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  • Author: Louise Riis Andersen, Richard Gowan
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: UN peacekeeping is in need of change. Missions struggle to fulfil ambitious mandates in hostile environments. To improve performance and regain global trust, the UN needs tangible support and engagement from its member states, including smaller states with specialized military capabilities. RECOMMENDATIONS Smaller member states can contribute to UN peacekeeping operations by: ■ offering critical enablers (intelligence expertise, tactical air transport, medical services) and working with larger troop contributors to enhance their capacity in these areas. ■ developing guidance materials, technological tools and additional training for troop contributors, e.g. on medical support, prevention of sexual abuse and data analysis. ■ if aid donors, triangulate with the UN and the World Bank to identify projects to sustain security in countries where UN forces are drawing down.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, International Organization, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Europe, Denmark, Global Focus
  • Author: Luke Patey
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Much of Europe’s attention to Asia is currently being captured by China. However, if the European Union and its member states are serious about maintaining a rules-based global order and advancing multilateralism and connectivity, it should increase its work in building partnerships across Asia, particularly in the Indo-Pacific super-region. To save multilateralism, go to the Indo-Pacific. RECOMMENDATIONS: ■ Multilateralism first. Unpack and differentiate where the United States and China support the rules-based order and where not, but also look to new trade deals and security pacts with India and Southeast Asia partners. ■ Targeted connectivity. The EU should continue to offer support to existing regional infrastructure and connectivity initiatives. ■ Work in small groups. EU unanimity on China and Indo-Pacific policy is ideal, but not always necessary to get things done. ■ Asia specialists wanted. Invest in and develop career paths for Asia specialists in foreign and defence ministries and intelligence services.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Emerging Markets, International Organization, Science and Technology, Power Politics, European Union
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Camilla Tenna Nørup Sørensen
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: U.S.-China strategic rivalry is intensifying – and nowhere more so than in the Indo-Pacific. This is likely to result in new US requests to close allies like Denmark to increase their security and defense policy contributions to the region. French and British efforts to establish an independent European presence in the Indo-Pacific present Denmark with a way to accommodate US requests without being drawn directly into the US confrontation with China. RECOMMENDATIONS ■ The importance of the Indo-Pacific region for Danish security and defense policy is likely to grow in the coming years. The focus and resources should therefore be directed towards strengthening Danish knowledge of and competences in the region. ■ Several European states, led by France and the UK, are increasing their national and joint European security and defense profiles in the Indo-Pacific by launching new initiatives. Denmark should remain closely informed about these initiatives and be ready to engage with them. ■ Regarding potential requests to the Danish Navy for contributions to the Indo-Pacific, Denmark should prioritize the French-led European naval diplomacy.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Politics, Power Politics
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Asia, Denmark, North America, United States of America
  • Author: JD Work, Richard Harknett
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: Reported Iranian intrusions against Israeli critical infrastructure networks and alleged Israeli actions against Iranian proliferation-associated targets pose substantial new challenges to understanding ongoing competition and conflict in the Middle East. These cyber exchanges may be interpreted through two distinct lenses: as the struggle to achieve deterrence using the instrument of cyber operations, or as the contest for initiative in order to establish conditions for relative security advantage in a cyber-persistent environment. Either way, these ongoing incidents are best understood not as “bolt out of the blue” attacks, but rather fleeting glimpses of continuing cyber campaigns leveraging previously disclosed and newly developed capabilities as each side grapples to anticipate cyber vulnerability and shape the conditions of exploitation. The opaque nature of these interactions is further complicated by potential bureaucratic politics and interservice rivalries, as well as unknown dynamics of a counter-proliferation campaign to slow, disrupt and potentially destroy Iranian nuclear capacity. In the end, observed cyber actions may not represent reflections of accurate strategic calculation, and even if aligned to the operational environment they may not lead to intended outcomes. Continuous failure to deter, or inability to manage persistent interactions, may lead to greater dangers.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Cybersecurity, Non-Traditional Threats
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Jeffrey Cimmino, Matthew Kroenig, Barry Pavel
