The Decline of the Soviet Union and the Transformation of the Middle East

By David H. Goldberg; Paul Marantz | Go to book overview

Bank. The interim phase, in turn, will have a critical determining effect on final status negotiations, and hence on the prospects for Palestinian self-determination in an independent state. Unable to provide the sort of financial assistance necessary, Russia is unlikely to be able to make a major contribution to this process of consolidation. The P.L.O. will, of course, continue to seek to strengthen its relations with Moscow. But the former superpower has now become a tertiary priority at best. Today, not only Washington and Jerusalem, but Cairo, Amman, and Damascus, the capitals of the Gulf states, of the European Community and Japan--and perhaps even the World Bank--will likely loom much larger as objects of Palestinian diplomacy.


Notes
1.
The financial support of the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, the Fonds F.C.A.R., McGill University and the Inter-University Consortium for Arab Studies ( Montreal) is gratefully acknowledged.
2.
Middle East Reporter ( Beirut), March 31, 1990, pp. 12-13.
3.
Middle East Reporter, March 31, 1990, p. 13.
4.
For a more detailed account of Soviet- P.L.O. relations in the pre-Gorbachev era, see Galia Golan, The Soviet Union and the Palestine Liberation Organization: An Uneasy Alliance ( New York: Praeger, 1980); Helena Cobban, The Palestinian Liberation Organization: People, Power and Politics ( Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984), pp. 221-228; Galia Golan, "The Soviet Union and the P.L.O. Since the War in Lebanon," Middle East Journal, vol. 40, no. 2 ( Spring 1986).
5.
Mohamed Heikal, The Road to Ramadan ( New York: Quadrangle, 1975), pp. 64-65, 82.
6.
Soviet weapons systems deployed by the P.L.O. prior to the 1982 war included (in addition to small arms) BM-14 and BM-21 multiple rocket launchers; 100mm, 122mm and 130mm artillery; ZSU-23-4, SA-7 and SA-9 anti-aircraft weapons; and a number of T-34 and T-54/55 tanks.
7.
According to documents captured by the Israeli Defense Forces in Lebanon, of the thirty most senior members of the September Martyrs battalion of Fateh's Kastel Brigade (based in Sidon in 1982), nineteen had received training in the U.S.S.R. or other East European countries. Raphael Israeli, ed., The P.L.O. in Lebanon: Selected Documents ( London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1983), pp. 96-102. According to one Israeli estimate, as many as 5,000 Palestinians received such training in Eastern Europe after 1973. Paul Hockens and Jane Hunter, "New Mideast Police for New Order," In These Times, September 19-25, 1990, p. 9.
8.
"Resolutions of the Sixteenth P.N.C." in Journal of Palestine Studies, vol. 48 ( Summer 1983), pp. 250-254.
9.
The Soviets were quietly critical, for example, of Syrian military intervention against the P.L.O. and the Lebanese National Movement in the summer of 1976 and of Syrian support for the 1983 rebellion against Arafat from within his own Fateh organization. Golan, The Soviet Union and the Palestine Liberation Organization, p. 191; Adeed Dawisha, Syria and the Lebanese Crisis ( London: Macmillan, 1980), p.

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