Re-evaluating the Disengagement Process: the Case of Fatah

Re-evaluating the Disengagement Process: the Case of Fatah

by Gordon Clubb


Recently, a number of studies have looked at the disengagement/de-radicalisation of terrorist groups and individuals. This article critically assesses part of this literature in relation to the process of voluntary collective disengagement, using the case of the Palestinian Fatah organization as an example. It questions the specific focus of most de-radicalisation studies upon solely ending the use of the terrorist tactic, arguing that the disengagement process should be studied in conjunction with groups ceasing to use other forms of political violence as well. Although the article favours an objective definition of terrorism, it also recognises the salience of the term's normative power and argues that both perspectives can play a role in the disengagement process. This process can be divided into a number of stages: (i) declarative disengagement, (ii) behavioural disengagement, (iii) organisational disengagement, and (iv) de-radicalisation. Fatah's disengagement process demonstrates that the process can be conditional, reversible, and selective. Consequently, a number of problems arise in terms of defining when an organisation has actually ceased to use terrorism and other forms of political violence. The article argues that Fatah represents a case of mixed disengagement; it was selective, conditional and mostly only behavioural. However, despite the disengagement process only being partially successful during the Oslo period - and reversed considerably during the al-Aqsa Intifada - it has had some lasting effects on the organisation, making it less likely to re-engage in terrorism.

What makes Terrorism so Special?

Groups like Fatah and Hamas use a wide range of more or less violent tactics which raises the question: why should the focus be only on 'ending terrorism'? A number of scholars argue that terrorism should be seen as a subset of political violence [1]. Therefore it would make sense to focus on how groups disengage from political violence. The reason for focusing on terrorism largely depends on its definition. Definitions of terrorism generally fall under objectivist and subjectivist approaches [2]. Yet studying 'how terrorism ends' necessitates the adoption of an objective definition of terrorism 'as a particular kind of political behaviour' [3] – otherwise measuring whether terrorism ended or not becomes impossible.

One argument for singling out acts of terrorism is that these tend to produce a disproportional impact; therefore there are real benefits in focusing on bringing at least this form of political violence to a halt. Hamas's use of suicide bombings during the Oslo Peace Process (OPP) had a profound impact upon the Israeli population as well as Fatah's disengagement from the peace process. The benefit of a narrow focus on terrorism is that it can be more easily measured; it is possible to trace a decline in the use of suicide terrorism. Although the use of the concept of the 'disengagement process' favours an objectivist definition of terrorism, it would be unfair to dismiss the normative value of the terrorism label (with its stigma) completely. Targeting civilians is widely seen as illegitimate or immoral [4]. However, it is a fact that in some social contexts processes are enacted which aim to legitimise it and it becomes accepted by some sectors of society (e.g. in the form of support for martyrdom operations/suicide bombings). It is well-known that certain reactions of audiences which are significant for terrorists can place normative constraints on a terrorist group. For example, Hamas was constrained in launching suicide bombings when the Palestinian population perceived such actions as less legitimate. When this perception was reversed, there was a considerable increase in suicide bombings. Perceptions regarding the degree of (il-)legitimacy of various forms of political violence among constituencies is crucial for the freedom of operation of a militant group engaged in various forms of armed struggle. A case in point is the decline of support amongst Arab states for the Palestinian armed struggle (terroristic or not); it had a great impact on the PLO. De-legitimisation of terrorism is a crucial element in the de-radicalisation of violent groups. Opinion polls, interviews and discourse analysis can help us tracing changes amongst various significant audiences regarding the perceived legitimacy of various tactics of political violence, including the perpetrators own perception how far they can go in a given political constellation.

Stages of the Disengagement Process

There are a number of studies that have tried to explain the process by which terrorist groups reach and conclude - successfully or not - the final stage in their life cycle or at least came to end the use of terrorist tactics (such as hijackings, kidnapping, bombing of civilian targets) as a form of waging political conflict. This article adopts the term 'disengagement' to describe the overall process. It uses the term 'de-radicalisation' to describe one part of the disengagement process. The different parts of the disengagement process are an adaptation of the terminology proposed by Omar Ashour (2009) and John Horgan (2008). This article focuses on when organisations voluntarily [5] decide to disengage from terrorism (and to some extent: other forms of political violence). It aims to pull together various ideas recently proposed by terrorism analysts to conceptualize various stages of the disengagement process [6].

