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  • Author: Norah Niland
  • Publication Date: 11-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Watson Institute for International Studies, Brown University
  • Abstract: The United States and its allies, in control of Afghanistan since October 2001, failed to support the development of an inclusive, legitimate and accountable political system. This paper examines how the imposition of an inappropriate model of democracy, the prioritization of American interests over those of Afghans, and a pattern of expedient political decisions have contributed to the destabilization of the country. The democracy and state-building model imposed on Afghanistan was stymied from the outset by critical foundational flaws. These include the return to power of discredited warlords reviled by most Afghans, the marginalization of particular groups including the remnants of the Taliban movement, and the concentration of power in an executive Presidency at the expense of a weak parliamentary structure. In 2014, along with the drawdown of US and NATO troops, Afghanistan's disputed election saga ended in a no-victor deal that effectively discarded the (as yet unknown) results of the ballot box. Once again, Washington politics reinforced the grip of a warlord-dominated elite on the machinery of the state and exposed the hollowness of the US-led and UN-supported state building project.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Corruption, Democratization, Fragile/Failed State
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Victoria Christensen
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Geneva Centre for Security Policy
  • Abstract: Since the summer of 2011, the country of Myanmar has been experiencing rapid democratic reform. Headlines lauding these positive changes have become common-place in the international media. However, experts and academics who have been involved in the decade-long campaign to bring peace and democracy to Myanmar remain divided over how sincere these changes are. Some accuse the Government of carrying out “window-dressing” reforms to please the Western governments and enable the lifting of sanctions. They argue that the Government has a vested interest in maintaining the reins of power and that there is no incentive to make true democratic reforms. During a speech in Oslo in June 2012, Aung San Suu Kyi, the Myanmarese Pro-democracy leader described the recent reforms as positive but warned against blind faith in the process and pointed out the main challenges that remain unresolved – namely the ethnic issues and the ongoing imprisonment of political prisoners.
  • Topic: Democratization, Human Rights, Political Economy, Governance, Reform
  • Political Geography: Geneva, United States, China, Tehran, Korea, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Christian von Soest, Julia Grauvogel
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: International sanctions have been one of the most commonly used tools of Western foreign policy in the post‐Cold War era to instigate democratization globally. However, despite long‐term external pressure through sanctions imposed by the European Union, the United States and/or the United Nations, nondemocratic rule in cases such as Belarus, Cuba, Eritrea, Iran, North Korea and Syria has proven to be extremely persistent. In this paper, we analyze a new global dataset on sanctions from 1990 to 2011 and assess which international and domestic factors account for the persistence of nondemocratic rule in targeted regimes. The results of a fuzzy set Qualitative Comparative Analysis (fsQCA) of 120 episodes of sanctions provide new insights for the research on both sanctions and authoritarian regimes. Most significantly, sanctions strengthen nondemocratic rule if the regime manages to incorporate their existence into its legitimation strategy. Such a “rally‐round‐the‐flag” effect occurs most often in cases where comprehensive sanctions targeting the entire population are imposed on regimes that enjoy strong claims to legitimacy and have only limited linkages to the sanction sender.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Governance, Sanctions
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, North Korea, United Nations, Syria
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: As the presidential election approaches in 2014, with the security transition at the year's end, Afghan women, including parliamentarians and rights activists, are concerned that the hard-won political, economic and social gains achieved since the U.S.-led intervention in 2001 may be rolled back or conceded in negotiations with the insurgents. Afghanistan's stabilisation ultimately rests on the state's accountability to all its citizens, and respect for constitutional, legal and international commitments, including to human rights and gender equality. There will be no sustainable peace unless there is justice, and justice demands that the state respect and protect the rights of women, half its population.
  • Topic: NATO, Democratization, Development, Gender Issues, Peace Studies, War, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia
  • Author: Peter Andreas, Angelica Duran-Martinez
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Watson Institute for International Studies, Brown University
  • Abstract: Illicit trade has long been a central feature of Latin America's engagement in the world. In this chapter we first briefly sketch the scope and dimensions of illicit trade in the region, and stress the importance of various types of power asymmetries. Drawing on illustrations primarily from drug trafficking (by far the most studied and documented case), we then outline in a preliminary fashion some of the key issues in understanding transnational illicit flows and their impact on Latin America foreign and domestic policy and governance. We concentrate on four themes: 1) the relationship between illicit trade and diplomatic relations with the United States; 2) the relationship between illicit trade and democratic governance; 3) the relationship between illicit trade and organized violence; and 4) the relationship between illicit trade and neoliberalism.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Development, War on Drugs, Narcotics Trafficking, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Latin America
  • Author: Steve J. Fox
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: East-West Center
  • Abstract: The aim of this article is to introduce an original framework in which new media ecologies can be understood to develop. Specifically, it examines the unique, world-leading online ecology of South Korea, to suggest how new forms of democratic process and social organisation can be emulated elsewhere. The discussion identifies and analyses several policy and cultural factors to distil three encompassing variables that comprise a framework for understanding the Korean situation, and the application of new technologies: structure, ethos and activity. Ultimately, it is a framework that may be used to investigate social organisation mechanisms that may potentiate news media's role in democratic society. This concept of social organisation is constructed around the notion of social capital and theorised as an infrastructure for new news media models. In the outcome, it is argued that news media could themselves become civic socialization mechanisms that encourage a more active and engaged citizenry, reflecting social capital's strong relationship with political participation, and thus a continuing foundational role for journalism in democracy.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Communications, Mass Media
  • Political Geography: United States, East Asia, South Korea
  • Author: Carl Meacham
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Is democracy in danger in the Dominican Republic? Is the country headed toward sustained one-party rule? In an effort to understand the state of Dominican democracy and rule of law, CSIS Americas Program director Carl Meacham led a six-month initiative to answer these questions. This report, which details the project's findings, pays particular attention to alleged growing levels of corruption within the government and the independence—and effectiveness—of the country's judiciary, as well as implications for the Dominican Republic's relations with the United States.
  • Topic: Corruption, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Caribbean
  • Author: Aparna Mathur, Sadanand Dhume, Julissa Milligan, Hemal Shah
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
  • Abstract: Two decades after the end of the Cold War, US–India relations stand at a crossroads. Not so long ago, many in Washington viewed the signing of the historic US–India civil nuclear deal as the advent of a dynamic partnership with the potential to transform Asia and the world. Today US–India ties are just as often characterized as unrealistic or oversold.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Diplomacy, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: United States, South Asia, Washington, India
  • Author: Amy Hawthorne, Danya Greenfield
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The United States and Europe have yet to show the requisite political will or to develop sustainable strategies to help Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and Yemen in their democratic transitions more than two years after a wave of popular revolutions toppled decades-old autocracies. To be sure, deepening political, economic, and security challenges in these countries from June 2012 to August 2013, the period analyzed in this report, complicated efforts to provide support. Yet the United States and the European Union (EU) missed important opportunities to capitalize on openings where they existed or to send consistent and sustained diplomatic messages where needed. Faced with the vast amounts of cash the Gulf countries could provide rapidly to the transition countries, especially to Egypt, some in Washington and Brussels wondered if the United States and the EU even had much to offer. In the past year, fatigue and frustration more than energy and hope have characterized US and European engagement with these countries.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Social Movement
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Middle East, Libya, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia
  • Author: Peter Cary
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: After the ouster of the Taliban from power by U.S.-led coalition troops in November 2001, the media scene in Afghanistan exploded. Under the Taliban, only one government radio station was allowed to operate, and there were no independent media. Ten years later, the Afghan media scene is a lively place, with more than 175 FM radio stations, 75 TV channels, four news agencies, and hundreds of publications including at least seven daily newspapers. Internet cafes can be found in major cities, and 61 percent of Afghans have mobile phones, which some use to listen to radio.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Development, Mass Media
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Central Asia, Taliban
  • Author: Ebru Oğurlu
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: Over the last few years, the Eastern Mediterranean has been increasingly fraught with growing competition between regional players, most notably Turkey, Cyprus, and Israel, signalling an apparent return of power politics in regional relations. Of all actors involved, Turkey stands out for being both an ever more influential power and a source of serious concern to other countries in the region due to its greater assertiveness and perceived hegemonic ambitions. Against the backdrop of recent regional developments and their international implications, including the dispute over drilling rights off Cyprus' coasts, Turkey's image as a constructive and dialogue-oriented country, a critical achievement pursued by a generation of Turkish politicians, diplomats and officials, risks being replaced by one of an antagonistic/assertive power. Facing the first serious challenge to its claim to embody a benign model as a secular Muslim democracy and a responsible international actor, Turkey should not indulge in emotional reactions. It should opt instead for a more moderate and balanced approach based on the assumption that only cooperation and constructive dialogue, even with rival countries, can help it realize its ambition of being the regional pivot.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Development, Islam, Power Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Greece, Asia, Colombia, Cyprus
  • Author: Alex Thurston
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Islamists have become an important political force in Mauritania since formal Islamist associations first emerged in the 1970s. Islamist activism has contributed to the ongoing Islamization of Mauritanian society, as is evident from the proliferation of mosques and Islamic associations in the capital, Nouakchott, and elsewhere. In the 1990s, political liberalization allowed Islamists to participate in elections as independents, and since its legalization in 2007, Tewassoul, the strongest Islamist party in Mauritania today, has become a significant minority voice in the country's politics and has built ties with Islamists elsewhere in the Arab world. These moderate Islamists who participate in elections hold different beliefs and goals from Mauritania's jihadist fringe. Overall, Mauritanian Islamism does not currently pose a threat to the United States. The mainstream of the movement appears committed to democracy and, even so, is unlikely to take power. Islamist parties like Tewassoul have never captured a large share of the vote in elections, and moderate Islamist leaders have explicitly rejected using violence to take over the state. Indeed, the United States may even find an upside to the Islamists' rise: Mainstream Islamist leaders publicly condemn the Muslim terrorist group Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which the Mauritanian government has been combating since 2005.
