Middle East Section

Middle East Articles

Jeff Thompson

Negotiations & The Paris Terrorist Attack

(12/01/15)Jeff Thompson

Terrorists holding 20 people hostage in the Bataclan concert hall spoke to police negotiators five times on a mobile phone before officers finally stormed their hideout and brought the siege to an end.

John Lande

How Can We Help in Major Social Conflicts, If At All?

(11/13/15)John Lande

I have gotten emails from dispute resolution colleagues asking what we, in Missouri’s dispute resolution center, might do (or might have done) to help manage the conflict at our university more constructively.

Joe Markowitz


(10/17/15)Joe Markowitz

The Quartet's work (recently honored with the Noble Peace Prize) illustrates two techniques favored by mediators: (1) acceptance by all of the feuding factions of a set of ground rules, and (2) encouragement of continued dialogue among all of the affected parties to the conflict.

Art Hinshaw

Negotiating with the Dangerous at Fordham Law School

(10/12/15)Art Hinshaw

This dispatch comes from Jackie Nolan-Haley (Fordham) discussing Monday’s program Negotiating with the Dangerous.

Joe Markowitz


(9/18/15)Joe Markowitz

My rabbi's Rosh Hashanah sermon this year concerned the important topic of healing the widening rifts in the Jewish community, which have broken out especially over the nuclear weapons deal with Iran. The problem he was talking about is not so much that there is disagreement about the advisability of this deal. Considering how troublesome and untrustworthy an adversary Iran has been, one would expect strong disagreements among supporters of Israel about how we should deal with that adversary.

Jeff Thompson

Crisis Negotiation: From Suicide to Terrorism Intervention

(8/28/15)Jeff Thompson

This is a snippet from a chapter which uses an account of a real-life crisis negotiation to explore what is know about these high-stakes, emotion-fueled interactions. We begin by reviewing literature relevant to four different interaction periods within the case: first impressions and the verbal and nonverbal factors that effect initial exchanges; rapport development and the communicative skills that facilitate information gathering; sensemaking and the frameworks that help negotiators understand the motivations of their interlocutor; and, influence strategies and their impact on moving a perpetrator from antagonism to cooperation.

Jeff Thompson

Obama Announces Change in Hostage Policy

(8/08/15)Jeff Thompson

President Barack Obama announced Wednesday that the government will no longer threaten to criminally prosecute families of American hostages who pay ransom to get loved ones back from such groups as ISIS.

Joe Markowitz

Thirteen Days in September

(3/31/15)Joe Markowitz

Speaking of peace in the Middle East, I've been reading the new book about the Camp David negotiations by Lawrence Wright. Surprisingly, reading this account made me feel a little more hopeful about the prospects for peace between Israelis and Palestinians, the great unfinished business of the Camp David accords, even though the conventional wisdom in light of Prime Minister Netanyahu's recent re-election is that resolution of the issues in the territories is now a long ways off.

The Role of Intra-Group Consensus-Building in Disarming Militant Groups in Northern Ireland

(3/24/15)Benedetta Berti, Ariel Heifetz Knobel, Gary Mason

This study examines the internal process that led combatant groups in Northern Ireland, focusing on the Loyalist camp, to relinquish armed struggle as a viable strategy to accomplish their political goals. The study focuses on internal dynamics, i.e. intra-group negotiations and consensus- building mechanisms that Loyalist militant organisations employed to switch from violence to non-violence and from confrontation to engagement with their enemies.

John Wade

Negotiation Lessons from the Book (not the Film) of Exodus

(3/06/15)John Wade

The recent film “Exodus: Gods and Kings” has sparked some renewed interest in the actual written record of those events.So I share some of the themes which have emerged belatedly for me in this case study extraordinaire. One of the indicators from research of an “expert” modern day negotiator is someone who takes time to reflect systematically on past negotiations and attempts to record lessons from those events.

Larry Susskind

What's the Right Thing to do When You are Really Angry About What's Happening in America?

(12/19/14)Larry Susskind

Students are marching in the streets to protest the recent killings of Black Americans. They want those in positions of power to acknowledge that these deaths are, at least in part, the result of unchecked racism that is still very much alive in our country. Whatever progress has been made over the past fifty years to address inequality, unfairness, racial bias, ignorance, lack of empathy and unequal opportunities, there is still a long way to go before everyday life in America aligns with the ideals we espouse as a nation.

Andrea Schneider

Talking About Ferguson

(12/05/14)Andrea Schneider

We have started the last week of classes in ADR this week and usually, at this time in the semester, I turn to the overarching subject of how to counsel clients when choosing among different dispute resolution processes. Last night, I took a deep breath, and asked the class to think about the situation in Ferguson.

