of Conflict Resolution
Developed by scholars working in institutions throughout Europe and North America, the
field of Conflict Resolution has largely reflected Western intellectual assumptions, expectations,
values and rationality about the nature of conflict and its resolution. Traditionally, the discipline
has falsely assumed that its theories and methods have universal applicability, i.e., that its
principles and techniques can be applied across all social and cultural contexts of conflict. For
example, John Burton has contributed to the development of a “generic” theory of conflict and
conflict resolution. His human needs theory is based on the idea that universal patterns of
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 168
behaviour exist, making possible a generic approach to conflict resolution, one that transcends all
differences of ethnicity and culture.
While conflict is universal, the ways in which it is expressed and managed are not.
Conflict is embedded in diverse cultural frameworks. Each experiences its own conception of
conflict and techniques and processes for managing and resolving it, the means of which have
always existed within social and cultural groups. In fact, the Western field of Conflict Resolution
is only now beginning to formalise an understanding of conflict and its resolution that, for many
centuries, has been practised by people around the world. (Table 9-1 compares the Western
model of conflict resolution with the Non-Western model, demonstrating the broad cultural
differences between them.) Therefore, the prescription of a Western approach to conflict
intervention that fails to, at minimum, consider the varying cultural interpretations of conflict and
conflict resolution, is not only inappropriate but often ineffective.
TABLE 9-1: Comparison of Western and Non-Western Conflict Resolution Processes
Western Model Non-Western Model
Purpose Focus on conflict issues
Negotiate concrete
agreements
Restore relationships,
preserve harmony
Process Formal, directive,
bureaucratic
Consensual
Individually-based
Informal, non-directive,
interpersonal
Consensual
Community-based
Setting Indoors, private forum,
unfamiliar setting
Indoors or outdoors, public
forum, intimate setting
Organisation of Time Scheduled event
Time constraints
Takes place within normal
daily routine
Time is extended , lasting
as long as is necessary
to reach an agreement
Issues Focus on issues related to
immediate conflict,
isolated from social
network
Focus on issues as
embedded in social
network
Communication Fact specific, linear
process
Facts and feelings may be
relayed through
storytelling, poetry,
etc.; circular process
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 169
Role and Responsibilities
of Third Party
Anonymous, professional
outsider
Authority gained through
credentials and training
(procedural
knowledge)
Impartiality is essential
Often no direct power
Often known, respected
insider
Authority based on status
in community and
wisdom (substantive
knowledge)
Trust emphasised over
impartiality
Often direct power to
advise, counsel
persuade and/or coerce,
make decisions
Role and Responsibilities
of Community
Wider community not
usually involved
Wider community
involved; can exert
pressure on parties to
settle; sometimes have
decision-making
powers
Resolution Obtain results that are
mutually satisfactory to
conflict parties (win-
win)
Written, signed agreement
Settlement to restore
balance and harmony
to the community or
adherence to right and
wrong (win-lose)
Personal word (oral)
agreement more
binding
Conclusion Usually none Ritual of reconciliation
(e.g., apology-
forgiveness ritual,
payment for damages,
shared meal, gift
exchange)
2.2 The Culture Question
The relationship between culture and conflict has been studied in anthropology for some
time. The anthropological literature is abundant in ethnographic case studies of traditional dispute
settlement and indigenous conflict management (primarily from the field of legal anthropology) in
small-scale societies. These studies, although narrow in application, are important foundations for
the culture critique of contemporary conflict resolution.
However, the presence of thousands of military and civilian personnel from numerous
countries in conflict zones around the world, trying to achieve common conflict resolution goals,
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 170
1
K. Avruch and P. Black (1991), “The Culture Question and Conflict Resolution”, Peace and Change, 16 (1): 31-32.
See also, K. Avruch, P.W. Black and J.A. Scimecca (1991) (eds.), Conflict Resolution: Cross-Cultural Perspectives.
London: Greenwood.
has shown up major cultural discontinuities. The depth of cultural ignorance and
misunderstanding and the inappropriateness of attempted conflict resolution approaches are
undeniable. The unexpected expansion in peacemaking, peacekeeping and Peace Building work in
areas of conflict in the 1990s, through the UN, regional organisations, and a variety of INGOs and
NGOs, has propelled the “culture question” in Conflict Resolution to the top of the agenda.
There have been several important contributions to the culture question in Conflict
Resolution. Two responses – in the form of culture-specific methodologies – will be considered
below.
3. Cultural Response 1
Kevin Avruch and Peter Black, anthropologists and conflict resolution scholars at the
Institute for Conflict Analysis (ICAR) at George Mason University (Virginia, USA), helped to
bring the culture question to the fore in conflict resolution theory. They proposed that culture, as
a concept, is a powerful analytical tool. With this in mind, they developed a unique theoretical
perspective to conflict resolution.
1

3.1 Ethnoconflict Theory
To understand conflict behaviour, Avruch and Black argue that it is necessary to attend to
the local understandings of being and action which people use in the production and interpretation
of conflict behaviour. They refer to this cultural knowledge as ethnoconflict theory or, simply, the
local common-sense about conflict. Ethnoconflict theory is influenced by a set of complex,
interdependent determinants that vary cross-culturally, including language, social, political and
economic structures, religion and folk psychology (or, “ethnopsychology” – the local assumptions
about people and relationships). In terms of this analytical framework, these determinants are not
sources of conflict (although, outside of the framework they may lead to conflict); they are
variables within a cultural system that, over time, influence the thinking and behaviour of the
individuals in the group. In addition to prescribing the rules for conflict regulation within a given
society, ethnoconflict theory may also inform outsiders of the most appropriate strategies for
intervention.
3.2 Ethnopraxes
Ethnopraxes are the corresponding conflict resolution techniques and practices. All human
groups have developed their own ways of responding to conflict. There is, consequently, an
abundance of culturally constituted techniques and processes, both formal and informal
ethnopraxes, for managing and resolving conflict around the world (e.g., Hawaiian ho’oponopono,
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 171
San xotla, Inuit song duels, Indian panchayats, Pakistani jirga system, Tongan kava drinking
circles, Somali shirs). The strategies found in non-Western societies may not be substantially
dissimilar from Western approaches to conflict resolution and may feature familiar concepts such
as mediation, negotiation, and third party intervention. However, there is great variation in the
form and content of these concepts and processes (e.g., the role and responsibilities of the third
party may differ; the format and outcome of the resolution process vary). There are also many
practices that are unique to the cultures in which they are found.
4. Cultural Response 2
John Paul Lederach, a conflict resolution scholar-practitioner at the Eastern Mennonite
University (USA), was amongst the first to move beyond the mere recognition of cultural factors
impeding conflict resolution to the creation of a specific methodological framework. From his
experiences conducting workshops on mediation and conflict management skills in Central
America, he observed that North American conflict resolution training and practises (specifically,
the mediation model) could not be effectively exported to other cultural settings. He concluded
that, firstly, the conflict resolution practitioner must situate the conflict in the disputant’s frame of
reference; he/she must understand how the participant interprets the boundaries and context of the
conflict. This “contextualisation” is the exercise of ethnoconflictology – the study of how people
make sense of conflict situations and the appropriate (cultural) common-sense methods of
resolving them. From this, Lederach developed a spectrum of conflict resolution training
approaches, which can be applied to intervention strategies: the prescriptive approach on one end
and the elicitive approach on the other.
4.1 Prescriptive Approach
The prescriptive approach is based on transferring conflict resolution techniques from one
setting to another, primarily referring to the transfer of Western methods to Non-Western settings.
Within this approach, the trainer (or third party) is assumed to be the expert. The expertise is
brought together in the form of a model that includes strategies to resolve conflict and techniques
to implement the approach. The goal of the training (or intervention) is to learn/accept the model.
There are two problems with the prescriptive approach: (1) it assumes a certain level of
universality; and (2) it assumes that the trainer (or third party’s) ways are best.
4.2 Elicitive Approach
In contrast, the elicitive approach is based on building or creating appropriate models from
the cultural resources available in a given setting. The trainer (or third party) acts as a catalyst and
facilitator drawing out the cultural understandings about conflict and conflict resolution. The goal
of the training (or intervention) is to elevate the participants’ own knowledge to an explicit level
and to use this common-sense knowledge as a basis for constructing intervention models for the
conflicts they will encounter in their own cultural context. The fundamental feature of the
elicitive approach is that it cannot operate apart from culture. Essentially, the approach aims to
get at what Avruch and Black call ethnoconflict theory and practice. However, there are problems
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 172
2
R.A. Rubinstein (1989), “Culture, International Affairs, and Multilateral Peacekeeping:
Confusing Process and Pattern”, Cultural Dynamics, 2 (1): 41-61.
with the elicitive model: (1) it takes time and involves considerable commitment; (2) the proposed
outcomes are not easily measured; (3) the creation process can often be painful for the
participants; and (4) multicultural settings represent an enormous challenge.
The elicitive approach has important implications for Peace Building-from-Below (Lesson
8). In the Peace Building-from-Below perspective, solutions are derived from cultural resources,
relying on community actors and local knowledge, including the cultural understanding of conflict
and its resolution. The convergence of bottom-up elicitive processes with top-down (state-level)
political negotiations produces a more holistic approach to conflict intervention. It should be
made clear that the prescriptive model is not to be discarded; the best conflict resolution training
and intervention programmes benefit from combining aspects of both models. On the one hand,
the prescriptive approach may provide participants/conflict parties with new techniques or
strategies for dealing with conflict; the elicitive approach, on the other hand, addresses the cultural
uniqueness of the context and validates/employs the local techniques and strategies.
5. Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping
Problems associated with culture have arisen, in part, from the expanded nature of
contemporary peacekeeping operations (although cultural issues are evident to some degree in
traditional missions): today’s missions are multiculturally composed and transnationally
performed across a diversity of cultural contexts. Everyone involved in a peacekeeping operation
– from those planning the mission, to the military and civilian peacekeepers deployed to carry it
out, to the local population upon whose territory it is carried out – is part of a cultural framework.
This framework provides the context within which the actors’ beliefs, values and actions are
constructed, expressed, interpreted and understood.
2
Culture is therefore of concern at both the
macro- and micro- levels of peacekeeping.
5.1 Macro-Level
At the macro-level, the international community frequently prescribes linear, top-down,
state-centric (official) conflict management aimed at the leadership of the conflicting parties (i.e.,
usually men, and often warlords and faction leaders without majority support of the community).
Often, local community leaders are not consulted and there is a failure to recognise and build-
upon the cultural strengths and resources of the local community (i.e., Peace Building-from-
below). There is an assumption that this approach is “right”, without considering the reality of the
conflict on the ground as viewed by the people directly involved. An example of an attempt to
establish stability is the negotiated settlement package that focuses on democratic elections aimed
at re-establishing political authority. Yet, this approach may not be traditionally appropriate nor
culturally accepted, as seen in the Paris Peace Agreements during the operation in Cambodia, or
the national reconciliation conferences initiated by UNOSOM in Somalia.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 173
The short-term, “quick-fix” approach ignores or trivialises the bottom-up perspective that
focuses on long-term conflict transformation. In other words, peacekeeping and peacemaking are
separated from Peace Building. Serious attention must be given to the cultural applicability of the
conflict resolution processes employed by the intervention and its participants.
5.2 Micro-Level
It is important to understand how culture influences the interpersonal interactions between
culturally diverse individuals and groups operating in a peacekeeping environment. The purpose
here is to understand the dynamics of cultural differences before they lead to misunderstandings
and conflict at the micro-level, which, in conflict resolution terms, may obstruct the macro-level
intervention process. This includes awareness of cultural differences in perspectives toward
conflict and conflict resolution, worldview, verbal and non-verbal language (e.g., space, touch,
gestures, facial expressions, use of time), and cultural rituals and practices.
5.3 Levels of Cultural Interaction in Peacekeeping Environments
Given the complex reality of contemporary peacekeeping intervention, understanding
cultural issues is vital. Intercultural contact in peacekeeping environments occurs on a number of
different levels, including between: (1) the national contingents that comprise a peacekeeping
force; (2) the diverse personnel who work with diplomatic, humanitarian and other civilian
agencies; (3) the military and civilian organisations involved in establishing and sustaining the
mission; (4) the peacekeepers (military and civilian personnel) and the local population; and (5)
the different cultural or ethnic groups who may be in conflict.
DIAGRAM 9-1: Cultural Interaction in Peacekeeping
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 174
Civilians-Civilians: The humanitarian community in any peacekeeping environment is
extremely diverse, in terms of both the nature of the organisation (e.g., its objectives, size,
expertise, quality) and the cultural diversity of its personnel. Unrecognised differences may
hamper co-ordination of humanitarian activities.
Military-Military: Every international peacekeeping force is composed of troops from a
multitude of nations and cultures, the distinctiveness of which is not erased by a UN uniform,
a blue beret or a blue helmet. Each troop-contributing nation differs in mission objectives and
standards, rules of engagement, use of force, staff procedures, chains of command, equipment,
training and doctrine, language, and cultural customs and ethos. Discontinuities not only
hamper the military efficiency of the mission, but influence local perceptions regarding the
credibility and legitimacy of the operation.
Military-Civilian: An organisational culture is the way a group is organised and how it
functions, the way an organisation approaches its tasks and its relationships with other
organisations. There are several very different organisational cultures operating in
contemporary peacekeeping environments: international/diplomatic (e.g., UN, OSCE),
military, civilian police, NGO (international humanitarian, human rights, development and
conflict resolution, and local/grassroots). Each operates within its own cultural framework,
according to its own understanding of the conflict situation and its own intervention policies
and practices. Because of the different organisational cultures, military and civilian agencies
frequently clash over the basic questions of the means and ends of the mission. They differ in
methods of decision-making, approaches to accountability, operational and management styles
(command structures, hierarchy and procedure versus fast-moving flexibility and
decentralisation), use of force, approaches to time and success (short-term objectives versus
long-term processes), media styles (secrecy and control versus theatrical), and relations with
the local populations. Differences may lead to misunderstandings, or create negative
stereotypes and suspicions that further impede collaboration. The need to promote better
understanding of each other’s cultural organisation and function is essential to enhance co-
ordination and co-operation in the field.
Peacekeepers (Military/Civilian) and Local Communities: In recent peacekeeping operations,
the principles of consent and impartiality have been seriously challenged for the sake of
humanitarian intervention (e.g., Bosnia, Somalia, Rwanda). Faced with the immediate
requirements to secure the environment and save lives, peacekeeping personnel may sacrifice
cultural sensitivity in their interactions with those affected by the conflict. In-depth pre-
deployment cultural training about the conflict parties is not seen as a priority; peacekeeping
actors frequently arrive in the field with little or no knowledge of the cultural customs, local
understanding of the conflict and local resources for its resolution. However, maintaining
good relations (based on consent and legitimacy) with the local communities is a prerequisite
for successful missions. To preserve consent and legitimacy, better and fuller cultural
understanding of the conflict and the local population’s traditions is required: consent will be
promoted if the parties feel understood and are made shareholders of the peace process;
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 175
intervention will be viewed as legitimate if peacekeepers invest time to understand and
support the local resources and institutions.
6. Case Study: Intervention in Somalia
The Somali civil war broke out in September 1991 when various factions attempted to
gain control over the political and military vacuum resulting from the collapse of President Siad
Barre’s regime in January 1990. In an effort to assist in terminating the civil war and in securing a
stable environment, two UN peacekeeping operations and a US-led multinational peacekeeping
operations were deployed. UNOSOM I was established in April 1992, under Chapter VI, to
provide humanitarian relief. In December 1992, it was accompanied by a US-led coalition force
(UNITAF) to restore order to the country. In May 1993, UNITAF was replaced by UNOSOM II
operating under a peace enforcement mandate (Chapter VII), until March 1995 when the UN
pulled all its forces out of the country.
While the operations in Somalia presented the international community with numerous
unexpected challenges, the intervention clearly illustrated the cultural challenges facing
contemporary peacekeeping. Throughout the various phases of the intervention, cultural issues
are evident at both the micro- and macro-levels. The international community’s experience in
Somalia clearly demonstrates the critical need for cultural understanding at all levels of
peacekeeping intervention.
6.1 The Peacekeeping Force
Given the size and diversity of the peacekeeping force in Somalia (more than 30 nations
contributed up to 37,000 troops to the three multinational forces), cultural differences in
peacekeeping approach, command, logistics, language and pre-deployment preparation were
present. One of the most observable problems resulted from divergent national military cultures’
interpretation and execution of the rules of engagement, in particular the use of force. For
example, in disarming the Somali militias, US troops sought to coerce co-operation, using pro-
active enforcement techniques. In contrast, the approach of other units (e.g., the Australians) was
based on dialogue, mediation and fostering local support. Command and control was another
challenge that reduced the mission’s effectiveness. Some contingents would not work with or for
others contingents. Some forces were dissatisfied with the American-led UNITAF; they received
orders from home and pursued their own political agendas. This gave rise to severe tensions and
feudal fiefdoms between contingents, causing co-ordination problems and risking the
multinational force’s legitimacy among the Somali community.
6.2 Military and Civilian Co-operation
Although military-civilian co-operation was sufficient to improve security and provide
humanitarian assistance (largely as a result of the Civil-Military Operations Centre (CMOC)), some
some problems emerged as a result of cultural misunderstanding. From the very onset, the military
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 176
3
J. Dworken (1995), “Restore Hope: Co-ordinating Relief Operations”, Joint Forces Quarterly, 8: 19-20.
4
P. Kieseker (1993), “Relationships Between Non-Government Organisations and Multinational Forces in the Field”, in H. Smith
(ed.), Peacekeeping: Challenges for the Future, Canberra: Australian Defence Force Academy, p.68.
and civilian components had very different perceptions of their mission and their roles: the military
believed that their primary responsibility was to secure the environment – a military role which
would indirectly assist humanitarian agencies – and viewed the humanitarian agencies as having a
supporting role. The UN agencies and NGOs, however, believed that their responsibilities were
primary, and that the military was there in a supplemental role to directly support their humanitarian
efforts. As a result of their ill-defined roles, the respective organisational cultures dictated the
disparate intervention strategies the military and civilian components adopted and the unco-
operative attitudes they developed towards each other. This strained relations and had a significant
effect on co-ordination. In several cases, the military and humanitarian agencies failed to involve
each other in decisions that required co-operative military-civilian relations; neither side brought the
other into their planning process until it was nearly complete.
Differences in organisational culture also created mutual suspicion and negative
stereotyping:
The military was frustrated by what they viewed as disorganization and waste
growing out of a tendency not to conduct detailed planning. Individually, they saw relief
workers as young, liberal, anti-military, academic, self-righteous, incompetent, expatriate
cowboys who came to an area for a short time to “do good” without fully considering the
consequences. Officers simply did not see women in their late-twenties with Birkenstock
sandals and “Save the Whales” T-shirts as experts worthy of consultation. At the same
time, many relief workers saw military officers as inflexible, conservative, and
bureaucratic. They found them insensitive to Somali suffering and viewed their concern
over “mission creep” as obsessive, an excuse to do the minimum and go home.
3
Some soldiers displayed an attitude of “only we understand the security situation”, leading
them to adopt a dictatorial role towards the NGOs. This attitude was unwelcome and unproductive
as the soldiers were less knowledgeable about the cultural, social and political realities of the
situation.
4
On the other hand, the military found it difficult to work with humanitarian organisations
because of their high turn-over rates. The efficiency of humanitarian co-ordination was also reduced
because of the significant numbers of NGOs operating without proper experience or understanding
of the country and, often, without the willingness to consult those with knowledge. Instead, they
were inclined to “do their own thing”. The tendency for aid agencies to compete, rather than
collaborate, also exaggerated differences and made co-ordination difficult.
6.3 Misunderstanding Somali Culture
The most significant issues affecting peacekeeping in Somalia were those related to the
failure to understand Somali culture before and during the intervention. Lack of cultural
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 177
5
Ibid.
understanding started from the highest level of decision-making at the very beginning. After
months of delay, the UN finally recognised the impending crisis in Somalia and its immediate
response was to send in forces. Mohamed Sahnoun, Special Representative to the Secretary
General, however, urged the UN not to send troops until the conditions had been negotiated: the
warlords were against UN military intervention and the presence of troops would intensify the
fighting. Sahnoun eventually persuaded the factions to accept 500 troops to secure the delivery of
humanitarian aid, yet the UN’s response was to continue to send in troops until, in the end, 30,000
troops were deployed in Somalia. Sahnoun has openly criticised this strategy as it was applied
without any real understanding of the cultural conditions on the ground.
Many contingents arrived in the mission area without knowledge of Somalia, its history and
culture, or the conditions on the ground. As a result, there were significant differences in how the
national troops dealt with the local population, including indiscriminate use of force, human rights
abuses, and regular harassment by some troops. The unfortunate behaviour of a small number of
troops damaged the credibility of the UN mission, leading to mistrust and estrangement from the
local population. However, some contingents took the time to enhance their understanding of
Somali culture. For example, prior to their deployment, the Australian contingent consulted the
NGO CARE Australia to assist with preparation. The Australians also adopted a conscientious
“marketing approach” in Baidoa during Operation Restore Hope: they were “marketeers” who were
interested in the “customer”; they were “consumer-oriented”, visiting the NGOs and Somali
communities and asking “what can we do for you?”.
5

There are several cultural features of Somali society that required particular understanding to
effectively engage in sustainable conflict resolution activities. Lack of attention to these elements
most certainly affected the outcome of UNOSOM/UNITAF. Analysis using the ethnoconflict
theory/ethnopraxis framework or elicitive approach may have better informed the processes
employed by the international community in the Somali case.
Somali Ethnoconflict Theory and Ethnopraxis
Economic, Social and Political Structures
! 60-70% of Somalis practice pastoralism: camels are the base of material and cultural life; the remaining Somalis
are agropastoralists/agriculturalists occupying stable villages, and fishermen and traders on the coast.
! No titles are attached to pasturage, except those resulting from force.
! There is fierce competition for scarce resources.
! Society is based on nomadic, communal living.
! There is a complex system of kinship (i.e., families, extended families, lineages, sub-clans, clans, clan families,
and nation).
! There is a social code based on traditions and customary law, which defines the values and rules of behaviour.
! The clan is the most important social and political unit; it fosters a sense of community and protects its members.
! Traditionally, there is no centralised authority in Somali culture; power was exercised through flexible and
constantly shifting alliances of kinship groups.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 178
! The most stable political grouping within a clan is the diya-paying group, which is responsible for the collective
payment and receipt of blood compensation (usually in camels – 100 for a man’s life, 50 for a woman’s).
! The informal clan council (shir) of men acts as a government institution and a court for the arbitration of disputes;
decisions in the shir are reached by consensus.
! The clan is led by respected elders; they are born orators and have the ability to debate and negotiate.
Religious Structure
! Somalis practice a mixture of Islam (Sufi) and indigenous religious traditions.
! Islamic law (ShariNa) is used with traditional customary law (xeer).
! Somalis distinguish between “men of God” (wadaad, or sheikh) and “men of the spear” (waranleh, or warriors).
! The wadaad often act as mediators in inter-clan feuds.
Language
! Somalis share a common language.
! Until 1972, there was no official system of writing the Somali language.
! Somali culture is strongly rooted in oral traditions; Somalis are often referred to as the “nation of poets”.
! The spoken word is still the key to power and influence; oratory and poetry is the primary mode of mass
communication and knowledge/information dissemination.
! Poetry is intimately connected with local politics and clan feuds; it has been both a source of violence and peace.
Ethnopsychology
! The Somali worldview is based on the need to survive in a harsh environment.
! They differentiate between “those who are near” (sokeeye) and “those who are distant” ( shisheeye); depending
on the context, someone may be a friend or an enemy.
! Somalis are deeply suspicious of non-Somali foreigners and members of other clans.
! The traditional greeting – “Is it Peace?” – shouted at a distance while approaching, is used as a literal request for
information.
Ethnopraxes
! Management of intra- and inter-clan conflicts through a religious and political moral order or commonwealth
(umma) upheld by kinship xeer and Islamic law
! Resort to force is viewed as culturally accepted procedure for regulating conflict; the purpose of the feud is to
redress wrongs, acquire/maintain honour, gain access to resources. Settlements are reached by the payment
of blood compensation or arbitration.
Conflict between clans is regulated by a neutral tribunal or panel of arbitrators ( guurti), or through the use of male
elders as mediators (ergo).
Within clans, open councils (shirs) act as conflict resolution forums, often held under the acacia tree; failure to settle
results in expulsion from group. Shir Nabadeeds are large peace councils assembled to instigate conciliation
between conflicting clans. Shirs are characterised by lengthy, open negotiations and the use of poetry.
Although women are excluded from the councils, they fulfil an important role as peacemaker; because of
intermarriage between clans, they act as go-betweens or intermediaries
6.4 Politics and the Somali Clan
The importance of the clan system as a political institution and a source of pride and social
security in Somali society was misunderstood. The notion of collective responsibility (embedded in
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 179
Somali customary law and diya, or blood money, payments) requires the clan to protect and support its
members. Despite this fundamental feature of Somali culture, the international community held
General Aideed individually responsible for his failure to co-operate in finding a solution to the conflict.
When the international community tried to marginalise Aideed, it failed to realise that it also took on
his clan who would support and protect their leader from a “hostile clan”. In their desperate attempt to
nullify Aideed’s power base – by offering US$25,000 for information leading to his capture –
UNOSOM II put him in a stronger position than before.
The UN’s insistence that a clan should hold the presidency of the country was also based on an
important misunderstanding of the clan system and the decentralised nature of traditional Somali
political institutions. Rather than promoting the maintenance of traditional clan equilibrium and power-
sharing, UNSOM’s efforts were concentrated on reconciling the two main warlords (Aideed and Ali
Mahdi). This approach gave the main Somali warlords power and authority which they desired, but
which they legitimately did not possess. Negotiations and reconciliation conferences that focused
largely on the leaders the UN believed were the most powerful at the time upset the traditional balance
of the Somali kinship system and failed to draw on the local resources.
6.5 Time and Talk
The Somali conception of time is considerably different from Western conceptions. In the West,
time is highly scheduled and broken down into minutes, hours, days, and so forth. As nomads, Somali
time is traditionally measured by the movements of herds and the availability of food; thus, time is slow
and unscheduled. Much of the nomads’ time was spent assembled under the acacia tree, debating,
discussing, and reciting poetry. This has influenced their dynamic circular negotiating and problem-
solving style, in contrast to the linear style of, for example, Western negotiation: Somalis will take an
initial agreement made today as a point of departure for further negotiations tomorrow. This key cultural
difference explains much of the problem encountered by international diplomacy in Somalia throughout
the crisis. SRSG Sahnoun, UN Special Envoy Robert Oakley and others (including peacekeepers on the
ground working with local communities) adapted their diplomatic styles in accordance with Somali
culture (i.e., meeting frequently and patiently with traditional community leaders). However, the UN’s
desire for a rapid political solution contradicted the Somali oral tradition of “sitting carpet”. The UN
made relentless demands and placed often unrealistic time constraints on the Somalis and the peace
process.
6.6 An Oral Society
Somali culture is rooted in oral traditions; poetry and oratory play crucial roles in politics, war
and peace. At the beginning, the UN was advised of the importance of effective radio broadcasting in
the presentation of UN aims and policies and the use of oratory in counselling for peace. They were
ignored; instead, the UN chose to drop leaflets over Somalia’s primarily oral population. Eventually,
UNITAF’s Joint Psychological Operations Task Force (JPOTF) acknowledged this cultural oversight
and, in addition to leaflet drops, the JPOTF broadcast news on military activities, public service
announcements and messages of peace in Somali.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 180
6.7 National Reconciliation: Top-Down or Bottom-Up
Difficulties in cultural understanding in Somalia resulted in the UN’s prescribed top-down
process for national reconciliation that thwarted early initiatives by Sahnoun and Oakley to build on
local resources and traditional institutions. (Although Somali society was engaged in a protracted
conflict, traditional means for resolving conflict were available.) The potential for a bottom-up,
grass-roots approach to the Somali conflict was ignored by the UN in favour of hierarchical political
structures and formal, highly publicised, costly peace conferences.
In March 1993, the UN sponsored a national reconciliation conference in Addis Ababa, with
the intention of being a two-track approach. In response to widespread criticism preceding the
conference, efforts were made to broaden the representation, enabling traditional and religious
leaders, women, intellectuals, artists and local NGO representatives to attend. However, while the
faction leaders were lavishly treated, community representatives were only able to participate
because of generous sponsorships given by international NGOs. Although community
representatives were able to make their voices heard, the signatories of the agreement were the 15
faction leaders. This divorced the faction leaders from the larger clan groups and further empowered
their illegitimate positions. Furthermore, the UN attempted to establish transitional mechanisms of
governance at the district, regional and national levels. The Addis Ababa Agreement proposed that
the Transitional National Council (TNC) would be the “sole repository of Somali sovereignty” and
the “prime political authority, having legislative functions”. Imposition of the Western concept of
government frustrated the Somalis because it was incompatible with Somali political culture rooted
in decentralised, egalitarian, community-based systems of power.
The provisional government structure was essentially a top-down structure, with political
emphasis on the TNC. The Regional Councils and District Councils – in which composition
appeared to indicate a bottom-up approach through local delegations – were dependent structures.
Power and responsibility were delegated from the TNC down to the RCs and DCs. In the end, the
desired two-track approach to peace – with peacemaking at the grass-roots level parallelling a
process of accommodating warlords at the top level – was dominated by the warlords.
In March 1994, the UN attempted to revive the process of political reconciliation by
convening another meeting in Nairobi, only this time the approach was clearly top-down. Aideed
and Ali Mahdi were brought together for face-to-face negotiations, resulting in the signing of the
Nairobi Declaration, a manifesto on national reconciliation. The Nairobi meeting brought widespread
criticism as it was dominated by the same warlords who were responsible for the civil strife and the
death and starvation of thousands of Somalis. Critics argue that the UN dealt with the warlords as if
they were national leaders and, once again, ignored the critical role that elders, traditional leaders,
and women play in resolving conflict. Faction leaders used the UN-sponsored national reconciliation
conferences to enhance their own prestige within their clans rather than to seek a genuine solution.
The UN practice of holding short formal peace conferences in regional capitals, which
isolated members from their constituencies, violated Somali practices. Somali peacemakers must be
able to process the information, negotiate, and consider their progress regularly. These formal
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 181
6
Adapted from, M. Bradbury (1994), The Somali Conflict: Prospects for Peace. Oxford: Oxfam.
meetings did not allow the Somalis to meet in an atmosphere where they could speak openly and
confidentially to one another. The international community also failed to acknowledge that
traditional Somali reconciliation is an ongoing process of consultations, assemblies and negotiations
and, therefore, take a considerable amount of time.
What proved more successful than the large national/factional conferences were the locally
and regionally based clan reconciliation conferences, which, for the most part, did not involve
UNOSOM. Serious attention to cultural factors enhanced these peace processes: they were always
conducted in local areas, enabling the participation of elders and other community members and
ensuring that these representatives were not isolated from their constituencies; they allowed
sufficient time for confidence-building and reconciliation; and they employed traditional methods of
resolving conflict. These activities were most prominent in the successful grass-roots peacemaking
processes in the north (e.g., the three month-long meeting in Boroma, which led to a National
Charter for the Republic of Somaliland, used shirs and a guurti, comprised of elders from three
major clans in the region). A comparison of shir Somali and shir UN is in Table 9-2.
6
TABLE 9-2: Comparison of Shir Somali and Shir UN
SHIR SOMALI SHIR UN
C Involves legitimate representatives;
community has confidence in them
C Lack of confidence in representatives
C Uses traditional methods of problem-
solving
C Uses “Western” methods of problem-
solving
C Uses experienced mediators (elders)
chosen by the community
C Involves politicians and diplomats,
often uninformed of Somali culture
C Elders have authority C Authority with the UN
C Held inside the country C Some held outside the country
C Limited Agenda C Ambitious agenda
C Common rules and values (xeer) C Lack of common xeer
C Ability of elders to enforce/ensure
implementation of agreements
C Lack of confidence in organisers and
facilitators
C Consensus decision-making C Western democratic
C Equal representation by parties C Unequal representation
C Community support C External support
C Open time-table C Limited time-table
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 182
Many of the problems that the international community faced in Somalia have been
recognised, and attempts have been made by the UN to address them. One of the major lessons to be
learned from the Somali experience is that cultural understanding is an important tool in the third
party’s conflict resolution tool-box. Cultural training needs to be strategically included in the
preparation and training of anyone involved in a peacekeeping mission.
7. Building Cultural Awareness Skills
Culture and cultural differences can have powerful effects on intercultural interactions; these
differences can lead to misunderstanding and conflict. Yet, we can successfully manage differences
in our intercultural interactions if we: (1) understand our own cultural frameworks; (2) understand
others’ cultural frameworks; and (3) see cultural differences not as obstacles, but as starting points
for unique and creative problem-solving opportunities.
7.1 Awareness of Your Own Cultural Frameworks
We all belong to a variety of cultural groups; the implicit and explicit beliefs, assumptions
and rules embedded in those groups guide our everyday thinking and acting. Yet, we often do not
think about how our cultural learning has influenced our thoughts and behaviours, particularly our
experiences with conflict. The first step in becoming more culturally skilled for interacting with
others effectively and dealing with conflict constructively, is understanding how personal cultural
experiences have shaped our conceptions of conflict and approaches to managing and resolving
conflict.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 183
Exercise: Exploring Your Cultural Frameworks
Aims:
C To demonstrate that individuals belong to many different cultural groups and to
show that culture is not solely bound up with ethnicity;
C To encourage the student to develop knowledge about the many groups with
which he/she affiliate and how these groups have influenced his/her beliefs,
values and behaviours about conflict and conflict resolution.
Method: Think of the many groups which you have found yourself a part; whether
your membership in the group is voluntary or involuntary, past or present, you still
learn beliefs, values and behaviours from that group. Write down these groups.
Consideration/Discussion:
C How have these cultural groups influenced your beliefs and values about
conflict?
C How have these groups influenced the way you express and/or respond to
conflict as a conflict party?
C What culturally appropriate ways for handling/resolving conflict do they
provide?
C How do your own values, assumptions and styles affect your functioning
as a third party in multicultural conflict situations?
C How might they influence your peacekeeping role?
7.2 Awareness of Others’ Cultural Frameworks
Many of the things we take for granted may lead to ineffective communication and increase
the potential for misunderstanding and conflict, particularly when we know little about the people we
are interacting with. It is unlikely that we will have knowledge of all the diversity of cultures around
the globe. However, it is important that we are aware of the dimensions of cultural differences that
are relevant to communication and conflict resolution and that we are open to these differences. It is
also helpful to have a basic understanding of the specific cultural groups you are working with (e.g.,
Somalis in Somalia, Albanians and Serbs in Kosovo, Indonesians and East Timorese in East Timor).
You can gain an understanding by conducting an ethnoconflict theory analysis, or by considering
some of the cultural issues given below (which is also applicable to your own cultural groups). Of
course, this list is not exhaustive. In your intercultural interactions you are likely to encounter many
others. The important point is to be receptive to these differences and to work with them, not against
them.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 184
CULTURAL ISSUES TO CONSIDER
Perspectives Toward Conflict and Conflict Resolution
< Orientations Toward Conflict: perception of conflict, conflict values, expression of conflict
< Orientations Toward Conflict Resolution: format of process, role and responsibilities of third party,
appropriate setting
< Criteria for Resolution: objectives of process, conclusion (What signifies a resolution?)
Worldview
< Individualistic Cultures: The individual’s goals are more important than the group’s; people look after
themselves. Conflict resolution is aimed at separating the conflict issue from the other party, and
achieving independent self needs.
< Collectivistic Cultures: The group’s goals are more important than the individual’s; people belong to
collectives that look after each other. Conflict resolution does not separate the conflict issue from the
person; the wider community is involved to assist in re-establishing group harmony.
Intercultural Communication
< Verbal Language: form, content (meaning), values
< Non-Verbal Language: space and touch, body gestures, facial expressions, eye contact, silence
< Use of Time: monochromic (time is sacred, people engage in one activity at a time, time is
compartmentalized, schedules to serve self-needs) and polychronic (involvement of people and doing
multiple tasks at once, e.g., CR is part of everyday life, completion of transaction is more important than
sticking to pre-set schedule, appointments are not taken seriously, emphasizes flexible nature of time)
7.3 Cultural Analysis in Intercultural Conflict Resolution
The first task of a third party in conflict situations is to conduct a preliminary cultural
analysis. The third party cannot assume that all understandings are shared between them and the
conflict parties. Minimally, such an investigation should consider the most basic cultural dimensions
(i.e, those listed above). More useful, however, is to make explicit the underlying assumptions and
understandings of conflict and conflict resolution held by all parties; that is, articulating the
common-sense understandings of conflict (ethnoconflict theories) and the local acceptable
techniques for resolving conflicts (ethnopraxes). By doing so, the third party gains some insight into
the cultural meanings of the conflict parties, along with a clear understanding of his/her own. When
conducting a cultural analysis, the following items should be considered:
Conflict Parties: Who are the parties to the conflict? Who else may have input into or be affected
by decisions over the issues? Who do the parties see as individuals or groups whose interests should
be represented? What do the parties’ cultures tell them about the nature of conflict and the
appropriate behaviour when in conflict?
Third Party: What biases, values or preferences do you have that may affect your participation in
the process? Is there a third party in whom the parties would feel a high level of trust for cultural or
linguistic reasons?
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 185
Conflict Issues: What are the issues and concerns? Are there hidden issues that relate to the history
between the parties? What is the cultural common-sense of the parties regarding what to do when
such issues emerge? What values and beliefs may affect the conflict situation?
Process: What kind of process fits with the cultural common-sense of the parties? What do the
parties want from the process (e.g., a chance to tell the other how they experienced the conflict, a
chance to prove they were right, a decision, an apology, an agreement, a healing ritual)? What setting
would feel most comfortable for all of the parties involved (e.g., formal/informal, public/private,
indoors/outdoors)? What time framework would be appropriate (e.g., long, open-ended discussions,
structured and scheduled meetings)?
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 186
Further Reading
Recommended Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict
Resolution. Cambridge: Polity Press (pp. 61-3, 199, 211-215)
Avruch, K. (1999), Culture & Conflict Resolution. Washington, DC: United States Institute of Peace
Press.
Duffey, T. (2000), “Cultural Issues in Contemporary Peacekeeping”. In T. Woodhouse and O.
Ramsbotham (eds.), Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, London: Frank Cass, pp. 142-168.
Kimmel, P.R. (1998), “Cultural and Ethnic Issues of Conflict and Peacekeeping”, in H. Langholtz
(ed.), The Psychology of Peacekeeping, Westport, CT: Praeger.
Lederach, J.P. (1995), Preparing for Peace: Conflict Transformation Across Cultures. Syracuse,
New York: Syracuse University Press.
Slim, H. (1996), “The Stretcher and the Drum: Civil-Military Relations in Peace Support
Operations”, International Peacekeeping, 3 (2): 123-140.
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 187
LESSON 9
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Culture is:
a. a stable pattern of behaviour that members of a group share
b. an unchanging set of traditions or customs in a group
c. the changing beliefs, values and behaviours shared by members of a group
d. large, political/ethnic groupings only
2. Ethnoconflict theory refers to:
a. the local common sense about conflict
b. a framework for understanding the sources of conflict
c. cultural techniques and processes for resolving conflict
d. traditions found only in traditional, small-scale societies
3. The prescriptive approach to conflict resolution training and intervention is based on:
a. the prescription of universal models
b. transferring techniques or processes from one setting to another
c. the idea that the third party’s methods are best
d. all of the above
4. The elicitive approach has important implications for:
a. the application of generic models of conflict resolution
b. Track One intervention
c. Peace Building-from-below
5. Which of the following does not refer to an organisational cultural group?
a. military force
b. UNHCR
c. OSCE
d. Somali community
6. What principles of peacekeeping may be preserved if good relations with local communities are
established? (Choose two.)
a. non-use of force
b. legitimacy
c. consent
d. partiality
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 188
7. Which of the following is an example of cultural differences among the various military
peacekeeping contingents in Somalia?
a. different interpretations of the rules of engagement
b. some troops refused to do anything
c. different attitudes towards the distribution of humanitarian aid
d. there were no cultural differences between troops
8. Which of the following examples illustrates the lack of co-operation between the military and
civilian agencies working in Somalia?
a. use of CMOC
b. mutual negative stereotyping
c. involvement of each other in planning and preparation
d. understanding each other’s role
9. List three aspects of Somali culture that were misunderstood or ignored by the international
community in its peacekeeping intervention?
10. Which two actors made careful attempts to adapt their conflict management styles when dealing
with the Somalis?
a. SRSG Mohamed Sahnoun
b. SG Boutros Boutros-Ghali
c. General Aideed
d. US Special Envoy Robert Oakley
Answer Key: 1-c; 2-a; 3-d; 4-c; 5-d; 6-b,c; 7-a; 8-b; 9-politics, clan system,
concept of time, negotiating style, oratory/poetry, traditional means for
managing conflict; 10-a,d
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 189
Exercise: Cultural Scenarios
Aims:
C To explore the cultural dimensions of conflict and conflict intervention;
C To engage with problem-solving activities in different cultural contexts.
Method: Read each of the following scenarios and follow the directions given at the bottom of each
case. Consider/discuss the cultural issues that emerge in the situation.
Suspicions of Intimidation: Military-Civilian Co-operation
You have a background of service working for NGOs in Africa. You have recently joined the UN team
in Kosovo. As part of your duties working with UNMIK, you are based in a building that is used to give
advice and information about the civil registration process, as well as information about economic
development policy in which UNMIK is engaged. This work has been generally low-key and trouble
free but you are aware that very few, if any, of the small local Serb population seem to be coming into
the building to seek advice or information. Part of your briefing has been to ensure that information
about the process is available to all in the community. You suspect that there may be some intimidation
along the route to the building discouraging Serbs from making the journey to the service. You know
that some of the Serb males in the village are currently given a military escort to their place of work in
the mornings, and back home in the evenings.
You decide to find out if some similar arrangement might be needed to encourage Serb access to the
registration process, or to information about business enterprise and development opportunities. This
will mean finding out if they are being threatened. You can only do this by seeking KFOR guidance. You
visit the Military-Civilian Co-ordination Cell and meet the commander, a British Army Lieutenant
Colonel. You ask him to send either a police team from CIVPOL or a military unit to check out the
security situation in the vicinity of your building. He does not seem interested and seems preoccupied
with “more important military matters”. He says he only has enough personnel to deal with incidents that
have happened, not with imaginary concerns about what might happen. He tells you to go back to your
job, and let him worry about security concerns.
CBroadly, what are the cultural issues in this scenario?
CHow would you handle this situation?
CYou may wish to work with someone on this scenario. Adopt the roles and explore how each member
of the group playing the UNMIK role succeeds in getting some response from the officer.
Tension Between Humanitarian Staff
You are the programme director of the humanitarian relief programme in East Timor and have convened
a meeting of your staff members who are from several different countries. At the first meeting, a
northern European left the room in frustration because – after two hours – there still was no discussion
of the important business regarding how relief would be distributed in the area. Instead, everyone –
Lesson 9/Culture, Conflict Resolution, and Peacekeeping 190
excited, overwhelmed, and anxious by their recent arrival in East Timor– was still engaging in friendly
conversation. The northern European accused you of incompetence for allowing the meeting to drift.
As he left the room, an African observer remarked to his friend, “The Swiss are always so pushy!”. A
British representative stood up and calmly told everyone to stop being so emotional and to get on with
the meeting. You continue with the meeting. Later you reflect on the events of the meeting; you do not
wish this to happen again. Lives are at risk.
C Why did this meeting getting out of control?
C What cultural factors explain this situation? How would you have continued with this meeting?
C How will you handle these differences at your next meeting?
C Is this scenario simplistic because of perceived stereotypes or are there deep-rooted cultural
assumptions playing out that need to be carefully considered?
A Reconciliation Initiative
You are a military officer working with UNOSOM. Your unit has just been sent to a city outside of
Mogadishu to reconcile the community. There are several clan-based factions in the area. The political
and security situation is fragile. Most of the soldiers in your contingent lack clear understanding of the
situation. However, you start off by bringing together a small group of elders from both sides to meet
in a neutral town north of the city. The elders meet regularly and the process appears to be progressing.
However, one day, a larger group of elders approaches you; it seems that they represent various clans
from around the city and are disappointed with your efforts. They accuse you of not understanding the
Somali situation. You learn that they wish to take part in the negotiations. You agree to allow all
interested parties to assemble for discussion. It is then that you realise there are more than 150 delegates.
This is not going to be an easy task for you.
C What were the problems at the start?
C What would you have done differently if you had been better informed?
C How will you conduct the Peace Building activities now?
C How will you prepare for these activities?
C What cultural dimensions may need to be considered?
C How will you implement a reconciliation process?
Further Consider/Discussion:
CWhat cultural challenges have you faced in a peacekeeping operation or in any other situation?
CWhat other cultural issues are likely to emerge in peacekeeping environments?
CHow might you handle cultural differences in your peacekeeping role?
LESSON 10
GENDER ISSUES IN PEACEKEEPING
1. Introduction
2. Gender and Conflict Management Styles
3. Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations
4. Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
5. A Gender Analysis of Conflict
6. The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace
Building
Our understanding of war and peace would be deepened if conflict analysts were willing to take
as a starting point the men and women who make war, and also those who are complicit in it,
support it, benefit from it, or suffer from it.
- Judy El-Bushra, “Transforming Conflict”
We explicitly recognise the particular and distinctive peacemaking roles played by women in
conflict afflicted communities.
Women and women’s organisations are often reservoirs of important local capacities which can
be used in Peace Building activities.
- International Alert, Code of Conduct
In war-torn societies…women often keep society going. They…are often the prime advocates of
peace. We must ensure that women are enabled to play a full part in peace negotiations, in peace
processes, in peace missions.
- UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 192
LESSON OBJECTIVES
This lesson outlines the potential impact of gender on conflict behaviour and on conflict
management styles. The significance of gender on the conduct of peacekeeping operations is
considered, where men take predominantly military roles and women predominantly civilian roles.
Efforts to encourage increased participation by women in peacekeeping operations are outlined. The
theoretical basis for understanding the impact of gender on conflict is discussed and the role of local
women in peacemaking and Peace Building is identified as an important dimension of peace
processes.
After studying the material contained in this lesson, the student will be able to:
– Understand the basic concepts relating to gender and conflict resolution;
– Consider how gender influences conflict and conflict management styles;
– Identify the gender issues in contemporary peacekeeping;
– Discuss the gender critique of conflict resolution theory and practice;
– Recognise the gendered nature of conflict and conflict intervention;
– Integrate gender awareness and analysis into his/her peacekeeping activities.
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 193
1
J. Maxwell and D. Maxwell (1989), “Male and Female Mediation Styles and Their Effectiveness”. Paper presented
at the National Conference of Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution, Montreal, February 28-March5.
Linda Stamato 1992,. Voice. Place. and Process: Research on Gender. Negotiation. and (onílict Resolution`.
Meaiatiov Ovarterty. Vol.9. No.4. Summer. pp.3¯5-386.
V.D. \all. Jr. and M.L. Dewhurst 1991,. Mediator Gender: (ommunication Diííerences in Resol·ed and
Unresol·ed Mediations`. Meaiatiov Ovarterty. Vol. 9. No.1. pp 63-85.
1. Introduction
The field of Conflict Resolution has traditionally ignored issues of gender in both theory and
practice. Increasingly, however, gender can be seen to be moving onto the agenda from several
directions. Firstly, gender is important in conflict resolution because it is one variable that shapes an
individual’s cultural framework – his or her values, beliefs, and behaviours. Gender may affect how
individuals express, manage and mediate conflict. Secondly, because conflict affects men and
women differently, it follows that conflict intervention has differential impact. This includes macro-
and micro-level conflict resolution activities in peacekeeping environments.
GENDER
Gender refers to the socially constructed roles, responsibilities, norms, expectations and
stereotypes accorded to women and men (e.g., in such areas as division of labour, power-
sharing, decision-making). A gender perspective implies analyses of social relations between
women and men (girls and boys) in a given context (i.e., a culturally and historically
determined context).
Gender:
is about women and men;
is not biologically determined;
varies from culture to culture and within social, political and economic contexts;
varies over time;
is learned, which implies that gender roles can be changed.
2. Gender and Conflict Management Styles
Recent research has explored the “gender factor” and its role in disputing, negotiating and
resolving differences. It focuses on the patterns of differences between men and women and how
they experience conflict and its management.
2.1 Men and Women as Conflict Parties
Research has examined whether men and women’s different realities lead them to interpret,
understand, express and handle conflict differently.
1
According to this research, women have an
alternative way of making sense of the world and acting within it, based on social care and
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 194
relationships. Thus, women tend to discuss issues in more depth, express feelings and concerns
more openly, and use more conciliatory or problem-solving strategies to resolve the conflict. Men,
on the other hand, use more rational, linear language to talk about their conflicts, are less likely to
express their feelings and more likely to talk about issues of justice and fairness, and adopt a more
competitive approach to managing conflict. While these studies have concluded that there are
gender differences in conflict managing behaviour, these differences are influenced by a number of
variables (e.g., context, power, status, gender of other parties).
2.2 Men and Women as Third Parties
Studies have also examined gender as it relates to the role, functioning and style of
mediators and the effectiveness of the third party. According to these studies, women are more
likely to act as informal peacemakers in their organisations and communities: they are willing to
provide support for people to tell their story, and they help to re-frame parties’ understandings of the
situation and of each other. Female mediators have been found to be more comprehensive in their
approach – probing, trying to get at the underlying problems in order to attain long-term solutions;
male mediators’ style has been characterised as short-term, task oriented and moving parties
aggressively toward agreement. Research suggests that agreements mediated by women are more
likely to last; those mediated by men are more likely to be broken. Parties have also expressed
greater satisfaction with the mediation process with female mediators than with males. However,
consistent with cultural stereotypes, women mediators have been perceived as less competent than
men, even when the dispute was resolved by the women and not the men.
The studies confirm the validity of examining gender differences in communication and
third party intervention. They enable men and women to understand what factors may be
influencing their conflicts and how to manage them. How conflict is viewed, felt and understood
across gender (and culture) should become part of the process for resolving it. However, the studies
also demonstrate the pervasive stereotyping that accompanies such dichotomies; as such, the
conclusions must be considered carefully.
3. Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations
The research has had important implications for peacekeeping. Peace has, traditionally, been
sought through two different approaches, sometimes working against each other: firstly, through
diplomacy backed by military power and, secondly, through citizen peacemaking efforts (i.e. the
top-down, bottom-up debate). Men have dominated the first approach, while women have been
central to the second. Peacekeeping is unique in that most participants are (male) military personnel,
yet they are not deployed for fighting purposes and many of their activities – particularly in
contemporary peacekeeping – are similar to those practised by peace action groups (e.g.,
humanitarian relief, election monitoring, human rights verification). It would follow then
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 195
2
This argument and the statistical data has been developed by J. Stiehm (1995), “Men and Women and
Peacekeeping”, International Peacekeeping, 2(4): 564-9.
3
Study by, L. Miller and C. Moskos (1995), “Humanitarians or Warriors?: Race, Gender and Combat Status in
Operation Restore Hope”, Armed Forces & Society, 21 (4): 615-37.
that women (and civilians) are essential participants in this expanded version of peacekeeping.
2
Yet,
statistical data indicates that the role of peacekeeping has continued to be predominantly male
(reflecting the traditionally male composition of national armed forces), despite the diverse
activities of peacekeeping. Of the 17 missions active in 1993, women comprised only 1.7% of
military personnel and less than 1% of police. (This is an improvement, however; during the period
1957-1989, only 0.1% of the military peacekeepers were women.) Peacekeeping missions are,
therefore, gendered in that men and women play different roles and are assigned different tasks:
men predominantly play the military and police roles, women the civilian roles.
There has been a move towards balancing the gender factor in peacekeeping operations by
increasing female participation in the field. The UN project on “Mainstreaming a Gender
Perspective in UN Multidimensional Peacekeeping Operations” is one attempt. The project is
concerned with: (1) whether women are present in contemporary peacekeeping and if gender issues
are considered; and (2) whether there are advantages and disadvantages with increased female
participation.
There are several reasons for encouraging a higher proportion of women to serve in
peacekeeping forces. It will bring new issues to the agenda and may mobilise new constituencies
towards conflict resolution action. It may help local women in a host country to feel more
comfortable, particularly during activities like weapons searches at checkpoints, or reporting of
sexual violence incidences. It may place emphasis on those attributes associated with women, such
as non-confrontational approaches in delicate situations, ability to listen and console, and
willingness to understand and reconcile. For example, a study on US forces in Somalia concluded
that men adopted a “warrior” attitude and used more force in their interactions with local
communities. Women adopted more humanitarian strategies and developed positive relations with
the local communities (e.g., they were more active in volunteer work in schools, refugee camps, and
food distribution centres and they were more sensitive towards local Somalis).
3
In light of cases
involving male soldiers patronizing prostitution and committing sexual violence against civilians,
studies have revealed that in mixed gender units male soldiers are more likely to control their sexual
urges. In short, more women may lead to increased legitimacy of a mission, which may further
facilitate conflict resolution activities.
4. Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice
Gender critiques of conflict resolution theory and practice have sought to move beyond the
limited application of “styles” and “sex difference” and their relation to the effectiveness of conflict
management. The critiques are concerned with the male-constructed, generic theories of conflict
and conflict resolution which have excluded or downplayed such issues as power imbalances,
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 196
oppression, social roles and the militarisation of international conflict intervention. Conflict
resolution theories are largely “gender-neutral”, failing to consider the specific effects of conflict on
“women” and “men” and the gendered consequences of conflict intervention. This has serious
repercussions on peace negotiations. Most of the externally brokered peace settlements take the
form of “gendered deals”, i.e., explicitly differential rights given to men and women in the newly
established political and economic institutions.
One theoretical push has come from encounters between feminist theory and conflict/peace
research. Feminist theory is critical of the assumption that the very inclusion of women will
eliminate gender inequalities; it is also suspicious of the equation of women with such
characteristics as compassion, empathy and co-operation – the assumption of “woman as the
peaceful sex”. Rather the discipline is concerned with re-defining concepts of violence, war,
security, and peace from feminist perspectives and challenging international conflict management
(involving mostly men) which reinforces the exclusionist power structures.
Several international agencies, including the UN, have sought to mainstream gender into
post-conflict rehabilitation, development and Peace Building. Gender mainstreaming is a strategy to
promote gender equality by (1) including a gender analysis in all policies, projects and programmes;
and (2) consulting women and men equally and integrating their needs and concerns in all decision-
making processes. Non-government organisations have also begun to stress the gender dimension of
conflict, and the implications for their own Peace Building work.
5. A Gender Analysis of Conflict
A gender analysis provides a framework for understanding the different needs, interests,
experiences, coping strategies and relations of men and women through the various stages of
conflict and conflict intervention. It is an integral part in any design, implementation, monitoring
and evaluation of conflict intervention policies and activities. Peacekeeping actors can achieve
greater operational effectiveness, provide better assistance to the local communities, and choose
more appropriate conflict resolution strategies if they develop the capacity to analyse and approach
situations and problems from a gender perspective.
The impact of conflict on gender relations can be analysed at the different stages of
conflict (pre-conflict, during conflict, and post-conflict), on different levels of relations (personal,
community, national, international), and along a number of inter-related dimensions (including,
but not limited to, political, economic, social, human rights, psychological/physical,
demographic). The different stages and levels of conflict are not distinctive; they are overlapping
and inter-related. Also, each conflict is unique and a gender analysis must consider other factors,
including nation-state, ethnicity, culture, and religion. The framework below is a brief overview of
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 197
4
The authors wish to thank Cordula Reimann (Centre for Conflict Resolution, Department of Peace Studies,
University of Bradford) for her knowledge of gender issues in Conflict Resolution. The conflict and gender
analysis framework has been adapted from her work in progress for the German Development Co-operation
Agency GTZ (December 1999) on “Gender Mainstreaming in Crisis Prevention and Conflict Management”. The
section has also been informed by the ideas in J. El-Buschra (2000), “Transforming Conflict: Some Thoughts on
a Gendered Understanding of Conflict Processes”, in S. Jacobs, R. Jacobson, and J. Marchbank (eds.), States of
Conflict: Gender, Violence and Resistance, London: Zed Books, pp.66-86; and the “Gender Analysis Series” session
of the Lester B. Pearson Peacekeeping Centre’s prototype course on Gender & Peace Support Operations (February
2000).
such an analysis; it is not exhaustive and only considers some of the common issues which can help
us to better understand the gender dimensions of conflict and conflict intervention.
4
5.1 Gender Issues in the Pre-Conflict Stage
It is important to understand the gender issues in the pre-conflict stage in order to (1) initiate
effective crisis prevention activities and early warning systems and (2) to develop and implement
gender-appropriate policies and programmes in later stages of conflict intervention.
TABLE 10-1: : Influence of Gender Issues at the Pre-Conflict Stage
LEVEL OF
ANALYSIS
PRE-CONFLICT FEATURE POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT
Personal Increased physical/domestic violence Women and children may be the
victims of domestic violence
Community Increased human rights violations
Mobilisation of peace organisations
Gender-specific violence may
increase
Differential impact of human rights
violations on men/women
Women become active in women-
only and informal peace
organisations, men become
active in more formal decision-
making bodies
National Increased human rights violations
National propaganda used to increase
support for military action
Increased mobilisation of soldiers
Human rights may not be considered
as women’s rights
Reinforcement of stereotypes of
masculinity/femininity (e.g., to
be a man is to fight for the
cause)
Increased commercial sex trade
International UN fact-finding missions/ preventive
deployment PKOs
Lack of knowledge and awareness of
gender-related issues among
international personnel
Increased commercial sex trade
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 198
Several questions may be asked to determine the gender issues in the pre-conflict stage.
Answers may provide outside actors with early warning signals and will allow individuals and
organisations to pursue appropriate conflict prevention strategies.
What human rights violations have been committed? Who has the violence been directed at?
How have the victims been affected by it? In what ways are the violations gender-specific?
What is the state or the international community doing to protect gender-specific human
rights abuses?
What are the respective roles of women and men in peace organisations, both formally and
informally? What strategies are men and women using to prevent conflict in the households,
communities, and at the state-level?
What are the activities of external actors (e.g., UN agencies, NGOs)? Are their activities
gender-neutral?
5.2 Gender Issues During Conflict
Across the various levels and dimensions, armed conflict impacts upon women (girls) and
men (boys) differently. Gender roles and relations are often changed during conflict. This may
include extended opportunities for women in conflict situations, which may balance power, but it
may also increase gender-specific violations of human rights. Just as women and men experience
conflict in different ways, peacekeeping activities can have differential impacts on women and men.
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 199
TABLE 10-2: Influence of Gender Issues During Conflict
LEVEL OF
ANALYSIS
CONFLICT FEATURE POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT
Personal Use of physical/sexual
violence as a weapon of
war
Psychological and physical
trauma from witnessing
and participating in
violence, and
experiencing direct
violence
Men/boys experience mutilation and slaughter;
women/girls experience rape and forced
impregnation
Rape used against women to prove masculinity,
destroy culture, and bear children of opposing
group; rape used against men to destroy
masculinity
Men and women suffer from stress, but it may
affect them differently
While men are fighting, women must assume the
responsibility for the survival of their families;
they suffer from increased overload and
anxiety
Men may be injured/handicapped from fighting,
experience feelings of helplessness, loss of
“masculinity” because of sexual mutilation
Women/girls are more likely to experience sexual
and reproductive health stresses, including
children conceived in rape and sexually
transmitted diseases
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 200
Community Changes in family and social
structures
Material Shortages
“Cultures of violence”
Resisting the conflict
Women may be empowered, given access to
markets previously excluded from
Women’s production and social reproduction roles
extended; in the absence of men, women
assume traditional male roles and
responsibilities
Intra-household power structures may change as
women become primary decision-makers and
carers of survivors and dependants
Breakdown of rigid family structures may create
different forms of self-help groups (separate
women’s and men’s groups)
Quality of marital relationships may change, forced
marriage increases, injured or raped girls may
no longer be marriageable
Due to changes in the gendered division of labour,
gender relations are put under pressure
(including increased domestic violence,
migration of men to cities for work, increased
petty crime amongst men)
With male contributions absent, women are
increasingly burdened as providers
Due to material shortages, women’s basic health
needs are marginalised (e.g., male soldiers
receive medical attention, women suffer from
malnutrition because they eat less food to
ensure dependants get enough)
Most combatants are men, but women may incite or
support men to use violence, protest or actively
participate in violence as fighters
Female fighters are often socially excluded
(including reduced economic opportunities and
marriage prospects)
Boys become combatants, girls become couriers,
cooks, or sexual providers
Men targeted (beaten, tortured or killed) as revenge
attacks (their blood is worth more) or because
they are of fighting age; women are beaten and
sexually abused to decrease morale
Increased domestic violence on women and
children
Children (especially boys) are encouraged to flee;
boys are dressed as girls
Men refuse to fight
Women refuse to help combatants and use roles as
mothers to protest
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 201
National Increase in refugees and
displaced people
Media in support of or
against military action
Formal and informal peace
processes
Different basic material and non-material needs for
male and female refugees
Women are vulnerable to economic, political and
sexual exploitation (e.g., sexual favours in
exchange for safe passage, food)
Use of gender images in political mobilisation (
e.g., images of womanhood and motherhood
used to mobilise for peace)
Women involved in local informal peace
organisations but excluded from formal peace
processes; men involved in formal decision-
making processes at local and national levels
International Humanitarian intervention,
peacekeeping, peace
enforcement operations
Internationally brokered
peace settlements
Increased flow of refugees
into neighbouring states
General lack of understanding of gender-related
issues amongst international actors
Delivery of aid influences gender relations
Human rights abuses against men and women
committed by international personnel; increase
in prostitution
Gendered deals, different rights given to men and
women in political/economic institutions
Women excluded from international peace
processes
Different needs and health concerns for male and
female refugees
Several questions should be asked to determine the gender issues during the conflict. Careful
consideration of these questions may better inform the intervention activities by the international
community at the macro-level and peacekeeping actors at the micro-level (on the ground).

