Five years ago it was easy to be cautiously optimistic about Israeli-Palestinian peace. The 1993 Declaration of Principles signed by Israel's Labor party government and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) was a largely unanticipated breakthrough that envisioned a "comprehensive peace settlement and historic reconciliation." The surge of hopefulness generated by this agreement has, for many in the region and for many interested observers, given way to a painful sense of disappointment.
By contrast, pessimistic scenarios have not materialized in South Africa. Political violence escalated after the National party (NP) government and the African National Congress (ANC) began direct official negotiations in 1990; however, after the election of an ANC-led unity government in 1994, such violence became localized and non-normative. Despite considerable challenges of poverty and the destructive legacies of more than 300 years of racial domination, few would argue that hopes for political normalization in South Africa have diminished - a not uncommonly heard assessment of post-agreement Israeli Palestinian relations.
Comparison with South Africa may help explain how the processes that produced the Israel-PLO accord are linked with the difficulties that soured the optimism of 1993. This article notes parallels in the paths to negotiated agreements in the two cases, and then considers why those paths diverged in the post-agreement period.
Five political and perceptual shifts led to direct negotiation and mutual recognition between the main adversaries in South Africa and Israel-Palestine.
Shift 1: Each side's leaders doubted that military coercion could achieve conflict goals. Fundamentally, the main adversaries in each conflict negotiated because they acknowledged that the other was a permanent presence on the land who could not be forced to abandon its national goals. Neither Africans nor Afrikaners could push the other out of South Africa because, broadly speaking, both groups felt deeply rooted there and neither had anywhere else to go. Similarly, Palestinian Arabs who worked in Israeli cities, and watched Israel expand into territories conquered in the 1967 war, began to abandon the view of Israel as an impermanent figment of European colonialism. For their part, many Israelis were forced by the intifada or popular uprising of the late 1980s to recognize the persistence of Palestinian national feeling and commitment to retaining the land.
Neither the PLO nor the ANC could count on military support from state allies. Possibilities for military coercion of Israel faded with the Arab-Israeli wars of 1967 and 1973, the PLO's expulsion from Jordan in 1970, Israeli-Egyptian peace in 1979, the PLO's expulsion from Lebanon in 1982, and the Iran-Iraq War of 1980- 1988.1 The 1991 Gulf War dramatized both the decline of Arab nationalism and the decline of Soviet Power.
The ANC largely avoided pernicious entanglement with the politics of sanctuary-providing states. However, the ANC's military options also diminished as South Africa forced neighboring states to withdraw aid and sanctuary. The agreement in late 1988 that led to Namibia's independence required ANC forces to relocate from bases in Angola to Uganda and Tanzania, roughly as far from South Africa as PLO forces in Tunis were from Palestine.
Shift 2: Each side assessed that the status quo was untenable. Despite the ANC and PLO's military ineffectiveness, mass uprisings against the government side's forces of occupation in South Africa's townships in the mid-1980s, and among Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank during the intifada, convinced South African and Israeli government leaders to pursue solutions at the political level. By the late 1980s, South Africa's economy was stagnant, its fast-growing African population posing insoluble social and economic problems, and its security forces barely able to control organized protests despite massive and violent repression. Escalating conflict prompted Nelson Mandela to push for negotiation before the country the ANC sought to inherit was destroyed.2 Government officials eventually responded out of conviction that the longer they put off negotiations, the worse their bargaining position would be.3
By late 1992, Israeli leaders also believed that time was working against them - not primarily because of the PLO's strength, but because of its post-Gulf War weakness. The most pressing threat for Israel was that the PLO would be eclipsed by the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas). The threat from Palestinian Islamists was linked with the threat from Iran which, Israeli leaders believed, could possess the means to attack Israel with weapons of mass destruction by the late 1990s.4 Like the ANC, the PLO was threatened by the prospect of losing control over resistance movements inside the country, although the challenges to the PLO's authority were more concerted than those facing the ANC.5
The centrality of conflict policy during the 1992 electoral campaign prompted Yitzhak Rabin to promise to negotiate a settlement within six to nine months of taking office.6 Failure to fulfill this pledge would have discredited Rabin and his Labor party and yielded the pro-negotiation mantle to Meretz, Labor's coalition partner and rival on the left. Polarization of the electorate, and increasing overall support for territorial compromise, allowed Rabin to contravene the Labor party's 1992 party platform by pursuing negotiations with the PLO, with some assurance that his constituents would not defect to Likud, Labor's principal rival on the right.7 In South Africa, de Klerk faced the similar problem that refusal to negotiate would have merely endorsed the position of the Conservative party (CP) to the NP's right, and steered pro-negotiation whites to the Democratic party (DP) on the left. In both cases, then, the domestic political incentives for achieving a negotiated settlement made the government see the status quo as too costly. In meetings with Rabin, Foreign Minister Shimon Peres reportedly stressed that "the survival of the Rabin government hinged on a breakthrough on peace [and] that Labor would not have a chance for reelection during their political lifetimes."8
Shift 3: Each side perceived that direct negotiation with the adversary might lead to an acceptable outcome. Perceptions of negotiation possibility were enhanced on the government side by various processes, including the "demonstration effects" of negotiated settlements in overlapping conflicts.