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic is a strategic shock, and its almost immediate, damaging effects on the global economy constitute a secondary disruption to global order. Additional secondary strategic shocks (e.g., in the developing world) are looming. Together, these developments pose arguably the greatest threat to the global order since World War II. In the aftermath of that conflict, the United States and its allies established a rules-based international system that has guaranteed freedom, peace, and prosperity for decades. If the United States and its allies do not act effectively, the pandemic could upend this order. This issue brief considers the current state of the pandemic and how it has strained the global rules-based order over the past few months. First, it considers the origins of the novel coronavirus and how it spread around the world. Next, it examines how COVID-19 has exacerbated or created pressure points in the global order, highlights uncertainties ahead, and provides recommendations to the United States and its partners for shaping the post-COVID-19 world.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, NATO, Diplomacy, Politics, European Union, Economy, Business , Coronavirus, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, South Asia, Eurasia, India, Taiwan, Asia, North America, Korea, United States of America, Indo-Pacific
  • Author: Scott Crino, Conrad "Andy" Dreby
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: The use of drones as weapons in the Middle East and North Africa has grown rapidly in recent years, especially as non-state actors from the Houthis in Yemen to militants in Syria seek to level the playing field. Often powered by widely available commercial technology, these systems present a real and present security challenge. What should policymakers do to adapt to this new threat? How can they best structure defenses and leverage available technology to protect key assets? “Drone Attacks Against Critical Infrastructure,” by Dr. Scott Crino and Conrad “Andy” Dreby, addresses these questions and more. Crino is founder and CEO and Dreby is director of red-teaming at Red Six Solutions, LLC. The authors analyze developments in the use of weaponized drones in the Middle East and beyond, exploring how regional policymakers can adapt to mitigate this threat.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Weapons , Drones
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Syria, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Matthew Kroenig, Mark Massa, Christian Trotti
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: In 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced five new nuclear-capable, strategic weapons systems. These systems include a nuclear-powered, nuclear-armed cruise missile and a nuclear-powered, nuclear-armed submarine drone. What does Russia have to gain from developing these novel and exotic nuclear weapons? And what should the United States and NATO do about it? This new Atlantic Council issue brief, Russia’s Exotic Nuclear Weapons and Implications for the United States and NATO, answers these questions. Informed by a workshop convened by the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and Los Alamos National Laboratory, authors Matthew Kroenig, Mark Massa, and Christian Trotti evaluate the potential utility, motivations, and consequences of these new systems. Among other conclusions, the most significant may be that great-power competition has returned, and with it, the importance of nuclear weapons in international politics.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Nuclear Power, Deterrence
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Eurasia, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Monika Chansoria
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Japan Institute Of International Affairs (JIIA)
  • Abstract: Bilateral defense cooperation agreements (DCAs) have become the most common form of institutionalized defense cooperation. These formal agreements establish broad defense-oriented legal frameworks between signatories, facilitating cooperation in fundamental areas such as defense policy coordination, research and development, joint military exercises, education and training, arms procurement, and exchange of classified information. Nearly a thousand DCAs are currently in force, with potentially wideranging impacts on national and international security outcomes. A theory that integrates cooperation theory with insights from social network analysis explains the significance and need for DCAs. Shifts in the global security environment since the 1980s fueled the demand for DCAs. Ever since, States are known to have used DCAs to modernize their militaries, respond to shared security threats, and establish security umbrellas with like-minded states. However, the DCA proliferation cannot be attributed to the demand factor alone. Nations are required also to overcome dilemmas of mistrust and distributional conflicts. Network influences can increase the supply of DCAs by providing governments with information about the trustworthiness of partners and the risk of asymmetric distributions of gains. Two specific network influences that can be identified here are—preferential attachment and triadic closure. They show that these influences are largely responsible for the post-Cold War diffusion of DCAs. Novel empirical strategies further indicate that these influences derive from the proposed informational mechanism. States use the DCA ties of others to glean information about prospective defense partners, thus endogenously fueling further growth of the global DCA network.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Diplomacy, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Japan, India, Asia
  • Author: Christian Mölling, Torben Schütz, Sophia Becker
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP)
  • Abstract: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Europe is headed for a recession that will dwarf the economic downturn after the 2008 financial crisis. The impact on national defense sectors could be devastating. But as crisis and responses are still in the early stage, governments can still take measures to mitigate the effect on defense. To safeguard political and defense priorities, EU and NATO States need to act jointly and decisively.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, NATO, European Union, Deterrence, Pandemic, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Publication Date: 08-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Al Jazeera Center for Studies