How is the conflict affecting men/boys and women/girls? What roles are they playing in the
conflict?
What gender-specific violations are being targeted at the men/boys and women/girls? What are
the results of these violations? How are men/boys and women/girls responding to these
violations?
How are the gender roles and relations changing? How have men’s and women’s
responsibilities changed?
What are the needs of the men and women in the conflict situation?
What strategies to resist or resolve the conflict are being employed by the men and women at the
local, national and international?
Does the external intervention strategy affect men and women differently? If so, how? What can
be done to prevent or correct women’s disadvantage?
5.3 Gender Issues in the Post-Conflict Stage
Many of the gender issues during the immediate post-conflict stage are similar to those
found during the conflict. Gender relations is a crucial issue, as women have taken on new roles
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 202
and responsibilities during the conflict. Peace is difficult to sustain if the underlying causes of
conflict are not addressed. This includes the social, political, and economic marginalisation of
women. Reconciliation and reconstruction therefore require that gender equality be addressed,
including creating wider processes of representation in peace processes and developing more
inclusive forms of civil society.
TABLE 10-3: Influence of Gender Issues in the Post-Conflict Stage
LEVEL OF
ANALYSIS
POST-CONFLICT FEATURE POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT
Personal Psychological trauma as a result of
experiencing sexual violence,
serious injuries and death
Post-settlement violence may
increase
Men and women have different
sexual and reproductive health
needs
Women may give birth to children
conceived during rape
Domestic violence directed at
women/girls may increase
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 203
Community Changes in family and social
structures
Demobilisation of combatants
Local Peace Building activities
Previous social gendered division of
labour may be put back in place,
despite women taking on many
new roles during conflict
Returning from war, men may have
difficulties in re-entering the
changed family and community
structures
Demographic imbalance: more
female-headed households may
limit women’s marriage
prospects; polygamy is seen as a
means of dealing with the high
numbers of widowed and
younger women
Demographic imbalance increases
women’s workload; women may
have primary responsibility of
producing food
Informal women’s groups may
(re)emerge to provide physical
and emotional support
Reintegration policies (land
allocations, credit schemes)
aimed at male ex-combatants
Men ex-fighters may develop
drug/alcohol addictions, face
discrimination in jobs, direct
violence against wives and
children
Women ex-fighters may be socially
excluded (reduced economic and
marriage prospects), lose respect
in community because they
violated social and gender roles,
their experiences are
marginalised
Female ex-fighters may have to raise
children without male support
(due to death, divorce, migration
Many traditional mechanisms for
conflict resolution only involve
male members of the community
Voices from women’s peace groups
are usually ignored; women’s
needs may
marginalised/undermined
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 204
National Implementation of peace negotiations
Promotion of national reconciliation
Holding of national elections
Re-formation of security forces
Women are excluded from formal
decision-making processes
Women’s experiences are excluded
or inadequately addressed (e.g.,
as victims of sexual violence
they are afraid to testify)
Due to exclusion from political
institutions in the pre-conflict
stage, women may experience
difficulties in participating in
elections
Gender issues rarely appear as
election issues, nor are they a
priority for the newly elected
government
General lack of understanding of
gender-specific violence
Limited or no access for women
International Investigations by International War
Crimes Tribunal
International investment and
reconstruction programmes
Repatriation of refugees
Gender-specific nature of war crimes
has been recognised
Programmes may not differentiate
between women’s and men’s
health needs, skills and training
needs, or credit schemes
Different needs for men and women
overlooked
In determining appropriate post-conflict Peace Building activities and programmes, the
following questions should be asked:
What are the physical, psychological and social needs and concerns of men and women in the
post-conflict stage?
Are women continuing to participate in social, economic and political institutions in the post-
conflict environment? If not, why? How can they be assisted?
Are women actively involved in conflict resolution activities? Are men being excluded from
women’s projects? What strategies can be employed to ensure equal participation?
How can post-conflict reconstruction and Peace Building activities ensure that the gender-
specific needs are met?
6. The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace Building
Although conflict affects the entire society, women frequently bear the brunt of conflict and
are, therefore, the main victims (along with children). Yet, women are rarely involved in the
decisions that result in conflict and they are almost never involved in issues and processes relating
to peace and security. Despite women’s participation in local peace movements and community
groups, the top-down political process imposed at the international level often ignores, even
discourages, their contributions and concerns.
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 205
There are numerous examples from recent peacekeeping experiences in areas of conflict that clearly
illustrate this dynamic.
Despite the many local organisations representing women in Bosnia, there were no women
involved in the Dayton peace negotiations in November 1995. Yet, women’s groups in the
Former Yugoslavia were desperate to address the problems raised for women of all ethnic
groups from the early days of the conflict. The local women’s commitment to creating social
cohesion was strong: they established counselling services, centres for the distribution of
humanitarian aid, meeting places for women, and organised peaceful protests. However, they
lacked support from the international community and there was very little external funding, so
the extent to which they could nurture peace was limited.
Although the international community’s intervention policies did not consult women in the
Western Sahara during MINURSO – nor were they included in peace talks between
POLISARIO and the Moroccan Government – they have been active at the community level.
Women have had the primary responsibility of building the refugee camps, seeing to health,
education, water and sanitation issues, and promoting peace and reconciliation within the
camps.
In Somalia women were excluded from UN peace conferences, which gave more legitimacy and
power to the Somali warlords who were not accountable to the local communities. Traditionally,
however, Somali women have played an important role as peacemaker through inter-clan
marriage; because of their dual kinship, they are employed as go-betweens or intermediaries
between opposing clans to make contact and open discussion. They also have traditional
networks that support each other and each other’s families (across clan boundaries), particularly
during times of conflict. Locally-based clan reconciliation conferences (unsupported by the
international community), have recognised the resources of Somali women’s groups and
employed women as “bridge-builders” to initiate and nurture lasting peace. In Somaliland, they
have been give the title of “clan ambassadors” and they had a separate women’s delegation in
the national Boroma conference.
In 1999, there was only one Kosovar woman at the Rambouillet negotiations. Yet, women have
been involved in peace activities long before the war broke out; they were visible throughout the
long period of instability that began in 1989 when Serbia revoked the autonomy in Kosovo.
Women’s groups were established to improve the literacy of women and girls, to defend
human rights and freedoms, to provide legal aid and psycho-social assistance, and to offer a
variety of training (including, sewing, hairdressing, building small enterprises). More recently,
the international community has begun to recognise the important role that women’s
organisations play in building peace. Various UN agencies and international NGOs (e.g.,
Oxfam, the German NGO Kinderberg) have been committed to supporting the existing
organisations, as well as empowering women and encouraging them to initiate their

Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 206
5
Adapted from Training of Trainers on Gender and Conflict Transformation: Capacity-Building for
Women’s Peace Movements in Burundi (Workshop Proceedings), Gitega, Burundi, April 1997.
Organised and facilitated by International Alert, Search for Common Ground, and UNIFEM/AWIC.
own projects to heal the wounds of war. Two problems have been identified, however. Firstly,
some international NGOs have been insensitive to existing women’s organisations and have
established their own centres nearby, offering the same activities and under the direction of
international staff. This has caused problems for local women as they find themselves torn
between the centres. Secondly, while the Kosovo Women’s Initiative (KWI) is a generous $10
million US-sponsored initiative to allocate to women’s groups, some feel that the initiative is
simply throwing money at Kosovo’s women with little regard for the consequences. Many
organisations have been formed with no other purpose than to apply for KWI money that must
be spent by September 2000, leaving many groups dependent and lacking in the necessary skills
to run an NGO efficiently.
Capacity-Building for Women
5
Local women do not usually occupy positions that would enable them to fully participate in peace
processes. It is therefore crucial for third parties to evaluate the extent of their position in decision-
making bodies and to formulate strategies aimed at promoting the increased participation of women in
Peace Building. Appropriate Peace Building programmes can be developed by exploring the questions
below.
What are the decision-making bodies in the conflict culture?
What is the number or percentage of women in these decision-making bodies?
What positions may women occupy in these decision-making bodies?
If gender-based discrimination exists within these decision-making bodies, what are the reasons for
it? Are their cultural norms that discourage or prevent women from participating?
What strategies can be developed to promote the equal participation of men and women in these
decision-making bodies in the short, medium and long terms?
When traditional forms of conflict resolution by women are supported how can these informal
efforts be included in formal peace processes?
For women in countries affected by war, support from the UN and international agencies is
critical. Local women need to be consulted to learn about the root causes of the conflict and how
they are affected by the conflict, how the obstacles to peace negotiations can be removed, and how
traditional practices can offer a perspective on developing alternative ways of ending the conflict.
Gendered post-conflict peace deals can be avoided by:
Increasing participation of women in local, national and international pre- and post-conflict
decision-making processes and Peace Building/reconciliation activities;
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 207
Sensitively supporting existing women’s groups and peace organisations (e.g., include local
women in discussions, decision-making and programme implementation);
Supporting men where they engage in Peace Building-from-below activities;
Linking grassroots peace initiatives led by women into the official peace negotiations led mainly
by men.
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 208
Further Reading
Key Reading: Miall, Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999), Contemporary Conflict Resolution. (“A
Gendered Critique of Conflict Resolution”, pp. 60-1)
Lamptey, Comfort and Gretchen Sidhu (2000) (eds.), Women at the Peace Table: Making a
Difference. New York: UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). (Read the book on-line at:
www.unifem.undp.org/peacebook.html.)
On the Record: Your Electronic Link to Civil Society in Kosovo, “Gender Bias: Women and Peace
Building”, Volume 10, Issue 4, 9 April 2000. (Available on-line at: www.advocacynet.org/cgi-
bin/browse.pl?id=otrkosovo.)
Pankhurst, D. and J. Pearce (1998), “Engendering the Analysis of Conflict: A Southern
Perspective”, in H. Afshar (ed.), Women and Empowerment, London: Routledge, pp. 155-163.
Rodgers, J. (1998), “Bosnia, Gender and the Ethics of Intervention in Civil Wars”, Civil Wars, 1
(1): 103-116.
Stamato, L. (1992), “Voice, Place, and Process: Research on Gender, Negotiation, and Conflict
Resolution”, Mediation Quarterly, 9 (4): 375-86.
Stiehm, J. (1997), “Peacekeeping and Peace Research: Men’s and Women’s Work”, Women and
Politics, 18 (1): 27-51.
Reimann, Cordula (1999), The Field of Conflict Management: Why Does Gender Matter?. Bonn:
AFB-TEXTE, Information Unit Peace Research.
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 209
LESSON 10
END-OF-LESSON QUIZ
1. Gender refers to:
a. women’s issues in social situations
b. socially and culturally constructed roles of women and men
c. the biological distinctions between men and women
d. universal responsibilities accorded to women and men
2. Which of the following variables influences gender differences in conflict management styles?
a. power
b. gender of the other party
c. context
d. all of the above
e. none of the above
3. During the period 1957-1989, what percentage of women participated in military peacekeeping
operations?
a. 25%
b. 10%
c. 1%
d. 0.1%
4. The project on “Mainstreaming a Gender Perspective in Multidimensional Peacekeeping
Operations” is one attempt to balance the gender factor in peacekeeping. Who is conducting this
project?
a. UN
b. OSCE
c. NATO
d. National troop-contributing countries
5. Give two reasons for increasing the participation of women in contemporary peacekeeping
operations.
6. Gender mainstreaming aims to (choose two):
a. include a gender analysis in all policies and programmes
b. involve an equal number of men and women in conflict resolution activities
c. consult women and men equally to integrate their needs
d. ensure that women are involved as third parties
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 210
7. An example of the potential gender impact of increased violence during the pre-conflict phase is:
a. women are recruited to fight
b. boys are encouraged to flee the area
c. women may be the victims of domestic violence
d. men are taken from the villages
8. During conflict, changes in family and social structures affect the community. The potential gender
impact of this is:
a. women take on new roles and become the primary decision-makers
b. men no longer have a role in the community
c. gender relations improve because of the changes
d. violence in the community decreases
9. In the post-conflict phase, Peace Building activities should address the specific needs and concerns
of men and women. Which of the following may be an issue for men ex-fighters?
a. they may have difficult re-entering the changed community structures
b. they may have developed drug and alcohol addictions
c. they may face discrimination in jobs
d. all of the above
10. List two ways in which gendered post-conflict peace deals can be avoided.
Answer Key: 1-b; 2-d; 3-d; 4-a; 5- to bring new issues to the agenda, to mobilise new
constituencies, to make host women feel more comfortable, to place emphasis on non-
confrontational approaches to conflict, to decrease incidences of prostitution and sexual violence
by male soldiers, to increase legitimacy of mission; 6-a, c; 7-c; 8-a; 9-d; 10-increase participation
of women, support existing women’s groups, link grassroots activities with official negotiations,
support men in Peace Building-from-below activities
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 211
Exercise 1: Gender Issues in Personal Conflict Experiences
Aims:
To begin exploring how gender influences conflict situations;
To allow students to consider how his/her gender identity affects his/her personal conflict and
conflict management styles.
Method: Think of a conflict situation that you have been involved in (as a conflict party or as a
third party) where gender issue(s) were present. Briefly summarise the experience on a sheet of
paper.
Consideration/Discussion:
What were the gender issue(s)?
In what ways did the gender issue(s) influence the conflict situation?
Was your interpretation of the conflict situation affected by your gender identity? If yes, how?
To what extent would you say your gender influences your expression of conflict? Your
conflict management styles? Your role as a third party?
How does your society/culture expect men and women to behave in conflict situation?
What role do men and women play in resolving conflict in your society/culture?
Does gender affect the legitimacy and acceptability of the third party in your society (i.e., are
their cultural rules regulating who may act as a third party)?
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 212
Exercise 2: Gender Scenarios
Aims:
To explore the gender dimensions of conflict and conflict intervention;
To engage with problem-solving activities in gender contexts.
Method: Read each of the following scenarios and consider/discuss the questions given at the
bottom of each case.
UNMIK Meets the Community: A Cultural Dialogue
You are attached to a civil affairs team tasked with fact-finding in a Kosovo village with a
population of just over 800 people. Your team visits the village to meet a group of local community
members. The purpose of the meeting is to decide on a suitable venue for establishing a small
office/information point to explain UNMIK policy and procedures related to civil registration and,
eventually, the compilation of an electoral register. Some of you are aware that this is not just a
technical process and that, if you notice any willingness for cross-ethnic dialogue, you might
support it. You are met by a group of two elderly Albanian men and a younger Albanian woman.
The men are insistent that the building that has been the school would be the best place for the
information point. The woman says little, but occasionally and tentatively suggests that there may
be better venues. She suggests, for example, a building near the marketplace.
What preparation should you have done before the meeting?
What are the possible gender issues in this situation?
How would you continue to conduct the discussion?
What would you want to find out?
How would you react if the woman behaved deferentially towards the elders?
How would you deal with the situation if the elders ignored the female members of your group?
What would you do to encourage and support the Kosovar woman’s full participate in the
discussion?
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 213
6
MICHAEL ROSE: Extract from Fighting for Peace. First published in Great Britain in 1998 by the Harvill
Press. Copyright © The Rose Partnership, 1998. Reproduced by permission of the Harvill Press.
The “Infamous” Hadzici Women
6
(Based on General Sir Michael Rose’s experiences during his command of the UN Protection Force
in Bosnia in 1994.)
Taking a southern route on the way back to Sarajevo, we drove through the Serb town of
Hadzici where a group of women had for many months been blocking the road. They were
campaigning for the return of 120 of their menfolk who had been taken away early in the war by
Muslim forces and were being held in appalling conditions in a grain silo not far distant in Tarcin.
The Bosnian Government had taken them hostage in exchange for the return of missing Muslims
captured or killed by the Serbs at the beginning of the war. Karadzic had always denied knowing
their whereabouts, saying that neither side at the start of the war had kept records and that it was
probable that these men had been killed in action. On the Bosnian side, it was believed that the
missing men were being used as forced labour. Even the International Committee of the Red Cross
had failed to trace them.
The women of Hadzici were a militant lot and would allow nobody through their roadblock.
They had once held General Briquemont hostage for an entire day. Because we arrived late in the
day, when it was sleeting and a bitter wind was blowing up the valley, we managed to pass through
the block before the women had time to rush out of their hut and stop us. I halted the vehicles 100
yards past their position and Simon, Nick, Goose and I walked slowly back to where the women
were standing in the road shouting at us. Through Nick, I introduced myself and asked them if they
were the famous women of Hadzici. They seemed rather pleased by this and replied, “No, we are
the infamous women of Hadzici,” before proceeding to recount the sad story of their missing
husbands and sons. I said that I would do everything I could to raise the matter again with the
Bosnian Government and also with the media, as their story was little known. They looked
desperately cold and undernourished, so I told them I would send them some soup and bread. When
Nick and Goose turned up several hours later with a container full of soup, they burst into tears. As
a result we never had trouble passing through Hadzici, though later on they held up a French
military convoy for five weeks. Sadly, we were never able to get the men released, although the Red
Cross did manage to visit them on one occasion.
What are the men’s issues likely to be in this conflict scenario?
What are the women’s issues?
Describe the women’s approach to the conflict. How does this differ from sterotypical notions
of women as “peaceful”?
What conflict resolution strategies did General Rose adopt in dealing with these women? Were
they useful? Why or why not?
What would you have done if you encountered a similar situation in your peacekeeping
activities?
How might the men’s and women’s needs and concerns be addressed in the post-conflict phase?
Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 214
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End-of-Course Examination 215
The End-of-Course Examination is provided as
a separate component of this course.
The examination questions cover the material in
all the lessons of this UNITAR course.
Read each question carefully
and
Follow the provided instructions to submit your exam for scoring.
End-of-Course
Examination
End-of-Course Examination 216
INSTRUCTIONS FOR FILLING OUT THE ANSWER SHEET
The End-of-Course Examination Answer Sheet is designed to:
1. Formally record your answers to the questions of the Final Examination; and
2. Provide instructions for answer submission.
Format of Questions
There are 50 questions. The answer sheet has numbered blocks, and each block corresponds to
a similarly numbered question on the End-of-Course Examination. First, read a question through
carefully. Then, mark your answer on the answer sheet with the number corresponding to the number
of each question. Throughout the examination, check that the question number and answer sheet number
is the same.
Exam questions generally give you a choice of answers, marked as A, B, C, or D. They may be
true or false questions that give you two choices, A or B. Choose only one response and mark only one
choice on your answer sheet. If you mark more than one answer for a question, it will be graded as
incorrect.
Use a Dark Pencil
Mark your response on the Answer Sheet using a dark lead pencil.
Time Limit to Complete the End-of-Course Examination
Because your enrolment in the course is valid for one year only, the examination must be
submitted before your enrolment expires.
Passing Grade
A score of 75% is the minimum score required for a passing grade. If you pass, you will receive
a letter indicating your score along with your signed Certificate-of-Completion. If your score is less than
75%, you will be sent a letter indicating that you have received a failing grade. At that time, you will
be provided with an alternate version of the End-of-Course Examination, which you may complete when
you feel you are ready. If you pass the second version of the examination, a grade report and a
Certificate-of-Completion will be awarded to you. If you fail the second time, you will be informed and
dis-enrolled from the course.
AFTER COMPLETING THE EXAMINATION,
PLEASE IMMEDIATELY SUBMIT YOUR ANSWER SHEET.
About the Authors
Professor Tom Woodhouse holds the Adam Curle Chair in Conflict Resolution at the University of
Bradford, UK. He founded the Centre for Conflict Resolution at the University of Bradford in 1990
and is currently its Director. The Centre is part of the Department of Peace Studies, which was
formed in 1974 and is amongst the largest peace research centres in the world. The Centre has an
extensive teaching program with BA and MA degrees in Conflict Resolution. It also conducts a
wide-ranging doctoral research programme, and has a training and outreach project that offers
workshops and training in conflict resolution skills and processes. It also publishes its research
reports in the series Working Papers in Conflict Resolution. Tom Woodhouse is on the editorial
board of the journal International Peacekeeping. He has published widely on conflict resolution and
peacekeeping issues, including the following: Peacemaking in a Troubled World (Berg Publishers,
Oxford, 1991); Humanitarian Intervention in Contemporary Conflict: A Reconceptualisation (Polity
Press, Oxford, 1996, with Oliver Ramsbotham); United Nations Peacekeeping and Peacemaking:
Towards Effective Intervention in Contemporary Conflict (Macmillan, Basingstoke, 1997; Conflict
Resolution in Contemporary Conflict (Polity Press, Oxford, 1999, with H. Miall and O.
Ramsbotham); Encyclopaedia of International Peacekeeping Operations, ABC/CLIO, Santa
Barbara/Denver/Oxford, 1999, with O. Ramsbotham); Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution (Frank
Cass, London, 2000, with O. Ramsbotham); “UNPROFOR: Some Observations from a Conflict
Resolution Perspective” (in International Peacekeeping, Vol. 1, No. 2, 1994, with Fetherston and
Ramsbotham); “Negotiating a New Millennium: Prospects for African Conflict Resolution” (in
Review of African Political Economy, No. 68, 1996); “‘Terra Incognita: Here Be Dragons’:
Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in Contemporary Conflict” (University of Ulster/INCORE,
United Nations University, June 1997, with Oliver Ramsbotham).
Dr. Tamara Duffey is Research Fellow in the Centre for Conflict Resolution, Department of Peace
Studies, University of Bradford, UK. Along with teaching on the BA and MA degrees in Conflict
Resolution, she has been involved in the development and facilitation of conflict resolution and
cultural awareness training at the local, national, and international levels. Recently, she has been
involved in training UNMIK staff in Kosovo (with Tom Woodhouse, and in partnership with the
International Training Programme for Conflict Management at the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna,
Pisa, Italy); and training national and international OSCE staff in Kosovo. She has also worked
variously with the Irish and British Armies on culture and conflict resolution training issues. Her
publications include: “Cultural Issues in Contemporary Peacekeeping” (in Woodhouse and
Ramsbotham, Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution, Frank Cass, London; also published in
International Peacekeeping, Vol.7, No.1, 2000); Entries in Ramsbotham and Woodhouse,
Encyclopaedia of International Peacekeeping, ABC Clio, 1999 (including “Culture and
Peacekeeping”, “Haiti”, “Somalia”, “Training for Peacekeeping”, “Women and Peacekeeping”);
“United Nations Peacekeeping in the Post-Cold War World” (in Civil Wars, Vol.1, No.3, 1998);
“Sharing the Burden of Peacekeeping: The UN and Regional Organisations” (in Peacekeeping and
International Relations, The Pearson Peacekeeping Centre, Vol.25, No.3, 1996, with Richard Jones).
She is currently working on a book, Culture, Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping.
060401

Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution
(PICR 060401)

A course produced by The United Nations Institute for Training and Research, Programme of Correspondence Instruction in Peacekeeping Operations

Course Authors: Professor Tom Woodhouse and Dr. Tamara Duffey, Bradford University, UK Series Editor: Harvey J. Langholtz

© COPYRIGHT 2000 UNITAR POCI

Address all correspondence to: UNITAR POCI Dag Hammarskjöld Centre Box 20475 New York, NY 10017-0009 USA

iii

UNITED NATIONS INSTITUTE FOR TRAINING AND RESEARCH (UNITAR) PROGRAMME OF CORRESPONDENCE INSTRUCTION IN PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS BOX 20475 DAG HAMMARSKJÖLD CENTRE NEW YORK, NY 10017-0009

INSTITUT DES NATIONS UNIES POUR LA FORMATION ET LA RECHERCHE (UNITAR) PROGRAMME UNITAR DE FORMATION PAR CORRESPONDANCE AUX OPERATIONS DE MAINTIEN DE LA PAIX PALAIS DES NATIONS 1211 GENEVE 10 SUISSE

Dear Student: I am pleased you have enrolled in the correspondence course Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution. The course authors, Professor Tom Woodhouse and Dr. Tamara Duffey, have written this course to provide the student with a fundamental understanding of the field of Conflict Resolution in both theory and application. Some may assert that this course both claims to do the impossible and also claims that the impossible is possible. Is it possible for a self-paced correspondence course to train the student in international conflict resolution? Is it possible for individual peacekeepers to conduct international conflict resolution? This course, through 10 well-structured lessons, will acquaint the student with the most important topics of conflict resolution. Each lesson contains lesson objectives, reading material, lists of approaches and points to consider, a self-administering quiz, suggested outside readings, and an exercise for students to apply what they have learned in the lesson. In addition, students are encouraged to participate in UNITAR POCI’s on-line chat room through our home page at www.unitarpoci.org. Here students from around the world may share views and discuss this course and other peacekeeping-related issues, just as they would in a resident educational setting. Can individual peacekeepers, civilian police, diplomats, NGO employees, and humanitarian aid workers of all sorts actually resolve international conflict? Can actions on the ground – even small ones – lead to international conflict resolution? Of course the answer is yes. The end of the 20th Century and the opening of the 21st have seen a long list of conflicts that have turned violent – The Middle East, Rwanda, East Timor, Yugoslavia, Somalia, Cambodia, Mozambique, Central America, Haiti, Sierra Leone. No region is immune. Additional conflicts may go unresolved even within the borders of the nations we think of as being at peace. And yet every day peacekeepers of many forms do what is possible at the local level to resolve disputes peacefully, contain the scope and level of violence, and seek resolution of deeply rooted conflicts. By completing this course the student will gain a better understanding of the nature of conflict, the role of culture in conflict, concepts of conflict resolution, early warning, peace settlements, and post-conflict peace building. I wish you every success in your study of the material in this course and in your endeavors following the completion of the course. Sincerely,

Harvey J. Langholtz, Ph.D., Director, UNITAR POCI
iv

FORMAT OF STUDY This course is designed for independent study. v . Course format and materials permit: MODULAR STUDY EASE OF REVIEW INCREMENTAL LEARNING Materials needed for the completion of this course are enclosed with the course and listed below : Course booklet: Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution (End-of-Course Examination included) Answer Sheet for End-of-Course Examination Return Envelope for End-of-Course Examination Student Feedback Sheet STUDENT S RESPONSIBILITIES The student is responsible for : Learning course material Completing the End-of-Course Examination Submitting the End-of-Course Examination Please see the End-of-Course Examination Answer Sheet for submission instructions. at a pace determined by the student.

while the material is fresh in your mind.METHOD OF STUDY The following are suggestions for how to proceed with a UNITAR-POCI Course. At the beginning of each lesson. be aware of the discrepancy that led to the error. vi . take time to review the main points of each lesson. Think of the main points. you will be awarded a Certificate-of-Completion. For any error. go back to the lesson section and re-read it. Though the student may have alternate approaches that are effective. Before you go on. and if you achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher. orient yourself to the main points by reviewing the lesson objectives. Your exam will be scored. If you score below 75%. Then. Notice the lesson outlines which give you an idea of what will be involved as you proceed. take the End-of-Course Examination in one sitting. After you complete all lessons. Set up guidelines regarding how you want to schedule your time. you will be given one opportunity to take a second version of the End-of-Course Examination. first browse through the overall course material. Study the lesson content. strive to understand concepts and overall perspectives in regard to peacekeeping operations. take the End-of-Lesson Quiz. the following hints have worked for many. When you finish a lesson. Skim through the lesson before reading it in its entirety. Instead of memorizing individual details. The material should be logical and straightforward. Before you begin actual studies.

FOREWORD: A COURSE ON PEACEKEEPING AND INTERNATIONAL CONFLICT RESOLUTION Peacekeeping has become the prominent intervention strategy for managing and resolving post-Cold War conflicts in the global community. As well. The course explores the significant areas that will improve responses to today’s complex emergencies. along with the key concepts and techniques for resolving conflict. interpersonal. They have become functionally more diverse (including conflict prevention. intergroup. The course explores the emergence and development of the academic discipline of Conflict Resolution and its relation to the evolution of peacekeeping. including conflict analysis and mapping. interagency co-ordination. The new demands being made on peacekeeping and the multifaceted character of contemporary operations call for greater attention to be paid to the training and preparation of anyone involved in a peacekeeping operation. The contributions of Conflict Resolution theory and practise to peacekeeping practise are identified early on and considered throughout the course. in any international intervention process. occasions will arise whereby military and vii Approach . contingency and complementarity approaches. Scope The course focuses predominantly at the international level of conflict and conflict intervention. however. One essential component of the training and preparation is a better understanding of conflict and its resolution. with the composition of missions developing accordingly (including military and civilian peacekeepers. early warning and conflict prevention. Past peacekeeping experience clearly demonstrates that to be successful international actors require an awareness of the nature and relevance of Conflict Resolution theory and practice to their work. cultural understanding and gender awareness. and intercommunal). electoral monitoring. many of the principles and techniques that underlie this level are applicable to other levels of conflict (i. humanitarian assistance. governmental and non-governmental actors). from policy-making above to activities on the ground.e. because of the increasingly complex threats to international security.. human rights monitoring. peacekeeping responses have become much more elaborate. humanitarian personnel. However. demobilisation and rehabilitation. peace building and post-conflict reconstruction). The nature of conflict and the dynamics of contemporary conflict are defined. inter-governmental. post-conflict peace building and reconciliation. Aim The overall aim of this course is to provide the student with a basic understanding of the field of Conflict Resolution and its application – theoretically and practically – to peacekeeping intervention in contemporary international conflicts.

flexibility and creativity. a military soldier/officer/observer securing the peace in a peacekeeping environment. and to demonstrate how conflict resolution techniques and processes may be applied in conflict situations. the United Nations course on Peacekeeping & International Conflict Resolution does not intend to provide the student with a prescription for resolving the world’s conflicts. skills and approaches raised in the lesson to a personal conflict/conflict resolution experience. As such. or family members. Application viii . and Tom Woodhouse (1999). the course may be useful to both military and civilian representatives of the international peacekeeping community. and the range of actors involved in trying to create and sustain peace in war-torn societies. principles. Additional readings are also suggested to allow the student further exploration of the lesson’s content. effective conflict intervention requires understanding. or to a current conflict situation. Following each lesson a Recommended Reading is given from the textbook by Hugh Miall. Students are invited to engage with the exercises on their own or with colleagues. The course is aimed at anyone working in a zone of conflict. The course offers the student a broad understanding of the fundamental concepts. Oliver Ramsbotham. whether a government or international organisation representative designing intervention policy. The aim of the exercise is to apply the concepts.civilian peacekeepers may be required to engage in conflict resolution activities at the interpersonal and intergroup levels. or a non-governmental representative working with local communities. analytical and practical tools that will allow him or her to understand and operate more effectively in peacekeeping environments. Audience Given the complexity and diversity of contemporary conflicts. Students may also take advantage of the Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution chat room on the UNITAR POCI internet home-page. the course includes a interactive exercises at the end of each lesson in addition to the self-scoring End-ofLesson Quiz. It also requires the ability to assess a situation and determine whether it is safe and/or constructive to intervene or not to intervene. a humanitarian worker providing relief in a complex emergency. To assist the student in understanding the issues in the lessons. and share peacekeeping and conflict resolution experiences with other course participants. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. It seeks to provide the student with some of the conceptual. or to a conflict scenario provided. As no two conflicts are identical. friends. a civilian police officer maintaining law and order. reflect on the exercises. The chat room allows students to discuss the course issues. and techniques of conflict resolution that may be applied in a variety of contexts and on a number of different levels.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v Method of Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Needs and Values Power Lesson 3 Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution . . . . . . . . ix Lesson 1 The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii Table of Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Introduction Defining Conflict Conflict Structure and Dynamics Objective and Subjective Dimensions of Conflict Positions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Introduction Historical Background The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping Lesson 2 The Nature of Conflict . . . . . . . 31 Introduction Conflict Management. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Interest. . . . . . . . Resolution and Transformation Win-Win Outcomes Third Party Intervention Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution Conflict Resolution Training ix . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Peacekeeping and International Conflict Resolution TABLE OF CONTENTS Letter to the Student . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vi Foreword . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iv Format of Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Settlement. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . 59 Introduction Defining Major Contemporary Conflicts Trends. . .Lesson 4 Contemporary Conflict Dynamics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict Conflict Types Theories of Conflict Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict Lesson 5 Conflict Mapping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95 Introduction The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep” Prevention The Prevention of Violent Conflicts: Cases and Organisations Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP Lesson 7 Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War-Zones . . . . . . . 115 Introduction The Contingency-Complementarity Model Peacekeeping in the Contingency Model Defining Peacekeeping The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s Criticisms of Peacekeeping in the 1990s New Thinking About Peacekeeping Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution x . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 Introduction What is Conflict Mapping? A Conflict Map of Rwanda Lesson 6 Early Warning and Conflict Prevention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping . . . . . .Lesson 8 Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building . . . . . . . . . . 165 Introduction Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice Cultural Response 1 Cultural Response 2 Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping Case Study: Intervention in Somalia Developing Cultural Awareness Skills Lesson 10 Gender Issues in Peacekeeping . . . . . . . . . 139 Introduction Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo The United Nations Framework for Peace Building Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below Co-ordinating Military and Civilian Roles in Peace Building Contingency and Complementarity in Practice: A Case Study of Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia Lesson 9 Culture. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 191 Introduction Gender and Conflict Management Styles Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice A Gender Analysis of Conflict The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace Building End-of-Course Examination . 215 xi . . . . . . . .

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3. rather than specific enemy forces. Introduction Historical Background of Conflict Resolution The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution Peacekeeping and The goal of peace operations is not military victory.Richard Rinaldo (1994). . The conflict is the enemy.LESSON 1 THE EMERGENCE AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE FIELD OF CONFLICT RESOLUTION 1. 2. US Army Field Manual 100-23: Peace Operations .

Recent debates and ideas are reviewed. After studying the material contained in this lesson. Summarise the contributions that conflict resolution theory and practice offer to the practice of peacekeeping. Begin reflecting on his/her own conflict and conflict resolution experiences in conflict situations and peacekeeping environments. the student will be able to: Trace the historical origins of the field of Conflict Resolution. Define the relationship between the academic field of Conflict Resolution and the practice of peacekeeping. Identify the key pioneers and institutions that have contributed to the development of conflict resolution theory and practice. . beginning with the origins in peace research and the first institutional developments in the 1950s and 1960s. and the relevance of conflict resolution ideas to peacekeeping is defined. Discuss some of the methods and processes of conflict management advocated by these contributors.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 2 LESSON OBJECTIVES In this lesson you will be introduced to the historical origins and development of the academic field of conflict resolution.

Both areas have developed a common interest in the dynamics and resolution of conflict and are underpinned by many of the same concepts and principles. including international relations. economics. At about the same time that the field of Conflict Resolution was emerging at the height of the Cold War. socialist and liberal internationalist movements to prevent the outbreak of the First World War motivated many people to develop a “science of peace” that would provide a firmer basis for preventing future wars. law. Dag Hammarskjöld and Lester B. recent attempts have been made to merge the theory and practice of conflict resolution and peacekeeping. and has come of age in the post-Cold War era. the historical evolution of the field of Conflict Resolution is outlined and individuals who have contributed strategically to the subject are identified. Lewis Fry Richardson and Quincy Wright.1 Conflict Resolution As well as being a set of techniques for the resolution of conflict by a third party. 2. 2. Based on the assumption that conflict can be a catalyst for positive personal and social change. the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF I). The discussion is not exhaustive. development studies. communication studies. a number of critical perspectives have further enhanced the field. Historical Background of Conflict Resolution In this section.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 3 1. many others have played important roles. Despite a history of “mutual neglect” between the field of Conflict Resolution and the practice of peacekeeping. conflict resolution focuses on preventing.1 Precursors: Before 1945 The failure of the variety of peace. psychology and psychotherapy. stopping or transforming violent conflict using peaceful. anthropology. non-violent methods. Pearson were defining the basic principles of peacekeeping. These principles were to guide the work of one of the first peacekeeping operation. management. Introduction 1. 1. Prominent here were the early empirical studies of war and conflict conducted in the inter-war years by Pitrim Sorokin. It has been informed by a variety of academic disciplines. decreasing. Conflict Resolution is an applied academic study that has been defined over the past 50 years. In the later stages of development. created in response to the Suez Canal crisis in the Middle East in 1956.2 Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping The academic study and practice of conflict resolution has much in common with the role of peacekeeping in international conflict management. sociology and peace research. .

Here he founded the Department of Sociology at Harvard in 1930. she anticipated much of the later problem-solving agenda. The first product of this research was an essay in 1919. and later of the United Nations. led him to research the causes of war. Advocating a “mutual gains” approach to negotiation (associated with what was later called “integrative bargaining”) against the traditional concession/convergence approach (associated with “distributive bargaining”). he had collated his studies. frustration-aggression theories of human conflict and work on the .Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 4 2. However. along with his background in science and mathematics and his growing interest in the field of psychology.1. he left for the United States. by the mid-1940s. and.1.3 Quincy Wright Wright was Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago from 1923. but following a dispute with Lenin in 1922. after sixteen years of comprehensive research. His work inspired the formation of the Richardson Institute of Peace and Conflict Research in London.1. they were not published until after his death when Wright (with whom Richardson had entered into correspondence in his later years) and other academics succeeded in having them published in two volumes (Arms and Insecurity and Statistics of Deadly Quarrels) in 1960. This study was one of the first attempts to make an empirical synthesis of the variety of factors related to the historical incidence of war. but served from 1913 to the end of the war with the Friend’s Ambulance Service in France. The third volume of his four-volume Social and Cultural Dynamics. he produced his monumental work. pioneering work was being done which would later enrich Conflict Resolution. 2. published in the late1930s. 2. “The Mathematical Psychology of War”. (This will be further discussed in Lessons 2 and 3.2 Lewis Fry Richardson Richardson was born into a prominent Quaker family in England. He compiled a catalogue of every conflict he could find information on since 1820.) Initiatives in other fields also contributed to the future of interdisciplinary study of conflict resolution: in psychology. Both Wright and Richardson were to later refer to Sorokin’s work. contained an analysis of war. A Study of War. His experience in the war. An enthusiastic advocate of the work of the League of Nations in the 1920s and 1930s.1 Pitrim Sorokin Sorokin was a Professor of Sociology in Russia. in which what is now known as his “arms race model” first appeared. including a statistical survey of warfare since the sixthcentury BC. He worked for the Meteorological Office. a committee of American scholars nominated him for the Nobel Peace Prize. 2.1. In 1970.4 Other Precursors Elsewhere. Prominent here was the thinking of Mary Parker Follett in the field of organisational behaviour and labour-management relations. becoming Professor of International Law in 1931.

2. The combination of analysis and practice implicit in the new ideas was not easy to reconcile with traditional scholarly institutions or the traditions of practitioners such as diplomats and politicians. industrial relations.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 5 social-psychology of groups. with a small group of academics. Here. Accounts and analyses of pacifist and non-violent objectives and strategies have also influenced and defined the formation of the Conflict Resolution field.2 Foundations: The 1950s and 1960s The historical evolution of Conflict Resolution gained momentum in the 1950s and 1960s. whether it occurs in international relations. such as those contained in the beliefs of Quakers. (The first institution of peace and conflict research was the Peace Research Laboratory. However. (including the mathematician-biologist Anatol Rapoport. families. Mennonites. The international relations profession had its own understanding of international conflict and did not see value in the new approaches as proposed. and began with her a partnership which was to make an important contribution to the formation of peace and conflict research. For example. Motivated personally and spiritually as a member of the Society of Friends (Quakers). Boulding’s publications focused on the issue of preventing war.g. and set up the Center for Research on Conflict Resolution in 1959. Louis.2. after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. internal wars. creation of the European Union). married Elise Bjorn-Hansen in 1941.) The field also began to develop its own subdivisions. A group of pioneers from different disciplines saw the value of studying conflict as a general phenomenon. Conflict and Defense. partly because of the failures of the discipline of international relations. the functionalist approach to overcoming the realist win-lose dynamic of competitive inter-state relations through cross-border institution-building (e. social conflicts and techniques ranging from negotiation and mediation to experimental games. they were not taken seriously by some. at the height of the Cold War. Lentz in St. formal centres in academic institutions and scholarly journals to develop these ideas. the analysis of political revolution. Missouri. Individuals in North America and Europe began to establish research groups. and professionally as an economist. founded by Theodore F. the historical traditions of pacifism. when the development of nuclear weapons and conflict between the superpowers seemed to threaten human survival. After the war he was appointed Professor of Economics at the University of Michigan. the social psychologist Herbert Kelman and the sociologist Norman Angell). in political studies. the new ideas attracted interest and the field began to grow and spread. communities. and Buddhists and the ideas of Gandhi. His book. with different groups studying international crises. advanced the thesis of the decline of the nation state. he moved to America in 1937. domestic politics. or between individuals. he initiated the Journal of Conflict Resolution (JCR) in 1957. with similar properties.1 Kenneth Boulding and the Journal of Conflict Resolution Boulding was born in England in 1910. 2. in international studies.. have enhanced the academic understanding of violent conflict and peaceful alternatives. while Perspectives on the Economics of Peace argued that . Yet.

These categories were also used (but with revised definitions) in Boutros-Ghali’s Agenda for Peace (1992).g. whatever blinds us to this or seeks to justify it). Further emergence of peace research institutions in Europe during the 1960s was widespread. to replace the inadequate insights available through standard diplomacy. Holland. Another influential idea attributed to Galtung is the conflict triangle (discussed in Lesson 2). and cultural violence by changing attitudes.e. launched in 1964. to describe the differences between intervention operations employed at different stages of conflict. a Norwegian... became visiting Professor at Columbia University in 1958. structural violence by removing structural injustices. in the first issue of the JCR.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 6 conventional prescriptions from international relations were unable to recognise. His output over the past 35 years has been phenomenal and his influence on the institutionalisation and ideas of peace research seminal. He was also the founding editor of the Journal of Peace Research. peacemaking and Peace Building.3 John Burton and a New Paradigm in International Studies Burton was born in Australia in 1915. which demonstrated Richardson’s influence. structural violence (e.. 2. To this can be added his further distinction between negative peace and positive peace. We end direct violence by changing conflict behaviours. Wright contributed an article proposing a “project on a world intelligence centre”. whilst anticipating what has more recently been called “early warning” and “conflict prevention”. In 1962 the Polemological Institute was formed in Groningen. He was also the first to make an analytical distinction between three tasks that could be undertaken by the international community in response to conflict: peacekeeping. most remarkably in the influential work of Galtung. and by the development of a research and information capability. and in 1969 the Tampere Peace Research Institute was formed in Finland. Galtung. the former characterised by the absence of direct violence. Following his studies at the London School of Economics from 1938. the consequences of this decline. If war was the outcome of inherent characteristics in the sovereign state system then it might be prevented by a reform of international organisation. Galtung developed the distinction between direct violence (e. the latter by also overcoming structural and cultural violence as well. children die through poverty) and cultural violence (i.2. Data collection and processing could enable the advance of scientific knowledge about the build-up of conflicts. For example. returning to Oslo in 1960 to help found a unit for research into conflict and peace at the University of Oslo– the precursor to the International Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). attended the foundation conference of the United Nations in San Francisco. he joined the Australian civil service.2. children are murdered). in 1966 the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) was opened to commemorate Sweden’s 150 years of peace. 2.g. served in the Australian Department of External Affairs. .2 Johan Galtung and Conflict Resolution in Northern Europe The emergence of peace and conflict research in Scandinavia is notable. let alone analyse.

and water) and are not necessarily in short supply. Burton began to develop his theories about the use of controlled communication. However. cannot be traded or satisfied by power bargaining. combining domestic-social and international dimensions and focusing at a hybrid level between interstate war and purely domestic unrest. Secondly. identity and recognition. which held its first conference in Groningen. Needs theory holds that deeprooted conflicts are caused by the denial of one or more basic human needs. After a research fellowship at the Australian National University in Canberra. This led to the formation of the Centre for the Analysis of Conflict at the University College. conflicts based on unsatisfied needs can be resolved. With proper understanding. This model anticipated much of the re-evaluation of international relations thinking that has occurred since the end of the Cold War. The theory distinguishes between interests and needs: interests. of which he became the first Honorary Secretary. His ideas about how to better handle conflict were influenced by systems theory and games theory as means of analysing the options available to conflict parties. territory. or the problem-solving method. At the same time. the main effort went into translating detente between the superpowers into formal win-win agreements. in international conflict (discussed in Lesson 3). London (1966) under the Directorship of Burton. can be traded. where he assisted Edward Azar with the formation of the Center for International Development and Conflict Management. This was linked to attempts to co-ordinate international study through the formation of an International Peace Research Association (IPRA). needs. being nonmaterial. an important part of an emerging theory of international conflict. such as security. Burton later spent a period at the University of Maryland. 2. non-material human needs are not scarce resources (e. Holland (1965). minerals.g. Whilst a diplomat. the focus was on developing expertise in Alternative . he was appointed to a post at University College London in 1963. His appointment coincided with the formation of the Conflict Research Society in London. It was attempting to formulate a theoretical understanding of destructive conflict at three levels. Firstly. oil. Burton became dissatisfied with traditional diplomacy and began to advocate bringing together multidisciplinary insights about conflict at the international level from a much broader perspective than the formal international relations field.. at the level of domestic politics.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 7 and served as High Commissioner in Ceylon. What made it possible to unlock these intractable conflicts for Burton was the application of human needs theory through the problem-solving approach.3 Constructions: The 1970s and 1980s By the early 1970s. instead seeing conflict as intrinsic in human relationships. Conflict Resolution had defined its specific subject area. He broke away from the sociological tradition of regarding conflict as dysfunctional. bargained and negotiated. with a view to refining the most appropriate practical responses. Azar and Burton developed the concept of protracted social conflict. An early product of this initiative was the publication of Conflict in Society. being primarily about material goods. at the interstate level.

