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  • Author: Anna Bocharnikova
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: This article investigates the dynamics of individual economic well‐​being in Estonia and Finland over three periods: (1) 1923–1938, when both countries were similarly situated; (2) 1960–1988, during which Estonia was under Soviet control; and (3) 1992–2018, after Estonian independence. Economic well‐​being is calculated using the purchasing power of wages in terms of the affordability of a minimal food basket. The results show that, in 1938, the purchasing power of wages in Estonia was 4 percent lower than in Finland; in 1988, it was 42 percent lower; and, by 2018, the gap had fallen to 17 percent. Consequently, as measured by the purchasing power of wages, well‐​being in Estonia and Finland was similar before the Soviet occupation, widely diverged during Soviet rule, and converged after Estonian independence, with the transition from plan to market.
  • Topic: Economics, Markets, Politics, History, Culture
  • Political Geography: Europe, Finland, Estonia
  • Author: George S. Tavlas
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: During the fall of 2009, George Papandreou headed the ticket of the Panhellenic Socialist Movement, known by its acronym PASOK, against the then‐​governing conservative party, New Democracy, in the Greek national elections. Papandreou ran on a platform that featured highly expansive fiscal spending. During a press conference on September 13, 2009, he was asked where he would find the money to fund his party’s spending proposals. His answer was that given in the above quotation, by which he meant that Greece had abundant fiscal space to increase government spending; he believed that tax revenues could be sharply raised through stricter enforcement of laws against tax evasion. On October 4, PASOK won a landslide electoral victory, garnering 43.9 percent of the popular vote, compared with 33.5 percent for the second‐​place, incumbent New Democracy party, with the result that Papandreou became Greece’s prime minister. In the following months, a sovereign‐​debt crisis erupted in Greece that, within a year, engulfed much of the euro area through contagion. In November 2011, Papandreou resigned the premiership, becoming the first Greek prime minister in almost 50 years to be forced out of office by his own cabinet. An article in the Financial Times, reporting on his ouster, stated: “George Papandreou will be remembered by Greeks with more than a trace of bitterness as the man who smilingly declared ‘the money’s there’ ” (Hope 2011). In the next Greek elections, held in June 2012, PASOK won only 12.3 percent of the vote.
  • Topic: Monetary Policy, Conservatism, Political Parties, Socialism
  • Political Geography: Europe, Greece
  • Author: Jesús Fernández‐​Villaverde
  • Publication Date: 06-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The monetary arrangements of societies are the result of the interplay of technology and ideas. Technology determines, for example, which coins can be minted and at what cost. For centuries, minting small‐​denomination coinage was too costly to induce Western European governments to supply enough small change (Sargent and Velde 2002). Only the arrival of steam‐​driven presses fixed this problem (Doty 1998). Simultaneously, ideas about private property and the scope of government determined whether private entrepreneurs were allowed to compete with governments in the supply of small change (Selgin 2008). Technology and ideas about money engage dialectically. Technological advances shape our ideas about money by making new monetary arrangements feasible. Ideas about desirable outcomes direct innovators to develop new technologies.
  • Topic: Economics, Science and Technology, Monetary Policy, Cryptocurrencies
  • Political Geography: Europe, Global Focus
  • Author: Peter Liberman
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: By showing that mass vengefulness helps democratic leaders bring their nations to war, this wonderful book significantly advances our understanding of how cultural values affect international politics. Its most important contribution is demonstrating that democracies that retain death penalty laws were significant more likely to initiate the use of force than non-death-penalty democracies in the 1945–2001 period. The finding is robust to a variety of control variables and specifications, although skeptics may wonder whether it might be inflated by ethnocentrism, beliefs about the utility of violence, or other unmeasured potential covariates. Rachel Stein attributes the belligerence of death penalty states to cross-national differences in vengeful cultures, on the grounds that citizens’ vengefulness predicts both cross-sectional support for the death penalty and cross-national differences in the penalty’s retention. Her rigorous analysis greatly strengthens the case that the unusual bellicosity of retributivists, observed by Stein and other researchers, affects actual interstate conflict.
  • Topic: War, Prisons/Penal Systems, Leadership, Book Review, Elites, Capital Punishment
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, United States of America
  • Author: Zach Weinberg
  • Publication Date: 05-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Public and International Affairs (JPIA)
  • Institution: School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University
  • Abstract: Certain features of U.S. export controls fail to reflect the immediate threat from East Asia and the emerging threat from Europe as it relates to the theft of American defense and dual-use technologies. While both the Obama and Trump administrations made a concerted effort to better regulate the commercial sale and shipment of technologies deemed sensitive for reasons of national security, one critical component of the export controls regime—the U.S. Department of Commerce (USDOC) country-specific export control licensing requirements—has yet to be revised to account for European and East Asian industrial espionage. Imposing the most export licensing requirements on average to countries in Europe and East Asia would accurately account for the persistent attempts to illicitly acquire U.S. defense technologies. Instead, countries in the Near East and South and Central Asia are, on average, assigned the most reasons for control listed on the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) Commerce Country Chart (CCC)—likely a carry-on objective from the U.S. Global War on Terror (GWOT) when military operations were heavily focused on these regions. Furthermore, BIS imposes a blanket set of export controls on countries throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, failing to recognize the varying risk profiles posed by different African states. These misallocated export controls demonstrate how specific trade barriers fail to move beyond an outdated GWOT mentality and result in over-regulating the Near East, South and Central Asia, and Africa. The following paper proposes the need for a thorough review of the CCC to ensure that it accurately reflects a country’s current risk profile and takes into consideration the consistent industrial espionage threat from East Asia and the emerging threat from Europe. As a result of this type of export control reform, there would be a relaxation of licensing requirements levied on regions that show little interest in illicitly procuring American defense technologies.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Science and Technology, Exports, Hybrid Threats
  • Political Geography: Europe, East Asia, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Sergey Naryshkin
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: Seeking to ensure their national interests, states have traditionally taken advantage of opportunities offered by what is known as intelli- gence diplomacy, involving official bilateral or multilateral collaboration between foreign intelligence services. Foreign intelligence services have accumulated considerable experi- ence in working together in various areas, and this applies not only to allied countries. this experience conclusively proves that partnership makes it possible to solve many problems – those related to intelligence and those outside the bounds of “classic” intelligence operations. the experience of Russia’s foreign intelligence service, which is cur- rently marking its 100th anniversary, is interesting and instructive. Created on December 20, 1920, the Foreign Department of the Cheka, the original predecessor of Russia’s foreign intelligence services (the Foreign Department-the First Main Directorate-the SVR), established first official contacts with several intelligence services of other countries. Fair partnership agreements at that time were signed on the initiative of other countries’ intelligence services. this clearly shows that right from the start Russia’s intelligence service had a reputation as a strong, useful and reliable partner.
  • Topic: Security, Intelligence, International Cooperation, Spy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Edward J. Erickson
  • Publication Date: 02-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Unlike the British or the Americans, the Turks do not officially designate or name military campaigns in their official histories. This article presents the author’s appraisal of which operations might be considered as the Ottoman army’s campaigns in the First World War. The Ottomans fought a large number of operations and battles in the war but an analysis of these in terms of defining them at the operational level is absent from the extant historiography. The article also presents an appraisal of the various offensive and defensive campaigns that the Ottoman army conducted in the First World War as well as identifying a new vocabulary that distinguishes the army’s deliberate campaigns from its campaigns of opportunity and expediency.
  • Topic: Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Conflict, World War I
  • Political Geography: Europe, Asia, Ottoman Empire
  • Author: Amund Osflaten
  • Publication Date: 02-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: This article examines the Russian strategic culture after the Cold War. That is, what perspective on the use of military force is guiding the Russian strategic community? It compares Russian conflict behavior in the 1999 Second Chechen War, the 2008 Russo-Georgian War, and the 2014 Russian Invasion of Crimea to find systematic components of Russian strategic culture. Consequently, this analysis systematically describes the development of Russian conflict behavior after the Cold War and elucidate the underlying and persistent Russian strategic culture. The analysis points to a continuing emphasis on conventional forces. Moreover, the employment of conventional force is enabled by peacetime preparations, and then deception and secrecy in the initial period of the conflict.
  • Topic: Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Post Cold War, Strategic Planning
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Giuliano Bifolchi
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: Terrorism and jihadist propaganda are among the primary threats of the contemporary era. Because of the high number of foreign fighters from the post-Soviet republics among the rank of the Islamic State, there is a general concern about jihadist propaganda in the Russian language. Kavkazcenter has appeared as one of the main websites in the Russian language to support Imarat Kavkaz (Caucasus Emirate) and regional militant groups. Firstly, this paper examines scientific literature useful to classify Kavkazcenter as a jihadist portal or a media agency. Secondly, the research focuses on the website Kavkazcenter investigating its structure, ideologies and connection with the Arab-Muslim world and the international terrorist network. Finally, this investigation intends to describe if Kavkazcenter represents a serious threat not only for the Russian national security but also for the entire post- Soviet space and the European Union itself, where North Caucasian migrants and refugees live.
  • Topic: Terrorism, Violent Extremism, Propaganda, Jihad
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Post-Soviet Europe
  • Author: Billy Agwanda
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: During the last two decades, key reforms in social, economic, and political structures have elevated Turkey into a rising regional power. In the Middle East, the increasing influence of Turkey for a better part of the last two decades has been reinforced by its humanitarian oriented foreign policy. Whereas this transformation is extensively attributed to the reform agenda by the Justice and Development Party (AKP), the last decade has proved to be challenging for Turkey’s foreign policy stance. Regional dynamics, such as the Syrian civil war, Qatar crisis, and the Kurdish question, have influenced Turkey to gradually shift from its previous subtle to a more assertive foreign policy. Additionally, the frequent domestic political challenges and economic pressure on the AKP government have only pushed Turkey further towards a more assertive Middle East foreign policy. This article examines how regional and domestic political developments are influencing Turkish foreign policy approach. The analysis will attempt to provide a comprehensive perspective on why Turkish geopolitical engagement and an increasingly assertive foreign policy that is characterised by unilateralism particularly in the pursuit of national and regional security is leading to its isolation.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Domestic politics, Strategic Interests
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Bayram Gungor
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: The relationship among the FDI, GDP and Export has gained vast attention among the researchers and policy-makers. There are many studies on the interaction of these variables using various econometric approaches in the literature. However, it has seen that the findings have been different from country by country. Therefore, this study's main problematic is to estimate the coefficients that show the interaction among the FDI, GDP and Export covering 1980-2019 in Turkey. The ARDL Bounds Model and Granger Causality approach were selected to measure the coefficients statistically. Three models were executed to calculate the short-run and long-run coefficients. While the Model 1 and Model 3 were found statistically significant to explain the dependent variables, the Model 2 was found statistically insignificant. Because of this, the Model 2 was excluded from the study. The short- run coefficients were also found statistically significant to explain the dependent variables of the Model 1 and Model 3. While GDP affects the FDI positively in Model 1, GDP affects the Export negatively in Model 2. The ECT was found statistically significant at 0.01. The speeds of adjustment of the Model 1 and Model 3 were calculated as approximately 93% and 16% levels, respectively. Unlike the ARDL Bounds Model, the Granger Causality test was implemented to measure the variables' causal relationship. It was seen that there is only a unidirectional Granger causal relationship running from GDP to FDI in the Model 1 and from GDP to Export in the Model 2.
  • Topic: Economics, Foreign Direct Investment, GDP, Exports
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Ayhan Kaya
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: Immigration, foreign policy and international relations have become embedded fields of study over the last few decades. There is a growing stream of research stressing how foreign policy impacts international migration, and how past migration flows impact foreign policy. This article reveals how the Justice and Development Party government in Turkey has leveraged migration as a tool in international relations. Based on the application of the findings of three different Horizon 2020 research projects, this article will depict the ways in which various domestic and international political drivers have so far impacted Turkey’s migration policy and relationship with the EU.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Migration, Immigration, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: M. Murat Erdoğan
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: The number of refugees in Turkey exceeded 4 million in a short period of time due to the civil war in Syria, and Turkey has become the country hosting the largest number of refugees from 2014 onwards. The concerns of Turkish society, which portrayed an extraordinary solidarity initially, have become apparent in terms of refugees, almost all of whom live side-by-side with Turkish society in urban areas. This paper is based on a comprehensive and representative research data about Turkish citizens’ attitudes towards Syrian refugees. This study critically analyses traditional securitisation studies and instead puts forward the concepts of the “securitization from society” and “social acceptance” to be able to analyse the views of Turkish public towards Syrian refugees .
  • Topic: Security, Refugees, Refugee Crisis, Humanitarian Crisis
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia, Syria
  • Author: Zeynep Sahin Mencutek, N. Ela Gokalp Aras, Bezen Balamir Coşkun
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: Migration studies have seldom dealt with the foreign policy dimensions of refugee migration. Additionally, international relations (IR) theories have barely addressed migration policy. The present study seeks to address this gap by analysing Turkey’s response to Syrian mass migration through the lens of neoclassical realist theory. Its purpose is to ascertain to what extent IR theories, particularly neoclassical realism, help us to understand Turkey’s policies and politics addressing Syrian mass migration and changes over time. It questions the pertinence of Turkey’s relative power and its foreign policy objectives in shaping responses to Syrian mass migration. The research also sheds much-needed light not only on dynamism in power-policy relations but also interaction between the international system and internal dynamics in designing migration policies. It aims to stimulate dialogue between IR theories and migration studies, with a particular focus on the foreign policy dimension of state responses to mass refugee migration.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Migration, Refugees
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Asia, Syria
  • Author: Haci Halil Uslucan, Martina Sauer
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: This article analyses the political participation of Turkish migrants in Germany within a transnational context. This issue is highly eminent for democracy and integration and it constitutes the fundamentals of political sovereignty. Therefore, explaining the diverse political mindsets as well as the grade of interest and participation in political issues is of high importance. This article analyses the findings of the empirical study conducted with Turkish migrants in Germany focussing on their political interests and party preferences in both countries. The survey results show at first higher interest for political processes in Turkey than in Germany; but with rising legal participation, higher citizenship rights and higher education, the interest for German politics increases. But however, throughout the different groups, a transnational orientation is the main observable factor. The apparent contradiction of the party preferences (in Germany more left wing oriented parties, in Turkey more conservative-religious parties) can be explained with pragmatic setting of priorities.