The disengagement process can be divided into the four following categories; declarative, behavioural and organisational disengagement and de-radicalisation:

(i) The first stage is declarative disengagement; this is a commitment (usually by the leadership) to implicitly/explicitly [7] stop using terrorism/political violence.

(ii) The implementation of this declaration depends upon a number of organisational factors. Its successful implementation is referred to as behavioural disengagement. Behavioural disengagement simply means that the number of attacks, terrorist or otherwise, cease. This can be measured. The disengagement can result in a short-term cease-fire or a longer commitment to cease (terrorist) violence.

(iii) Following behavioural disengagement there is usually the challenge of organisational disengagement which refers to the dismantlement of armed units. This includes demobilising the group's members without damaging organisational splits, mutiny or internal violence [8].

(iv) De-radicalisation refers to a change in discourse and involves the group denouncing and de-legitimising the use of terrorism (and sometimes other forms of political violence as well).

Comprehensive disengagement is the term we use when a group 'abandons terrorism and other forms of political violence) behaviourally, de-legitimise(s) it ideologically and act(s) on that by dismantling its armed units organisationally' [9]. The overall disengagement process is not linear; different types of disengagement can occur in different orders. However, one stage might be more important than the other and it might also lead to progression towards other stages of disengagement.

The stages of the disengagement process sketched above are based on Ashour's work. Yet two elements have been added: the process can be selective and conditional. Firstly, selective disengagement refers to delineating the range of licit targets (e.g. when the PLO renounced 'terrorism', but only against non-Israeli targets) and/or limiting types of violence, perhaps once again to certain targets (e.g. opposing suicide bombings against targets inside Israel). This relates to the extent of disengagement: does it mean the group has to oppose all forms of political violence in all contexts, only terrorism in all contexts, or terrorism and/or other forms of political violence in certain areas of operation? Secondly, conditional disengagement refers to a situation when the disengagement process is dependent upon receiving something in return. It can make the process reversible; the ladder of escalation can be climbed up or down - re-engagement and re-radicalization remain an option. For example, an organisation's commitment to disengagement might be linked to gains resulting from a peace process as was the case with Fatah. It is through incentives such as those a peace process can offer that the disengagement process can be jump-started and, later perhaps, be brought to a successful conclusion.

The temporary and bi-directional nature of the process means that there are some problems in determining when a terrorist group ceases to exist. Jones and Libicki define the end of a terrorist group on the basis of 'the earliest evidence that the group no longer existed or that the group no longer used terrorism to achieve its goals' [10]. However, whereas their study lists the PLO still as an active terrorist group, other authors (e.g. Cronin) hold that the PLO as a terrorist organisation came to an end in 1993. Having a specific date when a terrorist group or campaign 'ended' can only work retrospectively; at best it might be an interim assessment. Some 'organisations undoubtedly continue to exist despite apparent passivity' (e.g. the official IRA before being overtaken by the Provisional IRA in the late 1960s) and it 'is hard to predict when terrorism is likely to be reactivated' [11]. It is not difficult to imagine a data-set of 'how terrorist groups end' becoming quickly obsolete as some groups desisting from acts of terrorism, re-start their use of terrorist tactics and halt it once more. The judgement whether a group has actually stopped using terrorism as a tactic is often in the eye of the beholder. Firstly, there is the problem of defining what counts as terrorism. Secondly, there is the problem of determining whether and which action is attributable to the main group or originating from a splinter group. Thirdly, political expediency and power-relations also affect the decision when a terrorist group has ended its use of indiscriminate violence against civilians. For example, for a while, the United States turned a blind eye to acts of terrorism attributed to the PLO to maintain the momentum of the peace process during the pre-Oslo period. Later, from the al-Aqsa Intifada onwards, the links between Fatah and the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade have been played down, arguably for similar political reasons.

Some of these attribution problems are inherent to the study of clandestine groups. Nevertheless, the proposed conceptualization of the disengagement process might provide benchmarks to measure if a group has stopped using terrorism. It seems likely that once a group has comprehensively disengaged, it is less likely that the process will be reversed than in cases of mere behavioural disengagement. In essence, there needs to be some durability for the concept of a 'disengagement process' to be applicable. Voluntary disengagement appears to involve also organisational transformation: the (former) terrorist organisation might become part of the political system as a legal party. Alternatively, it might become a social movement, a criminal group or, as we will see, become integrated into the (proto-) state's security forces.