Peace with Egypt convinced many Israelis that, in the phrase of the country's peace movement, there was someone to talk with and something to talk about. To a somewhat lesser degree, South Africa's negotiated settlement of its conflicts in Namibia and Angola had a similarly salutary effect on government decision makers.9
In addition, unilateral declarations by opposition groups, particularly the PLO's following the 1988 meeting of the Palestine National Council, and the ANC's 1989 Harare declaration, indicated to government decision makers that the adversary's goals were no longer maximal.10 Unofficial meetings also enhanced perceptions of negotiation possibility on both sides. Contacts between influential South African whites and ANC leaders, and between members of Israeli political elites and PLO officials, allowed leaders to explore terms for agreement at reduced political risk and fostered a critical degree of trust and constructive communication.11
Shift 4: Leadership change on the government side brought pragmatists to power. The government side in each case underwent a change of leadership, with pragmatists F. W. de Klerk and Yitzhak Rabin replacing ideologues P. W. Botha and Yitzhak Shamir in 1989 and 1992 respectively. Within a year of taking office, each leader reversed long-standing government policies toward opposition groups and began official-level talks.
Shift 5: Government leaders recognized that the primary nationalist adversary could not be circumvented by means of alternative negotiating partners. De Klerk and Rabin acknowledged the failure of concerted government efforts to promote alternative negotiation partners, such as Chief Buthelezi or other local African leaders instead of the ANC, and either Jordan, Syria, or ostensibly non-PLO Palestinians instead of the PLO.
These parallel shifts should be seen against the background of fundamental structural differences between the two conflicts. These are reflected in the nearly antithetical thrusts of the negotiation processes: While talks in South Africa were directed toward political pluralism within one state, in Israel/Palestine the question after 1967 has become two nations' political and territorial separation. The centrality of territorial division gives the Israeli-Palestinian conflict more of a zero-sum character, since sovereignty is less easily shared than is political power.
The shifts that led to direct negotiation in each case reflected three broad factors - power and interdependence, internal politics, and mutual perceptions - that also help account for post-agreement developments.
As the contrast with South Africa makes clear, the unilateral approaches taken in Israel/Palestine after 1993 continue to be shaped by imbalances of power and interdependence. The initial agreements to negotiate in both cases. reflected changes in adversaries' relative power, largely due to the repercussions of popular uprisings at the local levels, and to the waning of the Cold War (shifts 1 and 2 above). However, the opposing sides in South Africa were more closely balanced in terms of power than were Israel and the PLO.
In South Africa, the government's military advantages were offset by the support that the ANC-led opposition enjoyed from a majority within the country and from international opinion. Economic interdependence among South Africa's communities also favored a negotiated compromise. With industrialization, Africans could increasingly exercise power in the white owned economy through organized labor actions, consumer boycotts, and discouragement of international investment. On the other hand, the ANC refrained from the exclusive African nationalism of its rival, the Pan Africanist Congress, in part because ANC leaders believed that Africans gained more from the continued participation of whites and other non-Africans in the economy than they would if those groups left the country. The constraints on confrontation from economic interdependence were reinforced by multiple ideological influences on ANC leaders, including Christian reconciliation, Communist nonracialism, Gandhian non-violence and chartist constitutionalism.12
Israelis and Palestinians have far less of a sense of interdependence. Nor, for the most part, do their ideological traditions promote reconciliation. By the 1990s large-scale immigration of Jews from the former Soviet Union and lifting of restrictions on foreign workers from Eastern Europe and Asia made Palestinian labor less important for Israel. While Israelis' sense of dependence on Palestinians rarely extends beyond the realm of security, Palestinians depend on Israel not only for their primary goal of statehood, but also for economic well being and development. The Gaza Strip, in particular, has been almost completely dependent on Israel for income generation.13 This imbalance of interdependence promotes Israel's use of military and economic coercion, and policies that deepen rather than alleviate Palestinian dependence on Israel, as a means of achieving security, and also creates incentives for leaders to use the threat of violence for lack of other leverage.
