Strategies for building awareness for the potential of peace education in Cameroon Ben Oru Mforndip
Has Democracy Enhanced Development in Africa? Conrad John Masabo
Permanent Emergency Powers in France: The ‘Law to Strengthen Internal Security and the Fight Against Terrorism’ and the Protection of Human Rights Lena Muhs
Women’s Political Representation in Sri Lanka: Leading towards Prosperity or Peril Pujika Rathnayake
Lack of empathy as a threat to peace Victoria Scheyer
The death of democracy in Honduras Daniel Bagheri S.
The Persons Who Changed the Lives of Terrorists and Criminals Surya Nath Prasad
Teaching Peace from Tales of the City: Peace Education through the Memoryscapes of Nagasaki Patporn Phoothong
Reflections of Refugees in Africa Wyclife Ong'eta Mose
Challenges and prospects of AU to implement the Ezulwini Consensus: The case of collective security and the use of force Tunamsifu Shirambere Philippe
The Right to Food Shant Melkonian
Freedom of Expression Under Threat in Zambia Mariateresa Garrido
Douglas Janoff on LGBTQIA Human Rights Luciana Téllez
Common Things: Communication, Community, Communal Peacebuilding Lina Patricia Forero Martínez
The political Crisis of the 2017 Honduran Election Daniel Bagheri S.
Water Security in the Sixaola River Basin Adrián Martinez Blanco and Diana Ubico Durán
Reborn Arunima Chouguley
An Open Letter to the American People: Political Responsibility in the Nuclear Age Richard Falk, David Krieger, and Robert Laney
- Strategies for building awareness for the potential of peace education in Cameroon 01/26/2018
Peace education is yet to become a reality in Cameroon. This it seems because many persons do not know about it or better still because many persons are not aware of its benefits. Though unaware or ignorant about peace education, there are lots and lots of conditions that warrant the teaching of peace education in Cameroon. The purpose of this paper is to discuss some of the strategies for building awareness about peace education and to show that there are conditions that necessitate the teaching of peace education in Cameroon.
Keywords: Strategies, Building awareness, potentials, Peace, Education, Pedagogy.
- Teaching Peace from Tales of the City: Peace Education through the Memoryscapes of Nagasaki 12/04/2017
To what extent can the memoryscapes of a city contribute to peace education? I argue that narratives both create and destroy the imaginaries of peace. The failure of peace museums to create an effective vision of peace reduces them to the level of historical museums. Using the framework of peace education, I explore the exhibitions, contents, objects, and messages presented in the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum and the Oka Masaharu Memorial Nagasaki Peace Museum. To demonstrate their contributions toward peace education, I analyze the power of narratives contained in these two peace museums and their positioning in the geography of peace education in Japan. Finally, I suggest which factors support the realization of peace education in peace museums.
- The Unraveled and Disquieting Human Rights Violation of Afghanistan 08/04/2017
The issues of Human Rights violations have always been of grave concern to the Human Right Defenders. The cases of human right violations ignite fury and anguish and pose challenge for the world. This paper here forth brings forward the odious crime of ‘Bacha Bazi’, and explains how the organized crime takes place in the country, it reflects on the plight of the victim, questions the responsibility of the government to act and pushes for humanitarian intervention. It states that though the crime is restricted to one country but the onus of demolishing this traditional practice lies on the international community as a whole. The world should therefore come together and join hands to save the future of the Afghan Boys.
Keywords: Bacha Bazi, International Conventions, Human Rights, Young boys, Afghanistan, Sexual Slavery
- The Tlatelolco Treaty at 50: The Continued Relevance of the Latin American Nuclear Weapons Ban 02/08/2017
Latin America and the Caribbean went nuclear weapons free in 1967 with the signing of the Tlatelolco Treaty, an historic accomplishment and an important reference in contemporary International relations.
In 2013, the World Future Council, together with the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs and the Inter-Parliamentary Union, honoured the Tlatelolco Treaty with the Future Policy Award on disarmament for its invaluable contribution to advancing regional peace and security, creating a precedent and inspiration for subsequent Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones and providing impetus to the global elimination of nuclear weapons.
On 13 February, OPANAL together with the Mexican Foreign Ministry will host a high-level seminar to commemorate the treaty’s anniversary and discuss its relevance in addressing current and future nuclear threats.
- ECOWAS and Intrastate Conflict Mediation in West Africa: The Case of Cote d’Ivoire 10/04/2016
- After all, do guns increase or decrease crime? Let's see the data 07/06/2016
Originally published by Carlos Goés at Instituto Mercado Popular
Translated by Pedro Henrique L. do Nascimento
- Stranded migrants, human rights, sovereignty and politics 05/06/2016
Law, human rights and migration specialists analyze the case of the Cuban migrants who remained stranded for more than two months in Costa Rica, after Nicaragua refused to grant transit visas, truncating their voyage it to the United States. Politics, sovereignty, the application of legal instruments and the fulfillment of the migrants’ human rights: how are they balanced and prioritized as governments make decisions?
This article was originally published in Spanish by the Costa Rican magazine Firma.
- Warring factions in Libya show little regard for civilian life, says UN, reporting 'gross' rights abuses 11/17/2015
New report by the UN Support Mission in Libya and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights documents widespread human rights abuses and other violations of international law.
- Under the Guise of Protecting Human Rights and Establishing Democracy: US Intervention in Sri Lanka 06/29/2015
The paper argues that strong US intervention in Sri Lanka after the end of the island’s armed conflict in 2009 is not based on altruistic efforts to protect human rights as presented in mainstream sources, but stems from deepening US geopolitical and ideological interests in the Indian Ocean region. Keywords: Sri Lanka-US relations, US foreign policy, North-South relations, Neoliberal policy, interventionism, Indian Ocean, US-China relations
- War is a Remix: Organized violence from blood sacrifice to cyberattacks 03/16/2015
This article applies the concept of remix from media and communication studies to an analysis of the history and transformation of war. From this perspective, each iteration of war can be seen to reference and recombine existing concepts, strategies, and tactics, a process which seems to correspond with the parallel development of technology.
- From Vienna to New York: Diverging attitudes and expectations among NPT members spell trouble for the 2015 NPT Review 01/26/2015
The resurgence of Cold War style rhetoric between Russia and "the West", ongoing concerns over North Korea's nuclear program, a still elusive nuclear deal with Iran, and the recurrent fear of nuclear-armed non-state actors all stand as stark reminders that humanity still lives with the unacceptable risk of nuclear war. In this timely and important article, Rob van Riet reviews the promises and ambiguities of recent conferences, summits, working group sessions, legal actions, and negotiations on nuclear weapons, and evaluates the potential of the NPT review conference in May this year to make real political progress towards the goal of nuclear disarmament.
- The Role of Regional Integration in Fighting Crime and Terrorism: The Case of the African Union’s (AU’s) Initiatives, 1999-2014 09/18/2014
As regional organizations facilitate economic integration, they also find themselves increasingly taking responsibility for security issues as well. This paper outlines the experience of the Africa Union, and the challenges it faces as it emerges as a guarantor of security on the continent.
- Ukraine Conflict: Resolution through Negotiation 08/22/2014
This paper analyzes the Ukrainian crisis from an international perspective, drawing on the theories of realism, neo-colonialism, and structural functionalism. It posits the necessity to include all the conflicting parties in a negotiation process in order to secure a sustainable peace agreement and proposes a detailed negotiation framework.
- Afghanistan after the US withdrawl 07/18/2014
This paper analyses the role of Afghanistan's regional neighbours in securing it's recovery and stability, as well as the wider implications of America's strategic policies in the region. Will things fall apart or hold together in Afghanistan after December 2014?