In the following, we will assess the utility of the conceptual distinctions introduced here by looking at their explanatory power with regard to Fatah's disengagement process.

Fatah's Disengagement Process

With the signing of the Oslo Peace Accord in 1993, Yasser Arafat had started the first stage, declarative disengagement. This phase is transitional and progress to the next phase depends primarily on the leadership's ability to enforce its decision throughout the organisation. The Oslo Accord provided Arafat with the incentives and resources to implement Fatah's disengagement. Behavioural disengagement was linked closely to a form of organisational disengagement. In 1994 the first contingent of PLO forces were deployed in parts of the West Bank and Gaza (WBG). In the end, some 80 per cent of PLO cadres would be incorporated into the new public sector [12]. The Oslo Peace Process (OPP) stipulated that the Palestinian Authority (PA) should establish a 'strong police force', recruited both locally and from abroad. This instrument allowed Arafat to bolster consensus regarding his leadership and authority to make decisions [13]. Arafat was able to bring Fatah activists from the WBG into the new security apparatus, including local militias 'loosely allied' to Fatah. The incorporation of the Black Panthers and the Fatah Hawks into the PA contributed significantly to the subordination of local resistance. Thereby it weakened a potential source of opposition to the OPP, giving autonomous activists a stake in the process through the prestige associated with their new positions and the material incentive of receiving regular salaries [14].

Arafat's control over the public sector's purse strings, which included the security sector, gave 'him an impressive network of about 350,000 dependants throughout the territories' [15]. The PA offered Arafat the opportunity to create a patronage system that provided strong incentives to former militants to support the OPP and the PA in general. These incentives were concrete and material and differed from the situation of the early 1960's and the years thereafter when it had become clear that revolutionary zeal alone was not enough to maintain members' commitment to the organisation. Thus, the OPP provided direct incentives to initiate and implement the disengagement process. The establishment of the PA facilitated the organisational disengagement of Fatah forces which, in turn, enabled Fatah to behaviourally disengage.

However, Fatah did not organisationally disengage completely; although the vast majority of its forces were incorporated into the PA structures, there were still some operationally active armed Fatah groups. For example, Arafat publicly reactivated the Fatah Hawks in 1994 with the aim of confronting the Islamists [16]. In the same way, the al-Aqsa Intifada demonstrated that even if members of an armed group joined the PA's security sector, it was possible for members to leave and take up arms again, sometimes even against their former employers [17]. Therefore, for organisational disengagement to be successful it has to be total; there can not be exceptions. The state structures that are absorbing them must be able to retain them, whether through stable structures or by virtue of being efficiently ran (i.e. limiting corruption and nepotism). Two inter-related factors prevented complete organisational disengagement; 1) competition between Fatah - PA and the armed groups opposed to the OPP, and 2) the inability of the PA to successfully retain the support from the population.

The challenge posed by groups such as Hamas led Arafat to use Fatah militants against the Islamists. A factor that constrained the PA in fully confronting the Islamists was public support for the much less corrupt Hamas organization. There was also an important part of the Palestinian population that had always rejected the peace process; it became a majority by the time of the al-Aqsa Intifada [18]. The Islamists gained (and lost) from this fluctuating public opposition to the OPP. This forced Fatah activists to compete. Eventually it led to the splintering of Fatah into armed militias after the OPP collapsed in 2000. Possibly the main factor was the PA's dependency on the success of the OPP for its legitimacy. However, internal competition also played a role in undermining the success of the peace process. Another factor was the incompetence of the PA itself; its corruption and nepotism drove away members (e.g. Zacharia Zubeidi) and helped create internal strife as well as public disillusionment [19]. In addition, the consolidation of Arafat's role in the PA sidelined the Fatah movement, creating disgruntled Fatah activists on the ground [20].

