Al-Zaytouna Centre for Studies and Consultations in Beirut has published a new Arabic book entitled “The Palestinian Political System: Reform Complexities and Activation Mechanisms” which is authored by Dr. Raid Nairat and Sulaiman Bsharat.
Intellectuals, researchers as well as political forces, all are interested in reforming the political system. This study aims at identifying the problems that have hindered and continue to hinder the reform of the Palestinian political system including its two major components: the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Palestinian Authority (PA). It focuses on the significance of the agreement on a Palestinian political system, its components and the mechanisms of transforming it into a public policy.
Title: Al-Nizam al-Siyasi al-Filastini: Ishkaliyyat al-Islah wa Aliyyat al-Taf‘il (The Palestinian Political System: Reform Complexities and Activation Mechanisms)
The book tackles two main issues the first of which is the need to go beyond the official and unofficial institutions, and study the political culture; whether this culture is the basis of the Palestinian political system or it is the political beliefs and humanitarian values reflecting these institutions.
The second issue is the objectives and mechanisms for reform, and the ability of the reform process to produce a Palestinian public policy that can achieve the goals of the Palestinian people. These supreme goals are ending the occupation, establishing the independent Palestinian state, producing a Palestinian political system, which empowers every Palestinian citizen, while enhancing his resilience and protecting his rights.
The book is divided into four chapters, where the first chapter addresses structural and institutional problems of the Palestinian political system. The second chapter tackles the impact of public policies of the Palestinian political system on citizen and society as well as on political and cultural Palestinian values. The third sheds light on the effectiveness of the Palestinian political system and its ability to respond to challenges, while the last presents the mechanisms necessary for political reform.
The study has pursued a multi approach methodology as it depends on the descriptive analytical approach and the experimental approach based on using many tools including the questionnaire. A poll on reforming the Palestinian political system was conducted to understand the opinion of Palestinian political elite in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Also, personal interviews were conducted with a number of political and academic figures and symbols of Palestinian civil society, in addition to micro and macro assessment by academics and experts in scientific research concerned with Palestinian politics.
The study concludes that parliamentarian system must be adopted instead of the mixed system (quasi-presidential). It focuses on the importance of reaching a common Palestinian political program based on achieving liberation and ending the occupation.
It stresses the importance of the participation of different forces and communities of the Palestinian people in defining the public policy in Palestine and abroad. The book presents a number of mechanisms such as holding general conferences in different Palestinian communities, rebuilding the PLO so that it becomes a legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, and reconsidering the PA role of in the political system.