- Kirkuk Conflict: The Underlying Energy Dimension 05/20/2014
This paper offers a different perspective on the conflict within Kirkuk Governorate vis-à-vis the commonly held view of it being principally an ethno-national conflict based on territorial claims of Kurdish nationalism. The foundation of this analysis is the recognition that the local politics of the energy rich Kirkuk region are increasingly connected with the national and regional energy geopolitics, which are responsible for many of the defining characteristics of the conflict today. After reviewing the positions and interests of various stakeholders, this paper lays out certain recommendations that can be considered by relevant parties in resolving the conflict.
- Discerning for Peace in Africa: The Sudan Civil Wars and Peace Processes 1955-2013 02/06/2014
Separation of the Sudan into the Republic of Sudan (North) and the Republic of Southern Sudan (South) was globally extolled as the long-lasting solution to one of the longest civil wars in post-Colonial Africa. However, recent developments in Sudan: continued clashes between north and south, crises in the contested areas and tribal civil wars have uncovered that: separation without addressing the principal root causes of the conflicts is not the panacea to prone and protracted civil wars. Taking a historical analysis framework, the paper attempts to tackle issues of causes, opportunities and challenges for peace in Sudan.
Keywords: Sudan; conflicts; civil wars; peace; CPA; referendum; secession; Abyei.
- China's ADIZ: A New Phase of the Pacific Arms Race 12/16/2013
This paper offers an in-depth analysis of the history, status, and implications of the recent air defense identification zone (ADIZ) disputes in Northeast Asia involving China, South Korea, Japan, and the United States. The interests and actions of all parties are considered in light of the larger political and economic trends in the region, as well as the legal basis for claiming an ADIZ. Strategies to re-frame and deescalate the conflict and avoid military confrontation are suggested.
- Causes and catalysts of the civil war in Syria 10/23/2013
The causes and catalysts of the current civil war in Syria are many and varied, including narratives that range across religion, poverty, past repression, and ideology. Understanding why the conflict began is only possible when these causes are considered together as a holistic whole rather than as stand-alone explanations. However, this is not to deny that some causes and catalysts have been more significant than others. Whilst early triumphs of civil society movements in Tunisia and Egypt greatly helped to catalyse opposition to the government in Syria, they only serve to mask the critical and much more important underlying change in the social dynamic created by the ideological drift of the Ba’ath Party. Under Bashar al-Assad’s Presidency, the Ba’ath Party increasingly disengaged and decoupled itself from its original political constituency, creating a broad and deep-seated disillusionment with the government within Syrian society. It is this schism that can be identified as the greatest of the causes of the current conflict.
- Learning from the Past and Looking Towards the Future: The Situation of Child Soldiers in Colombia 09/12/2013
In light of the current peace negotiations between the FARC and Colombian government there is the potential for thousands of children to be demobilized in the upcoming year(s). While this is promising, children have not been adequately included in the peace process so far. This is ominously reminiscent of the 2003 demobilization of the AUC, which led to only a few hundred of potentially thousands of children being formally demobilized, many of whom are believed to have been re-recruited by neo-paramilitary groups and organized criminal gangs. This paper will explore the current situation of children associated with illegal armed groups in Colombia, the challenges facing their reintegration, and the lessons learnt from the failure of the previous demobilization, all with a view towards improving the potential demobilization of child soldiers following a successful peace process between the FARC and Colombian government.
- China’s Oil Security: Diplomacy, Economics and the Prospects for Peaceful Growth 07/24/2013
How does China's pursuit of oil security drive its foreign policy and its participation in world markets? Analysis by Sigfrido Burgos Cáceres.
- Climate Change, Sea Level Rise and Conflict Resolution of South Talpatti/New Moore Island 07/15/2013
What happens when rising sea levels submerge an island at the center of an international territorial dispute? Ishak Mia argues that it may lead to conflict resolution.
- Syria's Civil War: Regional and International Implications 06/25/2013
Jehun Alexander Hong discusses the continued escalation of the Syrian civil war in terms of internal, regional, and international power struggles, in the overlapping sectors of ethnic, religious, political, and economic rivalry. Emphasis is placed on the question of chemical weapons and the high number of child casualties, as well as the impacts of the conflict on neighbouring countries, in terms of displaced persons and wider conflict.
- Northeast India and Southern China: A point of conflict or of regional integration? 04/16/2013
Northeast India is a relatively secluded sub-state region that has of late started acquiring significance at the international level as a potential site of major conflict between China and India, or as a potential bridge between them.
- Ethical Issues in Peacekeeping Operations in Africa 01/18/2013
In this paper, Oluwaseun Bamidele initiates a dialogue on the fundamental issue of ethics in peacekeeping operations in Africa, particularly as it influences the adoption of a professional code of conduct. Theoretical concerns are treated in depth, various criticisms and arguments are raised, and each stage in the process of planning, implementing, and evaluating operations is considered.
- Political transition in Mexico and the growth of corruption and violence 12/05/2012
Recently, Mexico inaugurated a new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, on the 1st December 2012, who promised to boost the economy, and reduce organised crime. The return of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) after a 12 years absence has not been a welcome change for the whole population. Mass protests against Mexico’s new president have been organized, and dozens of protesters have been imprisoned for voicing their opposition.
The presence of the PRI in the Mexican presidency in 2012 is a complex phenomenon, which shows that the consolidation of democracy was incomplete, and the National Action Party, PAN, failed in leading the democratic transition.
In July of 2000, Mexico got a new President, coming from a different Political Party for the first time in 71 years of the ruling PRI. The arrival of the candidate of the PAN, Vicente Fox (2000-2006) to the Presidency marked a new moment in the history of the country. Fox was the result of a long political process, which was known as a Democratic Transition. Many expectations were opened not only in terms of Democratic practices among the political parties, institutions, and entrepreneurs, but also in hope to improve the quality of life of the millions of Mexicans that live in extreme poverty.
However, after a few months of Fox’s government, corruption and violence appeared in different parts of the country. Even, Fox would be involved in many scandals of corruption. Later in 2006, another candidate of the same party arrived to the presidency, Felipe Calderón Hinojosa (2006-July 2012) who also promised to accomplish the project of the Democratic Transition, and a few months after, he launched “the war against drugs”, deploying more than 50,000 troops, and since then more than 47,500 people have been killed. Violence, impunity, abuse of power and corruption in all institutions has flourished around the country: police, army, politicians, teachers and doctors have been connected with corruption and narco-trafficking. In this context, the following questions are raised: Why the change of the political party in power since 2000 did not end corruption, despite the campaigned promises of the National Action Party, PAN? Was it the lack of political will or structural reasons? Why do corruption and violence flourish in a country with more democracy in place? What is wrong with the democratic process that causes the increase of social instability and violence? This article attempts to explore these questions. As well as presenting a general picture of the backlash of the democratic transition with the return of the PRI to the presidency in July 2012 and the challenges of the new Mexican president to achieve a solid democratic consolidation.
- Indigenous Conflict Resolution and Durable Peace in Cyprus 11/05/2012
Cyprus remains deeply divided, despite (or perhaps because of) years of legalistic and nationalistic attempts to resolve the conflict. In this essay, researcher Oluwaseun Bamidele argues that greater emphasis should be put on "indigenous" models of negotiation and reconciliation, common to both Greek and Turkish Cypriots, as well as to a "politics of feelings", in order to breakdown divisive narratives of historic trauma and strengthen the emerging culture of empathy and peace on the island.