From his experiences of the Biafran War in Nigeria. defines peace and conflict as a set of peaceful and unpeaceful relationships. 2. which distinguishes between positions (i. Harvard has continued to be at the forefront of the study of negotiation and conflict resolution. Curle felt a need to understand more about why these conflicts happened. Curle’s academic interest in peace was a product of front-line experiences with conflict in Pakistan and Africa. One of the facilitators of the second workshop was Herbert C. a group at Harvard University. consists of making changes to relationships so that they may be brought to a point where development can occur. Thirdly. Given his . UK (1973). A significant development within the program is the principled negotiation approach.1 The Harvard School: Problem Solving and Principled Negotiation Three groups of scholar-practitioners were involved in the development of the theory and practice of problem-solving. peacemaking. a group at Yale University and.2 Adam Curle: The Theory and Practice of Mediation Coming from an academic background in anthropology. It has been popularised through Roger Fisher and William Ury’s best-selling title Getting to Yes. initially referred to as “controlled communication”: a group based at the University College. Singapore and Indonesia.3. The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School involves a consortium of academic centres and draws from a range of disciplines. therefore. a leading social psychologist who formed the Program on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution at Harvard. His work.. Making Peace. where he not only witnessed the threats to development from the eruption of violent conflicts. labour and community mediation). He saw violence. He went on to become the leading practitioner-scholar of the problemsolving method over the next thirty years. London. Curle moved from Harvard to take up the first Chair of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford.3. concrete demands) held by the parties and their underlying interests. was the definition and analysis of deep-rooted conflicts (or “intractable conflicts” or “protracted social conflicts”).Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 8 Dispute Resolution (ADR) (e. respectively.g.e. processes of social change and the goals of development as linked themes. They were designed to address the conflicts between Malaysia. family conciliation. and the most significant development in the 1970s and 1980s. between the two. 2. Kelman’s series of Arab-Israeli interactive problem-solving workshops (1974-91) had an important influence on the eventual conclusion of the Oslo Accords in 1993.. but was increasingly drawn into the practice of peacemaking as a mediator. (These types of conflict will be described in Lesson 4. Kelman. specialising in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The first attempts to apply the problem-solving method were in two workshops organised by the London group in 1965 and 1966. psychology and development education. and between the Greek and Turkish communities in Cyprus. it also produces the Negotiation Journal. later. in which the distinction between international and domestic level causes was seen to be blurred. conflict.) This period also saw the first attempts to apply the problem-solving approach to real conflicts.

e.3. rather than as a set of “peace-enforcing” rules and organisations. She was active in the promotion of peace research and education through the United Nations system. third. the next one hundred years from the 1980s) contains within it the basis for a world civic culture and peaceful problem-solving among nations. to provide information to and between the conflict parties. including projects with UNESCO. She was also an early supporter of the idea of civil society – opening up new possibilities for a global civic culture that is receptive to the voices of people and cultural communities who are not part of the traditional discourses of nation-state politics.. or “citizens diplomacy”. as well as in the structures and institutions within which they are embedded. often out of fear of what was happening in the public world. maintain and improve communications. For Boulding.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 9 academic background. women).e. Boulding anticipated many of the preoccupations of conflict resolution participants today (e. He developed the concept of “soft mediation”. The use of social imagination was placed within the context of what she called the 200 year present. i. to “befriend” the conflict parties. peace-making demands specific “craft and skills”. the next half of our “200 year present” (i. (See Lesson 3..e. local communities. For Boulding. UNIDIR. and encouraging them to participate in peace and conflict resolution processes. second.) 2. which later became “Track 2 mediation”. inspired by the values of his Quaker practice. but also the possibility of Armageddon. In the Middle identifies four elements to his mediation process. his background in humanistic psychology and his field experiences: first. In doing so. the purpose of studying social structures was to identify those that enhanced rather than restrained.. or even suppressed.. the success with which these skills are encouraged and operationalised will determine whether. the mediator acts to build. to cultivate a willingness to engage in co-operative negotiation). She introduced the idea of imaging the future – enabling people to break out of the defensive private shells into which they retreated. it was natural that he should see peace broadly in terms of human development. we must understand that we live in a social space that reaches into the past and into the future. In the relationships that make up social and political life. . serving as Secretary General of the International Peace Research Association (IPRA) from 1964 and chair of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. to encourage what he refers to as “active mediation” (i.g. in the end. a peace praxis which must be taught so that more and more people begin to deal with conflict from an integrative standpoint. we are “peace-makers” or “war-makers”. and fourth. and the United Nations University.3 Elise Boulding: New voices in Conflict Resolution Boulding trained as a sociologist and was involved in the early work of the Michigan Centre. UNITAR. Curle’s work is an illustration both of the applied nature of conflict resolution and of the crucial link between academic theory and practice. The development of local and international citizens” networks could be a way of ensuring that the former prevailed. For Curle. human potential.

4 Reconstructions: The 1990s The 1990s offered Conflict Resolution increasingly unexpected opportunities to make effective contributions to the resolution of contemporary deadly conflicts. is one of the chief exponents of this approach. and 10. The conflict resolution and development fields have come together in this shared enterprise. most of them set up by men who. she views violent conflict as a social product and looks to structurationist theory. constitute a majority among the exemplars (although. There are four linked areas where there has been innovative constructive criticism. 9. with its recognition of the mutual dependency of agency and structure. importing their own conceptions of conflict and conflict resolution and ignoring local resources. The exclusion of women . The result is that we continually re-solve conflicts instead of developing a solution that will not reappear again or re-solutions that did not work the first time. which refers to the longer-term and deeper structural. has come greater critical scrutiny. 2.4. conflict resolution ideas are being tested both at local and international levels. they are largely excluded from high-level negotiations despite their active participation in local peace movements and peace-making initiatives. as well as to international aid and development work. in favour of a cluster of practices and principles referred to collectively as Peace Building from below.4.2 Power. however. Vivienne Jabri’s work is an example. John Paul Lederach. The involvement of women in formal peace processes and negotiations has been very limited.3 A Gendered Critique of Conflict Resolution This lesson has shown how Conflict Resolution as an academic project was created and institutionalised in a small number of centres. yet they are often the main creators of new modes of survival and conflict resolution. today the gender proportions may well be more equal). (These issues will be discussed at length in Lessons 8. The perspective here further emphasises the process ofconflict transformation. Participation and Transformation A second area of constructive criticism is found at the interface between traditional conflict resolution approaches and critical social theory. These criticisms have been applied to the international community’s Peace Building efforts. and where conflict resolution work is being adapted accordingly. 2. consequently.) 2. Number-counting is of less significance than the fact that women are usually the silent victims of violent conflict.4.1 Peace Building From Below In the 1990s there was a significant shift away from “top-down” Peace Building whereby powerful outsiders act as experts. The danger of failing to incorporate a critical-theoretical approach is that attempts at conflict resolution will simply reinforce the unchallenged order that generated the conflict in the first place (including exclusion and domination). As both a sociologist and conflict resolution specialist. to bridge the gap between the individualist and structuralist approaches.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 10 2. relational and cultural dimensions of conflict resolution. With greater opportunity. a scholar-practitioner with practical experience in Central America and Africa.

It has taken on unfamiliar roles in prevention (UNPREDEP in Macedonia). The expansion in peacemaking. has propelled the culture question in Conflict Resolution to the top of the agenda.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 11 from the discourse about new political structures defined in peace agreements. humanitarian (delivering emergency relief). peacekeepers (military and civilian) are increasingly required to use psychological and communications strategies over the use of military force. or the inappropriateness of attempted conflict resolution approaches. 3.1 Defining the Relationship Following the end of the Cold War. may well be factors that perpetuate the exclusionist and violent discourses and institutions which contribute to the conflict in the first place. UNTAC in Cambodia. one of the striking features of recent analyses by practitioners of peacekeeping has been the frequency with which they refer to the relevance of aspects of conflict resolution. This eventually led to a major controversy in the 1980s in the form of an explicit critique of Burton’s universal human needs theory by anthropologists Kevin Avruch and Peter Black (Center for Conflict Analysis. has also been raised. USA). it has become more common for Conflict Resolution theorists to refer to peacekeeping as an important instrument of positive conflict transformation. Anthropological studies have long demonstrated the diversity of conflict expression and conflict resolution practice across cultures. George Mason University. political (restoring legitimate government).4. 2. as well as post-settlement Peace Building (ONUSAL in El Salvador. there has been no doubt about the extent of cultural ignorance and misunderstanding. The presence of thousands of military and civilian personnel from numerous countries in conflict zones in all parts of the world. The Relationship Between Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping 3. intervention in active war zones (UNOMIL in Liberia. the question of whether the Conflict Resolution field constitutes a truly global enterprise as its founders assumed. ONUMOZ in Mozambique). In the same way. has shown up glaring cultural discontinuities. Others have also offered cultural perspectives in response to the “Western” assumptions of the field. UNPROFOR in Bosnia. and the political process of negotiations determined at international level. Consequently.4 The Culture Question In the last decade. or whether it is based upon hidden cultural specifics that are not universal. securing the environment). and economic (assisting efforts for . peacekeeping has become central to the international community’s response to many complex violent conflicts. peacekeeping and Peace Building work in areas of conflict in the 1990s. attempting to achieve common conflict resolution goals. Although the end goals and objectives of peacekeeping may be defined as military (controlling and ending violence. including John Paul Lederach. In this sense. In many cases. UNOSOM in Somalia).

Washington. Wider Peacekeeping. or technical and military skills – designed to win hearts and minds. and legitimate conduct) can only be observed by a closer integration of the communication and problem-solving strategies associated with conflict resolution into the doctrine and practice of peacekeeping.1 Understanding the nature of the conflict environment: causes. if not counter-productive. and Permanent Joint Headquarters. the cultural dynamics of the conflict and its local population must be fully understood to avoid inappropriate and insensitive intervention processes. for example. mutual respect. Field Manual 100-23: Peace Operations . impartiality. conflict resolution concepts and techniques are now seen to be of increasing importance. mediation. The first two are framework requirements for successful third party intervention.2 Here. In addition. peacekeeping on the ground is essentially comprised of conflict management and communication activities. outside intervention will be ineffective. 5. negotiation. minimum use of force. London: HMSO.1 The same approach has been taken in the US doctrine covering peace support operations. 4. It is noticeable how much of the military peacekeeping doctrine is suffused with the language of conflict resolution. There are 10 broad areas in which the theory and practice of conflict resolution may contribute to the effective practise of military and civilian peacekeepers in conflict zones.2 Conflict Resolution’s Contribution to Peacekeeping In every aspect of peacekeeping. Wider Peacekeeping and its more recent doctrine for Peace Support Operations. This includes. 1 . The original principles of peacekeeping (consent. (Lessons 2. legitimacy. British Army (1995). Vol. DC: Department of the Army. 3. the peacekeeping doctrine of the British Army. 3. These consent-promoting techniques constitute the “soft” skills and processes of peacekeeping – as opposed to the “hard”. London: HMSO 2 United States (1994). and conflict mapping. and of positive approaches to community relations through an active and well-funded civil affairs programme. minimum force. the management of consent (based on the principles of impartiality. Peace Support Operations: Joint Warfare Publication 3-50.2.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 12 development). 6 and 9) Unless the nature and political intensity of the conflict arena is understood.5 of the British Army Field Manual. These will be explored throughout the remainder of the course. dynamics. credibility and transparency) is also related to the techniques of promoting good communication.

Third parties must understand the difference between impartiality. An understanding of the psychology of conflict and its relation to acts of reconciliation is invaluable here. values and needs is helpful here.6 Promoting reconciliation: healing relationships.2. (Lessons 3 and 7) Difficult choices must sometimes be made: (a) between coercion and positive inducement.2.3 and 3. 3. military and civilian peacekeepers and humanitarian workers often have opportunities to contribute to these processes in small but significant ways. (Lesson 8) Although post-war reconciliation between individuals and communities is usually a longterm project. Numbers 7 and 8 concern relations between intervenors and the levels of intervention. Numbers 3 to 6 concern relations between the intervenors (military or civilian) and the conflict parties. or (b) between advocacy and impartial mediation.3 Managing relations with conflict parties: negotiating consent. An appropriate mix of mutually reinforcing strategies and agencies needs to be brought together.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 13 3. work with and through local individuals. Sensitivity to local conflict management processes is important here. wherever possible.2. values and needs: problem-solving at the local level. Awareness of the difference between positions. (Lessons 3 and 7) The negotiation of consent is a fundamental conflict resolution skill.2. Conflict resolution should be elicitive rather than prescriptive.2. 3. The aim is to build co-operation and trust. and how all three are compromised in intense conflict situations.6 is the principle that outside intervenors should.2. . but worth citing as a separate skill. (Lessons 2 and 3) Associated with 3.5 Accommodating interests. is the cluster of techniques known as “problem-solving”.2.3 to 3.4.2 Choosing appropriate intervention strategies: contingency and complementarity. groups and institutions.2.4 Handling relations between conflict parties: developing micro-level mediation skills. neutrality and relative disinterestedness. 3. (Lesson 3) There are numerous situations whereby peacekeepers are required to undertake formal or informal mediation at the local level between conflict parties. interests. Underlying 3.2. 3. Skilled problem-solvers may help to convert potentially or actually confrontational situations into a search for mutually satisfying outcomes.

9 and 3. Behind each of these lies the fundamental fact that conflict zones are highly charged arenas. both between peacekeepers and in relations with the local population. (Lessons 7 and 8) Some of the most frustrating problems in peacekeeping environments concern relations between different types of intervenors. 3. Peacekeepers need to develop awareness of the many ways in which cultural differences are relevant. (Lessons 2. relations with local communities).2. 3.10 Working in a multinational and multicultural environment: developing cultural awareness skills. Peacekeeping environments have their own internal political and cultural dynamics that peacekeepers often ignore at their peril. In the concentrated atmosphere of protracted violent conflict.7 Facilitating co-operation between intervention agents: maximising comparative advantage. interagency co-ordination. 3.2.. conflict parties will often interpret their actions as partisan (see 3.9 Handling the politics of power: integrating “hard” and “soft” power intervention options at macro.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 14 3.and micro-levels. coercion) and “soft” (co-operative. whatever their view of the situation.10 concern common features of conflict intervention of which third parties should be aware and which require some skill in managing. Acquaintance with conflict resolution approaches may be helpful. .g. 3. integrative) power options.2. both internal and external. This can prove problematic in times of tension when initiatives at one level translate in unpredictable ways at another. (Lesson 9) The “culture question” is now recognised as an important issue for UN peacekeeping. peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel are often confronted by unwelcome and intractable ethical dilemmas. including the question of whether the intervention itself is improving or worsening the situation for those living in the conflict area.8 Integrating intervention levels: operating effectively at the interface.2.2. They need to be aware that their intervention affects power relations in the conflict zone and that. There are numerous relations to be managed and negotiated here (e.2. (Lesson 7) Peacekeepers work at the interface between “structural-political” and “culturalcommunity” levels.3 above). 7 and 10) Peacekeepers are regularly confronted by choices between “hard” (threat.2. 3.

“UNPROFOR: Some Observations from a Conflict Resolution Perspective”. 1(2): 170-203. “Peacekeeping and the Psychology of Conflict Resolution”. “The Theory of Conflict Resolution and the Practice of Peacekeeping”.). Basingstoke: Macmillan. (Chapter 2. “Creating Security Space: Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution”. CT: Praeger. Encyclopedia of International Peackeeping Operations. Contemporary Conflict Resolution.39-64. Ramsbotham and T.141-5. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). Cambridge: Polity Press. Chapter 5.) Fetherston. The Psychology of Peacekeeping.26-39. in E. International Peacekeeping. Santa Barbara. O. in H.) (2000). S. T. Woodhouse. pp. Woodhouse. . Constructions and Reconstructions”.153-66. A. and O. T. (1998). pp.). Ryan. A Future for Peacekeeping?. Ramsbotham. pp. London: Frank Cass. pp.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 15 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall.B. California: ABC Clio Press. and T. (1998). Moxon-Browne (ed. Woodhouse (1999). Langholtz (ed. “Conflict Resolution: Foundations. Westport. O. Ramsbotham (eds. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution.. Woodhouse (1994).

specialising in which conflict: a. Northern Ireland b. True b. The field of Conflict Resolution emerged at the same time as the basic principles of peacekeeping were being defined. satisfying basic human needs through problem-solving methods c. and Sorokin d. Catholic and Protestant communities in Northern Ireland 6. Herbert Kelman became the leading problem-solving scholar-practitioner. Journal of Conflict Resolution 4. Burton. Malaysia. a. Greek and Turkish communities in Cyprus c. Journal of Peace Research d. Sorokin. and Wright 2. compromising needs through negotiation b. Problem-Solving Workshops c. Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) b. a set of peace-enforcement rules 5. Burton. Prominent to the development of the field of Conflict Resolution during the inter-war years was the early work of: a. False 3. John Burton’s human needs theory is based on: a. Israel and Palestine d. Singapore and Indonesia b. Azar. The first two problem-solving workshops were designed to address the real conflicts between: a. Richardson. India-Pakistan c. Galtung. Kenneth Boulding’s major contribution to Conflict Resolution was: a. Nigeria d. and Galtung b. enabling access to scarce resources d. Richardson. Richardson. Israel-Palestine . and Wright c.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 16 LESSON 1 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1.

Elise Boulding developed the concept of: a. integrating intervention levels. promoting reconciliation. 2-True. 10-any three from the following: understanding the nature of conflict. provide information. 7-build/improve communication. imaging the future d. pacifist approaches to violence c. encourage co-operation. including interagency co-ordination. 9-a. controlled communication c. 6-d. developing problem-solving skills. befriend. handling politics of power. positive peace 9. choosing appropriate intervention strategies. the skills to deal with conflict constructively b. List the four elements of Adam Curle’s mediation process developed in In the Middle. 8. facilitating co-operation. 4-b. 3-d. 5-a. developing cultural awareness skills . developing mediation skills. managing relations with conflict parties through negotiation. the analysis of protracted social conflicts 10. b. campaigns against the development of nuclear weapons d. 8-c. Peace praxis refers to: a. active mediation b. To encourage wider participation in peace and conflict resolution processes. Answer Key: 1-b.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 17 7. List three areas in which the theory and practice of conflict resolution may contribute to the practice of peacekeeping.

who? What events led to the situation arising? How did you behave in the situation? Was your response appropriate or inappropriate. Consideration/Discussion: Did the situation involve other individuals or groups? If so. or with another individual(s). effective or ineffective? What were your strengths and/or weaknesses in the situation? How could the outcome have been improved if you had known more or responded differently? . think of a challenging situation(s) that you have faced in the field. Method: On your own. whether or not the situation(s) relates to the 10 areas listed above.Lesson 1/The Emergence and Development of the Field of Conflict Resolution 18 Exercise: Reflecting on Experience Objective: To allow the student to begin exploring conflict and conflict resolution by reflecting on his/her own experiences in peacekeeping environments.

Their thinking is the problem. 4. 5. 3. it is ultimately the reality as each side sees it that constitutes the problem in a negotiation and opens the way to a solution.Roger Fisher & William Ury. may cause a war. even if established. 6. may do nothing to solve the problem… As useful as looking for objective reality can be. Facts. 2. Introduction Defining Conflict Conflict Structure and Dynamics Objective and Subjective Dimensions of Conflict Positions. are real fears and need to be dealt with. Getting to Yes . Interests. but in people’s heads…The difference itself exists because it exists in their thinking. Needs. Fears. and Values Power Understanding the other side’s thinking is not simply a useful activity that will help you solve your problem.LESSON 2 THE NATURE OF CONFLICT 1. . even if ill-founded. differences are defined by the difference between your thinking and theirs… Ultimately. Whether you are making a deal or settling a dispute. even if unrealistic. Hopes. conflict lies not in objective reality.

negative and neutral aspects of conflict.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 20 LESSON OBJECTIVES In this lesson conflicts are defined as complex events with both positive and negative qualities. The lesson also distinguishes between symmetric and asymmetric conflicts. Differentiate between hard and soft power . and the differences between the use of hard and soft power in conflicts. needs and values and how they influence conflict situations. After studying the material contained in this lesson. It is shown how despite this complexity conflicts do have common characteristics. Definitions of conflict are illustrated by reference to two brief case studies based on the Middle East and Northern Ireland. Distinguish between positions. interests. Discuss the basic analytical terms and tools used to understand conflict. Explain the objective and subjective dimensions of conflict. the student will be able to: Understand the positive. Define symmetric and asymmetric conflict.

) Conflict Resolution therefore aims to provide the space and skills to manage conflict in non-violent ways. Conflict is much more complex. contained and eliminated. it is perceived as the opposite of co-operation. conflict fosters the violence and damage that is familiar in wars and violent conflicts. yet. In this sense. DIAGRAM 2-1 . which has been developed by the London-based Conflict Resolution NGO.1 What is Conflict? Conflict is a very fluid and ambiguous concept. but a way of handling conflict. it is a multidimensional social process which is a common and essential feature of human existence. harmony. or peace. co-operation is not the opposite of conflict. social and political change and transformation. International Alert. conflict can act as a catalyst for personal.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 21 1. Introduction 1. When expressed and handled constructively. (This is illustrated in Diagram 2-1. (See the exercise at the end of the Lesson. When it is expressed destructively.) The word conflict usually has negative connotations: people often think that conflict is a destructive and undesirable process to be avoided.

whether it is interpersonal or international. whether it is pursued by peaceful means or by the use of force. It is difficult to define. needs or values. but it also includes one-sided violence.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 22 2. One way of conceptualising the relationship between these elements is a “conflict triangle” (illustrated in Diagram 2-2). Violent conflict or deadly conflict is similar to armed conflict. This definition suggests a broader span of time and a wider class of struggle than just armed conflict. structural violence). attitudes. However. conflict refers to the pursuit of incompatible goals by individuals or groups. Contemporary conflict refers to the prevailing pattern of political and violent conflicts in the post-Cold War world. 3. genocide against unarmed civilians. needs and values of others. an attack on a civilian by a single soldier. and behaviours at the points. with structures. The use of such a broad definition allows for the consideration of any conflict. It also encompasses the broader peace research concept of violence that includes exploitative social relations that cause unnecessary suffering (that is. In its simplest form. Defining Conflict Conflict is experienced at all levels of human activity. there are common insights and approaches to understanding the nature of conflict and managing it peacefully. In other words. Conflict Structure and Dynamics Conflicts are complex processes. a conflict dynamic occurs. denoting conflicts whereby parties on both sides resort to the use of force. while contemporary armed conflict refers to those that involve the use of force. When these perceptions lead to actions that come up against the interests. or an all-out war with massive casualties. for example. conflict situations arise when individuals or groups identify a goal they want to secure in order to satisfy material interests. Despite the diversity in level (from interpersonal to international) and intensity (from minor disagreements to major armed and violent wars). as it includes situations ranging from a military overflight. DIAGRAM 2-2 . Galtung first proposed this model for understanding conflict. all conflict situations have certain basic elements in common. Armed conflict is a narrower category.

These may be positive or negative. power. This complicates the task of addressing the original. Attitudes are often influenced by emotions such as fear.1 Objective Dimension The objective aspects of conflict are those that are largely independent of the parties’ perceptions and are based on interests that are assumed to be in short supply. Eventually. anger. Violent conflict behaviour is characterised by threats. Attitudes include the parties’ perceptions and misperceptions of each other and of themselves. It includes cooperation and coercion. Analysts who emphasise the objective dimensions of conflict are said to have an “instrumental” view of the sources of conflict. The conflict formation starts to grow and develop. core conflict. commodities. objectivists view the outcomes of conflict as a win- . Behaviours are actions undertaken by one party in conflict aimed at the opposing party with the intention of making that party abandon or change its goals. and spread (generating secondary conflicts within the main parties or among outsiders). deepen (becoming more protracted and possibly violent). gestures signifying conciliation or hostility. coercion and destructive attacks. By assuming that conflict is caused mainly by resource scarcity. Conflict is a dynamic process in which structures. This includes: (1) resources such as land. change in attitudes. an outer ring of emotions and psychological states – the subjective dimension. welfare. resolving the conflict must involve a set of dynamic. Objective and Subjective Views of Conflict Conflicts consist of two dimensions: firstly. and modern technology and (2) resources such as societal positions. and transformation of relationships or structures. Conflict parties then begin to develop hostile attitudes and conflictual behaviour.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 23 Structures refer to the political mechanisms. interdependent changes that involve deescalation of conflict behaviour. food water. processes. bitterness and hatred. There are problems with focussing only on this dimension of conflict. and recognition. 4. secondly. an inner ring of actual issues – the objective dimension. and institutions that influence the satisfaction of security. attitudes and behaviours are constantly changing and influencing one another. As it does so. the conflict may widen (drawing in other parties). A conflict emerges as parties’ interests come into conflict or the relationship they are in becomes oppressive. but in violent conflict parties tend to develop increasingly negative stereotypes of the other and an increasingly positive selfgroup identity. weapons. recognition and identity needs. 4.

This complex blend of elements has produced a society dominated by mutual opposition. 4. subjectivists believe that values are not limited (as objectivists believe). It is here that the subjective dimension is linked to the objective dimension.e. Conflict may have originally been over objective interests but as time goes by these interests are perceived and valued differently by the opposing parties. and political tradition.. Conflict is best understood when both levels of analysis are pursued and when both are addressed in the resolution process. with power being an influential factor. even when values are increased. the objective aspect of the conflict is embedded in layers of subjective considerations. 4. but once a conflict has started. including: the history of the two communities as descendants of separated indigenous and settler cultures in Ireland over several centuries. political and economic discrimination institutionalised between approximately 1920 and 1970. heritage. total defeat. Thus. mistrust. that is total victory. more precisely. The parties define their separate identities with the oppositional labels of religion (Catholic/Protestant). anxiety. anger. There is a core issue involving a scarce resource (i. However. Values then are central to the subjective dimension. mistrust and fear that has made Northern Ireland one of Europe’s most intractable contemporary .3 Example: Northern Ireland The conflict in Northern Ireland provides a clear example of how the subjective and objective dimensions of a conflict situation interact.2 Subjective Dimension The subjective aspects of conflict are those that are psychologically and emotionally rooted. beliefs and interaction of the parties are crucial in determining its outcome. which embrace larger cultural divisions of history. Real differences of interest may create conflict. Subjective approaches to conflict resolution involve attempts to improve the ways in which parties understand and behave towards each other. security increases as each side perceives that its level of security has increased. the exclusive control of that territory) and two communities with mutually exclusive preferred solutions to the territorial issue. jealousy. territory or. For example. the root of the conflict lies in the objective political issues of territorial sovereignty.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 24 lose situation. or compromise. the deep fault-lines of social. the perceptions. many conflicts still have some basic goal incompatibility based on interests and resources. the polarising and alienating effects of the institutionalisation of violence as a part of the daily norm since 1969. However. and can increase in supply as parties in conflict learn to co-operate with each other. at one level. Analysts who emphasise the subjective dimensions of conflict are said to have an “expressive” view of the sources of conflict. They include fear. hostility and other negative feelings that often cloud perception and inhibit rational communication.

The process of negotiation and mediation that led to the 1998 Good Friday Agreement between representatives of the two communities had to address both dimensions of the conflict. Two neighbours quarrel over a tree. an outcome that satisfies both sides’ needs may be found. No compromise is possible: the tree cannot be sawn in half. they discovered that the Israelis’ primary interest was in security. which are often non-negotiable. having only recently achieved independence. therefore. Interests are often easier to reconcile than positions because there are usually several positions that may satisfy them. Each neighbour takes the position that the tree is on his/her land..e. On deeper investigation. As long as the conflict is translated into the language of needs.) Some analysts (for example.1 Example: Camp David In the Camp David negotiations between Menachem Begin of Israel and Anwar Sadat of Egypt over the status of the Sinai Peninsula. the same principle of searching for a deeper level of compatible underlying motives still applies.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 25 conflicts. or relationships. (Although. Burton) take this further by identifying basic human needs (e. Intractable conflicts are seen to result from the denial of such needs. security for one party is reinforced by security for the other). this particular conflict was resolved.g. but was demilitarised (security). However. which may need to be changed to resolve the conflict. 5. identity. . security) that lie at the roots of other motives. such conflicts can only be resolved when these needs are satisfied. The situation becomes more difficult if the conflict is over values (ideological beliefs). 5. or one party’s solutions to an issue) and the underlying interests (one party’s concerns about an issue) in conflict situations. The positions may be irreconcilable. The Sinai was given to the Egyptians (sovereignty). Needs and Values One of the classical approaches in conflict resolution is to distinguish between positions (i. and the interest of the other is in using the shade of the tree.. yet basic needs are not – they are unlimited (e. This enabled the two sides to come up with a solution that satisfied the interests and needs of each without impinging on the other’s.. By exploring a range of positions that satisfied the parties’ underlying needs. but the interests are not. concrete demands held by each party. having fought a series of wars with their neighbours. A simple example will illustrate these concepts. Interests. it transpires that the interest of one neighbour is in using the fruit of the tree.g. The premise is that interests may be subject to relative scarcity. each took the position that his country wanted complete control of the land. Positions. The Egyptians’ interest was in sovereignty.

1 Symmetric and Asymmetric Conflict Conflicts that occur between relatively similar parties (i. From another point of view. The role of a third party is to assist with this transformation. non-violent approaches use “soft power” to move towards a more balanced relationship. soft power may be more important in conflicts managed peacefully. however. Hard power has always been important in violent conflict situations. even asymmetric conflicts impose costs on both parties. those who have equal power) are referred to as symmetric conflicts. however. Power 6.. making demonstrations of resolve. or coercive power. . refers to the power to command.. Soft power. or persuasive power. the under-dogs may withdraw from the unbalanced relationship and start building anew. increasing solidarity. He further distinguishes between two forms of soft power: exchange power (“do what I want and I will do what you want”) and integrative power. Conflicts that arise between dissimilar parties (e. including influencing and persuading the power-holders. the root of the conflict lies not in particular issues or interests that may divide the parties. There are ways in which this can be approached without using violent coercion. Because the unequal power structure is unbalanced and upheld by various props. in some views. are considered asymmetric conflicts. raising awareness of the conflict among those who are external or internal supporters of the top-dog to weaken the regime. mobilising popular movements. The only way to resolve the conflict is to change the structure. removing the props may make the unbalanced structure collapse. This then opens the possibility for conflict resolution through a shift from the existing structure of relationships to another. Conflict resolvers try to shift emphasis away from the use of threat power and towards the use of exchange and integrative power.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 26 6. between a majority and a minority. means the power to induce. unbalanced relationships into peaceful and dynamic ones. This means transforming unpeaceful. or an established government and a group of rebels). There are costs for the top-dogs in sustaining themselves in power and keeping the underdogs down. In the latter. Thus. In this sense. Classical conflict resolution. the cost of the relationship often becomes unbearable for both sides. In severe asymmetric conflicts. order. associated with persuasion and transformative long-term problem-solving (“together. legitimise or inspire cooperation. the under-dog always loses. applies only to symmetric conflicts.2 Hard and Soft Power Hard power. It may be that this structure cannot be changed without conflict. we can do something that is better for both of us”). but in the very structure of who they are and the relationship between them. Another tactic is to strengthen and empower the underdogs.g. there are no win-win outcomes (see Lesson 3) and the third party has to join forces with the under-dog to bring about a solution. 6. Kenneth Boulding refers to the former as threat power (“do what I want or I will do what you do not want”). or enforce cooperation. but this can never be in the interests of the top-dog.e. confronting the top-dog if necessary. In asymmetric conflicts the structure is such that the top-dog always wins.

(1989). Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). Three Faces of Power. (1981).Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 27 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. K. (Chapter 1.) Boulding. . C. Mitchell. Cambridge: Polity Press.5-22. pp. Newbury Park. “Introduction to Conflict Resolution”. The Structure of International Conflict. London: Macmillan. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. CA: Sage.

a. True b. a. False 2. that is. power b. The positions that conflict parties hold refer to their: a. Conflicts only have one dimension of conflict. weapons 6. An example of a subjective dimension of conflict is: a. hostility c. needs c. recognition c. interests . Conflicts over access to security are about: a.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 28 LESSON 2 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. fears b. 4. values b. Briefly define the concept of conflict. underlying issues c. values d. either an objective dimension or a subjective dimension. An example of an objective dimension of conflict is: a. concrete demands 8. anger d. land b. positions d. fear d. List the three related elements of the conflict triangle. False 7. Conflict is always a negative process. jealousy 5. 3. True b.

symmetric d. hard power b. threat power c. Conflict that arise between dissimilar parties and involve issues of power are: a. attitudes. 7-d. 10-c . objective c. protracted b. integrative power d. 9-d. 6-False. asymmetric 10. 3-structures. coercive power Answer Key: 1-False. 4-a. What type of power is the most appropriate for conflict resolvers to use during their intervention efforts? a.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 29 9. behaviours. 5-c. 2-the pursuit of incompatible goals. 8-b.

Some words may fall under more than one category.Lesson 2/The Nature of Conflict 30 Exercise: The Good. Words with a negative connotation (e. destruction. death. opportunity. 2.g.. excitement. The three categories are: 1. hatred). tension. Consideration/Discussion: Did you list words from all three categories? Did you list more words in any particular category? If so. Method: Think of as many words as possible associated with the term CONFLICT. Belfast: Community Relations Council 1 .. Consider which of the categories below each word falls under.g. aggression. inevitable). balance.) Write them down on a piece of paper. Community Conflict Skills: A Handbook for Groupwork. richness).. the Bad and the Neutral1 Aim: To assist the student in understanding that conflict is an essential process in life. why? What would we lose in our lives if we did not have conflict? Adapted from Mari Fitzduff (1992).g. (“First Thoughts” for 5-10 minutes. with both desirable and undesirable consequences. creativity. Words with a positive connotation (e. Words that are relatively neutral (e. 3.

Resolution and Transformation Win-Win Outcomes Third Party Intervention Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution Conflict Resolution Training [Peacekeeping] involves the psychological change from an adversary to a pacific role. 4. This necessitates a full understanding of the causes of the conflict political. 3. Introduction Conflict Management. 6. Settlement. military and economic as well as the social and cultural environment. from confrontation to third party interposition. 2. and to advance the process of reconciliation. It demands a fair-minded and impartial approach while operating within an atmosphere of distrust and suspicion among the protagonists. to improve communications between the parties. 5. In peacekeeping there is no enemy: the objective is to avoid hostilities.LESSON 3 KEY CONCEPTS OF CONFLICT RESOLUTION 1. . often under difficult and provocative conditions.Canadian General Clayton Beattie .

all of which are defined here. conflict settlement. and encompasses a range of techniques from conciliation to mediation. Distinguish between win-lose. After studying the material contained in this lesson. The role of conflict resolution training to provide the necessary skills for these techniques is also discussed. lose-lose and win-win outcomes. Understand the key strategies for negotiation and mediation. Peacekeeping is considered as a form of third party intervention designed to assist conflict resolution. negotiation. Conflict resolution is distinguished from conflict management and conflict settlement because it is concerned with addressing the fundamental causes of conflicts and aims to produce solutions which are mutually acceptable to all conflict parties. Conflict resolution itself operates at a number of levels or tracks. Discuss the techniques and approaches for resolving conflict. . Consider how these conflict resolution techniques are relevant and useful to peacekeeping situations in the field. Apply some of the basic conflict resolution skills in their peacekeeping interactions and activities. and problem-solving. Describe the main concepts of third party intervention. conflict resolution and conflict transformation. the student will be able to: Differentiate between conflict management.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 32 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson provides an account of key terms and concepts used to define the processes of conflict resolution.

Introduction The aim of conflict resolution is not the elimination of conflict. Resolution and Transformation Many terms are frequently. Although a settlement is often the quickest solution to a difficult or violent situation. but the initial disappointment may be offset by the mutuality of the compromise. 2. Settlement. This requires a continuously evolving set of conceptual and practical tools to deal with conflict as and when it arises. Four significant approaches will be distinguished here. neither side may be able to achieve all of their goals.1 Conflict Management Conflict management.2 Conflict Settlement The settlement approach prescribes an outcome that is built on agreement reached by the conflicting parties through negotiation and bargaining. which involves compromise or concession from both sides. 2. Rather. The feelings of the parties are secondary to the issues.. Conflict Management. All parties (including the third party) to the bargaining process approach the goal of settlement with their own interests to be promoted or safeguarded and their own agendas to be addressed. its effectiveness is temporary because the underlying relationships and structures that have caused the conflict are not addressed. the aim of conflict resolution is to transform actual or potential violent conflict into peaceful (non-violent) processes of social and political change. Using this approach. in this definition.g. inducements and/or threats (hard power tactics) to compel the parties to agree to a compromise solution. It is also used to refer to the limitation. like the associated term “conflict regulation”. conflicts that have reached settlements are often re-opened . in the case of asymmetric conflicts where conflict may be required to change the unbalanced power structures). power-related issues of conflict. Formal negotiation and political bargaining are examples of this approach. This would be both impossible and sometimes undesirable (e. rather than the durable elimination of the causes of conflict. This approach emphasises the objective. A settlement. However.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 33 1. is often confusingly used as a generic term to cover the entire spectrum of positive efforts to affect conflicts in non-violent ways. their relationship is addressed only in so far as it is relevant to the bargaining process. including settlement and resolution. several of these terminological approaches have implications for the outcome of a conflict situation. 2. Third parties in settlement-type processes legitimately use pressure. used in the field of Conflict Resolution to describe the activities and processes which bring conflict to an end. In practice. mitigation and containment of conflict. suggests agreement over the conflict issues. and almost interchangeably.

The parties co-operate with each other to redefine their conflict and their relationship.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 34 later when feelings produce new issues or renewed dissatisfactions about old ones. . or when the third party's guarantee runs out. and which address the root cause of the conflict. They solve the conflict themselves by jointly finding their own solution.3 Conflict Resolution Conflict resolution is a more comprehensive approach based on mutual problem-sharing between the conflict parties. Also. objective issue-based disagreements may not be resolved if positive relationships develop. The primary objective of this approach is to achieve a “win-win outcome”. 2. The role of the third party is one of facilitation without coercion or the use of hard power persuasion. resolve the differences so as to achieve solutions that are not imposed. particularly relationships between parties. they engage in a process of information-sharing. becoming their own guarantors of the agreement. relationship-building. joint analysis and co-operation. resolution is difficult to achieve in practice. while it is a fundamental means of dealing with conflict. attitudes so they are no longer hostile. diagnosing its nature and applying appropriate methods in order to: diffuse the negative emotional energy involved. A resolution process is based on the needs of the primary parties to a particular conflict. The main differences between the settlement and resolution approaches to conflict are summarised in the Table 3-1. The term is used to refer both to the process (or the intention) to bring about these changes. and structures so they are no longer exploitative. This approach emphasises the subjective features of the conflict. changing behaviours so they are no longer violent. in which long-lasting (even permanent) solutions to the conflict are sought. and to the completion of the process. This is because the conflicting parties (especially in long-standing and/or violent conflict) are not open to the idea of close co-operation and because the practicalities of developing such a broad and deep solution are immense. enable the conflicting parties to understand and resolve their differences. rather than on the interests or assumptions of the “resolvers”. Rather than compromising or bargaining away their goals. This approach opposes traditional notions of power politics. However. The process of conflict resolution includes becoming aware of a conflict. Resolution of conflict implies that the deep-rooted sources of conflict are addressed. which have been agreed by all the key parties.

police. This is associated with the conflict settlement approach. underlying needs not important RESOLUTION (CO-OPERATION) Objective issues and subjective perceptions. Peacekeeping is in a unique position because it is associated with both conflict management styles: it is both a settlement and a resolution activity. For example. and the work of the political offices in facilitating talks between rival political . human rights and electoral monitoring.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 35 TABLE 3-1 SETTLEMENT (COMPROMISE) FOCUS AIM THIRD PARTY Objective issues. Peace enforcement is a form of imposed settlement by a powerful third party. However.1 Peacekeeping as Settlement and Resolution The range of peacekeeping options has been recognised as the international community's primary instrument of third party intervention and conflict management. long-term Remove causes of conflict Does not use coercion. the peace-enforcement operation (UNOSOM II) monitored a (temporary) cease-fire arrangement in order for other peacekeeping activities to take place. improves communication. UNTAG's information campaign associated with the elections and the wider settlement process. while a political settlement to the conflict is sought. in Namibia. Similarly. short-term Remove conflict Imposes solution. for example. This multidimensional form of peacekeeping can be seen as a strategy that is more closely related to conflict resolution. peacekeepers' activities in UNFICYP have been mostly directed toward the maintenance of a status quo situation. In the case of Somalia.3. policing. uses power/coercion. the humanitarian mission in Bosnia reflected a settlement strategy. it did not address the subjective issues of the conflict. and civilian personnel responsible for a wider range of tasks such as humanitarian assistance. obtain win-win solutions 2. social and economic rehabilitation and reconstruction. In Cyprus. nor did it advance co-operative relations between the conflict parties. while negotiations on partition took place in Geneva. Contemporary peacekeeping (or “peace support” as the US and UK militaries prefer to use) involves the coordinated presence of military. Traditional peacekeeping refers to the interposition of international armed forces to separate the belligerents and monitor a cease-fire.

while we use conflict resolution as a comprehensive term to encompass the variety of approaches and methods used to handle conflict non-violently at all levels in society.. In traditional peacekeeping. The peace that emerges will be deeply rooted and sustainable. promote and build on the resources and mechanisms within a given cultural setting for dealing with conflict. conflict transformation can yield rich insights. Transformation is also used to refer to a specific approach to violent conflict that focuses on the changes needed at many different levels of society in order to create long-term peace. Conflict transformation includes the process of Peace Building. relational and cultural dimensions of conflict resolution. where the focus is on settlement strategies (e. In multidimensional peacekeeping operations third party roles associated with resolution strategies are taken on explicitly (through strategic planning and by the very nature of the activities performed). transformation is linked to the idea of “Peace Building-from-below” (see Lesson 8). we use conflict transformation as a developmental term to indicate the deepest level of change in the conflict resolution process. The increased number of civilians participating in contemporary peacekeeping operations also means that more resolution roles are taken on. 2. which underpins the work of peacemaking and peacekeeping by addressing structural issues and the long-term relationships between conflictants. relationships.4 Conflict Transformation In recent years. This kind of activity is associated with the resolution approach.g. progressively removing or reducing the social and structural conditions from which the conflict and violence have arisen. which seeks to identify. such roles occur only by chance or through individual initiative. On the cultural level. rather than focusing narrowly on how to bring a violent conflict to a cease-fire or settlement. An emphasis on the transformative aspects of conflict helps us to understand the changes that occur in individuals. This approach aims to transform a conflict from one of violence and destruction into a constructive force which produces change. The contention is that “resolution” carries the connotation of bringing conflict to permanent conclusion. negating the possible social value of positively channeled conflict. As a descriptive and theoretical perspective. particularly with respect to asymmetric and protracted conflicts. . some analysts have used the term “conflict transformation” to refer to the longer-term and deeper structural.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 36 parties demonstrates attempts to improve communication and understanding between groups and to promote positive relationships. The difference between traditional and multidimensional peacekeeping with respect to third party activities is a matter of degree. maintenance of cease-fires). Thus. cultures and nations as a result of the experiences of violent conflict. It focuses on the dynamic processes through which conflict becomes violent.

Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 37 3. When this becomes clear to the parties often regrettably late there is a strong motive based on self-interest for moving towards other outcomes. treating conflicts between parties with long-term relationships (e. outcome in which both parties gain from the conflict situation. The aim is to move the parties from a negative nonzero-sum perspective towards a positive nonzero-sum (greater-than-zero sum). However. the parties may impose such massive costs on each other that all of the conflictants end worse off than they would have been had another strategy been adopted. there is a much more common outcome in violent conflicts: negative nonzero-sum (less-than-zero-sum). Win-Win Outcomes Parties to conflicts frequently see their interests as diametrically opposed. or compromise (the s s parties split their difference). At the deepest level. The possible outcomes are seen to be zero-sum or win-lose (one' gain is the other' loss).. or both parties lose. DIAGRAM 3-1 Possible Outcomes of Conflict Win-Win Power/ Authority Creative Conflict Resolution Competition Co-operation Confrontation Rules Determine Winners/Losers Win-Lose Taking account of the future relationship is one way out of the trap of win-lose thinking. If neither party is able to impose an outcome or is prepared to compromise.g. family . The task of conflict resolution is to assist parties who perceive their situation as zero-sum to re-perceive it as a nonzero-sum situation. or win-win. in which both parties may lose or win. such as compromise or win-win.

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members, communities, or neighbouring states) as win-lose situations is problematic: if conflicts are “resolved” at the expense of one of the parties, the issues are likely to resurface, creating further conflict. In complex conflict situations, the parties will typically have different values or opinions regarding the relative importance of each issue, predictions about future gains, the importance of symbolic acts and so forth. These differences can be leveraged so that the solution has a high relative value for each party, while minimising painful compromises or trade-offs. For conflict settlements to be durable, they must have integrative, win-win outcomes so that the interests and needs of the individuals or groups in conflict are recognised and mutually satisfied.

4. Third Party Intervention
Where two parties to a conflict are reacting to another' actions, it is easy for a spiral of s hostility and escalation to develop. Third party intervention occurs when an impartial party an individual, institution or nation who is not identified directly or indirectly with any of the parties or interests to the conflict intentionally enters the conflict situation with the objective of breaking into this conflict spiral to regulate or end its destructive course. The entry of a third party changes the conflict structure and allows for a different pattern of communication to develop. The third party is able to reflect back the messages, attitudes and behaviours of the conflictants, with the aim of producing a co-operative environment for constructive conflict resolution and win-win outcomes. A third party has no stake or immediate interest in the conflict into which it intervenes. However, while third party intervention can be non-coercive or non-binding, using soft power tactics. It can also be coercive or binding, using hard power tactics. The former has been described as an intermediary, with no power to coerce; the latter has been referred to as an intervenor, with some power to coerce. There are several essential features of or conditions for effective non-coercive third party intervention: 1. Because it is non-coercive and voluntary; the conflict parties must be willing to enter into some form of negotiation or dialogue. 2. There must be a forum available that is agreeable to the parties involved (i.e., the right place with the right conditions). 3. The third party must be credible (i.e., the third party must have legitimate standing with the parties to allow him/her to assist in the conflict). 4. The process is impartial: it sees the conflicting demands of the parties from an impartial position. (It is not impartial in the sense that a third party whether an individual, a non-governmental agency, or a peacekeeping mission does have particular values and goals which are the basis for its work.) 5. It attempts resolution (although this does not exclude attempts at settlement). 6. It changes the dynamics of the conflict situation.

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4.1

Peacekeeping as a Form of Third Party Intervention

Peacekeeping, itself, is an instrument of third party intervention at both the macro- and micro-levels of conflict intervention. At the macro-level, peacekeeping is part of a broadly constituted conflict resolution process: it aims to prevent, contain, resolve or transform conflict through the use of an internationally organised and directed third party (comprised of military, police and civilian personnel). At the micro-level, both military and civilian personnel act as third parties on the ground in a mission: they seek to reduce violence by segregating the conflict parties, then they work to restore trust, confidence and communication. 4.2 Third Party Roles

There are several different third party roles available. Different roles may be required for different levels of conflict, or depending on the nature and relative power of the conflict parties. They are illustrated in Diagram 3-2. Roles for Conflict Settlement The conciliator provides a communication channel between the parties and brings the parties together for negotiation, particularly in situations where the parties are unable, unwilling or unprepared to meet. The conciliator may: (a) facilitate exchange, (b) suggest possible solutions, and (c) assist the parties in reaching an agreement. A third party can enter into negotiations with one or all of the parties to a conflict. Peacekeepers are often involved in this activity at the micro-level, for example, when negotiating with a particular party over an issue like freedom of movement. Conciliation can also help redress the power imbalance between parties. The enforcer (including arbitrators, judges, police, and peace enforcers) has formal power to sanction either or all of the parties. The enforcer coerces parties to focus on objective or resource-based issues and to achieve a compromise. Roles for Conflict Resolution The most widely used form of third party is the mediator. The mediator is expected to be an outsider, someone who is impartial (although this is currently a matter of cultural debate), and who does not have the formal power to sanction the parties. The parties to the conflict allow the mediator into the conflict to help facilitate the negotiation process. The mediator may bring the parties together or shuttle between the parties (a “go-between”) to assist them in reaching mutually satisfactory outcomes. The facilitator assists the parties in moving toward problem-solving processes and creative resolution of the conflict. A team of facilitators brings representatives of the parties together in a neutral environment and works with them to improve communication, identify underlying relationship issues, build trust and search for integrative outcomes. At

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the same time, the team establishes a framework that will enable the conflict parties to deal with problems in the future in a positive non-destructive way. DIAGRAM 3-2

4.3

Track 1, Track 2, and Track 3 Interventions

Third party intervention involves different kinds of agencies (international organisations, state governments, non-government organisations, and official and unofficial individuals); addresses different groups (state governments, party leaders and elites, local leaders and organisations); and varies in form, duration and purpose. These differences can be conceptualised as Track 1, Track 2, Track 3 and Multi-track intervention. Track 1 intervention involves official governmental or inter-governmental representatives (e.g., from the UN, international and regional organisations or international financial institutions) working with the top leaders and other elite parties (e.g., warlords, faction leaders) from the conflict. They may use negotiation, good offices, mediation, peacekeeping and “carrots and sticks” (hard power tactics) to seek or force an outcome, often along the win-lose or bargaining line. Track 2 intervention, in contrast, involves unofficial intervenors who do not have the “carrots and sticks”. As powerless and non-coercive third parties, they work with the parties to facilitate agreements, to encourage the parties to see their situation along the lose-lose or win-win lines, and to find mutually satisfactory outcomes. They include international non-government organisations, religious organisations, private businesses, and academics working with middle-level leaders.

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There has been a shift from seeing third party intervention as the responsibility of external individuals and agencies towards accepting the important role of internal third parties. Peacemaking activities by local individuals and agencies are known as Track 3 interventions. Instead of outsiders addressing conflicts through short-term efforts, the emphasis is on building capacity within societies to manage conflict long-term. This means supporting local peace constituencies, resources and actors, developing local institutions, and employing the socially and culturally appropriate approaches to resolving conflict in a given setting (see Lessons 8 and 9). Table 3-2 compares the three tracks. TABLE 3-2 TRACK 1 UN, regional organisations (e.g., OAU, OSCE, OAS), international financial institutions (e.g., World Bank) Key political or military leaders, elites, warlords, faction leaders TRACK 2 International NGOs, religious bodies (e.g., Quakers, churches), multi-religious bodies, private businesses, academics Middle-level leaders from country’s business, religious, education and other communities TRACK 3 Local leaders, respected community elders, community organisations

THIRD PARTIES

CONFLICT PARTIES

Local leaders and groups

TECHNIQUES

Negotiation, peacekeeping, mediation with muscle

Good offices, conciliation, pure mediation, problemsolving Integrative and exchange

Creation of local peace constituencies, building social cohesion Integrative and exchange

POWER

Exchange and threat

Multi-track intervention refers to a complementary range of third party interventions. By integrating Track 1, Track 2 and Track 3 third party interventions, and addressing top-level elites and local grassroots simultaneously (i.e., operating at the structural-constitutional and relational-community levels), there is more likely to be a sustained commitment to transforming the conflict in question. Diagram 3-3 illustrates the multi-track approach.

