Differences in power (military, political, economic) results in asymmetric warfare. Ostensibly, there are two belligerents, Israel and Hamas. However, there are far more actors involved. Possibly, there has been/is war by proxy that limits the possibilities for a conclusion. What if the strategic objectives of the belligerents (military, political, economic and therefore not limited to Israel and Hamas) are mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive? Isolated from perspectival ethics, rhetoric, etc. one can hypothesize that each actor has a center of gravity, a motive force, and an objective (i.e. each actor can be represented by a vector) suggesting the potential for a geometric solution. However, the resultant vector does not exist. Each actor is composed of opposing forces within itself and is probably better represented by a chaotic field than by a vector. There are multiple fields each with its local optima and an overall systematic optimum. Each actor influences every other actor. Thus, the best that has been achieved are temporary dynamic equilbria; the overall system has never been annealed/crystallized to achieve a global static equilibrium (I propose that spin glass theory offers an excellent model for the situation). I have intentionally modeled the situation in abstract terms because win-lose models predominate the discussion and I believe that the cycle of violence will continue because a solution has to be win-win or no deal. If spin glass theory holds, that will require a particular configuration, a fundamental shift in the amount a systemic energy, and a catalyst (figure(s), event), to produce an annealing event. I have heard of one such event in the history of humankind, but it has not happened yet. I am not a moral relativist, but I do not claim the capacity for moral objectivity and acknowledge that my morality is relative to my position and would change if in one of the other positions. On some level, each side is a rational actor engaged in a cycle of action and reaction otherwise there is no sense of humanity as the basis for resolution, right? Given the situation, each side is acting and reacting on the basis of environmental influences. The differences in positions within each actor’s constituencies and how these differences change and are translated by politicians suggests to me no resolution at present. So, perhaps those of us further away from the geographic center of the conflict can challenge ourselves under easier conditions to model and cultivate peace, abide, and pray for all sides and the people in the middle until dynamic equilibrium is restored.

Advertisements