  • Topic: Democratization, Islam, Politics, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States, North Africa
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Something is brewing in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. It is not so much that protests have been spreading since 2011; the country has experienced these before and so far they remain relatively small. It is, rather, who is behind them and from where dissatisfaction stems. East Bankers – Jordanians who inhabited the area before the arrival of the first Palestinian refugees in 1948 – have long formed the pillar of support for a regime that played on their fears concerning the Palestinian-origin majority. That pillar is showing cracks. The authorities retain several assets: popular anxiety about instability; U.S. and Gulf Arab political and material support; and persistent intercommunal divisions within the opposition. But in a fast-changing region, they would be reckless to assume they can avoid both far-reaching change and turmoil. Ultimately, they must either undertake the former one or experience the latter.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Civil Society, Democratization, Regime Change, Political Activism
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia, Jordan
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Since it assumed power after Hosni Mubarak's ouster, the performance of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has been, at times, head-scratching. Extolled in the wake of the uprising as the revolution's protector, many have come to view it as an agent of the counter-revolution. It often has been obstinate, before abruptly yielding to pressure. It values its long ties with Washington, from which it receives much assistance, but seemed willing to jeopardise them by targeting U.S.-funded NGOs. Suspected by Islamists of seeking to deprive them of opportunity to govern and by non-Islamists of entering a secret pact with the Muslim Brotherhood, it finds itself in the worst of both worlds: an angry tug-of-war with liberal protesters and a high-wire contest with Islamists. It displays little interest in governing, wishing instead to protect privileges, but erratic behaviour threatens even that. On the eve of presidential elections that have become a high-stakes free-for-all, the SCAF should take a step back and, with the full range of political actors, agree on principles for a genuine and safe political transition.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Islam, Regime Change
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Ted Piccone, Emily Alinikoff
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: As the emerging global order takes shape, debate is growing more intense around the trajectory of the rising powers and what their ascendency to positions of regional and international influence means for the United States, its traditional allies, and global governance more broadly. Commentary about these rising powers— often referred to in a generic way as the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) but actually encompassing a dozen or so countries largely represented in the G-20—ranges from alarmist to sanguine. Pessimists argue that China, with its impressive economic growth and increasingly global reach, is well-positioned to challenge the United States' role of global superpower and to weaken the commitment of other rising powers, and various international organizations, to liberal values. More optimistic analysts insist that the rise of middle powers, most of which are democracies of varying stripes, bodes well for the world: millions are being lifted out of poverty, rule of law is taking hold and the international system is bound to be a more inclusive, representative one.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, Globalization, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, Markets, Poverty, Governance
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Arabia
  • Author: Anar Valiyev
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: As Azerbaijan celebrates its 20th anniversary of independence, democratic development remains a key challenge facing the country. Despite the fact that Azerbaijan successfully coped with immediate problems such as poverty reduction and economic and political stability, the need to reform the public administration and decentralize governance has become particularly urgent. The main problems, however, remain the same: low public trust in institutions, the absence of a democratic political culture and the lack of bridging social capital. In this regard, the assistance of the Transatlantic Community is necessary. The European Union and the United States should pursue a developmental approach to democracy promotion in Azerbaijan, which has higher chances to succeed than a more explicitly political approach, considering the weak institutional capacity in the country.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, Poverty, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Azerbaijan
  • Author: Dieter Ernst
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: East-West Center
  • Abstract: For its proponents, America's voluntary standards system is a "best practice" model for innovation policy. Foreign observers however are concerned about possible drawbacks of a standards system that is largely driven by the private sector. There are doubts, especially in Europe and China, whether the American system can balance public and private interests in times of extraordinary national and global challenges to innovation.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Globalization, International Trade and Finance, Markets, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Europe
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: International, particularly U.S., military and civilian aid has failed to improve Pakistan's performance against jihadi groups operating on its soil or to help stabilise its nascent democracy. Lopsided focus on security aid after the 11 September 2001 attacks has not delivered counterterrorism dividends, but entrenched the military's control over state institutions and policy, delaying reforms and aggravating Pakistani public perceptions that the U.S. is only interested in investing in a security client. Almost two-thirds of U.S. funding since 2002 ($15.8 billion) has been security-related, double the $7.8 billion of economic aid. Under an elected government, and with civilian aid levels at their highest in decades, the U.S. and other donors can still play a major part in improving service delivery, supporting key reforms and strengthening a fragile political transition vital to internal and regional stability. Re-orientation of funding from military security purposes to long-term democracy and capacity building support is the best way to guarantee the West's and Pakistan's longterm interests in a dangerous region. But aid policies must be better targeted, designed and executed.
  • Topic: Democratization, Terrorism, Foreign Aid, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, United States, South Asia
  • Author: Robert D. Lamb, Sadika Hameed
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: This report presents the results of a study on the link between the rise of militants and the quality of subnational governance in Pakistan: whether a link exists and, if so, what the United States can do about it, if anything. Its basic finding is that Pakistan's governance problems are not caused by militancy, and its problems with militancy are not directly caused by its governance problems, but improving governance will be necessary (though not sufficient) to counter militancy. Pakistan's governance problems are extensive and will take a long time to overcome. But they are not insurmountable, and recent trends offer reason for hope: the military's prestige has declined, the civilian government is likely to complete its full term, the judiciary is increasingly independent, civil society is increasingly confident even in the face of militant intimidation, and recent reforms—the Local Governance Ordinance of 2001 and the Eighteenth Amendment to the constitution—have put in place a set of institutions and incentives that are likely to contribute to improvements in the future.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Corruption, Democratization, Development, Armed Struggle, Bilateral Relations, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, United States, South Asia
  • Author: David Kirby, Emily McClintock Ekins
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Many people on the left still dismiss the tea party as the same old religious right, but the evidence says they are wrong. The tea party has strong libertarian roots and is a functionally libertarian influence on the Republican Party.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Politics, Insurgency, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Ross Eventon
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: At its core, the U.S.-led occupation of Afghanistan is an attempt to establish a client regime supported by a military operation to pacify resistance. In May 2012, the Obama administration took a major step towards consolidating its war aims and signed the Enduring Partnership Agreement with President Karzai, which ensures a U.S. military presence for at least a decade after 2014. It is clear from this agreement, the previous memorandums on detention and night raids, and the continuing development of U.S. mega-bases in the country that 2014 is far from a “withdrawal” date.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Islam, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: G. John Ikenberry, Daniel Deudney
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Over the past half-century—what is often called the “American century”—the United States enjoyed extraordinary success, growth, and influence. It was not only the pivotal “arsenal” in the defense of democracy but also the principal exemplar of democratic capitalism that held enormous appeal around the world. During this era, the United States was simultaneously locked in a geopolitical and ideological bipolar struggle with the Soviet Union and, within the free world community, acknowledged as the leader and defender of a broad community of democratic capitalist countries. Not surprisingly, therefore, the United States pursued a multifaceted grand strategy. It played the role of Cold War leader of a coalition in global great power rivalry. It was also the indispensable leader in building order and cooperation within the free world camp. At the same time, the United States often employed its immense influence to advance a universalistic program of human betterment centered on political democracy, market capitalism, free trade, human rights, national self-determination, and international law and organization.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Democratization, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: United States, Soviet Union
  • Author: Patrick Keller
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: The American President is still the most influential actor in international affairs. Despite the talk of American decline and the evidence of rising powers, despite the new complexities of globalization and the increased relevance of non-state actors, the U.S. President continues to play a special role. As head of the strongest of all national economies, commander in chief of the mightiest armed forces in the history of the world, and leader of the present-day democracy with the oldest constitution, his policies and his bearing shape international politics more than those of any other actor. It is thus understandable that not just the American people but also U.S. allies in NATO and the world at large follow the current presidential campaign with keen interest. Given that the United States is first among equals in the Alliance, strategists in NATO member states have a particular desire to discern the future President's stance on international security affairs because they will need to plan accordingly. However, in contrasting the positions of President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, they encounter three basic problems.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Democratization, Regime Change
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Øystein Rolandsen, Jacob Høigilt
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre
  • Abstract: The Sudan has gone through two harrowing civil wars since its independence in 1956. Foreign interference and assistance prolonged these, but external involvement has also been vital in Sudanese peace processes. This was the case with the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the Government of the Sudan and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), the main rebel group, which was signed on 9 January 2005. The peace process that culminated in that agreement was led and hosted by the neighbouring countries through the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), with support from further afield, in particular the United States, United Kingdom, South Africa and Norway. These countries have now intensified their involvement in discussions of post-CPA arrangements. The CPA process will have momentous consequences also for Egypt, as thus for Sudanese-Egyptian relations. It is therefore important that Egypt have a clear policy towards, and a constructive engagement in, deliberations over the Sudan's future.
  • Topic: Civil War, Democratization, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, United Kingdom, Sudan, Egypt
  • Author: Marcus E. Ethridge
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: In the wake of the 2010 elections, President Obama declared that voters did not give a mandate to gridlock. His statement reflects over a century of Progressive hostility to the inefficient and slow system of government created by the American Framers. Convinced that the government created by the Constitution frustrates their goals, Progressives have long sought ways around its checks and balances. Perhaps the most important of their methods is delegating power to administrative agencies, an arrangement that greatly transformed U.S. government during and after the New Deal. For generations, Progressives have supported the false premise that administrative action in the hands of experts will realize the public interest more effectively than the constitutional system and its multiple vetoes over policy changes. The political effect of empowering the administrative state has been quite different: it fosters policies that reflect the interests of those with well organized power. A large and growing body of evidence makes it clear that the public interest is most secure when governmental institutions are inefficient decisionmakers. An arrangement that brings diverse interests into a complex, sluggish decisionmaking process is generally unattractive to special interests. Gridlock also neutralizes some political benefits that producer groups and other well-heeled interests inherently enjoy. By fostering gridlock, the U.S. Constitution increases the likelihood that policies will reflect broad, unorganized interests instead of the interests of narrow, organized groups.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics, Power Politics, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Jonas Wolff
  • Publication Date: 03-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Bolivia offers a critical, but atypical, case for international democracy promotion. The ongoing political transformation initiated by President Evo Morales constitutes one of the few experiences in the world of a serious effort to build a democracy different from the existing Western liberal models. And this presents a significant challenge to democracy promotion efforts.