The main aims of conciliation are to help identify the major issues of contention.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 42 DIAGRAM 3-3 5. adjudication. It also refers to the more minimalist role of providing good offices which enable conflict parties to get together to recognise each other's interests and needs. the parties' personalities. Techniques and Approaches to Conflict Resolution There are a variety of techniques employed within the field of Conflict Resolution to manage and resolve conflict at all levels of social interaction. the power or resources the parties possesses. In practice. consultation. to lower tensions between parties and to move the parties closer to direct interaction. . good offices. facilitation. Conciliation involves a pacification process and gentle persuasion which aims to restore communication so that negotiation. 5. mediation or consultation can take place. Conciliation represents the first occasion that parties to the conflict require the intervention of a third party.1 Conciliation Conciliation refers to non-coercive intermediary efforts to encourage the parties to move towards negotiations. Possible activities for third parties include: mediation. and the complexity of the conflict. This section examines the most important techniques available to peacekeeping actors. and enquiry/fact-finding. the most appropriate ways to approach a particular conflict will vary according to the level on which it occurs. The most prominent provider of good offices is the United Nations Secretary General. their perspectives on the future. negotiation. arbitration. the work of Adam Curle in the Nigerian conflict of 1967-70). the strength of the parties' feelings. conciliation. The Quaker model of mediating between warring parties is a clear example of conciliation (for example.

Negotiation is based on a search for options. Use objective criteria. Getting to Yes. 2 R. friends. During the negotiation process. Negotiation occurs on both formal (e. suggests that effective negotiations should: Produce agreements that satisfy the legitimate interests of all parties directly involved. Although negotiations focus on issues. Be efficient.2 Negotiation Negotiation is a general term for the process that provides the conflict parties with an opportunity to directly exchange information and commitments through which they will resolve their perceived difference of interests. and (4) thinking that solving the problem is the other's problem. It may make use of a third party who conducts the proceedings. for evaluation. Shared interests lie latent in every negotiation (e. move away from compromised towards integrative agreements). between trade representatives. London: Hutchinson. Patton) (1981). (2) searching for a single answer. Trust is therefore the key. superordinate goals. or who may assist in deadlock-breaking.g. which applies to both parties. it enhances relationships. between colleagues.. and the basic parameters of the process may need to be adapted.g. The latter suggests processes through which everyday decisions are made. see Lesson 1). Invent creative options for mutual gain (i. not on positions. There are four major obstacles that inhibit this search: (1) premature judgement. or who acts as a central feature of the negotiation process.g..Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 43 5. Increased trust generates communication and dialogue. Principled negotiation is based on four basic tenets: Separate the people from the problem (the conflict is not one of personalities). their success depends on people.. Fisher and W. between diplomats) and informal levels (e. Improve the relationship between the parties. (3) assumption of a fixed pie. Focus on interests. and family members). goals and targets may change. Another important element of negotiation is flexibility: the process needs to be flexible enough to cope with unforeseen circumstances. . The concept of principled negotiation2 (developed by the Harvard Negotiation Project. Conflict parties will not exchange information and promises with parties they do not trust. opportunities in the future for co-operation and mutual benefit)..e. Ury (with B.

Stage 4: Bargaining Work through each proposal. Clarify what all parties want and how they intend to achieve their goals. seek partial agreement or areas of consensus. with both parties winning. Focus on the underlying interests.g. Stage 3: Generating Proposals Table all proposals. as well as a setting that is culturally appropriate. interests. Establish the venue. Stage 2: Discussions Each party states their position. be problem-oriented rather than solution-oriented. Identify other individuals of influence (e. all sides lose. What is acceptable to all parties? What is not acceptable? Work with the other parties to identify common ground on which to build meaningful dialogue. accessible. it may become a win-lose situation. If full agreement is not possible. local leader) who could be crucial in solving the problem. Establish effective communication with all parties involved. Spend time establishing what the problem is. Seek opportunities to develop options for mutual gain. There are several stages in a negotiating process: Stage 1: Preparation Conduct a fact-finding mission to establish who is involved and what the main issues are. If one party moves too much without reciprocation. there may be a basis for an agreement – a compromise. Ensure that all parties are willing to engage in the negotiation process. If all sides are prepared to move.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 44 Guidelines for Negotiation All parties must make realistic offers to start the process in motion. Agree on the basic rules and procedures and decide on the timeframes. At this stage. Consider the assistance of a third party. . If only one party is prepared to move. if there is no movement on any sides. there may be nothing left to bargain with. as well as concerns or fears.. senior commander. and secure for all sides. and needs. Find a neutral site acceptable.

and the relationship between them. understanding of the issues. each conflict party needs to: Develop a supportive climate for discussions to take place. (What is the maximum to go for? What is the minimum to accept? What is their ideal solution? What would be a realistic solution?) Understand and abide by some basic rules. . which is most often associated with unofficial mediation (Track 2). Be committed to finding and keeping any agreement. Listen to the other parties.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 45 Stage 5: Reaching an Agreement Summarise what has taken place and what has been agreed. Be prepared to consider new information and ideas. The mediator' role is to facilitate direct negotiation on the s substantive issues. verbal and non-verbal behaviour). It is a voluntary process in which the parties retain control over the outcome and the mediator merely acts as an impartial facilitator of the process of communication. If desirable and appropriate. who may be more effective in getting the conflict parties to re-examine their positions. If necessary. agreements and disagreements for future reference. Promote confidence-building and be prepared to trust the others involved.3 Mediation An extension of the negotiation process is mediation. 5. Be attuned to cultural differences (e. from interpersonal to international. rather than on the inter-party relationship. power mediation (or “mediation with muscle”) employs a powerful third party who uses incentives and punishments (“carrots and sticks”) to persuade the parties to yield inflexible positions and move towards agreement. record all accomplishments. State the facts as they see them. decide a time and place for further negotiation or follow-up. Mediation involves the intervention of a third party. unlike a judge or arbitrator. including other third parties. with the aim of producing a lasting settlement. Give up what is easy for them in return for what is of value. (What are their positions and underlying issues?) Be willing to understand. which also occurs on many different levels. In order to negotiate effectively. interests and needs.g. Express their feelings. Movement is based on the power relations between the mediator and each party. This is soft mediation or “pure mediation”. has no power outside the mediation situation and cannot make or impose binding decisions. Establish what their targets are. Move away from the past (it cannot be changed) and consider the opportunities to influence the future. The mediator is concerned with all parties. Building on pure mediation.. cultural approaches to negotiation. The mediator.

in the Canadian sector in Croatia. referring to the relationship between mediators and those with whom they are dealing with. Curle (1986). However. Summarise concisely the essence of each party' positions. mediators should move from one conflict party to the other in an effort to see if there is common ground for a meeting. there are four elements of good practice. Mediators s should aim to: Provide information on the facts so that conflict parties are not misled by rumour. What mediators can do in their efforts to resolve conflict depend on who they are and the resources they bring. A Model for Mediation According to Curle' model of mediation3. s Encourage the conflict parties to agree to a meeting to work out their differences. prejudice. and providing emergency medical treatment and medical evacuation have been used as incentives to gain co-operation from local civilian and military authorities. Engage in active mediation: mediators help the conflict parties to see possibilities for a solution that they might not otherwise have perceived. There are four main stages that the mediation process should go through. . Convey an understanding of and respect for each party. In the shuttle mediation. as well as who the parties are. In the Middle: Non-Official Mediation in Violent Situations. Develop rapport and trust with all parties. Before engaging in face-to-face negotiation. the mediator can move to the face-to-face mediation session. Identify areas of common interest and possible compromise. cultural). or misunderstanding Build. Explore the initial ideas of what each party wants. and the nature of their interaction. interests and needs. Befriend. remember that one of the keys to conflict resolution is flexibility. Oxford: Berg. adapt the process as required for the particular context and circumstances (especially.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 46 This form of mediation is often associated with official mediation (Track 1). If the shuttle is successful. What are the issues? Who is involved? What is the background/history of the issue(s)? What are the cultural issues? Explain what mediation is about and create a sympathetic and supportive environment. the context and stakes of the conflict. mediators should try to: Find out about the situation. For example. 3 A. therefore. civil projects such s rebuilding roads. restoring electrical power. maintain and improve communications between the mediators and the protagonists to the conflict.

summarise to check for accuracy. Summarise the parties' perspectives (issues. Encourage the parties to agree on a course of action and to discuss what to do if problems re-emerge. Engage the parties in setting the agenda (i. Apply “win-win” negotiating principles by encouraging the discussion of both parties' interests and concerns and seeking multiple options for solving the problems of both parties. no interrupting). goals). If a comprehensive agreement is not possible. Clarify the roles (mediators' participants' and ).Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 47 Stage 1: Introducing the Mediation Process Welcome the parties and thank them for coming. Arrange a follow-up. clarify and ensure understanding of any new information shared. determine whether a partial agreement can be reached. Encourage a move toward resolution. Assist parties to identify the core issues and concerns. Stage 2: Identifying Issues Request an opening statement from each party. Encourage problem-solving and guide them towards an agreement that incorporates the needs of both parties. If appropriate and desirable.e. which issues to deal with first). .. Resolutions should be implemented and monitored as soon as possible. positions. concerns. Develop areas of potential movement. Stage 3: Problem-Solving Exchange Ensure that each party understands what the other has said and how the other feels.g. Describe the process.. Clarify each area of agreement and set it to one side. Get an agreement that these (as well as any others) are the key issues. Establish ground rules (e. interests. a written memorandum of consensus can be signed by each party. needs. Assist in the evaluation of the options. noting areas of consensus and disagreement. Stage 4: Building Agreement Invite the parties to make proposals and encourage them to generate a range of options.

and it provides options for dealing with the conflict changing destructive processes or preventing further damaging conflict from arising. mediation and problem-solving. Problem-solving usually takes place in an informal.. including communication. and non-governmental personnel. The goal is to reconceptualise their relationships and situation in order to find creative. Training is the most important way to develop or improve the skills. win-win outcomes. that will be useful for managing and resolving conflict constructively. It can help peacekeeping participants to become more effective third parties in the field by offering a safe environment to learn and to practice new skills. Conflict Resolution Training Co-operative conflict resolution depends upon a certain set of skills. and regulating the interaction. That is. i. it recognises that these changes must be transferred and integrated into policy formulation and decision-making at the political level for conflict to be influenced.. changed perceptions and improved attitudes). The third party functions include: inducing positive motivation. The more influential and representative the individual participants in the workshops are. increased understanding. negotiation. non-commital. to improved relationships between the conflict parties. Although problem-solving focuses on changing individuals attitudes and behaviour. the “other' perspective”. The objective ranges from education (i. It also allows time for reflection on the application of the newly acquired skills and concepts. improving communication. to the generation of creative solutions (or a combination of these aspects). the greater the potential impact on the political process. including the other' interests and needs. It can also help participants to view the conflict from another perspective. rather than to substitute them. The method is based on social-psychological assumptions about international conflict. diagnosing the conflict.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 48 5.e. 6. Conflict resolution training has been increasingly offered to diplomats and other official actors. The primary aim of training is education: to learn and apply new skills and knowledge. Training assists participants to understand the conflict dynamics. Participants are influential.e. The meetings are seen to contribute to the official-level negotiations. conflict is a mix of objective interests and subjective factors and both need to be addressed by the process. low-risk. to shared understandings about the sources and nature of the conflict. military and civilian peacekeepers. . figures from the conflict communities. For participants who are members of a community engaged in conflict. s s Training can be an empowering process for individuals and groups affected by violent conflict. training becomes an intervention in itself. neutral and confidential workshop format facilitated by a skilled and impartial team of scholar-practitioners who organise and manage the discussions.4 Problem-Solving Facilitated problem-solving (or third party consultation) is an unofficial third-party intervention technique in which conflict parties are invited to participate in jointly analysing their conflict. but non-official.

or negotiating with other peacekeeping agencies. those related to establishing creative group processes and group decision-making strategies. peacekeepers.e.1 Core Skills for Conflict Resolvers The skills of conflict resolution are transferable skills and can be adapted and cultivated as a foundation for use in a variety of contexts.1 Conflict Styles To learn the skills associated with the various conflict resolution techniques. those related to developing substantive knowledge of the issues around the conflict. role-plays and simulations). For peacekeeping actors. 6. and (2) elicitive approaches (i. including the history and cultural dimensions.. including: in the general interaction of family and friendship groups (interpersonally). buildings.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 49 The most effective training uses: (1) interactive learning approaches (e. The style one chooses to use in a conflict should be situational (including . problem-solving attitude among the conflict parties.1. across cultures and between states to enable a greater degree of global awareness of the potential of conflict resolution to deal with differences through official or unofficial channels. drawing upon the participants' own experiences and perspectives in order to relate the new material to the skills and knowledge they already have. As third parties in peacekeeping environments. mediating between hostile clans. e. 6. you may be negotiating for rights of passage or use of facilities. including trust. participatory methods including small group discussions and exercises. the first step is to understand how one behaves in conflict situations. Different people use different strategies for managing conflict. which can be acquired through training and developed through ongoing practice: those related to establishing an effective working relationship with others (conflict parties as well as other individuals and groups the participant may come into contact with. those related to establishing a co-operative.g. or creating training programmes from the knowledge and resources available within the group). there is a basic set of skills involved in the constructive resolution of conflict. in various professions and organisations where the positive management of human relationships has a high priority. internationally. humanitarian personnel). and other services. For example. case study analyses.g. in culturally divided societies and by agencies (humanitarian/peacekeeping) working to alleviate the effects of violence in such societies when division has escalated to hostility. military and civilian actors will frequently find themselves in situations within and between their own agencies and between themselves and local populations that require effective negotiation and/or mediation strategies. negotiating with local leaders to determine how to equitably distribute relief supplies. credibility and communication...

do you tend to avoid conflict in order to preserve relationships. of course. understanding and respecting the styles of others. how important the relationship is). to identify a primary personal mode of dealing with conflict. an on-going task for conflict resolvers. withdraw from conflict. dominate the other parties. Consideration/Discussion: What is your style? For example. think about how you usually respond to conflict. Method: On your own or with a partner. It is the route to understanding and reaching agreement. including the strategies you may adopt to manage and resolve conflict. is your style a mixture? If your style is a mixture. under what circumstances might you use one style or another? What are the advantages/disadvantages of your style? What happens when you use your style in situations where the other parties have very different styles? How does your style compare to the characteristics of good mediation/negotiation practise? How can you improve your style? 6. It is possible. Communication is the exchange of meaning the giving and receiving of feelings. ideas or beliefs through verbal and non-verbal means. opinions.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 50 how important personal goals are. compete over the issues to “win” the conflict. problem-solve? Or. Self-reflection is. To consider the importance of conflict management styles for negotiators and mediators.1. The second step is. Just as conflict management styles are learned. Once communication is improved both the objective and subjective dimensions of conflict are easier to deal with. compromise on the issues to achieve some goals. confront the issues/parties. developed over time through experiences (particularly cultural ones). Exercise: Evaluating Personal Conflict Management Styles Aims: To allow the student to think about his/her own conflict behaviour and identify common patterns. which may be very different from one's own. therefore. they can be changed by learning new and more effective ways. therefore it is important to consider the cultural communication patterns and rules. (Note that most communication takes place within cultural contexts. however.2 Communication Skills The most important skill for acting constructively in conflict situations is effective communication.) The communication skills that are important for conflict resolution are divided into two groups: verbal and non-verbal. it can prevent unnecessary conflict from arising. . and it can prevent an existing conflict from escalating.

g.g.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 51 VERBAL Active Listening Empathy Questioning Styles Reflection Re-phrasing Explaining Summarising NON-VERBAL Body Posture Gestures (e. using “open questions” (e. to both the verbal and non-verbal cues. Could you tell me more about it ?. including both factual content and feelings expressed by the speaker. which includes many of the other elements of good communication. the most important is active listening (also referred to as reflective or deep listening). (What are the main points or ideas?) Listen for feelings and emotions and acknowledge those that you recognise. do not expect them to move into yours. . head nodding) Eye Contact Physical Space Touch Presence of Others Attentive (Interested) Silence Of these. verbal and non-verbal. It is an essential skill for any negotiation or mediation process. display open.. means listening to the whole person. Direct attention outward towards the speaker. and opens up new possibilities. feelings and experiences. use similar language.g. to see it through new lenses. attentive non-verbal behaviour (e. space and confidence to express his/her thoughts. summarise in your own words what the speaker has said. How was that for you ?). diffuses tension and anger. practice “unconditional positive regard”: do not let prejudices and stereotypes influence your listening and do not filter what you hear to fit in with your worldview (cultural assumptions). whilst being inwardly receptive. move into their domain. (What are the fears and concerns expressed by the speaker?) Encourage the speaker to continue and to explain in some detail. arms and legs are not tightly crossed). Display empathy and openness empower the speaker by being fully present. Active listening: is much more than “passive” listening.. Reframe hostile communication to find a new way of looking at the situation. and then letting the other know that he or she is being heard and understood. Do not fiddle with objects like pens and paper. rather than “closed questions” (e.g. The active listener should: Listen for the content of what is being said. gives the speaker time. Be patient with the speaker. creates trust. When did it happen ? Where did you hear that ?). allows the listener to fully hear and understand. At appropriate times.

“Did you say” Empathy: “We can understand why you are worried by this”. open body language Checking: “Am I right in thinking you said”.g. The listener must do all that s/he can not to listen to you (i. “That sounds important to you”. To practice active listening and to experience what it is like to be fully listened to and understood. so that you become the active listener. this time the listener must do all s/he can to actively listen. “I see”. “You seem to be angry about” Clarification: “I am not sure I understand”.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 52 Active Listening Skills Encouraging: “Tell us some more”. Think of a topic (e. Method: Find someone to work with (or try elements of this exercise the next time you are engaged in a discussion with someone). reverse the roles: you are now the bad listener.. eye contact. Next. to be a bad listener). “Could you explain what happened?” Acknowledging: Verbal: “I understand”.e. Switch the roles again. “I think this situation has been very difficult for you” Reflecting: “You are upset? What particularly is upsetting you?” Summarising: “There seems to be several important issues here” Exercise: Bad and Good Listening Aims: To experience what it is like not to be listened to. Nonverbal: nodding. Consideration/Discussion: How did it feel not to be listened to? What did it feel like not to listen to somebody? What verbal and non-verbal means were used not to listen? How did it feel (as a speaker) to be really listened to? What did it feel like to fully and actively listen to someone? What verbal and non-verbal means were used to show that you were listening? . using both verbal and non-verbal means. “OK”. using both verbal and non-verbal cues. your concerns about working in areas of conflict) and talk about it for a few minutes. Switch the roles again..

(1998). M. Chapter 6. "Peacekeeping Doctrine and Conflict Resolution Techniques". Harris.59-120). pp. (Chapter 1. "Negotiation Processes". For good accounts of conflict resolution techniques played out by peacekeeping actors in the field. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. see: Hollingsworth. Merry Christmans Mr. pp. Stockholm: International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) (especially. pp. Democracy and Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for Negotiators. London: The Harvill Press.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 53 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. (His account of Bosnia during his time in charge of the British Command Area of UNPROFOR) . Chapter 3. L. B.) (1998). 22(2): 187-210. "Introduction to Conflict Resolution". Reilly (eds. Last. M. (His account of experiences in Bosnia as a UNHCR representative) Rose. C. "Mediation and Third Party Intervention". Broken Lives: A Personal View of the Bosnian Conflict. (His account as Commander of the UN Protection Force in Bosnia) Stewart. P. (1996). Larry. and B. D. Nupen and P. Cambridge: Polity Press. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). (1995/96). Armed Forces & Society. D. (1993).5-22. Fighting for Peace: Bosnia 1994. London: Mandarin. Bloomfield. London: Harper Collins.158-162) Harris.

Track 1? b. UNOSOM b. a voluntary process 6. compromised solutions achieved through negotiation and bargaining b. all of the above 3. UNMIH c. UNFICYP d. achieving win-win outcomes c. partial c. UNIFIL 5. an imposed process b. ONUSAL 4. UNTAG c. Conflict resolution approaches aim to: a. ONUC d. Conflict settlement processes are based on: a. UNTAG b. remove the causes of conflict b. Who are the third parties involved in the following intervention approaches: a. improve communication and co-operation d. Which of the peacekeeping operations below is an example of conflict settlement? a. achieve win-win outcomes c. Track 3? . Which of the peacekeeping operations below is an example of conflict resolution? a. long-term structural and relational change 2. Non-coercive third party intervention is: a. mutual problem-solving d.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 54 LESSON 3 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. binding d. Track 2? c.

10-c . The aim of conflict-resolution training is: a. warlords d.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 55 7. none of the above 10. 5-d. 4-b. active listening d. official mediation 8. The most important element of communication is: a. to learn new skills and knowledge b. 3-c. c: local individuals and organisations. 9-d. influential community representatives c. unofficial. 8-b. to apply skills and knowledge to specific situations c. to reflect on one's own conflict and conflict resolution experiences d. judicial hearings b. speaking b. 6-a: official government/inter-government representatives. b: unofficial representatives of non-governmental organisations. 2-d. Who represents the conflict parties in problem-solving workshops? a. questioning c. official government leaders b. 7-b. representatives from outside the conflict 9. mediation with muscle d. timing Answer Key: 1-a. Track 2 intervention is associated with: a. pure mediation c. all of the above e.

just outside the village. As darkness falls. you assumed this would be the final stop. with few violations. the area has been relatively quiet. the other side has interpreted this act as preparation for an attack. Firstly. you are stopped at a roadblock by a group of heavily armed and aggressive militia who refuse to give you access to the village. Method: Below you will find a series of scenarios. Following each scenario there are several questions asking you to consider what you would do in the situation. (You may wish to find other individuals to participate as role-players. what are the possible outcomes? Are there other conflict resolution scenarios that might arise from this one? Scenario 2 You are a representative of an international aid agency in charge of a small humanitarian aid convoy. secondly. this act clearly violates the cease-fire agreement. keeping in mind the tool-box of conflict resolution techniques you have acquired in this Lesson. Today. At the last checkpoint you were inspected to ensure that your vehicles contained no weapons or ammunition.) There is a debrief key at the end. Naturally. You are delivering food and medical supplies to a besieged village of unarmed civilians. However. What should you do in this situation? What strategies for dealing with (potential) conflict can you employ? Who might you involve in your approach? Based on your options. They claim that you have no approval to proceed and you must turn back. you learn that heavy weapons have been displayed close to the line by one side. the display may provide justification for similar defensive build-ups by the other side. What is your response? What conflict resolution technique would you use and why? . Your route has already been changed twice and you have been delayed at several checkpoints. Scenario 1 You are a military peacekeeper monitoring a 20-kilometre cease-fire line along an area of difficult terrain.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 56 Exercise: Conflict Resolution Skills in Peacekeeping Practice Aim: To give the student the opportunity to consider situations in peacekeeping environments that may require the use of conflict resolution skills and techniques. allowing you to practise your conflict resolution skills. you are concerned. Read each scenario. This situation could easily escalate. Except for occasional sniper-fire from both sides. They also accuse you of aiding the enemy and ignoring their own starving people. The warring factions agreed to withdraw all heavy weapons from the area.

How would you react to this situation? What conflict resolution options do you have? How would you go about implementing your strategy? What is the likely response of the conflict parties? What are the possible outcomes? Debrief: You have probably considered a range of approaches in response to the scenarios above. By ensuring that the weapons build-up is not an indication of future attack through information-gathering/passing. it may reduce further escalation of the conflict. Scenario 3 You are a civilian peacekeeper working with the UN in Kosovo.Lesson 3/Key Concepts of Conflict Resolution 57 Would you use hard power or soft power strategies? Who would you involve in the process? List the steps you would take in your chosen approach. In Scenario 2. Although there are no “correct” answers. we can suggest the most applicable conflict resolution techniques that could be used in these situations. which prevailed until the NATO attacks and the withdrawal of Serb military forces. . to carry information from one party to another. the most likely strategy would be to engage in negotiation. This scenario is particularly useful to role-play. In Scenario 3. you may wish to volunteer to mediate between the groups to generate options to resolve this particular conflict situation. to build trust and to discover common grounds from which to find a mutually satisfying agreement. Albanians were effectively excluded from the Medical Faculty. The University is presently closed but it will open soon. You have arrived at the University of Pristina to explore the possibility of using University offices for the work of your group in drawing up the Civil Registry. They are aware that under the period of Serb domination. While you are there you meet a small group of Serb students who are fearful that they will not be allowed back into the Medical Faculty when the University re-opens. In Scenario 1. under what they suspect will be an Albanian-dominated University Administration. This means that there is not much likelihood that there will be any space for Serbs for a number of years if at all! Both groups feel very strongly about this and have threatened to block your access to the building unless you listen to them. priority must be given to all those Albanians who were previously excluded. it would be useful for you to act as a go-between. A group of the Albanian students also want to speak to you because they are equally determined that when the Faculty re-opens.

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local and international levels. rooted in ideas of human identity and often expressed with frightening intensity. Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict Conflict Types Theories of Conflict Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict Increasingly. in Resolving Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for Negotiators . 2. 6. Today' predominant pattern of conflict is proving resistant to the s available and accepted tools of conflict management. . internal conflict. 5. is the major threat to stability and peace at the individual. 4.David Bloomfield. Introduction Defining Major Contemporary Conflicts Trends.LESSON 4 CONTEMPORARY CONFLICT DYNAMICS 1. 3.

Understand the trends. After studying the material contained in this lesson. Understand the concept of protracted social conflict (PSC). and the types or categories into which conflicts can be grouped. such as where they are located. An explanation of the term “protracted social conflict” is provided to provide an understanding of the outbreak of civil wars. . Analysis involves the understanding of changing patterns of conflict. the student will be able to: Define the nature of contemporary conflict. Theories which explain the occurrence of conflicts are discussed. Discuss the sources of conflict.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 60 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson provides a guide to the ways in which contemporary conflicts can be analysed Good Conflict analysis is a vital part of any successful process of conflict resolution. Distinguish between the key theories of conflict. Distinguish between the types of conflict. what trends and forces seem to explain causes. distribution and costs of contemporary conflict.

It also looks at the way in which major armed conflict has been analysed within the Conflict Resolution tradition. While these terms can be used interchangeably. from interpersonal conflict through to international conflict. each requires some qualification. This lesson. the international system is affected. “internal conflicts” often have external causes and attract outside interventions. This included traditional peacekeeping which consisted of a “thin blue line”: it focused narrowly on conflict containment. . 3. new wars. the study of conflict focused on interstate conflict. a number of patterns have emerged. Conflict Resolution analysts have traditionally included all levels of conflict. and all stages of conflict escalation and de-escalation. as well as varying expressions used by humanitarian and development NGOs and international agencies. Regional conflicts and civil wars were seen as a reflection of the United States-Soviet Union crisis and they were carefully managed and contained by the bi-polar system. monitoring borders and buffer zones after cease-fires were agreed to. Defining Contemporary Conflicts There are many different terms currently used to describe contemporary conflicts in the international community. During this period. ranging from domestic conflict situations that threaten to become militarised beyond the control of domestic civil police.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 61 1. and violence is directed not only against civilian populations but also against hospitals. is concerned with actual or potentially violent conflicts. Trends. This poses the hardest of challenges to contemporary peacekeeping operations because often in these internal wars there is little or no distinction between soldiers and civilians. conflict resolution efforts were aimed at maintaining international peace and security between states. ethnic conflicts. schools. small wars. To fully understand the nature of contemporary peacekeeping. through to full-scale interstate war. From the Conflict Resolution community the terms deeply-rooted conflict. 2. Introduction The previous Lessons have outlined some of the basic concepts of conflict resolution. when states collapse.1 Trends Although identifying the significant trends in contemporary conflict is not an exact science. civil wars. intractible conflict and protracted social conflict have evolved – the latter directing attention to the internal or domestic causes of many contemporary conflicts. Distribution and Costs of Contemporary Conflict 3. it is useful to examine recent conflict patterns and to consider how these trends have influenced peacekeeping practice. For example. however. Throughout the Cold War. refugee centres and cultural sites. This Lesson identifies the conflicts that are relevant to the study of conflict resolution and peacekeeping. including complex human emergencies and complex political emergencies. including internal conflicts.

one major trend shows through in almost all studies: a decline in the number of interstate wars. P. “Armed Conflict at the End of the Cold War. The regional effects are both outwards (“spill-over”. Liberia and Somalia). 1 .2 Distribution With the ending of the Cold War. including those at Uppsala University in Sweden. Sollenberg (1995). Sollenberg (1997). This includes: the Great Lakes area of Africa (identity/secession conflicts and refugee movements). Cambodia. Yet. conflict-prone areas. “After the Cold War: Emerging Patterns of Armed Conflicts”. but decreased in 1993 to 46. in 1999). Ongoing studies. and challenges to central control which may also end in fragmentation with no one actor in overall command (for example. “interference”. “intervention”). and a flare-up in the long-running dispute between India and Pakistan over Kashmir in 1996 (and. hence. former-Yugoslavia and Chechnya). The total number of conflicts steadily increased from 47 in 1989 to 55 in 1992. There have also been efforts to understand the distinctions between regions with relatively stable interstate relations and more volatile.1 They report that the new pattern of conflict involves challenges to existing state authority. West Africa (factional conflicts following the break-down of post-colonial states). Wallensteen and M. regional patterns of conflict have become more significant. Wallensteen and M. These conflicts undoubtedly require more sophisticated forms of conflict resolution. Journal of Peace Research. including secessionist movements that threaten the territorial integrity of the state (for example. 3. 1989-93”. Colombia. “diffusion”) and inwards (“influence”. Conflict Termination and Peace Agreements. Central Asia (identity/secession and factional conflicts following the collapse of the Soviet Union). 1989-96”. Haitia. “Armed Conflicts. more recently. there has been an absence of interstate war in Latin America P. Journal of Peace Research. There are several important regional variations. it gave way to a new pattern of armed conflict in the 1990s: increasingly violent internal or intrastate conflicts – wars fought within a state's own boundaries. Examples include Angola. There were no interstate wars in 1993 and 1994 and only a minor border altercation between Peru and Ecuador in 1995. Liberia. the emergence of an increasing number and diversifying nature of contemporary peacekeeping operations. the Caucasus (identity/secession conflicts following the collapse of the Soviet Union). 30 (3): 331-46. Journal of Peace Research. Sollenberg (1996). the Uppsala studies suggest that the number of armed conflicts has not been continuously rising since the end of the Cold War. Rwanda. Somalia. former-Soviet Union and former-Yugoslavia. 32 (3): 345-60. Contrary to most claims. “contagion”. For example.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 62 While the end of the Cold War in 1989 brought an end to a number of ongoing conflicts fuelled by superpower tensions. 34 (3): 339-58. A number of regions can be identified where fighting has spilled over from one area to another or where a common precipitating factor has generated violent conflicts in a vulnerable area. P. confirm this pattern. Wallensteen and M.

2 million refugees and 24 million internally displace people. Central America. Mozambique.) By 1993 internal conflict had resulted in 18. at least half of the total population have been forced to flee at some point.3 Costs It is useful to consider the material and human cost of contemporary violent conflict. (Some analysts suggest that this figure is closer to 90%. Table 4-1 displays the figues of recent armed conflict. such as the Caribbean and South Pacific states. despite its turbulent history.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 63 since 1941. Liberia. Rwanda. While there has been a decline in number and intensity of conflicts in Central and Latin America. there has been little change in the Middle East. in which no serious provisions are made for war between member states (for example. TABLE 4-1 Major Armed Conflicts by Region and Type. some former-Soviet republics. yet it has been increasing in Sub-Saharan West Africa and the Great Lakes region. by the Second World War this figure had risen to 50%. Eritrea. Approximately 28 million people may have been killed in more than 150 major armed conflicts since 1945. North America. most of them being women and children. The level of violent conflict in Southern Africa in the 1990s has been decreasing. Western Europe). the civillian share increased to about 80%. South Asia and the Balkans. and zones of war. Whereas only 5% of the casualties in the First World War were civilians. Somalia and Sudan). Distinctions can be made between pluralistic security communities. In several African countries (Angola. no-war zones. and as the new pattern of conflict emerged in the early 1990s. such as Africa. . zones of peace. the Middle East. 1995-1997 Interstate Africa Asia Europe Latin America Middle East 0 0 0 0 0 Revolution/ Ideology 3 4 0 3 3 Identity/ Succession 8 10 7 0 4 Factional 2 2 1 1 0 Total 13 16 8 4 7 3. such as Southeast Asia and (perhaps) East Asia.

By the time of the Third War in 1994-95. its declared objective was to liberate all of the people from Doe's regime. accumulated fears have driven people beyond killing the “ethnic enemy” into factions which pursue a ruthless course of immediate economic predation while also practicing a general and undirected vengeance. the faction leaders built up power and wealth by dealing in the exploitation of the country's considerable natural resources. The overall tally of material destruction. This analysis helps to explain much about behaviours in war zones in general. psychological suffering and human misery dwarfs any gain by particular conflict parties. Liberia was divided historically between the dominant “Americos”. At least six factions have been vying for power. or to prevent them escaping from conscription and forced labour. A series of wars since 1989 have reduced Liberia. A brief account of the conflict in Liberia demonstrates the high cost of conflict. for a rational warlord would not kill the goose that lays the golden egg. From the mid-1980s President Doe attempted to consolidate his power-base by favouring the Krahn ethnic group with economic and educational advantages. rubber and mineral resources. Taylor gained from the timber. and driven by general economic predation. while two factions (ULIMO-J and ULIMO-K) fought over the diamonds and gold resources. and the indigenous peoples. The AFL targeted Gio and Mano peoples. Taylor launched the Second War late in 1992. attempted to enforce a series of short-lived peace agreements. and by promoting them in the army and police force. After a stalemate. This type of behaviour is war-lordism. the NPFL killed Krahn. we must take into account socio-psychological considerations as well as economic motivations. while a regional peacekeeping force. descendants of freed American slaves who created the Liberian state. In doing so there were widespread violations of human rights as people were terrorised to part with their goods and property.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 64 This is further complicated by the length of time that some classes of conflict last. This provides the main motivation for conflict resolution: to find non-violent ways of achieving political goals. to a state of chaos and aid dependency. and Taylor's NPFL) were killing those who were perceived to be enemies. because none of this wealth was used to pay the rank-and-file faction fighters. Are there different types of conflict that need to be distinguished from each . Second. To explain the violence. When Charles Taylor's National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) started the First War in 1989. a potentially prosperous African country. In Liberia. The violence goes beyond rational expectations of what can be gained economically. Conflict Types The variation of conflict within and across regions leads to an important question in conflict analysis. the violence was no longer inter-ethnic but factional. the test of which was ethnicity. ECOMOG. First. themselves ethnically divided into at least sixteen different ethnic groups. which is characterised by a greedy attitude towards society and the economy and by reliance on military force and violence. Whole generations have no other experience than war. 4. This predation operated at two levels. they were left to fend for themselves by theft and robbery. But it was clear that both sides (Doe's national Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).

secession or control. and conflict causes. it may have been categorised as an identity/secession conflict as it was seen as a struggle between Pashtuns (Talebans). (b) changing the form of government from dictatorship to democracy. Revolution/ideology conflict includes the more ambitious aim of changing the nature of government in a state. Alternatively. Uzbekistan and Iran. In the post-Cold War world there has been a decline in the incidence of (a). Depending on the nature of the group and the contextual situation. it was an interstate conflict by proxy if the war was seen to be little more than the playing out on Afghan soil what were essentially rivalries between outside states such as Pakistan. this includes struggles for access. Factional conflict covers coups d'etat. by: (a) changing the system from capitalist to socialist. . criminality. they differentiate in terms of conflict parties. it was a factional conflict if the fighting was seen to be perpetuated by the interests of rival warlords and their clients. (c) changing the religious orientation of the state from secular to religious. and warlordism where the aim is to seize or retain state power to further particular interests. for example. Identity/secession conflict involves the relative status of communities or “communal groups” in relation to the state. conflict issues.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 65 other if effective conflict resolution is to be undertaken? There are many different typologies. but not in the incidence of (b) and particularly (c). Or. There are problems with categorising conflicts: (1) they often change character over time and (2) they are interpreted by the conflict parties in different ways. 1991 Distinctions may be usefully made between three types of non-interstate conflict. with a variety of criteria and categories. intra-elite power struggles. For example. A basic working typology for the present discussion is offered in Table 4-2 below. Uzbeks (Dostum) and Tajiks (Masood). autonomy. Or. TABLE 4-2: A Typology of International Conflict CONFLICT Interstate Non-Interstate a) Revolution/Ideology b) Identity/Secession c) Factional 2 3 4 Algeria Sri Lanka Liberia TYPE 1 EXAMPLE Gulf War. in 1996 the conflict in Afghanistan could be interpreted as a revolution/ideology conflict to the extent that it was associated with the Taleban's drive to create an Islamic state.

miscommunication. but the consolidation of new forms of power based on ethnic homogeneity). they are no longer about universal principles such as democracy. governance and the role of nations and communities within states. 4 M. 1648-1989. 6. 5. 3. P. they were about statehood. suggesting that there are common patterns and processes to be found in the kinds of conflict which have come to trouble the international community in recent years. a single. they are no longer about conscription or appeals to patriotism. Conflict is generated by the nature of societies and the way they are structured. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. encompassing theory capable of explaining all of the phenomena associated with conflict does not exist. There are explanations of conflict that take an intermediate position between these extremes. 4. 3 2 . religion. According to Kalevi Holsti. Conflict is functional in social systems and necessary for development and change. K. Conflict is innate in social animals. London: Pinter. Conflict is a natural (and potentially creative process) common to all societies However. magic and the media.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 66 5.) (1997). Conflict is the result of misperception. Therefore. Kaldor and B. 2. fascism or socialism. In terms of ideologies. Conflict is an inevitable feature of competing state interests in conditions of international anarchy. but tribalist and communalist identity politics. as there are some common features to contemporary conflicts. The intermediate position is most useful. another approach is to take the position that conflicts are unique and the most we can do is to provide historical or political accounts of each specific conflict without hoping to be able to find patterns or common causes. Wehr (1979). wars of the late-20th century were not about foreign policy or competing state interests. 7. Conflict is dysfunctional in social systems and a symptom of strain. Vashee (eds. These have been summarised by Paul Wehr into seven main areas of explanation (some of which compete with each other):2 1. Conflict Regulation. Theories of Conflict There have been many attempts to develop general theories or models for explaining the causes of conflict. New Wars: Restructuring the Global Military Sector. CO: Westview press.1 Theories 5. corruption. Boulder. but fear. Holsti (1991). Peace and War: Armed Conflicts and International Order. they are no longer about the foreign policy interests of states.3 These new wars are characterised as follows:4 In terms of: political goals. In terms of participation and forms of mobilisation. and miscalculation.

To examine these kinds of conflicts more closely and to illustrate the intermediate (between grand theory and no theory) approach to explaining conflict we will consider Edward Azar' theory of protracted social conflict (PSC). cultural and others. Cyprus. Bosnia. religious. recognition. economic resources. however defined. or Northern Ireland. or East-West rivalry and it was disticntive. The key feature of a PSC is that it represents prolonged and violent struggles by communal groups for such basic needs as security. the Philippines. because it revolved around questions of communal identity. to identify the type of conflict that has persisted in. In terms of the mode of warfare. drug-trafficking. involving para-military and criminal groups. criminal mafia. Sudan. but fragmented and dispersed. Precondition I: Communal Content The most useful unit of analysis in PSC situations is the identity group racial. which anticipated much of the current preoccupation with the domestic social roots of conflict and failures of governance. During this period. but diaspora. By the early-1990s Azar had identified over 60 examples of this new type of conflict. More recently. Nigeria. for example. Successful peacekeeping therefore depends on a better understanding of the underlying conflict causes. Israel. bases and heavy weapons. Lebanon. The term PSC emphasises that the sources of many contemporary conflicts lay within rather than between states. light weapons. Azar identified four clusters of variables that act as preconditions for potential conflicts' transformation to high levels of intensity. South Africa. because it is the relationship between identity groups and states which is at the core of . conflicts in the Balkans (Croatia. and access to political institutions and economic participation. most of all. criminal rackets. and the use of atrocity. and plunder. It is also a model of conflict causes that became highly relevant to the circumstances in which peacekeeping operations have been deployed in the 1990s. Iran. Sri Lanka. they are no no longer about formal and organised campaigns with demarcated front-lines. the nature of peacekeeping changed because the nature of conflict changed. acceptance. and Kosovo) also qualify as PSCs. It was different from traditional disputes over territory. regional powers. In terms of economics. 5. they are no longer about superpowers or ex-colonial powers. This is an example of conflict resolution s analysis developed during the 1980s. famine.2 Civil Wars and the Domestic Roots of Conflict: Conflict as Protracted Social Conflict Azar used the term protracted social conflict (PSC). Ethiopia. but sustained by outside emergency assistance and a parallel economy including unofficial export of timber and precious metals. ethnic. rape and siege. PSC analysis focuses in the first instance on identity groups. foreign mercenaries. child soldiers.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 67 In terms of external support. they are no longer funded by taxation and generated by state mobilisation.

As a result. Security is not a “stand alone” idea but is linked to needs for development and political access. if they remain unsatisfied. so that excluded groups have no loyalty or attachment to the state and may then seek to secede from it or to take it over completely. Firstly. or a hierarchical tradition of imposed bureaucratic rule from metropolitan centres. In the approach taken by Azar. conflict resolution can only occur if societies can also develop economically. Groups who seek to satisfy their identity and security needs through conflict are in effect seeking changes in the structure of their society. in many post-colonial multicommunal societies the state machinery is dominated by a single communal group or a coalition of a few communal groups who are unresponsive to the needs of other groups in the society. The weakness of the state is a crucial factor in provoking these conflicts for three reasons. development needs.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 68 the problem. This also means that they have a restricted political capacity. They may also have inherited instruments of political repression. In many places there is a disarticulation between the state and society as a whole. This strains the social fabric and eventually breeds fragmentation. Precondition III: State and Governance Azar identified the role of the state and the nature of its governance as the critical factor in determining the satisfaction or frustration of individual and identity group needs. parochial. in Western liberal theory the state is supposed to act as an impartial arbiter of conflicts. political access needs. peace is linked to development because development is the satisfaction of needs. and authoritarian governments. Precondition II: Deprivation of Needs Azar identified deprivation of human needs as the underlying source of PSC. treating all members of the political community as legally equal citizens. Azar linked the disjunction between state and society in many parts of the world to a colonial legacy which artificially imposed European ideas of territorial statehood onto different communal groups on the principle of “divide-and-rule”. the needs of all its citizens. This limited and inflexible political capacity prevents the state from responding to. he identified security needs. Individual interests and needs are mediated through membership of social groups. which. fragile. and identity needs (cultural and religious expression). people' security can s only be provided for by the meeting of these needs. They often have a colonial legacy where they have had weak or non-existent participatory institutions. . Secondly. will propel people into conflict. PSCs tend to occur in developing countries which are typically characterised by rapid population growth and a limited economic resource base. the monopolising of power by dominant individuals and groups and the limiting of access to other groups creates a crisis of legitimacy. In this case. thus feeding into the other factors which produce PSC. and meeting. This is not what happens in newer and less stable states: political authority tends to be monopolized by the dominant identity group which uses the state to maximise their interests at the expense of others. Thirdly. In this way. The reduction of overt conflict required a reduction in levels of underdevelopment. In particular. Most states in which PSC happens tend to be characterised by incompetent.

who had been discriminated against by Mobutu' Western Zairean-based regime.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 69 Precondition IV: International Linkage Azar' concept of international linkage refers particularly to political-economic relations s of economic dependency within the international economic system. this swelled s into concerted military support for Laurent Kabila in his march on Kinshasa and eventual deposition of Mobutu. similar incursions were beginning to tip the scale in the long-standing conflict in Sudan. A number of Tutsi exiles from Rwanda helped President Museveni of Uganda in his successful bid for power. and Rwanda and Uganda on the side of the rebels. Meanwhile. 6. which eventually seized control of Rwanda in 1994. in Autumn 1996. The main focus here is on what Paul Rogers describes as three interlinked trends: deep inequalities in the global distribution of wealth and economic power. The internal factors generated by the first three preconditions become complicated and exacerbated by the spread of the conflict across the borders of the state. Namibia and Zimbabwe were drawn in on the side of Kabila. A network of political-military linkages develops as both the state authorities and the rebelling groups look for regional and global sources of support. regarding conflict as local manifestations of global processes. In 1998 renewed fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo (former-Zaire) threatened to internationalise the conflict further as Angola. including the further proliferation of lethal weaponry. making it difficult for human well-being to be improved by conventional economic growth. which has experienced some of the world' s most brutal conflicts in recent years. They were integrated into the Ugandan army after 1986. to cross-border action in then-Zaire against the Hutu militia responsible for the 1994 Rwanda massacres who were being sheltered by President Mobutu. This in turn had a knock-on effect in Angola by depriving UNITA' Jonas s Savimbi of Mobutu' support. Global Sources of Contemporary Conflict While Azar saw international linkages as one of the four main clusters of variables making PSC likely. and subsequently defected with their weapons to the mainly Tutsi-led Rwanda Patriotic Front forces. human-induced environmental constraints exacerbated by excessive energy consumption in the developed world and population growth in the undeveloped world. and encouraging the sending in of Angolan troops to s Congo-Brazzaville to help reinstall Denis Sassou-Nguesso as President in October 1997. This led to a consolidation of Tutsi control in Burundi and. With enthusiastic backing from the Zairean Tutsi Banyamulenge. For example. . more recently analysts have located the sources of contemporary conflict at the global level. domestic or internal civil wars have both spilled over to provoke conflicts in neighbouring states and have themselves been fuelled by forces in neighbouring states intervening to help one side or the other. This is well illustrated by the conflict in and around Rwanda. continuing militarisation of security relations. in the Great Lakes region of Africa.

north-south (and other) political tensions. In Lesson 5 we will look at how the kind of analysis we have considered here in Lesson 4 is helpful in understanding the events that caused a brutally violent conflict in one of Africa' s poorest countries. At the end of the twentieth century 1/7 of the world' population controlled 3/4 of its wealth. environmental deterioration. forecasters are giving serious consideration to predictions of a coming generation of conflicts fuelled by global economic turbulence. As traditional patterns of authority and order are weakened.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 70 As a result of these trends. weapons proliferation. . a combination of wealth-poverty disparities and limits to growth may contribute to future unsatisfied expectations. and international crime impacting on “weak states”. The conflict tested peacekeeping mechanisms up to and beyond their capacity to cope. and 3/4 of humanity live in developing s countries. exclusionist policies linked to ethnic and religious identities emerge as alternative sources of loyalty. Rwanda. In this context. a proportion likely to continue rising.

pp. 65-91). "Statistics of Deadly Quarrels". "Understanding Contemporary Conflict". Dando (1992). P. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). .Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 71 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 1. Rogers. Aldershot: Darmouth. pp. Chapter 3. 22-33. A Violent Peace: Global Security After the Cold War. and M. (1990). E. Azar. London: Brasseys. The Management of Protracted Social Conflict: Theory and Cases.

The world' most conflict prone areas are (choose two): s a. Serbia and Kosovo d. 150 c. Paul Rogers d. The Mediterranean fringe of southern Europe c. Most of the conflicts that occurred during the 1990s were: a. civil wars 2. How many people have been killed in these conflicts? a. factional conflicts c. 200 d. Protracted social conflict was a term for a type and cause of conflict developed by which conflict analyst? a. Mary Kaldor b. Croatia. 100 b.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 72 LESSON 4 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. 10 million b. Edward Azar 6. The Great Lakes of Africa e. Southeast Europe and the Balkans 3. The Gulf War b. All of the above . Approximately how many major armed conflicts have there been since 1945? a. 18 million c. The Pacific b. Which of the following would you include as a PSC? a. Western Europe d. The Falklands War c. Kalevi Holsti c. 28 million d. 250 4. The wars in Bosnia. 38 million 5. interstate conflicts b.

8-communal content. True b. a. How many preconditions are there to identify a PSC? a. international linkages. needs deprivation. 4-c. True b. 2-d. a. false . List these preconditions below. 6-c. False 10. 4 c. Conflict resolution theory suggests that all conflicts have exact common causes. 8 8. 10-b.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 73 7. Peacekeeping was developed in the 1950s especially to deal with civil wars or PSCs. 3-b. False Answer Key: 1-c. 9. 5-d. 7-b. 9-b. 2 b. state/governance. false. 6 d.

follow the news about any one international conflict covered by the mass media (i.e.. is it not easily classifiable? Why? 4. of course. How would you classify the type of conflict? Inter-state Religion/Ideology Identity secession Factional Or. At least one conflict will be ongoing and reported in the press. Is there evidence that any of Azar' four variable are at work? s Communal content Needs denial Poor/corrupt governace International linkage .e. or any other “hot” conflict. Congo. From what you have heard or read about the conflict. Who is the conflict between (i. complete the following assessment profile. It might be the conflict in Chechnya. newspaper. You need only follow the news account (i. television or radio). 1. who are the conflict parties)? 3.. you do not need to do any background research unless. you wish to).. Method: For one week. Where is the conflict? 2. the Former Yugoslavia including Kosovo. on the television or radio in a typical week.e.Lesson 4/Contemporary Conflict Dynamics 74 Exercise: Conflict Analysis Aim: To apply some of the elements of conflict analysis outlined above to a “live” conflict happening as you are studying this unit.

LESSON 5 CONFLICT MAPPING 1. "beyond here be dragons".1 A Conflict Mapping Guide: A Preliminary Conflict Analysis 2. there are dragons aplenty in the terra incognita of complex emergencies and civil wars. they sometimes wrote on their maps. "Peacekeeping: Terra Incognita ‘Here Be Dragons’ " . When the mapmakers of the old world came across terra incognita or unknown territory. .2 Conflict Tracking A Conflict Map of Rwanda 3. For peacekeepers and others working in contemporary conflict zones. 2.Tom Woodhouse. Introduction What is Conflict Mapping? 2.

After studying the material contained in this lesson. Understand the ways in which conflict analysis and mapping can be used in relation to a specific conflict (Rwanda).Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 76 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson provides an account of how particular conflicts can be understood by the use of conflict mapping and conflict tracking techniques. including an examination of the role of UN peacekeeping in that conflict. The technique is illustrated in acase study of the conflict in Rwanda. Produce a preliminary conflict map. Be familiar with a conflict mapping system. . the student will: Be aware of the importance of conducting a conflict analysis through conflict mapping techniques.

Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 77 1. dynamics and possibilities for resolution of the conflict. nature. reflecting on hurt and pain. One of the first conflict mapping frameworks in Conflict Resolution was developed by Paul Wehr. winner-takes-all perspective). or they may use integrative lens (that is. in general. It gives both the intervenor and the conflict parties a clearer understanding of the origins. In this lesson we show you how to develop and apply a conflict-mapping system. and begin to understand the needs of their opponents). A conflict map does not. Conflict mapping enables peacekeepers and other conflict resolvers to develop a clear understanding of how the conflict parties perceive the situation and it increases the opportunities to promote integrative perspectives. What is Conflict Mapping? 2. It is a way of presenting a systematic analysis of a particular conflict at a particular moment in time. . from whom the guide here is adapted. aim to solve the conflict. we dealt with the approaches. In this Lesson we move from how conflict. they may have an adversarial lens (an us-versus-them. inward looking. The analysis of conflict is a necessary precondition for successful management and resolution.1 Conflict Mapping Conflict mapping is the first step for intervening in a conflict.. to how particular conflicts can be understood through a conflict mapping analysis at the micro-level (i. which proved to be a very difficult case for UN peacekeeping. or they may have a reflective lens (that is. Parties locked in conflict have three lenses through which they may view their conflict: most typically (as this is why they are in conflict). considering how to achieve their own goals). and to up-date this by conflict tracking. Conflict mapping provides a method by which to apply the broader guidelines provided by conflict analysis. 2. It is important that peacekeeping forces are aware and well-informed about the nature of the conflict in which they are intervening and that they are able to have tools for understanding the changing forces of the conflict. can be understood at the macro-level. the component parts of a specific conflict). they are able to understand their own needs.e. Introduction In Lesson Four. A conflict map should be understood to represent the views of the author(s) and to be indicative rather than comprehensive. We will demonstrate the use of conflict mapping through a case study of Rwanda. Conflict mapping is a tool used by conflict analysts and it is widely used in conflict resolution workshops to provide participants with a snapshot of the conflict under consideration. definitions and models by which we can begin to understand the phenomenon of violent armed conflict. of course. it attempts to identify questions and issues that must be taken into account in any intervention strategy.

including internal leadership struggles. Brief description of the country 3. values. including the interests and capacities of third parties to influence it. This should identify: (1) changes in the context which could alter the conflict situation. there should be ongoing efforts to review the operational priorities of the mission in relation to the changing realities of the conflict. What is the current behaviour of the parties? Is the conflict in an “escalatory” or “de-escalatory phase? 6. What are the relationships between the conflict parties? Are there inequalities (asymmetries) of power? 4. (4) likely constraints on these. Who are the core conflict parties? What are their internal sub-groups? On what constituencies do they depend? 2. The Conflict Parties 1. relationships) and needs? 3. and the readiness of general populations to express support for a settlement. including suggested steps towards settlement and eventual transformation. For the specific needs of peacekeepers. preferably carried out with the help of the parties or embedded third parties. What are the conflict issues? Is it possible to distinguish between positions. interests (material interests. B. Section D. Outline history of the conflict. This analysis can be built upon and made more complex by adding other mapping features. Who are the leaders of the parties? . (3) possible ways of redefining goals and finding alternative means of resolving differences. (2) changes within and between the conflict parties. varying prospects for military success. A Conflict Mapping Guide A. for example.2 Conflict Mapping: A Preliminary Conflict Analysis The framework below provides a starting point by which you can gain an orientation and a good working understanding of the background to the conflict and to the actors and the issues they are pursuing. and (5 how these might be overcome. What are the different perceptions of the causes and nature of the conflict among the conflict parties? 5. The relevance of this level of analysis will depend on the responsibilities held. 2. Higher-level analysis of this kind is more likely to be conducted by those with strategic policy analysis roles in the military.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 78 This is followed-up by further analysis using the information in the map to identify the scope for conflict resolution. Conflict Background 1. diplomatic and political arenas. Map of the area 2.

