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  • Author: Harold Trinkunas
  • Publication Date: 05-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
  • Abstract: In the wake of the Cold War, regional democratization and economic liberalization were supposed to usher in an opportunity to build a common hemispheric security agenda, designed to unite the United States and Latin America in collaboration against the "new" security threats posed by organized crime and violent nonstate actors. Two decades later, the threats remain much the same, yet the hemispheric security agenda has fragmented, replaced in part by projects designed to build specifically South American regional institutions. As some scholars predicted, heterogeneous threat perceptions across the region, differences over democratization, and tensions over the effects of free trade and market liberalization have confounded the effort to build a hemispheric security agenda. Yet the efforts by former President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela to radically transform the regional security order by building a Bolivarian alliance of states as an explicit counterweight to U.S. power have also fallen short. Instead, Brazil's ascent as a global economic power and the growing prosperity of the region as a whole has created an opportunity for Brazil to organize new mid-range political institutions, embodied in the Union of South American States (UNASUR), that exclude the United States yet pursue a consensual security agenda. This emerging regional order is designed by Brazil to secure its leadership in South America and allow it to choose when and where to involve the United States in managing regional crises. Yet, Brazil is finding that the very obstacles that confounded hemispheric security collaboration after the Cold War still endure in South America, limiting the effectiveness of the emerging regional security order.
  • Topic: Security, Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Brazil, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Devi Nampiaparampil
  • Publication Date: 05-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
  • Abstract: Latin Lessons: How South America Stopped Listening to the United States and Started Prospering Hal Weitzman(Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley Sons, 2012), 260 pages.
  • Topic: Cold War, War on Drugs
  • Political Geography: United States, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Scott Nicolas Romaniuk
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Over the past century, a gradual shift has taken place in which the conditions for total war have considerably faded. This steady realignment toward full-scale war, however, exposes the many varieties of force that still exist along a continuum bookended by the state of absolute war and that of peace. Much has been written about the occurrence of full-scale war within the international system, yet the level of attention given to what occurs when neither a state of peace nor state of war exists remains somewhat derisory. The last two decades, in particular, can be characterized as a state of threat within which varying degrees of the utility of force have persisted. Such processes and practices with public spheres are slowly being examined but questions of why specific forms of forms have continued to be used despite criticism of their political and military effectiveness are seldom raised. Moreover, they continue to go unanswered even though they have become relatively commonplace and seem to be the preferred policy option of US administrations. Academics addressing issues of evolving military culture and technological base within the 21st century have only begun to delve into the nature of America's discrete military operations (DMOs) but rarely depict them in terms of their implication for the future of military practice.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Liora Danan, Johanna Mendelson Forman
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS)
  • Abstract: Foreign internal conflicts clearly remain a permanent feature of the u.S. foreign policy landscape, especially since the united States regularly participates in efforts to stabilize countries affected by conflict and then helps them recover afterwards. Yet u.S. government officials and the american public in general have difficulty accepting the inevitability of u.S. involvement in such efforts. to ensure lasting progress and security in post-conflict situations, the united States must adjust its approach from a focus on large military operations to preparing adequately for small-scale, long-term interventions. Most u.S. military deployments since the end of the Cold War have been in “small wars” or what the Department of Defense once called “military operations other than war.”1 Yet the military has usually been more prepared to fight large, technologically advanced wars than smaller contingencies that require greater integration with civilian capacities. as a consequence, each time the u.S. military is deployed to a complex–but “small”–emergency, it has had to relearn lessons on the ground about the best way to manage these types of contingencies. Civilian participation in stabilization and reconstruction efforts is likewise inevitable, but civilian institutions are even less prepared for such work than the military. Lessons learned over the last decade are only recently being institutionalized, through offices like Department of State's Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO) and the u.S. agency for International Development's Office of transition Initiatives (OtI). In part this is due to bureaucratic politics.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Kari Mottola
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS)
  • Abstract: Despite the apparent strength of their case, the community of planners, veterans, think-tankers and civic activists working in external security and humanitarian missions are puzzled and frustrated with the past and present performance of the United States in such missions, and anguished about the future.2 It is not that the United States has not taken action in foreign conflicts, regional instabilities or humanitarian catastrophes. It is not that the response to fragile or failed states has not been a key agenda item in U.S. foreign and security policy throughout the post-Cold War era. Where America as a polity has come short is in failing to recognize, as a permanent national security interest, the need to design and pursue a strategic policy on stabilization and reconstruction. While the concept may be debatable and the capability may be constrained by developments, what those devoted to the cause call for is a policy with a sustainable balance between ends and means and commensurate to the responsibility of U.S. global leadership.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Jeffrey Herbst, Alan Doss, Greg Mills
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS)
  • Abstract: The African development and governance picture is today highly differentiated with some countries developing successful democracies while riding a wave of growth, others facing outright institutional failure, and a great number in-between. Critical to understanding the different paths that countries have taken, and the likely even greater divergences in the future, is the relationship between civilians and soldiers. Starting soon after independence in the early 1960s, the seizure of power by soldiers was emblematic of the problems African states faced in promoting good governance. Now, at a time when most soldiers are back in their barracks, economic growth has accelerated and democratization has progressed. However, the picture varies greatly from country-to-country. In this paper, we develop a taxonomy of African militaries to understand why some countries have better civil-military relations than others, what is the likely path in the future, and the potential role, if any, for outsiders. African militaries are characterised, just as African states themselves, by different capacities and civil-military records.
