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Peacebuilding as counterinsurgency in the occupied Palestinian territory

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 April 2014


It is often suggested that Western peacebuilding in the occupied Palestinian territory has failed because it has not delivered a viable Palestinian state. But if peacebuilding is reinterpreted as a form of counterinsurgency whose goal is to secure a population, then it has not failed – in fact, on the contrary, it has been quite successful. This article therefore critically evaluates the idea and practice of peacebuilding as counterinsurgency by exploring the symbiosis in the philosophy and methods of COIN and peacebuilding, and charts its implementation in the oPt through the realms of governance, development, and security. It argues that peacebuilding in this context operates as another layer of pacification techniques whose goal is to secure the Palestinian population and ensure acquiescence in the face of violent dispossession.

Copyright © British International Studies Association 2014 

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