What efforts have been made in the past to resolve the conflict? 2. There are also an increasing number of news pages and conferences on particular conflicts available on-line. based in the Netherlands.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 79 At the elite/individual level. policies. Regional Level How do relations with neighbouring states and societies affect the conflict? Do the parties have regional supporters? Which regional actors may be trusted by the conflict parties? 3.3 Conflict Tracking A conflict map is an initial snapshot. This can now be done efficiently through the internet. It produces an international directory describing the activities of approximately 500 organisations working in the field of conflict prevention. International Level Are there outside geo-political interests? What external factors fuel the conflict? What may change them? 2. management and resolution. the United Nations and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations. The directory also contains profiles of current conflicts. and interests? What are their relative strengths and weaknesses? C. such as ReliefWeb. Regional and State Level Context 1. Analysts may then want to regularly up-date it by conflict tracking. what are their objectives. along with other sources of information about them. What efforts are being made to resolve the conflict presently? As a peacekeeper. using information from a wide range of sources. if you were to be deployed on a current peacekeeping mission Sierra Leone or . what is your role likely to be? Is your role clear? Do you have the expertise and resources to manage? Who else in the area is involved in peacemaking efforts (either internal or external groups)? Are you aware of other individuals or organisations in the area with whom you might liase? Advanced Level of Analysis D. For example. Peacemaking Activities 1. National. A major source of conflict information is the site of the European Platform for Conflict Prevention and Transformation (EPCPT). National Level Is the nature of the state contested? Are there institutions or organisations that could provide legitimate spaces for managing the conflict? 2.

org UN Peace & Security: www.icrc/ch/ Relief Web: www.un.sps.uk .ac.ac.int/ International www.un.uk/acad/peace/confres/ Journal of Humanitarian Assistance: www-jha.org/Depts/dpko EPCPT: www.nl The Carter Center: www.edu/carter-center ICRC (Red Cross): www.reliefweb.un.org/peace UN DPKO: www.intl-crisis-group. there would be many on-line sources of information which would enable you to obtain valuable.cam.euconflict@antenna.org Crisis Group: UN and Conflicts Monitor: www.emory. Some of these online sources are listed in Table 5-1 below.brad. or with KFOR or UNMIK in Kosovo.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 80 East Timor. TABLE 5-1 Selected On-Line Information Sources for Conflict Mapping and Tracking United Nations: www. up-to-date information about the conflict.

information about the nature of the country and the roots of the fierce conflict which overwhelmed it in the early-1990s. 8. Mayors and prefects are appointed by the President. and the actual area of arable land must support a population of 7. 1: Map of Rwanda Rwanda is one of the smallest countries in Africa. A Conflict Map of Rwanda In the conflict map of Rwanda described below.2 million are . The conflict and its aftermath continues to trouble the Great Lakes Region within which Rwanda is situated. and/or by engaging in the “black economy” including cross-border trade and smuggling. We conclude the profile with a brief assessment of the UN' role. A.6 million are without access to potable water. 2-3: Background: Outline History and Description of the Country During a three month period in 1994 an estimated 500. Burundi. Most peasant farming households therefore also earned money from working informally in small trades such as brick making. The country is divided into ten prefectures.15 million people (1991 census).4% of the population was Hutu. The population is overwhelmingly engaged in peasant farming. were killed in the course of a genocidal civil war in Rwanda. This provides a context for understanding the enormous difficulties faced by peacekeepers during this time.000-800. we have not tried to cover all the mapping levels indicated in the mapping guide.2% Tutsi and less than 1% a marginalised minority of pygmoid Twa. Over two million people fled to become refugees in neighbouring countries. Belgium. with 95% living in the countryside. According to the 1991 census. and up to one million became displaced within Rwanda.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 81 3. an average of 406 people per square kilometre the highest population density in mainland Africa. and 3. The pressure on rural households to feed families from subsistence farming has become severe with population pressure forcing the unsustainable use of marginal land and soil fertility deteriorating. and its former colonial power. Only 4% of the population are economically active within the cash economy. Kigali. s A. and in some estimates possibly up to one million people.000. It is also one of the most densely populated. 90. but clear. We have simplified the map in order to provide minimal. 3% in industry and 66% of the urban population concentrated in the capital. similar in size to its southern neighbour. the prefectures are divided into 143 communes governed by mayors or bourgmestres. With an annual average increase in population of 3% neither the farming households nor the small industrial and service sector can absorb the increase in the working population. The material conditions of the population are severe: 2. each headed by a prefect.

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without sanitation. The position of women is especially disadvantaged; although they are given equal status as citizens in the constitution, in effect women can own nothing legally. The formal economy is built around two cash crops: tea and coffee. Coffee is grown by approximately 700,000 smallholders who were obliged to grow it on their land in return for a guaranteed price per kilo from the government. By 1986, coffee exports produced over 80% of Rwanda' export earnings, but these earnings fell dramatically in the 1990s, partly as a result of s the collapse of world coffee prices and, from 1990, with the impact of the conflict that raged into genocidal slaughter in 1994. The performance of the economy generally worsened dramatically by the end of the 1980s. With the increase in national debt by 450% between 1980 and 1992 (from US$189 million to US$873 million), a structural adjustment programme was introduced by the World Bank and the IMF between 1990 and 1992, coinciding with the outbreak of the war. Most of the population live on hill farms, in a rugo (a compound or household); every hill contains a collection of ingo (plural for rugo), where both Hutu and Tutsi live side by side. These form the basic units of society. The administrative language is French, but the common vernacular language is kinyarwanda. In 1991, up to 50% of the population was illiterate. In terms of religion, 90% of the population is Christian, 63% of these Catholics who were brought into the Church as a result of French missionary activity which had a vigorous presence from the late-19th century. Most of the founders of Hutu nationalism were educated at Catholic schools and there has been a close relationship between leaders of Church and State. The first inhabitants of Rwanda were hunter-gatherers and forest dwellers, whose contemporary descendants are the minority Twa. From about 1000 AD there began a migration of farmers (Hutu) from what is now Cameroon, who cleared the forests and began settled agriculture. The Tutsi probably arrived into the Great Lakes Region as part of yet another migration, southwards from the Horn of Africa. They were pastoralists who traded cattle products for agricultural products, but this peaceful trading was followed by Tutsi conquests and military and administrative control. One Tutsi clan, the Nyiginya, initially achieved political dominance in eastern Rwanda and over a period of several centuries they formed the core of a state that expanded westwards. Hutu and Tutsi were distinguished, in addition to clear physical differences, largely by occupational categories: Tutsi were cattle herders, soldiers and administrators, while Hutu were farmers. However, Tutsi were assimilated in the sense that they spoke the language used by Hutu (kinyarwanda); they adopted Hutu traditions and customs; and a clan system in which Hutu and Tutsi had common membership, spanned the whole society. By the end of the 19th century, Rwanda was united under the king (mwami) Kigeri IV who, as head of the state, owned all land and cattle. The mwami and all army chiefs were Tutsi, and the provinces were administered by Tutsi chiefs. Thus, the pre-colonial Rwandese state was a Tutsi-dominated structure, with Hutu in the middle and lower levels of the administration. Initially under German colonial rule and then (as Ruanda-Urundi) occupied by Belgium, Rwanda came under Belgian trusteeship for the League of Nations and then the UN. The distinction between Hutu and Tutsi was maintained and in 1933 compulsory identity cards were introduced by the Belgian administrators, from which time all Rwandese were decisively

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categorised into Hutu, Tutsi and Twa. The Tutsi were given a monopoly of political and administrative power under Belgian trusteeship. This whole system was thrown into reverse when during the 1950s, as part of the process of decolonisation, support shifted from the minority Tutsi to the majority Hutu. Between 1959 and 1961 the Tutsi-dominated monarchy was replaced during a revolution by a Hutu-dominated independent republic. In July 1962, Rwanda gained independence from Belgium, under the presidency of Gregoire Kayibanda from the Parmehutu Party. The seeds of the modern conflict were sown in this period when tens of thousands of Tutsi, in a series of upheavals, were forced into exile in neighbouring countries, and refugee groups began armed attacks across the border into Rwanda. By the early 1990s it has been estimated that there were 600, 000 Tutsi refugees in Zaire, Tanzania, Burundi and Uganda, equivalent to about 9% of the total population of the country, or 50% of the Tutsi population. B, 1-6: Conflict Parties and Issues In 1973, following a coup d' Major General Juvenal Habyarimana took power and etat, formed the Second Republic, backed by a new party, the Mouvement Revolutionnaire National pour le Developpement (MRND), which became the only party under the constitution of 1978. The exiled Tutsi became increasingly militant and in 1988, following a conference on Rwandan refugees held in Washington DC, the Rwandese Patriotic Front (RPF) was formed in Kampala, Uganda. Based in and supported by Uganda, the RPF launched an attack on northern Rwanda and demanded the right to re-settle large numbers of mainly Tutsi refugees, as well as a series of political reforms, including a multi-party democracy. The RPF had very close links with the Ugandan army, the NRA of President Museveni. Despite a series of internal, and later international, efforts to resolve the conflict between the RPF and the Habyarimana regime, a particular difficulty and obstacle to reform and moderation was caused by the make-up of the regime itself. The Hutu of northern Rwanda had remained independent of the centralising state under the Tutsi mwami or kings. However, in 1911 they were militarily defeated by a combined force of German and southern Rwanda Tutsi troops, leaving a legacy both of resentment and suspicion and re-enforcing the memory of a past not dominated by Tutsi. Habyarimana' informal s council (akazu), composed of his wife and his brothers-in-law, represented this Hutu subculture. This made the regime prone to pressure from those suspicious of reconciliatory gestures and hostile to those moderate Hutu who favoured dialogue with the RPF. The akazu was also implicated in the massacres which occurred from April 1994, building up the Hutu militias (the interahamwe, meaning "those who work together"), which carried out much of the killings, and issuing instructions to the mayors. Nonetheless, there was growing internal and international pressure on Habyarimana and the MRND to allow a multi-party system, to respect human rights, and to enable a fair resettlement of refugees. C: Peacemaking Activities: Efforts to Resolve the Conflict By late 1992, although the RPF had made significant military advances, there was a stalemate. A series of cease-fires were agreed, with Belgium, Tanzania and Uganda involved at various times as mediators. Following talks in Zaire in 1990, the OAU agreed to send a small observer force to oversee a cease-fire (the Groupement des Observateurs Militaires Neutres,

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GOMN). The Arusha talks, between the RPF and the Rwandan government, began on 10th August 1992, facilitated by Tanzania but with the involvement of Belgium, Burundi, France, Germany, Senegal, the US, Zaire and the OAU. Following a year of negotiations, agreement was reached on a set of protocols covering: human rights issues; power sharing in a transitional government and parliament; the resettlement of refugees and internally displaced persons (who, by February 1993, numbered one million); and the creation of a unified national army. Presidential and parliamentary elections were set for the end of the period of transition, and a commission would be appointed to draft a new constitution. Nine months after the inauguration of the transitional government, the first groups of refugees would be allowed to resettle in a number of repatriation areas. In the military reforms, specified in the Arusha Agreement (signed in August 1993 by President Habyarimana and the RPF leader Alexis Kanyarengwe), the role for a peacekeeping force was defined. There provision was for a neutral international force, either UN peacekeepers or an enlarged deployment of the OAU's GOMN under UN supervision, to provide security in Kigali specifically and in Rwanda overall; to supervise the demilitarised zone along the border with Uganda; and to supervise the transitional political agreements. The deployment of such a force was a precondition for the entire process to proceed. However, the implementation of the accords was delayed, partly because of the slowness of the deployment of UN peacekeeping troops and partly because of the continued resistance of Habyarimana to implement the changes. Despite formal agreement to Arusha, Habyarimana's regime promoted ethnic and political polarisation. There is considerable evidence of an organised extremism within and around the presidency which was either linked directly to, or at least did nothing to restrain, the outbreak of a series of massacres and abuses of human rights, mostly directed against Tutsi communities but also against Hutu moderates. The Hutu militias were first seen in action in a massacre of Tutsi at Bugesera in March 1992. In a series of similar events a pattern emerged where a massacre was preceded by intense ethnic propaganda by highly placed officials in the ruling MRND and local mayors, and by the recruitment of the interahamwe militias across the country, mostly unemployed young men, loyal to the hard- liners and providing a chain of command from the elite into the rural communes. Thus, when the Arusha Agreements were signed, polarisation within Rwanda was increasing rather than diminishing. Political moderates came under increasing pressure because of the way in which the Habyarimana regime equated opponents of their party with enemies of the Hutu people. To add to the tensions, in July 1993, Radio-Television Libre des Milles Collines (RTLMC) began broadcasting. Backing the hard-line members of the MRND and the uncompromising Hutu party Coalition pour la Defence de la Republique, (CDR), RTMLC was opposed to the Arusha process and provided another powerful element in the incitement of Hutu against Tutsi and moderate politicians. Despite all this, it was generally felt in late-1993 that the Arusha process would move forward, albeit more slowly than was planned. Formal approval was given by the UN Security Council for the deployment of 2,500 peacekeepers to be deployed by March 1994; the first troops arrived in October 1993. However, the foundation on which all other activities depended, the enlarged transitional government which was to be the vehicle of the peace process, never came into existence.

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Two major trigger events precipitated the full outbreak of a massively violent civil war. In October 1993, the first democratically elected Hutu president of Burundi, whose problems mirrored those of Rwanda, was assassinated by Tutsi soldiers in the Burundian army. Many saw this as the death for the Arusha Accords. In the aftermath of this coup thousands died in Burundi, and approximately 70,000 Hutu from Burundi fled into southern Rwanda. For those hard-liners in Rwanda who wished to spell out the lesson of the assassination, the message was clear: Arusha could not work, because the Tutsi would never accept Hutu rule even within a government of national unity. If this first event made the failure of the Arusha Accords likely, the second trigger event made the failure certain and plunged the country into a period of violence which is commonly regarded as one of the worst in human history. On the evening of 6th April 1994 the Mystere Falcon aircraft carrying President Habyarimana of Rwanda and President Ntaryamira of Burundi, who were returning from a meeting in Tanzania, was shot down on its approach to Kigali airport, killing all on board. On the same evening of the crash, what appeared to be a planned programme of killing began, directed from the highest level. The main perpetrators of the genocide have been identified as the core group of Habyarimana's closest advisers; the leaders of the local communes, numbering up to 300; the interahamwe militias numbering up to 30,000, who carried out most of the killing; and members of the military elite and the Presidential Guard who provided support to local interahamwe. The first act was the killing of opposition politicians, mostly Hutu, followed by civilians who supported the peace process, including journalists, civil servants and human rights activists. One of the first victims was Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana who was killed along with ten UN peacekeepers from Belgium acting as her bodyguards. After the annihilation of the political opposition the Tutsi community in general became the target. Between April and June 1994 500,000 to 800,000 people were killed, two million fled to neighbouring countries, and one million were displaced within Rwanda. The UN was very active in organising humanitarian relief, with the Secretary General Boutros- Ghali launching an inter-agency appeal in March 1993 which raised US$78 million. In the ensuing humanitarian crisis, a total of US$1.4 billion was given by the international community, the largest donors being the European Union's Humanitarian Office (ECHO) and various departments of the US government. The bulk of this aid was channelled through UNHCR, WFP, and the Red Cross movement. In addition, up to 200 NGOs became involved in humanitarian relief. Yet, due to the severity of the violence and the chaos that broke out after 6th April, humanitarian personnel were evacuated and humanitarian operations temporarily suspended. However, the UN Disaster Management Team was re-established with its base in Nairobi, under the direction of the newly created UN Rwanda Emergency Office (UNREO). On 8th April, the RPF resumed its offensive from the north, joined by a 600 strong battalion stationed in Kigali under the Arusha Agreement. By the middle of July Kigali the capital was taken and a new government installed with Pasteur Bizimungu as President and Faustin Twagiramungu as Prime Minister, both Hutu. But effective power rested with General Paul Kagame, commander of the RPF and Vice President and Minister of Defence in the new regime.

Mission strength would build up to 2. the mission (headquartered in Kabale. The UNAMIR operation was planned in four phases. but would continue its monitoring work along the border. as his Special Representative in Rwanda. Dallaire arrived in Kigali as force commander on 22nd October.Rwanda (UNOMUR) on the Uganda side of the border to verify that no military assistance was being provided. However.e. In June 1994 he was succeeded by Mr. Following a UN reconnaissance mission to Rwanda during 19th-31st August.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 86 D: The Role of Peacekeeping Following incursions into Rwanda from Uganda from 1990. The Secretary-General appointed Brigadier General Romeo Dallaire (Canada) as Commanding Military Observer. when he was replaced by Major-General Guy Tousignant (Canada) who served until December 1995. Phase two would last for 90 days and would involve the demobilisation of armed forces and the integration of a new national army. The next day witnessed the event that projected the war into a vicious and decisive phase (i. Despite this. the Secretary-General recommended the establishment of a United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR). Throughout all four phases the mission would assist in ensuring security in the capital. and provide security for the repatriation of refugees and displaced persons.M. followed by an advanced party of 21 military personnel. Dallaire served as Force Commander until August 1994. UNSCR 909 (5th April 1994) extended the mandate of UNAMIR for a further six months. former Minister for External Relations of Cameroon. agreed under UNSCR 872 (5th October 1993). In phase four. Kigali. an accusation which Uganda denied.. A civilian police contingent (CIVPOL) was also established. planned to last nine months. a major obstacle was the failure to install the transitional government. By the end of September. During phase three.548 in phase two and decline to approximately 930 by phase four. It would also assist in the co-ordination of humanitarian relief operations. the shooting down of the presidential aircraft). UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 846 (22nd June 1993) authorised the establishment of a United Nations Observer Mission Uganda. the Secretary-General appointed Mr. S. A small technical mission was deployed in early-April 1993. The Belgian government withdrew its battalion from UNAMIR after its peacekeepers . In November. Jacques Roger Booh Booh. and while expressing concern at the lack of progress. UNAMIR would supervise the final stages of the transitional arrangements in the build-up to the elections agreed in the Arusha talks. Khan (Pakistan). In June 1993 the RPF and the government of Rwanda asked the UN to be prepared for the rapid deployment of a peacekeeping force when the Arusha peace talks concluded. planned to take four months. In 1993 both countries asked the UN to help establish the facts and to deploy military observers along the border. had reached its authorised strength of 81 military observers. after which Brigadier-General Siva Kumar (India) was appointed as Acting Force Commander. UNAMIR would establish and monitor a new demilitarised zone and the integration of the armed forces and the gendarmerie would be completed. Phase one would end when the transitional government was established (anticipated late-1993). Uganda). UNOMUR would come under the command of the new mission. Rwanda accused Uganda of arming and supporting the RPF.

There were reports in early-1995 that the forces of the former Rwandese government were re-arming and the RPA tightened their own security policy. This . the Secretary General urged the Security Council to consider taking more forceful action to restore law and order. It was clear that many of the former political leaders and the militias were determined to prevent people returning and apparently intended to mount an armed invasion to regain power. the second option was taken. Under UNSCR 912 (21st April 1994). Three options were offered: (1) to massively re-enforce UNAMIR. On 18th May 1994 UNSCR 918 imposed an arms embargo on Rwanda and expanded UNAMIR's mandate to provide for the security and protection of refugees through the establishment of secure areas. or (3) to withdraw altogether. acting as an intermediary to secure a cease-fire. Powerless to stop the massacres. There were serious delays in deploying UNAMIR forces under its expanded mandate of May 1994 (by the end-July 1994. Under UNSCR 955 (8th November 1994) the Security Council established an International Tribunal for Rwanda to prosecute those responsible for violations of international law.500 troops (UNAMIR II). though to do so would require a much larger commitment than member states appeared willing to consider. given the situation. On 9th December 1994. In UNSCR 935 (1st July 1994). This resulted in the formation of a Commission of Experts (based in Geneva) to investigate the violations. having done much to stabilise the situation in their zone in the south-west. (2) to reduce it to a small group to remain in the capital under the force commander. Although approved in May.500 troops deployed in six sectors.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 87 were killed. For UNAMIR and for UNREO. Authorisation was granted to expand the force to 5. and to provide security for relief operations. On 20th April the Secretary-General informed the Security Council that. including Kigali. UNAMIR only reached its full operational strength by October. there some critics of the French intervention who asked if the motivation had been purely humanitarian. where there were an estimated 2 million internally displaced people. In early-1995. the final report of the Commission of Experts concluded that there was overwhelming evidence of acts of genocide against Tutsi by Hutu. the priority was to deal with the unprecedented humanitarian crisis in the north-west and south-west of the country. Increasing concern was expressed about those who incited people to flee from Rwanda and threatened those seeking to return home. concern was expressed about reports of continued violations of international humanitarian law. or perhaps a blend of French domestic and foreign policy interests. However. under Chapter VII of the Charter. Human rights field operations were conducted by 100 officers. UNAMIR could not carry out its tasks. the Human Rights Field Operation in Rwanda (HFOR) became fully operational and followed a strategy intended to promote confidence-building and national reconciliation through attention to issues of justice and human rights. and an effort bolster the forces of the Hutu regime. Therefore. UNSCR 929 (22nd June 1994) accepted and authorised a French proposal to deploy a force (Operation Turquoise). With massacres continuing on a large scale in Kigali. The French troops withdrew as they had planned on 21st August. especially in the south. with 5. Boutros Ghali publicly referred to the massacres as genocide. tasked to investigate violations of international law. tasked to establish a humanitarian protected zone in south-west Rwanda. less than 500 troops were deployed).

a move which threatened the UNHCR policy of a safe. A general arms embargo continued to apply to Rwanda. general governance and reconciliation. Hence.000 inhabitants tried to break out of the camp. The full-scale war and the genocide had ended with the establishment of a new government of national unity on 19th July 1994. the government of Zaire provoked a new refugee crisis when it decided to begin the forced repatriation of refugees to Rwanda and Burundi. When the mandate was renewed for the period from December 1995 to March 1996 it was for a final period. UNAMIR's mandate was extended for six months from June to December 1995. in the late-1996. Outside the country. but with troop numbers reduced from 5. the government of Rwanda officially informed the SG that it did not wish the mandate to be extended because it felt that the country no longer required a peacekeeping mission and that priorities had shifted to the rehabilitation.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 88 issue caused tension between the new government and UNAMIR. a large number of deaths occurred when an estimated 80. The new government raised questions about the role and future of UNAMIR. orderly and phased repatriation. This situation eventually. In April 1995. reconstruction and development needs of the country. provoked an armed rebellion in the east of the country. recapture power in Rwanda. linked to a corrupt and failing government. Despite a general feeling throughout the international community that the mandate of UNAMIR should be renewed in order to support the process of the organised return of refugees. UNAMIR's role was changed. especially around Lake Kivu in the Goma region.4 million refugees in eastern Zaire.800. In response.000 to 1. from this base. Tension was heightening in the border areas and fears of infiltration from armed elements of the former government continued. The general situation was made more tense in that the need to allow people to return to their homes was made very difficult by intimidation within the camps and by the fear of reprisals on return. presented both a severe humanitarian challenge and an explosive security situation. a decision which was strongly objected to by Zaire because of the fear of increased tension and flow of refugees. A joint technical team of UN DPKO and UNHCR recommended international supervision of security in the camps but there was little willingness by member states to supply personnel. destabilised neighbouring Zaire when the refugee crisis there. the 1. UNAMIR completed its withdrawal from Rwanda by 19th April 1996. which was accused of doing little to stop arms deliveries to former government forces in the camps in surrounding countries Rwanda. In a visit to the region in July 1995. the context in which UNAMIR was operating had changed. it was evident that the rate of return of refugees was slow because of continued misinformation and intimidation in the camps by the militias of the former regime who wished to hold power in a community in exile and. Despite the alarming instability and violence that still continued. the government decided to cordon off the eight remaining camps for internally displaced people in the south of the country. At the largest of these (Kibeho). The government of Rwanda was asserting its sovereignty and responsibility for security. roads schools and providing transport for humanitarian assistance. By late-1995. A reduced . Boutros Ghali emphasised the dangers of instability in the whole of the Great Lakes region. however. The Security Council decided to lift its arms embargo on Rwanda in August 1995 (UNSCR 1011). with more emphasis on supporting the construction of bridges.

This led to calls for a range of reforms of peacekeeping. . over 400 stayed in Kigali). the Security Council cut the peacekeeping force to less than 300 (in fact. relating to planning and preparation capabilities in advance of a crisis. It has been suggested that an increasing feeling of “Africa fatigue” and “compassion fatigue” was beginning to affect the judgements and motivations of the main powers in the UN system. co-ordination of the efforts of the various agencies. Thus. the return of refugees. especially in the US. Assessment of Peacekeeping Role The failure of the UN to react effectively has been thoroughly assessed and reported on the UN. it took up to six months to organise their arrival in the country. The effectiveness of the UNAMIR mission and the general response of the international community was inhibited from the beginning by a number of factors. and that this produced a failure of political will to provide the mandate and the resources which an effective peacekeeping operation would require. three months after the killings began. and better understanding between the military and civilian/humanitarian agencies. Here. and the government of Rwanda agreed to the establishment of a United Nations Office in Rwanda (UNOR).Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 89 HRFO remained. including better preparation for early and rapid deployment. by July 1994. It was also clear from the Rwanda experience that the humanitarian agencies of the international community were poorly prepared to respond. a series of reforms have been called for. the strengthening of the judicial system and the rehabilitation of the country' s infrastructure. and when a new and larger force was authorised. a more cautious attitude to the potential of peacekeeping influenced the thinking of some politicians and policy-makers. This had a paralysing effect in Rwanda. The report is available on the UN homepage at the address listed in Table 5-1.which would continue to support the processes of reconciliation. itself. too. none of the UNAMIR II troops had arrived in Rwanda. Particularly after the experience in Somalia. Just as the killing escalated to genocide.

"Conflict Mapping and Conflict Tracking". D. and Chapter 5.91-4. Democracy and Deep-Rooted Conflict: Options for Negotiators. Reilly (eds. 133-9) Harris. 29-58) . Stockholm: International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) (especially. Cambridge: Polity. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). pp. and B. pp. "Case Study: Rwanda".) (1998). (Chapter 3. Bloomfield. pp. "Analysing Deep-Rooted Conflict". Contemporary Conflict Resolution. Yash Ghai and Ben Reilly. P. Chapter 2.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 90 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall.

Conflict tracking involves: a. Conflict mapping provides a technique for finding the solution to a conflict.Lesson 5/Conflict Mapping 91 LESSON 5 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. Hutu c. Tutsi 5. Tutsi c. following a conflict and up-dating information/understanding 3. 15% c. The majority population in Rwanda is: a. 1952 b. Under colonial administration the key administrative and governmental posts were filled by: a. Rwanda gained independence in: a. After independence. Britain b. France c. 50% d. and in the period up to the early-1990s. 1972 6. Twa b. Twa 7. there was a major displacement of the Tutsi population who became refugees in neighbouring countries. field-based analysis of war-zones c. False 2. 10% b. 80% . multi-track intervention b. True b. The former colonial power in Rwanda was: a. Belgium 4. Hutu b. 1962 c. Approximately what % of the Tutsi population of Rwanda was displaced? a. a.

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8. What was the name of the peace agreement signed by the conflict parties in Rwanda in 1993? a. Harare Agreement b. Arusha Agreement c. Benin Agreement 9. Peacekeeping forces first arrived in Rwanda in: a. 1990 b. 1992 c. 1993 d. 1994 10. Failure to deploy a larger peacekeeping force in time to prevent the violence of 1994 was ascribed to: a. “bureaucratic inertia” in New York b. lack of information c. “Africa fatigue” amongst the main powers

Answer Key: 1-False; 2-c; 3-c; 4-b; 5-b; 6-b; 7-c; 8-b; 9-c; 10-c

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Exercise: Conflict Mapping
Aim: To enable the student to produce his/her own preliminary conflict map. Method: Using the on-line sources identified in Table 5-1, conduct a brief conflict mapping exercise using the mapping guide provided in this lesson. Do not attempt to develop a comprehensive map. We suggest that you take either part A of the map (to produce a background briefing), or part C (to provide a preliminary assessment of peacemaking activities). You may map one of the following conflicts, or a conflict of your choice. East Timor Kosovo Sierra Leone

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LESSON 6 EARLY WARNING AND CONFLICT PREVENTION
1. 2. 3. 4. Introduction The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep” Prevention The Prevention of Violent Conflict: Cases and Organisations Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP

In the past 20 years we have understood the need for military intervention where governments grossly violate human rights and the international order. In the next 20 years we must learn how to prevent conflict as well as how to intervene in them. - Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General Conflict, including ethnic conflict, is not unavoidable but can indeed be prevented. This requires, however, that the necessary efforts are made. Potential sources of conflict need to be identified and analysed with a view to their early resolution, and concrete steps must be taken to forestall armed confrontation. If these preventive measures are superseded by a sharpening of the conflict, then an early warning must be given in time for more rigorous conflict containment to take place. - Max van der Stoel, Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe High Commissioner on National Minorities War represents the failure of diplomacy. - Annonymous

Explore the strengths and weaknesses of a conflict-prevention strategy. Trace the cases where conflict prevention strategies have been applied. including the ideas of “light” and “deep” preventors of conflict.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 96 LESSON OBJECTIVES In this lesson conflict prevention and preventive diplomacy is defined as an important part of the wider conflict resolution process. After studying the material contained in this lesson. . Identify the organisations that have a capacity for conflict prevention. the student will be able to: Define the meanings and uses of the terms “conflict prevention” and “early warning”. The theoretical basis of conflict prevention is explained as are the ideas of early warning and specific factors which may prevent the outbreak of violent conflict are discussed. Organisations which have conflict prevention policies are identified and the first ever deployment of peacekeeping force in a conflict prevention role. is examined as a case study. Discuss the theory that informs these meanings. UNPREDEP in Macedonia. Consider the use of a conflict prevention policy in Macedonia where the first preventive deployment of peacekeeping forces took place.

The report defined preventive diplomacy as "action to prevent disputes from arising between parties. fire extinguishers. and the establishment of demilitarised zones. Following the end of the Cold War. preventive diplomacy) is the idea that action should be taken to prevent violent conflicts from breaking out in the first place. fact-finding missions. for example. instead. The Theory of Conflict Prevention: “Light” and “Deep” Prevention Active measures to prevent conflict can be divided into two types. Non-governmental organisations have also been involved in conflict prevention activities. argued that one of the UN' central aims must be "to seek to identify at the earliest possible stage situations that could produce conflict." It suggested that preventive diplomacy could involve: measures to build confidence. and try through diplomacy to remove sources of danger before violence results". for example. to prevent existing disputes from escalating into conflicts and to limit the spread of the latter when they occur. .Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 97 1. A new approach to peacekeeping emerged in 1993 with the deployment of a small mixed military and civilian force in Macedonia (UNPREDEP). In this Lesson. 2. We will also examine the organisations that are developing mechanisms of early warning and conflict prevention.General Boutros s Boutros-Ghali. One is aimed at preventing situations with a clear capacity for violence from degenerating into armed conflict. sends Special Representatives to potential conflict zones to gather facts. United Nations Secretary. fire alarms. and other measures designed to prevent the risk of fires raging out of control that is. The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). the preventive deployment of peacekeeping or deterrent military forces. rather than responding only once violence has broken-out. has deployed missions to potential conflict areas in Europe and the former-Soviet Union. to prevent the conflict in other areas of former-Yugoslavia from spreading into that small country. they invest in sprinklers. they introduce preventors of fire. often seeking to support “grass roots” peace organisations and conflict resolution processes. Introduction Conflict Prevention (or. We can compare conflict prevention to fire-fighting: the designers of buildings hope that the occupants will not start fires. In the first example of its kind.ethnic conflict. The UN Secretary-General. explore options for preventive diplomacy and mediate between parties. we will consider the theoretical basis for conflict prevention. the combination of a growing number of complex conflicts and improved prospects for great power co-operation led to new interest in conflict prevention. but they do not place all their trust on the good sense of the occupants. Many efforts have been made to put conflict prevention into practice. the UN Security Council authorised the deployment of the UNPREDEP preventive peacekeeping force to Macedonia before any violence had broken out. In his 1992 report An Agenda for Peace. We examine this case study in the Lesson. Many regional organisations are involved in conflict prevention activities. early warning of potential conflicts. and it has established a High Commissioner on National Minorities (HCNM) to prevent violent inter.

and community relations. or with remedying the situation that led to the crisis which the measures address. Examples of such action are diplomatic interventions. in contrast. light prevention (or. or a particular international relationship which lies at the root of conflict. operational prevention) generally means improving the tactical capacity to intervene in conflicts before they become violent. deep prevention (or. long-term missions and private mediation efforts. monitoring and assessing their progress with a view to assessing how close to violence they are. . it may mean engaging with issues of development. One line of approach aims to establish the circumstances under which wars are likely to take place. aims to address the root causes. 2. political culture.1 Early Warning Early warning aims to monitor particular areas of potential conflict. including underlying conflicts of interest and relationships. second.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 98 This is called light prevention. regional or strategic capacity to manage conflict. identification of the type of conflicts and location of the conflicts that could become violent. Its practitioners do not necessarily concern themselves with the root causes of the conflict. Their aim is to prevent latent or emerging conflicts from becoming severe armed conflicts.cold war conflicts. Within societies. this may mean addressing recurrent issues and problems in the international system. The Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict suggests a number of indicators of conflict proneness in states. In the context of post. There are two tasks involved here: first. listed below. Deep prevention. structural prevention) means building domestic. At the international level. and seek ways to act early enough to thwart potential conflict.

120.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 99 Indicators of States at Risk1 Demographic pressures (high infant mortality. p. Preventing Violent Conflict. capacity for joint action. p. T. ethnic groups sharing land. Risk Factors For Ethnopolitical Rebellion2 Group Incentives for Initiating Collective Action History of lost political autonomy Active economic and political discrimination against the group History of state repression Group Capacity for Sustained Collective Action Strength of group identity Extent of militant group mobilization Group Opportunities for Collective Action Number of adjacent countries in which armed conflicts are underway Active support from kindred groups in neighbouring countries 1 2 The Carnagie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict (1997). Ted Gurr identified three factors that affect the proneness of a communal group to rebel: collective incentives. 44. de-legitimisation of the state) Regimes of short duration Ethnic composition of the ruling elite differing from that of the population at large Deterioration or elimination of public services Sharp and severe economic distress (uneven economic development along ethnic lines. youth bulge. high population density. . rapid population change including refugee flows. Final Report. food or water shortage. Peoples versus States. Gurr (1998). and external opportunities. Washington. environmental pressures) Lack of democratic practices (human rights violations.R. chronic or sustained human flight Using data from his Minorities at Risk project. DC: USIP. lack of trade openness) A legacy of vengeance seeking group vigilance Massive. criminalisation. These are listed below. Under these general indicators can be found seven risk factors which have had significant positive correlation with ethnopolitical rebellions. New York: Carnegie Corporation.

For example. the presence of accepted legal or social norms capable of accommodating and peacefully transforming these formations.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 100 There are possible responses to these situations in specific cases. elite accommodation. social mobility. including: 1. federal structures. the indicators suggested above might call upon light preventors. consociational systems. 2. mutually de-escalatory “built-in mechanisms” of conflict management. flexible and accommodating state actions and strategies. Deep preventors include: 1. opportunities for groups to develop economically and culturally. 2. 2. research on ethnicity suggests that preventors of ethnic conflict include: 1. moderate “communal” actions and strategies on the part of the leaders of challenging groups. 4. multi-culturalism. . policies of social inclusion. 3. adequate political institutions and good governance cohesive social structures. 4. 5. In terms of the theory of early warning and conflict prevention. 6. 3. 3.

Clearly there is plenty of time for remedial action to be seriously undertaken. Alongside these. peace commissions. They range from official diplomacy (mediation. workshops. 2. possible preventors are listed.2 Light Intervention: Crisis Management and Preventive Diplomacy A number of policy options are available for light prevention.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 101 Table 6-1 outlines the main levels where factors generating conflict are identified. conflict resolution training. democracy Rule of law. Table 6-1: Factors Generating Conflict and Possible Preventors PREVENTORS OF NON-INTERSTATE CONFLICT Factors Generating Conflict Global Level Inappropriate systemic structures Regional Level Regional diasporas State Level Ethnic stratification Weak economies Authoritarian rule Human rights abuse Societal Level Weak societies Weak communities Polarised attitudes Elite/Individual Level Exclusionist policies Possible Preventors Changes in international order Regional security arrangements Consociational politics/federalism/autonomies Development Legitimacy. good offices. problem-solving workshops. conflict prevention centres. fact-finding. peace conferences. community relations Cross-cultural work Stronger moderates Gurr's study of minorities at risk shows that the time-lag between the first manifestations of organised protest and the onset of violent action is a matter of years. round-tables) to peace-making efforts by local actors (church-facilitated talks. debates . envoys. conciliation. hot lines) to non-official diplomacy (private mediation. message-carrying and creation of back-channels. human rights monitoring/protection Strengthening civic societies/institutions Round-tables. with an average of 13 years in liberal democracies.

In response. de-escalated the . outsiders can play an important supporting role. demilitarisation). and Western pressure on Latvia to revise its citizenship quotas. conditional offers of financial support). strengthen moderate leaders and counteract the influence of extremists. The Estonian outcome can be attributed to a combination of “light” and “deep” prevention. In Latvia. the OSCE High Commissioner. and made it clear that there was no intention of expelling non-citizens.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 102 between politicians. On the “light” side. the effective diplomatic interventions of Max van der Stoel and others. and between the Baltic and Russian citizens in the Baltic States. The Russian-speakers remained divided. Max van der Stoel. intervened over the threatened secession in 1993 of Narva in Estonia. and military measures (preventive peacekeeping. both between the new states and Russia (or the former-Soviet Union). and the EC called for consultation and restraint. which held extensive consultations with a wide range of parties. combined with the moderate positions taken by the Estonian President. economic measures (sanctions. He also set up a Round Table to promote dialogue between the ethnic groups. arms embargoes. which had better prospects of development and trade with the West than that of Russia. This includes a range of political measures (mediation with muscle. Estonian President Meri submitted the Estonian legislation to the OSCE and the Council of Europe for comments. The citizens of Narva were mostly Russians who felt that they would become disenfranchised and disempowered. Latvia. The Prevention of Violent Conflict: Cases and Organisations The aim of prevention is to strengthen likely preventors and reduce likely causes of war or mass violence. the OSCE and the Council of Europe called for amendments to the contested citizenship law. While recognising that the prevention of violent conflict is primarily a matter for indigenous peacemakers and peace builders within the potential conflict area. It was eventually defused in 1994 following a visit by President Clinton to Riga. a US-Russian summit. An example where the international environment has had positive effects on proneness to violent conflict has been the citizenship conflicts in the Baltic States. These de-escalatory steps proved sufficient to defuse the crisis. cross-party discussions). a similar crisis over citizenship quotas emerged in 1994. and allowed nonEstonians to vote in local elections. and Lithuania may have given rise to armed conflicts. but the majority of them saw their best hopes for the future in participating in the Estonian economy. He was supported by an OSCE long-duration mission based in three cities. attempts to influence the media). He went on to co-opt members of the Russian elite by granting citizenship to industrial and political leaders. mobilisation through regional and global organisations. 3. Powerful states are also able to apply positive and negative inducements in an effort to twist the arms of governments. In Estonia. and became serious as the Russian government refused to withdraw its troops from the country. a Russian agreement to withdraw its troops. emergency aid. The secession of Estonia. The modified Law on Aliens was adopted and gradually attention shifted from citizenship to economic issues. and he forwarded the proposed amendments to the Estonian parliament. Western governments.

and that high-level diplomatic interventions and bargaining would sometime be needed. the compromise over the central citizenship issue allowed the situation to be redefined in terms of access to economic opportunities instead of as an ethno-political struggle for control of the state. proposed improving its capacity to tackle problems at their roots in order to anticipate the outbreak of crises and contribute to the prevention and settlement of conflicts. The intervention of the OSCE High Commissioner was convenient.are matters of direct and legitimate concern to all participating states and do not belong exclusively to the internal affairs of the state concerned". . In all three cases. At a deeper level.1 The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) The OSCE is perhaps the best example of a co-operative security order that combines elements of “deep” and “light” prevention. measures to strengthen democracy and the rule of law.. the Latvia case demonstrated that the OSCE could still fail to prevent escalation.. 3.2 The European Union and the Council of Europe The European Union (EU) and the Council of Europe are also deeply involved in policies which impact on conflict prevention. and created time and political space for political movement. the Committee of Senior Officials. the Conflict Prevention Centre in Vienna (which manages long-duration missions). By this agreement member states gave the OSCE a legitimate basis to involve itself in ethnic and minority disputes. this gave European institutions some weight in the conflict. 3. and the High Commissioner on National Minorities and his staff. at its Lisbon Council. Crucially. introducing a measure of restraint and facilitating negotiation. it is a regime with wide geographical coverage. The EU. the membership of all the concerned parties in the OSCE. The EU has undertaken “deep” measures through: (1) support for economic infrastructure and economic development. the Baltic States and the Russian government were keen to avoid an armed conflict. based on a common set of principles and norms including recognition of state sovereignty and minority rights. Finally. created a legitimate framework for consultation and mediation. The High Commissioner has undertaken a preventive role in many disputes involving minorities. The OSCE states have also committed themselves to "identify the root causes of tension" and "provide for more flexible and active dialogue and better early warning and dispute settlement. and their acceptance of OSCE standards on citizenship and minority rights.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 103 crisis. On the one hand. Even then. but to be effective this wish had to be translated into practical measures and bridge-building institutions in the Baltic States. the West." These commitments have been institutionalised in powers delegated to the Chairman-in-Office. powerful third parties transformed an asymmetric conflict by balancing the relationship between the parties. Both the Baltic States and the Russian Federation sought entry into European institutions. What makes it remarkable is the agreement of member states that "the commitments undertaken in the field of the human dimension. even if they are not specifically designed for the purpose.

The OAU introduced the African Mechanism Apparatus for Preventing. with the agreement of the Congo government. in “light” conflict prevention through the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). in an air crash in 1994. disarmament of militias and an agreement on fresh elections over disputed seats. with mixed results. and the UN system's capacity is still regarded as weak. the OAS set up machinery to support democracies threatened with military coups to protect human rights and to monitor elections. It was activated in the same year in Brazzaville-Congo. although the strong consensus on non-intervention has limited the institutionalisation of an explicit conflict prevention policy. The mechanism has yet to be invoked in a situation where some violence has not broken-out. for example. ASEAN. the attention of the Secretary General and the Security Council is mainly focused on conflicts that are already violent. Managing and Resolving African Crises at its 1993 summit. the International Court for Former-Yugoslavia. 3. 3. For example.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 104 and (2) through its structured Europe. where an ethnically-based post-election conflict had broken-out. and the Middle East. Although. Although some steps to establish a capacity for prevention have been taken. the Mediterranean. has set up a Regional Security Forum which aims to preserve the consensus of the South-East Asian governments and prevent inter. economic sanctions. Sahnoun's intervention led to negotiations in Gabon. This can be seen as a form of preventive diplomacy. the procedure allows the OAU Secretary General to undertake mediation and fact-finding missions and to send special envoys to conflict-prone areas. although in each case local regional politics and political culture have influenced how the concept is interpreted. a cease-fire. already with some violence.3 Other Regional Organisations Several regional organisations have committed themselves to prevention in principle. and its diplomatic presence in Africa. A notable example was Ahmedou Ould Abdullah's work in Burundi. only 40 officials in . policy on recognition. which facilitated power-sharing arrangements and helped to calm the situation after the death of the Hutu president. Ntarymira. The organisation helped to promote a settlement in Cambodia and sponsored significant initiatives in relation to the Spratly Islands dispute. The UN Secretary General has powers under Article 99 of the Charter to "bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security. Secretary-General Salim appointed Mahmoud Sahnoun as Special Representative to mediate between the parties. It is also involved. Partnership and Cooperation Agreements and the Stability Pact. there has been more inclination to avoid conflict than to address or resolve it. In Latin America. when the conflicts involve separatism.state conflicts.4 The United Nations The United Nations is also committed to conflict prevention." The Secretary-General frequently operates through Special Representatives. it is implicitly part of the regime that the states do not involve themselves in one another's internal conflicts.

This was an area of mixed peoples. to strengthen the UN's role in early warning. established by the Norwegian government in 1996 for the use of the Secretary General. which had triggered the disintegration of Yugoslavia in 1987. destabilising Macedonia. International Financial Institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are now playing an increasingly central role in deep prevention through the tying of financial assistance to conditions of good governance. drawing in Albania. The integration of UNICEF. of at least one meeting with the heads of major regional organisations during each term of office to discuss potential violence in the regions and possible preventive strategies. protection of human rights. The Secretary General should use the fund to expand the pool of people to serve as envoys and special representatives and to provide resources for training and support of their missions. weak states and contested governments. a significant number of states hold serious reservations about an international prevention regime. It has recommended the following reforms: More frequent use of Article 99 of the UN Charter to bring potentially violent situations to the attention of the Security Council. The Kosovo conflict. and conflict prevention. The UN lacks sufficient institutional machinery and personnel to turn its stated commitment to preventive diplomacy into an effective reality.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 105 the UN secretariat were involved with prevention in 1995. on the grounds of state sovereignty and non. It was a sign of the seriousness with which this was taken that President Bush . the Albanian community (90% of the population) had been living under Serb police rule since the withdrawal of autonomy in 1989. The convening.intervention. The Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict is a strong advocate of enhancing the role of the United Nations. by the Secretary-General.1 Macedonia After the war broke out in Yugoslavia. Greater use of good offices to help defuse developing crises. UNDP. Moreover. Macedonia was a weak state. there were strong grounds for fearing that it could spread to the southern Balkans. The formation of a private sector advisory committee to draw more systematically on the expertise and insights of civil society for preventive action. remained intense. 4. Conflict Prevention Case Study: UNPREDEP 4. More assertive use of the convening power of the Office of the Secretary General to assemble “friends” groups to help co-ordinate the international response. and Albania's chaotic transition from communism gave many grounds for concern. and UNHCR's concerns for conflict prevention with a more activist UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. It was feared that an ignition of the ethno-national conflict could lead to a domino effect. and starting a new Balkan war in which Greece and Turkey might enter on opposite sides. In Kosovo. Encouragement of member governments to contribute to the Fund for Preventive Action.

the UN deployed its first preventive peackeeping operation in Macedonia in January 1993.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 106 warned President Milosevic in 1992 that the US was prepared to use force against Serbian troops in the event of any conflict caused by Serbian action. NGO formation and awareness of international human rights instruments. It was constituted as a separate peacekeeping force with headquarters in Skopje. the government has adopted some of his suggestions. the UN force did at least check a number of probes by Serbian forces along the Macedonian border. Although the census had been monitored and organised by the Council of Europe and the European Union. as part of a general restructuring of UN peacekeeping forces in former-Yugoslavia.2 The United Nations Preventive Deployment Force The United Nations Preventive Deployment Force (UNPREDEP) was created under UNSCR 983 of 31 March 1995. These opposition groups refused to participate in the Parliament. conflict resolution training. Turks and Vlachs). who felt that the true proportion of Albanians in the population was higher. initially. citizenship and local government. problem-solving workshops. His visit in February 1995. political situation. and even if the long-term future remains uncertain. 4. President Clinton repeated President Bush’s warning to Milosevic. had a series of claims and aspirations which they felt were not being adequately addressed within the existing political system. indirectly. Macedonia. convened national youth meetings and undertook a number of projects to encourage bridge-building. though these also had been monitored by the Council of Europe and the OSCE. in the internal ethnic relations of Macedonia. and provide some prevention capacity. these two groups constituted 67% and 23% of the population. of 500 Canadians. In addition. the main rift was between ethnic Macedonians and ethnic Albanians. resulting in a fragile democracy which. the results of elections held in October 1994 were also challenged by opposition groups. although their breadth of coverage is inevitably limited. These measures help to build cross-community relations. after lives were lost in a demonstration over the unauthorised Albanian university at Tetovo. Serbs. and Search for Common Ground have initiated educational projects. in the context of .) Whether Milosevic ever intended to threaten Macedonia is unclear. UNPREDEP also became involved. UNPREDEP consisted. The High Commissioner on National Minorities has frequently visited Macedonia to discuss educational and employment policies. Although a variety of ethnic groups (including Rhomas. In response to these warning signs. A UN Special Representative attached to the force held regular meetings. major internal violence has been averted. the Center for Inter-Ethnic Relations. The Government also invited an OSCE Mission which participates in these meetings and monitors the internal. He also contributed to an inter-ethnic round-table. later replaced by 700 Scandinavians. respectively. as well as the regional. While ethnic relations remain tense and society remains polarised along ethnic lines. (In July the US sent 300 troops to UNPROFO. reduced tensions. According to the 1994 census. these figures were disputed by ethnic Albanian leaders. and media projects designed to build bridges. NGOs such as the Catholic Relief Services. with the political parties. and in 1993.

Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 107 the unstable economic conditions prevailing in the country. Some of the factors which are said to have contributed to the success of UNPREDEP are: the presence of a US battalion in the mission. These demands included recognition of distinctive status as a constituent nation. signalling an American military and political interest. Macedonia's border with Serbia was the subject of long-standing dispute. Similarly. and the need for Macedonia to build up its own indigenous defence capabilities. the need was explained primarily in terms of external security concerns: namely the need for the normalisation of relations with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. which had become a de facto buffer zone between potential conflict parties. Macedonia and the UNPREDEP deployment were radically affected by the worsening situation in Kosovo. Nevertheless. By the late-1990s. the need for stability and sustainability around the peace process in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although the internal situation has not been resolved. and that NATO overshadowed UNPREDEP. By July 1994. felt unable to accommodate to the demands of ethnic Albanians. When the Government of Macedonia requested the continuation of UNPREDEP. Macedonia became the base for the build-up of heavily armed NATO troops. proportional representation in significant public institutions. but regular monitoring by UNPREDEP suggested that the risk was in fact low. UNPREDEP's border identification and verification also contributed significantly to confidence-building. but proved to be the spearhead force that re-took Kosovo on the ground from Serbian forces. reacting against Macedonia's recognition of Taiwan. the conduct of University-level education in the Albanian language and the foundation of an Albanian language University. the operation is widely regarded as successful. From 1 February 1996. While the ruling coalition under President Gligorov passed a number of reforms supporting democratisation. The UN commander proposed an administrative UN boundary. the mandate was renewed and UNPREDEP became an independent mission reporting directly to New York. and to the security of Macedonia. the presence of experienced Nordic . Some have claimed that the use of NATO in Macedonia has effectively destroyed the only example of preventive diplomacy. following the termination of the missions in Bosnia and Croatia. initially called the “Northern Limit of the Area of Operations” (NLAOO). but generally referred to as the “UN Line”. in 1994 the assessment of the US State Department was that there was a significant risk of the conflict spreading if there was a mass exodus of ethnic Albanians from the Kosovo region of Serbia. through Macedonia and on to the Greek border. This was to serve as a base for a force to “extract” OSCE observers from Kosovo. For example. both Serbian and Macedonian patrols had come to respect this boundary. namely UNPREDEP. From March 1999. the substantial demands have not been met. some observers believed in March 1995 that military tension in the Southern Balkans was high and that a number of Serb units were massed along the border with Macedonia. In February of 1999. Such a move would threaten conflict between Greece and Turkey. China. vetoed the extension of UNPREDEPs mandate. as the efforts to secure a negotiated settlement to the conflict in Kosovo stalled. and recognition of Albanian as a second language. it is generally agreed that this experiment in preventive deployment has been successful and that UNPREDEP has made a significant contribution to stability in the region. UNPREDEP was able to authoritatively deny this and thus contributed to de-escalation.

political. which has provided an objective knowledge of events. This monitoring has enabled valuable knowledge of risk and risk assessment to be developed. . economic and social situation.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 108 troops. and the continued monitoring of the military. helping to counter rumour and the potential for conflict escalation which it may have generated.

(Chapter 4.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 109 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. NJ: Roman and Littlefield. Cambridge: Polity Press. Peck. . (1996). Contemporary Conflict Resolution. and Woodhouse (1999). C. Washington. 95-127) Lund. "Preventing Violent Conflict". (1998). Preventing Violent Conflicts. M. Sustainable Peace: The Role of the United Nations and Regional Organisations in Preventing Conflict. Ramsbotham. pp. DC: United States Institute of Peace. Lanham.