  • Topic: Democratization, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: United States, Latin America, Bolivia
  • Author: Thomas Carothers, Richard Youngs
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The emergence of a multipolar world gives Western democracy advocates cause for both optimism and anxiety. China's success sparks fears of the spread of an autocratic development model. Yet democratic states such as Brazil, Indonesia, India, South Africa, and Turkey are also gaining ground. These countries serve as powerful examples of the universal appeal of democracy and possess unique experiences with democratization. The United States and Europe understandably hope that rising democracies will use their growing prominence to defend democratic values abroad, potentially revitalizing international democracy support.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Indonesia, Turkey, India, South Africa, Brazil
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Since taking office in March 2011, President Thein Sein has moved remarkably quickly to implement reforms. He has reached out to opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, released significant numbers of political prisoners, cut back on media censorship and signed a new law allowing labour unions to form. On the eve of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's early December visit, key benchmarks set by Western countries imposing sanctions, such as releasing political prisoners and creating the conditions for Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) to join the political process, appear well on their way to being met. Now, a bold peace initiative has given hope the country's biggest challenge – the devastating 60-year-long civil war between the government and ethnic groups – can also be resolved.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Diplomacy, Peace Studies
  • Political Geography: United States, South Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Oeindrila Dube, Suresh Naidu
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Global Development
  • Abstract: Does foreign military assistance strengthen or further weaken fragile states facing internal conflict? We address this question by estimating how U.S. military aid affects violence and electoral participation in Colombia. We exploit the allocation of U.S. military aid to Colombian military bases, and compare how aid affects municipalities with and without bases. Using detailed political violence data, we find that U.S. military aid leads to differential increases in attacks by paramilitaries (who collude with the military), but has no effect on guerilla attacks. Aid increases also result in more paramilitary (but not guerrilla) homicides during election years. Moreover, when military aid rises, voter turnout falls more in base municipalities, especially those that are politically contested.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Democratization, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: United States, Colombia, Latin America
  • Author: David Kirby, David Boaz
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Libertarian—or fiscally conservative, socially liberal—voters are often torn between their aversions to the Republicans' social conservatism and the Democrats' fiscal irresponsibility. Yet libertarians rarely factor into pundits' and pollsters' analyses.
  • Topic: Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: John Samples
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The United States Supreme Court decided in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that Congress may not prohibit spending on political speech by corporations. President Obama and several members of Congress have sharply criticized Citizens United, and Sen. Charles Schumer and Rep. Chris Van Hollen have proposed the DISCLOSE Act in response to the ruling. DISCLOSE mandates disclosure of corporate sources of independent spending on speech, putatively in the interest of shareholders and voters. However, it is unlikely that either shareholders or voters would be made better off by this legislation. Shareholders could demand and receive such disclosure without government mandates, given the efficiency of capital markets. The benefits of such disclosure for voters are likely less than assumed, while the costs are paid in chilled speech and in less rational public deliberation. DISCLOSE also prohibits speech by government contractors, TARP recipients, and companies managed by foreign nationals. The case for prohibiting speech by each of these groups seems flawed. In general, DISCLOSE exploits loopholes in Citizens United limits on government control of speech to contravene the spirit of that decision and the letter of the First Amendment.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Human Rights
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Rosemary Armao
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: It is often taken for granted that a free press shining a light on wrongdoing is the way to ntrol corruption. The World Bank, with an eye to the economic potential of honest government, promotes this, as do United Nations agencies and the U.S. and European governments, which spend millions of dollars to develop media with corruption-fighting power. And brave journalists have endured threats and attacks and have even died reporting about corruption. In June and July of 2010 alone, three Philippino and a Greek journalist-working in different media and on different topics, but all exposing corruption-were gunned down. Covering corruption is more dangerous than covering war.
  • Topic: Corruption, Democratization, Development, Mass Media, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman, Vivek Kocharlakota, Adam Seitz
  • Publication Date: 08-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: US competition with Iran has become the equivalent of a game of three-dimensional chess, in which other states are outside players that can constantly intervene, and one where each side can modify at least some of the rules with each move. It is a game that has been going on for some three decades. It is clearly unlikely to be ended by better dialog and mutual understanding, and that Iran's version of “democracy” is unlikely to change the way it is played in the foreseeable future. This does not make dialogue and negotiation pointless. Dialogue and negotiation do reduce the risk of escalation and misunderstanding. They offer a peaceful means of placing limits on Iran's behavior, of helping to convince Iran's regime that such limits are really in its interest, and establishing “rules of the game” which limit the risks involved to both sides.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Nuclear Weapons, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Haiti votes in a month's time – on 28 November 2010 – for a new president and nearly an entire legislature in perhaps the most important elections in its history. The government that emerges will need to manage a major part of the decade of recovery from the worst disaster ever in the Western Hemisphere. To do so, it requires the legitimacy that can only come from credible elections. But the historical obstacles – such as low turnout, suspicion of fraud and campaign violence – not only persist but have been greatly exacerbated by the 12 January earthquake that killed a quarter million people and left the capital in ruins and its government in disarray, as well as by the current outbreak of cholera. Polarising politics and a body organising the balloting that lacks full public confidence in its integrity add to the challenge. If the electoral process is to be as transparent, non-violent and widely participated in as it needs to be, the government must meet a higher standard than ever before, and the UN, regional organisations and donors like the U.S., Canada, the EU and Brazil must urgently press for this and expand support.
  • Topic: Democratization, United Nations, Natural Disasters
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Canada, Brazil, Caribbean
  • Author: Gero Erdmann
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: Generally speaking, the effects of international political party assistance are viewed negatively, or at least controversially. This study attributes some of the shortcomings of political party aid to the poor relationship between assistance providers and political science party research. They simply operate in different worlds. Party assistance lacks clear-cut concepts and strategies in practice, which makes it difficult to adequately evaluate it. At issue is its “standard method,” with its “transformative” intention to change the party organization of the assistance receivers. At the same time, the scholarship on political parties can provide only limited help to assistance providers due to its own conceptual and methodological restrictions, such as the Western European bias underlying its major concepts, the predominance of a functionalist approach, and the scant empirical research on political parties out-side of Europe and the US. Taking a cue from recent political party research, we could begin to question the overarching role of political parties in the transition and consolidation process of new democracies. Other research findings emphasize the coexistence of different types of party organizations, and the possibility of different organizational developments, which might all be consistent with consolidating democracy. All this suggests the necessity of abandoning the controversial aim of the “transformative impact” of political party aid.
  • Topic: Democratization, Politics, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Bernard Gwertzman (interviewer)
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: After nine months of political wrangling, Iraq's parliament confirmed Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's new coalition government December 21. Though the government is "a good basis for setting out," says Iraq expert Joost Hiltermann, there's much uncertainty about how cohesive it will be and whether the inclusive government formed can govern. Hiltermann says there are questions about who will head the three major security ministries, whether a new National Council for Strategic Policy--designed as a "real check" against Maliki's power--will be approved by parliament, and whether Ayad Allawi, who headed the Iraqiya bloc that won the most seats in the election, will want to head that council. The United States pushed a power-sharing agreement "that went beyond the sharing of ministerial positions," says Hiltermann, but it remains to be seen whether various factions, including the prime minister and his allies, will allow that to happen.
  • Topic: Political Violence, Democratization, Government, Politics, Governance, Sectarianism
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Dirk Peters, Wolfgang Wagner, Cosima Glahn
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: War powers have been contested between governments and parliaments throughout the history of democratic politics and political theory. On the one hand, the authorisation of standing armies, of conscription and of taxes for the purpose of waging war has been the raison d'être of early modern parliamentarianism ever since the English nobility reached a constitutional settlement in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. Moreover, as few decisions potentially have a more severe impact on the lives of citizens than decisions regarding military missions, one can argue that no meaningful notion of democracy could possibly exempt them from parliamentary control (see Lord, 2008). On the other hand, theorists of democratic politics have been concerned that parliamentary influence over military deployments would threaten to undermine executive flexibility and thus hamper the effectiveness of military operations. Machiavelli, Locke, Montesquieu and de Tocqueville all argued that the executive should be able to decide autonomously over the deployment of armed forces (see Damrosch, 2002: 43; Owens and Pelizzo, 2009). Both arguments have survived significant changes in the nature of armed conflict, with self-defence and peace-support missions replacing war as legal and legitimate forms of military force (Neff, 2005).