  • Abstract: The most likely scenario is for the UAE to take advantage of the agreement in areas such as advanced technology, weapons acquisitions and intelligence cooperation, as well as agriculture and health while avoiding military bases and joint defence agreements.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Regional Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Peace, Trade
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, United Arab Emirates
  • Author: Vern Kakoschke
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Canadian Global Affairs Institute (CGAI)
  • Abstract: Defence procurement in Canada has had some well-known challenges in recent years. Many commentators have suggested possible strategies for fixing the defence procurement system. The identified problems include overspending on defence programs, unnecessary and undue delays in re-equipping Canada’s fleet of aircraft, ships and ground transport, and defence budgets that remain unspent. The problems also include procuring authorities experiencing a shortfall in manpower and expertise, the inability to execute on defence procurements, unjustified sole-sourcing without a proper competition, political interference in selection issues, and the list goes on. The proposed solutions often address process-related matters: establish a single agency responsible for defence procurement or perhaps a cabinet secretariat to manage the involvement of three of four government departments who are often not on the same page. To date, not much has been written or discussed in public policy forums on a critical question: How should the necessary capital assets be financed? At one extreme, Canada could simply write a cheque and pay for them up front, thereby placing the assets on Canada’s balance sheet. At the other extreme, Canada could drop the financing obligation into the laps of private-sector bidders and let them worry about the most efficient way of raising the necessary capital. A middle-ground solution could involve a public-private partnership (P3) structure, a model which seeks to balance the interests of the public and private sectors in a manner that leads to a better solution for all parties. Any public policy discussion often begins with first principles. What is the government’s policy objective? It is to procure the best available equipment, with the most benefit to the Canadian economy or local interest groups and at the lowest possible cost. All three goals must be balanced in a manner that is politically acceptable, meets budget constraints and withstands public scrutiny. In major procurements, capital can be the largest single cost of a defence procurement.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Government, Armed Forces, Finance, Public Policy
  • Political Geography: Canada, North America
  • Author: Marcus Hellyer
  • Publication Date: 08-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Australian Strategic Policy Institute
  • Abstract: The Defence Strategic Update (DSU) represents a remarkable commitment by the Australian Government to sustained growth in the defence budget. Released on 1 July after months of bad economic news caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and growing budget deficits caused by the government’s measures to mitigate the economic pain, the DSU nevertheless confirms the robust funding line presented in the 2016 Defence White Paper (2016 DWP) and extends it for a further four years. This means the defence budget will continue to grow past 2% of GDP, and indeed at a faster rate than before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. Measured from a starting point in 2019–20, the budget is planned to grow by a remarkable 87.4% over the coming decade. Why did the government make that commitment? It’s clear from the DSU that it’s very concerned about Australia’s strategic circumstances, which it assesses as having deteriorated significantly in the four years since the 2016 DWP. It states that the region is in the middle of the most consequential strategic realignment since World War II. That brings significant uncertainty and risk. The government regards robust military capabilities as essential to managing it. The DSU marks a clear break from previous high-level strategic statements in the frank way it describes those risks and the new capabilities needed to address them. It also makes several key adjustments to strategic policy settings: It redefines our immediate region to an arc from the northeastern Indian Ocean, through maritime and mainland Southeast Asia, to Papua New Guinea and the Southwest Pacific. It’s still a huge area. It prioritises the immediate region for defence planning. It introduces the concepts of ‘shape’, ‘deter’ and ‘respond’ to focus defence planning. The emphasis on shaping reinforces the importance of regional engagement and partnerships in creating a region conducive to our interests. It states that a largely defensive force won’t deter attack. Instead, ‘new capabilities are needed to hold adversaries’ forces and infrastructure at risk from a greater distance. They include longer range strike weapons, cyber measures and area-denial systems.’ It acknowledges that Australia can no longer rely on warning time, even for a conventional military attack on Australia, and so won’t have time to ‘gradually adjust’ military capabilities. While the redefinition of the immediate region might not in itself result in changes to the defence investment program—now known as the Force Structure Plan (FSP)—the other factors listed certainly will. To acquire new capabilities, the growth in the DSU’s funding model continues the pattern of the 2016 DWP. That means the capital component of the budget grows to 40% of the total budget and stays there. That’s a far higher percentage than has historically been the case. By the end of the decade, if that planned increase is achieved, the acquisition component of the budget will have grown by 148% in nominal terms from its 2019–20 start point. Despite the broader economic and budget uncertainty, this means that Defence is in the fortunate position of being able to add some significant new capabilities to its shopping list. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the FSP is that the ADF has entered the ‘age of missiles’ with a vengeance. There’s potentially $100 billion in investment over the next two decades in missiles and guided weapons. That includes the offensive systems needed to deter and defeat an adversary from a greater distance, such as hypersonic weapons. Even the Army is acquiring long-range missiles. But it also includes greatly enhanced defensive systems, such as ballistic missile defence, which is something Defence has considered for a long time but never previously committed to. That’s a clear sign that the region is getting much more dangerous. While the FSP is short on detail, the big picture it paints is pretty clear. It’s one in which the ADF continues its trajectory of steadily fielding improved capability and developing greater strategic weight. But there are risks, both in the design of the plan itself and in delivering it, that need to be managed. It must be said that Defence’s planning processes are improving along with its costing methodologies, so it’s likely that these are risks that it has considered in the development of the DSU and FSP. The first set of risks relates to the question of whether this is the right force for our deteriorating circumstances. Despite the recognition that Australia can’t rely on warning time, much of the planned force is still a long way off in the future. The first future frigate won’t be operational for 10 years and the first future submarine for 14, and subsequent vessels are to be delivered only on a two-year drumbeat. The Air Force isn’t getting additional air combat aircraft beyond its 72 F-35As until late in the decade. Most of the major new additions to the force structure are also some way off in the future. There’s a funding line that potentially provides a way forward to get Boeing’s Loyal Wingman unmanned aerial vehicle into service, but most of the big buckets of funding for unmanned and autonomous systems are still late in the 2020s or even in the 2030s. Until then, it looks like Defence is relying on improved weapons delivered from existing platforms to provide the main capability enhancement. Also, the force envisaged in the DSU and FSP is growing increasingly broad. There are many new capabilities in the plan, but virtually none are being retired or cancelled. Similarly, the range of tasks that the force is being asked to do isn’t being reduced. In fact, the DSU requires greater regional engagement as well as greater capacity for domestic disaster response—but will the force be able to do all the tasks expected of it? Related to this, our changing strategic environment seems to be pulling the force in two directions. The DSU states that we can’t match major-power adversaries and need to develop capabilities to deter them through strike, cyber and area-denial systems. This suggests a growing recognition of the need for asymmetric operational concepts and capabilities, yet the force is still largely being built around traditional, conventional capabilities such as expensive, multi-role, manned platforms of the kind Australia has relied upon to overmatch potential adversaries. Defence is also investing in an increasingly heavy conventional land force. That’s likely to be useful against some potential non-peer adversaries—but does it play a deterrent role against a major-power adversary? There’s also the question of balance between acquisition, sustainment and personnel funding. Acquisition’s share of the budget is growing rapidly. Personnel’s share is also growing but more slowly, and will decline as a percentage of the overall budget. The DSU states that the government will consider increases to Defence’s workforce next year, but those numbers are already accounted for in the DSU’s personnel funding stream, suggesting that any additional people won’t change the overall trajectory of personnel’s share of the budget. Certainly, increased capital spending is necessary, but is a 40% acquisition / 26% personnel balance feasible in the long term? There’s no point acquiring equipment you can’t crew. Then there are a set of risks that relate to the feasibility of delivery. The first, as ever, is money. The economic future of both Australia and the world is still very uncertain. If the economic impact of Covid-19 results in prolonged economic stagnation, it’s going to take sustained resolve by this and future governments to keep increasing defence funding over the decade. Should that resolve waver and a government revert to something like 2% of GDP, that would be a huge hit to the defence budget of potentially $5–10 billion per year, with a resultant cut to either existing core capabilities or the planned new ones. The government has already stated that it’s committed to Defence’s ‘megaprojects’ and that they aren’t part of any prioritisation or trade-off process, so other things will bear the brunt of any funding hit—potentially, the new asymmetric capabilities being introduced to deter a major-power adversary. Then there’s the very difficult question of the affordability of the force. The defence budget is growing substantially, but so is the list of capabilities Defence is acquiring and sustaining. The acquisition cost of military capabilities grows much faster than inflation. Since 2016, several key capabilities have grown significantly in cost (including submarines, frigates, armoured vehicles and air defence). Moreover, sustainment costs are also growing. The sustainment cost of key future capabilities is likely to be several times greater in real terms than the systems they’re replacing. One of the biggest implementation risks relates to Australian industry’s ability to scale up to deliver the force. The local share of Defence’s