List them. Article 9 b. Michael Lund c. Effective conflict prevention is therefore very impossible.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 110 LESSON 6 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. negotiations with elite leaders c. mediation or other interventions designed to arrest armed conflict b. 5. amongst the following individuals. The Gulf War 2. Stephen Stedman b. diplomatic. The UN Secretary General has powers under which article of the Charter to "bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security"? a. the use of human rights monitors 4. Article 99 . Which of the following phrases best describes “deep” or structural conflict prevention? a. military. The Cold War c. is associated with the effective use of conflict prevention policies in the Baltic States? a. the strategic capacity to address the root causes of conflict b. "Conflicts typically have long gestation times. The Second World War b. According to the research of Gurr. "Tensions in communities can erupt into armed conflict with very little warning. long-term development policies 3." b. The support for conflict prevention increased following the end of : a. Gurr identified seven risk factors that are positively correlated with the outbreak of armed conflict. which of these statements is true? a. Which of the following phrases best describes “light” or operational conflict prevention? a." 6. Who. Article 19 c. the coverage of conflict in the media c. Max van der Stoel 7. It is therefore possible to watch them developing and to take preventive action to stop them becoming violent.

3-a. strength of group identity. European Union. Answer Key: 1-b. Kosovo b. List two reasons that help to explain the success of UNPREDEP. ASEAN. 2-a. The first preventive deployment of UN peacekeeping forces took place in: a. balance of US troops with experienced Nordic peacekeepers. history of state repression. 7-c. which have developed policies and capacities for conflict prevention. OAU. 4-history of political autonomy. 6-c. OAS. Council of Europe . Macedonia 9. 9-presence of US troops. Estonia c.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 111 8. extent of militant group mobilisation. 10. 5-b. 8-c. Name at least three organisations (other than the UN). number of adjacent countries in which armed conflicts are underway. active economic and political discrimination against the group. continued monitoring of militar/politcal/economic/social situations. active support from kindred groups in neighbouring countries. 10-OSCE.

“Alchemy for a New World Order: Overselling Preventive Diplomacy”. Talking will achieve nothing: only the threat or use of massive force. he argued.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 112 Exercise: Assessing the Strengths and Weaknesses of Conflict Prevention Strategies Objective: To encourage the student to develop a better understanding of conflict prevention through an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of its capabilities. Method: The UN is not equipped to establish a military presence on the ground in a crisis. Social scientists are making useful prognostications of probable precipitants of violence. conflict prevention will mean that “one simply founders earlier in a crisis instead of later. Below. May/June. there are cases where preventive actions have been beneficial. 3 . which was perpetrated by a group that refused to cede power. It is unlikely that Western leaders will be able to mobilize force before the pictures of violence are on television. Although the consequences of actions cannot always be predicted and may turn out to be harmful. Prevention is. therefore. conflict prevention has its critics as well as its supporters. 14-20. and this work should not be ignored. In this exercise you should carefully consider both positions and. Actions designed to prevent conflict may trigger it. Stedman (1995). but not when they will become violent. Providing aid and long-term development of itself can do nothing to prevent genocides such as that in Rwanda.Lund Michael Lund responded by arguing that Stedman has caricatured the arguments of proponents of preventive diplomacy and chosen examples to overestimate the obstacles. Where early warnings have been taken seriously. we summarise a debate between a sceptic (Stephen Stedman) and a proponent (Michael Lund). The Stedman-Lund Debate Stedman In an article published in Foreign Affairs. Without well-defined interests. Foreign Affairs. in developing a capacity for rapidly deploying preventive peacekeeping forces. pp. Conflict prevention is severely disabled without a capacity for rapid response. taking into account what you have learned about Macedonia in this lesson. Conclude your assessment with an evaluation of whether you think the UN should invest more. 74. which risks prolonged intervention. There is a range of S. There has been increasing support for the establishment of a UN rapid reaction force of 5. they have enabled conflicts to be prevented.”3 vs.000-10. will convince individuals such as Savimbi in Angola and Karadzic in Bosnia. risky and costly.000 troops so that the UN can respond more effectively to emerging crises. To focus on prevention ignores the role that conflict plays in driving political change. However. Social scientists can pinpoint situations of risk. or less. draw-up a balance sheet listing the main strengths and weaknesses of conflict prevention strategies. Some conflicts have to be intensified before they are resolved. Stephen Stedman argued that the concept of preventive diplomacy is oversold. clear goals and a judgement about costs and risks.

4 4 M. which may be higher. If existing ambassadors and field staff were to turn their efforts to proactive responses to conflict. they should be compared with the costs of non-intervention and late intervention. US warnings to Milosevic were effective in preventing a spread of the Balkan wars through to the end of 1997. 160-163. The stakes in potential crises are too high to approach them “with cavalier analyses” of a few unfortunate cases. Lund (1995). the issues might not even come to the attention of the crisis decision-makers. For example.Lesson 6/Early Warning and Conflict Prevention 113 intermediate actions between talking and use of massive force. “Underrating Preventive Diplomacy” Foreign Affairs. July/August. pp. The public is not necessarily unwilling to endorse preventive diplomacy: the dispatch of US soldiers to join UNPREDEP in Macedonia passed largely without comment. Although early intervention has costs. . which Stedman ignores.

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[T]he situation of peacekeepers today is much like the situation of commanders on the Western Front in 1916.LESSON 7 PEACEKEEPING AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION IN WAR ZONES 1. To push the analogy somewhat. new techniques of peacekeeping. 5. now permit peacekeepers to take the offensive to restore peace. 2.David Last. Theory. 7. new tools of war were becoming available to commanders in 1916 that would permit them to take the offensive if they could only adjust their thinking about how to use their forces. Introduction The Contingency-Complementarity Model Peacekeeping in the Contingency Model Defining Peacekeeping The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s Criticisms of Peacekeeping in the 1990s New Thinking About Peacekeeping Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution . who were bogged down in defensive operations.. In the same way. 6. .. Doctrine and Practice of Conflict De-escalation in Peacekeeping Operations . 4. 3. 8. taken from conflict resolution theory and civilian experience.

In a conflict resolution perspective. Discuss the stages of conflict escalation and de-escalation.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 116 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson examines in detail the role of peacekeeping in active war zones. . After studying the material contained in this lesson. including consent-promoting techniques. Trace the historical emergence of peacekeeping as a tool of peaceful conflict resolution. as is the development of new thinking which led to the concept of peace support operations in the 1990s. Discuss some of the criticisms of peacekeeping during this period and the consequent development of new thinking about the nature of peacekeeping. Its role in these strategies is explained with the use of a model referred to as the contingencycomplementarity model. peacekeeping is seen as one of several intervention strategies. Although this entails a more militarily robust form of peacekeeping the conflict resolution role is still integral as peacekeeping forces need to find ways of promoting consent and relating effectively to the civilian and political efforts to restore peace in the area of conflict. The development of peacekeeping from the traditional missions of the 1950s to the more complex missions of the 1990s. Further explore the role and uses of conflict resolution techniques in peace support operations. The criticisms of these missions are reviewed. including the emergence of peace support operations doctrine. Summarise the development and expansion of peacekeeping roles in the 1990s. the student will be able to: Understand the contingency-complementarity model of conflict resolution and the role of peacekeeping within it.

Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 117 1. needs. exhibits either objective or subjective elements more strongly. Despite this “harder” definition of peacekeeping. the difficulty of intervening in on-going wars is exemplified in the ambivalent roles of UN peacekeepers in Bosnia and Somalia. improved skills for dealing with them. and a comprehensive set of responses. in Bosnia the UN was accused of doing too little. we consider how conflict resolution concepts and techniques are increasingly relevant to peacekeeping. it is unlikely that any one approach to conflict resolution will be able to deal with all of them. Working within the contingency approach means employing an appropriate intervention strategy that has been shown to be most effective at particular points in a conflict process. Also. This includes the nature of the constituencies involved. The Contingency-Complementarity Model A contingency approach to conflict intervention is based on the assumption that all conflicts have both subjective and objective elements. Protracted social conflicts are complex processes composed of many elements. 2. each of which needs to be addressed if we are to understand and resolve them. which focus on objective elements of conflict. Because many aspects need to be addressed. protect humanitarian aid convoys. the latter was absorbed into a factional conflict as one of the warring parties. and relationships. . the more likely interventions can be timely and appropriate. This knowledge is gained by in-depth analysis of past interventions. Yet. intervention types such as problem-solving. In order to do this we need to understand that peacekeeping is one of several intervention strategies. take action against militias who ignore cease-fires or who go against the provisions of peace agreements. in Somalia of doing too much. In response to the complex nature of contemporary conflict. will be more effective at other points. depending on the level. Part of the response has been to develop more robust concepts of peacekeeping whereby forces are adequately armed to protect civilians. In this lesson we consider some of the criticisms of the performance of peacekeeping operations in recent years. The more that such information is available. the interests of the parties. which focus more on subjective elements of conflict. and their belief systems. including peacekeeping. perceptions. As a result. all conflicts go through an escalation and de-escalation process which. This insight gave rise to the idea that effective third-party conflict intervention requires an increased understanding of the situation. Intervention types such as negotiation. Introduction In this Lesson we focus on the role of peacekeeping in active war-zones. The former was tasked with protecting safe areas without being given the means to do so. Ronald Fisher and Loreleigh Keashly developed the contingency-complementarity model of conflict resolution. We then trace how thinking about the roles of peacekeeping has changed in response to these criticisms. will be more effective at certain points in the conflict.

emphasised issues.) While the stages appear linear and one-dimensional. There is a range of peacemaking strategies that may be employed. Fisher and Keashly (1991). It is possible for parties in a conflict to go back and forth through the stages.1 Stages of Conflict and Intervention Strategies Fisher and Keashley’s model consists of four stages of conflict escalation: (1) discussion. including conciliation. arbitration.J. (3) segregation. this is not the case. (A de-escalation process moves in reverse through the same stages.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 118 2. and (4) destruction. 28(1): 29-42. (See Table 7-11) The appropriate type of intervention is “contingent” (dependent) upon the stage of escalation or de-escalation that the conflict has reached and according to the emphasis that each gives to objective and subjective aspects. the nature of the relationship between the conflict parties. different levels in a conflict and among parties may be at different stages of escalation or de-escalation. Journal of Peace Research. possible outcomes and preferred strategies for intervention. Each stage is characterised by changes in six factors: models of communication. mutual perceptions. Also. problem-solving and peacekeeping. mediation. “The Potential Complementarity of Mediation and Consultation Within a Contingency Model of Third Party Intervention”. (2) polarisation. . 1 Adapted from R. negotiation.

The complementary strategy would offer to follow the coercive intervention with softer mediation . it might be appropriate to first control the violence with a powerful mediator.and resolution-oriented) at different levels (unofficial/non-governmental and official/governmental) and stages will be “complementary”: together. but should involve multi-track interventions. or other forms of third party intervention – to move back down the stages of escalation. it will temporarily improve the relationship between the parties so that other strategies can be employed.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 119 TABLE 7-1: Stages of Conflict Escalation and De-escalation and Intervention Strategies Communication Between Disputants Perceptions of Disputants Possible Outcomes Recognised by Disputants Disputants Preferred Method of Conflict Management Third Party Intervention Strategy DIMENSIONS STAGES Conciliation (assist communication)De velopment Aid (reduce inequity) Consultation (improve relationship) Mediation with muscle (control hostility) Arbitration Discussion Discussion and Debate Relatively accurate. For example. such as a governmental representative from a major power. rather than seeing these as competing or contradictory. The use of multiple interventions (settlement. yet. a peacekeeping intervention to control the outright violence of the destruction phase of conflict should be followed up by a programme of third party involvement that assists the parties – through mediation. benign Rigid and simplified negative stereotypes Negative stereotypes cast in terms of good and evil Win-Win Joint decisionmaking Polarisation Reliance on interpretation. who can offer rewards and punishments to the parties in order to pressure them to agree. they will be more effective than a single strategy to de-escalate the conflict. Such an agreement will not last very long. In the case of a civil war with ethnic or religious dimensions. less direct interchange Mutual compromise Negotiation Segregation Use of threats Win-Lose Defensive competition Destruction Absence of direct communication and attacks on the enemy Other party viewed as nonhuman Lose-Lose Outright attempts at selfdestruction Peacekeeping (control violence) The model provides for the use of a variety of third party methods. This work has reinforced the idea that conflict resolution should not involve simple “one-dimensional” procedures. conciliation. whether mediation initiatives or problem-solving workshops.

peacekeeping and Peace Building processes. Fetherston (1994). Peacekeeping. developing co-operation and communication). This involves peacekeeping actors working in the area of operation at the micro-level facilitating settlement processes or facilitating resolution activities (building trust. third parties have a much deeper and more sustained relationship with the conflict and the conflict parties. 3. without co-ordination with other intervention strategies and without the motivation to contribute to an intervention process beyond violence control.B. not simply matched to an idealised stage of conflict as if following a recipe. peacemaking and Peace Building.B. including the possibility of addressing multiple aspects of the conflict simultaneously. Of course. contemporary peacekeeping is part of a two-tiered approach. Thus. The underlying premise is that the UN has many of the tools required to use a contingency model. Peacekeeping in a Contingency Model A. Peacemaking is basically equivalent to mediation and Peace Building and can be seen as a broader version of consultancy (or consultancy can be seen as one aspect of Peace Building).1 Peacekeeping in the Escalation Sequence Peacekeeping is used only after a conflict has escalated to Stage 4. will not achieve a resolution outcome. many of the activities that a contingency model points to are activities that are being carried out by peacekeeping actors on the ground with or without a planned programme. London: Macmillan. In this model. (See Diagram 7-12) 2 Diagram from A. She suggests that Fisher and Keashley’s model can be compared with the trilateral activities of the UN -. It is important to realise that each conflict has unique characteristics and the choice of intervention must be guided by an informed analysis of the particular conflict. and co-ordinating with peacemaking and Peace Building efforts at the macro-level. 3. Fetherston has analysed the third party role of peacekeeping from within the framework of a contingency-complementarity model. Also. predictable processes. p. when a conflict is defined as destructive. . the contingency-complementarity model must be flexible. 151. Once conflicts reach the destructive stage.peacekeeping. there is a danger that models like the contingency-complementarity model reduce conflict and third party intervention to static.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 120 or a problem-solving approach to further improve the relationship and assist in resolving the root causes of the conflict. Towards a Theory of United Nations Peacekeeping. they become more difficult to manage and require peacemaking. and addressing the same aspect with different approaches over time and as its dynamic demands. Within the contingency model.

Three roles are important here and relate to the expansion of peacekeeping activities: ..Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 121 DIAGRAM 7-1: A Contingency Model Applied to Peacekeeping This means that peacekeeping actors act as an interface between official (Track 1) peacemaking efforts (e.g. official mediation) and unofficial (Track 2 or Track 3) Peace Building efforts (including third party consultancy and supporting/co-ordinating local Peace Building activities).

Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 122 1. since 1945 peacekeeping has been the technique most frequently used by and associated with the UN to terminate conflicts and establish peace. the facilitation of an actual settlement and resolution process.” Chapter VI goes on to state that “The Security Council shall. Once peacemaking and Peace Building at the micro-level become significant in the minds of military and civilian actors. the roles do not function in a vacuum. enquiry. Peacekeeping operations have been described by Dag Hammarskjöld as “Chapter 6 ½ initiatives”. resort to regional agencies or arrangements. the facilitation of an atmosphere that is conducive to negotiations and settlement and. . the League of Nations also conducted activities that were comparable to peacekeeping. first of all. or other peaceful means of their own choice. While they may engage in settlement and resolution activities. but there are occasions when it is used by international and regional organisations. The essence of peacekeeping can be seen in operations that pre-dated the formation of the UN in 1945. so much so that the organisation was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1988 for its peacekeeping activities. During this time. arbitration. after the First World War multinational military bodies were used to establish and administer the new frontiers of Europe agreed by peace treaties after the war. but must respond to the needs of the parties in the conflict. but without enforcement powers. judicial settlement. 3. in peacekeeping practice. 4. The Blue Helmets. Chapter VI proposes that parties to a dispute “shall. seek a solution by negotiation. which provides the base level activity for peacekeeping and precedes the application of either of the other two roles. For example. Peacekeeping is not mentioned in the UN Charter. in the long-term. more direct efforts once a stable situation has been achieved. the mediation of settlement packages or the implementation of a large-scale socio-economic programme usually takes place at the macro-level. However. when it deems necessary. yet it is often described as falling between Chapter VI and Chapter VII. conciliation. Peacekeeping is a function of the UN. with peacekeeping laying the groundwork for later. The second and third roles are more limited for military and civilian actors at the micro-level. undertaken by the United Nations to help maintain or restore international peace and security in areas of conflict”. they must co-ordinate local initiatives and become part of a bottom-up process (see Lesson 8). it makes sense for military peacekeepers to co-ordinate activities on the ground in the early stages of the de-escalation process. Defining Peacekeeping The official United Nations account of peacekeeping. that is. This may be seen as pre-Peace Building. Finally. the role of conflict control. defines peacekeeping as follows: “an operation involving military personnel. 2. it is possible to carry out such activities in a co-ordinated way and it is possible to train military and civilian peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel to fulfil these roles. mediation. which relates to the first role. movement toward resolution. Because of the unstable security in war-zones.

UNPROFOR in Bosnia. including the use of armed forces if necessary. and Canadian Lester B. to encourage hostile parties to seek a negotiated settlement. there were only five operations in the field: three in the Middle East.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 123 call upon the parties to settle their dispute by such means. Nine of these were “traditional” missions. the principle of control of peacekeeping operations by the Secretary General. the blue print for a non-violent. In 1988. 4. While the UN was involved in peacekeeping as early as 1948. These principles have been contested and challenged. For most of these years. the principle of voluntary contributions of contingents from small. to maintain or restore international peace and security. Typically. and UNFICYP in Cyprus. when the Cold War was coming to an end. UNTAC in Cambodia. the principle of the consent of the parties to the dispute for the establishment of mission. that is they were mandated to fulfil a wide variety of unfamiliar roles in. The principles. they proved durable enough over a period of 30 years for Brian Urquhart to describe the document in which they are defined as “a conceptual masterpiece in a completely new field. the principle of impartiality. prevention (UNPREDEP in Macedonia). Article 99 gives the Secretary General power to carry out “good offices missions”. Pearson (General Assembly President 1952-1953). and in many missions. However. deployed in 1956 in response to the Suez crisis. 3. for example. a small observer mission in Kashmir.” Chapter VII gives the Security Council power to enforce decisions. 17 operations were deployed. intervention in active war-zones (UNOMIL in Liberia. UNOSOM in Somalia). international military operation”. while eight were “multifunctional”. defined by UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld and. 2. after British and French forces invaded Egypt. 5. 5. By December 1994. these operations were composed of lightly armed national troop contingents. UNEF I served as a precedent for all subsequent missions. as well as post-settlement Peace Building (ONUSAL in El Salvador. peacekeeping was restricted to the monitoring of borders and buffer zones after cease-fires were agreed. particularly in the debate about the nature and efficacy of peacekeeping in post-Cold War conflicts. the principle of non-use of force except in self defence. were: 1. the first explicitly labeled peacekeeping mission was the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF I). . It established a set of principles that still define the essence of peacekeeping. 13 peacekeeping operations were established (13 between 1948 and 1978 but none between 1978 and 1988). ONUMOZ in Mozambique). With the end of the Cold War came a dramatic increase in the number of peacekeeping operations. including fact-finding and inquiry. The Expansion of Peacekeeping in the 1990s During the Cold War period. the eve of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the United Nations. neutral countries to participate in the force.

civilian police. the increase in the number of peacekeeping operations in the post-Cold War world has been accompanied by a change in their very nature. their composition: peacekeepers now come from a medley of sources (military. crowd control). playing an important role somewhere between the military and civilian actors. disarmament and demobilisation of combatants. Fundamentally.. There is also a sizeable civilian component sometimes outnumbering the military component. cantonment. The civilian component can be subdivided into two main groupings. and human rights issues. international police monitors assist in the creation of secure environments and the maintenance of public order.g. the military component serves in a (mutually) supporting role. and advising local law enforcement authorities on organisational. UNHCR. the latter being military observers. there are non-governmental . establishing and maintaining a judicial system. It includes both armed and unarmed soldiers. there are inter-governmental organisations (IGOs). administrative. 5. OAU.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 124 Thus. The military component is primarily responsible for such tasks as: monitoring and verification of cease-fires. training.. regional organisations (e. Firstly. or organisations that are mandated by agreements drawn up between two or more states. provision of security for UN and other international activities in support of a peace process. the land. and diplomatic) nations and cultures. and multinational/multicultural. WFP. Operating under authority from the UN Security Council. more specifically: their function: the single function associated with traditional operations has evolved into a multiplicity of tasks. Firstly. overseeing of the withdrawal of foreign forces. Contemporary peacekeeping can be appropriately characterised as multilateral. This includes all UN agencies (e. A civilian police component has become increasingly involved in peacekeeping operations. monitoring. multidimensional. OSCE). OAS. the operation has a military component. mine awareness education and mine clearance. UNDP). Their tasks include: public security responsibilities (law enforcement work. maintaining a secure environment in which the civilian components can work. as well as the International Committee of the Red Cross/Red Crescent (ICRC). UNICEF. their application: operations have been established to respond to the new breed of conflict in areas not previously recognised.1 Multilateral Peacekeeping Multilateralism refers to the situation within an operation that involves a number of levels of activity. naval and air forces contributed by UN member states.g. Secondly.

3 Multidimensional Peacekeeping Contemporary peacekeeping missions are multidimensional: they incorporate tasks and responsibilities beyond those associated with traditional peacekeeping. a humanitarian element responsible for the delivery of humanitarian aid (food and other emergency relief supplies). many current peacekeeping operations now include military. humanitarian. its varied understandings of the conflict situation. (See Lesson 9. these operations are variously called “multidimensional operations”. or “peace support operations”. These functions are described in Table 7-2 . and legal. a human rights element that monitors the human rights situation. investigates specific cases of alleged human rights violations. resettling displaced persons. which lies in the effective coercive influence it can exercise over belligerents.2 Multinational/Multicultural Peacekeeping Multinationalism and multiculturalism reminds us that a peacekeeping force is assembled by a multiplicity of troop-contributing nations. the civilian component can be further divided to include several sub-components: a political element responsible for the political guidance of the overall peace process. ideological. political. including assisting in the rehabilitation of existing political institutions and promoting national reconciliation. “wider peacekeeping”. as well as educating the public about electoral processes and helping to develop grass-roots democratic institutions. and promotes human rights. Each nation or agency comes to the operation with its own political and cultural background. and its own diverse approaches and techniques. and reintegration of ex-combatants. In contrast to the strength of the military component. 5. Thus. The post-1988 deployments are being re-defined under new forms of military doctrine seeking to elaborate the principles under which they should operate. implementing refugee repatriation programmes. “second generation peacekeeping operations’. France to Nepal. scientific and technical. the civilian component is derived from a diverse range of nations. from Australia to Guinea Bissau. Additionally. an electoral element that monitors and verifies all aspects and stages of an electoral process and co-ordinates the technical assistance of the process. economic. the civilian component’s factor of strength may be diplomatic. Although there are a variety of ways in which their roles are classified by different authorities. and humanitarian functions. national and international organisations that are constituted separately from the government of the country in which they are founded. the United States to Uruguay. “second generation multinational forces”.) 5.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 125 organisations (NGOs).

ONUC in the Congo and UNIFIL in Lebanon).Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 126 Table 7-2: Military. Criticisms of peacekeeping in the 1990s While functions have diversified. By the end of this period peacekeeping was also the most controversial activity which the UN engaged in. however. they have been deployed in internal wars or complex political emergencies. peacekeeping operations established since 1956 (under the Hammarskjold-Pearson principles) have generally operated in “permissive environments” where they have the consent and support of host governments for their presence. In these situations consent may be partial. . defined as situations of civil and international war. supporting and protecting regional safe havens and other Protected areas Assisting in refugee repatriation Monitoring refugee flow Logistical support for humanitarian projects including transport. the contexts and environments in which the missions are deployed have also become more complex. There has been widespread criticism of the UN. and conditions of lawlessness and violence — where militias and paramilitary groups act autonomously — mean that UN agencies are often confronted and opposed. peacekeeping became the most visible activity of the UN. Political and Humanitarian Functions of Post-Cold War Peacekeeping FUNCTIONS OF POST-COLD WAR PEACEKEEPING Military Cease-fire observation and monitoring Maintaining buffer zones Disarming warring factions Regulating the disposition of forces Preventing infiltration Preventing civil war Verifying security agreements Supervising cantonment Mine clearance Training/re-forming military units Political Upholding law and order Helping to establish viable government Helping to maintain independent status Coping/negotiating with non-government entities Election administration Exercising temporary authority Providing security and helping to re-establish economic life for the local populace Management and arbitration of local disputes Confidence-building measures Training police forces Humanitarian Protecting aid convoys Protecting relief/delivery workers Providing humanitarian aid Establishing. Increasingly. Although there have been exceptions (for example. sometimes on practical grounds but mainly. Between 1989 and 1994. medical and engineering Verifying human rights agreements 6.

these criticisms should be set beside the many positive accounts offered by contributing governments and by the United Nations Secretariat. These difficulties may be at least in part. to improve co-ordination between New York and the field operations. Many authorities have identified priorities where organisation reform is needed. the result of the lack of direction from the centre in New York. i. In Cambodia and Somalia. and to develop central training guidance and standards have been seriously considered and. For example. Operations have suffered from unclear and ambiguous chains of command both within missions and between the mission and the Secretariat in New York. These critiques suggest that military. While some critics have pointed to organisational inefficiency. peacekeeping poses complex logistical problems. communications between the military. to some degree.e. Reforms to improve the central management of UN peacekeeping from New York. on questioning the nature and viability of peacekeeping itself. and humanitarian objectives should not necessarily be inextricably combined and that peacekeeping should go “back to basics”. At both levels. Some have distinguished between problems of readiness (mounting and deployment of the force) and operational problems (continuous support in the field). others have provided damning accounts of the inefficiency and corruption of aspects of UN peacekeeping. peacekeeping must be strengthened and re-defined so that it can operate beyond the constraints of classical ( or traditional or first generation peacekeeping). Command and control of military forces becomes highly complicated with this degree of reliance on multinational forces. New Thinking About Peacekeeping in the 1990s A number of publications have defined the new challenges for peacekeeping in the 1990s.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 127 and more fundamentally. which has overall responsibility for the management of peacekeeping operations. Most recently. for example. There is also a serious inadequacy in the training of many units sent on peacekeeping operations. the civil/political and the humanitarian components of a mission can sometimes be a problem. undertake the relatively simple roles of classical (or traditional) peacekeeping. these new capabilities have been described as “peace support operations”. John Mackinlay has argued that in semi-consensual and turbulent conflict . in a new mode of second generation capabilities suitable for the challenges of internal conflicts and civil wars. However. Others suggest that to survive and to be relevant in the future. there were complaints about lack of accountability when UN personnel were themselves guilty of breaches of local or international law and abuse of the human rights of local people. 7. and the failure to co-ordinate the activities of the main UN bodies involved in managing peacekeeping operations. at its height UNOSOM II involved troops from 35 different nations. political. For example. It is widely thought that national contingents sometimes refer to their capitals for orders rather than to the UN Force Commander or to New York. implemented in recent years. Additionally.

In order to achieve rapid deployment. In the US.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 128 environments new concepts and training methods are needed. be that only an adherence to the Law of Armed Conflict or Geneva Conventions. no matter how much the parties may object. Boutros-Ghali requested that Governments make troops and resources available to UN peace operations at short notice. peacemaking. in T. Ramsbotham (eds. But the referee must not become a party to the conflict. PSO are designed to enforce compliance with the operation’s mandate and to create a secure environment in which civilian agencies can rebuild the infrastructure necessary to create a self-sustaining peace. However. In Agenda for Peace (1992). P. nor against a particular party. PSO force actions are based upon judgements of the degree of compliance and/or non-compliance of the parties with the operation’s mandate and not against any bias or predetermined designation. In peacekeeping (PK) mode.). “Sharpening the Weapons of Peace”. the idea of the Standby Forces was limited to what is now Wilkinson. Rather than achieve a short-term military victory. All military operations are conducted with a degree of restraint. These Standby Forces were not to be used for peace-enforcement actions. the level of consent is such that the referee requires relatively few resources. 71. but is now used more widely to embrace in addition those other peace related operations. after consultation with Member States in 1993 and 1994. LCOL Philip Wilkinson. equipped and prepared to monitor and enforce cease-fires and even peace agreements. UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali introduced the idea of forming “peace enforcement units” which would be more heavily armed than traditional peacekeeping forces and which would be on call from member states. Presidential Decision Directive 25 uses the term “peace operations” or “peace support operations” to cover the entire spectrum of activities from traditional peacekeeping to peace enforcement. and humanitarian assistance. which include conflict prevention.05. p. but for Chapter VI-type operations. In peace enforcement (PE). What makes PSO distinct is their impartial nature. PSO are neither in support of. but are conducted in an impartial and even-handed manner. London: Frank Cass. defined the idea of peace support operations as follows3: Peace Support Operations was a term first used by the military to cover both peacekeeping and peace enforcement operations. and replaced the earlier concept of Wider Peacekeeping (issued in 1994). (2000). The operational plans for I/SFOR (in Bosnia and KFOR (in Kosovo) all directed that military operations to enforce compliance should be conducted in an impartial and even handed manner. In British usage the military doctrine in which the concept is defined was issued in 1998 as Joint Warfare Publication 3. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution. however. the referee requires enough resources to enforce compliance with the mandate. The conduct of a PSO force should be analogous to that of a third party referee and should remain that way even if only one party consistently fails to comply with the mandate and suffers the consequences. Referee status requires a very different approach from that of a player whose ambition is to defeat the other teams or teams. Woodhouse and O. Peace Building. who largely developed the new British doctrine. 3 .

the “Standby Arrangements System (UNSAS)” -.which is. brings peacekeeping squarely into the realm of conflict resolution. Peacekeeping as Conflict Resolution UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan pointed to the need for peacekeeping forces to find new capabilities for what he refers to as “positive inducements” to gain support for peacekeeping mandates amongst populations in conflict areas. an important improvement on the previous position whereby UN headquarters was only accessible to peacekeepers in the field between 0900-1700 hours during normal working days. At the national level. and partly because it is better to attempt to influence the behaviour of people in conflict situations through the use of the “carrot” rather than the “stick”. 8. trained and equipped than before. For Annan. Peacekeeping actors need to be able to make rewards viable in the mission area. with a staff of 24 who reports on the major operations to the UN Secretary General. crucially. the Netherlands and Canada have been particularly active in their support for improving the rapid deployment of UN forces through better stand-by arrangements of this kind. for example. University of Bradford. A Lessons Learned Unit was also established to record and analyse the experience gained on UN missions in order to build-up institutional memory and to improve performance in future operations. This is partly because the effect of coercion will erode over time. Conflict Resolution Monitor. 4 . the vital division is between Annan. “taking the next step”. but they are likely to be more professionally organised. K. In the latest British doctrine. UN peacekeeping missions may be smaller. In New York. while coercion can restrain violence at least temporarily. Therefore. nevertheless. and better prepared. undoubtedly. The Nordic countries. The Situation Centre now functions continuously.4 While he argues that future peacekeeping forces will require a greater coercive capacity. taking the next step means offering positive incentives or inducements. it cannot promote lasting peace. This concept of peacekeeping. which Annan sees as absolutely essential for the future effectiveness of peacekeeping operations.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 129 called. Centre for Conflict Resolution. and international training centres and programmes have emerged. troop-contributing countries have made significant improvements in the 1990s. “Peace Operations and the UN”. a Situation Centre was established within the DPKO in 1993. durable peace and sustainable solution require not only stopping the violence but. pp. reliance on coercion alone will be insufficient. In emerging doctrines of peacekeeping. sees consent and Peace Building (not victory) as end goals. more efficiently deployed. peace enforcement is significantly re-defined to have a place within a broader framework of intervention options which. It is intended to define a modus operandi for military peacekeeping personnel in the future conduct of peacekeeping. Department of Peace Studies. 25-32. Thus. For the future. the term peace support operations provides a doctrine that is relevant to the post-Cold War strategic environment. raising standards of training and producing codes of conduct. (1997). a move towards improving deployment efficiency and speed. 1.

1 Consent-Promoting Techniques To reduce the chances of this undesirable escalation. It is evident from this approach that peace enforcement must contain two dimensions of activity – one that brings it close to a state of war (i. on the other. The integration of the 5 Army of the UK (1998). (d) community information. London: Joint Warfare Publications 3. 8. 72. credibility. and to foster trust and stability in the area of conflict and positive perceptions of the role of peacekeepers and the nature of the peace process. Peace Support Operations. 7-8. amply resourced to win “hearts and minds”.e. The main objective of such activities is to provide good information to reduce rumour. with peacekeeping and peace enforcement operating on the correct side of the impartiality line. peacekeepers must spend more time increasingly engaged in consent-promoting activities. It is clear that unless there is serious engagement with the consent-promoting dimension of peacekeeping and peace enforcement. (b) liaison. what defines the essence of peace support here is the need to preserve not so much consent as impartiality. They are particularly important because the military element’s presence in the operational area does not always inspire local support for them.05.. These techniques are similar to Kofi Annan’s idea of building and strengthening positive inducements in peace support operations. while at the same time (in order not to breach the impartiality principle) it must be capable of building consent to limit the necessity for enforcement of compliance. The likelihood of using combat techniques will be reduced significantly if consent and co-operation techniques are adequately developed. However. that is of taking sides and being drawn into the conflict directly (as the experience in Somalia demonstrated). If this is not done the prospect of being drawn into prolonged military enforcement actions is more likely. and transparency – is related to the techniques of promoting good communication. and with the objective of sustaining or restoring consent in the interests of the long-term demands of Peace Building. uncertainty and prejudice on the one hand. (e) public information.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 130 peace enforcement and war. and positive approaches to community relations through an active civil affairs programme. of “crossing the Mogadishu line”. The managing of consent – based on the principles of impartiality. mutual respect. Current peace support doctrine5 identifies six sets of techniques designed to maintain consent in conflict areas where peacekeepers are deployed. negotiation and mediation. and (f) community relations. Therefore. which relates to the goals of conflict resolution and post conflict peace-building. which increases the danger. right down to the individual level. minimum force. . legitimacy. (c) civilian affairs. it must be prepared for combat and have an enforcement capability). the new peacekeeping doctrine is fraught with danger of becoming embroiled in warfare. and 7-12. 7-2. UK and US doctrines recognise the importance of consent-promoting techniques in peacekeeping. The techniques are: (a) negotiation and mediation.

. manage crises and settle disputes. Community Relations: Community relations refers to the deliberate fostering of social contact with the local population. The account below clearly illustrates the use of LO’s in Bosnia by the British peacekeeping officer Colonel Bob Stewart (Commander 1st Cheshire Battalion Group. . friction. 316-318. After all. peacekeeping personnel should receive thorough training on the local culture. p. the communities. Stewart (1993). controlled and fostered at every level by the peacekeeping actors will develop a climate of mutual respect and co-operation necessary for the successful resolution of the conflict. Liaison: Conflict thrives on rumour. Below. A liaison system is therefore required to link the peacekeeping force. therefore a vital tool in peace support operations. if conditions could be improved then perhaps we would be able to escort convoys through areas with much 6 Extract from B. uncertainty and prejudice. which enable agreements to be reached. but the requirement is now quite widely recognised... the aid agencies and the media. Failure to liase risks misunderstanding. enquiry. “go-between”) is. Negotiation and mediation are skills required at all stages of a peace support operation and need to be exercised at every level of interaction. The purpose of community relations is to create favourable perceptions locally and to encourage co-operative responses to peace support activities. the parties to the conflict. London: Harper Collins. The passage of accurate information based on a trusting relationship is a key method of combating uncertainty and promoting stability in a conflict region. Liaison (or. three of the sets of techniques are discussed. co-ordinate activity. All peacekeeping actors should consider themselves agents of the community relations programme.It made great sense to us to create a climate of peace and stability in which to operate. British Command Area of UNPROFOR in Vitez. positive relationships between the factions and the peacekeeping actors may be formed. to notify intentions.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 131 operational and practical aspects of conflict resolution approaches into the processes of peacekeeping in the field is still at a somewhat unsystematic and rudimentary stage. Broken Lives: A Personal Views of the Bosnian Conflict. 6 My mission in Bosnia came directly from Security Council resolutions and basically it amounted to operations in support of the UNHCR to deliver humanitarian aid. Prior to deployment. 1992-1993). mediation and conciliation as the most effective means of settling public disputes. opposition and escalation of the conflict. By negotiation and mediation. Central Bosnia. the civil authorities. Negotiation and Mediation: Article 33 of Chapter VI of the UN Charter emphasises the importance of negotiation. Liaison Officers (LO’s) have been described as the “eyes and ears” of the peace Force Commander. Objective and effective negotiations that are created. The purpose of liaison is to ensure the timely exchange of information. lodge protests.

Their own personality was vital since they had to be able to operate on their own.This suggested therefore that we should do all in our power to help stop the fighting and arrange cease-fires. . They worked in advance. ..However. . warning and preparing the ground as well as being trouble-shooters when things went wrong. in a style which both attracted and suited local commanders. We had to create favourable conditions for our work with local contacts.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 132 greater ease.were fundamental to our successful tour. . which is why I established a comprehensive system of liaison officers who concentrated on improving relations in a particular area.I felt that our liaison officers.. Negotiation was always the way we intended to achieve our aims..... It was vital that they were considered professional and trustworthy. Launching a convoy towards a certain destination in the hope that it would get there eventually was not good enough.. we had no mandate for forcing a passage through..

Fetherston. A. Peacemaking Strategies in Northern Ireland: Building Complementarity in Conflict Management Theory. (Chapter Five. 28 (1): 29-42. Doctrine and Practice of Conflict De-Escalation in Peacekeeping Operations. Nova Scotia: The Pearson Peacekeeping Centre. J. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. D. Cambridge: Polity Press. Fisher. . Providence. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). 128-151) Bloomfield.J.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 133 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. London: Macmillan. (1997).B. RI: Thomas J. D. R. pp. London: Macmillan. Mackinlay. Theory. Watson Institute for International Studies/Brown University. “The Potential Complementarity of Mediation and Consultation Within a Contingency Model of Third Party Intervention”.) (1996). (1997). Clemenstport. Towards a Theory of United Nations Peacekeeping. Keashly (1991). and L. “Working in War-Zones”. Journal of Peace Research. A Guide to Peace Support Operations. Last. (ed. (1994).

are identified in: a. List them. peacekeeping acts as an interface between: a. 6. cultures of violence . civil wars d. Conflict resolution techniques. Geneva Conventions b. all of the above 2. military and civilian components d. Classical (or traditional) peacekeeping missions have generally been deployed in: a. Classical (or traditional) peacekeeping is defined by the application of five principles. both official and unofficial c. Universal Declaration of Human Rights 5. Chapter VI. peacemaking and Peace Building c. United Nations peacekeepers were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in: a. permissive environments (with consent) b. negotiation and conciliation. use of force and non-use of force 3. 1956 b. 1997 4. A contingency-complementarity model of conflict intervention is based on: a. At the micro-level of conflict intervention. complex political emergencies c. 1990 d. discussion and destruction b. 1988 c. Article 33 of the UN Charter c. employing different strategies that will be most effective at particular points in a conflict b. such as mediation. using a variety of third parties.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 134 LESSON 7 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. addressing the both the objective and subjective elements of conflict d.

community information. 8-d. civilian affairs. Modern peacekeeping missions need to develop more effective conflict resolution skills and processes because: a. peacekeepers have become more important than diplomats 10. voluntary contributions. 3-b. 7-a. 2-b. UNPROFOR (former Yugoslavia) d. UNTAC (Cambodia) 8. public information . List three consent-promoting techniques. Answer Key: 1-d.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 135 7. all of the above 9. delivery of humanitarian relief d. 5-consent. negotiation and mediation. 4-b. peacekeeping depends on inducing consent amongst belligerents for Peace Building activities b. impartiality. UNOSOM II (Somalia) c. 9-a. 10-community relations. liaison. UNEF I (the Middle East) b. military/security issues b. non-use of force. 6-a. control by UNSG. this enables peacekeepers to avoid becoming involved in civil wars c. political issues (such as the conduct of elections) c. Second generation operations have been deployed in conflicts involving: a. Which of the following would you describe as a classical peacekeeping operation? a.

those who refused to disarm would be declared outlaws and pursued by UNITAF forces. and helping the International 7 Extract from M. They were involved in re-opening the roads. Rupiya (1997). however. Major Vitalis Chigume. UNOSOM II. The situation is an instructive one because the Commander of the operation was keen to maintain the consent and support of the community in which his troops were deployed. Once agreement was reached. therefore. very important in the operation. UNITAF was mandated by the United Nations as a peace enforcement operation under Chapter VII of the Charter. The Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) contingent in Somalia numbered 162 men. At a certain stage. Peacekeeping principles were. and to operate impartially. the operation reached a critical point. you are then asked to consider the issue faced by Major Chigume and to assess what you should do next. the strategy of the international community with the support of the Organisation for African Unity (OAU) was to get the main Somali clans to agree to a cease-fire and to recognise the authority of UNITAF and its mandate. scheduled to hand over to the UN-led operation. It was not a peacekeeping operation and it was under the command of the United States. once its duties were completed. in which the Zimbabwean Army was involved as part of the United Nations International Task Force (UNITAF). “The Bakara Market Arms Clearance Operation of 1993". requiring an important decision by the commander of the operation. The Bakara Market Arms Clearance Operation of 1993 Background The primary aim of the UNITAF deployment was to restore law and order amongst the clans fighting in Somalia and to protect humanitarian aid convoys. . Method: In this exercise you are presented with an account of a challenging situation in Somalia. re-establishing schools and hospitals. Your task is to read the following account. The account stops at this point. International Peacekeeping. It was. 4 (1): 115-121. The short synopsis is based on an eyewitness report of the actions of the Zimbabwean Army in and around the Bakara market in Mogadishu in 19937. and to consider the questions that follow it.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 136 Exercise: A Peacekeeping Challenge Aim: To allow the student to explore the complex realities of working in war-zones. They arrived in Somalia in January 1993 and were first deployed near Mogadishu airport. The information provided should be sufficient for you to gain a basic understanding of the objectives of the operation and the approach taken by the Zimbabweans. At the wider political level. The clans were to agree to surrender arms to UNITAF forces so that a peace process could progress.

. By mid February-1993. The ZNA was then re-deployed to the Bakara market in central Mogadishu. By the end of April the arms clearance operation had radically restricted the availability of arms and the market area was much more secure and peaceful. However. The ZNA’s task was to disarm the arms sellers without disrupting legitimate trade.Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 137 Committee of the Red Cross establish community kitchens. patrolling. ordinary people in the market area began to come forward and confide in the ZNA forces. conducting sweeps. One of the soldiers was seriously wounded in the chest. The Operation Major Chigume decided to pursue the objective by a variety of tactics including cordon and search. agreement had been reached amongst the Somali factions in Addis Ababa to accept the authority of UNITAF. providing information about arms caches and houses normally used by the armed men. With agreement reached in Addis Ababa on a cease-fire and with news of clan leaders meeting to agree on assembly points for where weapons might be handed in. On 5th May.000 assorted weapons and tons of munitions. Here the selling of a variety of arms and ammunition co-existed with a wide range of normal market activity. important for the economic well-being of the city. Endpoint Consider the following questions: What action would you take if you were in Major Chigume’s place when you returned to the patrol group? Why? Would you revise your overall strategy? How? What do you think the actual outcome of the situation was? Write brief notes on each of these questions. He established an inner and outer cordon around the market. a ZNA patrol was attacked by gunfire at close range. The local people were told that purpose of the ZNA was to confiscate weapons and munitions. at this point local arms merchants whose trade was being affected by the operation fought back. and that combatants from any faction who were prepared to voluntarily surrender arms would be protected by the international force. deployed two platoons (60 men) in the centre of the market and a thirty-strong reserve platoon located some distance away and not directly involved with the force but ready to provide re-enforcements or replacements if required. where they were expected to prevent the vigorous arms trade run from the market. the ZNA confiscated over 1. that normal trade would be left to flourish. Between the middle of February and the end of March. individuals and houses. and searching suspicious groups. Major Chigume was in the vicinity and was able to get the soldier to a nearby Swedish Field Hospital. He then returned to debrief the patrol commander. establishing short-term and long-term road blocks.

Lesson 7/Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution in War Zones 138 To find out what action Major Chigume took and how the operation concluded. consult the source of the account. .

2. and creating a society where the differences among social groups are resolved through compromise rather than violent conflict requires that conflict resolution and consensus-building shape all interactions among citizens and between citizens and the state. Introduction Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo The United Nations Framework for Peace Building Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below Co-ordinating Military and Civilian Roles in Peace Building Contingency and Complementarity in Practice: A Case Study of Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia Peace agreements provide a framework for ending hostilities and a guide to the initial stages of post conflict reform. 3. Successfully ending the divisions that lead to war.LESSON 8 PEACE SETTLEMENTS AND POST-CONFLICT PEACE BUILDING 1.Nicole Ball. 7. as a means to achieve sustainable human security. 5. . They do not create conditions under which the deep cleavages that produced the war are automatically surmounted. The Challenge of Rebuilding War-Torn Societies Peace Building is the effort to promote human security in societies marked by conflict. . The overarching goal of peace building is to strengthen the capacity of societies to manage conflict without violence. healing the social wounds created by war.The Canadian Peace Building Co-ordinating Committee . 4. 6.

Understand the process of “peace building-from-below”. Consider the principles and codes of conduct covering the relationship between interveners and local populations. Explore the application of the contingency-complementarity model of conflict intervention (including peace building in the sequence) to a project in Bosnia. Finally the need for better coordination of military and civilian roles is suggested and illustrated through the Civil Military Centre and through a case study of a peace building in project in Bosnia. Identify the mechanisms for co-ordinating military and civilian roles in post-conflict peace building. .Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 140 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson examines the role of UN peacekeeping in the post settlement phase of the conflict resolution process. the student will be able to: Discuss the nature and range of UN mechanisms and processes for peacemaking after the termination of armed conflicts. After studying the material contained in this lesson. Describe the role of reconciliation and the idea of sustainability of peace processes. is emphasised. involving local communities through peace building from below. Apply these concepts to the case of Kosovo. The tasks and processes of post conflict peace building are defined and Kosovo is examined as a case study of when the UN is involved in a complex and challenging process of post conflict peace building. A general framework for United Nations peace building is defined and the importance of supporting a grass roots led approach.

Since publication of An Agenda for Peace. Both military and civilian components also need to carefully co-ordinate their work to ensure the success of their peace building activities. In the reconstruction phase there are two strategic tasks: (1) to prevent a relapse into war.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 141 1. Introduction If the responses of the international community are successful in containing the conflict. and repairing some of the damage caused. appointed by the UN Secretary-General. There may be continued resistance to this as local warlords. devised by the Contact Group of Western states. UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali defined post-conflict peace building as “actions to identify and support structures which will tend to strengthen and solidify peace in order to avoid a relapse into conflict”. The UN’s continuous involvement in post-settlement peace building goes back at least as far as the 1978 Settlement Proposal in Namibia. and (2) to address the sustainability of the peace process by ensuring that peaceful relations are developed not only at the leadership level. producing a peace settlement. The ultimate goal of a successful peace process is achieved when reconciliation between previous antagonists has been secured. finally. For peaceful relations to develop a process of peace building “from below” (that is within and between communities) must be energised. However. It became the main model for the UN' new post-settlement peace-building efforts in a number of s long-standing internal wars. This formula for accelerating the withdrawal of a former colonial power and its replacement by an independent state was revived 10 years later in very different circumstances. They provide the secure environment in which the opportunities for peace building-from-below and reconciliation can take place. it was envisaged that post-conflict peace building would initially be undertaken by multifunctional UN operations. have continued interests in sustaining the conflict. Defining Peace Settlements and Peace Building In An Agenda for Peace (1992). . Peacekeeping forces are centrally involved in the first of these two strategic tasks. then the next stage in the conflict resolution process is post-settlement peace building. In this Lesson. At this time. the idea of peace building has progressively expanded to include a broader agenda. we examine the ways in which the international community takes on the very difficult challenge of rehabilitating war-torn societies. but also within and between the communities. was to ensure the early independence of Namibia through free and fair elections under the supervision and control of the United Nations. transferred entirely to local organisations. In the 1995 Supplement to An Agenda for Peace. 2. then handed over to civilian agencies under a resident co-ordinator and. All peacekeeping actors need to be aware of the ethical issues and codes of conduct that should guide their relationships with the local population. A Special Representative. or “spoilers”. the military peacekeeping forces must also be aware of the various efforts of local and international civilian organisations to restore sustainable peace. peace building was mostly equated with military demobilisation and political transition to participatory electoral democracy.

Finally. and electoral. military. police. a police division. In Mozambique. UNAVEM III’s main mission components in Angola were political. a common management pattern emerged from the UN’s experiences intervening in conflicts. the key elements of peace building have been described by former-UN Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali as: demilitarisation control of small arms institutional reform improved police and judicial systems monitoring of human rights electoral reform social and economic development.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 142 Over the next ten years. In El Salvador. For example. (3) supervision of the interim Administrator-General’s government and repeal of discriminatory laws. and an electoral division. in Cambodia. (4) return of refugees. UNTAG’s main tasks in Namibia were: (1) separation of military forces and demobilisation of those not needed in the new national army. In 1997 UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan explained the objectives of post-conflict peace building as: creation or strengthening of national institutions monitoring of elections promotion of human rights provision of reintegration and rehabilitation programmes and the creation of conditions for resumed development. but there is a recognisable pattern. . ONUMOZ’s original mandate included four interrelated components: political. These elements of post-conflict peace building appear in most of the UN missions of the 1990s. similar elements can be discerned. electoral and humanitarian (a civilian police component was later added. military. and (5) electoral registration and monitoring. The individual elements in the UN’s post-settlement peace building SOP have varied from case to case. ONUSAL’s original human rights division was subsequently supplemented by a military division. (2) demilitarisation of the South West Africa Police (SWAPOL). there were seven components of UNTAC (see Table 8-1). We might refer to this pattern as a “standard operation procedure” (SOP) for designing peace agreements and promoting peace building. In 1995. humanitarian. Although post-Dayton Bosnian arrangements were different given the central role of IFOR/SFOR.

finance. national defence. public security. when Serb President Slobodan Milosevic removed its autonomy and brought it under direct Serb control. health and housing needs Rehabilitation Begin essential work on infrastructure Development work in villages with returnees 3.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 143 Table 8-1: Components and Tasks of UNTAC Components of the United Nations Transition Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC) Component Tasked To? Verify withdrawal of foreign forces Monitor cease-fire violations Military Organise cantonment and disarm factions Assist in mine-clearance Civilian Police Supervise local civilian police Train local police Secure signing of human rights conventions Oversee human rights record of administration Human Rights Investigate alleged human rights violations Initiate education and training programmes Supervise administration to ensure neutral environment for election in 5 Civil Administration areas: foreign affairs. . information Conduct demographic survey Register and educate voters Electoral Draft electoral law Supervise and verify election process Repatriation Repatriate 360.000 refugees Address immediate food. A Case Study of Post-Conflict Peace Building in Kosovo One of the most recent efforts of the international community to enforce a peace. and deploy UN and other international agencies to undertake a complex process of peace building is in Kosovo. It is an area in southern Serbia (former-Yugoslavia) where the majority of the population are ethnic Albanians. the minority population (about 10%) are Serbs. Kosovo had a high degree of autonomy within Yugoslavia until 1989. impose a peace agreement.

initially through a campaign of civil resistance and the building of parallel institutions (e. The resolution of the conflict was to be based on principles adopted on May 6th by the foreign ministers of G8 (including the Russian Federation). resulting in over 1.000 people being forced to leave their homes. schools. NATO authorised the use of air strikes against Serbia to back up diplomatic efforts to force Milosevic to withdraw military forces from Kosovo and to facilitate the return of refugees. and an agreement with Yugoslavia brokered by the EU and Russian special envoys in early June.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 144 Kosovar Albanians opposed this throughout the 1990s. Serb military forces then intensified their operations against Kosovar Albanians. In October 1998. NATO called off its air strikes following an agreement between it and the Yugoslav Army. However.. The OSCE was authorised to establish a Kosovo Verification Mission (KVM) and NATO would establish an aerial surveillance mission (UNSCR 1203). but the Serbs walked out without signing. These principles were: . health services) to represent their interests. the conflict between Serbian military and police forces in Kosovo and the increasingly militant Kosovo guerrilla forces escalated during 1998. The pattern became one of apparent Serb attempts to drive out ethnic Albanians from their communities (reflecting the policy of ethnic cleansing which had taken place in Bosnia). Serb forces were challenged by the militant Albanian Kosova Liberation Army (KLA) in its attempt to build a political movement with the goal of independence from Serbia. The international community launched a comprehensive peace building package that included a range of military and civilian activities.500 deaths and 400. UNSCR 1244 announced the decision to deploy an international civil and security presence in Kosovo under UN auspices. President Milosevic agreed to this.1 Kosovo Force (KFOR) Established On June 10th 1999. breaking their compliance with the October agreement. and a second round was held in Paris from the 15th to 18th of March.g. The Kosovar Albanians signed the peace agreement. After an air campaign of 77 days. Additionally. and by a paper accepted by the government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) and presented by the EU and the Russian Federation on June 3rd. On the 23rd of March the order was given to commence air strikes against Serbia (Operation Allied Force). a special military task force under NATO command was established in Macedonia to assist with the emergency evacuation of KVM staff should the situation deteriorate. Negotiations were held at Rambouillet near Paris from 6th to 23rd of February. The six nation Contact Group (originally established by the 1992 London conference on former-Yugoslavia) agreed to convene negotiations between the parties. By January 1999. 3. a number of acts of provocation and fears of further escalation led to renewed efforts to find a political solution.

