The new world order and its impact on the Arab Israeli peace process (1991-1999)
This thesis examines the impact of the New World Order on the Arab-Israeli peace process. It argues that, since the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, the old bipolar World Order has disappeared and a new unipolar one has emerged. The United States of America, as the only remaining single superpower, has enjoyed a great degree of influence and a kind of hegemony in international affairs. Its military superiority and economic, technological and diplomatic strength, in the absence of any competing power, have given it the upper hand to pursue its own policies and its own interests. This American unipolarity and hegemony are clearly demonstrated in the Middle East peace process. The United States' unipolarity on the international level and its hegemony on the regional level have allowed it to pursue policies to resolve the Arab- Israeli conflict. Regional states, released from the constraints or protection of the patron- client relationships fostered under the bi-polar Old World Order, have adjusted their own policies to take into account this New World Order. A neo-realist understanding of this has been developed which assesses this process in terms of international and regional balance of power and "rules of the game”. This method had been used to understand the reasons for and nature of the Arab- Israeli peace negotiations that started at Madrid in 1991 and developed in Oslo in 1993. The thesis argues that these negotiations were in fact a single process which was the direct result of this American-led New World Order. Whether through direct or indirect American involvement or through the indirect or direct acknowledgement by regional actors of the nature of the New World Order, American interests and preferences have been strongly reflected in the peace process.