  • Topic: Immigration, transnationalism, Political Parties, Participation
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Giray Sadik, Ceren Kaya
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: This study offers critical analysis on the role of surveillance technologies in the securitization of migration policies and the impact of such practices on the EU’s international identity. The EU member states have adopted various technological instruments that have serious consequences both for the course of the EU’s migration policies and its normative international identity. The findings of this research suggest that by securitizing its migration policies through new surveillance technologies, the EU may risk violating its founding norms and principles. These violations are, in turn, likely to have serious political repercussions for the global image and credibility of the EU in the years to come.
  • Topic: Migration, Science and Technology, European Union, Surveillance, Borders
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Fatma Yilmaz-Elmas
  • Publication Date: 01-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: Addressing a close relationship between the EU’s role as a global actor and migration management, this article covers the 2016 EU-Turkey migration deal and endeavors to go beyond simple criticism of its efficiency. Following a review of the relevant literature and critical analysis of recent migration management process, interviews with field experts and policymakers were utilized to assess the policy dilemmas of the EU’s approach to the pressure from migration. The pressure the EU has long been experiencing is not a challenge that can be solved by asymmetric cooperation with third countries, characterized by an ignorance of divergences in perceptions and expectations. This may have subsequent impact on the EU’s enlargement policy and thereby on the stability of the region.
  • Topic: Migration, Regional Cooperation, European Union, Refugee Crisis
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Christopher Zambakari
  • Publication Date: 04-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Conflict Trends
  • Institution: The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD)
  • Abstract: Imperial powers such as Rome, Persia, Japan and China have justified their conquests as a benefit to those that were conquered by virtue of bringing a superior civilisation to their world.[1] Among imperial powers, one of the most strident were the Second and Third French Republics.[2] The civilising mission – or what French historian Raoul Girardet refers to as “colonial humanism”[3] – came to define French colonial statecraft in the early 19th century crusade to improve the lives of people who France saw as backward in Asia, Africa and the Pacific. For intellectuals such as Leroy-Beaulieu, civilisation was to be spread through commerce, trade and exchanges between people, rather than through conquest.[4] By the early 1800s, the republican ideals that inspired the French Revolution were slowly abandoned for a more forceful assimilationist policy exemplified by colonial expansionist policies. According to Jules Brévié, governor-general of French West Africa from 1930 to 1936 and of French Indochina from 1936 to 1939, the most important task for the French was to bring about a cultural renaissance to the indigenous people.[5] Brévié called for a redefined mission with a focus on teaching colonised subjects to live according to “authentic African traditions”.[6] As with the British before them, French policy adapted to the local context and shifted towards a more “indirect mode of rule”,[7] casting foreign rule as the protectors of indigenous cultures. This article analyses the French imperial project in Africa, with a focus on the Federation of French West Africa (consisting of today’s Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal). It outlines differences and similarities between the French mode of direct rule and the British mode of indirect rule. To understand the methodology of rule, one must first understand the system of knowledge production that informed, shaped and guided the colonial project. A policy change occurred after the French experienced a crisis of empire, which ushered in fundamental transformations before World War I (1909 and 1912) and the interwar years between 1918 and 1939 (from “assimilation” to that of “association”). The new policy shifted the focus from antagonism towards Islam to collaboration with Islamic representatives, from civilisations to conservation, from a focus on progress to law and order, and a preoccupation with local customs while managing social and cultural differences (pluralism).[8] This article is offered as an important contribution to the political and intellectual history of the largest colonial state in Africa: the Federation of French West Africa.
  • Topic: Imperialism, Intellectual History, Colonialism, Assimilation , Customs
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, France, Senegal, Mali, Guinea, Mauritania, Côte d'Ivoire, Niger, Burkina Faso, Benin
  • Author: Inga B. Kuźma
  • Publication Date: 03-2021
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Nowa Polityka Wschodnia
  • Institution: Faculty of Political Science and International Studies, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
  • Abstract: In the second decade of the 21st century, the Middle Kingdom, which had huge financial surpluses, became the world’s largest exporter of money capital, which meant that investment policy became the main element of China’s foreign policy. In the case of Central and Eastern Europe, the 16+1 (17+1) format, containing both investment policy and soft power elements, has become the basic tool of the general policy of Middle Kingdom. Th is article aims to define the basic principles of China’s policy towards Central and Eastern Europe. For this purpose, the following general hypothesis was formulated: Chinese policy in Central and Eastern Europe consists of presenting the countries of this region with initiatives that do not go beyond the sphere of declarations and serve as a bargaining chip in relations with Germany, the country with the greatest potential in the European Union. The general hypothesis gives rise to detailed hypotheses that were verified in individual parts of the article with the use of the comparative method. Th e reasons most oft en mentioned in the literature on the subject, such as economic, cultural, social, and political differentiation of Central and Eastern European countries, legal barriers resulting from EU legislation, insufficient recognition of the region’s needs by the Chinese side and asymmetry of expectations of both parties, undoubtedly largely contribute to the lack of effective Sino-CEE cooperation. However, they cannot be considered decisive because similar problems occur wherever Chinese companies appear. However, in many regions of the world, despite these obstacles, mutual economic relations are more dynamic than in CEE. Th e reasons why the potential of the 16+1 (17+1) format has not been properly used can be found primarily in the context of German-Chinese relations.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, International Cooperation, European Union, Economy
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia, Germany, Central Europe
  • Author: Steve H. Hanke
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Monetary instability poses a threat to free societies. Indeed, currency instability, banking crises, soaring inflation, sovereign debt defaults, and economic booms and busts all have a common source: monetary instability. Furthermore, all these ills induced by monetary instability bring with them calls for policy changes, many of which threaten free societies. One who understood this simple fact was Karl Schiller, who was the German Finance Minister from 1966 until 1972. Schiller’s mantra was clear and uncompromising: “Stability is not everything, but without stability, everything is nothing” (Marsh 1992: 30). Well, Schiller’s mantra is my mantra. I offer three regime changes that would enhance the stability in what Jacques de Larosière (2014) has asserted is an international monetary “anti-system.” First, the U.S. dollar and the euro should be formally, loosely linked together. Second, most central banks in developing countries should be mothballed and replaced by currency boards. Third, private currency boards should be permitted to enter the international monetary sphere.
  • Topic: Debt, Foreign Exchange, Monetary Policy, Developing World, Inflation, Currency
  • Political Geography: Europe, United States of America, European Union
  • Author: Michael D Bordo, Mickey D. Levy
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The ratcheting up of tariffs and the Fed’s discretionary conduct of monetary policy are a toxic mix for economic performance. Escalating tariffs and President Trump’s erratic and unpredictable trade policy and threats are harming global economic performance, distorting monetary policy, and undermining the Fed’s credibility and independence. President Trump’s objectives to force China to open access to its markets for international trade, reduce capital controls, modify unfair treatment of intellectual property, and address cybersecurity issues and other U.S. national security issues are laudable goals with sizable benefits. However, the costs of escalating tariffs are mounting, and the tactic of relying exclusively on barriers to trade and protectionism is misguided and potentially dangerous. The economic costs to the United States so far have been relatively modest, dampening exports, industrial production, and business investment. However, the tariffs and policy uncertainties have had a significantly larger impact on China, accentuating its structural economic slowdown, and are disrupting and distorting global supply chains. This is harming other nations that have significant exposure to international trade and investment overseas, particularly Japan, South Korea, and Germany. As a result, global trade volumes and industrial production are falling. Weaker global growth is reflected in a combination of a reduction in aggregate demand and constraints on aggregate supply.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Monetary Policy, Economic Growth, Tariffs, Industry
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Europe, Asia, South Korea, Germany, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Fredrik N. G. Anderson, Lars Jonung
  • Publication Date: 10-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Interest rates declined in the wake of the 2007–2009 global financial crisis. They remained low for most of the 2010s, only rising modestly toward the end of the decade. In some European countries, interest rates even became negative. While limited to a few countries initially, the likelihood of more central banks following suit is growing in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Not least, the Federal Reserve System is under pressure to adopt a negative federal funds rate (Bernanke 2020; Lilley and Rogoff 2020).
  • Topic: Monetary Policy, Interest Rates, Central Bank
  • Political Geography: Europe, Sweden
  • Author: Elizabeth R. Nugent
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: The economic decline of the Muslim world and the rise of Western Europe has long captured the attention of scholars across disciplines. Explanations largely focus either on Islam, whether its financial institutions or the essence of its teachings, or on Western colonialism as the culprit. In Islam, Authoritarianism, and Underdevelopment, Ahmet T. Kuru puts forward a new explanation rooted in class relations. He takes issue with existing approaches, convincingly demonstrating the intellectual and economic vibrancy of the Muslim world between the eighth and twelfth centuries, undermining arguments about Islam’s incompatibility with progress, and asserting that colonialism occurred too late to explain multiple political and socioeconomic crises. Instead, Kuru identifies the eleventh century as a critical juncture when the Muslim world witnessed the emergence of alliances between Islamic scholars (ulema; singular alim) and the military. These alliances persisted through path dependence and gradually hindered intellectual and economic creativity by marginalizing independent intellectual and bourgeois classes in the Muslim world. In turn, the absence of these classes led to the persistence of authoritarianism and the well-documented underdevelopment in the contemporary period.
  • Topic: Development, Islam, History, Authoritarianism, Book Review, Political Science
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, North Africa
  • Author: Dawn Langan Teele
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: David A. Bateman’s new book explores nearly all of the crucial questions concerning democracy and inclusion that we are grappling with today, from the very broad—how do the ways in which we think about the origins of our nation inform the welcoming or hostile attitudes we assume in relation to immigrants and outsiders?—to the very narrow—do requirements that voters present physical documents verifying their identity reduce the electoral participation of minority groups? In answering these questions, Bateman offers a detailed portrait of the political machinations that result in electoral reforms, describing elites’ efforts to blur lines between expediency and morality and the circumstances that led conservative parties (the same that today seek to abolish laws that give special status to protected classes of people) to work hard to establish and maintain legal provisions that awarded different rights to different groups. Fundamentally, Bateman explains why steps toward inclusive democratic institutions are often accompanied by steps back, which leave us uncertain of our accomplishments and anxious about our future. Remarkably, though, Disenfranchising Democracy considers these familiar dynamics and dilemmas not in the contemporary world but in the rather distant past, drawing on a wealth of archival sources to analyze the timing of electoral reforms, the emergence and ossification of party- based patterns of support for franchise reform, and the political ideas of would-be reformers and resisters in three of the world’s first semidemocratic countries: the United States, the United Kingdom, and France.
  • Topic: History, Elections, Democracy, Book Review, Political Science
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe, France, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Emma Lamberton
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Public and International Affairs (JPIA)
  • Institution: School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University
  • Abstract: Ukrainian surrogacy companies now hold over a quarter of the global surrogacy market since a series of human rights violations caused India, Thailand, and Nepal to close their borders. Similar violations are occurring in Ukraine, including the abandonment and trafficking of children and the abuse of surrogates. The Ukrainian government is not taking action, despite concerns expressed by both lawmakers and surrogates that the industry engages in unethical practices. This paper proposes that the Hague Conference’s Experts’ Group on the Parentage/Surrogacy Project spearhead international ratification of a holistic series of policies focused on protecting women and children from exploitation.
  • Topic: International Relations, Children, Women, International Development, Human Trafficking
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Asia, Eurasia, Ukraine
  • Author: Michael McFaul
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: President-elect Joseph R. Biden has an opportunity to forge a bipartisan, sustained grand U.S. strategy for Russia. With decades of experience in foreign affairs, especially transatlantic relations, he knows Russia, he knows Vladimir Putin and, equally important, he knows the region. When I worked at the National Security Council during the Barack Obama administration, I traveled with then-Vice President Biden to Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova and Russia. Unlike his immediate predecessor, President Biden rightfully will not try to befriend Putin. He and his expert team of foreign policy advisors understand that the central objective in U.S. policy towards Russia today is to contain Putin’s belligerent behavior abroad. At the same time, the incoming Biden administration offers the U.S. a chance to develop a more predictable pattern of bilateral relations with the Russian government and Russian people, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike. After relations with China, competing with Russia is the second-greatest foreign policy challenge of our time, complicated by the fact that China and Russia today are closer to each other now than they were during the Cold War. To successfully achieve American objectives will require the implementation of a comprehensive, sophisticated and nuanced strategy for containing Putin’s belligerent actions abroad and simultaneously cooperating with Moscow on a small set of issues of mutual benefit.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Conflict, Transatlantic Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Greg Delawie
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in 2008, is the most pro-American country in the world. From 2012 to 2013, it was also the world’s per-capita biggest source of foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) in Syria. It would seem those two statements could not possibly both be true, but they are. This is the story of how the professional diplomats at the U.S. Embassy in Pristina, aided by experts from the United States, played a major role in helping the new country bring the FTF problem under control for our mutual benefit. Between 2012 (when the Syrian civil war started) and 2016, more than 300 Kosovo citizens went to fight with al-Nusra, or ISIS. U.N. Development Program analysts who interviewed FTFs identified two categories of reasons for this phenomenon: “push factors” and “pull factors.” Among the push factors were Kosovo’s poverty, weak rule of law (enabling porous borders), corruption and high unemployment, especially among the young (60%, compared to 30% overall, in a population with 50% age 25 or younger). The pull factors were more complicated: After the 1998-1999 Kosovo war, “humanitarian” NGOs from the Middle East came to build mosques and provide aid, also importing Wahabi-style Islam, which is very different from Kosovo’s Hanafi Islamic tradition. Some Kosovo imams trained in Middle Eastern religious schools came back with a more radical Islam. ISIS recruiters proclaimed a religious duty for Kosovars to help Syrian Muslims threatened by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Radical imams operating outside the Kosovo Islamic community recruited young men, often offering computer or English classes as bait.