Like the ANC, the PLO had sufficient authority and legitimacy to frustrate Israeli efforts to bypass it via alternative negotiating partners (shift 5). However, loss of Arab patronage after the 1991 Gulf War left the PLO diplomatically isolated and financially insecure.14 The fiscal crisis and the rise of Hamas prompted PLO leaders to recognize Israel without any guarantees regarding borders, water, and other issues critical for building a viable independent state. The bottom-line needs for PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat were a territorial base in Palestine and the return of Palestinian military forces in something approximating triumph. These minimal requirements could be met since they coincided with the Rabin administration's interest in withdrawing Israeli troops from heavily populated areas of Gaza and the West Bank and replacing them with a non-Israeli police force that could control the anti-Israeli activity of Palestinian militants.
Militant members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad posed a threat to both the secular PLO and to Israel. This shared threat motivated Israel's recognition of the PLO and the PLO's acceptance of an agreement whose terms were virtually dictated by Israel.15 While superordinate threats form an effective basis for short term cooperation, they provide a much shallower foundation for stable peace than do economic ties, such as those among South Africa's communities.
Those who negotiated the Israel-PLO accord were convinced that heavily skewed interdependence provided fuel for militant rejectionists. Two annexes of the document envisioned joint ventures in the service of regional development. However, these annexes followed provisions concerning internal Palestinian politics and security arrangements. Regrettably, the sequencing has proven apt: Internal political divisions and security concerns have stifled the anticipated economic benefits.
Domestic divisions over conflict policy promoted critical changes of leadership in South Africa and Israel (shift 4). However, the degree of polarization differed within the Israeli and South African governments and among their constituents. Despite eroding support for the NP, de Klerk, by including the DP's supporters, could credibly claim that his policies were backed by about two thirds of white South Africans. He also retained unanimous support from his cabinet for negotiation with the ANC. Rabin, on the other hand, could barely muster a majority of the Jewish members of parliament to ratify the 1993 Oslo accords. Deep divisions among Israelis may explain Rabin's disinclination to actively promote public support for the agreement following its ratification, so that virtually all of the political activism witnessed in Israel in the months after the signing was organized by settlers and right-wing rejectionists. And although Rabin undertook to freeze construction of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip (with a significant exemption for projects already underway), he took no action against existing settlements, such as Jewish homes in Hebron, that were the major source of anti-government protests and the focus of ongoing violent conflict with Palestinians.16
Rabin's reticence probably stemmed from unwillingness to risk the schismatic effects of militarily confronting well armed Israeli settlers and repeating, on a much greater scale, the traumatic forcible evacuation of settlers in the Sinai Desert pursuant to the 1978 Camp David accords. 17 Previous governments, including the one that Rabin himself had headed from 1974 to 1977, had also promoted settlements and Rabin may have hesitated to renege on prior commitments. Rabin's unwillingness to cultivate public support for the Israeli-PLO accord until the massive rally at which he was assassinated in late 1995 suggests that he was conserving his political capital for a fight to ratify a potential agreement with Syria concerning the Golan Heights.
The PLO, which also faced a challenge from rejectionists, also failed to promote public support for the accords. Divisions within the PLO Executive Committee over ratification, along with strong opposition from Palestinian Islamists, made Arafat hesitate to appear overly conciliatory toward Israel.18 Each leader was deterred by internal opposition parties from defending the major concessions the agreement implied, notably Israelis' concession of land and Palestinians' acceptance of the permanent loss of the land that became Israel in 1948. PLO leaders also failed to emphasize that whatever areas of the occupied territories Israel did cede to Palestinians would be ceded gradually. For their part, Israeli leaders failed to emphasize that the accord would lead to a Palestinian state, and that this solution, whose benefits would not be immediately felt, was nonetheless important for Israel's security. In a sense, the contest on each side is between those who believe the adversary can be ignored or made to disappear, and those who believe in the other group's permanence and in the necessity of cooperation.
The rewards of negotiated settlements are often less immediately apparent than the costs. Elite agreements will be attacked by those who feel that they have the most to lose from them, such as the settler lobby in Israel or the apartheid bureaucracy and security forces in South Africa. In South Africa acquiescence from these constituencies was purchased through job guarantees, amnesties, and an interim period of coalition government. A government buy-out of settler property that might have accomplished the same thing in Israel was not attempted.
