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  • Author: Abiodun Alao
  • Publication Date: 06-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: Prior to the recent controversy over the transfer of arms, little international attention was devoted to Sierra Leone. Even its civil war, which is at the root of the matter, did not attract any significant attention outside West Africa, despite the fact that it had claimed nearly 50,000 lives. Although its enormous diamond deposits have always attracted some interest, this has been limited to private companies and individual entrepreneurs. Many Sierra Leoneans believe that had there been sustained concern about the predicament of their country, the entire arms controversy might have been avoided. This briefing paper does not, however, attempt to delve into the complexities surrounding the sale of arms to Sierra Leone and deals only tangentially with the role of mercenaries that has been the subject of so much scrutiny. Rather, it traces the major events leading to the civil war that began in March 1991, bringing with it immense suffering for this impoverished nation. This is a tale of intrigue and power struggles that has involved most of the West African region, and has allowed unscrupulous actors from as far afield as South Africa, Britain and the United States to dabble in the affairs of this country. It is a salutary lesson in the lack of concern about the fate of small nations in the post-Cold War era.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, South America
  • Author: George Joffé
  • Publication Date: 06-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The current situation in Algeria is the direct result of a crisis that developed in the wake of the country-wide riots in 1988 and appeared to have been resolved by political and economic reform up to 1992. Despite a brief period of political liberalization — which, in reality was unsuccessfully manipulated by the regime in power to guarantee its own survival — Algeria has been in the grip of a virtual civil war for the past five years. In these circumstances, the behaviour of the regime and of its clandestine opposition have become parallel experiences, despite the gestures towards renewed democratization made in the past two years. The reality for the vast majority of Algerians — with figures for civilian deaths to date ranging from 50,000 to 120,000— is one of constant fear, both of arbitrary arrest and worse from the authorities and of summary and terminal justice from the clandestine opposition. For these circumstances to be properly appreciated, therefore, some knowledge of the events leading up to the contemporary situation is necessary.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Algeria, Hiroshima
  • Author: Peter D. Sutherland
  • Publication Date: 10-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Overseas Development Council
  • Abstract: Good afternoon. Thank you, Sir Jeremy, for that kind introduction. I am honored, not merely to have been selected to deliver this year's Per Jacobsson lecture, but by the presence of so many distinguished guests. I am also delighted that two previous Per Jacobsson lecturers could be here this afternoon, and I would like to recognize them: Jacques de Larosiere, the former Managing Director of the IMF and more recently the President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and Joseph Yam, the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, Government, International Trade and Finance, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: William Minter
  • Publication Date: 03-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Africa Policy Information Center
  • Abstract: This paper was prepared by APIC Senior Research Fellow William Minter for the Constituency Builders' Dialogue organized by the Africa Policy Information Center, held at Airlie House, Warrenton, Virginia, over the weekend of January 10-12, 1997. The Dialogue was designed as an opportunity for a diverse group of activists from different sectors of Africa advocacy work in the United States to step back, reflect and engage in dialogue on the strategic directions for grassroots Africa constituency-building in the current period. The Dialogue was made possible by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and by ongoing support from the Ford Foundation.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, New York
  • Author: Pat Choate, Stuart Eizenstat
  • Publication Date: 09-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: September 29, 1997 Dr. LESLIE GELB: Good evening. Welcome to another in a series of Council on Foreign Relations great debates, which have been put together, advised, supported by a group of folks that I'd like to mention because they've worked with us so hard over the last couple of years doing these great debate programs, trying to bring more of the issues to you in the debating format and doing these policy impact hearings, these old-style congressional hearings where we try to prepare very carefully, to lay out a complicated set of facts and some policy alternatives.