  • Topic: Terrorism, Counter-terrorism, Conflict, Rule of Law
  • Political Geography: Europe, Kosovo, Balkans
  • Author: Heni Nsaibia, Caleb Weiss, Seth Loertscher, Nick Kramer, Robin Simcox, Hannah Stuart, Amarnath Amarasingam, Marc-Andre Argentino
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point
  • Abstract: Earlier this month, the United Nations monitoring team that tracks the global jihadi threat warned the Security Council that “ISIL franchises in West Africa and the Sahel continued to enjoy operational success in early 2020, as have those of Al-Qaida, heightening international concern about stability in the region.” Concern over the threat has grown despite the fact that a year ago clashes erupted between the Islamic State and al-Qa`ida franchises in the region, turning what had been an often amicable and sometimes cooperative relationship into fighting between them in Mali and Burkina Faso. In our feature article, Héni Nsaibia and Caleb Weiss assess that a number of factors ended the “Sahelian anomaly” of amicable relations between the regional Islamic State and al-Qa`ida groupings, “including the hardening of ideological divisions, pressure from Islamic State Central for its regional satellite to take on a more confrontational approach toward its rival, and tensions created by the growing ambition of the Islamic State affiliate in the Sahel.” They note that “while some argue that fighting between jihadi groups is positive for the counterterrorism landscape, it is also possible that the two groups are in effect engaging in a process called ‘outbidding,’ wherein a group aims to show ‘greater resolve to fight the enemy than rival groups.’” Our interview is with Chris Costa, who during the first year of the Trump administration served as the Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Counterterrorism. Building on a study of terrorist recidivism in Belgium by Thomas Renard published in the April issue of CTC Sentinel, Robin Simcox and Hannah Stuart examine the problem set created by jihadi prisoners in Europe from two different angles. Firstly, they examine the nature of the threat by analyzing a dozen alleged jihadi terror plots and attacks that occurred inside and outside prisons in Western Europe since 2014 in which at least one of the attackers/plotters had been convicted in Europe of a previous terrorism offense. Secondly, they look at the scale of the threat by calculating the rates of various forms of recidivism from a comprehensive database relating to U.K. jihadi terror activity. Amarnath Amarasingam and Marc-André Argentino assess the emerging security threat posed by the QAnon conspiracy. They write: “A survey of cases of individuals who have allegedly or apparently been radicalized to criminal acts with a nexus to violence by QAnon, including one case that saw a guilty plea on a terrorism charge, makes clear that QAnon represents a public security threat with the potential in the future to become a more impactful domestic terror threat. This is true especially given that conspiracy theories have a track record of propelling terrorist violence elsewhere in the West as well as QAnon’s more recent influence on mainstream political discourse.”
  • Topic: Terrorism, Prisons/Penal Systems, Counter-terrorism, Al Qaeda, Islamic State, Conflict, QAnon
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, Sahel, United States of America
  • Author: J. Kenneth Wickiser, Kevin J. O'Donovan, Michael Washington, Stephen Hummel, F. John Burpo, Raffaello Pantucci, Nuno Tiago Pinto, Tomasz Rolbiecki, Pieter Van Ostaeyen, Charlie Winter
  • Publication Date: 08-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: CTC Sentinel
  • Institution: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point
  • Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has renewed concerns over bioterror threats, with Microsoft founder Bill Gates recently warning that a bioterror attack involving a pathogen with a high death rate “is kind of the nightmare scenario” facing the planet. In this month’s feature article, J. Kenneth Wickiser, Kevin J. O’Donovan, Lieutenant Colonel Michael Washington, Major Stephen Hummel, and Colonel F. John Burpo assess the potential future threat posed by the malevolent use of synthetic biology. They write that synthetic biology “is a rapidly developing and diffusing technology. The wide availability of the protocols, procedures, and techniques necessary to produce and modify living organisms combined with an exponential increase in the availability of genetic data is leading to a revolution in science affecting the threat landscape that can be rivaled only by the development of the atomic bomb.” The authors, who all serve at, or are affiliated with, the Department of Chemistry and Life Science at the United States Military Academy, note that synthetic biology has “placed the ability to recreate some of the deadliest infectious diseases known well within the grasp of the state-sponsored terrorist and the talented non-state actor” and that “the techniques used to propagate bacteria and viruses and to cut and paste genetic sequences from one organism to another are approaching the level of skill required to use a cookbook or a home computer.” They argue that “an effective response to the threats posed by those using synthetic biology for nefarious purpose will require vigilance on the part of military planners, the development of effective medical countermeasures by the research community, and the development of diagnostic and characterization technologies capable of discriminating between natural and engineered pathogens.” In our interview, Gilles de Kerchove, the European Union’s longtime Counter-Terrorism Coordinator, speaks to Raffaello Pantucci. Nuno Pinto presents a detailed case study of an alleged Portuguese Islamic State network with strong connections to the United Kingdom that sheds significant light on the foreign fighter recruitment pipeline between Europe and Syria in the last decade. Tomasz Rolbiecki, Pieter Van Ostaeyen, and Charlie Winter examine the threat posed by the Islamic State across Africa based on a study of its attack claims. They write: “As the second half of 2020 unfolds, it is critical that military and counterterrorism policymakers recognize what is at stake in Africa. The Islamic State is not just fighting a low-grade insurgency on the continent; in at least two countries, it has been able to seize and hold territory and subsequently engage in pseudo-state activities.”
  • Topic: Terrorism, European Union, Counter-terrorism, Weapons , Islamic State, Biological Weapons , Foreign Fighters
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, Middle East, Syria, Portugal
  • Author: O. Lebedeva
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: ThE DISINTEGRATION of the Soviet Union has led to a new geopolit- ical zone appearing on the world map – the so-called post-Soviet space where Russia plays a dominant role even though post-Soviet countries have different development paths, political regimes and economies. Amid the escalating relations between Russia and the West, the pressing prob- lem for Russia right now is to build relations with its immediate neigh- bors. Therefore, maintaining diplomatic relations with post-Soviet coun- tries is an important geopolitical goal for Russia, since this is a zone of strategic economic and political interests. however, not only Russia is interested in establishing strong diplomatic ties but also former Soviet countries. This is largely because Russia is at the center of the post-Soviet space, with many countries, including EaEU member states, pursuing trade and economic relations via Russia.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, Conflict, Economic Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, Post-Soviet Europe
  • Author: Ye. Zinkov
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: ThE PROBLEM of the acquisition and sale of Alaska, and to whom it belongs, excites the minds of researchers to this day. There are supposi- tions that once the first Russians had traversed Siberia, they settled in Alaska during the second half of the 16th century.1 The next period, in which Alaska gets mentioned by Russian people, dates to 1648, in connection with the names of the Cossack Semyon Dezhnev and his associate Fedot Popov, who circumvented the Asian continent, then passed from the Arctic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean basin.2 Later on, an official expedition was organized; its commander, Vitus Bering, announced in 1728 his discovery that Asia and America did not have a land bridge between them.3 The first legal documentation of Alaska’s coastline took place on August 21, 1732, when the crew of the St. Gabriel, under the leadership of surveyor Mikhail Gvozdev and navigator Ivan Fyodorov (or K. Moshkov, according to other sources), recorded its contours without going ashore. From this date began the jurisdictional affiliation of Alaska with the Russian Empire. however, the territory for a long time contin- ued to be developed on the basis of civil law. The bureaucrats of the Russian Empire did not duly administer the land in Alaska. This situation contributed to the consolidation of legal relations within civil society on the territory along the lines of the Novgorod Republic.
  • Topic: International Law, Law, Land, Jurisdiction
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, North America, Alaska, United States of America
  • Author: Sergey Ryabkov
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: Interview with Sergey Ryabkov, Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, World Health Organization, Public Health, Pandemic, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: D. Demurin
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs: A Russian Journal of World Politics, Diplomacy and International Relations
  • Institution: East View Information Services
  • Abstract: The Approaching 75th anniversary of the end of World War II gave a new lease of life to the so-called “memory wars.” On September 19, 2019, the European Parliament passed a resolution “On the importance of European remembrance for the future of Europe”1 that, among other things, shifted the burden of equal responsibility for World War II onto Germany and the USSR. The same document accuses Moscow of decades of occupation of Eastern Europe which slowed down their socio-economic and democratic development and suggests another Nuremberg tribunal to conduct legal inquiries into the crimes of “Stalinism,” etc. On the whole, this document is the fullest presentation of what the Western political elites think about the Soviet Union and its role in World War II. On December 20, 2019, speaking at an informal summit of the CIS countries, President of Russia Vladimir Putin presented convincing evi- dence of falsification by our Western colleagues of the facts related to the beginning of World War II including documents that unequivocally con- firmed the responsibility of West European countries that had encouraged Hitler to spread his expansion eastward and Poland’s unsavory role in the division of Czechoslovakia. This stirred up an extremely negative response by many European politicians and political scientists who raised their voices against what they called revisionist history. At the same time, it should be said that this resolution did not drop out of the sky – it was a result of many years of efforts of the European establishment to transform the European historical space.
  • Topic: History, Memory, World War II
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: F. Michael Wuthrich, David Ingleby
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Democracy
  • Institution: National Endowment for Democracy
  • Abstract: Drawing from the 2019 mayoral elections in Turkey, this paper highlights a path that opposition parties might take to defuse polarized environments and avoid playing into the political traps set by populists in power. The particular type of moral and amplified polarization that accompanies populism’s essential “thin” ideology builds a barrier between a populist’s supporters and the opposition. Yet the CHP opposition in Turkey has recently won notable victories with its new campaign approach of “radical love,” which counteracts populism’s polarizing logic and has exposed Erdoğan’s weakness.
  • Topic: Elections, Democracy, Populism, Authority
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Alberto Gasparetto
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: This paper focuses on Turkey’s foreign policymakers’ attitudes in the context of the 2003 US decision to wage war against Iraq. The main goal is to assess and downplay the impact of religion in relation to security-related concerns. Drawing on official speeches, interviews, declarations by key figures in the foreign policy process, the paper argues that religion is nothing more than an intervening factor in the case of Turkey’s approach to the 2003 war in Iraq. Therefore, notwithstanding the role of Islamist elites in the foreign policy decision-making of Turkey, Turkey’s foreign affairs were rather inspired by realist behaviour, driven by pragmatic considerations, aimed at pursuing rationalist goals.
  • Topic: Security, Religion, War, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Asia, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Israel Nyaburi Nyadera, Billy Agwanda
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: Turkey’s immigration policies have experienced several changes over the last century. The 2016 agreement between Turkey and the European Union has not only had a significant impact on how Turkey and the European Union deal with asylum seekers, but also revived the debate on the EU’s externalisation of immigration issues. This study aims to examine the impact of the agreement on Turkey’s immigration policymaking process. It identifies that while the European Union may seek to externalise immigration by entering into agreements with third-party states, Turkey’s immigration policies are largely influenced by a complex balance of domestic, regional, and political interest.
  • Topic: Migration, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Immigration, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Hakan Uslu
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Rest: Journal of Politics and Development
  • Institution: Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)
  • Abstract: The Islamic banking sector has experienced a rapid development both in Muslim and non-Muslim geographies. In this study, using a panel dataset spanning the time period 2005-2018 and several econometric estimations, how intellectual capital affects the financial performance of the participation banks, as Islamic banks are called in Turkey is analysed. The Value-Added Intellectual Coefficient model (VAIC), a well-known methodology, is utilised as a measure for intellectual capital performances and return on assets (ROA) and return on shareholders’ equity (ROE), in general, financial performances of the banks. The results of the analyses provide evidence for a positive and statistically significant impact of intellectual capital on financial performances of Islamic banks operating in Turkey. The results also suggest that employed capital efficiency and structural capital efficiency in the operations of Islamic banks are the two crucial factors for their profitability, while human capital efficiency has no statistical relationship with their financial performances. The current study contributes to the relevant literature since there is no study on Islamic banks of Turkey in the aspect of intellectual capital and helps Islamic bankers, such as executives, investors and shareholders, or policymakers in understanding and determining their positions regarding intellectual capital.
  • Topic: Banks, Financial Institutions , Capital, Banking
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: I. Aytac Kadioglu
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Sakarya University (SAU)
  • Abstract: The purpose of this article is to assess international negotiation efforts towards ending the civil war in Syria. Although many peace events have been organised since the beginning of the civil war, the existing literature has paid little attention to the impact of international peace efforts in ending the Syrian war. The article aims to close this gap by assessing major peace efforts between 2011 and 2019; The Arab League Peace Plan, the United Nations peace initiatives, and the Geneva, Vienna and Astana peace talks. It analyses these efforts through official reports and documents published by the UN, US, Republic of Turkey, UN Security Council, and members of peace initiatives. These documents are complemented by newspaper articles showing the official views of the regional and global actors as well as the key agents of the conflict. Therefore, the article reveals the reasons for the failure of these conflict resolution efforts. The Syrian government’s reluctance to end the conflict in a non-violent way, the armed groups’ dream of territorial gains and regional and global powers’ involvement in the conflict prevented the solution of the conflict. It utilises official negotiations and ripeness approaches to investigate the insights and contents of peace efforts. The article argues that the regional and global powers have acted as facilitators instead of mediators in the peace talks. It finds that even though these peace events are viewed as official negotiations, they are only pre-negotiation efforts.
