Middle East Websites
Dr. Richard L. Langill
of this course is to introduce students to the principles and patterns
of international relations. In the first part of the course, we will
examine three approaches to the study of international politics
- Realism, Liberalism and Marxism. We will critically analyze the
assumptions of these approaches and apply them to a series of case
Third, we will examine the role that power plays in
international relations. Since states have the power and military
capability to make war, it is necessary to understand the forces that
help regulate this struggle for power. Balance of power, collective
security and world government have been suggested as approaches to the
establishment of international peace and security. We will examine the
assumptions that each of these approaches make to promote a more
peaceful international order.
Next, we will analyze the process of US foreign policy-making. Some of the questions we will explore in this section include the following: How is US foreign policy made? What models have been used to explain the process of foreign policy making? What is the role of the President, National Security Administration, State Department, and the military in making US foreign policy? What role does Congress, public opinion and the media play in the process of foreign policy making?
Finally, we examine the Arab-Israeli conflict. We will trace the development of this conflict, the major actors, issues, perspectives and policies for dealing with the conflict. We will also examine the Oslo Peace Accords and the problem of negotiating the final status terms for settling this conflict. As part of this section of the course, we will simulate a peace conference with students playing the role of the Israeli government, the Palestinian authority and the United States and other important players. An outline of the simulation will be provided in class.
Middle East Simulation
In this course we will simulate a Middle East peace conference called under the auspices of the United Nations to bring about an end to violence between Israel, the Palestinian authority and various terrorist groups. The conference should address the contemporary cycle of violence between the parties as well as the underlying issues of peace, security and economic prosperity for the region.
We will assume that the UN Security Council has approved of a resolution convening a conference in Geneva, Switzerland with the following participants invited to attend- US, Israel, Palestinian authority, Egypt, Russia, UK, France, and Jordan.
should address the following issues:
will consist of 3-4 students. Students will be responsible for
researching the position of their state on these issues and writing a
7-10 paper addressing these issues from the perspective of their
country. A shorter draft of this position paper will be due just before
the convening of the peace conference with a final the final paper due
Dec 3rd. (The draft only need to outline your country's position
on the conflict) The final paper should consist
The instructor will act as the chairperson for the conference. He will function as a non-partisan presiding officer. Students should conduct themselves with proper decorum. Honest disagreement on the issues is one thing, name-calling or personal insults are not acceptable behavior. Students should be prepared to enter into negotiations outside of class. Politics is the art of negotiation, compromise and finding ways of narrowing differences on issues.
Students should be prepared to use multiple sources of information on the simulation. Obviously, the textbook on the Middle East is a good place to start to gain an understanding of the issues. Most states including Israel and the Palestinian authority have websites that contain good information. The instructor's personal website also has useful links that might aid your research. Finally, the instructor will place issues on reserve in the Library which may be used to facilitate research and discussion.
The examinations will be generated form the lectures, textbooks, reserve readings class discussions, and AV programs used during the semester. When reading the textbooks and reserve readings, students should pay particular attention to the point of view or the author or thesis that is being put forward. Mere recitation of factual information is useful but not sufficient to do well on examinations. Each examination will count 20% of your grade. Class participation based on your willingness to raise and answer questions in discussions will count 20% of our grade. The final 20% of your grade will be based on your participation and written policy paper on the Middle East simulation
Grades for the course are based on the following formula:
Glenn Hastedt. American Foreign Policy. Pearson 8th or 9th Edition
I. INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
II. THE FOREIGN POLICY-MAKING PROCESS