  • Topic: Democratization, Political Theory, History, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Bryan Groves
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Military Academy, Department of Social Science
  • Abstract: As President George W. Bush relinquishes the reigns as Commander-in-Chief to President Barak Obama, it is fitting to reflect on how the country will remember President Bush in years to come. Whether or not one agrees with his decision to commit U.S. forces to military action against Saddam Hussein and his Ba'ath Party regime in Iraq, it is clear that Bush's legacy will largly be determined by how Iraq turns out--whether as a stable, free, and peace-loving democracy or something short of that. There is certainly plenty of room for continued improvement in the conditions on the ground and ample time for the political, security, and economic situation to yet deteriorate. Yet, since "The Surge" and the change in U.S. counterinsurgency strategy in Iraq, developments in Iraq have taken a fundamentally and undeniably positive turn.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Thomas Carothers
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Pessimism about the progress of democracy in the developing and postcommunist worlds has risen sharply in recent years. Negative developments in a variety of countries, such as military coups, failed elections, and the emergence of antidemocratic populist leaders, have caused some observers to argue that democracy is in retreat and authoritarianism on the march. A broad look at the state of democracy around the world reveals however that although the condition of democracy is certainly troubled in many places, when viewed relative to where it was at the start of this decade, democracy has not lost ground in the world overall. The former Soviet Union is the one region where democracy has clearly slipped backward in this decade, primarily as a result of Russia's authoritarian slide. The Middle East has also been a source of significant disappointment on democracy but mostly in comparison with unrealistic expectations that were raised by the Bush administration. In most of the rest of the world good news with respect to democratization is found in roughly equal proportion to bad news and considerable continuity has prevailed as well.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War, Communism, Democratization, Development, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Middle East
  • Author: Richard N. Haass
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Asserting that the Iranian theocracy has become a "thugocracy," CFR President Richard N. Haass says the Iranian regime will likely prevail because of its use of force against the population. This makes the urgency of negotiating an end to the country's nuclear program more pronounced, and possibly more difficult, Haass says. "The Iranian challenge still exists, and may actually be somewhat worse," he says. "I'm talking about the nuclear program, their influence in Afghanistan and Iraq, their support of Hezbollah and Hamas. None of that has changed." Haass says the Obama administration "still ultimately has to try to deal with [Iran]" but adds: "It has become extraordinarily difficult to talk to this regime, and Iran has become in absolute and relative terms far more capable."
  • Topic: Democratization, Islam
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Iran, Middle East
  • Author: Juan Paul Farías Peña
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: CONfines de Relaciones Internacionales y Ciencia Política
  • Abstract: El estudio de los procesos electorales nos ofrece una excelente oportunidad para reflexionar sobre los efectos políticos de la movilidad social. Se considera que ésta y la estabilidad política comparten una relación directamente proporcional: a mayor movilidad social, mayor estabilidad política; y, por consiguiente, una menor movilidad social genera el efecto contrario (Zapata, 2005: 43).
  • Topic: Democratization, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Andrew Green
  • Publication Date: 06-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: Media play a pivotal role in U.S. foreign policy, but the two U.S. government bodies most directly involved in media development assistance—the State Department's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)—face significant resource shortfalls in this area. This weakness has a direct impact on the U.S. government's ability to support media development around the world. Several units within the State Department are engaged with media efforts. Those that work in media development usually do so in cooperation with or through USAID and its media experts.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Mass Media, Foreign Aid
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Marcus Alexander, Matthew Harding, Carlos Lamarche
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Does development lead to the establishment of more democratic institutions? The key to the puzzle, we argue, is the previously unrecognized fact that based on quantitative regime scores, countries over the past 50 years have clustered into two separate, very distinct, yet equally-common stages of political development—authoritarian states with low levels of freedom on one side an d democracies with liberal institutions on the other side of a bimodal distribution of political regimes. We develop a new empirical strategy—exploiting exogenous world economic factors and introducing new panel data estimators—that allows for the first time to estimate the effects of development as well as unobserved country effects in driving democracy at these different stages of political development. We find that income and education have the least effect on democracy when authoritarian regimes are consolidated and that only country effects, possibly accounting for institutional legacies, can lead to political development. Ironically, it is in highly democratic and wealthiest of nations that income and education start to play a role; however greater wealth and better educated citizenry can both help and hurt democracy depending again on what the country's institutional legacies are. Far from accepting the notion that much of the developing world is cursed by unchanging and poor long-run institutions, policy-makers should take note that with democratization we also see country-specific factors that in turn condition the difference income and education make for democracy.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, Political Economy, Third World
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, China, Asia, Germany
  • Author: Jordan Gans-Morse, Sebastian Mazzuca, Simeon Nichter
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: During elections in many countries, political parties distribute particularistic benefits to individuals. The existing literature reveals that parties choose from at least five distinct strategies when distributing benefits, but fails to explain how parties allocate resources across these strategies. Our formal model provides insight into this key question. Most studies focus exclusively on "vote buying," a strategy by which parties reward voters for switching their votes. Our model first shows how parties trade off between "vote buying" and "turnout buying," a strategy by which parties reward supporters for showing up at the polls (Nichter 2008). We then show how parties combine these and other commonly observed strategies.
  • Topic: Corruption, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Argentina
  • Author: Yezid Sayigh
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: As they emerge from conflict, states can rarely commence the arduous task of reconstruction and consolidate their governments until they undertake extensive restructuring of their security forces. Palestine, Lebanon, and Yemen are all fractured, quasi-democratic states with divided societies, and deep disagreement over what constitutes the national interest. Successful reform in each will require security institutions that answer to democratically-elected civilian leaders, but the U.S. and European approach has thus far focused largely on providing military training and equipment, targeted toward counterterrorist capabilities.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Democratization, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Yemen, Arabia, Lebanon
  • Author: Thomas Carothers
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: President Obama and his foreign policy team are only just starting to confront the challenge of reformulating U.S. democracy promotion policy. Crucial to any such effort will be revitalizing democracy assistance, a domain that has expanded greatly over the past 25 years but risks not adapting adequately to meet the challenges of the new landscape of democratic stagnation in the world. As the largest source of U.S. democracy assistance, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is a natural starting point for such a process of revitalization.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, International Cooperation, Reform
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Ruy Teixeira
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Political polarization in the United States has a number of causes, ranging from media hype to gerrymandering to hyper- ideological elites to cultural “sorting” between the parties. But there is another key contributor that is frequently overlooked: demographic and geographic changes in the electorate that have altered the sizes of different population groups and even shifted their political orientations over time. These changes have helped produce the current deadlock between coalitions of roughly equal size and opposed outlooks. But these same changes—since they will continue to alter group sizes and political orientations in the future—could also provide the impetus for unlocking this polarization and policy gridlock in the future.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Pablo Pinto
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies
  • Abstract: Political leaders in troubled democracies around the world have resorted to an anti-foreign rhetoric to justify the adoption of policies restricting foreign imports, and the free flow of capital and people, allegedly in defense of the national interest. And this rhetoric has resonated positively with large sectors of the electorate in those countries. A similar trend, exploiting a nationalistic sentiment for economic purposes, is observed in campaigns in the United States to buy American. Most studies to date have analyzed the causes and consequences of economic nationalism at the state level. However, there is good reason to believe that sources of economic nationalism should be traced at the individual level: some individuals might be willing to embrace economic nationalism purely on self-interest, yet others will be forced to trade off material and ideational preferences in order to support the national industry. The existence of this tradeoff at the individual level has important implications for coalition formation on trade, investment and migration policy-making. While recent studies suggest that cultural and ideational interests are likely to influence individual attitudes towards trade, one of the central policy dimensions in economic nationalism, the empirical content of the tradeoff between material and non-material preferences remains untested to date. Using data from the International Social Survey Program (ISSP 2003) we explore whether the effect of nationalism on attitudes towards protectionism varies with the individual's position in the economy. We find preliminary evidence that nationalism systematically affects attitudes towards trade in the United States, but less so in the Philippines. We also find that the effect of nationalism is conditional on individuals' skill, or position in the economy.
  • Topic: International Relations, Democratization, Economics, Nationalism
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Philippines
  • Author: Richard W. Soudriette
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: As President-elect Obama prepares to assume office on January 20, 2009, it is important for the incoming Administration to consider keeping America's long standing bipartisan commitment to promoting democracy worldwide. President-elect Obama spoke eloquently about the need to engage America's allies and friends to address global challenges. To continue promoting democracy in the future, the United States must engage other democracies and tap multilateral resources such as the Community of Democracies.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Ann Olson
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: Building independent media in developing countries requires more than freedom of speech, skilled journalists, or strong business management skills. Enabling independent media to perform the crucial roles of being a watchdog over government and educating people about the issues that affect their lives also requires supporting organizations such as trade unions and professional associations for journalists, and a public educated about these roles and responsibilities of media and their function in a democratic and open society.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Development, Third World, Mass Media
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Miriam Fugfugosh
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Geneva Centre for Security Policy
  • Abstract: The OSCE area is marked by a number of common characteristics that define the overall context for mediation efforts. Some of the main commonalities highlighted during the Consultation were: the significant roles of global and regional actors in the OSCE area, including the United States, the member states of the European Union, Russia, Turkey and Iran; the multiplicity of international and regional organisations active in the area, such as the United Nations (UN), Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Council of Europe (CoE), European Union (EU), and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO); and the protracted nature of the so-called 'frozen' conflicts, such as the Transdniestrian, Georgian-Abkhaz, Georgian-Ossetian and Nagorno-Karabakh conflicts. These characteristics pose significant challenges for mediation efforts in the region.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Democratization, Globalization
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Iran, Turkey
  • Author: Daniel K. N. Johnson, Kristina M. Lybecker
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Department of Economics and Business, Colorado College
  • Abstract: During the tabulation of votes in the 2000 presidential election, the world was shocked at the technological inadequacy of electoral equipment in many parts of the US. In reaction to public dismay over "hanging chads", Congress quickly enacted the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), legislation to fund the acquisition of advanced vote-counting technology. However, the intention was to enable, rather than mandate, choices of new electoral equipment. This paper takes advantage of a unique historical opportunity to test whether electoral equipment follows the pattern predicted by well-established models of innovation diffusion, merging electoral data with census data on socioeconomic characteristics. We infer that fiscal constraints to acquisition are strong but are not the only limitations to technology adoption, particularly within certain types of easily identifiable populations.