  • Topic: Civil War, Diplomacy, International Cooperation, United Nations, Peace
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Asia, Syria
  • Author: Mustafa Onur Tetik
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Sakarya University (SAU)
  • Abstract: Following Turkey’s recent military operation in Syria (Operation Peace Spring), “Turks” and “Kurds” have widely been dichotomized by the Western media outlets and political circles. US President Donald Trump even claimed that “Turks” and “Kurds” have been fighting for hundreds of years, and that they are “natural enemies.” However, the complex historical relationship of “Turks” and “Kurds,” as a loosely connected social totality prior to the age of nationalism, refutes such sloppy and feeble contentions. This work presents an identity-driven historical survey of Turkish/Turkmen societies’ and polities’ interrelations with Kurdish collectivities until the emergence of modern nationhood and nationalism. In doing so, this article provides an ideational and narrational context feeding the Turkish government’s contemporary relationship with the Kurds of the Middle East. The major complication in journalistic and academic literature is rooted in the lack or omission of historical background informing current policy choices influenced by how relevant actors historically perceive each other. Today’s incidents and facts such as the “solution process,” “village guard system” or different Kurdish collectivities’ positions between Iran and Turkey are sometimes akin to precedent events in history. This work aims to make a holistic contribution to fill this gap and to provide a succinct historical overview of interrelations.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Nationalism, Regional Cooperation, Nation-State
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia, Kurdistan
  • Author: Can Eyup Cekic
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Sakarya University (SAU)
  • Abstract: This study aims to expose the ways in which leading officials of the Committee of Union and Progress (the CUP) interpreted, internalized, and questioned the conditions of their mission in Arab lands during World War I (WWI). It builds on the memoirs of Falih Rıfkı, aide-de-camp of Commander-in-Chief Cemal Pasha, and Halide Edip, an ardent supporter of the social and educational reforms of the CUP government. Both written after the war, these memoirs reflect not only nostalgia and regret but also the complicated relationship between Turkish officials and Arabs on the eve of their breakup from one another as citizens of the Ottoman State. The study also questions the orthodox argument that the Turkist and anti-Arabic ideology of the CUP government in general and Cemal Pasha’s wartime crusade against Arab nationalists in particular triggered the emergence of Arab nationalism. By contemplating the memoirs of CUP members in Arab lands, this study argues that Falih Rıfkı, Cemal Pasha, and Halide Edip tried to understand the region and its people in order to create a mutual future for Turks and Arabs within the Ottoman Empire.
  • Topic: Nationalism, War, Citizenship, World War I
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia, Ottoman Empire
  • Author: Ayfer Erdogan
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Sakarya University (SAU)
  • Abstract: In 2013, Egypt’s first democratically elected president Mohammed Morsi was overthrown by a military coup. Since then the country has undergone serious setbacks in terms of democracy, individual freedoms, and social justice. Egypt’s failed revolution and the military coup could not be thought independently from the role of external actors - either directly or indirectly involved in this process. Despite their political rhetoric emphasizing democracy promotion and political reforms, both the US and the EU failed to pursue consistent and contributory policies in promoting democratic transition in Egypt out of fear that the electoral victory of Islamist groups would harm their interests in the region. On the other hand, the Gulf Monarchies played a pivotal role in the entrenchment of the military rule by providing financial and political support to the military-backed government as a shield against the democratically elected government in Egypt. This article investigates how the policies adopted by Egypt’s key allies, the European Union, the US and the Gulf Monarchies, impacted the trajectory of Egypt’s political transition in the face of the January 25 revolution and 2013 military coup. The main thesis of the article is that the policies pursued by external actors created a political environment unfavorable for democratic change in Egypt.
  • Topic: Non State Actors, Military Affairs, Authoritarianism, European Union, Transition
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, Egypt
  • Author: Anurag Tripathi, Girisanker S.B.
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: AUSTRAL: Brazilian Journal of Strategy International Relations
  • Institution: Postgraduate Program in International Strategic Studies, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
  • Abstract: Venezuela continues to face rampant inflation, poverty and diseases pilling up in light of the US sanctions against PDVSA (Petroleos de Venezuela,S.A), the Venezuelan state-owned Oil Company. Despite the crisis, Russia continues to play a key role in supporting the regime of Nicolas Maduro and sustaining oil production in the country. The research focuses on the role played by Russia is helping the current regime to survive against the US sanctions and the vested interest it brings along with it. The outcome of the research is to find out the role played by Russian oil industries in shaping Russia’s Foreign Policy in Venezuela and to know whether Moscow has any leverage over the energy sector in Venezuela. The paper gives prime importance to the Venezuelan economy and the Geopolitics of oil. The research aims to give a whole new outlook in the field of International Relations by exploring the nuances of oil giants in shaping relations between countries.
  • Topic: International Trade and Finance, Oil, Natural Resources, Hegemony, Gas, Rivalry
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Lukasz Jurenczyk, Jildiz Nicharapova
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: AUSTRAL: Brazilian Journal of Strategy International Relations
  • Institution: Postgraduate Program in International Strategic Studies, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
  • Abstract: The main research question of the article is what attitude present the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the Collective Security Treaty Organization towards Afghanistan after 2014? A number of detailed questions were also put to help to answer the main question. The article consists of eight chapters. The first chapter discusses the methodological assumptions of the article. Chapter two covers literature review and theoretical framework of the article. The following chapters include an analysis of the approach to Afghanistan of the three indicated international organizations. The article ends with conclusion that contain the main theses.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, NATO, Diplomacy, International Cooperation, Military Strategy
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Europe, North Atlantic, Middle East, North America
  • Author: Charles Pennaforte, Ricardo Luigi
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: AUSTRAL: Brazilian Journal of Strategy International Relations
  • Institution: Postgraduate Program in International Strategic Studies, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
  • Abstract: The two first decades of the 21 st Century were marked by the recrudescence of two powerhouses, Russia and China. Given their important role on global geopolitics, these two countries took advantage of the gaps resulted from yet another crisis on the structure of global capitalism, which influenced the relative decline of the United States capacity to impose its will on the international system as they had been able to do so since the end of World War II. This article’s objective is to analyze the global geopolitical rearrangement due to a weakened United States which opened the possibility for the BRICS nations to emerge as possible sources of power. To reinforce this analysis, the world-systems perspective, (here on referred to as WSP) elaborated mainly by Immanuel Wallerstein and Giovanni Arrighi is used, as well as a geopolitical approach to provide a link to international relations theories. Therefore, this paper is divided on to four sections. The first one interrelates the geopolitical theories and those of the WSP. The second section is guided towards understanding the origins and fundamentals of the WSP. On the third section, an approach is made towards the motivations and the effects of the rearrangement of power on the world’s geopolitics. Finally, on the last section, the roles and opportunities that have arisen from the emergence of the BRICS nations on the international system are presented.
  • Topic: Development, International Trade and Finance, Geopolitics, Capitalism
  • Political Geography: Africa, Russia, China, Europe, India, Asia, South Africa, Brazil, South America
  • Author: Ameer Ayaz, Abdul Wadood
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Political Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: In 2015, millions of refugees, mostly Syrians, knocked the door of Europe for protection against war and violence in their home countries. The number of refugees that entered Europe in 2015 made only 0.2 percent of total Europe’s population, considerably low number than other refugee hosting countries. In fact, for a continent as wealthy as Europe, the influx of refugees could be easily managed but European Union was unable to bring a common policy to cope with it. European Union already divided by the Eurozone crisis experienced further divisions due to refugee influx. The polarization in European politics and society reached the highest point since the Second World War. The failure of Social Democracy and center politics in solving the crisis created space for either right-wing or left-wing populist parties that won many seats in both European and national parliaments, while in some countries even managed to make governments.
  • Topic: Multiculturalism, European Union, Refugee Crisis, Arab Spring, Syrian War
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Veronica Mihalache
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Warsaw East European Review (WEER)
  • Institution: Centre for East European Studies, University of Warsaw
  • Abstract: This paper brings into discussion a concept that has not yet been distinctively and uniquely defined but which, at the same time, can be considered a classical one, thanks to the establishment of the theoretical basis of the social frameworks of memory in 1925 by the sociologist Maurice Halbwachs. Basically, any past memory reaches the fields of human memory causing a process of perpetual transformation. The social frameworks of memory are pieces of collective memory, past memories that are dominant and persistent in time, which offer explicit historical and social coordinates that lead to the interpretation of the past and the orientation of present values. Both public and collective environments offer the individual social and historical coordinates as well as a certain orientation of these values, an implicit ideology, so that the individual is influenced, and in time, even shaped by these coordinates and values that are implicitly transmitted by the social fields of memory.
  • Topic: Sociology, Memory, Identities, Values
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Ieva Gajauskaite
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Warsaw East European Review (WEER)
  • Institution: Centre for East European Studies, University of Warsaw
  • Abstract: Lithuania is a small state by objective features (population, territory, GDP) and subjective ones (geopolitical position, resilience from external security threats, national identity). The goal of this research is to define the main roles of Lithuania, which are relevant to the Lithuanian foreign policy decision-making process nowadays. Those roles are the structure for Lithuania’s new President Gitanas Nausėda. While during his presidency he will have the possibility to modify them, for now for the roles formed and enacted over the last ten years serve as the limits of the change of the policy in the Euro-Atlantic area. The main assumption regarding the roles of Lithuania in the Euro-Atlantic area is that policymakers emphasize the smallness of the state. Accordingly, being a small state is translated to a set of expected and appropriate behavior. Therefore, the classical definition of smallness suggests that Lithuania’s roles should include the strategies of hiding and appeal to democratic values. In order to deny or confirm the assumptions, the research includes the definition of small states, an analysis of small state foreign policy strategies, the main thesis of the Role theory, the theoretical basis of subjective smallness concept, and discussion of Lithuania’s roles in the Euro-Atlantic area, using an interpretive methodology of Social constructivism.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Small states, Constructivism
  • Political Geography: Europe, Lithuania, Baltic States
  • Author: Adrian Popa, Cristian Barna
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Warsaw East European Review (WEER)
  • Institution: Centre for East European Studies, University of Warsaw
  • Abstract: Russia’s recent buildup of A2/AD (anti-access/area denial) forces in Crimea and Kaliningrad, coupled with its increasingly confronting rhetoric in the Black and Baltic Seas, pose a serious challenge for the NATO’s Eastern flank countries. While the mare sui generis status of the Black Sea might be altered under the expected inauguration of Canal Istanbul in 2023 as it would probably require the revision of the Montreux Convention, the mare liberum status of the Baltic Sea might also be questioned as Russia contests NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence in this region. Facing this challenging geostrategic context, Pilsudski’s ideas of Intermarium seem to have revived within the Central and Eastern European countries under modern interfaces such as the Bucharest Nine and the Three Seas Initiative. This paper proposes a comparative analysis between the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea in terms of their newly-emerged geostrategic context, discusses the feasibility of the recent endeavours to promote cooperation within the Central and Eastern European countries and not ultimately, highlights the utility of a regional military alliance in support of NATO.
