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  • Author: Stefan Ihrig
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: German-Turkish relations in the twentieth century were at times very good and very close, at times cold, semi-colonial, and often difficult, but always complex and never black and white. Even when relations were friendly, as before and during World War One, the German side often tried to dominate the Ottoman Empire in some way which led to resentment among those who became aware of this—most prominently perhaps Atatürk. And at times when interactions between the two peoples seemed to focus prominently on such aspects as education and academia, as during the National Socialism period when a number of German academics found a temporary home in Turkey, some Germany were not happy about this new kind of closeness between the two peoples. A good history of German-Turkish relations still needs to be written, and there is much to disentangle and uncover until then, but this edited volume by Şen and Halm is another step towards a better understanding of this highly entangled history and inserts itself into the ever growing body of literature on the subject.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Germany
  • Author: Robbie Diamond
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: Leading up to World War II, Japan and Germany were well aware that their ships, tanks and planes were completely dependent on oil. The Fischer- Tropsch process—invented in Germany some years earlier—allowed the Germans to produce 72,000 barrels a day of synthetic fuel from coal by 1940. However, the synthetic fuels were not enough and the principal goal of the march into the Soviet Union was the rich oilfields of Baku on the Caspian Sea.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Japan, Germany, Caspian Sea
  • Author: Dr. Michael Epkenhans
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: At least twice in the history of Imperial Germany, December seems to have been a rather critical month: On 17 December 1887, the ageing German Emperor, Wilhelm I, convened his military entourage at his bed in the castle of Berlin to listen to the reports of his generals about the military situation of the Empire. Under normal circumstances, these reports by Germany's highest-ranking generals, the Chief of Staff and his Quarter Master General, the Prussian Minister of War, and the chief of the Military Cabinet were by no means unusual. Against the background of a political situation which seemed to be deteriorating for several years now, this meeting, however, turned out to be a war-council. For many months the Quarter Master General of the Prussian Army, General v. Waldersee had been pleading for a preventive war against Russia. Germany's eastern neighbour had been quarreling with the nation's most reliable ally, Austria-Hungary, over the Balkans for more than two years now, and according to secret reports about the redeployment of troops on its western border seemed to prepare for a war against the powers of the dual alliance. From a military point of view a solution to this problem seemed urgent, not the least because of the hostile attitude of Germany's western neighbour, France. Waldersee's plea for war was supported by the 87-year-old Chief of the General Staff, Moltke the Elder, and Prince William, whose influence had become ever more important due to his father's fatal illness.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Russia, Germany, Hungary, Austria, Berlin, Prussia
  • Author: Dr. Eugenia Kiesling
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: A common military history examination question at West Point is "Discuss the proposition that good strategy always beats good tactics." I tell my cadets that if they cannot answer an examination question, they should modify it they can. Behind our eight stimulating "Workshop Questions" lies a world view which I would summarize as follows. Strategy is literally crucial—the crux of war. Military failures, failures of what my friend Wick Murray calls "military effectiveness," usually being at the strategic level—or stem from a failure to integrate strategy with sound policy. Strategic effectiveness requires not only clear and achievable goals but good policy, sound institutions, and political will.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Germany
  • Author: Heike Larson
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Objective Standard
  • Institution: The Objective Standard
  • Abstract: Infidel is a heroic, inspiring story of a courageous woman who escapes the hell of a woman's life in the Muslim world and becomes an outspoken and blunt defender of the West. Ms. Hirsi Ali takes the reader on her own journey of discovery, and enables him to see, through concretes and by sharing her thought processes, how she arrived at the conclusion that Islam is a stagnant, tyrannical belief system and that the Enlightenment philosophy of the West is the proper system for human beings. In Part I, Ms. Hirsi Ali describes her childhood in Muslim Africa and the Middle East. With her father imprisoned for opposing Somalia's communist dictator Siad Barré and her mother often preoccupied with finding food for her family, young Ayaan and her siblings grew up listening to the ancient legends their grandmother told them-legends glorifying the Islamic values of honor, family clans, physical strength, and aggression. Born in 1969 in Somalia, Ms. Hirsi Ali moved frequently with her family to escape persecution and civil war, living in Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia, and Kenya. At a colonially influenced Kenyan school, she discovered Western ideas, in the form of novels, "tales of freedom, adventure, of equality between girls and boys, trust and friendship. These were not like my grandmother's stark tales of the clan, with their messages of danger and suspicion. These stories were fun, they seemed real, and they spoke to me as the old legends never had" (p. 64). Forced into an arranged marriage, she was shipped to Germany to stay with distant family while awaiting a visa for Canada to join the husband she didn't know. At age twenty-two, alone and with nothing but a duffle bag of clothes and papers, she took a train to Holland to escape the dreary life of a Muslim wife-slave. "It was Friday, July 24, 1992, when I stepped on the train. Every year I think of it. I see it as my real birthday: the birth of me as a person, making decisions about my life on my own" (p. 188). In Part II, Ms. Hirsi Ali shares her wonder of arriving in modernity, and her relentless effort to create a productive, independent life for herself. After being granted asylum, she worked menial jobs, learned Dutch, became a Swahili translator, earned a vocational degree, and finally graduated with a degree in political science from one of Holland's most prestigious universities. An outspoken advocate of the rights of Muslim women, she was elected to the Dutch