General Michael Jackson took command of the security presence. the safe return of all refugees. the withdrawal of military. and the administration of the judiciary. The security force was called the Kosovo Force. By June 12th. the Serb withdrawal was complete. police and paramilitary forces of the FRY.2 The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) On June 10th. By June 20th. a comprehensive approach to the economic development of the crisis region. the Security Council authorised the Secretary-General to establish an interim civilian administration to develop substantial autonomy for the people of Kosovo. By mid-July 1999 the Secretary-General presented a comprehensive framework for the work of UNMIK. Its work was to be integrated into five phases with the following objectives: Phase 1 To set up administrative structures To deploy international civilian police To provide emergency assistance for returning refugees To restore public services To train local police and judiciary To develop an economic recovery plan Phase 2 To develop the administration of social services and utilities To consolidate the rule of law To prepare the transfer of education and health sectors to regional and local authorities Phase 3 To finalise preparations and conduct elections for a Kosovo Transitional Authority Phase 4 To help Kosovo’s elected representatives to establish provisional institutions for democratic and autonomous self government. or KFOR. 3. with substantial NATO participation and a unified command in the security presence. Under its command. Kofi Annan presented an operational concept for what became known as UNMIK (United Nations Interim Administration in Kosovo). and under the command of NATO’s North Atlantic Council. UNMIK was given authority in Kosovo over all legislative and executive powers. to which UNMIK will transfer its administrative responsibilities . the deployment of effective international and security presence. a political process providing for self government and the demilitarisation of the KLA.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 145 an immediate and verifiable end of violence and repression. Operation Joint Guardian entered Kosovo on June 12th. under Chapter VII of the UN charter.

economies and communities. This is the positive aspect of the enterprise. led by the OSCE Economic Reconstruction. Dr Bernard Kouchner. Military and security issues (providing security) Political and constitutional incapacity (building democracy) Economic and social debilitation (securing economic development) Psycho-social issues (restoring co-operation and trust. which characteristically afflict countries after prolonged internal war and hamper the consolidation of peace. 3. In the following sections we look at these dimensions in turn. Pillar One Pillar Two Pillar Three Pillar Four Civilian Administration. 4. It is an attempt to tackle four inter-linked deficits. relationship-building. under the UN Humanitarian Assistance. The aim is to underpin Task A with Task B – a view to long-term sustainability by constitutional and institutional reform. and the reconstitution of the remainder into a . 4.1 The Military Security Dimension of Peace Building The main military task for peace building is the cantonment. 2. numerous peace building initiatives were undertaken by both international agencies and local NGOs.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 146 Phase 5 To oversee the hand-over of authority from provisional institutions to institutions agreed as part of a final political settlement. led by UNHCR Democratisation and Institution-Building. Many of the activities were in collaboration with the four pillars. All of these issues must be addressed if peace is to be permanently sustained. and the rebuilding of shattered polities. Kouchner presides over four sectors. each of which was involved in the civilian aspects of restoring peace. The first set of tasks in the post-settlement phase is to prevent a relapse into war (Task A). led by the EU While the community remained visibly affected by the war and establishing sustainable positive peace and cross-ethnic dialogue will always take time and commitment. The second set of tasks is constructing a self-sustaining peace (Task B). 4. The United Nations Framework for Peace Building Peace agreements have common elements that can be broadly grouped into two inter-related tasks. reconciliation). These deficits are: 1. who took up office on the 15th of July. social reconstruction and reconciliation. UNMIK came under the leadership of the Special Representative of Secretary-General. These sectors are known as the four pillars. disarmament and demobilisation of rival regular and irregular forces. others are independent from them.

the UN SOP prescribes power-sharing arrangements and a new constitution underpinned by regular “free and fair” national and local elections – in short. dictate that 1 Grenier. local politics will develop distinctively in different parts of the world. 2. where 210 million (30% of the population) still live in poverty1 and polls suggest that 65% are dissatisfied with existing democratic processes. liberal democracy. In these circumstances. However. which is at the heart of the UN’s post-settlement peace building SOP. J. 4. “Foreign Assistance and the Marketplace of Peacemaking: Lessons for El Salvador”. For example. This may imply deeper involvement and more intimate embroilment in local politics and may require considerable use of military force where extremists are major players (like Pol Pot in Cambodia. In Cambodia. Here politics may be sustained by traditional patronage structures. democratic elections equate with peace settlements. . Savimbi in Angola. between current Western notions of individual rights and the priorities of non-Western nation-building. No. it can be argued that there is a tension. not by popular consent. has subsequently succeeded in displacing the winner. as can be seen to be the case by those who look beneath the democratic surface elsewhere. Undisciplined former-combatants retain weapons and fail to find alternative employment in shattered economies in a continuing culture of violence. by force. International Peacekeeping. Opinions vary about the programme of participatory politics and constitutional and electoral reform. it seems likely that. Hun Sen (CPP). 3. Y. such as the pyramidal Brahmanic and fatalistic Buddhist social system in Cambodia. or Karadzic in Bosnia). Elections or no elections. a hardened doctrine of peacekeeping is being fashioned in order to be able to enforce compliance with peace agreements by the ability to take action against “spoilers”. or those who try to wreck peace processes by the use of violence. Vol. with more killings per year in 1998 than during the war.350-64. and in some cases the basic infrastructure of a judicial system. no matter what UN framework is applied. For many. the Western democratic model does not fit some non-Western cultures. Mozambique and Angola may evolve along the lines of neighbouring Zimbabwe. and Daudelin.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 147 national army and civil police force. the loser in the 1993 election. Some argue that the UN assumption that peace building means introducing Western liberal democratic political institutions and ideas of civil society is unsuitable for cultural reasons. The rate is higher in El Salvador than in Columbia. Similar “minimalist” notions apply to the administration of justice. Violent crime saps 14% of the region’s GDP. the long-term prospect of demilitarising politics and transforming cultures of violence is challenging. In any case. For example. pp. if not contradiction.2 The Political Dimension of Peace Building In addressing the political and constitutional deficit. Lack of an independent judiciary. Recently. where President Mugabe has presided continuously since independence. Prince Ranariddh (FUNCINPEC).and middle-term problems in post-conflict areas is the rise in crime rates. 1995. the murder rate is three times that in the United States. One of the most important short. in Latin America.

There are some who have expressed the opinion that IMF policy was damaging in some cases such as Mozambique in 1995. Restoring Co-operation and Trust: Peace Building-from-Below Effective and sustainable peacemaking processes must be based not only on the manipulation of peace agreements made by elites. In these conflicts. cultures and economies of violence develop and provide formidable barriers to constructive intervention.3 The Economic and Social Dimension of Peace Building In making up the economic and social deficit. Similar consequences have been seen in Cambodia and El Salvador. There are important lessons to be learned from the experiences of peacekeeping operations in the 1990s. simple. formal peace agreements need to be underpinned by understandings. and target resources at supporting those hardest hit during the transition period.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 148 the bare minimum of some measure of personal security is all that can be hoped for in the foreseeable future. structures and long-term development frameworks that will erode cultures of violence and sustain peace processes on the ground. Paris (1997). 2 . However. where an already struggling government was initially required to make further cutbacks. but equally importantly on the empowerment of communities torn apart by war – that is.2 Others place their emphasis on enabling indigenous economic systems to flourish protected from the harsh climate of international capital. building peace from below. Firstly. The logic of local empowerment may also imply deep involvement in indigenous struggles for social justice. 22 (2): 54-89. Most working in the Conflict Resolution field would claim that the main aim must be “local empowerment”. underpinned by conditions determined by International Financial Institutions (IFIs). International Security. the UN has applied a liberal market economy model. Secondly. which recognise the priority of stimulating rapid economic growth even at the risk of higher inflation. there has been lack of co-ordination between the two in some cases. 5. 4. in the course of civil wars. where initial increased growth rates have slowed and widening economic inequalities and a growth in crime threaten stability. “Peace Building and the Limits of Liberal Internationalism”. Paris recommends a shift of priorities within the UN’s SOP towards “peace-oriented adjustment policies”. controlled and manipulated as it is seen to be by the economic interests of the developed world. Therefore. one-dimensional interventions – whether by traditional mediators aiming at formal peace agreements or peacekeepers placed to supervise cease-fires or overseeing of elections – are unlikely to produce comprehensive or lasting resolution. R.

Most peacemaking at the level of international diplomacy operates at Level One of this triangle. there is a variety of grass-roots (GROs) and community-based organisations (CBOs) that represent local interests. the armed combatants are also represented as guerrillas and soldiers in militias. third party intervenors) are valued more highly than peacemaking assets that may exist within the community. church groups and locally-based NGOs. There are significant challenges here for the UN in this process of empowering local groups. citizens’ initiatives. They open-up participatory public political spaces in order to allow institutions of civil society to flourish. elders. Similarly. like Oxfam and Save the Children. and local cultures. There are over 4. we understand the long-term goal of transformation as validating and building on people and resources within the setting. which involve all the affected population. At this level. At the grass-roots level (Level Three) are the vast majority of the affected population: the common people. there were over 200 NGOs active at the height of the crisis in 1995. or INGOs. are the national leaders who have significance as leaders in sectors such as health. These provide the vital links with local knowledge and resources. for example. local opinion. which he calls indigenous empowerment. respect. Once again. with the key military and political leaders at the apex. have multinational organisation).000 development NGOs in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries that work mainly overseas. the number of NGOs in the field can escalate dramatically. The latter may become the field-based partners of the larger NGOs (that is the international NGOs. In the course of the most extreme conflict emergencies. In the middle. and the non-governmental sector. John Paul Lederach has stressed the importance of this approach. education and within the military hierarchies. and an estimated 20. This involves a new set of lenses through which we do not primarily “see” the setting and the people in it as the “problem” and the outsider as the “answer”. He describes the affected population as a triangle. at Level One. which can operate in may countries and regions and which. Lederach’s comprehensive approach entails building an “infrastructure for peace”. The principle of indigenous empowerment suggests that conflict transformation must actively envision. If this process does not happen then the conflict is likely to remain.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 149 Thirdly. and promote the human and cultural resources from within a given setting. but for conflict resolution to be successful and sustainable then the co-ordination of peacemaking strategies across all three levels must be undertaken. In Rwanda. displaced and refugee populations.000 other national NGOs outside the OECD countries. These groups are important because they provide the source of sustainable citizen-based peace building initiatives. it is important to recognise the role of local groups. Finally. at Level Two. and the military peacekeeping forces may need to stay in place for long periods simply to provide security. Rather. local leaders. peace building-from-below is of decisive importance for it is the means by which a peace constituency can be built within the setting of the conflict itself. include. the number of NGOs active in former-Yugoslavia went through a remarkable expansion as the crisis . In this new thinking. this is a departure from conventional practice where peacemaking resources from outside the conflict (diplomats.

and to give priority to the most urgent cases of distress. In Kosovo. which insist on local empowerment and will. A Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and NGOs in disaster relief developed in Geneva in 1993 contains 10 principles for NGOs working to provide humanitarian relief to communities in natural disasters and in conflict zones. The Red Cross makes no discrimination as to nationality. Its purpose is to protect life and health and to ensure respect for the human being. endeavours…to prevent and alleviate human suffering wherever it may be found. . The Red Cross. facilitate and enhance the emphasis on local capacity-building and peace building-from-below. religious or ideological nature. with more or less well-known reputations (91). The Red Cross is a world-wide institution in which all Societies have equal status and share equal responsibilities and duties in helping each other. has existed for military peacekeepers. structures and customs of the host society). therefore. Principle 7: Ways shall be found to involve programme beneficiaries in the management of relief aid (the need to achieve full community participation in the management and implementation of relief and assistance). the Red Cross may not take sides in hostilities or engage at any time in controversies of a political.1 Guiding Principles and Codes of Conduct for Peace Building-From-Below A standard code of conduct. Principle 3: The Principle of Neutrality. The traditional principles of neutrality. Principles 1 through four were supplemented by 5 through 10. In order to continue to enjoy the confidence of all. being guided solely by their needs. the number of NGOs nearly doubled (from 65 to 126). It endeavours to relieve the suffering of individuals. a number were indigenous NGOs. While the majority of them were internationally-based. born of a desire to bring assistance without discrimination to the wounded on the battlefield. in late-1999. established by the UN DPKO.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 150 unfolded. codes of conduct for international agencies and NGOs have been largely absent until recently. class or political opinion. race. Principle 5: We shall respect culture and custom (respect for the culture. Principle 6: We will attempt to build disaster response on local capacities (all people and communities even in disasters possess capabilities as well as vulnerabilities and these capacities should be strengthened by working with local NGOs. 5. there were over 350 international and local NGOs on the ground. employing local staff and using local economic resources). religious beliefs. However. (GROs and CBOs) which developed in response to the war. as follows. racial. Principle 4: The Principle of Universality. Principle 1: The Principle of Humanity. impartiality and humanitarian concern were covered in the first four principles. Our movement’s universality stems from the attachment of each of its members to common values. Between February and September 1993. Principle 2: The Principle of Impartiality.

and intensive psycho-therapy. in the former-Yugoslavia. 3 . Reconciliation is the process through which societies move from situations of negative peace (the stopping of hostilities) to situations of positive peace (where trust and co-operation between former enemies has been restored). As we all know. Principle 10: In our information. publicity and advertising activities. they are often deeply traumatised in ways not visible to the naked eye. we shall recognise disaster victims as dignified humans. it took more than a year to establish a sufficient level of trust among community members to enable collaborative projects to be implemented. peace has yet to break out for many of the victims. 5. assistance was provided through psychologically-oriented group interventions. The “invisible effects” of war are often harder to treat than the physical effects: The first victims of war are often women and children.2 Reconciliation and Sustainability Healing the personal and social scars of war has always been central to the work of the Conflict Resolution field. the end-point of a successful process of peace building is reconciliation. not only vulnerabilities and fears). and to use images where the capacities and aspirations of the victims are portrayed. In Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia. In Cambodia. not hopeless objects (the need to respect the disaster victim as an equal partner in action. This task is not an optional extra or an idealistic aspiration separate from the more practical aspects of post-settlement peace building. Principle 9: We hold ourselves accountable to both those we seek to assist and those from whom we accept resources (the need to be accountable to both those who require assistance and to donors). It is. for example.3 Psycho-social assistance to victims of war is now seen to be a part of a long-term healing process. Even though they do not lose life or limbs. Despite this trauma.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 151 Principle 8: Relief aid must strive to reduce future vulnerabilities to disaster as well as meeting basic needs (the need to implement programmes which reduce vulnerability to future disasters and help create sustainable lifestyles). quoted I. undoubtedly. It is integral to every other enterprise. counselling. foreword. Agger (1995). One of the main obstacles to social and psychological healing is the accumulated hurt and hatred suffered by hundreds of thousands if not millions of victims. for example. Zagreb: ECHO. Lederach has defined Emma Bonino (European Commissioner with Responsibility for Humanitarian Aid). Theory and Practice of Psycho-Social Projects under War Conditions in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Croatia. as it is often seen to be. the most difficult part of conflict resolution and cannot be achieved in the short-term. Victims of violence and rape cannot just walk back into everyday life as if nothing happened.

which may be applicable to reconciliation processes in other conflicts (Table 8-2). forgiveness. The peace and development agency CARITAS drew up the following balance sheet of some of the strengths and weaknesses of the TRC in South Africa. Needless to say. Truth and Reconciliation Commissions raise difficult questions. truth. and by others arguing that human rights violations should be tried and punished in courts of law. some acknowledgment of responsibility. For example. to apologise and to forgive or let go of the past in favour of a renewed relationship. reconciliation means working with three challenging paradoxes: Reconciliation means an encounter between an open expression of the painful past and the search for an interdependent future. to acknowledge what has happened in the past. In his definition. For example. the South African TRC has been criticised from opposite directions. if not expression of regret. One of the promising new mechanisms for addressing these issues is the use of Truth Commissions. the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) has been recognised as a key part of the reconciliation of the conflict in South Africa. The TRC in South Africa is aimed at: full public disclosure of human rights violations since 1960 and an attempt to harmonize competing versions of the past. The healing process was incomplete and had to be carried further by Catholic priests who acted as intermediaries between perpetrators and victims and extracted information about the whereabouts of bodies in exchange for absolution. Reconciliation provides a place for truth and forgiveness or mercy to meet. by those arguing that the country should not look back and risk causing new wounds. . if not forgiveness. some measure of reparation for the victims to help open-up an emotional space sufficient for accommodation. perpetrators of atrocities were given an amnesty without any private or public acknowledgement or expression of remorse. Reconciliation recognises the need to give time and space to both justice and peace.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 152 reconciliation as the meeting point where justice. where redressing wrongs is held together with a vision of restoring harmony and well-being rather than vengeance. and peace come together. in the wake of the 1993 Truth Commission Report in El Salvador.

The TRC was not a justice tribunal. This process of truth recovery is important in breaking the “silence” which can follow physical repression when people have been too afraid to talk. This aggrieved many South Africans who felt that people who had committed serious crimes were escaping punishment (however. Weaknesses Those who applied for amnesty did not necessarily have to ask for forgiveness. Those who have suffered have the possibility of finding out the truth about family and friends who disappeared or who were unaccountable for. The TRC travelled around the country and was. but they did have to reveal all the circumstances surrounding their crimes. the time-span of the TRC was too short and more long-term issues of historical memory were not dealt with (the TRC only went bck to 1960). which is a necessary first step to reconciliation. The TRC provided a forum for public acknowledgment of guilt and the opportunity to make an apology. . The documentation by the TRC of wrong-doing and human rights abuses creates a new public consciousness about the violence of the past and the effects it had on individuals. the Amnesty Commission did set strict terms on the legal requirements necessary for granting amnesty. For the victim it is an opportunity to forgive and to look to the future rather than to live embittered in the past. It was composed of South Africans who were regarded as possessing the moral authority necessary to oversee the process and to provide international legitimacy. therefore. more accessible to people than if it had been located only in the capital. For some.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 153 TABLE 8-2: The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa: Strengths and Weaknesses Strengths Provide a space in which people can tell their story and where their story will be listened to.

projects may be co-funded by the Department for International Development (DFID). for example. organisations or authorities”4. The longer-term aim is to generate stability and sustainability of the peace process. including: medical and veterinary care provision and distribution of water waste-disposal electrical power ordinance clearance restoration of public services construction and development of schools and community centres These projects are often funded separately. Such measures include co-operation with non-governmental or international agencies. The Department of Political Affairs (DPA) – in its capacity as convenor of the Executive Committee on Peace and Security (ECPS) – co-ordinates the joint enterprise. the Department of Peace-keeping Operations (DPKO). Co-ordinating Military-and Civilian Roles in Peace Building United Nations peace building is an integrated programme.05. In the case of the UK. In new peacekeeping thinking. In all this. British Army (1998). or Civil-Military Centres (CIMIC). CIMIC projects provide the link between security. The immediate aim of CIMIC is to fully co-ordinate civilian and military activities to support humanitarian projects and to achieve the maximum support for the operation. non-governmental organisations. London: Joint Warfare Publication 3. Peace Support Operations. It is widely recognised that co-ordination between the variety of NGOs and between the civil and military forces assigned to contemporary missions is a matter of great priority. or in the case of the US. involving the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). and civil populations in an area where military force are or plan to be employed. 7-5. Projects that do not use 4 From. and relief agencies already working with the community should be sought. stability. Civil-military projects can cover a wide range of activities within local communities. the convenor of ECPS also supports and reinforces the individual task forces established “to ensure integrated action by the entire United Nations system” in each case.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 154 6. in particular. by USAID. the planners are to consider. In recent operations. “the point at which the emphasis on the peace building role will give way to full-fledged reconstruction and development activities”. and peace building. civil and military. CIMIC is defined as “the resources and arrangements which support the relationship between the commanders and national authorities. an interface has been created for the co-ordination of military and civilian roles through Civil-Military Operations Centres (CMOC). As the focal point. the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank. Before commencing projects. the advice of government. . via support from the development assistance authority of the relevant country.

Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 155 local resources and personnel whenever possible may promote a dependency culture and jeopardise long-term peace building. Woodhouse and O. fostering local co-operation at grass-roots level. Contingency and Complementarity in Action: A Case Study of Community-Based Peace Building in Bosnia5 International forces can impose military stability. but they can help to establish a framework that will let civilians – both local and international – do what is needed. because they lack the core therapeutic peace building skills that will help relationships grow again between hostile communities. Soldiers are well suited for this enabling role for three reasons. They can cover an area like a blanket with a systematic command. permitting cooperation to take root. In the following section we examine a peace building project in Bosnia that illustrates the innovative work of combining military and civilian assets in a broad approach to peace building. I would like to suggest an alternative. order. A mind-boggling array of international organizations and NGOs has tried to support this process in Bosnia. They arrive in organized groups with vehicles. Ramsbotham (eds. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution. The case further illustrates the contingency and complementary approach outlined in Lesson 7. good government. 80-96. “Organising for Effective Peace Building”. which would help deployed military forces to build human security from the bottom-up. They must help in the restoration of peace. they are not effective at cultivating cooperation. However. (Reprinted by permission. F ig u r e 2 : A r e a D e p loy m e n t of a P e a c e k e e p in g F or c e 2 B A C 1 ro ad s C otta g e in d u str y e x p or ts on r o u te 3 D 3 B o u nd ary o f area o f r e sp o n sib ility M arket gardens f o r lo c a l t o w n s I n te r -e n tity b o u n d a r y David Last (2000). 7. control and intelligence network.). but the rest depends ultimately on the locals. in T. and a sustainable economy. And they have the capacity to stifle violence. Soldiers cannot achieve these objectives. communications and their own security. pp. London: Frank Cass.) 5 .

and reconciliation. Each of the four towns in the area of operations depicted in Figure 2 might have a different mix of mobile and static teams. As the teams and mission evolve. each of which included local and international facilitators. Others worked in or from the centre itself. The Pearson Peacekeeping Centre experimented with a solution to these problems. reconciliation and governance might be more important later. and lack of reach into the surrounding areas because of the security problems experienced by the mobile teams. immediate aid and reconstruction. embodying a variety of skills depending on the evolution of its needs.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 156 Figure 2 shows the boundaries of a military unit or formation deployed on a peacekeeping mission. relief and development. The Neighbourhood Facilitators Project developed the concept of a community centre as a home base for teams. Each town has an economic and social zone around it. to provide translation and administrative services. creates barriers to economic and political recovery. and given further training that reflected the circumstances in Banja Luka. but the balance of skills may leave a leading role to international facilitators by default. there was a small local support staff. at least initially. the local-international partnership should be an equal one from the outset. culture. The locals and internationals were brought together in mixed teams. It then trained international facilitators and selected five for deployment to Bosnia. The dashed line represents a boundary between factions or formerly hostile entities. The most important limiting factors were lack of money for salaries and rent. and local history. the focus might be on refugee return. equipped to work away from the centre. The core of each team. Towns are lettered and routes are numbered. government and civil society. The boundary. Crucial to the success of the Neighbourhood Facilitators was the combination of local facilitators with diverse backgrounds. is an international facilitator. with most teams being mobile. The peace building challenges fall in four areas: security. and from Route 3 on which its exports must move. Development. That is precisely the situation faced by towns all over the Former Yugoslavia. The hostility does not disappear overnight. I was not knowledgeable enough in any of the peace building areas. and the difficulty of moving across it. and from March to July 1998. until they began to trickle in 6-12 months after the beginning of the mandate. and I did not have civilian NGOs or international agencies to work with. The Neighbourhood Facilitators Project trained 20 local Bosnian Muslims. Some of the teams were mobile. or cottage industry. I lacked sufficient knowledge of the language. local facilitators should be increasingly central. I could not find the moderate allies that I needed. The cottage industry is cut off from the town (D) that supplies its labour. Early on. It might be a NATO Battle Group deployed in Northwest Bosnia or Kosovo. resource extraction. for example. including the difficulties associated with minority return. and internationals who provided expertise and a link to the supporting international community. A community centre with a mobile team was established. Ideally. Within each centre. market gardens. the facilitators helped local people develop solutions to their own problems. As a civil affairs officer in Bosnia in the first six months of NATO’s deployment. . Serbs and Croats in Banja Luka in a variety of interpersonal and conflict resolution skills.

co-operative way of doing business. of the sort developed by Peace Brigades International. for example. .) A team dealing with minority return will need economic and reconciliation expertise. they help to rebuild the country from the ground-up. In Bosnia. Working in small teams at community level. At the outset. The expertise must be sufficient to teach others and lead them in action. As the confidence and co-operation of local allies grows. local and international facilitators can use access to international resources to reward co-operation and help rebuild the relationships that were destroyed by violent conflict. might need to include someone with detailed knowledge of non-violent security techniques. and reconciliation. The balance of skills and resources needed for a successful international intervention should change as a mission evolves. This includes the ability to transcend the barriers that separate locals and internationals. developing people who will stay there for the long haul.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 157 What do these teams do? A community centre and its teams can be the glue for all the other services and organisations that come to its area to help repair the damage of violent conflict. Because they are part of a formal and well supported structure. catalytic and leadership skills will be most important. and the local population. The teams embody a mixture of individual skills – a broad understanding of all the issues. They are the nucleus of a new. as long as violence is controlled. Self-awareness and ability to work with people across cultural and linguistic barriers is a basic prerequisite. soldiers and civilians. (When the threat is very high. NGOs. Because the teams are fundamentally local as well as international. teams may travel with military units. or to help prepare for elections. Local and international facilitators must possess a variety of skills to be selected. Governance expertise may become increasingly important later in a mission to teach democracy and develop civil society. security. international organisations. necessary skills fall into four categories: Economic. Beyond this. training and education skills will become increasingly important. plus deeper expertise in specific areas. Because they are party to a larger campaign plan. they are a reliable interface between a multinational military force or observer mission. Many small interactions at local-level multiply the chance that co-operation will take hold and spread. A team operating across boundaries or in an area with vulnerable minorities. governance. they can facilitate local and international effort at the community level.

Locals must take over these functions before the process can become self-sustaining. in parallel with a transition in the mechanisms for controlling violent behaviour. paramilitary and military forces. and making the transition to full local ownership requires nurturing and mentoring skills.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 158 it was probably about two years before this occurred. developing new programmes to meet evolving need. Ramsbotham (eds. (Reprinted by permission. in T. David Last (2000). Woodhouse and O. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution.). local civilian police can take over the control of violence through community policing. pp. Figure 36 illustrates this sequence in the evolution of a mission. This sequence implies a deliberate but gradual reduction in the international presence. London: Frank Cass. “Organising for Effective Peace Building”. Training and education are used to develop local capacity to perform the key community-building functions. Violence is brought under control early on by a concerted effort from police. Locals gradually take over the process of building relationships between formerly hostile communities.) 6 . 80-96. Sustaining progress. As local institutions develop.

(1997). Boulder/London: Lynne Rienner. 80-96. pp. Last. Contemporary Conflict Resolution.). (2000).) Kumar.P. “Post-Settlement Peace Building”. Washington.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 159 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. Woodhouse and O. Rebuilding Societies After Civil War. Building Peace: Sustainable Reconciliation in Divided Societies. 185-215. DC: United States Institute of Peace. “Organising for Effective Peace Building”. (Chapter VII. D. Cambridge: Polity Press. Krishna (1997) (ed. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution.). Lederach. J. London: Frank Cass. In T. Ramsbotham (eds. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). . pp.

How many sectors or “pillars” are involved in the civilian aspects of restoring peace in Kosovo? a. Which of the phrases below best describes the overall and long-term objectives of post-conflict peace building? a. The Middle East (UNTSO) 3. NATO 5. 2 b. restoring trust and constructing a self-sustaining peace 4. 4 c. In June 1999 the United Nations Security Council established UNMIK. restoring public services d. Which of the following best describes its overall mandate? a. 8 . The Agenda for Peace c. The European Union c. 6 d.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 160 LESSON 8 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. The United Nations b. to establish a civilian administration and to develop substantial autonomy for Kosovo 6. providing security c. Namibia (UNTAG) b. The United Nations Charter b. India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) c. In which document was the idea of post-conflict peace building first defined? a. to prevent arms trafficking c. to secure the border between Serbia and Kosovo b. stopping violence b. The Blue Helmets 2. The UN’s experience in post-conflict peace building was heavily influenced by which of the following missions: a. KFOR was established in June 1999 as an operation under the command of: a.

creates public consciousness. find out truths. Answer Key: 1-b. legitimate authority. IFOR e. 5-c.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 161 7. 7-a. 8-military/security issues. ensuring local factions are disarmed c. KFOR f. building a peace constituency and resources within the conflict setting 10. amnesty-seekers did not have to ask for forgiveness. Identify one advantage and one disadvantage of the use of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa.) a. Which of the following are lead agencies in civilian and military aspects of restoring peace in Kosovo? (Choose five. economic/social debilitation. Medecins sans Frontieres 8. short time-span. 9-c. b. 10-advantages: provides space to tell story. 6-b. 9. c. 4-c. f. . breaks silence. Which of the following terms best defines the objectives of peace building from below? a. List these below. 3-d. UNHCR c. In the perspective of conflict resolution. OSCE d. psycho-social issues. e. public acknowledgement of guilt. accessible. political/constitutional incapacity. The United Nations b. disadvantages: not a justice tribunal. 2-a. The European Union g. UN operations concerned with post-conflict peace building should attempt to correct four “deficits”. The IMF h. implementing the peace agreements made by politicians b.

Your office is busy and every day you have calls and visits asking if you can help with various problems. part of the SFOR operation in Bosnia. To allow the student to apply his/her conflict resolution knowledge to challenging situations a peacekeeping environment.. You are planning around-the-clock to work out where the gaps might be (i. The Situation You are an officer in charge of CIMIC (Civil-Military Affairs Centre). you think it would be a good idea to provide space for local NGOs to hold their meetings. You interpret the role of SFOR as being to establish the security space or conditions. A description of your situation and responsibilities is given below. where UNHCR and the NGOs may need military back-up to get supplies in). Your task in the exercise is to make a preliminary assessment of how you might manage this problem. Without adequate shelter. Your job as Officer in Command of CIMIC is to deal with civil affairs: to liase with the public and non-military agencies. You only have a small staff working for you (four soldiers). whereby the job of the civil administration (UNMIBH) can be achieved. thousands of people will be at risk. Within your building. For example. The focus of the UN’s work is on this “winterisation” programme. and to ensure that the role of SFOR is efficiently achieved. You also have a plan to use schools in your sector to serve as emergency shelters (for people whose homes are not warm/secure) and as collective centers for the worst months of the winter. which is tasked with helping to develop democratic organizations in the community. Method: You are to take the role of a peacekeeper involved in the co-ordination of civil-military affairs in an area of conflict undergoing the early stages of post-conflict peace building. You also have good contacts in the OSCE office. you are also concerned to maximize its use for the benefit of the “community”. . In the course of your work you become aware that there is possible corruption and intimidation occurring in the building in which you are based.e. You are based in a building in a city center. Your main responsibility is supporting UNHCR and the NGOs in your sector to effectively deliver the basic material needed to ensure that the returning refugees and existing inhabitants of the villages can survive the oncoming winter. but you have good lines of communication up to the SFOR Commander and to the UNMIBH Civil Administration. food and fuel.Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 162 Exercise: A CIMIC Dilemma Aims: To encourage the student to explore the importance of CIMIC in co-ordinating civilian-military peace building activities.

What are the most important issues here? What options are available to you to address these issues? What actions would you take in this situation? Why? What might the likely outcomes be? . Task Consider the following questions and write a brief report (maximum one page).Lesson8/Peace Settlements and Post-Conflict Peace Building 163 Your Problem You are beginning to wonder who or what the community that you are trying to help actually amounts to. The building is also occupied by a Bosnian Muslim man. supplying coffee and sandwiches for the international staff and for the local people who are coming in and out of the building. though there majority are Bosnian Muslim. You suspect that he is the source of the threats being made to the NGO staff and that he is trying to frighten the Serb to leave the building. as are some of the NGO activists who are beginning to run their meetings in the building. One of the people in the building is a young Serb man who is trying to establish a small business. You become aware that he is being threatened/intimidated. There are a small number of Serbs in the town.

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7. 5. Somalia Operations: Lesson Learned . If a map is accurate and you can read it you won’t get lost. Just as a map isn’t the territory but an abstract representation of a particular area. 3.US Special Envoy to Somalia (UNITAF). if you know a culture you will know your way about in the life of a society. CONFLICT RESOLUTION AND PEACEKEEPING 1. . . the culture. and artefacts of a human group. Anthropologist. deeds. US Army. the ground and the language as a pre-condition of military operations. 4. so also a culture is an abstract description of trends towards uniformity in the words. . you have a much better chance of achieving your mission. 2.LESSON 9 CULTURE.Colonel Ken Allard. Introduction Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice Cultural Response 1 Cultural Response 2 Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping Case Study: Intervention in Somalia Developing Cultural Awareness Skills Culture is like a map. 1950 If you know a country and a culture.Clyde Kluckhohn. Robert Oakley Somalia underlines the importance of knowing the country. 6.

Describe some of the cultural problems that occurred during the operations in Somalia. Begin to consider how culture influences his/her beliefs and values about conflict and conflict resolution. Conflict Resolution. After studying the material contained in this lesson. The theoretical basis for this is outlined and a framework which enables culture sensitive approaches to be developed in conflict resolution processes is explained. . Identify the levels of intercultural interaction in contemporary peacekeeping operations. and Peacekeeping 166 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson examines the importance of culture as a factor influencing conflict behaviour. the student will be able to: S S S S S S Offer a cultural critique of universally applied conflict resolution theory and practice.Lesson 9/Culture. Integrate a culture perspective into his/her peacekeeping practice. Summarise two of the cultural approaches that have resulted from these critiques. The relevance of cultural issues in peacekeeping is then examined both in general terms and in relation to the experiences in Somalia.

Like an iceberg. < is a complex responsive process. European. nine-tenths of culture is out of conscious awareness.. < changes over time. through which experience is interpreted and carried out. there are many cultural groups that exist within the larger ones – micro-cultures (e. the field of Conflict Resolution has largely reflected Western intellectual assumptions.. that its principles and techniques can be applied across all social and cultural contexts of conflict. civilian). Traditionally. 2. American. values and behaviours shared by the members of a community or group. gender.e.g. His human needs theory is based on the idea that universal patterns of . Yet. including peacekeeping operations. class. Introduction Until recently. This “hidden” part of culture is referred to as deep culture. but rather multiple cultures. most would now agree that culture does matter: lack of sensitivity to cultural issues can have a limiting impact on the effectiveness of conflict resolution initiatives. values and rationality about the nature of conflict and its resolution.1 A Cultural Critique of Conflict Resolution Developed by scholars working in institutions throughout Europe and North America. beliefs. expectations. i. Although culture is usually used to refer to relatively large groups of people and the boundaries between cultures often coincide with ethnic and political boundaries (e. CULTURE A working definition of culture is: a system of both implicit and explicit meanings. military. Conflict Resolution. and Peacekeeping 167 1. Culture in Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice 2. Lessons learned from the operations in Somalia clearly illustrate how lack of cultural awareness may obstruct the potential effectiveness of peacekeeping.g. < is not merely a custom. Asian). Culture: < is not stable or homogenous. The reality of contemporary peacekeeping requires that culture be considered as it influences conflict intervention on several different levels. For example.Lesson 9/Culture. Zambian. the discipline has falsely assumed that its theories and methods have universal applicability.. age. the importance of culture in conflict and conflict intervention was underestimated by scholars and practitioners in Conflict Resolution. Individuals do not embody a single culture. John Burton has contributed to the development of a “generic” theory of conflict and conflict resolution.

Conflict is embedded in diverse cultural frameworks. intimate setting Takes place within normal daily routine Time is extended . interpersonal Consensual Community-based Indoors or outdoors. unfamiliar setting Scheduled event Time constraints Non-Western Model Restore relationships. TABLE 9-1: Comparison of Western and Non-Western Conflict Resolution Processes Western Model Purpose Focus on conflict issues Negotiate concrete agreements Formal. linear process . private forum. the Western field of Conflict Resolution is only now beginning to formalise an understanding of conflict and its resolution that. and Peacekeeping 168 behaviour exist. non-directive. at minimum. While conflict is universal. Each experiences its own conception of conflict and techniques and processes for managing and resolving it.Lesson 9/Culture. directive.) Therefore.. circular process Process Setting Organisation of Time Issues Communication Focus on issues related to immediate conflict. one that transcends all differences of ethnicity and culture. (Table 9-1 compares the Western model of conflict resolution with the Non-Western model. for many centuries. making possible a generic approach to conflict resolution. poetry. the means of which have always existed within social and cultural groups. consider the varying cultural interpretations of conflict and conflict resolution. preserve harmony Informal. has been practised by people around the world. lasting as long as is necessary to reach an agreement Focus on issues as embedded in social network Facts and feelings may be relayed through storytelling. the prescription of a Western approach to conflict intervention that fails to. etc. public forum. Conflict Resolution. In fact. is not only inappropriate but often ineffective. the ways in which it is expressed and managed are not. isolated from social network Fact specific. demonstrating the broad cultural differences between them. bureaucratic Consensual Individually-based Indoors.

although narrow in application. professional Often known. respected outsider insider Authority gained through Authority based on status credentials and training in community and (procedural wisdom (substantive knowledge) knowledge) Impartiality is essential Trust emphasised over impartiality Often no direct power Often direct power to advise. the presence of thousands of military and civilian personnel from numerous countries in conflict zones around the world. sometimes have decision-making powers Obtain results that are Settlement to restore mutually satisfactory to balance and harmony conflict parties (winto the community or win) adherence to right and wrong (win-lose) Written. The anthropological literature is abundant in ethnographic case studies of traditional dispute settlement and indigenous conflict management (primarily from the field of legal anthropology) in small-scale societies. are important foundations for the culture critique of contemporary conflict resolution.g. trying to achieve common conflict resolution goals.Lesson 9/Culture. and Peacekeeping 169 Role and Responsibilities of Third Party Role and Responsibilities of Community Resolution Conclusion Anonymous. signed agreement Personal word (oral) agreement more binding Usually none Ritual of reconciliation (e. payment for damages. counsel persuade and/or coerce. make decisions Wider community not Wider community usually involved involved.. . shared meal.2 The Culture Question The relationship between culture and conflict has been studied in anthropology for some time. gift exchange) 2. Conflict Resolution. These studies. can exert pressure on parties to settle. apologyforgiveness ritual. However.

Black and J. anthropologists and conflict resolution scholars at the Institute for Conflict Analysis (ICAR) at George Mason University (Virginia.1 Ethnoconflict Theory To understand conflict behaviour. political and economic structures. they are variables within a cultural system that. they developed a unique theoretical perspective to conflict resolution. an abundance of culturally constituted techniques and processes. for managing and resolving conflict around the world (e. Black (1991). 1 K. P. and a variety of INGOs and NGOs. regional organisations.g. outside of the framework they may lead to conflict). London: Greenwood. through the UN.A. is a powerful analytical tool. There have been several important contributions to the culture question in Conflict Resolution. including language. The depth of cultural ignorance and misunderstanding and the inappropriateness of attempted conflict resolution approaches are undeniable. They proposed that culture. both formal and informal ethnopraxes. the local common-sense about conflict. influence the thinking and behaviour of the individuals in the group. Cultural Response 1 Kevin Avruch and Peter Black.. With this in mind. All human groups have developed their own ways of responding to conflict. helped to bring the culture question to the fore in conflict resolution theory. Peace and Change.2 Ethnopraxes Ethnopraxes are the corresponding conflict resolution techniques and practices. and Peacekeeping 170 has shown up major cultural discontinuities. simply. Hawaiian ho’oponopono. The unexpected expansion in peacemaking. as a concept. USA). See also. peacekeeping and Peace Building work in areas of conflict in the 1990s. They refer to this cultural knowledge as ethnoconflict theory or. In addition to prescribing the rules for conflict regulation within a given society. 3. Avruch and Black argue that it is necessary to attend to the local understandings of being and action which people use in the production and interpretation of conflict behaviour. religion and folk psychology (or.). has propelled the “culture question” in Conflict Resolution to the top of the agenda.Lesson 9/Culture. these determinants are not sources of conflict (although. Avruch and P. 16 (1): 31-32. 3.1 3. Scimecca (1991) (eds. In terms of this analytical framework. interdependent determinants that vary cross-culturally. Conflict Resolution: Cross-Cultural Perspectives. social. consequently. Two responses – in the form of culture-specific methodologies – will be considered below. Avruch. . over time. ethnoconflict theory may also inform outsiders of the most appropriate strategies for intervention.W. There is. K. “ethnopsychology” – the local assumptions about people and relationships). Ethnoconflict theory is influenced by a set of complex. Conflict Resolution. “The Culture Question and Conflict Resolution”.

The goal of the training (or intervention) is to learn/accept the model. he observed that North American conflict resolution training and practises (specifically. Conflict Resolution. From this. Inuit song duels. 4. which can be applied to intervention strategies: the prescriptive approach on one end and the elicitive approach on the other. 4. the conflict resolution practitioner must situate the conflict in the disputant’s frame of reference. the elicitive approach is based on building or creating appropriate models from the cultural resources available in a given setting. From his experiences conducting workshops on mediation and conflict management skills in Central America. the trainer (or third party) is assumed to be the expert. a conflict resolution scholar-practitioner at the Eastern Mennonite University (USA). firstly. Tongan kava drinking circles.Lesson 9/Culture. and (2) it assumes that the trainer (or third party’s) ways are best. Lederach developed a spectrum of conflict resolution training approaches. However.. he/she must understand how the participant interprets the boundaries and context of the conflict. there are problems . and Peacekeeping 171 San xotla. the mediation model) could not be effectively exported to other cultural settings. Pakistani jirga system. negotiation. Within this approach. However. There are two problems with the prescriptive approach: (1) it assumes a certain level of universality. Somali shirs). was amongst the first to move beyond the mere recognition of cultural factors impeding conflict resolution to the creation of a specific methodological framework. The goal of the training (or intervention) is to elevate the participants’ own knowledge to an explicit level and to use this common-sense knowledge as a basis for constructing intervention models for the conflicts they will encounter in their own cultural context. The expertise is brought together in the form of a model that includes strategies to resolve conflict and techniques to implement the approach.g. He concluded that. Cultural Response 2 John Paul Lederach. there is great variation in the form and content of these concepts and processes (e. This “contextualisation” is the exercise of ethnoconflictology – the study of how people make sense of conflict situations and the appropriate (cultural) common-sense methods of resolving them. Indian panchayats. Essentially. The fundamental feature of the elicitive approach is that it cannot operate apart from culture. The strategies found in non-Western societies may not be substantially dissimilar from Western approaches to conflict resolution and may feature familiar concepts such as mediation. the approach aims to get at what Avruch and Black call ethnoconflict theory and practice. The trainer (or third party) acts as a catalyst and facilitator drawing out the cultural understandings about conflict and conflict resolution.2 Elicitive Approach In contrast. the role and responsibilities of the third party may differ.1 Prescriptive Approach The prescriptive approach is based on transferring conflict resolution techniques from one setting to another. There are also many practices that are unique to the cultures in which they are found. 4. the format and outcome of the resolution process vary). primarily referring to the transfer of Western methods to Non-Western settings. and third party intervention.

Lesson 9/Culture.. (2) the proposed outcomes are not easily measured. solutions are derived from cultural resources. in part. as seen in the Paris Peace Agreements during the operation in Cambodia. on the other hand. state-centric (official) conflict management aimed at the leadership of the conflicting parties (i.1 Macro-Level At the macro-level. relying on community actors and local knowledge. It should be made clear that the prescriptive model is not to be discarded. including the cultural understanding of conflict and its resolution. Rubinstein (1989). the prescriptive approach may provide participants/conflict parties with new techniques or strategies for dealing with conflict.A. interpreted and understood. 5. top-down. The elicitive approach has important implications for Peace Building-from-Below (Lesson 8).2 Culture is therefore of concern at both the macro. this approach may not be traditionally appropriate nor culturally accepted. Cultural Issues in Peacekeeping Problems associated with culture have arisen. The convergence of bottom-up elicitive processes with top-down (state-level) political negotiations produces a more holistic approach to conflict intervention. 2 .e. Yet. to the local population upon whose territory it is carried out – is part of a cultural framework. Everyone involved in a peacekeeping operation – from those planning the mission. the international community frequently prescribes linear. and often warlords and faction leaders without majority support of the community).and micro. International Affairs. local community leaders are not consulted and there is a failure to recognise and buildupon the cultural strengths and resources of the local community (i. the best conflict resolution training and intervention programmes benefit from combining aspects of both models. An example of an attempt to establish stability is the negotiated settlement package that focuses on democratic elections aimed at re-establishing political authority. addresses the cultural uniqueness of the context and validates/employs the local techniques and strategies. 2 (1): 41-61. expressed. In the Peace Building-from-Below perspective.levels of peacekeeping. R. Peace Building-frombelow). to the military and civilian peacekeepers deployed to carry it out. the elicitive approach. There is an assumption that this approach is “right”. 5. values and actions are constructed. This framework provides the context within which the actors’ beliefs. without considering the reality of the conflict on the ground as viewed by the people directly involved. usually men. from the expanded nature of contemporary peacekeeping operations (although cultural issues are evident to some degree in traditional missions): today’s missions are multiculturally composed and transnationally performed across a diversity of cultural contexts. Cultural Dynamics. “Culture. and (4) multicultural settings represent an enormous challenge.. On the one hand. and Peacekeeping 172 with the elicitive model: (1) it takes time and involves considerable commitment.e. or the national reconciliation conferences initiated by UNOSOM in Somalia. and Multilateral Peacekeeping: Confusing Process and Pattern”. (3) the creation process can often be painful for the participants. Often. Conflict Resolution.

and Peacekeeping 173 The short-term. which. touch. peacekeeping and peacemaking are separated from Peace Building.2 Micro-Level It is important to understand how culture influences the interpersonal interactions between culturally diverse individuals and groups operating in a peacekeeping environment. gestures. worldview. “quick-fix” approach ignores or trivialises the bottom-up perspective that focuses on long-term conflict transformation. (4) the peacekeepers (military and civilian personnel) and the local population. and cultural rituals and practices. Serious attention must be given to the cultural applicability of the conflict resolution processes employed by the intervention and its participants. (3) the military and civilian organisations involved in establishing and sustaining the mission. and (5) the different cultural or ethnic groups who may be in conflict. The purpose here is to understand the dynamics of cultural differences before they lead to misunderstandings and conflict at the micro-level. verbal and non-verbal language (e. (2) the diverse personnel who work with diplomatic. In other words.g. Conflict Resolution. use of time). Intercultural contact in peacekeeping environments occurs on a number of different levels. understanding cultural issues is vital. 5. humanitarian and other civilian agencies.. including between: (1) the national contingents that comprise a peacekeeping force. facial expressions.3 Levels of Cultural Interaction in Peacekeeping Environments Given the complex reality of contemporary peacekeeping intervention.Lesson 9/Culture. may obstruct the macro-level intervention process. DIAGRAM 9-1: Cultural Interaction in Peacekeeping . 5. space. This includes awareness of cultural differences in perspectives toward conflict and conflict resolution. in conflict resolution terms.

language. better and fuller cultural understanding of the conflict and the local population’s traditions is required: consent will be promoted if the parties feel understood and are made shareholders of the peace process.. local understanding of the conflict and local resources for its resolution. approaches to time and success (short-term objectives versus long-term processes). Discontinuities not only hamper the military efficiency of the mission. Peacekeepers (Military/Civilian) and Local Communities: In recent peacekeeping operations. civilian police. NGO (international humanitarian.g. a blue beret or a blue helmet. UN. Unrecognised differences may hamper co-ordination of humanitarian activities.g. approaches to accountability. However. use of force. To preserve consent and legitimacy.g. . media styles (secrecy and control versus theatrical). the way an organisation approaches its tasks and its relationships with other organisations. Faced with the immediate requirements to secure the environment and save lives. staff procedures. according to its own understanding of the conflict situation and its own intervention policies and practices. military and civilian agencies frequently clash over the basic questions of the means and ends of the mission. but influence local perceptions regarding the credibility and legitimacy of the operation. Each operates within its own cultural framework.. quality) and the cultural diversity of its personnel. Because of the different organisational cultures. and relations with the local populations.. Bosnia. hierarchy and procedure versus fast-moving flexibility and decentralisation). human rights.Lesson 9/Culture. Differences may lead to misunderstandings. chains of command. There are several very different organisational cultures operating in contemporary peacekeeping environments: international/diplomatic (e. the distinctiveness of which is not erased by a UN uniform. In-depth predeployment cultural training about the conflict parties is not seen as a priority. Rwanda). the principles of consent and impartiality have been seriously challenged for the sake of humanitarian intervention (e. expertise. operational and management styles (command structures. and cultural customs and ethos. peacekeeping actors frequently arrive in the field with little or no knowledge of the cultural customs. The need to promote better understanding of each other’s cultural organisation and function is essential to enhance coordination and co-operation in the field. Conflict Resolution. or create negative stereotypes and suspicions that further impede collaboration. peacekeeping personnel may sacrifice cultural sensitivity in their interactions with those affected by the conflict. maintaining good relations (based on consent and legitimacy) with the local communities is a prerequisite for successful missions. Military-Military: Every international peacekeeping force is composed of troops from a multitude of nations and cultures. its objectives. and local/grassroots). in terms of both the nature of the organisation (e. development and conflict resolution. training and doctrine. Somalia. use of force. They differ in methods of decision-making. and Peacekeeping 174 Civilians-Civilians: The humanitarian community in any peacekeeping environment is extremely diverse. Each troop-contributing nation differs in mission objectives and standards. rules of engagement. Military-Civilian: An organisational culture is the way a group is organised and how it functions. OSCE). size. military. equipment.

using proactive enforcement techniques. Throughout the various phases of the intervention. the military . UNOSOM I was established in April 1992. in particular the use of force. logistics. under Chapter VI. and Peacekeeping 175 intervention will be viewed as legitimate if peacekeepers invest time to understand and support the local resources and institutions.000 troops to the three multinational forces). In an effort to assist in terminating the civil war and in securing a stable environment.Lesson 9/Culture. it was accompanied by a US-led coalition force (UNITAF) to restore order to the country.1 The Peacekeeping Force Given the size and diversity of the peacekeeping force in Somalia (more than 30 nations contributed up to 37. some some problems emerged as a result of cultural misunderstanding. US troops sought to coerce co-operation.and macro-levels. Conflict Resolution. until March 1995 when the UN pulled all its forces out of the country. cultural issues are evident at both the micro. mediation and fostering local support. Command and control was another challenge that reduced the mission’s effectiveness. While the operations in Somalia presented the international community with numerous unexpected challenges. For example. command.. This gave rise to severe tensions and feudal fiefdoms between contingents.g. From the very onset. Some forces were dissatisfied with the American-led UNITAF. 6. In December 1992. causing co-ordination problems and risking the multinational force’s legitimacy among the Somali community.2 Military and Civilian Co-operation Although military-civilian co-operation was sufficient to improve security and provide humanitarian assistance (largely as a result of the Civil-Military Operations Centre (CMOC)). UNITAF was replaced by UNOSOM II operating under a peace enforcement mandate (Chapter VII). to provide humanitarian relief. in disarming the Somali militias. two UN peacekeeping operations and a US-led multinational peacekeeping operations were deployed. One of the most observable problems resulted from divergent national military cultures’ interpretation and execution of the rules of engagement. Case Study: Intervention in Somalia The Somali civil war broke out in September 1991 when various factions attempted to gain control over the political and military vacuum resulting from the collapse of President Siad Barre’s regime in January 1990. In May 1993. language and pre-deployment preparation were present. the Australians) was based on dialogue. In contrast. the intervention clearly illustrated the cultural challenges facing contemporary peacekeeping. 6. cultural differences in peacekeeping approach. The international community’s experience in Somalia clearly demonstrates the critical need for cultural understanding at all levels of peacekeeping intervention. 6. Some contingents would not work with or for others contingents. they received orders from home and pursued their own political agendas. the approach of other units (e.

an excuse to do the minimum and go home. Smith (ed.3 Misunderstanding Somali Culture The most significant issues affecting peacekeeping in Somalia were those related to the failure to understand Somali culture before and during the intervention. and that the military was there in a supplemental role to directly support their humanitarian efforts. Lack of cultural 3 4 J. social and political realities of the situation. without the willingness to consult those with knowledge. They found them insensitive to Somali suffering and viewed their concern over “mission creep” as obsessive. many relief workers saw military officers as inflexible. P. incompetent. 6. neither side brought the other into their planning process until it was nearly complete. The efficiency of humanitarian co-ordination was also reduced because of the significant numbers of NGOs operating without proper experience or understanding of the country and. Conflict Resolution. Officers simply did not see women in their late-twenties with Birkenstock sandals and “Save the Whales” T-shirts as experts worthy of consultation. This strained relations and had a significant effect on co-ordination. rather than collaborate. Individually. leading them to adopt a dictatorial role towards the NGOs. the military found it difficult to work with humanitarian organisations because of their high turn-over rates. This attitude was unwelcome and unproductive as the soldiers were less knowledgeable about the cultural. At the same time. and Peacekeeping 176 and civilian components had very different perceptions of their mission and their roles: the military believed that their primary responsibility was to secure the environment – a military role which would indirectly assist humanitarian agencies – and viewed the humanitarian agencies as having a supporting role. . they saw relief workers as young. Joint Forces Quarterly. Differences in organisational culture also created mutual suspicion and negative stereotyping: The military was frustrated by what they viewed as disorganization and waste growing out of a tendency not to conduct detailed planning. self-righteous. In several cases. Kieseker (1993). “Relationships Between Non-Government Organisations and Multinational Forces in the Field”. anti-military. Dworken (1995). The tendency for aid agencies to compete. p. also exaggerated differences and made co-ordination difficult.Lesson 9/Culture. “Restore Hope: Co-ordinating Relief Operations”. The UN agencies and NGOs. liberal. they were inclined to “do their own thing”.68. and bureaucratic. 8: 19-20. As a result of their ill-defined roles. Instead. Peacekeeping: Challenges for the Future. however. Canberra: Australian Defence Force Academy. the military and humanitarian agencies failed to involve each other in decisions that required co-operative military-civilian relations. expatriate cowboys who came to an area for a short time to “do good” without fully considering the consequences. academic.3 Some soldiers displayed an attitude of “only we understand the security situation”. believed that their responsibilities were primary. the respective organisational cultures dictated the disparate intervention strategies the military and civilian components adopted and the uncooperative attitudes they developed towards each other.). in H. conservative. often.4 On the other hand.