- Syria, Iran, and Israel: tensions and potential consequences 10/02/2012
Independent journalist Atkilt Geleta comments on the UNGA speeches made by Ahmadinejad and Netanyahu and offers some analytical insight on the worsening Syrian crisis and the complex geopolitical structure of alliances and interests that surround it.
- Gender Responsive Budgeting Initiative (GRBI) in Pakistan: Needs, Initiatives and Challenges - A Contextual Analysis 08/24/2012
Dr. Shahbaz Israr Khan examines the ways in which gender-neutral approaches to budgeting are highly discriminatory against woman, especially in neoliberal economies and the globalized world context. He concludes that in a highly patriarchal environment, gender neutral budgets, without assessing their implications for women, men, boys and girls, can have a very negative impact on the society and especially on women's lives. The paper presents needs, initiatives and challenges of Gender Budget Initiatives, and also addresses the issues related to the Gender Responsive Budgeting Initiative in Pakistan.
- The relationship between civil society and public institutions in Burundi 06/29/2012
Vital Nshimirimana discusses the relationship between civil society and public institiutions in Burundi.He argues that a permanent tension exists in defining civil society. He suggests that such a tension might be resolved in the light of the definitions adopted by several international organisations of which Burundi is party.Indeed, he assesses the achievement of civil society in Burundi and asserts that what makes it be seen by public institutions as a threat is because it is working and actually committed to defend the common good. Key words : civil society, public institutions,associations,labour unions, synergy, citizenry,media, common good
- Quebec's Season of Discontent 06/06/2012
An increasingly powerful protest movement has taken root in the Canadian province of Quebec. This article discusses its origins, its strategic development, and its potential impact on progressive politics in Canada as a whole.
- The Intersection of Law and Politics: The Case of the United States and the International Criminal Court 05/08/2012
Researcher Mathew Ituma takes us through the story of the United States' tentative support for the International Criminal Court under Clinton and its eventual "unsigning" under Bush, emphasizing the fundamental tension between national (in this case congressional) politics and international justice.
Key words: Rome Statutes, International criminal court, justice, law, politics.
- Addressing Past Violence: The New Brazilian Truth Commission 03/30/2012
Leonard Ghione argues that the Brazilian truth commission has a strong legal mandate to achieve the goal of creating an authoritative historic account of the country’s violent past. Its main challenge will be coping with the limited number of staff and the long period of time it must cover. The goal of national reconciliation in Brazil will require not only the unearthing of the truth but also the unearthing of a conflict that has been systematically negated until now and is part of Brazil’s culture of violence. If the commission succeeds in unearthing this underlying negated conflict, it will increase public pressure against the amnesty law, which may eventually lead to its revocation in the long term, contributing to a less violent society.
- Poverty and Civil War in Sri Lanka 02/27/2012
Aingkaran Kugathasan details the multi-faceted impact of Sri Lanka's decades-long civil conflict on poverty, emphasizing the role of ethnic relations, migration and public policy in addressing socioeconomic challenges in the post-conflict period.
- Paedophiles' Paradise: Child Abuse and Child Prostitution in Sri Lanka 02/20/2012
Analysis of global tourism's role in supporting child sex tourism, with specific emphasis on the case of Sri Lanka, where there are an estimated 30,000 child sex workers.
- We All Look Alike, But We Are Not the Same: The Root Cause of the Conflict in Sri Lanka 01/27/2012
UPeace Asia Leaders Fellow Aingkaran analyzes the conflict in Sri Lanka within the framework of the relationship between political power and modern ethnic identities.
- Rights of Due Process and the Post-Arab Spring: Paradigm Shift from International to Domestic Court Jurisdiction 01/03/2012
Kichere Mwita draws attention to the precedent-setting role of the Arab Spring from an international law perspective. Highlighting the shift from international to domestic court jurisdiction over high-level crimes committed during the Arab Spring uprisings, Mwita argues for the implementation of a sub-international criminal court based on the model of the ad hoc tribunals created for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.
- Operation ‘Degrade Al-Shabaab Capacity’: Kenyan Mission with No Winners, But Losers 11/21/2011
If there is any lesson that the war on terror, now ten years old and counting, has brought to the surface, it is that conventional military is the worst possible tool to fight an insurgent group that coexists with and feeds from a complex crisis. The harder you hit the perceived stronghold with conventional strategies and weapons, the more complex the situation becomes. In this article, Patrick Mugo Mugo asks: what happens when you decide, as the Kenyan government, to go after the tail of Al-Shabaab and not its head? If we can assume that Al-Shabaab is an invisible creature of a complex crisis, what does that tell us about Somalia’s dithering Transitional Federal Government, which the Kenyan incursion purports to help? Why should the Kenyan government, well aware of American experience in Iraq and Afghanistan, invade Somalia following the same script without even editing or rephrasing it? Even if the Kenyan military succeeds in ‘degrading Al-Shabaab capacity’, who will fill the void created in southern Somalia? But before all that, is it Al-Shabaab that is the problem, or is it the analyses that have come forth since al-Shabaab became credible threat?
- The Criminality of Nuclear Weapons and Nuclear Energy: From Hiroshima to Fukushima 10/05/2011
Key Terms: International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms (IALANA), public health, crimes against humanity, nuclear energy, weapons of mass destruction, International Atomic Energy Agency, abolition, phaseout, International Law, peace, security.
- Conflict, Climate Change, and Water Security in Sub-Saharan Africa 09/01/2011
The paper is a review of literatures on conflict, climate change and water security on Sub-Saharan Africa. It identifies poverty as a threat in Sub-Saharan African countries that may have effect on its water security. It analyses in Sub-Saharan Africa region, the conflict trend of water security in correlation with climate change impacts. It advocates sustainable water management as the ameliorative and mitigation approaches to the negative effects of climate change on water security in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Keywords: Climate change, water security, Sub-Saharan Africa, poverty and water management.
- Climate Change and Socio-Economic Development in Africa 08/06/2011
The paper traces the predicament of climate change in Africa from the industrial era, through the 1950’s when African nations started regaining freedom from their colonial masters, to the present day of persistent socio-economic underdevelopment. It compares the greenhouse gases generated in Africa to the rest of the world and identifies through literatures the expected impacts of climate change in Africa.
Keywords: Climate change, Africa nations, impacts, poverty and socio-economic development.
- Arabic Awakening: Human Dignity and Democracy in Question 07/01/2011
A new order is taking shape from North Africa to the Middle East; but as the dust settles down, will the quest for human dignity and democracy continue? Patrick Mugo Mugo analyzes what kind of governance system will win the hearts and minds of millions of the Arabic people: a Western based concept, or Turkish, Korean, Bangladesh or Indonesian models?
- 'Miracle on the Han River' Evaluated with the Perspective of Amartya Sen: The Development Case of South Korea 06/01/2011
Hansoal Park analyzes South Korea's historical post-war economic development process, known as the 'Miracle on the Han River'. Shedding light on widespread abuse of labour rights as the means toward economic growth under the 18-year dictatorship of Park Chung Hee, she raises the controversial question of whether human rights repression is helpful for achieving rapid development. Comparing South Korea's experience with Amartya Sen's emphasis on 'Development as Freedom', Park concludes that "human rights should never be disregarded for the longevity of an authoritarian regime that justifies its actions for the sake of rapid development."
- Corporative Governance: United Nations Peace Mission for Congo (MONUC) and the Forces Armée de la République Démocratique du Congo (FARDC) 05/10/2011
Mukenge assesses the corporative governance relationship between UN peacekeeping forces and the DRC's national armed forces, providing an analysis of challenges, successes and failures, pointing to the corruption and inherent inefficiences of UN peacekeeping operations.
