Conflict Trends 1999/1

To Walk Without Fear: The Global Movement to Ban Landmines

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To Walk Without Fear is a comprehensive and authoritative account of the global movement to ban landmines. It brings together leading academics, senior policy makers, and prominent leaders of NGOs to examine and draw lessons from the ‘Ottawa Process’, which culminated in December 1997 when over 120 states signed a convention to ban the use, sales, and production of landmines.

An essay by Nobel Laureate Jody Williams and Steven Goose, of International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL), describes how a global coalition of NGOs led the World towards a ban on landmines, while a chapter by the Canadian diplomats who orchestrated the ‘Ottawa Process’ takes the reader behind the scenes into the diplomatic arm-wrestling that resulted in Canada’s leadership role.

International specialists offer assessments of the military use of mines and their humanitarian consequences, the role of the Red Cross, landmine victims, national ban campaigns (including Noel Stott of the South African Campaign to Ban Landmines), the problems of mine clearance, and interpretations of the legal text of the treaty. Academic specialists analyse the policy process and negotiations, explore the political economy of mines, and identify the implications of the treaty for the development of international humanitarian norms, democratization, and civil society. Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lloyd Axworth, draws lessons from the Ottawa Process for other policy issues.

The book provides a rich source of new information and analyses. It will be both timely and of enduring value to policy makers interested in drawing lessons from the Ottawa Process, to non-governmental organisations interested in replicating its results in other areas, to academic specialists and students interested in foreign policy and international affairs, and to the general public seeking an accessible and readable account of one of the most significant global movements in recent years.