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How Has Realism Theory Played A Key Role In Israeli And Palestinian Relations

2657 words - 11 pages


For many centuries, Judaic and Arabian societies have engaged in one of the most complicated and lengthy conflicts known to mankind, the makings of a highly difficult peace process. Unfortunately for all the world’s peacemakers the Arab-Israeli conflict, particularly the war between Israel and the Palestinian Territories, is rooted in far more then ethnic tensions. Instead of drawing attention towards high-ranking officials of the Israeli government and Hamas, focus needs to be diverted towards the more suspect and subtle international relations theory of realism which, has imposed more problems than solutions.
Throughout the course of this paper, I seek to explore the use of realism theory to both explain and account for the Arab-Israeli conflict. More precisely, how has realism theory played a key role in Israeli and Palestinian relations, and will it impact future diplomatic efforts? The viewpoints and stances of various nations, religious organizations, and geopolitical alliances will be examined in an effort to better understand the past, present, and future of Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Contemporary realism theory will also be examined for the sake of giving the noted international relations theory wider parameters and new boundaries. It is no surprise that the global community has had a significant impact on the region, yet the next step is to link such to the international relations theory.
This examination of realism theory is based on evidence of which the global community has already presented. First, ethnic tensions spiraling into conflict are nothing new and prior conflicts do frequent history textbooks. However, Israel and Palestine cannot simply be compared to the Hutu and Tutsi groups in Rwanda, the Chinese and Tibetans, the Chechnyans and Russians, or even the Bosnian Muslims and the Serbians. The difference between Israel and Palestine and the other conflicts is not embedded in ethnicity, but rather in the geographical and religious aspect that elevates the status of the region surrounding Jerusalem. This is in addition to deposits of fossil fuels found throughout the Middle East.
Realist Theory
The international relations theory of realism is a theory largely based off of four key propositions. The first proposition proclaims that all states act under no centralized authority and will only relate with other states on their own terms and by their own will. This is essentially to say that the international system is anarchic and that no authority, not even the United Nations, can direct a sovereign states actions. The second proposition is that states are the most powerful and supreme actors within international relations, meaning no organization or coalition can trump the power that a state may lay claim to. The third proposition recognizes that all states are both rational and unitary actors. Essentially speaking, all states are sovereign and will tend to act in their own...

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