- Church/State Relations in Multi-Sector Development 04/25/2011
Paper Presented by Gale Mohammed-Oxley on the theme of Education in a Multi-Cultural Society: Challenges and Opportunities, as part of the Trinidad and Tobago Education Conference 2011: Maximizing the Role of Education in a Changing Society.
- Conflict Analysis and Resolution: Socio-cultural and Intrapersonal Perspectives 03/11/2011
Much of the literature on peace building and conflict transformation focuses on socio-economic analyses, while relatively little research addresses the psychological causes and impacts of violence and insecurity. This paper seeks to refine existing models of conflict analysis through the explicit inclusion of psychological and cultural perspectives in order to better identify the core interests of parties to conflict, and to understand the mechanisms through which conflicts are produced, protracted, and, ultimately, resolved.
- New Year, Old Conflicts: Nuclear crises in 2011 and their implications for US-China relations 01/02/2011
Rob van Riet follows three conflicts with nuclear potential -- rising tensions on the Korean peninsula, continued animosity between the US and Iran, and the persistent India-Pakistan dispute -- set against the backdrop of shifting Sino-American relations. While each of these conflicts has a potential to undermine efforts toward international security, and may trigger war on a nuclear scale, van Riet argues, much will depend on the willingness and ability of US and Chinese leaders to work together towards their resolution.
- Winning the Locals in the Decision-making on Mining Projects: Advocacy Campaigns in Rapu-Rapu Island, Philippines 12/03/2010
In the early 2000s, mining companies and environmental groups launched competing advocacy campaigns to sway local opinion on the commencement of mining operations on Rapu-Rapu Island in the Philippines. Ultimately, pro-mining advocacy was more effective, and the local people and environment were subjected to tailings spillage and other damages in subsequent years. Menandro S. Abanes draws lessons from this experience and reflects on the role of local people in environmental management.
- Military Intervention and the Return of Absolute Monarchy: an Impediment to Political Security in Thailand 11/01/2010
Thailand is encountering the problematic situation of military intervention and the return of absolute monarchy. Those incidents violate human security, particularly, political security.
- The Bougainville conflict: A classic outcome of the resource-curse effect? 10/07/2010
Pre-existing ethnic and economic divisions between Bougainville and the rest of Papua New Guinea and the mismanagement of the copper wealth of the Panguna Mine exacerbated existing tensions and provided radical Bougainvilleans an excuse to legitimise the pursuit of violence as a means to resolve their grievances.
This article examines the causes of the Bougainville conflict in Papua New Guinea from 1988 -1997, specifically investigating the role of the resource curse (as propounded by Collier) and briefly discusses implications for democracy and future development on the island.
The article finds that not one single factor should be isolated as a sole cause of the conflict but that there is a series of predominant causes which can trace their roots directly to the Panguna Mine. Pan-Bougainvillean ethnicity should not be discounted as an important factor but should be seen as an external projection of economic and inter-ethnic grievances.
- Regionalism and Reconciliation: A Comparison of the French-German and Chinese-Japanese Model 09/02/2010
Dr. Gao Lan, Director of Northeast Asian Studies Centre at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, examines the prospects for, and possible pathways to, reconciliation between China and Japan and for the creation of an East Asian Community via a comparison with Germany and France’s post-WWII reconciliation and the development of the European Union. Lan identifies cultural, economic, and historical similarities and differences between China-Japan relations and the successful Germany-France model, illuminating factors that may ultimately facilitate and/or impede reconciliation and regional integration.
- MAINTAINING PEACE IN ASIA: INDIA-JAPAN RELATIONS 07/01/2010
Rupak Borah traces the modern history of Indian relations with Japan, which have sometimes diverged over issues of nuclear testing and relations with China, but maintain a strong foundation of shared security and economic issues. Borah argues that Japan and India are "natural allies" in Asia, and that continued improvements in their international relationship have the potential to enhance the peace and prosperity of the entire region.
- From Conventional Peacebuilding Paradigms in Post-Conflict Settings and Reconstruction to Systemic Multi-Foci Approaches: The Case of Somaliland 06/01/2010
Building on the work of Dr Victoria Fontan and others, Muhyadin Saed challenges conventional methods of peacebuilding, with specific reference to the experiences of Somaliland. Saed proposes a human-centred, rather than institutional, approach which considers the local people to be vital assets in the design and implementation of such projects. In order to achieve sustainable peace, Saed argues, the local people must be actively involved and considered to be more than recipients of outside assistance.
- Mutiny and Media in Bangladesh 05/03/2010
Suriya Urmi analyzes the 2009 mutiny of Bangladeshi border guards (BDR) against army officers. This article specifically focuses on the media´s role, as BDR soldiers successfully deceived public opinion before the atrocities were discovered.
- CONFLICT RESOLUTION IN ASSAM: IS ENDGAME NIGH? 04/05/2010
Rupakjyoti Borah reviews the conflict in Assam, India in light of recent developments including the arrest of ULFA commanders. Although peace talks and other attempts to resolve the conflict have been less than successful in recent years, Borah reports that there is renewed optimism for peace in the region, provided that Assam's burning issues are addressed and political leaders are willing to negotiate.
- The Dialectic of Islam: an historiographical interpretation of Islamist political violence 03/05/2010
This paper aims to analyze the debate over political violence in contemporary Islam from the viewpoint of its historical roots. At the heart of the matter are two currents that have existed in the Muslim community since its very beginning: a dialectic between the intellectual and the martial, and competing interpretations of an idyllic patristic era, with several practical and ideological consequences. This paper will demonstrate how today's debate can be framed within this vision of Islamic history.
- RESPONSIBLE GOVERNANCE: A PANACEA TO CONFLICT IN NIGER DELTA 02/02/2010
The Niger Delta region of Nigeria has become known for spates of violence and conflict that have eluded attempts at peaceful resolution. This paper traces the crisis in relation to the current attributes of the region and advocates for responsible governance, which embraces corporate social responsibility, along with trustworthy national and state governance as panaceas to the entrenched cycles of violence and conflict in the Niger delta region.
- Violent Conflict in India: Issues of Contention 01/07/2010
Most of the developing societies are facing the problem of complex violent conflict. India is not an exception, although the political set up of the country is based on freedom of choice. Presently, three major constituencies – Jammu and Kashmir, Northeastern India and Eastern and Central India – are facing a major armed conflict predicament. The armed protesters of these regions have different goals, and their issues of contention are different. The armed rebels of Jammu and Kashmir seek secession from Indian sovereignty; the Northeastern dissidents seek more autonomy in governance; and the Maoist groups of Eastern and Central India are contesting for the transformation of the Indian political system into the totalitarian regime. The aim of the paper is to examine the nature of the violent conflict which persists in various parts of India.
Key Words: Violent Conflict, Armed Conflict, Maoist Conflict in India, Sub national movement in India.
- The Need for Security Sector Reform in Afghanistan to Curb Corruption 11/04/2009
This paper, on the basis of available literature and organizations’ experiences, aims to evaluate and analyze the institutional limitations and weaknesses of the police and judicial sector of Afghanistan’s security sector.
Understanding the trends and inadequate practices in the services delivery systems of the Afghan security sector will set the stage for possible policy recommendations to enhance the effectiveness of the sector and curb corruption. Subsequently, identification of effective and feasible policy recommendations to enhance the performance of the Afghan police and judicial sector will enable other service delivery institutions to resourcefully implement development initiatives.