  • Topic: Democratization, Politics, Social Stratification
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The National Committee on American Foreign Policy was founded in 1974 by Professor Hans J. Morgenthau and others. It is a nonprofit activist organization dedicated to the resolution of conflicts that threaten US interests. Toward that end, the National Committee identifies, articulates, and helps advance American foreign policy interests from a nonpartisan perspective within the framework of political realism. Believing that an informed public is vital to a democratic society, the National Committee offers educational programs that address security challenges facing the United States and publishes a variety of publications, including its bimonthly journal, American Foreign Policy Interests.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Mona Yacoubian
  • Publication Date: 09-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: Parliamentary elections across the Middle East have led to a wave of Islamist victories. Islamist parties typically boast leaders who are young and dynamic, with strong ties to the community; their party organizations brim with energy and ideas, attracting those who seek change. The U.S. government has quietly engaged moderate Islamist parties for several years. U.S. engagement has been most successful where democratic reform is already underway and where the government is genuinely committed to political opening. Other factors include the Islamist parties' political sophistication, popular credibility, and openness to working with U.S. organizations. A successful Islamist engagement strategy both empowers individuals and strengthens institutions to yield greater transparency, more accountability, and shifts toward greater moderation. Of the three cases addressed in this paper—Morocco, Jordan, and Yemen—Morocco appears to hold the greatest promise for U.S. engagement with moderate Islamists. Meanwhile, Jordan and Yemen offer important though limited instances of success. U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East affects the ability of U.S. organizations to promote democracy there. At times, Islamist parties have cut off contact with U.S. democracy promoters to protest specific aspects of U.S. foreign policy, such as the war in Iraq. Ultimately, U.S. engagement of moderate Islamists must be understood within the broader political context of the ideological battle in the Muslim world over the place of Islam in public life. Moderate Islamist parties that reject violence and practice democratic ideals are an important counterweight to Islamist extremism, and their work should be encouraged.
  • Topic: Democratization, Islam, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Yemen, Jordan, Morocco
  • Author: Babak Rahimi
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: Since spring 2003, Sistani has become the preeminent and best financed of the grand ayatollahs remaining in the city of Najaf—and by extension, in Iraq. He remains one of the most powerful figures in Iraq and he brings the Shi'is closer together across the greater Middle East. Since 1997, the Internet has increased the size and the prestige of Sistani's social organization to an astonishing degree on a global basis. Like his father, Sistani is an adherent of a democratic Shi'i tradition that dates back to the Persian Constitutional Revolution of 1906 to 1911 and continued with the Khatami reformist movement (1997–2005). As the general representative of the Hidden Imam, quietist Sistani can remain totally aloof from all political matters, while at times of perceived moral decadence, political corruption, great injustice, or foreign occupation, he can become more active in political affairs by engaging in activities such as consultation, guidance, and even the promotion of sacred norms in public life. Sistani's religious network is increasingly becoming an important source of local governance in southern Iraq, where many Iraqis are hired and at times agree to conduct duties that are usually carried out by the state. Sistani's insistence on recognizing Islam as a fundamental component of the Iraqi constitution is not intended to make Iraq an Islamist state based on juridical sharia strictures, but rather to limit the total secularization of the constitution, which would deprive a Muslim country of an “authentic” national identity based on its Islamic heritage. Sistani could contribute to reducing sectarian tensions by working with other Sunni and Shi'i religious leaders (including tribal leaders) to organize a National Reconciliation Initiative in order to display a united, powerful Sunni-Shi'i front with an emphasis on common Islamic ideals; to express condemnation of anti-Shi'i Wahabi extremism and anti-Sunni Shi'i radicalism; and to form communal solidarity through the ceremonial process of intersectarian group gatherings. Sistani remains a key religious figure who has influence as a peacemaker and mediator among various Shi'i factions and ethnic groups in Basra and Kirkuk that are competing for economic and territorial dominance in the northern and southern regions of the country. As long as the state army is unable to independently fight off the Sunni insurgency and Shi'i militias, it is highly unlikely that Sistani will call for a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq. Sistani is mainly concerned with maintaining stability in the region while rejecting any form of U.S. military adventurism that could seriously endanger the integrity and autonomy of Muslim countries in the greater Middle East. Although Sistani is still a powerful figure within Iraq, his influence has diminished since the bombing of the Shi'i shrine in Samarra in February 2006 and the ensuing increase in Sunni–Shi'i violence. Washington should recognize that until the sectarian warfare subsides, there is no effective way for Sistani to become involved in the Iraqi political process. However, Washington should engage Sistani now, because of the positive role he would have in the democratization of Iraq if the sectarian tensions subside.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Islam
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East, Kirkuk, Basra
  • Author: Robert Perito
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: After one year in office, Haiti's democratically elected government enjoys broad international and domestic support. Donors have pledged more than $1.5 billion in economic assistance. The mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission has been extended. Haitians seem generally pleased with their new leadership. UN military forces have cracked down on armed groups, arresting more than four hundred gang members, including prominent gang leaders. Security in Port-au-Prince has improved as a consequence. U.S. congressional passage of trade preferences and new Haitian incentives for foreign investors should give a boost to Haiti's textile industry. U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) assistance programs should help create jobs in slums and conflicted communities. The sense of guarded optimism emerging from recent successes has done little, however, to alter the grim living conditions experienced by most citizens. Haiti remains the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere; 80 percent of its people live in poverty. Kidnapping, drug trafficking, and organized crime are beyond the control of Haiti's dysfunctional police force and judicial system. Comprehensive international assistance programs are needed to establish and maintain the rule of law. The success of Haiti's new government is vital to the United States and the international community. Fortunately, the United States and other donors appear to have learned from past mistakes and are committed to assisting Haitians to improve governance and promote development over the long term.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Caribbean, Haiti
  • Author: Timothy Carney
  • Publication Date: 12-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: The military surge that was launched in February 2007 has improved the security situation in Baghdad and adjacent regions. It has curbed sectarian violence in the capital and reduced the freedom of action and the support base of insurgents and terrorists in the central governorates. The rationale for the surge was to provide an opportunity for political agreements to be negotiated among Iraqis, but political progress has been stalled and has not matched the security improvements. A political settlement is essential for sustaining the security gains and for longer- term stability. Despite the declaration of a national reconciliation plan by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki in June 2006, by the fall of 2007 only limited progress had been made toward reconciling the differences between the political groups and forging a national agenda. The dominance of sectarian political groups has fueled polarization, and the inability of the government and Parliament to adopt crucial legislation is a measure of continuing distrust between the groups. Serious political dialogue between the sect- based parties has proved difficult and the results are limited. At the same time intra-sectarian rivalries are increasing, particularly in the southern governorates, where the Sadris and the Islamic Supreme Council in Iraq vie for political and economic control of the region. Iraqi institutions have lost ground in the past year. Iraqi ministers from Sunni, Shia, and secular groups have withdrawn from the cabinet, adversely affecting the performance of the government. The sectarian blocs that entered Parliament in December 2005 have lost their cohesiveness. The Shia United Iraqi Alliance has unraveled, and the Sunni Tawafuq coalition is strained. The emergence of tribal forces in Anbar governorate presents opportunities and challenges to the Sunnis and the Shia alike. As the sectarian blocs weaken and the Anbar tribes seek a political role, new alliances are beginning to emerge, and some may succeed in crossing sectarian and regional divides. The debate in Washington has been restricted to the level and duration of U.S. troop presence in Iraq. In the coming months, the debate should turn to means of supporting the political process and strengthening governance in Iraq as a path to stability. Bottom-up approaches to reconciliation and accommodation do not obviate the need for a broader political settlement. The United States should support a sustained international mediation effort led by the UN Security Council resulting in an Iraqi compact endorsed by Iraq's neighbors and the international comm unity. Iraqi efforts to develop cross-sectarian political alliances and national platforms need to be encouraged. The incorporation of the Anbar tribes into national politics is important to sustaining security gains. A competent national government in Baghdad is essential to the long-term stability of Iraq. A weak government will be unable to ensure the internal and external security of the country or manage revenues. More effort and resources are needed to strengthen the competence and effectiveness of the Iraqi government.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Priscilla Clapp
  • Publication Date: 11-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Institute of Peace
  • Abstract: In August and September 2007, nearly twenty years after the 1988 popular uprising in Burma, public anger at the government's economic policies once again spilled into the country's city streets in the form of mass protests. When tens of thousands of Buddhist monks joined the protests, the military regime reacted with brute force, beating, killing, and jailing thousands of people. Although the Saffron Revolution was put down, the regime still faces serious opposition and unrest. Burma's forty-five years of military rule have seen periodic popular uprisings and lingering ethnic insurgencies, which invariably provoke harsh military responses and thereby serve to perpetuate and strengthen military rule. The recent attack on the monks, however, was ill considered and left Burma's devoutly religious population deeply resentful toward the ruling generals. Despite the widespread resentment against the generals, a successful transition to democracy will have to include the military. Positive change is likely to start with the regime's current (though imperfect) plan for return to military-dominated parliamentary government, and achieving real democracy may take many years. When Than Shwe, the current top general, is replaced, prospects for working with more moderate military leaders may improve. In the end, however, only comprehensive political and economic reform will release the military's grip on the country. Creating the conditions for stable, effective democracy in Burma will require decades of political and economic restructuring and reform, including comprehensive macroeconomic reform, developing a democratic constitution and political culture, reestablishing rule of law, rebuilding government structures at national and state levels, and building adequate health and educational institutions. The international community must give its sustained attention to Burma, continuing to press the regime for dialogue with the forces of democracy, beginning with popular democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi, and insisting on an inclusive constitutional process. International players should also urge the regime immediately to establish a national commission of experts to begin studying and making recommendation economic restructuring to address the underlying concerns that brought about the Saffron Revolution. Though China is concerned about the Burmese regime's incompetence, it has only limited sway with the generals, who are fiercely anticommunist and nationalistic. Nonetheless, Beijing will cautiously support and contribute to an international effort to bring transition, realizing that Burma will be seen as a test of China's responsibility as a world power. The United States should restrain its tendency to reach simply for more unilateral sanctions whenever it focuses on Burma. Because a transition negotiated with opposition parties is still likely to produce an elected government with heavy military influence, the United States must prepare to engage with an imperfect Burmese democracy and participate fully in reconstruction and reform efforts, which will require easing some existing sanction.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, International Relations, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Beijing, Burma, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Esther Brimmer(ed.)
