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  • Author: Robert G Patman
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: The US national security state was fashioned at the beginning of the Cold War to contain the global threat of the rival superpower, the Soviet Union. However, this security framework did not wither away with the end of the Cold War and the disintegration of the USSR. The events of September 11 starkly exposed the limitations of a state-centric approach to international security in a globalizing world. But the Bush administration falsely assumed that the traumatic events of 9/11 came out of a clear blue sky, and that a rejuvenated national security state would eventually overwhelm the 'new' threat of terrorism. The dangers of persisting in this direction were shown by the US-led invasion of Iraq. Far from closing the gap between the US approach to security and the operation environment of a post-Cold War world, Bush's war on terror undermined the international reputation of the US and presented the American taxpayer with a huge and probably unsustainable burden. All this highlighted the need for a more multilateral direction in US security policy in the post-Bush era. Such an approach would not only correspond better to the realities of today's interconnected world, but also serve as a buffer against the extension of the power of government that had been witnessed in America during the Bush years.
  • Topic: Security, Cold War, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, America, Soviet Union
  • Author: Mario E Carranza
  • Publication Date: 03-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: This paper examines the economics-security nexus in US policy toward South America, and the implications for South America of the 'securitization' of US foreign economic policy during the Bush administration. There has always been a tight linkage between the US foreign economic and security agendas but the real issue is the degree of 'tightness' at a given point in time. After the Alliance for Progress lost its way the United States tended to pursue its economic and security interests in South America in separate tracks, even if preventing Soviet intrusions in the region remained in the background. Yet after the collapse of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) negotiations in 2004 a US strategy of 'divide and conquer' through bilateral trade deals has been accompanied by a 'securitization' discourse and there are some indications that it may 'securitize' as a new threat the social movements and neopopulist regimes that oppose neoliberal economic policies. The paper discusses the limits of the securitization thesis. The conclusion examines the future of US-South American relations and argues that the United States needs to renew its commitment to genuine multilateralism and re-engage the region to establish an effective and lasting partnership for dealing with common economic and security challenges in the twenty-first century.
  • Topic: Security, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, America, South America