  • Topic: NATO, Diplomacy, International Security, International Affairs, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, Crimea, Baltic Sea, Baltic States
  • Author: Weronika Michalak, Dr hab. Zbigniew Karaczun
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Warsaw East European Review (WEER)
  • Institution: Centre for East European Studies, University of Warsaw
  • Abstract: The phenomenon of climate change, observed for years and constantly intensifying, has had a negative impact on health, significantly deteriorating the quality of life of people in many regions of the world, including Poland. Already now we are dealing with increasingly frequent extreme weather phenomena; hurricanes, storms and increasingly longer heat waves no longer surprise us. Unfortunately, this is merely the beginning of the negative effects of climate change. Others will come before long. In the coming years, many other new threats will be observed, such as flooding of ocean islands, desertification of areas exposed to water scarcity or serious loss of biodiversity, which will translate into food security. Unfortunately, it does not end there.1 The greenhouse effect is a process by which radiation from the Earth’s atmosphere warms the planet’s surface to a temperature above what it would be without this atmosphere. We can differentiate short-term solar radiation (0.15-4.0 nm) and long-term radiation. Thermal radiation escapes into the cosmic sphere and heat radiation returns to the ground, being stopped by a layer of GHG – greenhouse gases (CO2, CH4, N2O, SF6, water vapor etc.), which warm up Earth’s athmosphere to a dangerous level – even a 1°C degree increase (in comparison to pre-industrial level, when emissions stared to rise) in the average world temperature can be detrimental to human health and change the conditions of life on this planet (Figure 1). However, we currently face a risk of global warming even up to 3°C degrees, unless GHG emissions are significantly reduced. Any further rise of the global temperature will have deteriorating impact on people and whole humanity, as well as staying at the current level of emissions.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Health, Food, Food Security
  • Political Geography: Europe, Poland, Global Focus
  • Author: Selin M. Bolme, Mevlut Cavusoglu
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: International Relations Council of Turkey (UİK-IRCT)
  • Abstract: This paper aims to analyze Britain’s relations with the former colonies in the Gulf after the termination of the British protectorate in the Persian Gulf and discuss how the British colonial ties influenced the post-colonial relations with the Arab Gulf States. Archive documents, official papers and secondary sources were used in order to determine and compare the relations in pre/post withdrawal periods and the results were analyzed in frame of the Post-colonial theory. The main argument of this study is that the British colonial relations and ties, which had been constructed in political, military, economic and institutional spheres in the colonial era, were significant determinants in reshaping the new British foreign policy towards the Arab Gulf States. Britain, who successfully adopted the colonial relations in the new term, managed to preserve its interests after the withdrawal and even extended some of them in certain fields such as the oil sector.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, History, Colonialism
  • Political Geography: Britain, Europe, Persian Gulf
  • Author: Michael Flynn, Andrew Rhodes, Michael F. Manning, Scott Erdelatz, Michael Kohler, John T. Kuehn, B. A. Friedman, Steven A. Yeadon, Matthew C. Ludlow, Terje Bruøygard, Jørn Qviller
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Advanced Military Studies
  • Institution: Marine Corps University Press, National Defense University
  • Abstract: In 2019, the 38th Commandant of the Marine Corps released his planning guidance that laid out the strategic focus and future direction of the Marine Corps. General David H. Berger’s intent for the following four years concurred with the analysis of the previous Commandant and the necessary alignment of the Corps with the National Defense Strategy for the future needs of the Fleet by focusing on five areas: force design, warfighting, education and training, core values, and command and leadership. General Berger cogently noted that the coming decade will be characterized by conflict, crisis, and rapid change—just as every decade preceding it. And despite our best efforts, history demonstrates that we will fail to accurately predict every conflict; will be surprised by an unforeseen crisis; and may be late to fully grasp the implications of rapid change around us. Berger’s primary concern is that the Marine Corps is not fully prepared— equipped, trained, or organized—to support the naval force. To that end, force design became the priority for Marine Corps efforts to fulfill its role for the Fleet as prescribed by the U.S. Congress. The level of change required to integrate the Corps of the future with the naval forces of today would not happen overnight and certainly not without a great deal of growing pains to ensure the Corps is equipped and prepared for the future security environment. When Force Design 2030 was released in March 2020, the Marine Corps was prepared to make the force-wide changes necessary to partner with the Navy and serve as the country’s naval expeditionary force. Our current force design, optimized for large-scale amphibious forcible entry and sustained operations ashore, has persisted unchanged in its essential inspiration since the 1950s. It has changed in details of equipment and doctrine as technology has advanced toward greater range and lethality of weapon systems. In light of unrelenting increases in the range, accuracy, and lethality of modern weapons; the rise of revisionist powers with the technical acumen and economic heft to integrate those weapons and other technologies for direct or indirect confrontation with the U.S.; and the persistence of rogue regimes possessing enough of those attributes to threaten United States interests, I am convinced that the defining attributes of our current force design are no longer what the nation requires of the Marine Corps. Berger’s plan pointed to specific areas of change required to make force design a reality: the size, capacity, and capability of the Corps. In an austere fiscal environment, the Marines must assess their current capabilities to achieve a smaller footprint with broader reach—do more with less. As the reality of COVID-19 and the 2020 U.S. presidential election have so poignantly reminded us all, these tasks cannot and should not rest on any single shoulder and any response should be well considered and intended to benefit the greater good. This issue of the Journal of Advanced Military Studies (JAMS) will address elements of the Commandant’s Planning Guidance, particularly the concept of naval integration and what it means for the Services, especially the Marine Corps. Our authors look to the past for relevant examples of military successes and failures of integration, but they also discuss how future warfare will play out based on these concepts. The authors explore the topic from a variety of perspectives, including those for and against, and they offer analyses of past and current attempts and what naval integration may mean for the future of the Corps. The following articles present the capabilities that will be required to shift from a traditional power projection model to a persistent forward presence and how the Marine Corps can exploit its positional advantage while defending critical regions. Our first author, Dr. Matthew J. Flynn, presents a historical approach to the topic in his article “The Unity of the Operational Art: Napoleon and Naval Integration.” Flynn’s research calls for greater coordination between the sea and land domains to improve U.S. national security. His article draws parallels between Napoleon Bonaparte’s defeat and the importance of naval integration for military success: “Napoleon’s fate reveals a great deal about naval integration and how it explains France’s defeat and, most importantly, that there is but one operational art—not one for land and one for sea.” Our second author, Andrew Rhodes, also relies on a historical example with his discussion of the salient lessons that can be learned from the Sino-Japanese War. Rhodes encourages professional military educators and planners who are developing future operational concepts to look beyond simply retelling history and consider how the legacy of this conflict might shape Chinese operational choices. He reinforces From the Editors 9 Vol. 11, No. 2 the concept that military history is not simply a resource for answering concerns about future conflict, but it encourages us to ask better questions about the role of the sea Services and how they can handle uncertainty when preparing for the future. Lieutenant Colonel Michael F. Manning’s “Sea Control: Feasible, Acceptable, Suitable, or Simply Imperative” offers a historical review of early twentieth century Japanese naval battles as a framework to model possible future contests for control of the maritime domain. Manning believes that control of the maritime domain is a prerequisite for assured access and sets the condition for successful Joint operations. Manning believes that “nations not only have to compete with their enemy’s major air and naval capabilities but must also defend against land-based airpower; missiles; torpedoes; short-range, antisurface warfare assets; and coastal mines.” Colonel Scott Erdelatz (Ret) and his team of coauthors focused on an old approach for a new era of naval integration that acknowledges the long-term threat posed by China but also considers how much of what we know as the Marine Corps should be retained to fulfill other missions. Erdelatz et al. also analyze how radical integration might incur significant risk for the Marine Corps if long-term force structure decisions are based on still-evolving concepts and unproven technologies. Major Michael Kohler’s article, “The Joint Force Maritime Component Command and the Marine Corps: Integrate to Win the Black Sea Fight,” discusses how most current Marine and Navy integration takes place at the Service-chief level and primarily focuses on the Pacific. Kohler, however, believes that naval integration is also an important component of a successful defense against Russian expansion in the Black Sea region. Dr. John T. Kuehn shifts the focus to carriers and amphibious operations with his article “Carriers and Amphibs: Shibboleths of Sea Power.” Dr. Kuehn argues that aircraft carriers and Amphibious Ready Groups (ARGs) with an embarked Marine Expeditionary Unit represent shibboleths of seapower that conflate a deeper understanding of where the U.S. Fleet belongs now and where it needs to go in the future to face the challenges of the twenty-first century. Major B. A. Friedman’s article, “First to Fight: Advanced Force Operations and the Future of the Marine Corps,” then circles back to the traditional Marine Corps stance as always first to fight and the need for advanced force operations in the Corps of the future. Steven A. Yeadon’s article, “The Problems Facing United States Marine Corps Amphibious Assault,” rounds out the current perspective with a review of issues the Marine Corps has faced with amphibious assaults. Yeadon offers actionable information on current limitations and vulnerabilities of U.S. amphibious forces to chart a way forward for a robust forcible entry capability from the sea. The discussion closes with two articles looking to the future of naval in- 10 From the Editors Journal of Advanced Military Studies tegration and the Marine Corps. Major Matthew C. Ludlow’s article, “Losing the Initiative in the First Island Chain: How Organizational Inefficiencies Can Yield Mismatched Arsenals,” presents what may be considered a losing proposition of initiatives in China’s First Island Chain; however, strategic gaps in capabilities have emerged that could dramatically impact the ability to execute an island-defense strategy. The final article by Lieutenant Colonels Terje Bruøygard and Jørn Qviller, “Marine Corps Force Design 2030 and Implications for Allies and Partners: Case Norway,” offers a larger discussion of Force Design 2030 and its future implications for American allies with a case study on Norway. The authors encourage the Department of Defense to consider greater interoperability between and among Services and allies, including increased communication with allies on changes happening at the Service and national level of the U.S. armed forces. The remainder of the journal rounds out with a review essay and a selection of book reviews that continues our focus on naval integration, but it also highlights continuing challenges in national security and international relations. The coming year will be busy for the JAMS editors as we work to provide journal issues on a diverse range of topics relevant to the study of militaries and defense.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, War, History, Military Strategy, Power Politics, Armed Forces, Military Affairs, Geopolitics, Navy, Oceans and Seas, Seapower
  • Political Geography: Russia, Japan, China, Europe, Norway, Asia, North America, United States of America, Black Sea
  • Author: Lucia Husenicova
  • Publication Date: 10-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Revista UNISCI/UNISCI Journal
  • Institution: Unidad de investigación sobre seguridad y cooperación (UNISCI)
  • Abstract: The disillusionment with Europe and integration process is spreading through the continent. However, it appears to be stronger in countries of the Central Europe, specifically V4. Countries that have joined the democratic club at the end of 20th century show today higher potential to be governed by populistic and nationalistic parties. The article addresses the issue of perception of democracy in V4 countries through the scope of analysis of scientific publications as well as opinion polls conducted by national or international agencies. It works with several definitions of democracy and liberal democracy as a theoretical background and confronts them with how these are perceived by the people in the selected V4 countries. The opinion polls show, that people in these countries value democracy as a concept, and value the freedom that it brings, however, their everyday life and political decision are often impacted by the social and economic conditions they are living in.
  • Topic: Nationalism, Democracy, Populism
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Europe
  • Author: Jaroslav Ušiak
  • Publication Date: 10-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Revista UNISCI/UNISCI Journal
  • Institution: Unidad de investigación sobre seguridad y cooperación (UNISCI)
  • Abstract: Central Europe has always been an integral part of all processes on the European continent. Nowadays, more than 30 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Central Europe has broad opportunities for cooperation in all areas and is fully integrated into various regional and international organisations. Using qualitative methods—analysis and comparison with combination with the theory of social constructivism—help us understand the social phenomena of cooperation among states. Based on social constructivism theory, our article elaborates on the factors of cooperation between individual states, focusing on the cooperation of the Visegrad Four (V4) countries in Central Europe. We examine the factors leading to the establishment of V4 cooperation, its form, and specific features related to the European Regional Security Complex, as well as future challenges.
  • Topic: Security, Regional Cooperation, Visegrad Group
  • Political Geography: Europe, Central Europe
  • Author: Alan McPherson
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Strategic Visions
  • Institution: Center for the Study of Force and Diplomacy, Temple University
  • Abstract: Contents News from the Director Spring 2020 Colloquium …………………2 Spring 2020 Prizes……………………......3 Diplomatic History ……………………….3 Non-Resident Fellow, 2020-2021………...4 Funding the Immerman Fund……………..4 Thanks to the Davis Fellow ………………4 News from the Community …………………... 5 Note from the Davis Fellow ………………….. 9 Spring 2020 Interviews Timothy Sayle ……………………….…..10 Sarah Snyder ………………………….…13 Book Reviews Lincoln, Seward, and US Foreign Relations in the Civil War Review by Alexandre F. Caillot …15 How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States Review by Graydon Dennison …..17 Enduring Alliance: A History of NATO and the Postwar Global Order Review by Stanley Schwartz ……19
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, NATO, Empire, Diplomatic History
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Global Focus
  • Author: Daniel Campos de Carvalho
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: In this article, we use the notion of legitimacy to analyse shifts in global humanitarian interventions since the 1990s, culminating in the contested adoption of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) framework under the United Nations umbrella in 2005. We assess how this important shift was disputed with narratives of protection and interference, and argue that the engagement of non- hegemonic actors (specifically Brazil and Russia) with the scope of humanitarian protection has influenced the substantive legitimacy of this global governance issue over the past three decades by creating a norm-making proce
  • Topic: Human Rights, Governance, Humanitarian Intervention, Legitimacy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Brazil, South America
  • Author: Liliana Ramalho Froio, Marcelo de Almeida Medeiros
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: The article analyses the decentralised international co-operation between Brazil and Europe, focusing on two specific issues that are not the main objectives of the literature specialised in paradiplomacy studies: first, how international co-operation can be used as a tool for power pro- jection and second, the effects that the economic, political and institutional asymmetry among the actors involved in co-operation arrangements produces on the co-operation outcomes. For that, a wide range of documents and data was used (interviews, official documents, minutes of meetings and data collected with a survey applied to public managers) related to the international co-oper- ation developed between Brazil and European countries. The conclusions are that even in decen- tralised co-operation arrangements, power relations matter to the results of co-operation.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Cooperation, Decentralization , Subnationalism
  • Political Geography: Europe, Brazil, South America
  • Author: Angelica Szucko
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Contexto Internacional
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • Abstract: On 25 March 2017, the European Union celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome, which established ‘an ever-closer union’ as a fundamental principle for European region- al integration. Only four days later, the United Kingdom delivered an official letter triggering its withdrawal process from the Community. How could we comprehend Brexit integrative and dis- integrative dynamics to the EU? The UK’s decision to leave the EU alongside recent crises in the Community and the spread of Eurosceptic movements fostered studies about disintegration dynam- ics. This article presents the current debate about differentiated (dis)integration based on up-to-date related literature. Next, it proposes a framework to assess the recent shifts in the UK-EU relationship and its contradictory effects on the EU project. The main argument of the paper is that the UK’s relationship with the European Union moved from an internal differentiated integration to a pro- posal of internal differentiated disintegration and, thereafter, to a process of external differentiated disintegration. Moreover, although Brexit means disintegration by one Member State, its effects on the EU project are mixed, initially promoting an integrative boom among the EU27 members, while at the same time neglecting disintegrating forces that could undermine the traditional European integration model.
  • Topic: Regional Cooperation, European Union, Brexit, Integration
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe
  • Author: Ayanda Ntsaluba
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Conflict Trends
  • Institution: The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD)
  • Abstract: Recognition of the nexus between foreign policy and public health is not new; it has found episodic expression that tended to dissipate, only to re-emerge with time. This has been the case because traditional notions of advancing national interests through foreign policy have tended to be anchored around the fields of trade and defence, with health seen as part of so-called “low politics”. This has tended to underplay the foreign policy dimensions of health.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Civil Society, International Cooperation, Ebola, Public Health
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe
  • Author: Carlos Espaliú Berdud
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: In view of the magnitude of the migration crisis, the SEGERICO research group at the Nebrija University in Madrid organised a call for papers, inviting all interested researchers to join us in the reflection on these relevant events, which we wanted to describe metaphorically in the image of the migration crisis knocking on the door of Fortress ‘Europe’. As a result of this reflection, we present to the general public, and to the scientific community in particular, a selection of six articles that address specific aspects of this crisis of human dignity and security, but that together provide a global and multi-faceted image of it, in accordance with the composition of our research group.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Migration, Governance, European Union, Refugees
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Sonia Boulos
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: The perception of Islam as antithetical to European human rights values is widespread in Europe. Such perceptions complicate the task of integrating Muslim minorities across Europe. While incrementing respect to human rights norms among migrant communities is an important element of any integration policy, this goal should not be perused by forcing migrant communities to adhere to human rights norms based on purely secular grounds. The drafting history of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is the ultimate proof that human rights can be justified from different political, philosophical and religious perspectives. While European States cannot compromise their commitment to human rights, even in relation to migrant communities, still, they must allow other narratives on the importance and the meaning of human rights to emerge. Muslim migrant communities must be allowed to engage in intra-group religion-based dialogues to reevaluate their stance on human rights and to debate their meaning. After being given the opportunity to engage in internal debates on the significance of human rights, Muslim migrant communities should also be engaged in cross-cultural dialogues with the rest of community to generate a wider agreement on the meaning and the application of human rights. This two-fold strategy is consistent with the principle of subsidiarity, which suggests that for human rights be effective they must be seen as legitimate by all those small groups that are close to the individual. Such legitimacy cannot be imposed from the outside, it must emerge from within these small groups. However, for these intra-group and cross-cultural dialogues to succeed, the separation of religion and State cannot be understood as the complete exclusion of religion from the public sphere. Individuals of different philosophical or religious convictions must have an equal access to public debates on the centrality of human rights in the European legal order.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Islam, Religion, Culture, Integration
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Juan Carlos Fernández-Rodríguez, Neidy Zenaida Domínguez Pineda, Fernando Miralles Muñoz
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: In the development of this work, a presentation has been made of the current conditions that can be found in the migratory process and that have the possibility of giving rise to the appearance of the so-called Ulysses Syndrome or Limit Stress Syndrome, in the immigrant population. In this article, special reference is made to the conditions that can be found today in our country, quantitative data are offered that can form a very approximate idea of ​​the enormous magnitude and importance of this migratory phenomenon. Next, a description of the characteristics of the so-called Ulysses Syndrome or Immigrant Syndrome with Chronic and Multiple Stress has been made. In the development of this work, these main characteristics have been shown, with special emphasis on the appearance of a mourning process and on the stress that Ulysses Syndrome can entail. Likewise, the different areas of personal functioning that may be impaired in immigrants and their similarity to a process of mourning (with the possibility of up to seven different types of mourning) have been commented, mainly due to the different personal issues and the different social factors that immigrants leave in their various countries of origin. Next, the symptoms of Ulysses Syndrome are described and the different areas of involvement of people suffering from this disorder are also described. Lastly, a brief reference is made to the possible therapeutic intervention in people affected by the problems described, both if they are in an adult age or if they are in a young infantile age. As it cannot be otherwise, the Syndrome requires preventive intervention, both at the individual and community level.