  • Publication Date: 01-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Transatlantic Relations
  • Abstract: This book will examine whether leading liberal democracies have a responsibility to respond when democracy is under threat. The United States, the European Union and its Member States pride themselves on their commitment to liberal democracy. They cherish it at home and claim to support it internationally. Americans tend to accept the Kantian notion that the internal conditions of a country help shape its foreign policy. Immanuel Kant presented the idea that democracies do not go to war against each other. Americans have embedded the democratic peace theory in their foreign policy outlook. The fact that the United States and the United Kingdom made a historic shift into strategic alignment across the twentieth century reinforced the notion of a commonality of interests among liberal democracies. A basic premise of American foreign policy in the twentieth century is the notion that as a liberal democracy based on values, the United States should advance certain values in its international affairs. Having always cared about freedom of the seas and freer access for American exports, the republic began to care about freedom itself. Even before the U.S. was committed to international human rights, it supported democracy, albeit imperfectly and inconsistently. America's emergence to the top table of international affairs after the First World War was complemented by President Woodrow Wilson's Fourteen Points. The United States cloaked its military might in the finery of democracy. Yet, this was not mere rhetoric: the U.S. did advance a conception of democracy in the form of self-determination as part of the peace settlement. President Wilson, and his successors in both political parties, understood that grand strategic engagement needed to be underpinned by a philosophical objective.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, International Cooperation, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Europe
  • Author: Rakesh Sharma, Kathleen Holzwart, Rola Abdul-latif
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: This is the 15th public opinion poll conducted in Ukraine by IFES. This report details findings from the latest IFES survey in Ukraine and references findings from earlier surveys done in Ukraine. The fieldwork was conducted from August 28 – September 11, 2007 with 1265 respondents throughout Ukraine. This sample comprised a national sample of 1,200 respondents and an over-sample of 65 respondents in Kyiv. The data has been weighted by region, age, and gender to be nationally representative for the adult (18+) population of Ukraine. The margin of error for a sample of this size is plus/minus 2.75%. The fieldwork and data processing for the survey were conducted by GfK Ukraine, based in Kyiv. Funding for the survey was provided by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
  • Topic: Democratization, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Ukraine, Asia
  • Author: Marguerite H. Sullivan
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: The Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA) at the National Endowment for Democracy aims to strengthen the support, raise the visibility, and improve the effectiveness of media assistance programs by providing information, building networks, conducting research, and highlighting the indispensable role independent media play in the creation and development of sustainable democracies around the world. An important aspect of CIMA's work is to research ways to create an environment that will allow independent and free media to be sustainable and to attract additional U.S. private sector interest in international media development.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Development, Third World
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 02-2007
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Carter Center
  • Abstract: With USAID funding, The Carter Center conducted a targeted observation for Guyana's Aug. 28, 2006, national elections to demonstrate the Center's interest in and support for Guyana's democratization process. The Center also sought to assess the political and electoral environment in Guyana surrounding the 2006 elections in follow-up to former U.S. President Jimmy Carter's 2004 visit to Guyana. The 2006 elections marked a historic event in the country as Guyana experienced its most peaceful election in recent history.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, International Organization
  • Political Geography: United States, Latin America, Guyana
  • Author: Abraham Newman
  • Publication Date: 05-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for German and European Studies, University of California, Berkeley
  • Abstract: Shared fundamental liberties and democratic principles have long provided the core of what observers of international affairs termed the West. While national institutions and policies have at times varied, they rarely challenged the foundations of the transatlantic partnership. With the rise of information technology and the new security environment, however, local variations in fundamental rights have produced significant international implications. Examining recent transatlantic disputes over privacy and free speech, the paper argues that a new set of international issues have emerged dealing with transnational civil liberties. Once core unifying principles of the transatlantic relationship these basic freedoms have transformed into flashpoints for conflict. After identifying this new trend, the paper argues that the nature of these conflicts is framed by the timing of international interdependence relative to the maturity of national regulatory regimes.
  • Topic: International Relations, Democratization, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Pro-democracy demonstrations and a general strike across Nepal in recent weeks mark a decisive shift in the country's political equations and probably signal the approaching end of King Gyanendra's direct rule. A successful popular movement could advance the search for peace but will depend on strong political party leadership in dealing with the Maoists; a messy transition would bring its own risks. Although domestic events will determine the speed and direction of political change, international players should us e their influence to establish practical plans to help stabilise the situation and build a more lasting foundation for peace. This briefing argues for the early formation of a Contact Group (consisting of India, the U.S. and UK, working with the UN) and a complementary Peace Support Group (other key donors and international financial institutions) to form a common front on strategy and tactics to maximise international influence in assisting Nepal's escape from its worsening conflict.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, United Kingdom, India, Asia, Nepal, United Nations
  • Author: Deborah Avant
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Peace and Security Studies
  • Abstract: During the 1990s and into this century, a robust market for force emerged alongside and intertwined with state military forces. The rise of stateless forces associated with globalization is often seen as breaking down barriers between states and enhancing the prospects for peace, particularly among advanced democracies. Stateless forces, in particular marketbased security, may also, however, alter the functioning of democracies. A widely held, albeit often implicit, assumption of much theory and research in international relations, especially in the literature on the democratic peace, is that states rely on their own military organizations rather than hired guns to project force. The question addressed here is whether the attributes that have been identified as promoting trust among democracies remain strong when states rely on private forces instead of, or in addition to, public ones. If greater reliance on the market to satisfy security needs affects the transparency, constitutionalism and public consent of their foreign policy processes, the market for force could have implications for trust among democracies – and at the extreme, perhaps even for the democratic peace. Overall, we conclude that the use of private security by the US threatens to weaken key institutional mechanisms taken to enhance trust between it and other democracies.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Globalization, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Robert Erikson, Joseph Bafumi, Christopher Wlezien
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy at Columbia University
  • Abstract: According to the frequent polling on the generic ballot for Congress, the Democrats hold a large advantage leading up to the vote on November 7. But does this Democratic edge mean that the Democrats will win a majority of House seats? Doubts are often expressed about the accuracy of the generic ballot polls. And even if the polls are correct in indicating a majority of votes going to Democratic candidates, further doubts are expressed about whether the Democrats' vote margin will be sufficient to win the most seats.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Michael Suman
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Aspen Institute
  • Abstract: We live in an era in which security concerns have become paramount, the forces of capitalism have dealt a death blow to socialist command economies, and the United States is aggressively promoting democracy in the Middle East. In this context, what does the future hold for the values of security, capitalism, and democracy? Historians tell us we also are in the Digital Age—increasingly so with the advent of new communications technologies such as the Internet. What role can the media play in fostering the values of security, capitalism, and democracy?
  • Topic: International Relations, Civil Society, Democratization, Globalization
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 06-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: The Middle East will be a central focus of U.S. foreign policy for the next generation and beyond. While the list of challenges in the region is long, the Arab world also presents opportunities. In a region marked by a "democracy deficit" and limited economic prospects, there is also ferment. From Marrakesh to Cairo and Ramallah to Riyadh, Arabs are engaged in intense debate, self-reflection, and reassessment of their societies. Washington has a chance to help shape a more democratic Middle East. Whereas emphasis on stability was once the hallmark of U.S.-Middle East policy, democracy and freedom have become a priority. Indeed, U.S. policymakers concluded shortly after the September 11 attacks that the prevailing domestic political, economic, and social conditions within Arab countries were a serious national security concern.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Publication Date: 03-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Carter Center
  • Abstract: Automated voting (sometimes referred to as electronic or e-voting) technologies are increasingly used in elections across the world, particularly because they are often seen as symbolic of a country's level of modernization. The possibilities for rapid aggregation and analysis of results, as well as potentially greater accuracy, have all added to the attractiveness of computer-based voting equipment. There is little doubt that the ability to quickly publish results can be of particular advantage in conflict and post-conflict scenarios, where a prolonged period of counting can heighten tensions and reduce confidence in the final results. The potential to remove some traditional elements of unintentional voter error or intentional fraud can also contribute to greater confidence, while at the same time raising new questions.