- World Peace through Law: Rethinking an Old Theory 10/13/2009
James Ranney discusses the potential of law to bring about world peace, without submitting the world to a "global government" as such, but through the creation of a UN Peace Force to enforce the decisions of global courts, promote the abolition of nuclear arms, and generally create an atmosphere of global "justice" so that peace may prevail.
- Prospects for Peace in the East of the Democratic Republic of Congo 09/07/2009
Bulelwa Mukenge considers the failures of various peace initiatives in the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Mukenge suggests cooperative dialogue between the Rwandan Government and the Front Democratic for Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) in order to solve this long-lasting conflict. Since 1994, these peace talks have yet to succeed; preventing a peaceful solution to the prevailing war.
- International Law and the War in Gaza: from fog of war to fog of law 08/03/2009
The Gaza War (December 2008 - January 2009) left 1,166 to 1,417 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead. Professor Juan Amaya Castro discusses the conflict with reference to sources of international law.
- Environmental Security and Urban Development 07/16/2009
THE NEXUS BETWEEN DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS AND CONFLICTS: THE CASE OF THE PROPOSED OGU ENERGY CITY PROJECT. BEING A PAPER PRESENTED BY COMMANDER AH OFORIBO ON THE OCASSION MARKING THE SILVER JUBILEE OF THE LIBERATION CLUB OF OGU ON 11 APRIL 2009 AT ST MARTINS ANGLICAN CHURCH YARD MAIN HALL OGU
- International Cooperation to Control the Intergovernmental Small Arms Trade: Case Study China-Sudan 06/02/2009
After outlining the deadly scope of today’s small arms trade, this paper touches on questions of international law and responsibility, or lack thereof, as illustrated by the legal intergovernmental transfer of arms from China to the Sudan, despite international pressure urging the contrary. References include United Nations documents, task force and international NGO campaign reports, contemporary media coverage and University for Peace lecture discussions.
- The real roots of the 2007-2009 economic crisis: questions and answers 05/04/2009
Simon Stander discusses the real roots of the 2007-2009 economic crisis with questions and answers and with help, sometimes but not always, from Karl Marx. As is occasionally said Marx is good for analysis but not always for prediction. Simon Stander, formerly professor of Peace Studies (and founding editor of the Peace and Conflict Monitor) at UPEACE seems to agree.
- Genocide in Rwanda: Draft Case Study for Teaching Ethics and International Affairs 04/01/2009
This case aims to use the genocide of 1994 in Rwanda to help students appreciate what may be the roots and common causes of genocides. It is written in the suspicion that there may be some sort of "recipe" that can be followed by political elites bent on the extermination of a group. This article was originally published on www.ciaonet.org.
- El Salvador's Election as Conflict Transformation 03/20/2009
The victory of a representative of the former guerrilla FMLN movement in El Salvador’s presidential election - the culmination of a process that began with the peace accords in 1992 - is an exemplary case of conflict transformation, says Victor Valle.
This article is cross-posted with the online magazine Open Democracy www.opendemocracy.net
- Comfort Women and the Failure of International Law 03/11/2009
Seong Eun Lee discusses the failure of international law to hold states responsible for their use of women as sexual slaves during the Pacific War. The history of international treaties and regulations outlawing such behaviour are briefly reviewed, as is the current state of the former comfort women's struggle for justice. The author argues that interlocking structures of oppression based on power imbalances of gender and ethnicity have continued to frustrate this struggle in the arena of international law.
Key words: Korea, Japan, comfort women, international law, development, South Asia, World War II, gender, peace and conflict, ethnicity, sexual slavery, justice.
- Trauma-Sensitive Peace-Building: Lessons for Theory and Practice 02/20/2009
Over the past several decades, peace-building and trauma studies have emerged as interdisciplinary fields that seek to better understand their respective social phenomena and develop appropriate responses. Practitioners of peace-building often work in severely conflicted settings with groups that have been exposed to traumatic events, while a number of trauma professionals interact with individuals and groups from conflicted regions. Despite increased cooperation based on the work of scholars and practitioners who have begun to explore the intersection between peace-building and trauma, significant challenges remain, particularly concerning how peacebuilders can make their work more trauma sensitive. This article provides a brief overview of the fields of trauma studies and peace-building, highlights connections between the two areas, reviews recent literature, and discusses the concept of trauma-sensitive peace-building and several challenges of conducting practice in this area.
This article is extracted from Zelizer, C. (2008) Trauma-Sensitive Peace-Building: Lessons for Theory and Practice. Africa Peace and Conflict Journal 1 (1), p. 81-94.
To access the full journal, please contact email@example.com
- Mediators Beyond Borders: Pathways to Peace and Reconciliation 01/16/2009
In this timely article, Kenneth Cloke reflects on the potential of mediation to inspire conflict transformation and social development in times of interpersonal as well as international crisis.
Technical aspects of mediation are also discussed, as Cloke draws from his considerable experience in the field, offering practical and accessible advice for the promotion of cooperation and coexistence in our own lives and beyond all borders.
- Politics of the Absurd: Sarah Palin and the mindset for war 12/02/2008
Pandora Hopkins reflects on the adsurdity of the 2008 US elections, offering some insight into the archetypal "warrior" and "clanmom" figures of John McCain and Sarah Palin. Hopkins writes: "My hope is that, by using a folkloric perspective—by examining the tales told by and about Sarah Palin and John McCain (stock figures in this drama)--we can begin to find ways to promote the hope that Obama has inspired—and the satirical energy that Sarah Palin engendered."
- Getting Away With Murder: The Khmer Rouge Tribunal 11/11/2008
After 30 years, a tribunal has finally been established to bring some of those responsible for the Khmer Rouge attrocities to justice. As Sopheada Phy demonstrates, however, the limited scope and poor design of this tribunal will ensure that the justice served will be superficial at best, as many of those, both inside and outside of Cambodia, who supported and sustained the brutal rule of the Khmer Rouge, will not be called to account for their crimes.
- The creation of Iraq's food insecurity 1980-2008 10/10/2008
The fertile lands between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, and the wheat planes just south of Basra were, until the 1980s, the base of a robust agricultural sector in modern Iraq. This essay traces the steady and tragic decline of the Iraqi food system over the last 3 decades, emphasizing the political and economic policies of the US, Turkey, the former Baathist regime in Iraq, and the UN.
Key words: food security, environmental security, gulf war, Iran-Iraq war, Kuwait, Turkey, Oil-for-Food, sanctions, UN, agriculture, ethnic conflict.
- Assessing the Georgian conflict 08/29/2008
Richard Falk discusses the recent violence in Georgia in light of the geopolitical context, involving NATO, Russia, the EU, and the US.
- Cambodia's untreated wound 08/12/2008
The Khmer Rouge regime and its genocidal aftermath have left a psychological legacy that has crippled the development of Cambodia. The Khmer Rouge regime collapsed almost three decades ago; however, the lack of a healing process for the victims of the trauma, the erosion of trust initiated by the regime, and the delayed establishment of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal and the public distrust in the hybrid court, have still trapped the victims in the past trauma, which prevents them from letting go of their past traumatic experiences to fully contribute to the development of Cambodia.
- There are two Pakistans 07/18/2008
Mullick discusses the split personality in Pakistan, enveloping both the military state and the nascent democracy, and argues that the tension between the two has been a source of socio-economic and security problems, and an impediment to progress. Unity and reconciliation, argues Mullick, is the calling of Pakistan's next generation of leaders.
- Doublethink and Dictatorship: The Legitimacy of the State in Burma/Myanmar 06/04/2008
The immesurable tragedy that unfolded in Myanmar last month is a sobering reminder of the extent to which poor governance can multiply human suffering in the aftermath of a natural disaster. The Burmese military government's delay of humanitarian assistance and hostile attitude towards the international community undoubtedly increased the death toll of the cyclone, and stands out as another black mark on the regime's claims to legitimacy.
