World Leaders In Areas Of Conflict Call For Strategies Outlined In the Groundbreaking Book Elusive Peace

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World Leaders are echoing professor and international peace consultant Douglas E Noll's warning for not embracing changes needed in peace negotiations, summarized in Elusive Peace. "The U.S. traditional policy of using punishment and reward is not effective for maintaining sustainable results, and is an oversimplified strategy for today’s complex conflicts. To have leaders recognize the need for modern strategies offers hope that the US and allies will stop relying on 18th century solutions for 21st century problems.”

Douglas E. Noll Professional Mediator

It is at great human cost that during outdated traditional peace negotiations, children and families flee, suffer famine, disease, and die. Civil unrest can exist years after US and allied countries withdraw from areas of conflict.

Douglas E. Noll, professional mediator and author of Elusive Peace: How Modern Strategies Could Better Resolve World Conflicts (Prometheus 2011), endorses Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan’s proposal for establishing a UN Conflict Mediation Commission to develop strategies for the resolution of disputes across the world (http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=39682&Cr=&Cr1= ).

“It is encouraging that world leaders in countries burdened by long term conflict are ready to use the principles in my book to address peace negotiations. As an example, Rwandan President Paul Kagame issued a warning against traditional methods of diplomacy at the United Nation’s General Assembly’s annual general debate on September 21st by observing that traditional resolutions only halt the conflict for a short time without sustainable solutions,” Noll reports. “This echoes my warning about tragedies that occur when we don’t embrace the changes needed in peace negotiations, which are summarized in Elusive Peace. The U.S. traditional policy of using punishment and reward is not effective for maintaining sustainable results, and is an oversimplified strategy for today’s complex conflicts. To have leaders recognize the need for modern strategies offers hope that the US and allies will stop relying on 18th century solutions for 21st century problems.”

Throughout the book, Noll discusses the dynamics of peace negotiations through mediation. He adds, "It is at great human cost that during outdated traditional peace negotiations, children and families flee, suffer famine, disease, and die. Civil unrest can exist years after US and allied countries withdraw from areas of conflict. Somalia’s famine is an example of this terrible outcome, and unintended consequence. Today’s death toll, famine, disease and families dying in Somalia can easily become tomorrow’s Libya. There is a better way.”

Elusive Peace provides detailed historic examples of how peace negotiations have failed. “I not only give examples, I offer substantial strategies for peace negotiations. Mediation by skilled professionals is the core of negotiating peace resolutions. Mediators recognize the need to assuage irrational thinking. Fear and anger drive violent conflict. These emotions distort rational decision-making. A skilled mediator navigates groups in highly charged emotional states through the process of bringing conflicted people together who have different ideals, beliefs, and definitions of justice.”

Power-based, horizontal diplomatic mediation is no longer sufficient to meet the needs of 21st century conflicts. The UN General Assembly is beginning to recognize the need for more sophisticated, complex processes to bring peace to our world.

After a successful 22 year trial career, Douglas E. Noll found litigation to be a wasteful way to resolve conflicts, and earned his Masters Degree in Peacemaking and Conflict Studies. Since then, Noll has dedicated his life to mediation and peacemaking. Today, Douglas is a nationally recognized mediator, international peace advocate and speaker. He hosts The Doug Noll Show, a weekly radio program dedicated to giving a voice to international peacemakers. His current pro bono project is training murderers committed to life sentences in the largest women’s prison in the world to become peacemakers and mediators. Noll is interviewed by columnists, journalists, and radio hosts for his advice and commentary on world events as they relate to conflict and resolution.

Noll was recently selected from a worldwide search as one of 194 mediators to be included in the International Who’s Who of Commercial Mediation.

Professionally, Doug is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators, a Distinguished Fellow of the American College of Civil Trial Mediators and on the American Arbitration Association panel of mediators and arbitrators. Doug was one of the first U.S. mediators certified under the international mediator standards established by the International Mediation Institute based in The Hague, Netherlands.

He is an author of the books Elusive Peace: How Modern Diplomatic Strategies Could Better Resolve World Conflicts (Prometheus, Spring 2011), Sex, Politics & Religion at the Office: The New Competitive Advantage (Auberry Press 2006), with John Boogaert, and Peacemaking: Practicing at the Intersection of Law and Human Conflict (Cascadia Publishing House 2002), and numerous chapters and articles on peacemaking, restorative justice, conflict resolution and mediation. He is a sought after mediator trainer, lecturer, speaker, and continuing education teacher. Doug has been recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in America by U.S. News & World Report and is a Northern California Super Lawyer in Alternative Dispute Resolution. He has mediated over 1,500 conflicts, including business disputes, clergy sexual abuse cases, victim-offender criminal cases, and large litigated cases. His particular interest is in deep, intractable conflicts where emotions are running high.

As Noll became interested in international mediation efforts Noll observed that international mediators, for the most part, were inexperienced in the science and art of mediation. Their rookie mistakes were making things worse, often leading to genocide or further war. Unfortunately, political leaders, diplomats, special envoys, and retired generals are often appointed to a job for which they are not trained nor have sufficient aptitude. Elusive Peace shows why we can no longer afford to allow political, diplomatic, and military leaders mediate peace accords. They simply don’t know what they are doing. For more information visit http://www.elusivepeace.com. For media inquiries contact Diane Dennis, Inspired Media Communications (http://www.inspiredmc.com) at 503-678-1356.

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