Fatah and its affiliated organisations did, by and large, behaviourally disengage from terrorism against Israel throughout the Oslo period. According to the University of Maryland's Global Terrorism Database, there were only 14 incidents of terrorism in the WBG attributed to the PLO, the Black Panthers or Fatah Hawks. No incidents in Israel were attributed to these groups during this period. There was one incident whereby Israeli troops and PA armed police exchanged fire: that was on the occasion of a PA-controlled protest in 1996 against Netanyahu's policies regarding Jerusalem's holy sites [21]. Overall, the vast majority of these incidents, however, targeted Palestinians - such as collaborators or Hamas members although a couple of incidents attributed to the PLO were directed against Israeli targets [22]. However, Israeli secret forces also killed, possibly 'in error' [23], Fatah Hawk members in March 1994. Although Fatah forces were involved in various forms of political violence against Palestinians, this can be partly attributed to the blurred distinction between the role of the PA and the Fatah militias mentioned above. Partly it can be attributed to conflict between the factions. In short, during the OPP it is possible to say that Fatah reached the level of behavioural disengagement. Yet this was only with regard to Israel; Fatah was still active in limited forms of violent confrontations with rival Palestinian factions. However, these confrontations were relatively small-scale.

Overall, Fatah, its affiliates and the PA forces were not engaged in fighting with Israeli targets but fought groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and some leftist groups. The OPP made the Fatah leadership within the PA responsible for preventing such attacks; it was claimed that the PA was not adhering to the terms of the agreement. In addition, there was Israeli criticism of Palestinian rhetoric which, in Israeli perceptions, still appeared to encourage violence. Most of these criticisms concern statements made by notable Fatah/PA figures that a) did not recognise Israel, b) called for the liberation of historic Palestine, c) called for the use of violent tactics to end the occupation, claiming that the option of armed struggle was still available, d) were anti-Semitic/de-humanised Israelis, and e) glorified/praised Hamas' suicide bombings [24]. Thus, despite Fatah having behaviourally disengaged from terrorism (against Israel) and partially disengaged organisationally, it was accused of holding on to radical views; it had not reached the stage of de-radicalisation by de-legitimising terrorist violence. To a large extent this was true. In 1996, when the peace process was faltering, some Fatah cadres called for a return to the armed struggle at a Fatah meeting.

However, this was 'not the majority view' [25]. In 1995 and 1997, between 39 and 43 per cent of Palestinians believed that armed resistance was legitimate; 32 per cent even supported suicide bombing operations [26]. Marwan Barghouti, a rising leader in Fatah, cited such public support for armed struggle as limiting the ability of Fatah to organise more demonstrations in opposition to attacks on Israeli civilians. Barghouti also stated that as 'Fatah is committed to the OPP... we are opposed to all armed attacks. But the important point is to convince Hamas not to perpetrate terror attacks inside Israel'. This reiterates the unsigned agreement between Fatah and Hamas to calm tensions between the factions. Implicitly, this allowed Hamas to operate against Israeli targets inside the occupied territories, but not in areas under the PA or in Israel itself [27]. In essence, Fatah had i) felt that renewing armed struggle was an option for the future if the peace process failed and ii) opposed Islamist attacks inside Israel and supported the PA in acting against these operations. Yet iii) it did not support the PA in any crackdown upon other groups involved in armed struggle in the occupied territories, either because a) they themselves supported the principle of armed struggle or b) they knew the 'Palestinian street' would have reacted negatively. De-legitimisation was limited to attacks within Israel and even that was conditional upon progress in the peace process. 'Armed struggle' within the occupied territories was still a catch-all term which encompassed attacks on civilians (unarmed settlers) as well as Israeli soldiers. Therefore, 'de-radicalisation' was non-existent within Fatah during the OPP; the policy of selective disengagement had now been changed to a prohibition of attacks 'on Israeli civilians inside Israel'. Yet the crossing of this 'red line' itself was conditional on the state of the peace process. In retrospect, it was probably too much to expect that Fatah, an organisation that has been involved in armed struggle for forty years, and the Palestinian people, whose identity was largely forged in the shadow of displacement and resistance [28], to de-legitimise all forms of violence against Israelis - soldiers and civilians - while at the same time seeing Israeli settlements increasing and occupation policies being tightened.