  • Topic: Democratization, Human Rights, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Michael M. May, Roger Speed
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: In September 2002, President George W. Bush announced his new National Security Strategy. Although this doctrine retains some elements from the past, in some respects it is a bold departure from previous U.S. policy. It declares that the United States finds itself in a unique position of military and political dominance and that it has a moral duty to use this strength to establish a new liberal democratic world order. The National Security Strategy and Bush's supporting speeches argue that the United States must in effect establish and maintain a global military hegemony to secure its envisioned democratic, peaceful world. According to the strategy, carrying out this mission requires that any challenge to U.S. military dominance must be blocked, by force if necessary. A significant challenge to world stability comes from terrorists and certain states that are seeking weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Concerned that the Cold War doctrines of deterrence and containment may no longer work, and that "if we wait for threats to fully materialize, we will have waited too long," Bush announced in the National Security Strategy a new "preemption doctrine" against such threats. Earlier, in 2001, the Bush administration's Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) addressed the nuclear aspect of the issue. The review recognized the new cooperative relationship with Russia and the rising threat from the potential proliferation of WMD. The latter point was seen as particularly important, since future conflict with a number of regional powers was thought possible--North Korea, Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Libya all were thought to sponsor or harbor terrorists and to have active WMD and missile programs. The NPR presented a new U.S. strategic military doctrine intended to transform the defense establishment with the creation of a new triad, consisting of offensive strike systems (both nuclear and conventional), defenses (both active and passive), and a revitalized defense infrastructure that will provide new capabilities to meet emerging threats. According to the NPR, the new triad will have four primary missions: to assure, dissuade, deter, and defeat. Bush later added a fifth mission, to preempt, which he characterized as proactive counterproliferation--the use of military force to prevent or reverse proliferation. The "Bush doctrine" called for new nuclear weapons to meet the requirements of these missions. It was argued that smaller nuclear weapons could reduce collateral civilian damage and make U.S. use of nuclear weapons more "credible," therefore deterring hostile nations or even dissuading opponents from acquiring WMD. However, our analysis indicates that low-yield nuclear weapons would likely be militarily effective in only a few cases, and even then the collateral damage could be significant unless the targets were located in isolated areas. Moreover, even if they were militarily effective, they would likely add little or nothing to U.S. deterrent capability, nor be effective at dissuading WMD acquisition. Indeed, the new weapons concepts advanced to date seem to have little to do with deterrence of a nuclear (or other WMD) attack on the United States or its allies. Instead, they appear to be geared toward a warfighting role, which could ultimately undermine rather than enhance U.S. security.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Carl Conetta
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Project on Defense Alternatives
  • Abstract: President Bush was correct when he asserted on 2 December 2004 that it was "time for the Iraqi citizens to go to the polls." Indeed, it is long past time. Elections should have occurred a year or so after the fall of the Hussein regime. But the fact that they are overdue does not mean that an adequate foundation for meaningfully democratic elections has been laid. It has not. Unfortunately, the balloting due to take place on 30 January will not fulfill the promise of democracy nor satisfy the Iraqi passion for selfdetermination. For these reasons, it cannot bring peace. It is more likely to exacerbate civil strife.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Carter Center
  • Abstract: At the invitation of the Palestinian Central Election Commission (CEC), the National Democratic Institute (NDI), in partnership with The Carter Center (TCC), organized a 76- member international delegation to monitor the January 2005 Palestinian presidential election. The delegation was led by former United States President Jimmy Carter, former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt and former New Jersey Governor and United States Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christine Todd Whitman, and supported by a grant from the United States Agency for International Development.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Henrikki Heikka
  • Publication Date: 12-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In recent months, several prominent Finnish politicians have criticized the Finnish government for lack of vision in its foreign policy. Liisa Jaakonsaari, Chairman of the Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee and a prominent social democrat), has argued that the government “lacks one thing, and with it, everything: a vision”. Member of the European Parliament Alexander Stubb (the Conservative party's vote puller in the last EP elections) has publicly called contemporary Finnish foreign policy as “pitiful tinkering” (säälittävää näpertelyä). Editorial writers have begun to recycle the old the term “driwftwood” (ajopuu), a term originally coined to describe Finland's flip-flopping during World War II, in their attempts to find an appropriate label for the present government's foreign policy.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization, Diplomacy, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Finland, Asia
  • Author: Kurt M. Campbell
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Aspen Institute
  • Abstract: Former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara was fond of saying that the Middle East was the graveyard of American diplomatic hopes and dreams, and this is a man who knows something about disappointment in global politics (as well as cemeteries). Now, the United States has embarked upon an ambitious mission to remake the Middle East – rebuilding war-ravaged and leader-abused countries in Afghanistan and Iraq, seeking to settle the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, blocking further nuclear proliferation, pushing the region to embrace political moderation and reform, and hopefully improving America's image in the region in the process. There are unintentional though unavoidable echoes of the “best and the brightest” in this campaign as the U.S. embarks upon a global crusade (call it what it is) to help re-direct the course of one of the world's dominant civilizations and the institutions that have served it so poorly. This uniquely American sense of mission and manifest destiny is apparent in a range of endeavors worldwide but it is in the Middle East where U.S. ambitions approach the point of audacity.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East
  • Author: Thomas R. Pickering, James R. Schlesinger, Eric P. Schwartz
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: On March 20, 2003, the United States launched Operation Iraqi Freedom, designed to remove the regime of Saddam Hussein. By mid-April, major fighting was essentially over, and on May 1, the United States declared an end to major combat operations.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Daniel W. Christman, John G. Heimann, Julia E. Sweig
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: The democracies of the Andean region—Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia—are at risk. The problems that characterize other developing regions—including political instability, economic stagnancy, widening inequality, and social divisions along class, color, ethnic, ideological, and urban-rural fault lines—are all present in the Andes. Most important is the region's physical insecurity, due in some countries to ongoing or resurgent violent conflict, and in every country to the lack of state control over significant territory and to porous borders that enable the easy movement of drugs, arms, and conflict. Equally sobering, expectations for strong democracy and economic prosperity in the Andes remain unrealized. Recognizing its interests in the Andes, the United States over the past two decades has spent billions of dollars and significant manpower to stem the flow of illegal drugs from the region northward; to assist local security forces in the fight against drugs, terror, and insurgency; and to promote free markets, human rights, and democratic consolidation. Yet the region remains on the brink of collapse, an outcome that would pose a serious threat to the U.S. goal of achieving democracy, prosperity, and security in the hemisphere.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: United States, Colombia, South America, Latin America, Venezuela, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia
  • Author: Patrick Basham
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Is Iraq capable of moving smoothly from dictatorship to democracy? This paper contends that the White House will be gravely disappointed with the result of its effort to establish a stable liberal democracy in Iraq, or any other nation home to a large population of Muslims or Arabs, at least in the short to medium term.
  • Topic: Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Ivan Eland
  • Publication Date: 10-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Independent Institute
  • Abstract: The United States has plunged into an Iraqi swamp. The swashbuckling victory in the first Gulf War led to the most egregious sin that can be made in the military affairs—hubris and underestimation of the enemy. The U.S. and Soviet superpowers made the same mistake respectively in Vietnam in the sixties and seventies and Afghanistan in the eighties. But as those quagmires fade from memory, government officials apparently have to relearn the same lessons.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Soviet Union, Vietnam
  • Publication Date: 03-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: United States Agency for International Development
  • Abstract: Many of us working in the United States on democracy assistance tend to consider civil society organizations (CSOs) and political parties, and support for them, separately. But reality remains much more complex, and the nature of existing relationships in the countries we work in and the effects of democracy assistance on those relationships matter for our larger democracy and governance (DG) goals. They, therefore, deserve explicit examination. This paper deals with two broad sets of questions. First, what do we think we should be aiming for at the systemic level, in terms of the relationship between civil society and political parties? Second, in a given setting, what kinds of relationships, at the micro level (among individual organizations), can contribute to democratization?
  • Topic: Civil Society, Democratization, Education, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Richard J. Krickus
  • Publication Date: 01-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
  • Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to address two questions associated with Lithuania's political crisis in 2004. First, what were the domestic circumstances that led to the impeachment of Lithuania's President, Rolandas Paksas? Second, what evidence is there that Russia has played a significant role in the crisis and what are the motives behind Moscow's meddling in Lithuania's internal affairs? Answers to these questions are pertinent to the fate of countries throughout post-communist Europe, given their common history and geography. In addition, they provide the framework for addressing a third question that must be answered by the European Union (EU), NATO and the United States: what can be done about these two-fold threats to the newest members of the Western alliance?
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Lithuania, Moscow
  • Author: Thomas Carothers
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: As part of the changed U.S. geostrategic outlook arising from the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against the United States, the Bush administration is giving greatly heightened attention to the issue of promoting democracy in the Middle East. Although a policy of coercive regime change has been applied in Iraq, in most of the region the administration is pursuing a more gradualist model of political change that emphasizes diplomatic pressure and democracy-related aid.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Marina Ottaway
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Since early last year, the Bush administration has paid unaccustomed attention to the issue of democracy in the Middle East. Following September 11, many U. S. officials have worried that the authoritarianism of most Arab regimes has bred frustration in their countries, and this frustration has in turn favored the growth of terrorist organizations. U.S. discussions about the need for democracy in the Middle East have triggered a strong negative reaction by Arab commentators and journalists, including in discussions of democracy in the Arab press. However, very little of this writing has dealt with the problem of democracy in the real sense—that is, with the issue of how Arab governments relate to their citizens now and how they should relate to their citizens in the future. Instead, Arab commentators have treated democracy as a foreign policy issue, asking why the United States is suddenly discussing democracy in the Arab world and what true intentions it is trying to hide behind the smoke screen of democracy talk. The debate in the Arab press reveals some of the obstacles that the United States faces as it attempts to define its new pro-democracy role in the Middle East.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: George Perkovich, Joseph Cirincione, Jessica T. Mathews
  • Publication Date: 01-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: American televisions are filled with war rooms, countdowns, deadlines, and showdowns with Iraq. The almost minute by minute coverage distorts public understanding of how inspections work and creates a false sense of the inevitability of war. No decision has in fact been made. Within the administration some indeed intend the buildup as the prelude to war while for others it presents the credible threat of war that is necessary to compel Iraq's disarmament through inspections.
  • Topic: Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, America, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 12-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: The terrorist acts in the United States on 11 September 2001 have prompted an ongoing discussion of how international engagement, in all its aspects, can undermine Islamist radicalism and promote religious tolerance. New attention to Central Asia after 9/11, including a Western military presence, has also focused minds on whether the region is at serious threat from Islamist radicalism and what can be done about it. This report examines the attitudes of Central Asian Muslims to the West, based on public opinion surveys and interviews in Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, and offers a range of policy options for closer engagement with Islam and approaches that might reduce support for radical alternatives to present regimes.
  • Topic: Democratization, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Navigating the treacherous shoals of the Iraq conflict with a steady hand, Jordan appears to have emerged unscathed from the turbulent months just past. The Hashemite Kingdom adjusted its rhetoric to fit the public mood while backing U.S. policy in Iraq and in the Israeli-Palestinian struggle, managed to overcome its principal weaknesses and now faces the post-war world with renewed confidence and authority.
  • Topic: Democratization, Demographics, Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Arabia, Jordan
  • Author: Daniel R. Lynch
  • Publication Date: 02-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame
  • Abstract: There is no shortage of pronouncements that we are now at a key point in history. This critical moment has four defining characteristics: industrialization, the explosion in scientific and technical knowledge, globalization, and a missing emphasis on the public good.
