For a long time the understanding of the Palestinian question has been dominated by the views offered by the Arab governments on the Israeli establishment. But any close examination of the policies of the Arab regimes would reveal that they have done very little to alleviate the plight of the Palestinians. Since the defeat of the Arab regime in June 1967, an increasing number of Arab scholars and intellectuals have been seriously and independently involved in reassessing the political and social conditions of their societies. This book, first published in 1979, is part of that more general attempt to discover the deep-rooted causes of defeat and the general state of socio-economic underdevelopment of the Arab region. The central theme of the four essays in this study pertains to the fluctuating relationship between the Arab regimes and the Palestinian Resistance Movement. It is within this context that the first essay examines the various factors which shaped the relationship at different intervals. The second then goes on to present a case study of how the contradictions between the Arab regimes and the Resistance Movement operate in a crisis situation and reach the level of an armed confrontation. The third essay examines the prospects for peace and war in the region in the light of the political conditions given before Sadat’s visit to Israel. And finally the fourth essay is concerned with Sadat’s peace initiative and its consequences on the relations between Egypt and the Palestinian Resistance Movement.
1. The Political and Ideological Impact of the Palestinian Resistance Movement on the Arab World Since 1967 2. The Lebanese Civil War and the Palestinian Resistance Movement 3. Prospects of War and Peace in the Middle East 4. Sadat’s Peace Initiative and the Palestinian Question