  • Topic: Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Miquel Ángel Valverde
  • Publication Date: 01-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: In June 1990, President George Bush and Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari announced their intention to begin negotiating a free trade agreement. Canada joined the negotiations the following August. The proposed North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) provoked an intense lobbying campaign in the US Congress, in what became a major political battle for its congressional approval. Some economic interests would win, others would lose with NAFTA. Congress members were worried about the loss of American low-skilled jobs and environmental issues. Regional interests were voiced loudly in the House of Representatives. A loose coalition of interest groups, including the AFL-CIO, public interest groups, and environmental organizations, coordinated opposition to the agreement. On the pro-NAFTA side was an ad hoc group of corporations, labeled USA-NAFTA, which included the National Association of Manufacturers and the US Chamber of Commerce. The Mexican government mounted an extensive lobbying campaign in favor of the trade pact. After intense congressional lobbying, President Bush obtained fast-track negotiating authority for NAFTA. Negotiations concluded in August 1992, and the following December, Presidents Bush and Salinas, as well as Canada's Prime Minister Mulroney, signed the pact, Presidential candidate Bill Clinton, under intense pressure from key constituencies of the Democratic Party, supported NAFTA "in principle," but only if complementary agreements on labor and environmental issues were included. Once in the office, Clinton negotiated these "side agreements" with Mexico and Canada, but still, strong opposition to NAFTA continued. In order to win congressional votes needed for the pact's approval, President Clinton engaged in a series of political compromises or "side-payments" with legislators, being able to form a congressional bipartisan coalition that allowed NAFTA passage.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Canada, North America, Mexico
  • Author: Miguel Angel Valverde
  • Publication Date: 01-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: The objective of this paper is to discuss some concepts and review relevant literature on interest groups in the United States, in order to provide a broad guide to the study of the topic. It aims to explore the main questions raised by their presence in the political arena as well as suggest some themes for future research.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: David Held
  • Publication Date: 05-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies
  • Abstract: One of the most conspicuous features of politics at the turn of the millennium is the emergence of issues which transcend national frontiers. Processes of economic internationalization, the problem of the environment and the emergence of regional and global networks of communication are increasingly matters of concern for the international community as a whole. The nature and limits of national democracies have to be reconsidered in relation to processes of social and economic globalization; that is, in relation to shifts in the transcontinental or interregional scale of human social organization and of the exercise of social power. This paper seeks to explore these changing circumstances and to examine, albeit tentatively, their implications for democratic theory.
  • Topic: Democratization, Globalization, Politics
  • Author: Grzegorz Ekiert, Jan Kubik
  • Publication Date: 10-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for European Studies at Cornell University
  • Abstract: The paper argues that a robust and assertive civil society has emerged in post-communist Poland during the first few years following the fall of state socialism. Civil society is defined as a specific social space and a set of specific social organizations. The most important factors shaping the character of this renewed civil society are the patterns of its institutionalization after 1989, the predominance of organizations inherited from the old regime, and the marginality of anti-systemic groups. The institutional patterns are shaped by the sectoral composition of the new civil society, the relationships among its various organizations, and by these organizations' links to such collective actors/institutions as political parties and state agencies. These patterns influence the quality of political participation and democratic performance.
  • Topic: Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Mordechai Abir
  • Publication Date: 09-1997
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
  • Abstract: The stability of Saudi Arabia (and the Persian Gulf as a whole) is crucially important to the world's industrial countries. According to the Gulf Center of Strategic Studies, "oil is expected to account for 38 percent of all the world consumption of energy until 2015, compared to 39 percent in 1993. Increasing world-wide demand for oil, now about 74 million barrels per day, is projected to rise by 2015 to about 110 million" (Gulf Report, London, July 1997). Over 60 percent of the world's proven oil reserves are located in the Persian Gulf, and Saudi Arabia alone controls 25 percent of the total.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Foreign Policy, Economics, Energy Policy, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Saudi Arabia
  • Author: Jacob M. Landau
  • Publication Date: 02-1997
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
  • Abstract: When Mustafa Kamal (Ataturk) founded the Republic of Turkey in 1923 (he was its president until his death fifteen years later), he set as his main objective the modernization of the new republic. His preferred means was speedy, intensive secularization and, indeed, every one of his reforms was tied up with disestablishing other Islamic institutions from their hold on Turkey's politics, economics, society, and cultural life.
  • Topic: Government, Islam, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 11-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Africa Policy Information Center
  • Abstract: Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation, was a pioneer in the movement for African independence. In past centuries, its territory was home to a series of powerful and technically-advanced societies, renowned for their artistic, commercial, and political achievements.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Ethnic Conflict, Government, Nationalism, Politics
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria
  • Author: David J. Vidal
  • Publication Date: 05-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: In the architecture of postwar American foreign policy, the twin themes of the Cold War and the national interest emerge as unshakable pillars. In the design of the conference, one session was set aside to explore the practical and political meanings of these themes for minorities. Conferees were asked to consider how Cold War foreign policy priorities intersected with minority concerns. They were also asked to assess whether the declaration made by Hans J. Morgenthau --that "we should have one guiding standard for thought and action, the national interest"--was a useful benchmark. These two points of departure struck the organizers as indispensable to any rethinking of the future.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Paul Pierson
  • Publication Date: 11-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for German and European Studies, University of California, Berkeley
  • Abstract: Many European and American observers of the EC have criticized "intergovernmentalist" accounts for exaggerating the extent of member state control over the process of European integration. This essay seeks to ground these criticisms in a historical institutionalist" account that stresses the need to study European integration as a political process which unfolds over time. Such a perspective highlights the limits of member state control over long-term institutional development. Losses of control result from member state preoccupation with short-term concerns, the ubiquity of unintended consequences, and processes that "lock in" past decisions and make reassertions of member state authority difficult. Brief examination of the evolution of EC social policy suggests the limitations of treating the EC as an institutional "instrument" facilitating collective action among sovereign states. It is more useful to view integration as a path-dependent process that has produced a fragmented but still discernible multi-tiered European polity.