Israel's expectation regarding the disengagement process was one of de-radicalisation, including behavioural and organisational disengagement. It was also to be unconditional [29] - not just for Fatah but for every Palestinian group carrying arms. For most Israelis, progress in the peace process was conditional upon comprehensive disengagement [30] or, at the very least, full behavioural disengagement. The actual disengagement process that Fatah was engaged in was selective – a mixture of behavioural disengagement with organisational disengagement, conditional on progress in the peace process. De-radicalisation was either non-existent or very limited. It mirrored the other aspects of disengagement and was never clear-cut and comprehensive. The perceived failure of the Palestinians and their leaders to unconditionally de-legitimise all forms of violence led the Israeli public to believe Arafat was not truly committed to peaceful co-existence under a two-state solution, but remained intent on a phased program of destroying Israel [31]. However, the entire disengagement process was closely linked to progress in the peace process. The main underlying assumption had been that the Palestinians would substitute the armed struggle for a diplomatic approach based on negotiations that would ultimately lead to a resolution of the conflict.

It was inevitable that Fatah's disengagement would be conditional, especially after they lost their main trump card (recognising Israel) as a condition to enter negotiations. Fatah was actually quite successful in behavioural and organisational disengagement, and the only exception were the Fatah Hawks which were used to control non-conforming Palestinians. Yet this was a choice of Arafat - he could have re-integrated them too. Arafat was successful in co-opting Fatah into the PA. This allowed him to successfully disengage Fatah behaviourally from the armed struggle, even though some Fatah members supported a renewed taking up of arms. Fatah did try to de-legitimise violence against civilians in Israel as these attacks had the most devastating effect on Israel's perception about the utility of the peace process. However, Fatah did not de-legitimise other forms of violence. In the end, Fatah was responsive to the Islamist attacks against Israelis and how the Palestinian population judged these. Yet these attacks highlighted for Israel Fatah's inability to de-legitimise them. However, the failure to de-legitimise all violence would not have been such a problem if there had been behavioural disengagement amongst all Palestinian factions, which, as the OPP stipulated, was the responsibility of the PA to bring about.


The 'disengagement process' conceptualization introduced here appears to be a useful tool for analysing the different stages a terrorist organisation can pass through. While, ideally, the goal is comprehensive disengagement, mixed forms of disengagement can definitely be valuable and contribute to success as long as the incentives that initiated the process can be maintained and promises made related to them fulfilled. The conditionality and reversibility of the disengagement process do not undermine the utility of the disengagement process concept; rather they are key parts of it. If the leadership of a group is to decide to halt the use of terrorism, it will need to gain control of alternative resources and action strategies as only these allow it to pursue the same, or more limited goals, without the use of terrorist tactics. Incentives, however, have to be distributed amongst the members of the group. Replacement incentives will have to be in some ways similar to the ones that led members to join the group in the first place. In the case of Fatah-PLO this led to the peace process. Obviously, the failure to deliver sufficient incentives to all stakeholders means that (some) members were prone to resort to violence again. However, the peace process provided also other incentives. These are long-term and still have an impact on Fatah members today. The PA is a driving force for disengagement because it can provide distinct material incentives to co-opt fighters. If and when it also enjoys widespread legitimacy, the PA could probably also regain and enforce a monopoly of power.

Despite the fact that the disengagement process can be conditional and reversible, it is a fact that the group entered a process, which would bring about changes. First of all, there are the changes that a group has to make to begin the disengagement process, both at the declaratory and behavioural levels. Fatah-PLO had to change its strategy and its goals structurally (e.g. changes in discourse, changes in its charter, and changing also to some extent its supporting constituencies and alliances). All this was necessary in order to be in a position to obtain gains from disengagement. Secondly, organisational disengagement leads to major structural changes. Yet it depends on how this type of disengagement is brought about. Fatah's organisational disengagement only saw its members become PA security sector members. They could re-engage in armed struggle at an individual level quite easily. Nonetheless, they still remain mostly part of the PA. Thirdly, de-radicalisation changes the outlook of individuals regarding the use of violence. A reversal at this stage is less likely, especially if there has been comprehensive disengagement and if de-radicalisation is mirrored at the social level - thus diminishing the role of the complicit surround [32]. Fatah did behaviourally disengage from terrorism against Israel during the OPP. Although organisational disengagement was a mixed bag, integration into the PA's structures was essential for ensuring behavioural disengagement. Failure to de-radicalize was, however, understandable in the given context. Yet the leadership could have done a great deal more to prepare it members and the population for the major cognitive shifts required. Although the al-Aqsa Intifada saw Fatah pick up the gun against Israel again, this should in fact not have come as a surprise. The fact that Fatah has reverted to the position during the Oslo period and not to its position before the Oslo period, suggests that the disengagement process has had a long-term effect on the organisation, with armed struggle being replaced by diplomacy by its members for the first time in its history. Overall, Fatah's disengagement process has been partly successful; the likelihood it will commit itself to a terroristic form of struggle in the same way as it did in the 1970's is very small indeed.