! No titles are attached to pasturage. sub-clans. however. and regular harassment by some troops. which defines the values and rules of behaviour. Many contingents arrived in the mission area without knowledge of Somalia. and fishermen and traders on the coast. leading to mistrust and estrangement from the local population. Special Representative to the Secretary General. ! There is fierce competition for scarce resources. For example. However.5 There are several cultural features of Somali society that required particular understanding to effectively engage in sustainable conflict resolution activities. clans. ! The clan is the most important social and political unit. ! Society is based on nomadic. the Australian contingent consulted the NGO CARE Australia to assist with preparation. Mohamed Sahnoun. there is no centralised authority in Somali culture. 30. power was exercised through flexible and constantly shifting alliances of kinship groups. the UN finally recognised the impending crisis in Somalia and its immediate response was to send in forces. 5 Ibid. Sahnoun has openly criticised this strategy as it was applied without any real understanding of the cultural conditions on the ground. and Peacekeeping 177 understanding started from the highest level of decision-making at the very beginning. ! There is a social code based on traditions and customary law.e.Lesson 9/Culture. the remaining Somalis are agropastoralists/agriculturalists occupying stable villages. and nation). . including indiscriminate use of force. The Australians also adopted a conscientious “marketing approach” in Baidoa during Operation Restore Hope: they were “marketeers” who were interested in the “customer”. visiting the NGOs and Somali communities and asking “what can we do for you?”. ! Traditionally. its history and culture. lineages. Analysis using the ethnoconflict theory/ethnopraxis framework or elicitive approach may have better informed the processes employed by the international community in the Somali case. there were significant differences in how the national troops dealt with the local population. Lack of attention to these elements most certainly affected the outcome of UNOSOM/UNITAF. urged the UN not to send troops until the conditions had been negotiated: the warlords were against UN military intervention and the presence of troops would intensify the fighting. extended families. prior to their deployment. Conflict Resolution. some contingents took the time to enhance their understanding of Somali culture. communal living. families. Somali Ethnoconflict Theory and Ethnopraxis Economic. human rights abuses. After months of delay. except those resulting from force. clan families. ! There is a complex system of kinship (i. As a result. yet the UN’s response was to continue to send in troops until. Sahnoun eventually persuaded the factions to accept 500 troops to secure the delivery of humanitarian aid..000 troops were deployed in Somalia. it fosters a sense of community and protects its members. Social and Political Structures ! 60-70% of Somalis practice pastoralism: camels are the base of material and cultural life. they were “consumer-oriented”. or the conditions on the ground. in the end. The unfortunate behaviour of a small number of troops damaged the credibility of the UN mission.

and inter-clan conflicts through a religious and political moral order or commonwealth (umma) upheld by kinship xeer and Islamic law ! Resort to force is viewed as culturally accepted procedure for regulating conflict. they fulfil an important role as peacemaker. the purpose of the feud is to redress wrongs. ! The spoken word is still the key to power and influence. Conflict between clans is regulated by a neutral tribunal or panel of arbitrators ( guurti). Shirs are characterised by lengthy. open councils (shirs) act as conflict resolution forums. ! The wadaad often act as mediators in inter-clan feuds. depending on the context. gain access to resources. Within clans. ! Somalis are deeply suspicious of non-Somali foreigners and members of other clans. they act as go-betweens or intermediaries 6. The clan is led by respected elders. Somalis are often referred to as the “nation of poets”. someone may be a friend or an enemy. Although women are excluded from the councils. Conflict Resolution. acquire/maintain honour. often held under the acacia tree. ! Somalis distinguish between “men of God” (wadaad. 50 for a woman’s). Language ! Somalis share a common language. or sheikh) and “men of the spear” (waranleh.Lesson 9/Culture. or warriors). ! Poetry is intimately connected with local politics and clan feuds. Settlements are reached by the payment of blood compensation or arbitration. ! They differentiate between “those who are near” (sokeeye) and “those who are distant” ( shisheeye). Religious Structure ! Somalis practice a mixture of Islam (Sufi) and indigenous religious traditions. Ethnopraxes ! Management of intra. oratory and poetry is the primary mode of mass communication and knowledge/information dissemination. it has been both a source of violence and peace. ! Somali culture is strongly rooted in oral traditions. there was no official system of writing the Somali language. Shir Nabadeeds are large peace councils assembled to instigate conciliation between conflicting clans. Ethnopsychology ! The Somali worldview is based on the need to survive in a harsh environment. which is responsible for the collective payment and receipt of blood compensation (usually in camels – 100 for a man’s life. is used as a literal request for information.4 Politics and the Somali Clan The importance of the clan system as a political institution and a source of pride and social security in Somali society was misunderstood. The informal clan council (shir) of men acts as a government institution and a court for the arbitration of disputes. decisions in the shir are reached by consensus. ! Islamic law (ShariNa) is used with traditional customary law (xeer). failure to settle results in expulsion from group. The notion of collective responsibility (embedded in . open negotiations and the use of poetry. and Peacekeeping 178 ! ! ! The most stable political grouping within a clan is the diya-paying group. ! The traditional greeting – “Is it Peace?” – shouted at a distance while approaching. ! Until 1972. because of intermarriage between clans. they are born orators and have the ability to debate and negotiate. or through the use of male elders as mediators (ergo).

In their desperate attempt to nullify Aideed’s power base – by offering US$25. in addition to leaflet drops. and so forth. Eventually. poetry and oratory play crucial roles in politics.e. This key cultural difference explains much of the problem encountered by international diplomacy in Somalia throughout the crisis. UNITAF’s Joint Psychological Operations Task Force (JPOTF) acknowledged this cultural oversight and. . war and peace. In the West. SRSG Sahnoun. Somali time is traditionally measured by the movements of herds and the availability of food. the JPOTF broadcast news on military activities. and Peacekeeping 179 Somali customary law and diya. the international community held General Aideed individually responsible for his failure to co-operate in finding a solution to the conflict. in contrast to the linear style of. They were ignored. it failed to realise that it also took on his clan who would support and protect their leader from a “hostile clan”.6 An Oral Society Somali culture is rooted in oral traditions. public service announcements and messages of peace in Somali. At the beginning. UN Special Envoy Robert Oakley and others (including peacekeepers on the ground working with local communities) adapted their diplomatic styles in accordance with Somali culture (i. This approach gave the main Somali warlords power and authority which they desired. Western negotiation: Somalis will take an initial agreement made today as a point of departure for further negotiations tomorrow. Much of the nomads’ time was spent assembled under the acacia tree. and reciting poetry. the UN chose to drop leaflets over Somalia’s primarily oral population. UNSOM’s efforts were concentrated on reconciling the two main warlords (Aideed and Ali Mahdi). time is highly scheduled and broken down into minutes. meeting frequently and patiently with traditional community leaders). The UN made relentless demands and placed often unrealistic time constraints on the Somalis and the peace process.000 for information leading to his capture – UNOSOM II put him in a stronger position than before. instead. days. Despite this fundamental feature of Somali culture. However. Negotiations and reconciliation conferences that focused largely on the leaders the UN believed were the most powerful at the time upset the traditional balance of the Somali kinship system and failed to draw on the local resources. The UN’s insistence that a clan should hold the presidency of the country was also based on an important misunderstanding of the clan system and the decentralised nature of traditional Somali political institutions. This has influenced their dynamic circular negotiating and problemsolving style. payments) requires the clan to protect and support its members. Conflict Resolution. the UN was advised of the importance of effective radio broadcasting in the presentation of UN aims and policies and the use of oratory in counselling for peace. When the international community tried to marginalise Aideed. 6.5 Time and Talk The Somali conception of time is considerably different from Western conceptions. or blood money. time is slow and unscheduled.. discussing. 6. the UN’s desire for a rapid political solution contradicted the Somali oral tradition of “sitting carpet”. but which they legitimately did not possess. Rather than promoting the maintenance of traditional clan equilibrium and powersharing. As nomads. thus.Lesson 9/Culture. hours. for example. debating.

with political emphasis on the TNC. Imposition of the Western concept of government frustrated the Somalis because it was incompatible with Somali political culture rooted in decentralised. regional and national levels. and Peacekeeping 180 6. with the intention of being a two-track approach. a manifesto on national reconciliation. intellectuals. which isolated members from their constituencies. community representatives were only able to participate because of generous sponsorships given by international NGOs. the signatories of the agreement were the 15 faction leaders. These formal . once again. The provisional government structure was essentially a top-down structure. Although community representatives were able to make their voices heard.7 National Reconciliation: Top-Down or Bottom-Up Difficulties in cultural understanding in Somalia resulted in the UN’s prescribed top-down process for national reconciliation that thwarted early initiatives by Sahnoun and Oakley to build on local resources and traditional institutions. community-based systems of power. artists and local NGO representatives to attend. In March 1994. only this time the approach was clearly top-down. The UN practice of holding short formal peace conferences in regional capitals. grass-roots approach to the Somali conflict was ignored by the UN in favour of hierarchical political structures and formal. (Although Somali society was engaged in a protracted conflict. the UN attempted to revive the process of political reconciliation by convening another meeting in Nairobi. However. traditional means for resolving conflict were available. Faction leaders used the UN-sponsored national reconciliation conferences to enhance their own prestige within their clans rather than to seek a genuine solution. the UN attempted to establish transitional mechanisms of governance at the district. highly publicised. violated Somali practices. efforts were made to broaden the representation. The Addis Ababa Agreement proposed that the Transitional National Council (TNC) would be the “sole repository of Somali sovereignty” and the “prime political authority. egalitarian. In the end. Furthermore. traditional leaders.Lesson 9/Culture. Power and responsibility were delegated from the TNC down to the RCs and DCs. enabling traditional and religious leaders. ignored the critical role that elders. having legislative functions”. and women play in resolving conflict. In March 1993. In response to widespread criticism preceding the conference. Aideed and Ali Mahdi were brought together for face-to-face negotiations. Conflict Resolution.) The potential for a bottom-up. The Regional Councils and District Councils – in which composition appeared to indicate a bottom-up approach through local delegations – were dependent structures. while the faction leaders were lavishly treated. This divorced the faction leaders from the larger clan groups and further empowered their illegitimate positions. resulting in the signing of the Nairobi Declaration. the UN sponsored a national reconciliation conference in Addis Ababa. Somali peacemakers must be able to process the information. The Nairobi meeting brought widespread criticism as it was dominated by the same warlords who were responsible for the civil strife and the death and starvation of thousands of Somalis. costly peace conferences. negotiate. Critics argue that the UN dealt with the warlords as if they were national leaders and. women. the desired two-track approach to peace – with peacemaking at the grass-roots level parallelling a process of accommodating warlords at the top level – was dominated by the warlords. and consider their progress regularly.

These activities were most prominent in the successful grass-roots peacemaking processes in the north (e. used shirs and a guurti. community has confidence in them Uses traditional methods of problemsolving Uses experienced mediators (elders) chosen by the community Elders have authority Held inside the country Limited Agenda Common rules and values (xeer) Ability of elders to enforce/ensure implementation of agreements Consensus decision-making Equal representation by parties Community support Open time-table C C C C C C C C C C C C SHIR UN Lack of confidence in representatives Uses “Western” methods of problemsolving Involves politicians and diplomats. A comparison of shir Somali and shir UN is in Table 9-2. the three month-long meeting in Boroma. Conflict Resolution. often uninformed of Somali culture Authority with the UN Some held outside the country Ambitious agenda Lack of common xeer Lack of confidence in organisers and facilitators Western democratic Unequal representation External support Limited time-table 6 Adapted from. which led to a National Charter for the Republic of Somaliland. The Somali Conflict: Prospects for Peace. The international community also failed to acknowledge that traditional Somali reconciliation is an ongoing process of consultations. . did not involve UNOSOM. assemblies and negotiations and.Lesson 9/Culture. which. therefore. enabling the participation of elders and other community members and ensuring that these representatives were not isolated from their constituencies. for the most part. Bradbury (1994). and Peacekeeping 181 meetings did not allow the Somalis to meet in an atmosphere where they could speak openly and confidentially to one another.6 TABLE 9-2: Comparison of Shir Somali and Shir UN C C C C C C C C C C C C SHIR SOMALI Involves legitimate representatives. they allowed sufficient time for confidence-building and reconciliation. Serious attention to cultural factors enhanced these peace processes: they were always conducted in local areas.g. Oxford: Oxfam. take a considerable amount of time. and they employed traditional methods of resolving conflict. comprised of elders from three major clans in the region). M. What proved more successful than the large national/factional conferences were the locally and regionally based clan reconciliation conferences..

Cultural training needs to be strategically included in the preparation and training of anyone involved in a peacekeeping mission. . (2) understand others’ cultural frameworks. Yet. we can successfully manage differences in our intercultural interactions if we: (1) understand our own cultural frameworks. Conflict Resolution. Yet. the implicit and explicit beliefs. and (3) see cultural differences not as obstacles. 7.Lesson 9/Culture. assumptions and rules embedded in those groups guide our everyday thinking and acting.1 Awareness of Your Own Cultural Frameworks We all belong to a variety of cultural groups. these differences can lead to misunderstanding and conflict. and Peacekeeping 182 Many of the problems that the international community faced in Somalia have been recognised. One of the major lessons to be learned from the Somali experience is that cultural understanding is an important tool in the third party’s conflict resolution tool-box. Building Cultural Awareness Skills Culture and cultural differences can have powerful effects on intercultural interactions. is understanding how personal cultural experiences have shaped our conceptions of conflict and approaches to managing and resolving conflict. we often do not think about how our cultural learning has influenced our thoughts and behaviours. The first step in becoming more culturally skilled for interacting with others effectively and dealing with conflict constructively. 7. and attempts have been made by the UN to address them. particularly our experiences with conflict. but as starting points for unique and creative problem-solving opportunities.

In your intercultural interactions you are likely to encounter many others. It is also helpful to have a basic understanding of the specific cultural groups you are working with (e. values and behaviours from that group. Consideration/Discussion: C How have these cultural groups influenced your beliefs and values about conflict? C How have these groups influenced the way you express and/or respond to conflict as a conflict party? C What culturally appropriate ways for handling/resolving conflict do they provide? C How do your own values. assumptions and styles affect your functioning as a third party in multicultural conflict situations? C How might they influence your peacekeeping role? 7. or by considering some of the cultural issues given below (which is also applicable to your own cultural groups). Somalis in Somalia. Of course. It is unlikely that we will have knowledge of all the diversity of cultures around the globe.g. Conflict Resolution. . you still learn beliefs. this list is not exhaustive.. Write down these groups. However.2 Awareness of Others’ Cultural Frameworks Many of the things we take for granted may lead to ineffective communication and increase the potential for misunderstanding and conflict. and Peacekeeping 183 Exercise: Exploring Your Cultural Frameworks Aims: C To demonstrate that individuals belong to many different cultural groups and to show that culture is not solely bound up with ethnicity. You can gain an understanding by conducting an ethnoconflict theory analysis. whether your membership in the group is voluntary or involuntary. Indonesians and East Timorese in East Timor). C To encourage the student to develop knowledge about the many groups with which he/she affiliate and how these groups have influenced his/her beliefs. The important point is to be receptive to these differences and to work with them. particularly when we know little about the people we are interacting with. Method: Think of the many groups which you have found yourself a part. not against them. values and behaviours about conflict and conflict resolution. it is important that we are aware of the dimensions of cultural differences that are relevant to communication and conflict resolution and that we are open to these differences.Lesson 9/Culture. Albanians and Serbs in Kosovo. past or present.

schedules to serve self-needs) and polychronic (involvement of people and doing multiple tasks at once. facial expressions. emphasizes flexible nature of time) 7. the third party gains some insight into the cultural meanings of the conflict parties. appointments are not taken seriously. such an investigation should consider the most basic cultural dimensions (i. people look after themselves. values or preferences do you have that may affect your participation in the process? Is there a third party in whom the parties would feel a high level of trust for cultural or linguistic reasons? . articulating the common-sense understandings of conflict (ethnoconflict theories) and the local acceptable techniques for resolving conflicts (ethnopraxes). people belong to collectives that look after each other. Conflict resolution does not separate the conflict issue from the person. Collectivistic Cultures: The group’s goals are more important than the individual’s. eye contact. the wider community is involved to assist in re-establishing group harmony. More useful.. role and responsibilities of third party. conclusion (What signifies a resolution?) Worldview < < Individualistic Cultures: The individual’s goals are more important than the group’s. content (meaning). those listed above). and Peacekeeping 184 CULTURAL ISSUES TO CONSIDER Perspectives Toward Conflict and Conflict Resolution < Orientations Toward Conflict: perception of conflict. completion of transaction is more important than sticking to pre-set schedule. Conflict Resolution. time is compartmentalized. values Non-Verbal Language: space and touch. that is. silence Use of Time: monochromic (time is sacred. however. When conducting a cultural analysis. By doing so.3 Cultural Analysis in Intercultural Conflict Resolution The first task of a third party in conflict situations is to conduct a preliminary cultural analysis. Minimally. along with a clear understanding of his/her own. conflict values. expression of conflict < < Orientations Toward Conflict Resolution: format of process. e.e.g. The third party cannot assume that all understandings are shared between them and the conflict parties. Conflict resolution is aimed at separating the conflict issue from the other party.Lesson 9/Culture. people engage in one activity at a time. body gestures. and achieving independent self needs. is to make explicit the underlying assumptions and understandings of conflict and conflict resolution held by all parties. Intercultural Communication < < < Verbal Language: form. appropriate setting Criteria for Resolution: objectives of process. the following items should be considered: Conflict Parties: Who are the parties to the conflict? Who else may have input into or be affected by decisions over the issues? Who do the parties see as individuals or groups whose interests should be represented? What do the parties’ cultures tell them about the nature of conflict and the appropriate behaviour when in conflict? Third Party: What biases. CR is part of everyday life.

an apology. indoors/outdoors)? What time framework would be appropriate (e. a chance to tell the other how they experienced the conflict.g..Lesson 9/Culture. and Peacekeeping 185 Conflict Issues: What are the issues and concerns? Are there hidden issues that relate to the history between the parties? What is the cultural common-sense of the parties regarding what to do when such issues emerge? What values and beliefs may affect the conflict situation? Process: What kind of process fits with the cultural common-sense of the parties? What do the parties want from the process (e. formal/informal. a healing ritual)? What setting would feel most comfortable for all of the parties involved (e. public/private. a chance to prove they were right. open-ended discussions. structured and scheduled meetings)? .g. Conflict Resolution..g. an agreement.. a decision. long.

211-215) Avruch. International Peacekeeping. and Peacekeeping 186 Further Reading Recommended Reading: Miall. J. Duffey.P. 61-3. (1999). Lederach. (2000).). K. DC: United States Institute of Peace Press. pp. Slim. . 3 (2): 123-140. Peacekeeping and Conflict Resolution. (1996). The Psychology of Peacekeeping. Woodhouse and O.Lesson 9/Culture. (1998). in H. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). London: Frank Cass. Conflict Resolution. CT: Praeger. “Cultural and Ethnic Issues of Conflict and Peacekeeping”. Culture & Conflict Resolution. New York: Syracuse University Press. 142-168. Preparing for Peace: Conflict Transformation Across Cultures. “The Stretcher and the Drum: Civil-Military Relations in Peace Support Operations”. Westport. Washington. (1995).). H. 199.R. Syracuse. Ramsbotham (eds. T. Langholtz (ed. P. Cambridge: Polity Press (pp. “Cultural Issues in Contemporary Peacekeeping”. Kimmel. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. In T.

UNHCR c. the prescription of universal models b. and Peacekeeping 187 LESSON 9 END-OF-LESSON QUIZ 1. Which of the following does not refer to an organisational cultural group? a. a framework for understanding the sources of conflict c. an unchanging set of traditions or customs in a group c. The prescriptive approach to conflict resolution training and intervention is based on: a. Conflict Resolution. the application of generic models of conflict resolution b. the local common sense about conflict b. legitimacy c. non-use of force b. political/ethnic groupings only 2. What principles of peacekeeping may be preserved if good relations with local communities are established? (Choose two. Ethnoconflict theory refers to: a.) a. The elicitive approach has important implications for: a. values and behaviours shared by members of a group d.Lesson 9/Culture. traditions found only in traditional. partiality . OSCE d. a stable pattern of behaviour that members of a group share b. transferring techniques or processes from one setting to another c. consent d. all of the above 4. cultural techniques and processes for resolving conflict d. Track One intervention c. the changing beliefs. the idea that the third party’s methods are best d. Culture is: a. Peace Building-from-below 5. large. Somali community 6. small-scale societies 3. military force b.

concept of time. SRSG Mohamed Sahnoun b. SG Boutros Boutros-Ghali c. 5-d. 3-d.c. 6-b.Lesson 9/Culture. Which of the following examples illustrates the lack of co-operation between the military and civilian agencies working in Somalia? a. Conflict Resolution. and Peacekeeping 188 7. understanding each other’s role 9. 8-b. oratory/poetry. use of CMOC b. US Special Envoy Robert Oakley Answer Key: 1-c. Which two actors made careful attempts to adapt their conflict management styles when dealing with the Somalis? a. there were no cultural differences between troops 8. 9-politics. 4-c. clan system. List three aspects of Somali culture that were misunderstood or ignored by the international community in its peacekeeping intervention? 10. some troops refused to do anything c. 7-a. General Aideed d. 2-a.d . Which of the following is an example of cultural differences among the various military peacekeeping contingents in Somalia? a. negotiating style. mutual negative stereotyping c. involvement of each other in planning and preparation d. 10-a. traditional means for managing conflict. different interpretations of the rules of engagement b. different attitudes towards the distribution of humanitarian aid d.

what are the cultural issues in this scenario? CHow would you handle this situation? CYou may wish to work with someone on this scenario. Consider/discuss the cultural issues that emerge in the situation. of the small local Serb population seem to be coming into the building to seek advice or information. At the first meeting. Method: Read each of the following scenarios and follow the directions given at the bottom of each case. Instead. You suspect that there may be some intimidation along the route to the building discouraging Serbs from making the journey to the service. You have recently joined the UN team in Kosovo. He tells you to go back to your job. as well as information about economic development policy in which UNMIK is engaged. As part of your duties working with UNMIK. You can only do this by seeking KFOR guidance. He does not seem interested and seems preoccupied with “more important military matters”. C To engage with problem-solving activities in different cultural contexts. CBroadly. Suspicions of Intimidation: Military-Civilian Co-operation You have a background of service working for NGOs in Africa. This work has been generally low-key and trouble free but you are aware that very few. He says he only has enough personnel to deal with incidents that have happened. and Peacekeeping 189 Exercise: Cultural Scenarios Aims: C To explore the cultural dimensions of conflict and conflict intervention. or to information about business enterprise and development opportunities. everyone – . You know that some of the Serb males in the village are currently given a military escort to their place of work in the mornings. and let him worry about security concerns. Tension Between Humanitarian Staff You are the programme director of the humanitarian relief programme in East Timor and have convened a meeting of your staff members who are from several different countries. and back home in the evenings. Conflict Resolution.Lesson 9/Culture. This will mean finding out if they are being threatened. Part of your briefing has been to ensure that information about the process is available to all in the community. You ask him to send either a police team from CIVPOL or a military unit to check out the security situation in the vicinity of your building. if any. You decide to find out if some similar arrangement might be needed to encourage Serb access to the registration process. a northern European left the room in frustration because – after two hours – there still was no discussion of the important business regarding how relief would be distributed in the area. you are based in a building that is used to give advice and information about the civil registration process. a British Army Lieutenant Colonel. You visit the Military-Civilian Co-ordination Cell and meet the commander. not with imaginary concerns about what might happen. Adopt the roles and explore how each member of the group playing the UNMIK role succeeds in getting some response from the officer.

You agree to allow all interested parties to assemble for discussion. an African observer remarked to his friend. Most of the soldiers in your contingent lack clear understanding of the situation. The political and security situation is fragile. Later you reflect on the events of the meeting. overwhelmed. and anxious by their recent arrival in East Timor– was still engaging in friendly conversation. “The Swiss are always so pushy!”. You continue with the meeting. The northern European accused you of incompetence for allowing the meeting to drift. a larger group of elders approaches you. This is not going to be an easy task for you. one day. However. However. It is then that you realise there are more than 150 delegates. They accuse you of not understanding the Somali situation. Your unit has just been sent to a city outside of Mogadishu to reconcile the community. Lives are at risk. A British representative stood up and calmly told everyone to stop being so emotional and to get on with the meeting.Lesson 9/Culture. There are several clan-based factions in the area. it seems that they represent various clans from around the city and are disappointed with your efforts. you do not wish this to happen again. You learn that they wish to take part in the negotiations. As he left the room. The elders meet regularly and the process appears to be progressing. C C C C C C What were the problems at the start? What would you have done differently if you had been better informed? How will you conduct the Peace Building activities now? How will you prepare for these activities? What cultural dimensions may need to be considered? How will you implement a reconciliation process? Further Consider/Discussion: CWhat cultural challenges have you faced in a peacekeeping operation or in any other situation? CWhat other cultural issues are likely to emerge in peacekeeping environments? CHow might you handle cultural differences in your peacekeeping role? . C C C C Why did this meeting getting out of control? What cultural factors explain this situation? How would you have continued with this meeting? How will you handle these differences at your next meeting? Is this scenario simplistic because of perceived stereotypes or are there deep-rooted cultural assumptions playing out that need to be carefully considered? A Reconciliation Initiative You are a military officer working with UNOSOM. Conflict Resolution. and Peacekeeping 190 excited. you start off by bringing together a small group of elders from both sides to meet in a neutral town north of the city.

and also those who are complicit in it. 3.International Alert.Judy El-Bushra. . . benefit from it. Code of Conduct In war-torn societies…women often keep society going. 4. in peace missions.LESSON 10 GENDER ISSUES IN PEACEKEEPING 1. or suffer from it. Women and women’s organisations are often reservoirs of important local capacities which can be used in Peace Building activities. 6. “Transforming Conflict” We explicitly recognise the particular and distinctive peacemaking roles played by women in conflict afflicted communities.UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan . support it. Introduction Gender and Conflict Management Styles Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice A Gender Analysis of Conflict The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace Building Our understanding of war and peace would be deepened if conflict analysts were willing to take as a starting point the men and women who make war. in peace processes. 2. . 5. We must ensure that women are enabled to play a full part in peace negotiations. They…are often the prime advocates of peace.

The significance of gender on the conduct of peacekeeping operations is considered.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 192 LESSON OBJECTIVES This lesson outlines the potential impact of gender on conflict behaviour and on conflict management styles. Identify the gender issues in contemporary peacekeeping. Discuss the gender critique of conflict resolution theory and practice. Consider how gender influences conflict and conflict management styles. Recognise the gendered nature of conflict and conflict intervention. Efforts to encourage increased participation by women in peacekeeping operations are outlined. After studying the material contained in this lesson. the student will be able to: – – – – – – Understand the basic concepts relating to gender and conflict resolution. Integrate gender awareness and analysis into his/her peacekeeping activities. . The theoretical basis for understanding the impact of gender on conflict is discussed and the role of local women in peacemaking and Peace Building is identified as an important dimension of peace processes. where men take predominantly military roles and women predominantly civilian roles.

it follows that conflict intervention has differential impact. however.1 According to this research. manage and mediate conflict. responsibilities. It focuses on the patterns of differences between men and women and how they experience conflict and its management. 2. decision-making).# . political and economic contexts. powersharing. Introduction The field of Conflict Resolution has traditionally ignored issues of gender in both theory and practice. expectations and stereotypes accorded to women and men (e. norms. express and handle conflict differently. because conflict affects men and women differently. This includes macroand micro-level conflict resolution activities in peacekeeping environments. GENDER Gender refers to the socially constructed roles. 1 " .. Gender may affect how individuals express.. Firstly. a culturally and historically determined context).1 Men and Women as Conflict Parties Research has examined whether men and women’s different realities lead them to interpret. varies over time. Montreal. Gender: is about women and men. and behaviours. negotiating and resolving differences. gender is important in conflict resolution because it is one variable that shapes an individual’s cultural framework – his or her values. Maxwell (1989). based on social care and J. February 28-March5. which implies that gender roles can be changed. “Male and Female Mediation Styles and Their Effectiveness”. is learned. " % #' ) * # %& ( & + / ! # # % + )( % &* # .# 2 1 / # # ! $ /# # 0 ! . 2. beliefs. A gender perspective implies analyses of social relations between women and men (girls and boys) in a given context (i.e. women have an alternative way of making sense of the world and acting within it. varies from culture to culture and within social.g. 1 ! # . Paper presented at the National Conference of Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution. understand. Secondly. Maxwell and D.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 193 1. is not biologically determined. gender can be seen to be moving onto the agenda from several directions. Increasingly. Gender and Conflict Management Styles Recent research has explored the “gender factor” and its role in disputing. in such areas as division of labour..

while women have been central to the second. bottom-up debate). through diplomacy backed by military power and. women tend to discuss issues in more depth. felt and understood across gender (and culture) should become part of the process for resolving it. these differences are influenced by a number of variables (e. task oriented and moving parties aggressively toward agreement. status. They enable men and women to understand what factors may be influencing their conflicts and how to manage them. use more rational. Men have dominated the first approach. election monitoring. linear language to talk about their conflicts. Peacekeeping is unique in that most participants are (male) military personnel. context. Research suggests that agreements mediated by women are more likely to last. those mediated by men are more likely to be broken. trying to get at the underlying problems in order to attain long-term solutions. human rights verification). male mediators’ style has been characterised as short-term.2 Men and Women as Third Parties Studies have also examined gender as it relates to the role. functioning and style of mediators and the effectiveness of the third party. Female mediators have been found to be more comprehensive in their approach – probing.g. and they help to re-frame parties’ understandings of the situation and of each other. yet they are not deployed for fighting purposes and many of their activities – particularly in contemporary peacekeeping – are similar to those practised by peace action groups (e. as such.g. the studies also demonstrate the pervasive stereotyping that accompanies such dichotomies. 3. traditionally. According to these studies. consistent with cultural stereotypes. and adopt a more competitive approach to managing conflict. Gender Balance in Peacekeeping Operations The research has had important implications for peacekeeping.e. women mediators have been perceived as less competent than men.. the top-down. even when the dispute was resolved by the women and not the men. on the other hand. Thus. Parties have also expressed greater satisfaction with the mediation process with female mediators than with males. the conclusions must be considered carefully. through citizen peacemaking efforts (i. How conflict is viewed.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 194 relationships.. and use more conciliatory or problem-solving strategies to resolve the conflict. The studies confirm the validity of examining gender differences in communication and third party intervention. However. Peace has. 2. power. women are more likely to act as informal peacemakers in their organisations and communities: they are willing to provide support for people to tell their story. sometimes working against each other: firstly. It would follow then . been sought through two different approaches. gender of other parties). secondly. Men. While these studies have concluded that there are gender differences in conflict managing behaviour. are less likely to express their feelings and more likely to talk about issues of justice and fairness. humanitarian relief. express feelings and concerns more openly. However.

3 Study by. studies have revealed that in mixed gender units male soldiers are more likely to control their sexual urges. Stiehm (1995).2 Yet. or reporting of sexual violence incidences. women the civilian roles. (This is an improvement. only 0. The critiques are concerned with the male-constructed. generic theories of conflict and conflict resolution which have excluded or downplayed such issues as power imbalances.. they were more active in volunteer work in schools. refugee camps. It may place emphasis on those attributes associated with women. There are several reasons for encouraging a higher proportion of women to serve in peacekeeping forces. In short. such as non-confrontational approaches in delicate situations. gendered in that men and women play different roles and are assigned different tasks: men predominantly play the military and police roles. This argument and the statistical data has been developed by J.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 195 that women (and civilians) are essential participants in this expanded version of peacekeeping. statistical data indicates that the role of peacekeeping has continued to be predominantly male (reflecting the traditionally male composition of national armed forces). Gender and Combat Status in Operation Restore Hope”. ability to listen and console.1% of the military peacekeepers were women. There has been a move towards balancing the gender factor in peacekeeping operations by increasing female participation in the field. “Humanitarians or Warriors?: Race. women comprised only 1. particularly during activities like weapons searches at checkpoints. 2 .3 In light of cases involving male soldiers patronizing prostitution and committing sexual violence against civilians. 4. despite the diverse activities of peacekeeping. For example. a study on US forces in Somalia concluded that men adopted a “warrior” attitude and used more force in their interactions with local communities. and willingness to understand and reconcile. “Men and Women and Peacekeeping”. Moskos (1995). and (2) whether there are advantages and disadvantages with increased female participation. which may further facilitate conflict resolution activities.) Peacekeeping missions are. Women adopted more humanitarian strategies and developed positive relations with the local communities (e. It will bring new issues to the agenda and may mobilise new constituencies towards conflict resolution action. more women may lead to increased legitimacy of a mission. therefore. The project is concerned with: (1) whether women are present in contemporary peacekeeping and if gender issues are considered. L. and food distribution centres and they were more sensitive towards local Somalis). Armed Forces & Society. Miller and C. Of the 17 missions active in 1993. 2(4): 564-9. 21 (4): 615-37.g. International Peacekeeping. Gender Critiques of Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice Gender critiques of conflict resolution theory and practice have sought to move beyond the limited application of “styles” and “sex difference” and their relation to the effectiveness of conflict management. It may help local women in a host country to feel more comfortable. however. during the period 1957-1989.7% of military personnel and less than 1% of police. The UN project on “Mainstreaming a Gender Perspective in UN Multidimensional Peacekeeping Operations” is one attempt.

interests. and peace from feminist perspectives and challenging international conflict management (involving mostly men) which reinforces the exclusionist power structures. Also. Feminist theory is critical of the assumption that the very inclusion of women will eliminate gender inequalities. Most of the externally brokered peace settlements take the form of “gendered deals”. Conflict resolution theories are largely “gender-neutral”. and religion. explicitly differential rights given to men and women in the newly established political and economic institutions. on different levels of relations (personal. each conflict is unique and a gender analysis must consider other factors. during conflict. international). coping strategies and relations of men and women through the various stages of conflict and conflict intervention. have sought to mainstream gender into post-conflict rehabilitation. security.. culture. A Gender Analysis of Conflict A gender analysis provides a framework for understanding the different needs. and the implications for their own Peace Building work. and choose more appropriate conflict resolution strategies if they develop the capacity to analyse and approach situations and problems from a gender perspective. i. Gender mainstreaming is a strategy to promote gender equality by (1) including a gender analysis in all policies.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 196 oppression. Non-government organisations have also begun to stress the gender dimension of conflict. The different stages and levels of conflict are not distinctive. social roles and the militarisation of international conflict intervention. social. It is an integral part in any design. ethnicity. and along a number of inter-related dimensions (including. psychological/physical. including nation-state. Rather the discipline is concerned with re-defining concepts of violence. national. One theoretical push has come from encounters between feminist theory and conflict/peace research. community. and post-conflict). it is also suspicious of the equation of women with such characteristics as compassion. economic. experiences. and (2) consulting women and men equally and integrating their needs and concerns in all decisionmaking processes. war. provide better assistance to the local communities. 5. projects and programmes. This has serious repercussions on peace negotiations. Several international agencies. political. empathy and co-operation – the assumption of “woman as the peaceful sex”. demographic). implementation. Peacekeeping actors can achieve greater operational effectiveness. The framework below is a brief overview of . monitoring and evaluation of conflict intervention policies and activities. development and Peace Building. human rights. including the UN. but not limited to. failing to consider the specific effects of conflict on “women” and “men” and the gendered consequences of conflict intervention. The impact of conflict on gender relations can be analysed at the different stages of conflict (pre-conflict.e. they are overlapping and inter-related.

Jacobson.. and the “Gender Analysis Series” session of the Lester B. TABLE 10-1: : Influence of Gender Issues at the Pre-Conflict Stage LEVEL OF ANALYSIS Personal Community PRE-CONFLICT FEATURE Increased physical/domestic violence Increased human rights violations Mobilisation of peace organisations POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT Women and children may be the victims of domestic violence Gender-specific violence may increase Differential impact of human rights violations on men/women Women become active in womenonly and informal peace organisations. men become active in more formal decisionmaking bodies Human rights may not be considered as women’s rights Reinforcement of stereotypes of masculinity/femininity (e.). El-Buschra (2000). to be a man is to fight for the cause) Increased commercial sex trade Lack of knowledge and awareness of gender-related issues among international personnel Increased commercial sex trade National Increased human rights violations National propaganda used to increase support for military action Increased mobilisation of soldiers International UN fact-finding missions/ preventive deployment PKOs 4 The authors wish to thank Cordula Reimann (Centre for Conflict Resolution. Jacobs. The section has also been informed by the ideas in J. pp. The conflict and gender analysis framework has been adapted from her work in progress for the German Development Co-operation Agency GTZ (December 1999) on “Gender Mainstreaming in Crisis Prevention and Conflict Management”. University of Bradford) for her knowledge of gender issues in Conflict Resolution. States of Conflict: Gender. it is not exhaustive and only considers some of the common issues which can help us to better understand the gender dimensions of conflict and conflict intervention. Pearson Peacekeeping Centre’s prototype course on Gender & Peace Support Operations (February 2000).Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 197 such an analysis. and J.4 5. “Transforming Conflict: Some Thoughts on a Gendered Understanding of Conflict Processes”. R.1 Gender Issues in the Pre-Conflict Stage It is important to understand the gender issues in the pre-conflict stage in order to (1) initiate effective crisis prevention activities and early warning systems and (2) to develop and implement gender-appropriate policies and programmes in later stages of conflict intervention. .66-86. Department of Peace Studies. Violence and Resistance. in S.g. London: Zed Books. Marchbank (eds.

which may balance power.2 Gender Issues During Conflict Across the various levels and dimensions. This may include extended opportunities for women in conflict situations. What human rights violations have been committed? Who has the violence been directed at? How have the victims been affected by it? In what ways are the violations gender-specific? What is the state or the international community doing to protect gender-specific human rights abuses? What are the respective roles of women and men in peace organisations.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 198 Several questions may be asked to determine the gender issues in the pre-conflict stage. armed conflict impacts upon women (girls) and men (boys) differently.g. and at the state-level? What are the activities of external actors (e. but it may also increase gender-specific violations of human rights. UN agencies. NGOs)? Are their activities gender-neutral? 5. both formally and informally? What strategies are men and women using to prevent conflict in the households.. . Just as women and men experience conflict in different ways. Gender roles and relations are often changed during conflict. peacekeeping activities can have differential impacts on women and men. communities. Answers may provide outside actors with early warning signals and will allow individuals and organisations to pursue appropriate conflict prevention strategies.

they suffer from increased overload and anxiety Men may be injured/handicapped from fighting. and bear children of opposing group. but it may affect them differently While men are fighting.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 199 TABLE 10-2: Influence of Gender Issues During Conflict LEVEL OF ANALYSIS Personal CONFLICT FEATURE Use of physical/sexual violence as a weapon of war POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT Men/boys experience mutilation and slaughter. experience feelings of helplessness. and experiencing direct violence . including children conceived in rape and sexually transmitted diseases Psychological and physical trauma from witnessing and participating in violence. loss of “masculinity” because of sexual mutilation Women/girls are more likely to experience sexual and reproductive health stresses. women must assume the responsibility for the survival of their families. destroy culture. women/girls experience rape and forced impregnation Rape used against women to prove masculinity. rape used against men to destroy masculinity Men and women suffer from stress.

women are increasingly burdened as providers Due to material shortages. boys are dressed as girls Men refuse to fight Women refuse to help combatants and use roles as mothers to protest . girls become couriers. gender relations are put under pressure (including increased domestic violence.g. women’s basic health needs are marginalised (e. migration of men to cities for work. cooks. women assume traditional male roles and responsibilities Intra-household power structures may change as women become primary decision-makers and carers of survivors and dependants Breakdown of rigid family structures may create different forms of self-help groups (separate women’s and men’s groups) Quality of marital relationships may change. women are beaten and sexually abused to decrease morale Increased domestic violence on women and children Children (especially boys) are encouraged to flee. but women may incite or support men to use violence.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 200 Community Changes in family and social structures Material Shortages “Cultures of violence” Resisting the conflict Women may be empowered.. or sexual providers Men targeted (beaten. in the absence of men. injured or raped girls may no longer be marriageable Due to changes in the gendered division of labour. male soldiers receive medical attention. women suffer from malnutrition because they eat less food to ensure dependants get enough) Most combatants are men. increased petty crime amongst men) With male contributions absent. tortured or killed) as revenge attacks (their blood is worth more) or because they are of fighting age. protest or actively participate in violence as fighters Female fighters are often socially excluded (including reduced economic opportunities and marriage prospects) Boys become combatants. given access to markets previously excluded from Women’s production and social reproduction roles extended. forced marriage increases.

g. national and international? Does the external intervention strategy affect men and women differently? If so. different rights given to men and women in political/economic institutions Women excluded from international peace processes Different needs and health concerns for male and female refugees Several questions should be asked to determine the gender issues during the conflict. how? What can be done to prevent or correct women’s disadvantage? 5. men involved in formal decisionmaking processes at local and national levels General lack of understanding of gender-related issues amongst international actors Delivery of aid influences gender relations Human rights abuses against men and women committed by international personnel. sexual favours in exchange for safe passage. Careful consideration of these questions may better inform the intervention activities by the international community at the macro-level and peacekeeping actors at the micro-level (on the ground). peace enforcement operations Internationally brokered peace settlements Increased flow of refugees into neighbouring states Different basic material and non-material needs for male and female refugees Women are vulnerable to economic. political and sexual exploitation (e. How is the conflict affecting men/boys and women/girls? What roles are they playing in the conflict? What gender-specific violations are being targeted at the men/boys and women/girls? What are the results of these violations? How are men/boys and women/girls responding to these violations? How are the gender roles and relations changing? How have men’s and women’s responsibilities changed? What are the needs of the men and women in the conflict situation? What strategies to resist or resolve the conflict are being employed by the men and women at the local. as women have taken on new roles . Gender relations is a crucial issue. food) Use of gender images in political mobilisation ( e.3 Gender Issues in the Post-Conflict Stage Many of the gender issues during the immediate post-conflict stage are similar to those found during the conflict. peacekeeping.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 201 National Increase in refugees and displaced people Media in support of or against military action Formal and informal peace processes International Humanitarian intervention.g. images of womanhood and motherhood used to mobilise for peace) Women involved in local informal peace organisations but excluded from formal peace processes. increase in prostitution Gendered deals...

serious injuries and death Post-settlement violence may increase POTENTIAL GENDER IMPACT Men and women have different sexual and reproductive health needs Women may give birth to children conceived during rape Domestic violence directed at women/girls may increase . political. Reconciliation and reconstruction therefore require that gender equality be addressed. TABLE 10-3: Influence of Gender Issues in the Post-Conflict Stage LEVEL OF ANALYSIS Personal POST-CONFLICT FEATURE Psychological trauma as a result of experiencing sexual violence.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 202 and responsibilities during the conflict. This includes the social. and economic marginalisation of women. Peace is difficult to sustain if the underlying causes of conflict are not addressed. including creating wider processes of representation in peace processes and developing more inclusive forms of civil society.

face discrimination in jobs. credit schemes) aimed at male ex-combatants Men ex-fighters may develop drug/alcohol addictions. women may have primary responsibility of producing food Informal women’s groups may (re)emerge to provide physical and emotional support Reintegration policies (land allocations. migration Many traditional mechanisms for conflict resolution only involve male members of the community Voices from women’s peace groups are usually ignored.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 203 Community Changes in family and social structures Demobilisation of combatants Local Peace Building activities Previous social gendered division of labour may be put back in place. despite women taking on many new roles during conflict Returning from war. women’s needs may marginalised/undermined . polygamy is seen as a means of dealing with the high numbers of widowed and younger women Demographic imbalance increases women’s workload. direct violence against wives and children Women ex-fighters may be socially excluded (reduced economic and marriage prospects). their experiences are marginalised Female ex-fighters may have to raise children without male support (due to death. divorce. lose respect in community because they violated social and gender roles. men may have difficulties in re-entering the changed family and community structures Demographic imbalance: more female-headed households may limit women’s marriage prospects.

the main victims (along with children). women frequently bear the brunt of conflict and are. economic and political institutions in the postconflict environment? If not. Yet. women may experience difficulties in participating in elections Gender issues rarely appear as election issues. even discourages.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 204 National Implementation of peace negotiations Promotion of national reconciliation Holding of national elections Re-formation of security forces International Investigations by International War Crimes Tribunal International investment and reconstruction programmes Repatriation of refugees Women are excluded from formal decision-making processes Women’s experiences are excluded or inadequately addressed (e. therefore. skills and training needs. the following questions should be asked: What are the physical.. women are rarely involved in the decisions that result in conflict and they are almost never involved in issues and processes relating to peace and security. psychological and social needs and concerns of men and women in the post-conflict stage? Are women continuing to participate in social. The Role of Local Women in Peacemaking and Peace Building Although conflict affects the entire society. nor are they a priority for the newly elected government General lack of understanding of gender-specific violence Limited or no access for women Gender-specific nature of war crimes has been recognised Programmes may not differentiate between women’s and men’s health needs.g. Despite women’s participation in local peace movements and community groups. why? How can they be assisted? Are women actively involved in conflict resolution activities? Are men being excluded from women’s projects? What strategies can be employed to ensure equal participation? How can post-conflict reconstruction and Peace Building activities ensure that the genderspecific needs are met? 6. their contributions and concerns. or credit schemes Different needs for men and women overlooked In determining appropriate post-conflict Peace Building activities and programmes. . the top-down political process imposed at the international level often ignores. as victims of sexual violence they are afraid to testify) Due to exclusion from political institutions in the pre-conflict stage.

they have been give the title of “clan ambassadors” and they had a separate women’s delegation in the national Boroma conference. to provide legal aid and psycho-social assistance. so the extent to which they could nurture peace was limited. More recently. In Somaliland. centres for the distribution of humanitarian aid. Although the international community’s intervention policies did not consult women in the Western Sahara during MINURSO – nor were they included in peace talks between POLISARIO and the Moroccan Government – they have been active at the community level. In 1999. Oxfam. the German NGO Kinderberg) have been committed to supporting the existing organisations.. water and sanitation issues. building small enterprises). Locally-based clan reconciliation conferences (unsupported by the international community). have recognised the resources of Somali women’s groups and employed women as “bridge-builders” to initiate and nurture lasting peace. In Somalia women were excluded from UN peace conferences. Yet. Women’s groups were established to improve the literacy of women and girls. Somali women have played an important role as peacemaker through inter-clan marriage. they lacked support from the international community and there was very little external funding. to defend human rights and freedoms. women’s groups in the Former Yugoslavia were desperate to address the problems raised for women of all ethnic groups from the early days of the conflict. there was only one Kosovar woman at the Rambouillet negotiations. Women have had the primary responsibility of building the refugee camps. However. sewing. and to offer a variety of training (including. however. which gave more legitimacy and power to the Somali warlords who were not accountable to the local communities.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 205 There are numerous examples from recent peacekeeping experiences in areas of conflict that clearly illustrate this dynamic. because of their dual kinship. meeting places for women. there were no women involved in the Dayton peace negotiations in November 1995. they are employed as go-betweens or intermediaries between opposing clans to make contact and open discussion. the international community has begun to recognise the important role that women’s organisations play in building peace.g. Traditionally. hairdressing. education. Despite the many local organisations representing women in Bosnia. and organised peaceful protests. seeing to health. they were visible throughout the long period of instability that began in 1989 when Serbia revoked the autonomy in Kosovo. They also have traditional networks that support each other and each other’s families (across clan boundaries). Yet. particularly during times of conflict. women have been involved in peace activities long before the war broke out. and promoting peace and reconciliation within the camps. Various UN agencies and international NGOs (e. as well as empowering women and encouraging them to initiate their . The local women’s commitment to creating social cohesion was strong: they established counselling services.

medium and long terms? When traditional forms of conflict resolution by women are supported how can these informal efforts be included in formal peace processes? For women in countries affected by war. Capacity-Building for Women5 Local women do not usually occupy positions that would enable them to fully participate in peace processes. Secondly. offering the same activities and under the direction of international staff. however. leaving many groups dependent and lacking in the necessary skills to run an NGO efficiently. some feel that the initiative is simply throwing money at Kosovo’s women with little regard for the consequences. and UNIFEM/AWIC. This has caused problems for local women as they find themselves torn between the centres. Many organisations have been formed with no other purpose than to apply for KWI money that must be spent by September 2000. support from the UN and international agencies is critical. some international NGOs have been insensitive to existing women’s organisations and have established their own centres nearby. how the obstacles to peace negotiations can be removed. national and international pre. Search for Common Ground. 5 Adapted from Training of Trainers on Gender and Conflict Transformation: Capacity-Building for Women’s Peace Movements in Burundi (Workshop Proceedings).and post-conflict decision-making processes and Peace Building/reconciliation activities. Gendered post-conflict peace deals can be avoided by: Increasing participation of women in local. what are the reasons for it? Are their cultural norms that discourage or prevent women from participating? What strategies can be developed to promote the equal participation of men and women in these decision-making bodies in the short. Local women need to be consulted to learn about the root causes of the conflict and how they are affected by the conflict. April 1997. Appropriate Peace Building programmes can be developed by exploring the questions below. What are the decision-making bodies in the conflict culture? What is the number or percentage of women in these decision-making bodies? What positions may women occupy in these decision-making bodies? If gender-based discrimination exists within these decision-making bodies. It is therefore crucial for third parties to evaluate the extent of their position in decisionmaking bodies and to formulate strategies aimed at promoting the increased participation of women in Peace Building. while the Kosovo Women’s Initiative (KWI) is a generous $10 million US-sponsored initiative to allocate to women’s groups. .Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 206 own projects to heal the wounds of war. Burundi. Firstly. Organised and facilitated by International Alert. and how traditional practices can offer a perspective on developing alternative ways of ending the conflict. Gitega. Two problems have been identified.

include local women in discussions. decision-making and programme implementation).. Linking grassroots peace initiatives led by women into the official peace negotiations led mainly by men. .g.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 207 Sensitively supporting existing women’s groups and peace organisations (e. Supporting men where they engage in Peace Building-from-below activities.

J. “Gender Bias: Women and Peace Building”. Gender and the Ethics of Intervention in Civil Wars”. and J.org/peacebook. Bonn: AFB-TEXTE. and Conflict Resolution”. London: Routledge. Afshar (ed. (1997). in H. Rodgers. L.Lesson 10/Gender Issues in Peacekeeping 208 Further Reading Key Reading: Miall. Pearce (1998). 1 (1): 103-116. Stiehm. “Bosnia. Cordula (1999). Reimann. The Field of Conflict Management: Why Does Gender Matter?.undp. and Process: Research on Gender. (1998). Comfort and Gretchen Sidhu (2000) (eds. 9 (4): 375-86. Place. J. “Voice. Ramsbotham and Woodhouse (1999). Women and Politics. Issue 4. (Read the book on-line at: www. Women and Empowerment. Contemporary Conflict Resolution. pp. (Available on-line at: www. Women at the Peace Table: Making a Difference.unifem.) On the Record: Your Electronic Link to Civil Society in Kosovo.pl?id=otrkosovo. D. “Engendering the Analysis of Conflict: A Southern Perspective”. 60-1) Lamptey.). Volume 10. . (“A Gendered Critique of Conflict Resolution”. 155-163.) Pankhurst. Mediation Quarterly. Civil Wars.html. “Peacekeeping and Peace Research: Men’s and Women’s Work”.advocacynet.).org/cgibin/browse. (1992). 18 (1): 27-51. Negotiation. Information Unit Peace Rese