  • Topic: Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East
  • Author: Mumukshu Patel
  • Publication Date: 11-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The National Academy of Public Administration
  • Abstract: On November 6, 2003 in a speech at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), President George W Bush enunciated his Middle East Doctrine: democratization of the region as the first priority of U.S. strategy, irrespective of past policy considerations. It was the most ambitious policy overhaul for the region, since President Eisenhower's commitment to defend the Middle East against Soviet Communism. Following the Eisenhower doctrine all U.S. Middle East policy reflected strategic U.S. concerns: as long as states in the Middle East cooperated with the U.S., shunned Communism and later rejected theocratic regimes – at least nominally, the United States would ignore their domestic policies, and support them – via foreign aid, military technology and personnel etc. This was the status quo that characterized U.S. policy toward the Middle East.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Soviet Union
  • Author: Ryan J. Watson
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The National Academy of Public Administration
  • Abstract: Global debate and media awareness of the complex issues involved with post-conflict governance are at an all-time high. With the reconstruction of the Balkans still leaving much left undone, the United States and much of the international community are seeking to balance continued intervention in Afghanistan with the emerging challenge of rebuilding Iraq.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Balkans
  • Author: Terry F. Buss, Stevens F. Redburn
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The National Academy of Public Administration
  • Abstract: Changes in society and emerging technologies offer new possibilities for meaningful citizen participation in public choices. A new set of computer-based processes will support sophisticated and game -like group decision-making. Advanced software design accompanied by sensitivity to the hum an/machine interactions that must be managed can lead to citizen-friendly software products and processes that ordinary people can use both individually and in a group setting to make complex choices.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Vladimir Matic
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Public International Law Policy Group
  • Abstract: Nationalism remains a potent force in Serbia, strongly affecting the politicking within the political elite regarding final status issues in Kosovo. The democratic forces are not immune from Kosovo-related nationalism and have at times adopted hardline positions to diminish their vulnerabilities in the political struggle. Since the end of the Kosovo war the West has done nothing to dispel the perception in Belgrade that Serbia's legal claim of sovereignty over Kosovo remains valid in principle and of equivalent standing as an issue “on the table” with Kosovo Albanians' insistence on independence in the prelude to negotiations. Belgrade ignores the fact that, with virtually no Albanians in Kosovo willing to work with them, they have no Albanian partners in pursuing this goal. Kosovo Serbs also display considerable mistrust of Belgrade's concern for their interests. The EU and UNMIK have attempted to create a framework for progress on the issue, but success will hinge on the willingness of the United States to exercise diplomatic leadership to resolve the deadlock.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Kosovo, Serbia, Albania
  • Author: Vladimir Matic
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Public International Law Policy Group
  • Abstract: The assassinated prime minister of Serbia, Zoran Djindjic, appears to have won in death much of what he could not achieve in life. His concept of Serbia's way out of the domestic political and economic crisis through reform and membership in a democratic Europe has prevailed over one representing the past; Serbia is finally open to cooperation with the world. But the national consensus he was dreaming about does not yet exist. The prevalence and reach of networks of organized crime and corruption limit prospects for significant further structural change and more serious consolidation of the rule of law. The Serbian people have put aside for the moment their infatuation with radical nationalism rather than exorcising it from their society and intellectual culture. The success of such reform as has been implemented is far from secured. For the time being the joint efforts of the leading pro-democratization parties of Serbia and Montenegro have brought about the beginning of long-postponed changes in the army and initiated far-reaching reforms. This allows continuation of reforms in Serbian services and strengthening of the basic institutions of democracy. If continued, expanded and intensified, this course will take both Serbia and Montenegro irrespective of the final destiny of their Union closer to democracy and to the European Union and the United States.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Serbia
  • Author: Vladimir Shkolnikov
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: This paper discusses Western democratization assistance programs to Caspian states over the last ten years and the lessons policy makers should learn from these programs. It makes the following points: The euphoria of the early 1990s over the end of the Cold War caused Western organizations to have unrealistic expectations for democratic development in the former Soviet Union. Western democracy assistance programs have often failed to take the perspective of “the ordinary person on the street” in recipient countries into consideration. Instead, these programs usually reflect external, Western-imposed priorities. Western democracy-promoting organizations have often failed to appreciate the extent to which traditional institutions in Caspian societies (such as kinship networks) managed to survive the Soviet period and still influence the societies of the region. Western democracy-promoting organizations have failed to take into consideration the security challenges that Caspian states have had to confront during their first decade of independence. The war against global terrorism gives the West an opportunity to reevaluate its policies towards the Caspian region. Rather than relying solely on experiences of North American and Western European democracies, Western democracy-promoting organizations need to draw upon the recent experiences of new democracies of Central Europe in creating new models for the Caspian region.
  • Topic: Democratization
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Central Asia, Asia, Soviet Union, North America
  • Author: Duncan DeVille, Danielle Lussier, Melissa Carr, David Rekhviashvili, Annaliis Abrego, John Grennan
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Russian support for U.S. efforts in the war on terrorism has surprised many Western observers. But this was not the only recent surprise from Moscow — Western advocates for the rule of law in Russia also had much to celebrate in the closing months of 2001. Under strong prodding by President Vladimir Putin, the Duma passed several impressive pieces of reform legislation, including an entirely new Criminal Procedure Code, a potentially revolutionary land reform law, new shareholder protections in amendments to the Joint Stock Company Law, and the first post-Soviet Labor Code.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, Government
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Asia, Moscow
  • Author: Frank Upham
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: As governments and donor agencies struggle over questions of aid and international development, a growing consensus is emerging regarding the connections between poor governance and underdevelopment. An increasing number of initiatives, from the U.S. Millennium Challenge Account to the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD), explicitly link improving governance with pursuing sustainable development and poverty alleviation. Lack of pluralism and transparency, inefficient bureaucracies, and underdeveloped public institutions contribute to corruption, reduce governmental responsiveness to citizens' needs, stifle investment, and generally hamper social and economic development. A frequent donor favorite on the laundry list of “good governance” reforms advocated for developing countries is rule of law reform. The new development model contends that sustainable growth is impossible without the existence of the rule of law: a set of uniformly enforced, established legal regimes that clearly lays out the rules of the game.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Government
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States
  • Publication Date: 08-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: ICG's first report on Kyrgyzstan, published in August 2001, highlighted the potential for crisis facing the country. International attention was then rarely focused on Central Asia but since September 2001 the region has suddenly registered on policy-makers' agendas. Nearly 2,000 U.S. and Coalition troops are now located at Manas Airport near Bishkek, as part of the forces active in Afghanistan, and Kyrgyzstan is playing a key strategic role in the region. Stability in this country is now of fundamental concern to the international community but, since early 2002, it has declined sharply.
  • Topic: Democratization, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: With the continuing military campaign in Afghanistan, the international community has fundamentally shifted its policies toward Pakistan. The government of President Pervez Musharraf has been repeatedly praised as a key ally in the war against terrorism, and the U.S. alone has indicated that it will offer Pakistan more than one billion dollars in assistance. This briefing explores some of the most important dynamics underpinning the international community's revised approach to Pakistan and suggests that much of the conventional wisdom relies on dangerously faulty assumptions with important implications for future policy and regional security.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, War
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, South Asia
  • Author: James Sheptycki
  • Publication Date: 04-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
  • Abstract: This paper argues that democratic control of policing, transnational and otherwise, is problematic in the contemporary period because of the nature of the postmodern power system. It describes the parameters of the policing field and notes that its separate sectors have different ways of being accountable to different sets of interests. Further is describes the transnational policing regime as a global polycentric power system and argues that there is no point from which the policing field could be governed. The paper then describes policing at the 'hard edge of postmodernity' showing what is at stake. The paper advances a normative conception termed the 'constabulary ethic' and argues that this might provide a moral compass for the nascent transnational subculture of policing. The minimum social conditions necessary for the emergence of the constabulary ethic are described and the principles that provides its 'normative glue' are elucidated. The paper ends by citing some practical examples where something like the constabulary ethic has been achieved.
  • Topic: Security, Democratization, Globalization, International Law
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Morton H. Halperin, Paula Dobriansky, Paul Collier, Wayne Merry, Mark Palmer, Elizabeth Spiro Clark
  • Publication Date: 01-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for the Study of Diplomacy, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • Abstract: October 1, Mayor Rudy Guiliani told the UN Special Session on Terrorism “The best long term deterrent to terrorism . . . is the spread of our principles of freedom, democracy, the rule of law, and respect for human life. The more that spreads around the globe, the safer we will all be. These are very powerful ideas and once they gain a foothold, they cannot be stopped.” This forum on sustaining global democratization was planned well before September 11. However, the premise of our discussion is that the spread of democracy is now more important than ever in building a safe world.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Globalization
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Kazim Azimov
  • Publication Date: 06-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Melissa Carr: Many of you have met Kazim Azimov. He has been here since the end of April. He is in the United States on a program called the Junior Faculty Development Program, which brings faculty members from universities in countries of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe to the United States to train, study, develop curriculum materials, and teach. We at Harvard are fortunate that part way through Kazim's year at the University of Hawaii, we were able to arrange for him to come join us here, in part because the University of Hawaii went on strike.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Democratization, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Graham T. Allison, Emily Van Buskirk
  • Publication Date: 05-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: The date is July 1, 2001. Real world history and trends occurred as they did through March 19, 2001 — except for the hypothetical departures specified in the case below. Events after March 19 that are not specified in this case are assumed to be straight - line projections of events as they stand on March 19. Assume, for example, that sporadic violence continues in the Middle East at the current level of intensity; Britain and the U.S. are nearing the end of their review of UN sanctions against Iraq, and will soon make recommendations on refocusing the sanctions to make them “smarter”; as expected, Mohammad Khatami was reelected as President of Iran on June 8 with a mandate for continued reform; the price of oil is $25/barrel; events in Chechnya and Ukraine, and negotiations over Nagorno - Karabagh will continue as before.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Democratization, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Britain, Russia, United States, Iraq, Ukraine, Middle East, Asia, United Nations