As Hamish Low describes, even before their deadly mismanagement of the cyclone, the Burmese Junta's illegitimacy was patently clear.
Whatever the Party holds to be the truth, is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the Party.
If one is to rule, and to continue ruling, one must be able to dislocate the sense of reality. - from 1984 by George Orwell
- China's Death Grip on Tibet 05/01/2008
Recent unrest in Tibet and the protests which followed the Olympic Torch relay around the world have attracted a new level of international attention to the long standing struggle between Tibet and China. Scott Lowe gives some insight into the history of this struggle and addresses the question that baffles so many in the West - why the PRC is so unwilling to consider Tibetan independence.
- Pacifism Post 9/11 04/01/2008
Amardo Rodriguez discusses the charge, raised in many mainstream media sources in the United States, that pacifism cannot be defended in the post 9/11 world. A new framework for communication is suggested - an ecology of communication - so as to broaden the scope of possibility amd allow for a deeper understanding of violent conflict.
- The Consequences of Failure 02/12/2008
Kenya’s choices are simple: life or death, penury or prosperity, a cohesive, well governed nation that counts its diversity as strength or a suspicious, hateful one governed by the cynical and awash in the blood of its young. The leaders too must now decide whether they will be remembered as the men who destroyed a nation or those who rescued it and set it on a glorious path that will be remembered for generations.
- No Nukes, No Proliferation 01/04/2008
Nuclear weapons could not proliferate if they did not exist. Because they do, they will. The policy implication of this logic is that the best guarantee of nuclear nonproliferation is nuclear disarmament through a nuclear weapons convention that bans the possession, acquisition, testing and use of nuclear weapons, by everyone. This would solve the problem of nonproliferation as well as disarmament. The focus on nonproliferation to the neglect of disarmament ensures that we get neither. If we want nonproliferation, therefore, we must prepare for disarmament.
- Battling against Religious Extremism: The State of Madrassah Reforms in Pakistan 12/04/2007
It is ironic that in the centralized education system of Pakistan, there are educational institutions with different curricula. This results from the existence of three main educational systems; public, private and madrassahs. The private system is expensive and out of the reach of majority of children in Pakistan. Therefore, public schools and madrassahs provide education to most Pakistani children, where some students are exposed to Islamic fundamentalism. While there was a shift in media and governmental policies towards Pakistani madrassahs after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the USA, it seems as though international interest in madrassah reforms in Pakistan has faded away recently, even though this issue still exists in all its severity as has been clearly illustrated by recent radical and furious actions from the Islamabad-based madrassahs.
- Barriers to Peace: Assessing Separation Barriers’ Legality and their Implications for Peace Processes 11/01/2007
- China and Bhutan: Crushing Dissent 07/05/2007
- A Tale of Nationalism and Dissidence 06/07/2007
Cultural disconnect is at the heart of Cameroon's political incongruity. Split in two, the government falls in the hands of the Francophones, natural resources in the hands of the Anglophones. Marcel Fomotar analyzes the tension...
- France: Another Political Thatcher is Born 05/15/2007
- Trans-national Organized Crime: Identifying and Tackling a Growing Threat 04/17/2007
Organized crime transcends state boundaries and finds its niche in transnational markets. Despite international sponsored programmes to better quell the expansion of illicit trade, small arms, narcotics, as well as people continue being trafficked. Hugh Griffiths provides an inside look at the flow of illegal trafficking.
- Xenophobia Towards Migrants: Realities of Contemporary Russia 03/23/2007
‘Xenophobia Towards Migrants: Realities of Contemporary Russia’ is devoted to a problem which has not yet been well researched in Russia: the suspicious and sometimes openly negative attitude of Russians towards migrants. The text puts forward the results of sociological research in support of this judgement, attempts to find a solution to this ever more complicated situation, and looks at analogies with European countries.
- Who Will Save Darfur 02/16/2007
Genocide in Darfur is stuck between international bureaucracy and lethargic, discriminate Sudanese politics. Pkalya probes Western states, special interests, and humanitarian aide initiatives, while we sit and wait to see who will save Darfur.
- A Small Thorn in the EU's Side 01/30/2007
- Ecuador: Protest and Power 11/29/2006
An additional tally for the Left. Correa, a young economist endorsed by Venezuela’s Chavez, won the run-off elections in Ecuador 26 November 2006. Although he’ll will swear-in with little or no dispute over the election results, Ecuador’s presidency can appropriately be compared to the unkept roads that clamber through the Andes. Guy Hedgecoe analyzes the bumpy boulevard and shift to the left ahead.
- Human Security and the Problem of Jungle (Mob) Justice in Cameroon 10/27/2006
Cameroon is renowned for its relative stability and is often referred to as an island of peace in a continent characterised by a multiplicity of violent conflicts. Of course, one normally would expect such a country to be Africa’s success story in matters of human security. Unfortunately, jungle (mob) justice, which has taken unprecedented heights within the past decade or more, constitutes one of the greatest threats to human security and the rule of law in Cameroon. How then can a country that seems to enjoy such stability have such a dismal human security record? This paper examines the phenomenon and argues that the weakness and failure of the state in ensuring the citizens’ security is largely to blame.
- Cameroon's Culture Challenge 09/28/2006
- Is Independence the Answer for S. Cameroons? 08/23/2006
Southern Cameroons nationalists continue with their efforts in an attempt to secure a sovereign state, despite the daunting reality of human rights abuse and unprovoked killings that haunt communities living in the threatened region of the country. Without declared charges against them, victims continue to be held in prisons for extended periods of time. Although the case for Southern Cameroons renders in the eye of the international community, still no accord has been made to quell contention between the peoples.
- How Privatized is War? 07/12/2006
Some security analysts believe that the private sector is so firmly embedded in combat and occupation that the phenomenon may have reached the point of no return. The U.S. army estimates that of the $87 billion earmarked in the year 2003 for the broader Iraqi campaigns including Central Asia and Afghanistan, one third has been spent on contracts to private companies. Pujya Pascal discusses corporate adventurism in the context of the latest concerns relating to Private Military Companies.
- The Rise of Al Jazeera 06/06/2006
Al Jazeera is likely the most controversial media phenomenon of the last few decades. But say what you will about the goodness or badness of it, its effect is undeniable. Al Jazeera has done what no other media before it could: bring all Arabs together, under one umbrella, to speak their minds.
- Culture, Conflict, and Death 05/23/2006
According to new theorizing in social psychology, the main function of culture is to alleviate anxiety caused by the awareness of our eventual death. In this framework, culture and religion offer answers to the meaning of life in the face of our mortality. Faith in ones own cultural world-view provides protection from the fear of death. If people feel that their religion or other cultural world-views are threatened by other religions or conceptions of culture they can be mobilized and seem to be ready to fight or even die for their beliefs.
- Thinking the Unthinkable 05/01/2006
The United States' own policies toward terrorism and Israel have caused more trouble than they have fixed. The tighter the grasp on influence in the Middle East, the more erratic - and dangerous - have been the reactions. Might it be time now to consider an unmentionable alternative?
- Stand By Your Man 04/05/2006
American war movies have a tendency to slip themselves into time-honored gender role clichés - women as comforters, women as patriots, women as whores. In doing this, they not only ignore the rich and varied roles that women have played in times of conflict, but they reinforce certain stereotypes that are best either broken down or left out. In some cases, lessons can be drawn from examples of African film and literature.