Leadership change from Likud to Labor in 1992 made the Israeli-PLO accords possible. But having changed once, leadership changed again so as to impede implementation. Rabin's assassin did not by himself end the peace process. However, Rabin's successor, Shimon Peres, made two tactical decisions, both primarily influenced by domestic politics, that effectively stalled the negotiation process that Peres had helped initiate.
First Peres quashed a working document, negotiated by his deputy and Arafat's deputy, that could have resolved, essentially on Israeli terms, most of the contentious issues that had been relegated to final-status talks.19 Peres presumably considered the timing wrong in terms of the upcoming 1996 elections. In retrospect this seems to have been another missed opportunity for assertive leadership, particularly given the Israeli right wing's defensiveness following Rabin's assassination. Peres' s caution should probably be considered in the context of severe polarization in Israel over policies related to territorial compromise.
On the other hand, Peres's decision in early 1996 to approve the assassination of Hamas commander Yihye Ayyash seems reckless. While presumably a morale boost for Israel's security services, which had been damaged by Rabin's assassination, and also helpful in combating Peres's image as overly dovish, the killing spurred Hamas to carry out a series of retaliatory bombings. Each deadly explosion undercut support for Peres and the peace process, so that the Ayyash assassination decision was likely responsible for Peres's slim electoral loss that May.20
The beneficiary of these decisions was Benjamin Netanyahu, whose intellectual heritage of Revisionist Zionism with its ideology of territorial expansion in a Greater Israel, also included "a keen notion of Us versus Them, a sense that...Jewish history is in perpetual danger of ending completely." Unlike Rabin, Netanyahu believed that Jews continued to be a nation apart, and claimed that their history was "unlike any other people's because they lacked the elements of national survival."21 Whereas in South Africa, the swart gevaar and rooi gevaar - the black and red (Communist) threats to national survival - are fading from the political lexicon of mainstream Afrikanerdom, the nature of the Arab threat, and its implications for possible compromise, continues to dominate political discourse in Israel. In a televised debate in 1997 between former prime ministers Peres and Shamir, for example, Shamir rebutted Peres's call for a Palestinian state by claiming that it would pose "an existential threat to us...They want to destroy us!"22 The PLO could use its Islamist rivals as a source of leverage during bargaining with the Labor party.
Likud's leaders, on the other hand, did not readily differentiate between rival Palestinian groups, or, indeed, between Palestinians and other Arabs. For many on the Israeli right the PLO was not a preferred alternative but part of a monolithic Arab threat. Throughout his tenure, Netanyahu has continued the pattern established by his Likud predecessors, such as Yitzhak Shamir, of entering negotiations only when pressed hard by the United States, and then dragging out talks and delaying implementation while continuing to expropriate land and expand settlement in the Occupied Territories. Netanyahu 's government had little incentive to implement the Oslo framework and subsequent agreements, not only because Likud leaders saw the conflict in relatively simple terms of Arab aggressors and Israeli defenders, but also because implementation seemed certain to alienate the religious parties and militant nationalists in the governing coalition. Indeed, Netanyahu's domestic position became untenable after his signed of the 1998 Wye agreement caused him to lose the support of far-right Knesset members, prompting him to call early elections.
Powerful perceptions of existential threat from a unified opponent who is primarily responsive to force imply no basis for cooperation. Labor party leaders were more familiar with the adversary's perspective, including its internal political constraints, due to informal meetings that took place between Israeli and PLO officials (shift 3).
Rapport developed during such meetings helped sustain negotiations when talks threatened to break down. With the change to a Likud government, Israelis who had built communication skills with PLO officials lost political power. Each side de-emphasized direct communication in favor of appeals to domestic constituencies and third-party states. Again, South Africa differed in that the governing National party remained in power and supported de Klerk during the implementation period. Moreover, neither the government nor the ANC sought intercession by third parties since each believed that outsiders' agendas would subsume their own.
Long histories of mutual mistrust made graduality a key feature of both agreements. As an Israeli negotiator of the Declaration of Principles explained, "We withdraw, and what we get in exchange for territory is promises. But what happens if we are left with unfulfilled promises? We want to test it through phases."23 Phased agreements brought a significant measure of stability in Israel's conflicts with Egypt and Syria after the 1973 war. The phased structure of the Israeli-PLO Declaration of Principles was similarly intended to build confidence during an interim period, after which the most contentious issues would presumably be more tractable.