About the Author: Gordon Clubb holds a Masters degree from the University of St Andrews (Scotland). A former intern of St. Andrews' Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence (CSTPV), he has written a number of articles on the Israel-Palestine conflict. Currently he is preparing for his PhD.


[1] John Horgan and Michael Boyle. ' A Case against 'Critical Terrorism Studies'. Critical Studies on Terrorism, Vol.1, No.1, 2008, p. 57. Political violence includes a wide variety of tactics, ranging from coordinated stone throwing and arson to violent demonstrations, destruction of property and sabotage on the lower end to macro-violence such as ethnic cleansing, mass deportation, large-scale massacres and genocide on the upper end.

[2] Martha Crenshaw. Terrorism, Legitimacy, and Power. Connecticut, Wesleyan University Press, 1983, p. 1.

[3] Ian S. Lustick. ' Terrorism in the Arab-Israeli Conflict: Targets and Audiences'. In: M. Crenshaw (Ed.) . Terrorism in Context, University Park, The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1995, p. 516.

[4] Steven Kull et al. Public Opinion in the Islamic World on Terrorism, al--Qaeda, and US Policies, World Public Opinion. College Park, University of Maryland, 2009.

[5] Horgan noted that disengagement can be voluntary, involuntary, or somewhere in between. This article recognises that there are certainly external forces that pushed Fatah into disengagement; in that sense it was not entirely voluntary.

[6] The 'disengagement process' is described as the 'de-radicalisation process' by Omar Ashour. However, as de-radicalisation suggests a process that is cognitive (Fink and Hearne; 2008, p. 3) or psychological (as Horgan labels it), in this article I prefer to use the term de-radicalisation to describe this part, whereas disengagement is referring to the overall process.

[7] Groups do not always begin a disengagement process knowingly; they might declare a temporary cease-fire, which they might not see as the beginning of a 'disengagement process'.

[8] Omar Ashour. The De-radicalisation of Jihadists. London, Routledge, 2009, p. 6.

[9] Ibid, p. 30.

[10] Seth Jones and Martin Libicki. How Terrorist Groups End. Santa Monica: RAND Corporation, 2008, p. 5.

[11] M. Crenshaw, in D. Rapoport. Terrorist Organisations, London: Frank Cass, 2001, p. 78.

[12] Nigel Parsons. The Politics of the Palestinian Authority, Oxon: Taylor & Francis Group, 2005, p. 130.

[13] Ibid., 132.

[14] Ibid., 158.

[15] Ibid., 132.

[16] Graham Usher. Dispatches from Palestine, London, Pluto Press, 1999, p.70; and Journal of Palestine Studies; Vol. 24, No. 3, 1995, p. 162.

[17] Cherly Rubenberg. The Palestinians: in Search of a Just Peace. London, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2003, p. 337; Zacharia MacIntyre. Zubeidi: The Marked Man. The Independent, May 2004.

[18] Jerusalem Media Communication Centre (JMCC).

[19] Abu Zayyad; Brand New Fatah?, Jerusalem Post, 2009.

[20] Nigel Parsons, op. cit., p. 130.

[21] Benny Morris. Righteous Victims. New York, Vintage Books, 2001, p. 642.

[22] Global Terrorism Database, START (University of Maryland); accessed on 17th August 2009.

[23] Journal of Palestine Studies. Vol. 23, No. 4, 1994, p. 164.

[24] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs; August 1997; accessed on 17th August 2009.

[25] G. Usher, op. cit., p. 137.

[26] JMCC, 1995 and 1997.

[27] Menachem Klein, in: Bruce Weitzman and Efraim Inbar. Religious Radicalism in the Greater Middle East, London, Frank Cass, 1997, p. 123.

[28] Anders Strindberg. 'The Damascus-Based Alliance of Palestinian Forces: A Primer'. Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 29, No. 3 (Spring, 2000), p. 62.

[29] G. Usher, op. cit., p. 67.

[30] Ibid.

[31] Alan Dowty. Israel/Palestine. Cambridge, Polity Press, 2008, p.155.

[32] Louise Richardson. What Terrorists Want. London, John Murray Publishers, 2006.

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