  • Topic: Security, Cold War, Political Economy, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, Sierra Leone
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS)
  • Abstract: What lessons have you personally drawn from the decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan? Blair: The decade of war is really two decades of war–from the time the Cold War ended in about 1989 through the disappearance of the Soviet threat and the involvement of the United States in a series of individual military actions. What I've learned is that we need to do a better job thinking these conflicts all the way through before we engage in them. Because it turns out that we are relearning an old lesson, which is the use of military force is only a part of improving a situation and protecting American interests in a particular country or region. Too often, we think that a military victory itself will cause the desired result. In fact many other factors come in to play; economic development, social development, government improvement. These are not accomplished by the U.S. alone, and certainly not by American military force alone, but often with allies and other partners, and with other civilian capabilities. I think we have not thought them through carefully as to the end state that we are trying to achieve. Next we need to be realistic about the resources that are required; military, civil, and other. I'm afraid these are old lessons that need to be relearned, not new lessons, but they certainly have been borne out as some of the shortcomings of the interventions we have made in recent years. I would add, by the way, that I am not one who says our military interventions since 1989 have all been disasters. I think on the whole they have made the world a better place; bad people who were around then aren't around now, from Manuel Noriega to Saddam Hussein through Slobodan Milosevic and others; so it is not that our military interventions have been wasted. On the contrary–but we need to make sure that we get the maximum possible benefit from them and intervene in a smart way.
  • Topic: Cold War, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Daniel R. Lake
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States was left alone with an unusual degree of power preponderance. Such a position of preponderance could have led to a series of unilateral military interventions, but instead, the United States has intervened multilaterally more often than not. In Coalitions of Convenience , Sarah E. Kreps offers a convincing explanation for this mixture of unilateralism and multilateralism.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Soviet Union
  • Author: Amnon Aran
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: Containment is the term generally used to characterize American policy towards the USSR after the Second World War, when it consisted of a series of attempts to deal with the power and position won by the USSR in order to reshape postwar international order. Containment, as originally articulated by its chief architect, George F. Kennan, was always contested, for example because it did not clarify whether Soviet behaviour had strictly national or ideological roots, and would result in the USSR's having the initiative about where and when to act. Nonetheless, throughout the Cold War it remained US policy, partly because of the failure in 1953-4 of the alternative, 'liberation' and 'rollback'. Although containment changed and sometimes seemed to have broken down, for example in the Vietnam War, the imprint of Kennan's ideas—perhaps more than anyone else's—endured. After 1989 it seemed that containment had no place in the peaceful multilateral environment which seemed to be emerging; however, it proved adaptable to a range of post-Cold War situations, including some which appear to have little in common with the context and goals of containment's original formulation: among these are the challenges posed to US national security by the so-called rogue states.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Israel, Soviet Union
  • Author: Paul Avey
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Security
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: U.S. policy during the early Cold War is better explained by balance of power logic than ideology. Not only did the United States initially seek to cooperate with the Soviet Union, shifting toward a confrontational approach only when the balance of power tilted in the Soviet Union's favor, but it later sought to engage communist groups that promised to undermine Soviet power. Given the vast differences between U.S. and Soviet ideology, the United States' willingness to put ideology aside in these instances suggests that relative power concerns are more important in generating and shaping confrontational foreign policies than is ideology.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Soviet Union