  • Topic: Migration, Immigrants, Stress
  • Political Geography: Europe, Global Focus
  • Author: Jordi Regi
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: The problem caused by the growing migratory pressure has caused the European Union (EU) one of its most significant crisis of late. A crisis without precedent. Existing asylum and migration policies have not been able to give the necessary and adequate response due to the serious pre-existing migratory problem. A large number of infringement procedures have also been opened against European Union Member States due to this situation, some of them still are still unresolved and submitted to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). This article analyzes EU's active policies on migration and asylum from a descriptive point of view as a starting point for the study of the implementation problems of these regulations in the wake of the governance crisis caused by the massive entry of immigrants in 2015 as a consequence of the war in Syria and the massive exodus of its refugees. In addition, the crucial role of the EU Council in this matter is studied through the analysis of its growing role and its active intervention policies against migration problems. The EU legislation is also analyzed as well as the United Nations rules on the matter through the study of the conventions on transnational organized crime and human trafficking. The article finally reviews the infringement procedures on the matter, taking as a comparative basis the reports on compliance with EU law from the last two years, concluding with the need to reformulate the aforementioned policies and the degree of member states' involvement, so as to create a common front against the problem analyzed in this article and its future development.
  • Topic: Security, Migration, European Union, Refugees, Asylum
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Gracia Abad Quintanal
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal on International Security Studies (RESI)
  • Institution: International Security Studies Group (GESI) at the University of Granada
  • Abstract: The end of the Cold War has given way to an impressive tranformation of the security concept, which has experienced an incredible expansion over the last few decades. This expansion has also gone hand by hand with the emergence of new concepts which might allow better analysis in this realm. The human security concept stands out among such new concepts as a result of its analytical value, in spite of all the criticism it has received. One of the questions which has become securitized in the context of the mentioned expansion of the security concept is migration. However, even if migrations have been approached too frequently from a traditional security concept based on the state and its sovereignty, the human seecurity concepts seems a much better tool for the analysis of this reality and its causes. In this sense, we cannot forget that people become migrants or refugees because they see questioned their personal security. Likewise, we have to pay attention to the extent to which, the host states and, particularly, their societies, may see their political, economic and societal security in danger. Therefore, the analysis should pay attention to the security challenges of both, host societies and migrants and refugees. Besides, only an analysis on the basis of the human security concept will allow us to come up with an accurate response to the question of migratory and refugee flows, this is a response which pays attention to some key aspects such as conflict prevention and management an growth and development promotion in the countries of origin of migrants and refugees, always in cooperation with those countries themselves. Such un analysis will show the indivisible nature of security and the fact that the security of host societies and that of migrants and refugees, far from being incompatible, go hand by hand.
  • Topic: Development, Migration, Refugees, Conflict, Human Security
  • Political Geography: Europe, Global Focus
  • Author: Fevzi Kırbaşoğlu, Özgür Tüfekçi
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Novus Orbis: Journal of Politics & International Relations
  • Institution: Department of International Relations, Karadeniz Technical University
  • Abstract: The European Union was established after the Second World War by countries that wanted to maintain their presence in the global arena as a whole and reorganise economic structures. The rising powers challenged the European Union with the start of the millennium. In order to counter challenges, the European Union has developed a number of mechanisms for its institutional structure and its relations with other actors. These mechanisms included the concept of strategic partnership and summit diplomacy. The mechanisms started with cooperation frameworks such as trade. The mechanisms were thought to reduce the intensity of the challenges and further the relations between the states. For this reason, in this study, it will be discussed which challenges the rising powers have made against the EU and to what extent the foreign policy tools used by the EU against these challenges have effects will be discussed. | İkinci Dünya Savaşı sonrasında küresel arenadaki varlığını bir bütün halinde sürdürmek isteyen Avrupa devletlerinin iktisadi yapılanmalarını yeniden tanzim etmek için meydana getirdiği Avrupa Birliği, yükselen güçler tarafından kaynaklanan çağdaş meydan okumalara karşı durabilmek için kurumsal yapısına ve diğer aktörlerle yürütmekte olduğu ilişkilerine birtakım yenilikler getirmektedir. Stratejik ortaklık konseptinin ve zirve diplomasilerinin bu (yeni) mekanizmalar arasında yer aldığı düşünülmektedir. Avrupa Birliği özellikle ticaret gibi işbirliği çerçevelerinden başlayan bu mekanizmalar sayesinde meydan okumaların şiddetini azaltacağını ve taraflar arasındaki münasebetleri çok daha ileriye taşıyacağını ümit etmektedir. Bu mucip üzere çalışmada yükselen güçlerin AB’ye yönelik ne tür meydan okumalar gerçekleştirdiği, AB’nin bunlara karşı kullandığı dış politika araçlarının neler olduğu ve bu araçların nasıl optimize edildiği tartışılacaktır.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, History, Power Politics, European Union, BRICS, MIKTA
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Amanda Paul
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: The European Union has been active in the South Caucasus since Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia regained independence in 1991. While the EU has established itself as an important partner for all three states over the past three decades, the South Caucasus is certainly not a top foreign policy priority for Brussels. Despite hopes that EU policies could act as transformative tools to help strengthen stability, security, and democracy as well as bring about a more cohesive and resilient region, the results have been rather patchy from the EU’s perspective. Likewise, expectations that the EU would develop a more geostrategic and security orientated policy in order to balance Russia have been dashed.
  • Topic: European Union, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Europe, South Caucasus
  • Author: Taleh Ziyadov
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: One thousand years ago two fundamental human concepts, namely history and time, were united for the first time by a great figure of the Silk Road region. Serving at the court of Qabus ibn Wushmagir (a great scion of the Ziyarid dynasty that ruled over the Southern Caspian basin in present-day Iran), a young man of around thirty by the name of Abu Rayhan Muhammad al-Biruni was provided with the wherewithal to engage in a lifelong, systematic quest to try to understand nations and societies— irrespective of geographic or cultural provenance—as they understood themselves. Surpassing even Herodotus and Thucydides in investigative open-mindedness, Biruni also went on to become the first to standardize a single, objective timescale measuring system or matrix within which all of the particulars of human history could be compared chronologically side by side.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Innovation, Economic Development , Silk Road
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eurasia, Global Focus
  • Author: Yu Hongjun
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: Since the outbreak of 2008 world financial crisis, issues such as lackluster economic growth around the world and lack of progress in regional cooperation have not been resolved. Conservatism, isolationism, racism, populism, and unilateralism are on the march; political and social movements based on opposition to economic globalization are in vogue; and policymakers as much as ordinary people are expressing concern about the future of the world. Based on his observations and thoughts with regards to modern international relations, as well as his commitment towards a common destiny for mankind, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the launch of the Silk Road Economic Belt and Twenty-first Century Maritime Silk Road, which together form the globally influential Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
  • Topic: International Political Economy, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Asia, Global Focus
  • Author: Akhmed Gumbatov
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: The global spread of the latest zoonotic virus, commonly known as COVID19, has become an unprecedented calamity for all humankind. By the time this publication goes to press, it is likely that worldwide around 25 million people will have been infected and the number of lives lost will approach the one million mark.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, International Political Economy, Natural Resources, Gas, Pandemic
  • Political Geography: Europe, Caucasus, Asia, Global Focus
  • Author: Lamberto Zannier, Eleonora Lotti
  • Publication Date: 09-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: At the beginning of the 1990s new conflicts erupted in Europe as new borders appeared on the map following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia, and Czechoslovakia. As emerging states were striving to assert new identities (or revive old ones), various minorities found themselves living within new national borders, which in a number of cases provoked instability and conflict, with geopolitics complicating these dynamics even further. As quickly became apparent, some of these divisions were so deep that a number of those conflicts remain unresolved.
  • Topic: Regional Cooperation, Minorities, Geopolitics, Silk Road, OSCE
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eurasia, Asia
  • Author: Metthew Bryza
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Baku Dialogues
  • Institution: ADA University
  • Abstract: The November 10th, 2020, trilateral agreement signed by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, and Russian President Vladimir Putin could become the most significant geopolitical development in the South Caucasus since the collapse of the Soviet Union—perhaps even more than the establishment of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil and Baku-TbilisiErzurum natural gas pipelines. But it is not yet clear that key actors in the Transatlantic community appreciate this opportunity, especially Washington and Paris, who along with Moscow, comprise the Co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, the supposedly impartial mediating body of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The trilateral agreement defines a peace settlement in line with the framework unofficially agreed by the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan over a decade ago, and thus stands a good chance to hold. The so-called “Basic Principles” or “Madrid Principles” were originally tabled by the American Russian, and French Co-chairs of the Minsk Group in November 2007 at a meeting of OSCE foreign ministers in Madrid.
  • Topic: Development, Diplomacy, Military Strategy, Geopolitics, OSCE
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eurasia, Asia, South Caucasus, Nagorno-Karabakh
  • Author: Bi Wei
  • Publication Date: 12-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Nowa Polityka Wschodnia
  • Institution: Faculty of Political Science and International Studies, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
  • Abstract: Poland is one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with People’s Republic of China. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties 70 years ago, both countries have conducted close cooperation in all areas and the bilateral relations have witnessed steady development. In particular, the “One Belt, One Road” initiative, launched in 2013, got the positive responses and support from many countries, including Poland, which became an important partner for China to promote the construction of the initiative. This paper, from a historical perspective, reviews the first interaction between China and Poland in the period of Yuan Dynasty which is arranged in chronological order. The narrations mainly concentrate on accounts of the western expeditions by Genghis Khan and his descendants as well as the Battle of Legnica, during the period of which the Mongolia Empire was successively set up. Each entry will include a concrete description, highlighting where possible issues such as where the Mongolia went, why the expedition and its record are important. The paper also expounds the first record about Poland and the change of the name of Poland in Chinese literature so as to deepen the mutual understanding between two countries.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, History, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia, Poland
  • Author: Agnieszka Nitza-Makowska
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Nowa Polityka Wschodnia
  • Institution: Faculty of Political Science and International Studies, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
  • Abstract: The China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) holds the potential to transform Pakistan along with its turbulent regional environment. In the short run, the multiple networks of infrastructure that the project provides will eventually improve Pakistan–European Union (EU) trade. Moreover, while the CPEC is unlikely to bring an immediate strategic shift in the bilateral dialogue, which is particularly lacking in political dynamics, its long-run promises can help to foster such dynamics. The project, if successful, can help Pakistan to establish a peaceful domestic environment and subsequently promote the country’s fresh image to reverse its soft power losses in Europe and beyond. This paper investigates contemporary Pakistan–EU relations, which have so far attracted little attention from international relations scholars. It presents the bilateral dynamics in the context of the CPEC, which is an unprecedented investment by China in Pakistan. The paper concludes by shedding light on the differences between China’s and the EU’s strategies vis-à-vis Pakistan. Despite the fact that the study focuses on one particular South Asian state, it can serve as a case study for the comparative analysis of China’s and the EU’s presence in third countries, especially those that, like Pakistan, have joined the Belt and Road Initiative.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, European Union, Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, China, Europe, South Asia, Asia
  • Author: Sevket Ovali, Ali Murat Özdemir
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Growing anti-Western sentiments around the world are currently manifesting themselves through divergent ways ranging from peaceful resistance movements to various forms of political violence. In the Middle East, unlike the earlier partially secular and nationalist Cold War anti-Americanism, the current popular anti-Western political movements are heavily equipped with Islamism, which appears to be an all-inclusive ideology and political movement for almost all dissidents. This applies to Turkey as well, despite its relatively long history of secularisation. This research particularly aims therefore to discuss the role of nationalism and Islamism on anti-Western sentiments in Turkish foreign policy through the lens of neo-classical realism and a new, broader conceptual framework: The Western Question. The research examines the contours, contents, and consequences of the problem through comparing two cases, namely the Cyprus problem of the 1970s and the crisis with the West that has surfaced after Turkey’s involvement in the Syrian Civil War.