- The Logic of the Coup 03/15/2006
- Nepal: Withering Peace 02/01/2006
- Violence Against Women: The Case of the Philippines 12/15/2005
- Cuban-European NGO Collaboration: The 'Special Period' 12/01/2005
- Structural Violence and the International Political Economy 11/17/2005
- Afghanistan Beyond Bonn: Keep the Champagne Corked 11/03/2005
Recent elections in Afghanistan went off without a hitch, but the country - currently with a development ranking of 172 out of 178 - is still very much in the woods. The crime rate is high and poppy cultivation is on the rise. Insurgency violence is growing as well, with 50 US soldiers killed in the first half of 2005, compared to 60 soldiers killed in the first three years following the 2001 invasion. Even as the newness of the Afghan mission fades, the international community should dig in: There've a long way to go yet.
- The Mizrahi-Palestinian Connection, Part III 10/24/2005
Scholarly analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has depicted it as a conflict between two homogenous entities, namely Israel and the Palestinians. However, scholars largely ignore the impact of the "inner-Israeli" conflict between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim on the "external" conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. Not only are the Mizrahim excluded from the peace process itself, but academics also fail to research the role they play in the conflict, while their occasional public role is that of extremely right-wing "Arab-haters" who prevent the Ashkenazi-dominated "liberal peace camp" from reaching a solution– hence they are portrayed as an obstacle to peace.
- The Mizrahi-Palestinian Connection, Part II 09/16/2005
Scholarly analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has depicted it as a conflict between two homogenous entities, namely Israel and the Palestinians. However, scholars largely ignore the impact of the "inner-Israeli" conflict between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim on the "external" conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. Not only are the Mizrahim excluded from the peace process itself, but academics also fail to research the role they play in the conflict, while their occasional public role is that of extremely right-wing "Arab-haters" who prevent the Ashkenazi-dominated "liberal peace camp" from reaching a solution– hence they are portrayed as an obstacle to peace. Part II of a three-part series. Part I
- The Mizrahi - Palestinian Connection, Part I 08/18/2005
Scholarly analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has depicted it as a conflict between two homogenous entities, namely Israel and the Palestinians. However, scholars largely ignore the impact of the "inner-Israeli" conflict between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim on the "external" conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. Not only are the Mizrahim excluded from the peace process itself, but academics also fail to research the role they play in the conflict, while their occasional public role is that of extremely right-wing "Arab-haters" who prevent the Ashkenazi-dominated "liberal peace camp" from reaching a solution– hence they are portrayed as an obstacle to peace .
- Is war bad for business? 07/12/2005
A scholarly debate has raged over the relationship between capitalism and conflict. Some contend that capitalists act as imperialists to make money from the business of war and open up markets abroad to be dominated. Others find that war is bad for business, leading to reduced profits and greater government control over the economy. These arguments are tested using data on economic freedom and conflict. Results indicate that while some economically free countries engage in internal and external conflict, these tend to be less severe in nature and less likely to occur than cases involving economically unfree countries.
- Universal relativism (or vice versa?) 06/14/2005
The current discussion on the definition of human rights splits into two basic camps: the universalist, whose approach is to punish violators legally according to a predetermined set of principles; and the relativist, whose approach shies away from judgment and tries to work from within cultures to stop violations before they can happen. Both extremes, however, are “intrinsically flawed” – common ground exists, and a middle way should be sought.
- Regional Integration and Peace 05/09/2005
Visiting University for Peace professor Philippe De Lombaerde gives an overview of regional economic theory and its causal relationship to regional security.
- Fire, Water, Earth: The Kashmir region 04/14/2005
The India-Pakistan conflict has seen much progress toward resolution in the last years, with bilateral cricket matches taking place and buses now passing to the Kashmir region. Yet tension in the form of arms shopping and multiple missile tests still persists. Through analyzing the three aspects of the conflict – fire, water, and earth – Semu Bhatt proposes some tentative solutions.
- Iran and the Centrality of the IAEA 03/15/2005
Everyone has concerns about Iran's burgeoning nuclear capabilities, but are we working together? The EU-3 encourages cooperation using "carrots," little rewards like equipment and technology. The US, on the other hand, seems to be working at cross purposes by using military threats, threats that could prove counter productive and encourage Iran to produce nuclear weapons for its own protection.
The conflicting approaches underscore the need for a central agency like the IAEA to monitor Iran and provide full reports. Such authority should not be undermined.
- Religions and War 02/23/2005
The study of religions and war is somewhat inchoate, yet for many years scholars have noted the important role religion plays in national, ethnic and international conflicts. Many have recently pointed to the use and abuse of religious symbolism by politically motivated leaders who employ religious language as a means of generating support for purportedly righteous causes.
We have become increasingly aware that when conflicts are couched in religious and moral language, followers often quickly and enthusiastically fall in line many willing to make ultimate sacrifices to fight on God s behalf, or at least on God s side as defined by their leaders.
Whether such political leaders are sincere in espousing religiously-imbued rhetoric or whether they are simple demagogues, the approach clearly works. It works to a great extent because it seems that many people, no matter what their political leanings, prefer to reduce complex socio-economic, or political conflicts into a zero-sum values game of right and wrong.
- Palestinian Suicide Bombers Revisited 01/18/2005
A fundamental question has dominated the study of terrorism and suicide attacks. After the September 11 attacks, scholars have primarily relied on themes from neoclassical economics to develop theoretical and empirical models of terrorism. Suicide attackers and terrorist were seen as optimizing agents. But this innovative approach failed to deliver and obscured more than it illuminated. It failed to yield meaningful predictions and practical policy implications. This paper considers the merits of this approach and surveys evidence gathered from the biographical sketches of 50 Palestinian suicide attackers.
- Kyoto Bites 12/08/2004
In the seven years since the Kyoto Conference the scientific debate over the reality of global warming has been largely settled. Yet the effectiveness of the treaty that has been rejected by the U.S, and which excludes the worlds fast growing developing economies remains widely questioned. Kyoto’s leading critic, the U.S Government, recently admitted that global warming is taking place and that this is a result of human activity.
- A Kashmiri Pandora's Box 11/16/2004
Speaking at an Iftar party (the supper to break fast during the holy month of Ramadan) last week, Pakistan’s ruler Gen. Parvez Musharraf opened a Pandora’s box. He suggested that India and Pakistan should consider the option of identifying ‘’some regions’’ of Kashmir on both sides of the Line of Control, demilitarise them and grant them the status of independence or joint control under the United Nations.
The suggestion left many shocked....
- Central Asia: A Question of Identity 10/19/2004
Muzaffar Suleymanov explores the uses and abuses of history teaching in two Central Asian Republics. Tamurlane and the mythical figure of Manas are being used, it is argued, in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, to help build nation states regardless of the real histories of the region.
- The UN is the Answer for Nepal 09/20/2004
UN peace facilitators could help the Nepalese to draw up a viable compromise, perhaps engaging the parties and the civil society in “constitution making” as itself a part of the process of conflict transformation.They could help overcome the problems of mutual distrust, and ensure transparency and compliance with the code of conduct. UN resident coordinator in Nepal, Matthgew Kahane, has said that UN help could build trust in both sides to facilitate the resumption of the peace negotiations. Unfortunately, the government of Nepal can veto UN mediation because the UN can only intervene if it has the consent of all parties.
- The Horn of Africa: Prospects for Peace 05/20/2004
The Horn of Africa, comprised of Somalia, the Sudan, Djibouti, Eritrea and Ethiopia, is one of the worst affected regions by prolonged interstate and intrastate conflicts. Besides the crippling conflicts inside their borders, those countries have become very active in destroying each other. Conflict, hunger, destruction and displacement have become words normally used to describe this part of the continent. One might wonder why they are so often tangling with conflicts. In particular, one might be inclined to believe that the prolonged wars have shaped the society’s behaviour to be conflict prone.
