Touval, Saadia 1932–2008

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Touval, Saadia 1932–2008

(Saadia E. Touval, Saadia Eli Touval, Saadia Eli Weltmann)

OBITUARY NOTICE—

See index for CA sketch: Born January 28, 1932, in Zagreb, Yugoslavia (now Croatia); died of gastric cancer, April 17, 2008, in Rockville, MD. Political scientist, educator, and author. Touval held the view that the most effective mediators of international conflicts are not the objective negotiators, as is often thought, but the biased participants whose self-interest fortifies their persistence in the pursuit of an acceptable conclusion. Touval moved from his native Yugoslavia to what was then British Palestine as the teenage son of a diplomat. He remained in the newly formed State of Israel for several years, teaching at Tel Aviv University from 1967 through the 1980s. There he had an opportunity to observe international mediation at work, particularly the failures of the ongoing Arab-Israeli negotiations. He compared theory to practice, not just in the Middle East, but also in Africa and the Balkans, and came to believe that neutrality is not necessarily a virtue. In the 1990s Touval moved to the United States, where he had received a Harvard education years earlier. He became a fellow of the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, DC, in 1993, and taught conflict management at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (also known as the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies) from 1994 to 2007. Touval wrote several books, including Somali Nationalism: International Politics and the Drive for Unity in the Horn of Africa (1963), The Boundary Politics of Independent Africa (1972), The Peace Brokers: Mediators in the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1948-1979 (1982), and Mediation in the Yugoslav Wars: The Critical Years, 1990-95 (2001). He edited International Mediation in Theory and Practice (1984).

OBITUARIES AND OTHER SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Washington Post, April 25, 2008, p. B7.

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Touval, Saadia 1932–2008

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