  • Topic: Political Violence, European Union, Conflict, Islamism
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Syria, North America, Cyprus, United States of America
  • Author: James M. Scott
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: All Azimuth: A Journal of Foreign Policy and Peace
  • Institution: Center for Foreign Policy and Peace Research
  • Abstract: Since the end of the Cold War, advanced democracies have enacted explicit strategies of democracy promotion by providing assistance to governments, political parties, and other non-governmental groups and organizations all over the world. This paper examines the factors shaping European Union democracy aid allocation decisions from 1990-2010, weighing the relative impact of ideational concerns (regime type, human rights) and self-interests (political, security, economic). We argue that EU democracy aid reflects a “democracy-security dilemma” as the EU balances ideational reasons for promoting democracy with concerns over political and economic relationships, regional stability, and security. We test our hypotheses with a series of random effects, generalized least squares and Heckman selection models, which provide support for our argument. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of these findings for the impact and explanation of EU democracy promotion policies.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, European Union, Democracy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Gunther Schnabl
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Twenty years after the introduction of the euro, the European Monetary Union (EMU) is at its crossroads. Following the outbreak of the European financial and debt crisis in 2008, the European Central Bank (ECB) took comprehensive measures to stabilize the common currency. Interest rates were cut to and below zero and several asset purchase programs have inflated the ECB balance sheet (Riet 2018). Within the European System of Central Banks, large imbalances have emerged via the TARGET2 payments system, which can be seen as quasi-unconditional credit in favor of the southern euro area countries (Sinn 2018). While the ECB terminated its asset purchase program at the end of 2018 and is expected to increase interest rates in late 2019, financial instability is reemerging. Growing uncertainty about the fiscal discipline of the Italian government has triggered a significant increase in risk premiums on Italian government bonds. In particular, in Italy and Greece, but also in Germany, bad loans and assets remain stuck in the banking systems. In the face of the upcoming downswing, European banks do not seem ready for new financial turmoil. In this fragile environment, the future path of the EMU is uncertain. To enhance the stability of the EMU, a group of German and French economists has called for a common euro area budget, for a strengthening of the European Stability Mechanism as lender of last resort for euro area countries and banks, as well as for a common European deposit insurance scheme (Bénassy-Quéré et al. 2018). In response, 154 German economists have warned against transforming the EMU into what they call a “liablity union,” which systematically undermines market principles and wealth (Mayer et al. 2018). In 2018, a French-German initative to introduce a common euro area budget faced strong opposition from a group of northern European countries as well as from Italy, symbolizing the political deadlock concerning reforms of the EMU. This article explains the different views on the institutional setting of monetary policymaking in Europe from a historical perspective. It begins with a description of the economic and monetary order in postwar Germany. It then discusses the positive implications for the European integration process and the economic consequences of the transformation of postwar German monetary order. The final section offers some economic policy recommendations.
  • Topic: Economics, History, Monetary Policy, Reform, European Union, Banks, Currency
  • Political Geography: Europe, Germany
  • Author: George Vasilev
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: Carnegie Council
  • Abstract: A notable feature of nationalism’s contemporary resurgence is the increasing eagerness that governments have shown to support and shape the political causes of populations living abroad whom they conceive of as ethnic kindred. Governments engaged in such “kin state activism” assume a natural entitlement to speak for and assert authority over minorities and diasporas in other states, invoking a belief in common territorial, cultural, and even biological origins as a moral basis for that entitlement. A striking example of the trend is the Russian government’s declaration that it will defend the interests of ethnic Russians wherever they may be and regardless of their citizenship.1 The government has made good on this intention since 2014 through the invasion of Crimea and through support for pro-Russia secessionist fighters in eastern Ukraine. Russian officials have also made thinly veiled threats to apply the doctrine in Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia, where large Russian-speaking minorities reside and maintain strained relations with authorities.2 Kin state activism has also become increasingly apparent in other contexts, even though it has not involved the military coercion and flagrant disregard for international law characterizing Russia’s interventions. Examples that have made headlines recently include Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and his Fidesz (Federation of Young Democrats) party’s cross-border political collaborations with Romania’s Hungarians,3 Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s appeal to Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to take action against the discrimination of Greece’s predominantly ethnic Turkish Muslims,4 and Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović’s lobbying for electoral reform in Bosnia so that ethnic Croats there can gain increased representation.5 These and other examples typify a trend in which governments are more stridently assuming a right to protect, counsel, represent, politically organize, indoctrinate, naturalize, financially support, advocate for, and even govern populations beyond state jurisdictions on the basis of an ethnic conception of shared identity.
  • Topic: Nationalism, Minorities, Citizenship, Ethnicity
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Turkey, Greece, Hungary, Croatia
  • Author: Laila Parsons
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Palestine Studies
  • Institution: Institute for Palestine Studies
  • Abstract: The Peel Commission (1936–37) was the first British commission of inquiry to recommend the partition of Palestine into two states. The commissioners made their recommendation after listening to several weeks of testimony, delivered in both public and secret sessions. The transcripts of the public testimony were published soon afterward, but the secret testimony transcripts were only released by the United Kingdom’s National Archives in March 2017. Divided into two parts, this article closely examines the secret testimony. Part I discusses how the secret testimony deepens our understanding of key themes in Mandate history, including: the structural exclusion of the Palestinians from the Mandate state, the place of development projects in that structural exclusion, the different roles played by British anti-Semitism and anti-Arab racism, and the importance of the procedural aspects of committee work for understanding the mechanics of British governance. Part II extends this analysis by focusing on what the secret testimony reveals about how the Peel Commission came to recommend partition.
  • Topic: Nationalism, Developments, Zionism, Colonialism, Empire, Anti-Semitism
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Palestine
  • Author: John J. Mearsheimer
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Security
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: The liberal international order, erected after the Cold War, was crumbling by 2019. It was flawed from the start and thus destined to fail. The spread of liberal democracy around the globe—essential for building that order—faced strong resistance because of nationalism, which emphasizes self-determination. Some targeted states also resisted U.S. efforts to promote liberal democracy for security-related reasons. Additionally, problems arose because a liberal order calls for states to delegate substantial decisionmaking authority to international institutions and to allow refugees and immigrants to move easily across borders. Modern nation-states privilege sovereignty and national identity, however, which guarantees trouble when institutions become powerful and borders porous. Furthermore, the hyperglobalization that is integral to the liberal order creates economic problems among the lower and middle classes within the liberal democracies, fueling a backlash against that order. Finally, the liberal order accelerated China's rise, which helped transform the system from unipolar to multipolar. A liberal international order is possible only in unipolarity. The new multipolar world will feature three realist orders: a thin international order that facilitates cooperation, and two bounded orders—one dominated by China, the other by the United States—poised for waging security competition between them.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Relations Theory, Liberal Order
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Europe
  • Author: J.C. Sharman
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Security
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: The making of the international system from c. 1500 reflected distinctively maritime dynamics, especially “gunboat diplomacy,” or the use of naval force for commercial gain. Comparisons between civilizations and across time show, first, that gunboat diplomacy was peculiarly European and, second, that it evolved through stages. For the majority of the modern era, violence was central to the commercial strategies of European state, private, and hybrid actors alike in the wider world. In contrast, large and small non-Western polities almost never sought to advance mercantile aims through naval coercion. European exceptionalism reflected a structural trade deficit, regional systemic dynamics favoring armed trade, and mercantilist beliefs. Changes in international norms later restricted the practice of gunboat diplomacy to states, as private navies became illegitimate. More generally, a maritime perspective suggests the need for a reappraisal of fundamental conceptual divisions and shows how the capital- and technology-intensive nature of naval war allowed relatively small European powers to be global players. It also explains how European expansion and the creation of the first global international system was built on dominance at sea centuries before Europeans’ general military superiority on land.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, International Security, Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Navy, Law of the Sea, Maritime
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Andriy Tyushka
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: The Eastern Partnership’s tenth-anniversary celebration in May 2019 by the European Union and its Eastern neighbors was anything but grandiose and festive. Internal EU developments, the overall political dynamics in the region and the indeterminacies of the Eastern Partnership project were the main cause. As the EU’s flagship policy initiative towards its Eastern European neighborhood is currently undergoing auditing and revision, this article seeks to cast a look back at how the Eastern Partnership has functioned over the past decade – and to think forward to its future(s) with regard to design and deliverables in face of the enduring and imminent policy dilemmas in this highly contested region.
  • Topic: Development, International Cooperation, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Public Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Belarus
  • Author: Myroslava Lendel
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: Since 2009, the main mechanism of Eurointegration in Ukraine, in addition to the bilateral diplomatic efforts and internally driven pro-European reforms, has been the Eastern Partnership (EaP), a multilateral project has that brought Kyiv both new opportunities and additional challenges and uncertainty. Although the positives outcomes have generally been welcomed, these have not detracted from the commonly held view among experts that despite good outcomes in stimulating economic reform, support for the new government and citizen institutions, and a tangible contribution to stability on the EU borders, the current strategy alone will not secure the stable development of the democracy and market economy in Eastern Europe generally, and Ukraine in particular. The commitment of these countries to general European principles has to be supported by the prospect of EU membership and that means revisiting the current format and especially the philosophy behind the Eastern Partnership. One possible scenario could be the formation of EaP+3 within the European Partnership, which would bring together Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova – the countries with Association Agreements with the EU – and a commitment to EU membership.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Public Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia
  • Author: Alexander Duleba
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: This article analyzes perceptions of the opportunities and problems in EU–Ukraine relations among officials from the European Commission and Ukraine’s government institutions involved in implementing the Association Agreement. It presents the findings of empirical research conducted through semi-structured interviews with ten representatives from the European Commission and ten representatives from Ukraine’s government institutions. The analysis shows that despite differences in their assessments of mutual relations and cooperation, which undoubtedly cause communication problems, there are no elements underpinning the mutual perceptions that would create major obstacles to EU–Ukraine cooperation over implementation of the Association Agreement. However, the research also shows that a sufficiently large number of obstacles do exist and these could slow the implementation of the Association Agreement.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Public Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine
  • Author: Petra Kuchyňková
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: According to Petra Kuchyňková, assistant professor at Masaryk University in Brno, the Eastern Partnership has been relatively successful, despite the frequent political instability in EaP countries. However, the EU has not always been consistent in its neighborhood policy. This is easily understood if we look at the heterogeneity of the EaP countries and the differences in the extent of Russian influence in the region. According to Kuchyňková, the EU should not abolish the sanctions on Russia unless there is visible progress in the Minsk process, so as to avoid damaging its reputation as normative actor. Cooperation between the EU and the EEU seems unlikely due the atmosphere of mistrust and suspicion. EU neighborhood policy could receive new impetus as a result of it being given more attention in the new multiannual financial framework.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Public Policy, Trade Liberalization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Belarus
  • Author: Slawomir Matuszak
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: The paper analyzes the first years of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union, focusing on the economic part: the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area agreement (DCFTA). It describes the causes and results of changes in the flow of goods, and the implications of these for Ukraine’s policy. The DCFTA was one of the key tools that allowed Ukraine to survive the difficult period of economic crisis. The aim of this article is to show to what extent, starting from 2015, Ukraine has begun to integrate with the EU market and at the same time become increasingly independent of the Russian market and more broadly the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union. It can be assumed that this process will only accelerate. It is just the first stage on the pathway followed by the countries of Central and Eastern Europe in the 1990s. To achieve full integration requires an increase in investment cooperation, currently at a fairly low level.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Cooperation, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Free Trade
  • Political Geography: Europe, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Belarus
  • Author: Maros Sefcovic
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: I am proud I can begin with one simple message – the Energy Union has become reality. Back in 2015, the Energy Union was only a political strategy on paper, one of the main political initiatives of the outgoing European Commission. It was built around five mutually supportive and interlinked dimensions, covering all energy and climate policies and associated policies: decarbonization; renewable energy sources; energy efficiency; security, solidarity and trust; a fully integrated internal energy market; and research, innovation and competitiveness. Since then, we have made the proposals and put in place all the legislation to meet our 2030 targets. In May this year, the Council of Ministers of the EU formally adopted four new pieces of EU legislation that redesign the EU electricity market to make it fit for the future, thus concluding the remaining elements of the Clean Energy for All Europeans package. This represented a major step toward completing the Energy Union, delivering on the priorities of the Juncker Commission. The Clean Energy for All Europeans package strikes the right balance between making bold decisions at the EU, national, and local level. Member states will continue to choose their own energy mix, but must meet new commitments to improve energy efficiency and the take-up of renewables in that mix by 2030.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Regional Cooperation, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Matus Misik
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: he European Commission asked all member states to submit their draft National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) by the end of 2018. Rooted in the Governance of the Energy Union regulation, the plans are intended to guide member states to help achieve the EU’s climate and energy goal, including the 2030 ones, by proposing national targets and roadmaps tailor-made for each country. As the 2030 goals are binding at the EU level, the national plans can be viewed as part of the Commission’s efforts to make member states responsible for achieving common goals and preventing them from blaming each other for not reaching these within the deadline. The present paper examines the NECPs of the Visegrad Four countries, focusing on their national targets for renewable energy sources, which are considered to be both crucial to and one of the most problematic aspects of the decarbonization process. It argues that by using the existing legal framework (Renewables Directive) as the benchmark for evaluating the NECPs, the Commission is pushing countries into increasing their 2030 national renewable targets. The ex ante nature of the assessments is another novel approach undertaken by the Commission and is aimed at strengthening its position vis-à-vis the member states and the supranational dimension of European integration in energy policy.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Regional Cooperation, European Union, Renewable Energy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Szymon Kardas
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: he main aim of the paper is to analyze the Nord Stream 2 project from the perspective of Russia’s foreign energy policy and strategic goals and interests of all stakeholders (the state, Gazprom and other Russian entities). While it is unclear whether the investment will bring economic benefits to Russia or to Gazprom alone, it is known that Moscow will derive a specific political dividend from it. By building a controversial gas pipeline, it has contributed to deepening divisions in the European Union and weakening the coherence of actions for a common energy policy. The Nord Stream 2 project is also presented as a case study describing different European approaches towards energy cooperation with Russia. Neoclassical realism has been adopted as the theoretical framework for the analysis. The paper includes basic facts regarding the history of the project and the key data concerning the pipeline.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Energy Policy, Natural Resources, Strategic Interests
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe
  • Author: Lukas Lehotsky, Mikulas Cernik
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: The article offers an overview of coal production policies in the Czech Republic – the third-largest coal consumer in the EU and a post-communist country struggling to take decisions over the future of the coal phase-out. It developed its phase- out policy in the early 1990s to address the destruction of the local environment. However, since then no steps have been taken in relation to phase-out. Instead, coal production stakeholders have attempted to maintain the coal lock-in and to reverse phase-out. The article begins by discussing the factors that have led to the ambiguity. It then places the discussion over the future of phase-out within the wider context of a just transition, and offers insights into the Czech case which may prove useful to other countries considering transitioning away from coal.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Natural Resources, Mining, Renewable Energy, Coal
  • Political Geography: Europe, Czech Republic
  • Author: Juraj Mesik
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Issues: Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs
  • Institution: Slovak Foreign Policy Association
  • Abstract: Four years after the Paris Agreement, atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration continues to rise at the same speed as it did before, reflecting unabated growth in global CO2 emissions. In the meantime, CO2 concentration reached 415 parts per million (ppm), a level not found on Earth for15 million years, since the Miocene era, when the average global temperature was at least 4 degrees Celsius higher and sea levels were at least 25 meters higher than today. Further rises in global temperature are unavoidable. The speed and maximum reached will, however, depend on how successful humankind is in achieving carbon neutrality within the coming years and decades. Many cities and towns, especially in subtropical and tropical climate zones, are already being confronted with the devastating effects of climate instability manifested in more frequent, widespread or intense droughts, wildfires, floods, heatwaves, storms and other phenomena, which lead to crop failure, water scarcity, economic devastation and socio-political and security instability. Cities and towns in Europe and other moderate climate regions will soon be confronted with similar situations, and these will make it difficult to fulfil the needs at the base of the Maslow pyramid of human needs. Now is the time for deep climate adaptation and resilience building, while European societies are still rich and stable. The failure to understand the causes and consequences of the climate crisis brings with it the risk of widespread disasters, including the potential collapse of urban centers.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Environment, Paris Agreement , Disaster Management
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Natasja Reslow
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The International Spectator
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: Unintended consequences arising from EU external migration policy are a result of the multi-actor nature of this policy and of policy interactions. In addition, scholars face serious methodological challenges in establishing what the EU’s ‘intent’ is in external migration policy and, therefore, in determining which consequences are intended and which are unintended. The literature on the implementation and evaluation of EU external migration policy is in its infancy, and future work should take into account all policy outcomes – both those that were intended and those that were not.