- Security Concerns in Georgia 05/05/2004
The BBC reports (May 5, 2004) that the "Georgian leader Mikhail Saakashvili has imposed direct presidential rule in the rebel region of Ajaria. The moves came amid growing pressure on Ajaria's leader Aslan Abashidze to accept Tbilisi's authority or resign. The Georgian government has warned Aslan Abashidze that he has only a few hours to step down and avoid bloodshed." We offer Vahagn Muradyan's article on the problems of identity in Georgia in explaining its Security Policies.
- Evangelicals Invade Iraq 03/26/2004
- Driving Deterioration 03/18/2004
The author asks the reader to consider how the car in the last 100 years has been responsible for turning an area of natural landscape in the U.S. the size of Ohio, Indiana, and Pennsylvania into concrete or asphalt. To consider that it has been directly responsible for injuring 250 million, nearly equivalent to the current population of the U.S., and killing more than have died in all the wars in which the country has fought. To consider that the widespread use of this same contraption burns 8 million barrels of oil daily, making the U.S. increasingly dependent on and entangled with a severely unstable world region. To consider that it kills one million wild animals every week. The automobile continues to be responsible for myriad negative effects that, when assessed rationally, far outweigh the benefits. And the rest of the world is close behind…..
- Uganda Needs its Human Rights Commission! 02/19/2004
Some elements of the Ugandan Government want to abolish the Human Rights Commission. The Commission, argues Ferdinand Katendeko, is vital for the health of the Ugandan Decomracy.
- Greed or Grievance in Colombia 02/09/2004
Katharina Röhl analyses the driving forces behind the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in their continuing fight in an ever more violent armed conflict that has now lasted over four decades. While grievances certainly have been important, increasingly greed plays its part which in turn leads to new grievances.
- The Japanese Constitution as Peace System 01/26/2004
The wars in Asia would seem to demand that certain European countries, the U.S., and Japan all re-examine the value systems that presumably provided the justification for those wars. Many situations of "instability" in this century were actually based on the preconceptions and deeds of the nations that applied that label. Now as ever, if a country has reason to be opposed to something, it will typically display a tendency to assume that other countries are engaged in strategic designs or acting from an adversarial position.
- The business of war 12/15/2003
Saddam was captured by regular troops. However, underlying the tactical and strategic operations in Iraq, has been and is an emerging new generation of US military tactics that relies increasingly on sophisticated information and communication technologies, which are not only developed and produced by the civilian industry, but can in fact only be maintained and operated by civilian experts.
- The Politics and Marketing of Transition : Macedonian Parliamentary Elections 2002 11/24/2003
JULIJANA MLADENOVSKA analyses the Macedonian elections of 2002, and concludes that few parties went to the people with concrete messages. It would be better for the parties in Macedonia to attempt to meet the real needs of the voters. The Macedonian citizen, regardless of his ethnic background and his/her fears related to the violent conflicts and an uncertain future, is growing to be a serious critic of the groups and individuals leading Macedonian political life. It is time for a more responsible and honest political leadership.
- Crying out loud for the children 11/24/2003
Catherine Onekalit ask's the question can von-violent methods help to end the war that has lasted seventeen years in northern Uganda destroying the lives of thousands of children and young people. She notes that progress has been slow but that is no excuse for stopping. Quite the opposite, and one way of moving forward is to shout as loudly as possible. The Peace and Conflict Monitor is helping. Join in the cacophony.
- Where do ideas come from? An Intellectual History of the United Nations 11/04/2003
As lifelong participants and observers of multilateral development work and diplomacy, it struck Dr.Emmerij and his collaborators for some time that the UN story deserves to be better documented if it is to be better understood and appreciated. This article examines the importance of the history of ideas in relation to the United Nations, its formation and its major contribution to world peace and well-being.
- Iraq and the "Benefits" of Liberalism 10/20/2003
Corporate America is now mobilizing itself to do its part for operation Iraqi freedom, having been assured by the US government that its role in Iraq is as vital to the Bush administration's vision for Iraq as the military's.
George Bush has said that he envisions a 'US-Middle East free trade area' within 10 years, 'replacing corruption and self dealing with free markets'.
- Sudan's 50 Year War 09/29/2003
Ferdinand Katendeko looks at the underpinnings of the conflict in Sudan, which has taken over four and half million lives, and asks what changes of attitude amongst the combatants are necessary for peace to take root in this conflict.
- You can't make a deal with the dead 09/16/2003
You cannot negotiate with dead men. MI6 and, eventually, the British government recognised that a political struggle requires a political solution. However brutal the IRA's day-to-day terrorism, a strong, coherent republican leadership was in the strategic interest of the British state.
That fundamental insight still appears to be lacking in the Middle East conflict. If a peace process is serious, each side must accept the other as they find it rather than remould their enemies into a more compliant state by assassination and political diktat.
- Complexities 08/25/2003
Your average CNN-watching American may be able to report the latest on soldiers killed or Iraqis successfully “found, killed or captured,” but you’d be hard pressed to find an average American who could tell you how the scene is really unfolding. How complex is the situation?
- Talking Peace for North Korea 08/12/2003
The announcement last week that China, Japan, North and South Korea, Russia and the United States will meet within one month for multilateral talks on the North Korea issue has been greeted worldwide with unbridled optimism ('A Welcome First Step on the Path to Korean Peace', South China Morning Post, 2 August, 2003). A military solution has largely been ignored or downplayed, with the exception of a predictably hawkish article by former CIA Director R. James Woolsey in the Asian Wall Street Journal, detailing why an invasion of North Korea would be logistically easier and politically less sensitive than the invasion of Iraq.
- Gilligan's Millstone 07/31/2003
The author, in picking up the the contentious issues surrounding the death of scientist David Kelly, argues that international law remains as strong and effective today as it did before the decision was made to invade Iraq.
- Post tenebras lux 07/14/2003
The Burundi war is sordid like all the other wars in the world. For this reason it must not be singled out. Burundi is plunged into mourning by a violence that the international community, out of ignorance or oversimplification, tends to simply portray as an ethnic war between Hutus and Tutsis, fanned by ancestral antagonism between these two communities. It’s utterly wrong. The Burundi war is complex and frightfully modern. It is a war for trifling political power and control of the resources. It simply uses the most fallacious pretexts (ethnic group, region, political affiliation) to disguise its true face. In so doing, it utterly resembles so many other armed conflicts in the world.
- Theatre of Peace: reflections. 06/17/2003
In the theatre the public gazes at a remarkable event, one based on conflict; but the audience of the theatre of war gazes at violent conflict. Is there some connection between these definitions of theatre that is more than semantic? Could there be a theatre of peace?
- COWBOY STUPID 05/12/2003
Matthew Norton defends bad grammar and argues against stupidity.
- Deconstructing Reconstruction 04/28/2003
David Ekbladh unravels the real meaning of "post-war reconstruction".
- The Marshall Plan Mystique 04/14/2003
The war in Iraq had not even begun when public discussion began on the rebuilding of Iraq by the US. Is this to be another "not the Marshall plan"? David Ekbladh calls for rethinking the approach to so-called Marshall Plans.
- The Day War Broke Out 03/31/2003
News editor, Joseph Schumacher, checks the editorials around the world on THE DAY WAR BROKE OUT.
- Reunification of Cyprus: Views from the north of the island and from Turkey 03/17/2003