Peace and Authoritarian Practices: The Impact of Normalization with Israel on the Arab World
45 Pages Posted: 9 Jul 2022
Date Written: June 22, 2022
How can peace initiatives reinforce authoritarian practices? Peace, in the name of political and cultural development, can function to uphold, facilitate, and improve upon authoritarian practices under certain conditions. I use the recent steps towards normalization and, in some instances, peace agreements between Israel and a number of Arab states to make this argument. These initiatives have facilitated authoritarian practices by necessitating the increase of state repression, fraying social ties, and expanding regime capacity through the acquisition of repressive technologies. I examine this dynamic across four GCC states with varying authoritarian practices and ties to Israel: UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. Using ethnographic analysis and interviews, this paper contributes to our understanding of authoritarian power and how it functions, transnationally and at varying levels within and outside state authority.
Keywords: illiberal peace, Arab Gulf states, authoritarianism, Palestine, Israel
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation