The Palestine Papers
Mitchell Proposal - International Peace Maintenance Mission
Document entitled "International Peace Maintenance Mission," that outlines objectives, principles and operational requirements as pertains to Mitchell Proposal.
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1. Aim

  •  To create secure conditions and a conducive atmosphere for the conclusion of a permanent settlement between Israel and Palestine
  •  To establish the basis and prepare for an effective transition to an International Monitoring and Implementation Mission (IMIM) to underwrite the permanent settlement

2. Objectives

  •  Establish a cease-fire between the parties
  •  Prevent violent activities by either party
  •  Assist the parties in the prevention of violence by other organized or individual actors
  •  Guarantee freedom of movement in all aspects for all peoples (including action against arbitrary and inconsistent application of restrictions)
  1.  between Palestinian cities
  2.  between Gaza and the West Bank
  3.  between Palestine and Israel
  4.  across international borders (West Bank/Jordan, Gaza/Egypt)
  •  Monitor the freeze of Israeli settlement expansions; the third further redeployment; and the release of Palestinian political prisoners held by Israel
  •  Protect
  1.  the Palestinian population from settler violence from settlements and other places
  2.  the Palestinian population from IDF use of disproportionate force
  3.  Israeli citizens from reprisals
  •  Guard against arbitrary arrest and detention, and abuse of minimum human rights standards
  •  Help create an environment for the improvement of economic conditions
  •  Ensure mutual fulfillment of past or additional agreements reached between Israel and the Palestinian Authority

3. Principles

  •  Consent: The mission is based on the consent of the parties by agreement.

  •  Coalition: The mission is established as a non-UN operation, with a lead nation and other nations participating in pursuit of a common action. The mandate may be supported by an additional resolution of the UN Security Council, without necessary reference to Chapter VI or VII of the UN Charter.

  •  Partnership: The mission is in an equal partnership with the parties. This is not an unarmed observer force nor a static and defensive peace-keeping mission. Nor is it an enforcement operation as against the parties. It is between these extremes. It is not merely assisting the parties nor does it control the parties. It operates jointly with the parties normally, but not exclusively.

  •  Limited Intervention Powers: The mission exercises independently limited powers of intervention at the tactical level. This will have been consented to by the parties in advance.

  •  "Pol-Mil": This is a multifunctional political and military operation, with specialized police units. It is integrated in a political process and is under overall civilian command.

  •  Pervasive Deployment: The mission is not deployed along static lines, but pervasively and freely throughout the area of operation.

  •  Impartiality: The mission is not neutral and inert, but dynamically fulfils its objectives according to the impartial application of the terms of its mandate.

  •  Human Rights: In its own operations, the mission adheres strictly to the content of human rights instruments, international criminal law and the humanitarian laws of war. The mission is not above the law.

  •  Effectiveness: The standard of measurement of effectiveness of the mission is to make a difference in the daily lives of the local population, and to create an environment that is accepted popularly in support of the parties' determination of a final settlement.

4. Operational Requirements

  •  Specialized Assets: This mission requires police forces with military status (Multinational Specialized Units - MSU), or constabulary units, and military forces with policing capabilities. Both will operate at the same tactical level. (The UK military is well-acquainted with this kind of mission. The Australian SAS and Federal Police, as well as their New Zealand counterparts, have shown they can conduct this kind of mission effectively. The Italian Carbinieri has been the basis for multinational specialized units in the Balkans. The US military is focused on improving its Pol-Mil functioning, through for instance its Presidential Decision Directive 56. Of Scandinavian units, the Norwegian military has adapted well to this kind of mission.)

  •  Specialized Staff: The mission needs to take advantage of a flexible staffing process that draws on specific individuals with key experience from the last decade of peace operations.

  •  Pol-Mil Campaign Planning: As a political and military/police operation, the mission must be underwritten by a comprehensive and multifunctional campaign plan.

  •  Operational Level Political Will: Strategic level political will needs to be established at the operational level and function on an on-going basis.

  •  Delegation of Authority: With the right units and staff, and with strategic level political support translated at the operational level to the tactical level, the mission will be decentralized and rely on the initiative of individuals at the lowest level of the organizational structure.

  •  Harmonization: Unity of purpose and unity of effort is to be achieved vertically (at different levels of the mission) and horizontally (across the military, MSU and political elements of the mission, with the parties and other relevant actors in the area of operation). Techniques will include: integrating the mission leadership and component chiefs in drafting and/or gaming the campaign plan of the mission; establishing a planning team and headquarters prior to deployment; the establishment of an executive committee and joint committees at relevant levels of the mission.

  •  Status of Forces Agreement: The parties will agree in a specific SOFA to the rights and duties, and privileges and immunities of the mission in its area of operation. It will be accorded the normal status of a UN mission. The mission will be protected by the content of the international Convention on United Nations and Associated Personnel, and its violation will be deemed a violation of international criminal law with universal jurisdiction for prosecution.

  •  Integration with the Population: The civilian staff and troops of the mission must not operate exclusively in relations between the parties, but must relate directly to the local population.

  •  Information/Intelligence Capacity: The mission will require area experts attached to the headquarters. It will also require a capacity to collect, collate and analyze information gathered from the mission area.

5. Mission Organization

 Operational Level

  1.  Planning Team: This is established as far in advance of the mission as possible. It will include military, constabulary, and political planning expertise. It continues to exist throughout the life of the mission, adapting the campaign plan on an on-going basis as the operational environment changes, and anticipating and preparing for further contingencies. It also plans for the IMIM.

  1.  Joint Monitoring Commission (JMC): This embodies strategic level political will in an on-going operational sense. It functions as a political authority within the theatre of operations, with joint decision-making power that binds the parties. It is a political will cell that harnesses the initial agreement on the mission to ensure its effective functioning. It translates to the operational level, and in turn tactical levels, the political will behind decisions made at the strategic level, and generates further momentum in implementation through confidence and leverage. It also fills gaps in the initial agreement underwriting the mission that arise in the midst of the operation. It is a political decision-making authority, and much more than merely a coordinating mechanism or diplomatic body exchanging information.

  1.  Level of Members: The JMC is an in-theatre body that meets regularly, perhaps weekly or bi-weekly. Therefore, the state members need to be of a credible level, but deployed permanently and operationally active.
    1.  Chair: The JMC would be chaired by the lead-nation of the operation, and possibly the operational commander.
    2.  Composition: The JMC includes the parties and the guarantors of the mission. These may include the US, members of the EU and Egypt.
    3.  Staff: The JMC requires a small staff or secretariat, which should be part of the operational headquarters.
    4.  Rules and Code of Conduct: The JMC requires operating rules of procedure for decision-making, compliance and non-compliance, as well as relations with other actors, including international and non-governmental organizations, elements of the local population, and individual experts. It also requires principles governing such issues as media relations and public restraint.
    5.  Timing: A JMC must be operational prior to deployment.

  1.  Joint Monitoring Committees: There would be a Joint Military Monitoring Committee (JMMC) and a Joint Police Committee (JPC). These report directly to the JMC, and it would be within its powers to increase the number of joint committees.

  1.  Function: The committees are charged with the elaboration of details for implementation with regards to the mandate, or additional determinations of the JMC, and in accordance with the campaign plan of the mission. They may make recommendations to the JMC.
    1.  Chairs: The JMMC is chaired by the Commander of international military forces and the JPC is chaired by the Commissioner of international constabulary forces.
    2.  Composition: The committees are composed of the parties under the international chairs. Like the chairs, the representatives of the parties must be the actual operational commanders with control over forces that will have to implement the common understandings reached in the committee. They must be in a position to transmit orders directly to forces on the ground under their responsibility. Orders will be based on details determined in the committees as approved by the JMC. Representatives outside the chain of command cannot be accepted.
    3.  Task Forces: To achieve harmonization between the committees, or between the committees and other actors in the theatre of operations, ad hoc Task Forces may be established. They should only be established when individual meetings are insufficient. Meetings may include representatives of international organizations, non-governmental organizations, local interest groups or communities, if they are relevant to the task to be accomplished.

  1.  Headquarters: This will include the operational commander, who may be termed a "Director-General", and his or her immediate staff, as well as the component chiefs. It also includes support units, such as public information, information collection and analysis, and administration. A Deputy Operational Commander can be responsible for headquarters officials and their offices, including a chief of staff, chief administrative officer, chief financial officer, chief public affairs officer, and chief information officer. The operational commander must:

  •  implement the decisions of the JMC, within the framework of the mandate;
    •  ensure harmonization within the international operation, amongst the components through the Executive Committee;
    •  ensure harmonization between the international operational components and corresponding joint committees, by designating the component chiefs as chairs of the committees; and
    •  focus on transforming the conditions in the area of operations, and not merely on the organization of the mission.

  1.  Executive Committee: This includes the Director-General as chair, the Commander of the military force, the Commissioner of the constabulary MSU, and the Director of the Political Office. By comparison: the JMC makes political decisions governing the mission as a whole; the joint committees determine operational modalities which are transmitted down the parties' chain of command; and the executive chiefs direct the operations of their individual components.

  1.  Ombudsman's Office: An independent Ombudsman's Office should be established separately from both the JMC and operational executive, though materially supported by the operational headquarters. Symbolically it should be located away from the JMC and headquarters. The purpose of the office is to hear specific grievances by the local population against the mission, including damage it may cause to private property. It is not a judicial system in transition for all legal disputes, nor should it be politicized. It should be open to any individual wishing to bring a genuine case against the mission, including personal abuses of power or fiscal corruption. The decision of the Ombudsman should be binding on the Operational Commander and component chiefs.

Tactical Level

  1.  Military Forces: The multinational military force is commanded by the Force Commander, under the authority of the civilian Director-General. The forces will need to be capable of appreciating internal security operations. They will rely in their operations on advance knowledge of events as much as possible and on preventive action throughout liaison with the parties, other organized and individual actors and local communities. The size and composition will be the result of further assessment. (US or equivalent forces may be responsible for the guarantee of freedom of movement and overall security; British or Australian SAS or equivalents may be responsible for ensuring the settlement freeze and protection tasks).

  1.  Constabulary MSUs: The constabulary units are commanded by the Commissioner, under the authority of the Director-General. They will have the power of investigation and limited intervention in incidents. They will rely in their operations on advance knowledge of events as much as possible and on preventive action throughout liaison with the parties, other organized and individual actors and local communities. (Italian Carbinieri may be responsible for investigation of incidents, detention or the prevention of arbitrary detention.) The size and composition will be the result of further assessment.

  1.  Political Office: The Director of this office reports to the Director-General. It will have the capacity to gather and analyze information. While it will complement the strategic and operational level political processes, it will particularly focus on tactical level political conditions and liaison with the parties, other organized and individual actors and local communities.

  1.  Task Committees: To accomplish specific tasks jointly with the parties and other actors, including international and non-governmental organizations, joint committees may be established on an ad hoc basis. These will complement the logic of joint operations between the mission and the parties at all levels of the mission.

6. Nominal Phases

  1.  Predeployment

  •  D - several months: Planning office established

- assessment visits by planning team lead to permanent in-theatre office

- identifies data base of mission staff

- drafts initial campaign plan and convenes campaign planning exercises with mission leadership and subsequently with staff

- prepares for establishment of headquarters and JMC

  •  D - several weeks: Headquarters, Executive Committee and JMC established

- staff and headquarters space identified and deployed

- key staff of Political Office deployed

  1.  Deployment

  •  D - several days: military and constabulary forces arrive
  •  D-Day: Cease-fire begins
  •  D + several days: Joint Monitoring Committees established
  •  D + 1 week: military and constabulary forces deploy throughout mission area jointly with forces of the parties
  •  D + several weeks: freedom of movement regime established
  •  D + two months: Ombudsman's Office established

  1.  Sustainment

  •  D + several months: focus on objectives of past agreements and generate momentum on final settlement questions in JMC
  •  D + several months: focus on maintaining peace and security in environment
  •  D + several months: planning office continues to adapt campaign plan with the operational commander, and begins focusing on follow-on IMIM

  1.  Transition to IMIM

  •  JMC continues throughout IMIM and subsequently becomes basis for Israeli-Palestinian security organization
  •  Joint Monitoring Committees increase in number according to specific tasks outlined by the permanent settlement, and after IMIM become bodies for Israeli-Palestinian cooperation
  •  Operational Commander may change
  •  Headquarters will increase in size
  •  Executive Committee will increase in size according to the number of components deployed as part of IMIM
  •  Operational Components increase in number according to the terms of the permanent settlement (military forces may eventually transition to an MFO-type long-term trigger mechanism in Jordan River Valley)
  •  Ombudsman's Office continues work until IMIM withdraws