  • Topic: International Organization, Politics, Sovereignty
  • Political Geography: America, Europe
  • Author: Yagil Levy
  • Publication Date: 01-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Studies of Social Change
  • Abstract: Wars produce contrasting effects on the state's status in the domestic arena: they bolster its internal control but, at the same time, create opportunities for collective action of which domestic groups can take advantage and weaken state autonomy. As the case of Israel suggests, within the confines of geo-political constraints, states modify their military doctrine to balance the two contradictory impacts. The main purpose of the paper is to lay the foundation for a Sociology of Strategy by drawing on the case of Israel.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Jesus Velasco
  • Publication Date: 01-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: The classification of current political tendencies in the United States is sometimes confusing. Since the beginning of Ronald Reagan's first presidential campaign, American journalists and scholars have used indistinctly terms like right, conservatism, neoconservatism, ultraconservatism, extreme right, New Right, etc., to define the different political forces behind Reagan's ascent to the White House. This confusion is evident in the work of John Judis. He believes that Kevin Phillips (a conservative scholar), Paul Weyrich (a New Right activist), Irving Kristol (a neoconservative leader), and William Buckley (a traditional conservative), could all be embraced within the term "conservative" without considering any differences in their theoretical and political position.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: Alexander A. Sergounin
  • Publication Date: 07-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The end of the Cold War, the collapse of the USSR and its Marxist ideology, and the re-emergence of the Russian Federation as a separate, independent entity have compelled Russia to redefine its national interests and make major adjustments in the spheres of both foreign policy and international relations theory (IRT). These enormous tasks, together with an attendant polarisation of opinion on how to deal with them, have pitted Russia's policy makers and experts against one another in a fierce battle of world views. This debate is far from at an end. Neither a new security identity nor a coherent foreign policy strategy have yet been found.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Environment, Government, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: G. John Ikenberry, Daniel Deudney
  • Publication Date: 05-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Christopher H. Browne Center for International Politics, University of Pennsylvania
  • Abstract: The end of the Cold War has triggered new debates about international relations theory. Most of the attention has been focused on explaining the end of the Cold War. Equally important, however, this epochal development raises new questions about the impact of forty years of East-West rivalry on the relations among the Western liberal democracies. This issue is not simply of passing historical interest because it bears on our expectations about the future trajectory of relations among the great powers in the West. Will the end of the Cold War lead to the decline of cooperative relations among the Western liberal democracies? Will major Western political institutions, such as NATO and the U.S.-Japanese alliance, fall apart? Will "semi-sovereign" Germany and Japan revert to traditional great power status? Will the United States return to its traditional isolationist posture? Our answers to these questions depend upon the sources of Western order: was the Cold War the primary cause of Western solidarity or does the West have a distinctive and robust political order that predated and paralleled the Cold War?
  • Topic: International Relations, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Europe, Germany
  • Author: Jon Faust, John S. Irons
  • Publication Date: 11-1996
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: While macroeconometricians continue to dispute the size, timing, and even the existence of effects of monetary policy, political economists often find large effects of political variables and often attribute the effects to manipulation of the Fed. Since the political econometricians often use smaller information sets and less elaborate approaches to identification than do macroeconometricians, their striking results could be the result of simultaneity and omitted variable biases. Alternatively, political whims may provide the instrument for exogenous policy changes that has been the Grail of the policy identification literature. In this paper, we lay out and apply a framework for distinguishing these possibilities. We find almost no support for the hypothesis that political effects on the macroeconomy operate through monetary policy and only weak evidence that political effects are significant at all.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Political Economy, Politics
  • Author: Robert A. Pastor
  • Publication Date: 03-1995
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Carter Center
  • Abstract: Independent candidates and representatives from 27 political parties contested more than 2,000 municipal and Parliamentary postions in elections in Haiti on June 25, 1995. In the pre-election period, the Provisional Election Council (CEP) judged the qualifications of nearly 12,000 candidates, and disqualified about one thousand without explanations. The process was so prolonged and contentious that the ballots had to be changed up to the last days, and there were numerous mistakes. The CEP's erratic performance led three parties to boycott the election, and virtually all to question the CEP's judgment and independence. The unresponsiveness of the CEP to legitimate complaints raised by the political parties sowed seeds of distrust in the electoral process.
  • Topic: Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United Nations, Latin America, Caribbean