Karmit Bulman

Processing it All on the Last Day….

(11/21/14)Karmit Bulman

On my last evening in Israel, I walked on the beach and gazed at the sunset over the beautiful Mediteranean Sea and I was full of so many complex thoughts. That day my visit to Neve Shalom Wahat Al-Salam involved me joining a group of German Citizens who came to view the atrocities imposed upon the Palestinians by the Israeli Government.

Jeff Thompson

Creating Spaces for Effective CVE Approaches

(10/04/14)Jeff Thompson

Have a look at the following. It reminds me firstly of Bernie Mayer's Beyond Neutrality- if we as conflict resolution professionals are seeking to make an impact in the world, perhaps we have to move beyond the neutral role of mediators (and other neutral roles).

Jeff Thompson

Creating Spaces for Effective CVE Approaches

(9/19/14)Jeff Thompson

Have a look at the following. It reminds me firstly of Bernie Mayer's Beyond Neutrality- if we as conflict resolution professionals are seeking to make an impact in the world, perhaps we have to move beyond the neutral role of mediators (and other neutral roles).

Tammy Lenski

High Conflict Personality: Are you sure?

(9/12/14)Tammy Lenski

High conflict personality: Are you sure? chaotic neon "He's such a high conflict personality that I'm scared to disagree with him." "She's high conflict and I don't think any of these approaches will work with her." "How can we best deal with high conflict personalities in the workplace?" "I've been labeled 'high conflict' and I'm blamed for starting every argument."

Nick Redding

Do Unethical Leaders Foster Conflict Among Followers?

(9/05/14)Nick Redding

Recent events, such as the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill, questionable accounting practices at Enron, and illegal hiring practices among Silicon Valley’s most prominent companies, are just a few among many examples of unethical organization leadership practices today.While the impact of unethical leadership practices on local communities is often times immeasurable, what is less well understood is the impact of this type of leadership inside the organization. Specifically, how does unethical leadership impact those individuals working under it?

Jeff Thompson

Harvey Hostage Negotiator's Inside Look at Standoff

(9/02/14)Jeff Thompson

In an ABC7 exclusive, a key hostage negotiator gave Eyewitness News an inside look at how he and others helped bring that suburban standoff in Harvey to a peaceful end.

Martin Svatos

When the Mediators Pay the Highest Price

(8/22/14)Martin Svatos

Recent development in the Near East reminds how long and disastrous the Arabic-Israeli conflict is. Unfortunately, it has already claimed thousands of victims and every one of these tragedies could narrate a specific and sad story. One among them is especially important to be commemorated since it recounts a life and work of the first UN mediator who had saved thousands of prisoners in the Second World War and who was later killed carrying out his duties.

“Talk To Me”: What It Takes To Be An NYPD Hostage Negotiator

(8/18/14)Jeff Thompson, Hugh M. McGowan, Ph.D.

Crisis and hostage incidents are known for being stressful, unpredictable, tense, anxiety-filled, and emotionally driven. Add to this volatile concoction is that these incidents often can involve violence that has been threatened or having already occurred. Amidst these chaotic incidents New York City Police Department hostage negotiators emerge to provide the antidote to the ensuing turbulence.

Abraham Miller

The Real Bergdahl Error

(6/13/14)Abraham Miller

For more than a decade, starting with a fellowship at the National Institute of Justice and subsequently conducting research in Europe and Israel, I studied hostage negotiations.

Jeff Thompson

Quick Tip: Hostage Negotiator's Tone of Voice

(6/03/14)Jeff Thompson

Crisis and hostage negotiator's are involved in situations that are tense, stressful, and anxiety-filled. In order to try to reduce the overwhelming emotions being experienced by the person they are trying to help, the negotiator's tone of voice is an important tool that can help move the conversation toward a peaceful resolution.

Jeff Thompson

From Reading the Body Language of Animals To Crisis Negotiator

(5/09/14)Jeff Thompson

Heather Cote of the Strafford County Sheriff’s Office may be only 5-feet, 4-inches tall, but that doesn’t stop her from detaining men twice her size.

Jeff Thompson

Crisis Negotiation

(5/02/14)Jeff Thompson

Secret Skills of Crisis Hostage Negotiators: Slow Down. If slowing things down works for crisis hostage negotiators, read to see if it can help you too.

Jeff Thompson

“Crisis” or “Hostage” Negotiation? The Distinction Between Two Important Terms

(4/04/14)Jeff Thompson

The terms crisis and hostage are commonly used to refer to intense negotiations. The distinction between the two terms is important to understand. This is a pictographic explaining the difference.

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