parliament in 2003, as a "one-issue politician"-she "wanted Holland to wake up and stop tolerating the oppression of Muslim women in its midst" and to "spark a debate among Muslims about reforming aspects of Islam so people could begin to question" (p. 295). She became a notorious critic of Islam, at one point daring to call the Prophet Muhammad a pervert for consummating marriage with one of his many wives when she was only nine years old. In 2004, she made a short film called Submission: Part 1 in which she depicted women mistreated under Islamic law raising their heads and refusing to submit any longer. Tragically, the film's producer, Theo van Gogh, was brutally murdered by an offended Muslim, who left on van Gogh's body a letter threatening Ms. Hirsi Ali with the same fate. Since 2004, Ms. Hirsi Ali has had to live under the constant watch of bodyguards, often going into hiding for months at a time. Although the straight facts of her life are in and of themselves admirable, Ms. Hirsi Ali's intellectual journey as presented in Infidel is truly awe inspiring. This journey begins in Africa in the disturbingly dark world of Islam-with its disdain for thought and reason, its self-sacrificial ethics, and its corrupt, tyrannical politics-and ends in the West with her having become an outspoken champion of reason and freedom.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa, Canada, Germany
  • Author: David Beckworth
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Cato Journal
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The historian Niall Ferguson can never be accused of lacking boldness. Over the past decade he has argued, among other things, that Europe would have been better off had Great Britain stayed out of World War I and allowed Germany to win, that the British empire provided a global public good that benefited the world economy, and that the United States should follow suit today by more actively embracing the demands of empire. He has also been championing the burgeoning field of counterfactual history, a development that many historians consider controversial given its speculative nature.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Germany
  • Author: Elizabeth A. Stanley
  • Publication Date: 07-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Security
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Throughout history, shifts in governing coalitions have critically affected war termination. For example, the execution of the Athenian democratic ruler Cleophon and the ascendancy of the pro-Spartan oligarchs in B.C. 404 led to Athens' surrender to Sparta and ended the twenty-seven-year Second Peloponnesian War. Similarly, the death of Russian Empress Elizabeth in January 1762 led her Prussophile successor, Peter III, to immediately recall Russian armies that were occupying Berlin and conclude the Treaty of Saint Petersburg by May—ending the fighting between Russia and Prussia in the Seven Years' War. During World War I, riots in Germany ushered in a new government that then negotiated the final war armistice, as Kaiser Wilhelm II fied to Holland. Likewise, during World War II, France and Italy surrendered shortly after changes in their governing coalitions, in 1940 and 1943, respectively. Most recently, on his first full day in office, U.S. President Barack Obama summoned senior officials to the White House to begin fulfilling his campaign promise to pull combat forces out of the war in Iraq.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Iraq, France, Germany, Korea, Prussia
  • Author: Simon Serfaty
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Affairs
  • Institution: The European Institute
  • Abstract: Germans have developed a new mindset, especially about military force, and they are offended, not swayed, by attempts to play on their nation's guilt for World War II. How badly Bush and Blair blundered in misunderstanding this new Germany is described by Serfaty in this excerpt from his new book, Architects of Delusion.
  • Topic: Security, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Europe, Germany, Berlin
  • Author: John David Lewis
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Objective Standard
  • Institution: The Objective Standard
  • Abstract: During World War II, the prime source of information for Americans about the war overseas was the dispatches of foreign correspondents-men who put their lives on the line in war zones to report the truth. George Weller was a giant among such men. Captured by the Nazis and traded for a German journalist, Weller watched the Belgian Congolese Army attack Italians in Ethiopia, saw the invasion of Crete, interviewed Charles de Gaulle in South Africa following an escape through Lisbon, and overcame malaria to report on the war in the Pacific. He was the first foreign correspondent trained as a paratrooper, and he won a Pulitzer Prize for his report of an appendectomy on a submarine. He wrote the book Singapore is Silent in 1942 after seeing the city fall to the Japanese, and he advocated a global system of United States bases in his 1943 book Bases Overseas. After witnessing Japan's surrender on September 2, 1945, he broke General Douglas MacArthur's order against travel to Nagasaki by impersonating an American colonel and taking a train to the bombed-out city. In a period of six weeks, he sent typewritten dispatches totaling some fifty thousand words back to American newspapers through official channels of the military occupation. Under MacArthur's directives, they were censored and never made it into print. Weller died in 2002 thinking his dispatches had been lost. Months later his son, Anthony Weller, found a crate of moldy papers with the only surviving carbon copies. Anthony Weller edited the dispatches and included his own essay about his father, resulting in this priceless addition to our information about World War II in the Pacific, and the birth of the atomic age. The importance of the dispatches, however, extends far beyond the value of the information from Nagasaki. George Weller is a voice from a past generation, and the publication of his censored dispatches raises a series of deeply important issues and, in the process, reveals an immense cultural divide between his world and ours today. On September 8, 1945, two days after he arrived in Nagasaki, Weller wrote his third dispatch concerning Nagasaki itself. He described wounded Japanese in two of Nagasaki's undestroyed hospitals, and recorded the question posed by his official guide: Showing them to you, as the first American outsider to reach Nagasaki since the surrender, your propaganda-conscious official guide looks meaningfully in your face and wants to know: "What do you think?" What this question means is: Do you intend writing that America did something inhuman in loosing this weapon against Japan? That is what we want you to write (p. 37). What would many reporters today write if asked this question by bombed enemy civilians? . . .