Unlike Israel's previous agreements, however, this one was with a non-state actor. Given the power imbalance with the PLO, graduality allowed Israel to unilaterally "create facts" through settlement building and land expropriations that altered the status of critical agenda items slated for final-status talks, such as Jerusalem and final borders.24 Absent prior specification of an acceptable range of outcomes or an obligatory mechanism for dispute resolution, power imbalances enable the stronger party to preempt phased agreements or prejudice their outcomes.
Postponement of the most contentious issues also permitted each side's leaders to encourage their constituents to believe that conflict goals - security for Israelis and statehood for Palestinians - could be achieved without cost. Pronouncements intended for domestic audiences were seized upon by the other side's rejectionists as confirmation that enemy goals remained maximal. Likud leaders, for example, could point to Arafat's call in 1994 for a jihad to liberate Jerusalem as evidence that Rabin was a traitor for negotiating. This sentiment was illustrated by drawings of Rabin in Arab costume that were posted around Jerusalem not long after the agreements were signed.
Such images might be contrasted with Nelson Mandela's politically successful gesture of donning the uniform of the Springboks rugby team, a national symbol for Afrikaners. This and other conciliatory gestures, such as Mandela's visits to the widows of apartheid-era prime ministers, were enabled by the ANC's inclusive nationalist ideology and by perceptions of interdependence between communities. Conciliatory gestures tended to reduce Afrikaners' perceptions of threats to their national existence and raised the possibility that opposing national movements could reformulate a shared identity as South Africans.
Like Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat in 1978, Rabin and Arafat won international acclaim for their 1993 agreement and were similarly reviled and attacked by Jewish and Arab extremists. De Klerk and Mandela enjoyed greater initial support from their respective national constituencies. ANC unity, in particular, allowed Mandela to craft his public statements so as to reinforce de Klerk's stature among white South Africans, even at the risk of alienating ANC supporters.25 Consideration of the adversary's domestic political constraints has been less evident among Israelis and Palestinians, except perhaps with regard to the threat from Hamas.
Protracted intergroup conflicts with entangled issues of security, material resources, identity, and political power are rarely solved or settled for all time. The conflict in South Africa has been transformed so that it continues to evolve primarily through non-violent political and social processes. That the Israeli Palestinian conflict has not been transformed to the same degree is a function of imbalances of power and interdependence, internal divisions that make leaders on each side unwilling to actively promote coexistence and reconciliation, and abiding existential fears.
1 Political implications of the PLO's loss of bases in Jordan and Lebanon arc explored in Emile Sahliyeh, The PLO After the Lebanon War (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1986) and Rex Brynen, Sanctuary and Survival: The PLO in Lebanon (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1990).
2 Mandela recalled fearing in the mid-1980s that "If we did not start a dialogue soon, both sides would be plunged into a dark night of oppression, violence and war." Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela (Boston: Little, Brown, 1994), p. 457.
3 Niel Barnard, director of South Africa's National Intelligence Service, noted that "There was a very deep feeling from 1986 to 1989, that 'We can still continue - but for how long?' Would it be five years, ten years, fifteen years? Would we [then] be in a situation of being conquered - not by way of a military takeover, but by way of the country just disintegrating? To negotiate in such a climate would be much more difficult than to negotiate in a situation of relative capacity economically, security-wise and so forth." Author's interview, Cape Town, October 1994.
4 In a December 1992 speech at the International Center for Peace in the Middle East, Rabin estimated that Israel had a seven-year window to respond to the Iranian threat. David Makovsky, Making Peace with the PLO: The Rabin Government's Road to the Oslo Accords (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1996), p. 112. On government leaders' views of Iran and political Islam, sec Yorarn Peri, "Afterword" in Yitzhak Rabin, The Rabin Memoirs, 2nd ed. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996). p. 365, and Shimon Peres, The New Middle East (New York, Henry Holt, 1993), p. 18.
5 See, e.g., Beverley Milton-Edwards, Islamic Politics in Palestine (London: I. B. Tauris, 1996), pp. 155-156, and Yezid Sayigh, Armed Struggle and the Search for State: The Palestinian National Movement, 1949-1993 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997), pp. 651-652.
6 Yorarn Peri, "Afterword" in The Rabin Memoirs, p. 357. While the campaign commitment should not be exaggerated as a source of pressure after Labor's narrow victory in June, aides report that Rabin spoke often of the need to deliver on the promise. Makovsky, Making Peace with the PLO. p. 137.