  • Topic: Migration, Immigration, Governance, Refugees
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Olga Burlyuk, Gergana Noutcheva
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The International Spectator
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: There is a gap in IR and EU scholarship concerning unintended consequences in an international context, leaving this important phenomenon understudied. To fill this gap, a conceptualisation of unintended consequences is offered, and a set of common research questions are presented, highlighting the nature (what), the causes (why) and the modes of management (how) of unintended consequences of EU external action. The Special Issue contributes to the study of the EU as an international actor by broadening the notion of the EU’s impact abroad to include the unintended consequences of EU (in)actions and by shedding new light on the conceptual paradigms that explain EU external action.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Dimitris Bouris
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The International Spectator
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: The existing literature on state-building has focused mainly on post-conflict cases and ‘conventional’ examples of statehood, without taking into consideration the particularities of states that remain internally and/or externally contested. The EU’s engagement in Palestinian state-building through the deployment of EUPOL COPPS and EUBAM Rafah has generated various types of unintended consequences: anticipated and unanticipated, positive and negative, desirable and undesirable, some of which fulfill and some of which frustrate the initial intention. These have important reverberations for the EU’s conflict resolution strategies in Israel and Palestine, the most important being the strengthening of power imbalances and the enforcement of the status quo.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, State, State Building, Police
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, Palestine, European Union
  • Author: Assem Dandashly, Gergana Noutcheva
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The International Spectator
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: The European Union’s (EU) impact on the political governance of the European neighbourhood is varied and sometimes opposite to the declared objectives of its democracy support policies. The democracy promotion literature has to a large extent neglected the unintended consequences of EU democracy support in Eastern Europe and the Middle East and North Africa. The EU has left multiple imprints on the political trajectories of the countries in the neighbourhood and yet the dominant explanation, highlighting the EU’s security and economic interests in the two regions,cannot fully account for the unintended consequences of its policies. The literature on the ‘pathologies’ of international organisations offers an explanation, emphasizing the failures of the EU bureaucracy to anticipate, prevent or reverse the undesired effects of its democracy support in the neighbourhood.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Democracy, Economy, Bureaucracy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Middle East, Eastern Europe, North Africa, European Union
  • Author: Frank de Zwart, Karolina Pomorska
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The International Spectator
  • Institution: Istituto Affari Internazionali
  • Abstract: “Unintended consequences” is an umbrella concept. It comprises phenomena that differ in crucial respects and consequently, without refinement, it remains a rather blunt instrument for policy analysis. The contributions in this volume, however, show that disentangling unintended consequences by making clear distinctions between various types, makes the concept much more useful for policy analysis. Assessing the impact of EU foreign policies as studied in this volume, we show that “bonuses”, “windfalls”, “accidents”, and “trade-offs” – all unintended – are very different when it comes to the explanation of policy outcomes, or to allocating responsibility for them.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Political Science, Unintended Consequences
  • Political Geography: Europe, European Union
  • Author: Steven Pifer
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: For nearly five decades, Washington and Moscow have engaged in negotiations to manage their nuclear competition. Those negotiations produced a string of acronyms—SALT, INF, START—for arms control agreements that strengthened strategic stability, reduced bloated nuclear arsenals and had a positive impact on the broader bilateral relationship. That is changing. The Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty is headed for demise. The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) has less than two years to run, and the administration of Donald Trump has yet to engage on Russian suggestions to extend it. Bilateral strategic stability talks have not been held in 18 months. On its current path, the U.S.-Russia nuclear arms control regime likely will come to an end in 2021. That will make for a strategic relationship that is less stable, less secure and less predictable and will further complicate an already troubled bilateral relationship.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Military Strategy, Nuclear Power, Deterrence, Denuclearization
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, North America
  • Author: Julius Tsal
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: In 2018, the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi initiated people-to-people (P2P) exchanges to the United States for agricultural scientists and university leaders from the Russian-occupied Georgian territory of Abkhazia. An initial study tour in the spring of 2018 focused on mitigating the devastating agricultural damage from the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB), and a second tour in the fall of 2018 focused on higher education leadership. Despite political sensitivities and logistical hurdles, such people-to-people programs increase participants’ understanding of the United States and give them an unbiased, first-hand experience of American civil society, its culture of innovation and democratic values. For otherwise isolated Abkhaz thought leaders, these experiences directly counter Russian anti-Western propaganda and demonstrate the benefits of Georgia’s pro-Western choice.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Civil Society, Imperialism, Propaganda
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Eastern Europe, Georgia, North America
  • Author: Gonul Tol
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: For decades, Turkey’s conflict with its own Kurdish minority has hindered the country’s democratization. But neither Turkey’s democratization nor the Kurdish quest for political rights has occupied an important place in U.S. policy. Turkey’s democratic shortcomings have been ignored by U.S. administrations for the sake of greater geostrategic interests. In a similar fashion, Kurdish rights have been overlooked in the game of power politics. Today’s regional context, however, ties Turkish democracy and the peaceful resolution of the Kurdish question to the U.S. security interests in the region. The United States must therefore pay closer attention to both. There is no doubt that most freedoms under Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have been dramatically curtailed. Opposition leaders continue to face arrest and prosecution. Authorities use anti-terror laws broadly against those who are critical of the government. Thousands of people—including minors, journalists, foreign journalists, human rights activists, and social media users—who exercise their right to freedom of expression face criminal prosecutions on trumped-up terrorism charges. The mainstream media are largely controlled by the government and routinely carry identical headlines. Most concerning of all, however, is the ongoing conflict between the Turkish state and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). A string of clashes in the mainly Kurdish region between the PKK and Turkish security forces has killed thousands since the ceasefire broke down in 2015—including 464 civilians, 1,166 Turkish security personnel, and 2,544 PKK militants—and displaced 350,000 people[1]. Both the PKK and the Turkish state played a role in the destruction of major segments of Kurdish cities. The political ramifications of the fighting have been equally disastrous. The Turkish state response has largely criminalized Kurdish political expression. Hundreds of Kurdish news outlets have been shut down. Thousands of Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) activists and dozens of Kurdish co-mayors and HDP parliamentarians remain in prison. The Turkish government has removed elected mayors in Kurdish regions and installed government-appointed trustees in all but a few of the 102 HDP-controlled municipalities.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Cooperation, Democracy, Strategic Interests
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: Donald Blinken
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Ambassador's Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: The imminent return of Radio Free Europe service to Hungary is a new chapter in an old story, a case of history reinventing itself. Radio Free Europe was an indispensable resource during the Cold War. Its broadcasts were often the only truthful information available to people behind the Iron Curtain, countering their governments’ lies and propaganda. But with the fall of Communism and the advent of open, democratic political systems throughout Central and Eastern Europe, the need for Radio Free Europe ceased. At that time, its broadcast office in Munich was being shut down, and its radio archives could no longer be stored there. Officials planned to discard the trove of audio tapes and transcripts. But today, some 22 years after the return of the tapes, Hungary once again faces a serious free-press deficit: the Hungarian people now obtain their news from government-controlled or -monitored print and online sources. Radio Free Europe’s return to Hungary, therefore, could not come at a more necessary and important time.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Mass Media, Authoritarianism, Democracy, Media, Freedom of Press
  • Political Geography: Europe, Hungary, Central Europe
  • Author: Aaron Edwards, Paul Cruickshank, Stephen Hummel, Douglas McNair, F. John Burpo, James Bonner, Audrey Alexander, Bennett Clifford, Caleb Weiss
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: CTC Sentinel
  • Institution: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point
  • Abstract: The murder earlier this month of journalist Lyra McKee in Northern Ireland on the night before Good Friday illustrates the fragility of peace in a region in which terrorist violence has persisted. In our cover article, Aaron Edwards writes that this was “the latest in a series of incidents that have raised the specter of a surge in terrorist violence in Northern Ireland.” In examining the evolution of the threat from militant groupings on both sides of the sectarian divide, he notes there has been a “blurring of the concepts of terrorism and criminality that challenges orthodox perspectives on the security landscape in Northern Ireland.” Our interview is with Edmund Fitton-Brown, the Coordinator of the ISIL (Daesh)/Al-Qaida/Taliban Monitoring Team at the United Nations. This issue features the concluding article of a two-article series focused on IED and WMD network convergence. The first article, published in our February 2019 issue, warned there was a high risk that profit-minded suppliers within vast, transnational IED networks may expand in the future into WMD proliferation. In the second article, Major Stephen Hummel, Lieutenant Colonel Douglas McNair, Colonel F. John Burpo, and Brigadier General James Bonner examine in greater detail the ways this could happen. Audrey Alexander and Bennett Clifford examine the threat posed by Islamic State-affiliated hackers and hacking groups. Through “analysis of several U.S. prosecutions of Islamic State-affiliated hackers and their networks, proficiencies, and activities,” they argue that “very few of these actors demonstrate advanced hacking or cyberterrorism capabilities.” Caleb Weiss examines the evolution of the threat posed by the Islamic State in Somalia, noting the group, “which is believed to only number in the low hundreds of fighters, appears to have significantly expanded its operations across Somalia, albeit from a relatively low base.” He argues the resulting reignition of tensions with the much larger al-Qa`ida affiliate al-Shabaab means “it is far from clear whether the Islamic State in Somalia will be able to sustain its operational expansion.”
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Terrorism, United Nations, Taliban, Counter-terrorism, Al Qaeda, Islamic State, Al Shabaab, Doxxing
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, Middle East, Ireland, Somalia
  • Author: Amarnath Amarasingam, Brian Michael Jenkins, Paul Cruickshank, Mitchell D. Silber, Haroro J. Ingram, Craig Whiteside, Charlie Winter
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: CTC Sentinel
  • Institution: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point
  • Abstract: The Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka took the terrorism studies community by surprise because there had been no known history of jihadi violence inside the country and very little to indicate that local groups had the wherewithal to carry out such a large-scale coordinated operation. There is much that remains unclear about the links between the Sri Lankan cell and the Islamic State, but nearly 18 years after 9/11, the suicide bombings were a reminder that clandestine terrorist groups can, at any moment, strike in unexpected places and ways. In our cover article, Amarnath Amarasingam, whose research has focused on both Sri Lanka and global terrorism, outlines what is known about the network that carried out the Easter attacks and situates the attacks in the broader context of evolving intercommunal tensions in the country. Brian Michael Jenkins examines the options for dealing with the significant numbers of Islamic State foreign fighters currently detained in Syria, warning that “endless delay” risks creating a serious threat to international security. Our interview is with Vidhya Ramalingam, the co-founder of Moonshot CVE, a company using technology to disrupt and counter violent extremism globally. Mitchell Silber examines how the terrorist threat against Jews in the West has evolved by examining attacks between 2012 and the present day. He notes that “what may be the most striking findings from this case study analysis are that first, Europe has become the focal point of the jihadi terror threat to Jews in the West and second, the United States has become a new, emerging focal point of the extreme right-wing terror threat to Jews in the West.” Last month, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi appeared for the first time on camera since the Islamic State heralded its ‘caliphate’ in Mosul’s al-Nuri mosque five years ago. Haroro Ingram, Craig Whiteside, and Charlie Winter explain how the video underlined the group’s strategic transformation with the Islamic State’s leader now portraying himself as “the guerrilla ‘caliph’ of a global insurgency.”
  • Topic: Terrorism, Counter-terrorism, Islamic State, Judaism, Foreign Fighters
  • Political Geography: Europe, South Asia, Middle East, Sri Lanka, Syria, United States of America