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Guest Writers

A few issues facing EU states in their policy towards the Arab-Israeli conflict

Dr Federica BicchiThe Europeans have been forging an increasingly specific policy towards the Arab-Israeli conflict, centred on the Green (1949 Armistice) Line as the provisional border between Israel and Palestine. While this is a clever strategy, several important aspects will come to the fore in the near future and will need to be addressed for it to be fully effective in an increasingly difficult international environment.

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Peace should be enforced before negotiated: It's time for a paradigm shift in EU policies towards the Israel-Palestine conflict

Dr Dimitris BourisOver the past few decades, the European Union has been instrumental in setting up the parameters upon which the so-called Middle East Peace Process was funded and in "feeding" the international community with ideas on what would constitute a fair solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict.1

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Fundamental rifts: power, wealth and inequality in the Arab world

Dr Adam HaniehOver four years since mass uprisings ousted sclerotic regimes in Tunisia and Egypt it can seem that the initial hopes represented by these movements lie in tatters. Libya, Syria, Yemen and Iraq remain mired in bloody armed conflicts that have led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands and displaced millions more within and across borders. In the pivotal case of Egypt, military rule has returned through the violent crushing of protests, the arrests of an estimated 40,000 people and the rebuilding of the repressive structures of the Mubarak era. Elsewhere, autocratic governments look more secure in their rule today than they have for many years.

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Turkey and the development of democracy in the Middle East

Yasar YakisThe evolution of democracy in the Middle East in its contemporary sense has gone through various stages. The first was the Ottoman period. With the exception of Iran and Morocco, almost all Middle Eastern countries were part of the Ottoman State for centuries. It is reasonable to say, therefore, that both democracy and the absence thereof must have been at comparable levels across the region for centuries, though some areas may have experienced better democracy than others.

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Palestine and the British trade unions

Stephen BellMEMO's important book "The Battle for Public Opinion in Europe" analysed changing perspectives in Europe towards the Palestinian struggle. A look at the trade unions in Britain reveals that a similar process is underway. Given that these bodies are the largest social movement in the country, with approximately 7 million members, the change is not unimportant.

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