7 Directional voting theory suggests that polarization of the electorate affords leaders latitude for policy innovation. George Rabinowitz and Stuart MacDonald, "A Directional Theory of Issue Voting," American Political Science Review 83:1989, pp. 93-121, and discussion in Asher Arian, Security Threatened: Surveying Israeli Opinion on War and Peace (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996).
8 Makovsky, Making Peace with the PLO, p. 96.
9 According to Niel Barnard, who participated in both contexts, negotiation experience in Namibia and Angola "created a climate" that facilitated negotiations with the ANC. Author's interview, Pretoria, October 1994.
10 The Harare Declaration, issued under the auspices of the Organization of African Unity, stated that "a conjuncture of circumstances exists which, if there is a demonstrable readiness on the part of the Pretoria regime to engage in negotiations genuinely and seriously, could create the possibility to end apartheid through negotiations." Reprinted in Cooper et al., Race Relations Survey 1989/1990 (Johannesburg: South African Institute of Race Relations, 1990), pp. 641-644.
11 On Israeli-Palestinian contacts, see Peter Demant, "Unofficial Contacts and Peacemaking: Israeli Palestinian Dialogue, 1967-1993," in Frederick Lazin and Gregory Mahler, eds., Israel in the Nineties: Development and Conflict (Gainsville: University Press of Florida, 1997). On pre-negotiation contacts in South Africa, sec Timothy Sisk, Democratization in South Africa: The Elusive Social Contract (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1995), pp. 77-78.
12 The ANC can be counted among the rare national liberation movements whose highest leaders - Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo and Joe Slovo - were practicing lawyers.
13 Sara Roy, The Gaza Strip: The Political Economy of De-development (Washington, D.C.: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1995), p. 316.
14 Sayigh, Armed Struggle, pp. 656-657.
15 Author's interview with adviser to Yitzhak Rabin, Jerusalem, June 1994.
16 From the perspective of one close observer, "almost certainly the most important factor contributing to the halting of the peace process" was the massacre of Muslims at prayer during Ramadan by a Jewish settler of American origin in Hebron in early 1994. The first suicide bombings by Palestinians followed this killing, and these, in tum, induced Israeli agents to assassinate Hamas and Islamic Jihad activists. After further revenge bombings, Israel tightened its closures of the West Bank and Gaza, undermining the Palestinian economy and support for the peace process. Danny Rubenstein, "The Massacre that Halted Peace," Ha'aretz (English edition), February 23, 1998. On closures, see Sara Roy, "The Palestinian Economy after Oslo," Current History, January 1998, pp. 19-25.
17 The political repercussions of this confrontation arc discussed in Ehud Sprinzak, The Ascendance of Israel's Radical Right (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991).
18 If walkouts, boycotts and abstentions arc counted as votes against ratification, the PLO Executive Committee appears to have split 10-8 in favor of the accords. Barry Rubin, Revolution Until Victory?: The Politics and History of the PLO(Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1994), p. 245, n. 43.
19 Reports on the Yossi Beilin-Abu Mazen understandings appear in Journal of Palestine Studies 26:1, Autumn 1996, pp. 148-152.
20 Earlier this year Peres told reporters that "I believe we lost it basically because of the attacks by the Hamas." Anat Cygielman, "Peres Blames Himself for Not Pressing Arafat," Ha'aretz (English edition), January 5, 1999.
21 David Remnick, "Letter from Jerusalem: The Outsider," The New Yorker 14:13, May 25, 1998, p. 95. By contrast, sec "Address by Yitzhak Rabin," in Towards a New Era in U.S.-Israeli Relations, ed. Yehudah Mirsky and Ellen Rice (Washington, DC: Washington Institute, 1992), pp. 1-2, and Yitzhak Rabin, speech to graduates of the National Security College (official text), August 12, 1993, p. 3, both cited in Efriam Inbar, "Israeli National Security, 1973-96," Annals of the African Academy of Political and Social Science, 555, January 1998, p. 70.
22 "Peres, Shamir Rekindle Old Sparks in Debate over Accords," Boston Globe, December 11, 1997.
23 Author's interview, Jerusalem, June 1994.
24 "The Israel-PLO Declaration of Principles." Article V.
25 On ANC unity and de Klerk's preparation of the NP, see Allister Sparks, Tomorrow Is Another Country (New York: Hill and Wang, 1995), pp. 105-106, 120-121.