Force as the dominant policy
in The sword is not enough
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In documents and statements, some Arab and Israeli leaders and analysts tout the effectiveness of using force for advancing their basic goals like national security and independence. In 2008–2009, the battle between Israel and Hamas contained multiple examples of this perspective. There are also other historical cases where this idea is a plausible explanation: the 1967 Arab–Israeli war and how it shifted Egyptian and Syrian policy toward Israel; Israel’s strength in the late 1960s and early 1970s as a factor undermining the Palestinian national movement’s military approach; the first intifada, which pushed Israel toward a negotiated resolution of the Palestinian question; and two Israeli unilateral territorial withdrawals that emboldened the ‘force works’ narrative, from Lebanon in 2000 and from Gaza in 2005.

The sword is not enough

Arabs, Israelis, and the limits of military force


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