Israeli Prisoner of War Policies

Israeli Prisoner of War Policies : From the 1949 Armistice to the 2006 Kidnappings

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Israeli Prisoner of War Policies: From the 1949 Armistice to the 2006 Kidnappings examines the development of Israel's policies toward prisoners of war across multiple conflicts. Taking POWs is an indication of strength and a method of deterrence. However, the conditions leading to the release of POWs are often the result of the asymmetry in diplomatic power between two parties, or, as in the case of Israel, the gap between military might and diplomatic weakness within a single country. Consequently, the issue of POWs and their military and diplomatic significance represents at least two levels of actors' behavior: what the criteria should be for taking POWs and what mechanism should be employed and what price should be paid in order to secure their release. Studying the prisoner exchange deals involving Israel reveals three eras in the emergence of Israeli POW policy. Israel has had no comprehensive policy or guiding set of directives. The lack of a well-established policy was not only the result of the unstable nature of Israeli politics, but was to a large extent the result of the tendency of most Israeli cabinets to delay critical decisions. Successive Israeli governments have witnessed three distinct periods of conflict requiring unique approaches to POWs: a confrontation with nation states, 1948/49 to the June 1967 War; a mixed challenge posed by national and sub-national players, 1967 to the aftermath of the October 1973 War; and the long battle with sub-national actors, first Palestinians and later Shi'ite and Sunni Muslims. This volume seeks to apply the lessons of Israel's complex POW policies to conflicts around the more

Product details

  • Hardback | 312 pages
  • 157 x 239 x 29mm | 626g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739194712
  • 9780739194713
  • 1,532,524

About Alexander Bligh

Alexander Bligh is chief scientist at the Ministry of Science, Technology and Space, more

Review quote

Israeli Prisoner of War Policies is a rare example of both conceptual clarity and formidable innovation. Bligh grapples with a difficult and understudied theme. The book is not only rich in data embedded and brought together in an elegant and new analytical framework; he does it in a giant leap that will eventually give rise, one suspects, to a theory that stands somewhere in the intersection of military issues, legal constructs, ethical stances, and the political, diplomatic, financial, and economic challenges relating to POWs of and in Israel. An obscure theme becomes almost transparent in his able hands. A must-read text. -- Armando Marques Guedes, Nova Law School and Portuguese Joint Command and Staff Collegeshow more

Table of contents

1.The Internationally Agreed upon Standards for Recognizing POWs/MIAs and the Israeli Working Definitions 2.The Intelligence Dimension of Taking and Losing POWs 3.Early Indications of an Emerging Policy: Strategic Defeats and Tactical Successes, 1949-1955 4.De Facto Policy in the Shadow of a Coming War, 1955-1956 5.Israel Extends its own Working Interpretation of the Term POW: Prisoner Issues in the Wake of the 1956 Conflict to late 1962 6.New Regimes, Old Policies, and the Connection between Regime Changes and the Fate of Israeli Agents in Hostile Hands, 1963-1967 7.The 1967 War: Extending the Israeli Definition of POWs 8.The 1967-1970 Crucial Interregnum: The Challenging Legacy of the War of Attrition 9.Black September, Sub-National Actors, and the Early Internationalization of the Hostage/POW Issue, 1970-1973 10.The 1973 War as a Watershed Line and the Dramatic Shift to Defensive POW Policies 11.The Palestinian Sub-State Actors Taking Over: From POWs to Hostages? The Effect of Fourth Generation Players on the Making of POW Policies, 1974-1985 12.Sub-National Actors Taking Center Stage in the POW Context: 1986 to more