capital equipment spend has consistently hovered around one-third of the total. Last year, that was around $2.6 billion. As the capital budget rapidly grows over the decade, local acquisition spending will have to grow to over $7 billion per year just to maintain that one-third share. But it’s clear the government wants that share to grow. It has to, if we’re going to address the supply-chain risks currently inherent in defence capability. Getting to between 40% and 50% means the local acquisition spend will need to reach around $10 billion per year. That’s a lot of money for Australian industry to absorb and a lot of capability for it to deliver, but, if it doesn’t get there, the government won’t achieve the level of sovereign capability that it’s seeking and we’ll continue to rely on imported systems, with the attendant supply-chain risks. While the basic settings of the government’s 2016 defence industry policy statement are the right ones, it’s likely that it’s going to have to do more to develop the kind of local industrial ecosystem necessary to deliver the level of sovereign capability described in the DSU and FSP. Relying on the local assembly of foreign designs using mainly foreign high-value subsystems isn’t going to get us there. More needs to be done to generate technological innovation and advanced manufacturing here. There are only minor increases to innovation funding in the DSU, for example. The new line in the FSP to develop sovereign weapons manufacturing could be a model for a more deliberate approach to generating sovereign industrial capability. The other risk associated with industry policy is the old one of falling into the trap of preferring industrial outcomes to military capability. That risk has already been realised. Some of the hidden costs of continuous-build programs are becoming more apparent: the FSP states that the cost increase for the Future Frigate Program was caused by the government allocating ‘additional funding to enable construction of ships at a deliberate drumbeat over a longer period of time than originally planned to achieve a continuous shipbuilding program’. That is, we’re deliberately paying more to get capability later. The DSU acknowledges that we can no longer rely on warning time to be able to gradually adjust military capability, so surely now’s the time to be spending to accelerate delivery and the rate at which we ‘adjust capability’, not slow it down. If we’re willing to pay a premium to build here, let’s pay it to get more capability sooner, not later. Why are we prioritising jobs for future generations of shipbuilders over capability for current servicemen and women who may be called upon in the near future to use it? The new strategy has been written, and the government most certainly understands the urgency driving its defence policy changes. The key question is whether Defence can sufficiently internalise that urgency to implement the changes needed in how the organisation does business. The Minister for Defence, Linda Reynolds, stated on 7 August that ‘the Defence Department … has systematically for over 100 years failed to deliver on the government’s expectations of the enterprise.’ We now have a plan that calls for speed, lateral thinking, innovation and partnerships—to be implemented by an organisation that’s slow, subject to groupthink, risk averse and reluctant to reach out. Adapting Defence to the demands of our new reality is going to be challenging, to say the least.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Budget, Economy, Economic growth, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Australia, Australia/Pacific
  • Author: Fiifi Edu-Afful, Kwesi Aning, Emma Birikorang, Maya Mynster Christensen, Naila Salihu, Peter Albrecht
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Contributing personnel to UN peacekeepinghas been central to Ghana’s foreign policy andessential in shaping the country’s security sector. However, with the police and militarystill facing considerable challenges at home, and with the prospect of funding for UN peacekeeping missions being cut, Ghana’s domestic stability might be affected. RECOMMENDATIONS ■ Peacekeeping experiences should be used more forcefully to create accountability among Ghana’s security forces. ■ There should be a comprehensive review of Ghana’s approach to international peacekeeping with a view to understanding and articulating more clearly the relationship between strategic foreign-policy objectives and the provision of domestic security. ■ The UN and troop-contributing countries should make an effort to understand the implications for them both of planned cuts in peacekeeping budgets.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Democratization, Development, Non State Actors, Fragile States, Violence, Peace, Justice
  • Political Geography: Africa, Ghana
  • Author: Festus Aubyn, Kwesi Aning, Emma Birikorang, Fiifi Edu-Afful, Maya Mynster Christensen, Peter Albrecht
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The UN deploys thousands of peacekeepers in support of peace processes and state-building in countries and regions that are emerging from conflict. The example of Ghana shows that the impacts of these missions are not just felt in countries that host UN missions, but also in those that provide them with troops. Recommendations ■ The Ghanaian government should conduct a comprehensive assessment of the impacts of peacekeeping on the country’s security sector in order to inform its contributions to the UN in the future. ■ The Ghanaian army and police should continue to build on the lessons learned from deploying security personnel abroad and maintain their focus on consolidating the democratic and accountable foundations of the security sector. ■ The UN should build a stronger understanding of how countries that contribute to peace- keeping missions are affected politically, financially and in respect of their security by making these contributions.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Democratization, Development, Non State Actors, Fragile States, Violence, Peace, Police, Justice
