The standoff and ultimate tragedy in Waco, Texas, highlights the potential volatility and uncertainty of crisis negotiations and demonstrates the challenges law enforcement officials face as they attempt to resolve these situations. Hammer's book provides a practical negotiation approach (the S.A.F.E. model) that hostage negotiators and first responders can use to help save lives in situations where violence or the threat of violence is present. He identifies methods of interaction and communication during a hostage crisis that help to dispel tension and resolve situations peacefully.
Combining approaches from various schools of thought on the topic, and applying the methods to both domestic and international contexts, the author has devised a model that is applicable to many types of crisis negotiations and focuses on interaction, communication, and discourse designed to bring a situation down to a manageable level. Through the analysis of several cases representing domestic, criminal, and suicidal situations, he provides a vivid roadmap to the ways in which crisis negotiation can be used to dispel violence before it takes place.
About the Author:
Mitchell R. Hammer is President of Hammer Consulting, LLC, a conflict and crisis resolution organization, and Professor Emeritus of International Peace and Conflict Resolution at The American University, The School of International Service, International Peace and Conflict Resolution. He is co-editor, with Randall G. Rogan and Clinton R. Van Zandt, of Dynamic Processes of Crisis Negotiation: Theory, Research and Practice (Praeger, 1997). Dr. Hammer frequently provides expert analysis for the media, including NBC News, CNN, USA Today, and the Washington Post.