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The Political Economy of Transitions to Peace

A Comparative Perspective

Galia Press-Barnathan

Publication Year: 2009

Much attention has focused on the ongoing role of economics in the prevention of armed conflict and the deterioration of relations. Galia Press-Barnathan focuses on the importance of economics in initiating and sustaining peaceful relations after conflict. Press-Barnathan provides in-depth case studies of several key relationships in the post-World War II era: Israel and Egypt; Israel and Jordan; Japan, the Philippines, and Indonesia; Japan and South Korea; Germany and France; and Germany and Poland. She creates an analytical framework through which to view each of these cases based on three factors: the domestic balance between winners and losers from transition to peace; the economic disparity between former enemies; and the impact of third parties on stimulating new cooperative economic initiatives. Her approach provides both a regional and cross-regional comparative analysis of the degree of success in maintaining and advancing peace, of the challenges faced by many nations in negotiating peace after conflict, and of the unique role of economic factors in this highly political process. Press-Barnathan employs both liberal and realist theory to examine the motivations of these states and the societies they represent. She also weighs their power relations to see how these factor into economic interdependence and the peace process. She reveals the predominant role of the state and big business in the initial transition phase (“cold” peace), but also identifies an equally vital need for a subsequent broader societal coalition in the second, normalizing phase (“warm” peace). Both levels of engagement, Press-Barnathan argues, are essential to a durable peace. Finally, she points to the complex role that third parties can play in these transitions, and the limited long-term impact of direct economic side-payments to the parties.

Published by: University of Pittsburgh Press

Series: The Security Continuum: Global Politics in the Modern Age


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Title Page, Copyright

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p. v

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pp. vii-viii

My six-year-old son Ido is a very inquisitive boy. Recently, he became obsessed with studying the map of the world. Every morning he would wake me up with curious questions: “Are we ‘in peace’ with Egypt?” “Are we ‘in peace’ with France?” “Are we ‘in peace’ with Japan?” “Are we ‘in peace’ with Australia?” “Are we ‘in peace’ with Lebanon?” and so on.1 After a week of early reveilles...

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1. Beyond Commercial Liberalism: Conceptualizing the Political Economy of Transitions to Peace

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pp. 1-32

Since the end of the cold war, there has been growing interest in the links between economics and security. The literature dealing with these links has focused on three issues: the links between economic interdependence and conflict, economic statecraft (most notably the use of economic sanctions), and the broadening of the concept of security to include economic and social factors.1 Much...

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2. Shifting Priorities: Egypt and Israel’s Attempts at Peacemaking

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pp. 33-56

The signing of a peace treaty by Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian president Anwar Sadat on March 26, 1979, was truly a historic moment. After thirty years during which the Arab world refused to accept the legitimate right of the state of Israel to exist and after three bloody wars, Egypt was the first Arab state to acknowledge Israel and sign a peace treaty with it. On...

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3. The Limits of Peacemaking from Above: Jordan and Israel’s Stalled Peace Process

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pp. 57-81

While the peace treaty between Jordan and Israel was signed only in October 1994, fifteen years after the treaty between Egypt and Israel, many felt that it had greater potential for generating a “warm peace.” Indeed, the history of relations between Jordan and Israel has included both enduring conflict and tacit strategic cooperation. Jordan fought against the new state of Israel in 1948...

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4. Postwar Relations in Southeast Asia: Japan, the Philippines, and Indonesia

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pp. 82-106

In a marked contrast to the two Middle Eastern cases presented in chapters 2 and 3, the transition to peace between Japan and the countries of Southeast Asia has been primarily a success story. Many international relations scholars tend to talk about Southeast Asia as a whole, especially since the successful development of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). This chapter...

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5. Government and Big Business: Normalizing Relations between Japan and South Korea

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pp. 107-132

Unlike the occupation of the Philippines and Indonesia, which lasted only three years, Japan’s occupation of Korea lasted from 1910 until 1945. It took twenty more years for a normalization treaty to be signed, in 1965. Even then, the treaty triggered massive domestic opposition in the Republic of Korea (hereafter ROK or South Korea). Economic relations between the two countries, however...

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6. The “Classic” Case in Perspective: France and Germany from War to Union

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pp. 133-159

Much of the theoretical literature on the logic of commercial liberalism, especially its early roots, either builds upon or is inspired by the Franco- German transition to peace after the end of World War II. One of the goals of this book was to move away from the Eurocentric bias of that literature by examining the role of economic factors in transitions to peace in other regions of...

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7. From Enemies to Partners: The Polish-German Transition to Peace

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pp. 160-183

The transformation of German-Polish relations since the end of World War II has been dramatic. Relations between these two countries have a history of bitterness dating back to the late eighteenth century, when Germans ruled over Poles. German rule may have brought technological progress, but it also crushed Polish insurrections and tried to “Germanize” Polish children.1 The...

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8. Politics, Economics, and Peace: Setting Realistic Expectations

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pp. 184-202

In the ongoing debate between proponents of commercial liberalism and realism over the role of economic logic in making peace with erstwhile enemies, we are likely to find instances that support either one of these approaches. There will be some cases in which economic factors are used to promote transitions to peace but are based on a political rather than liberal-economic logic as...


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pp. 203-234


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pp. 235-251


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pp. 253-257

E-ISBN-13: 9780822973584
E-ISBN-10: 0822973588
Print-ISBN-13: 9780822960270
Print-ISBN-10: 0822960273

Page Count: 272
Publication Year: 2009

Series Title: The Security Continuum: Global Politics in the Modern Age
Series Editor Byline: A series published in association with the Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies and the Ford Institute for Human Security See more Books in this Series

OCLC Number: 794702164
MUSE Marc Record: Download for The Political Economy of Transitions to Peace

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Peace-building.
  • Peaceful change (International relations).
  • Conflict management.
  • Peace-building -- Case studies.
  • Peaceful change (International relations) -- Case studies.
  • Conflict management -- Case studies.
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