Author(s): Bülent AKKU?
Formed through the influence of historical experiences, common beliefs, religions, languages and cultures, as in many other conflicts, identity perceptions are a root cause behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This study undertakes a careful investigation of these historical experiences in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with a focus on the state of national institutions in both nations in a comparative manner. These institutions play a strong role in nation-building process and identity perceptions, as such their examination reveals the current status regarding the incorporation of these institutions into the goal of nation-building. The paper observes that the identity perception-induced conflicts are still the top agendas enough to throw the Middle East into disorder, with a constant potential for war. While the state of warfare between Israel and Palestine plays a crucial role in the formation of national identities, the identity perceptions increase the persistence of the conflict. Consolidation of identity perceptions is one of the most influential factors that shape the nation-building process. These identity perceptions are built on, consolidated and propagated via a variety of sources, such as societal beliefs about oneself and the “other”, ideological and religious roots, educational or military institutions. Thus, these historical, social and cultural sources are the determining factor of this process. The extent to which these components are effectively employed during the nation-building process greatly impacts these nations’ success in the identitybased securitization. The investigation concludes that Israel has been more effective in this process than Palestine.