  • Political Geography: Africa, Ghana
  • Author: Maja Touzari Greenwood
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The broad definition of the term ‘foreign fighter’ causes operational problems for risk assessments. It is therefore important for security officials to identify significant variations by classifying actors into major categories. RECOMMENDATIONS ■When assessing the risk of continued security threats from foreign fighters, it is crucial to distinguish strategically between foreign fighters who join local rebel groups and those who join globalist groups. ■Ways should be provided for foreign fighters who have joined local rebel groups to ‘opt out’ and return home after the end of fighting in order to discourage them from becoming globalist foreign fighters and to stem potential flows of foreign fighters to new theatres of conflict.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Terrorism, Fragile States
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Flemming Splidsboel Hansen
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The digital domain is an arena of opportunity for Russia in which to attempt to achieve its various objectives. However, it is also a source of threat, as it contains the possibility of attacks on Russia’s digital infrastructure, including the ability to send a relatively uninterrupted flow of information to the public. The continued development of artificial intelligence has the potential to upset the system, and Russia, which will trail the leading states within this field, is still in the early phases of formulating a response to this challenge. Recommendations ■ Remember that the digital domain in Russia is seen not only as an arena of opportunity, but also as a source of threat to the state (or rather to the regime). ■ Be prepared for Russia to think creatively to minimize the gap separating it from the world’s leaders in the development of AI. ■ Be prepared for Russia to work for an international regime restricting the use of AI for military purposes.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Power Politics, Cybersecurity
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia
  • Author: Maria-Louise Clausen
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The conflict in Yemen will not be solved by a peace agreement between the Houthis and the internationally recognized government due to the increased fragmentation of internal political and economic structures. RECOMMENDATIONS ■Denmark is well positioned to take on a bigger role in pushing for a sustainable peace agreement and a realistic transitional framework. ■Denmark should prioritize building close links with local actors. ■Denmark should support and empower local authorities and communities in parallel with an effort to build the capacity of the Yemeni state.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Non State Actors, Fragile States
  • Political Geography: Yemen, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Yang Jiang
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Despite China’s strong economic influence over Southeast Asian countries, tensions in the South China Sea have been flaring up again this year, as domestic oppositions and external interventions create dilemma for Southeast Asian governments. RECOMMENDATIONS ■ When considering joining the freedom of navigation operations in the SCS Denmark should consider that foreign interference will likely escalate Chinese military activities. ■ Denmark’s delicate relationship with the US and China must be carefully evaluated and managed. ■As a major maritime nation it is important for Denmark to secure a free sea through diplomacy and UN institutions. ■European countries have much room to enhance their contribution to regional development in Southeast Asia.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Diplomacy, International Organization, History, Power Politics, Economy, Conflict
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Luke Patey
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: A common refrain in Denmark is that China is too far away to be a threat to Danish economic, foreign and security policy interests. This is no longer the case. Danish policy-makers acknowledge that China’s rise as a global superpower presents Denmark with new challenges. However, transforming this strategic thinking into practice is no simple task. Recommendations Intensify cooperation between the Ministries of Defense and Foreign Affairs to ensure Denmark’s initiatives in foreign policy, security and economic relations with China are more closely integrated. Beware of the bilateral. Beijing’s new assertive foreign policy and US-China strategic competition require that Denmark leverage its interests increasingly through the EU, NATO and other multilateral bodies. Assess the economic vulnerabilities of Danish industries in China and diversify trade and investment across Asia’s emerging markets and developed economies in the G7/EU.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Power Politics, Bilateral Relations, Cybersecurity, Global Political Economy
  • Political Geography: China, Europe, Asia, Denmark
  • Author: Maria-Louise Clausen
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The state of Iraq is struggling to exert control over its territory. As a result, remote surveillance is being used to enhance the effectiveness of policing. However, constant surveillance may have a negative impact on emerging state–society relations. RECOMMENDATIONS ■ Invest in research focusing on the impact of surveillance on state–society relations in the Global South. ■ Work to introduce transparency in the use of surveillance in the Global South. ■ Encourage a discussion of issues of privacy and the regulation of airspace in the Global South.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Fragile States, Surveillance, Violence, Justice
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East, Global South