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Japan, America, Germany, Nagasaki
  • Author: Birgül Demirtas-Coskun
  • Publication Date: 03-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Institution: Uluslararasi Iliskiler
  • Abstract: This study analyses the foreign policies of Turkey and Germany toward the Bosnian War, that took place between 1992-1995, in a comparative perspective. Both states had to face an identity crisis in the wake of the phasing out of the bipolar system. Whilst Turkey, all of a sudden, lost its former status within the Western Bloc, Germany could be reunified in a relatively short period of time. The war in Bosnia took place at the very time when an important discussion was continuing about the new position of these aforementioned countries. In view of traditional International Relations theories Turkey, on the one hand, was expected to focus on its internal problems; Germany, on the other hand, was foreseen to pursue an active foreign policy thanks to the new dynamism acquired by reunification. However, what happened in the case of Bosnia was, in fact, the reverse. The main argument of this study is that one of the main factors shaping the foreign policies of Ankara and Berlin toward Bosnia was the ultimate intention to maintain their former state identities in the new era.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Bosnia, Turkey, Germany
  • Author: Martin H. Geyer
  • Publication Date: 06-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: German Politics and Society
  • Institution: German Politics and Society Journal
  • Abstract: Sports have always been used to promote the nation state and the invention of national traditions with national symbols such as flags and national hymns playing an important role. This article looks at the peculiar situation of the post-war period when two Germanys established themselves also in the field of sports, yet cooperated in some athletic disciplines, and, most important of all, at the Olympic Games until 1968. This raised a great number of delicate political questions, particularly the politics of the nonrecognition of the GDR which strove hard to establish itself internationally by way of the international sports movement. Konrad Adenauer and the German Sports Organization clashed on this issue which brought to the fore the question of a German and an emerging West-German identity. In order to describe this negotiation of the nation state in the realm of sports, this article tries to make fruitful use of the term postnationalism in order to understand the ambiguities of identity of Germans towards their nation state. It also takes a brief look at the Olympic Games of 1972, which epitomizes more than anything else the peculiar postnationalism of the Federal Republic.
  • Topic: Politics, War
  • Political Geography: Germany
  • Author: Kenneth E. Silver
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Silverman's intent is to emphasize the "critical role of religion in the development of modernism." As an addendum to that pursuit, it should be pointed out that, well into the twentieth century, religion remained crucial to artistic innovation and development (and still is). We now recognize how important apocalyptic imagery was to Wasily Kandinsky's abstraction. In the wake of the Second World War, and French occupation by the Germans, religion made a powerful reappearance in the art of the avant-garde. Henri Matisse's Chapel of the Rosary at Vence is one of the great works of this period; it is worth briefly examining the ways in which Matisse understood the intersection between modern art and his reengagement with Catholicism.
  • Topic: Development, War
  • Political Geography: Germany
  • Author: Joshua Cole
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: In October 1961, an as yet undetermined number of Algerian protesters were killed by the police in Paris while demonstrating for Algerian independence. In the last two decades, these killings have become the focal point of a public controversy in France, as questions about the memory of the Algerian war converged with debates about immigration and citizenship in the 1980s and 1990s and with the willingness of the French state to confront the crimes committed during the last phase of decolonization between 1945 and 1962. Most commentaries have emphasized the connections of this debate with an earlier bout of French soul-searching over the question of the Vichy government's collaboration with Germany during World War II. This connection seemed all the more relevant when the man who was the prefect of police in Paris in 1961, Maurice Papon, was accused and eventually convicted of assisting in the deportation of Jews from Bordeaux in 1942-1944. This article argues that the public attention to the connections between Maurice Papon and the Holocaust have obscured the extent to which the debate in France about October 1961 has been driven by developments in Algerian politics in the last four decades. The extent to which historical accounts of the events of October 1961 are shaped by very contemporary political concerns presents particular challenges to the historian, who must find a way of retelling the story without merely reproducing the ideological conflict that produced the violence in the first place.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Paris, France, Germany, Algeria