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  • Author: Adam Garfinkle
  • Publication Date: 04-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Foreign Policy Research Institute
  • Abstract: By now the world knows that U.S. military forces for the first time since the onset of the Syrian civil war in 2011 have attacked regime targets. Plenty of the basic facts are known about what transpired about 18 hours ago, but a few important ones are not—at least not in the public domain. For example, we have only a very general Bomb Damage Assessment (BDA) report. This matters because Tomahawk cruise missiles are very accurate if “lite” weapons. Knowing what the four dozen or so missiles hit and missed, deliberately and otherwise, could tell us a lot about why the President, presumably with Secretary of Defense James Mattis’ guidance and concurrence, chose the lesser of three options presented at what has been described as a meeting of considerable length. That, in turn, could tell us if the intention ultimately is to coerce the Russians into coercing the Syrians to stop doing monstrous things to their own people, and possibly coercing them to support a compromise political settlement to the war; or if it’s just an Eff-You gesture designed only to relieve the sudden pressure of moral unction that unexpectedly came upon our new Commander-in Chief—who seemed to lurch from coldblooded Randian to “Godtalk” invoker of the American Civil Religion in the wink of an eye. In other words, knowing more about the target set would tell us whether there is any political strategy attached to the use of force, or not. Probably not.
  • Topic: International Security, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: America, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Benjamin Tallis, Michal Šimečka
  • Publication Date: 07-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations Prague
  • Abstract: The discussion paper by Benjamin Tallis and Michal Šimečka, senior researchers at the Institute of International Relations, provides a (critical) reflection on hybrid warfare – as both a concept and a practice – in the context of collective security in Europe, and discusses the role of the institutions and policies of NATO, the EU, and Member States.
  • Topic: International Affairs, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Dr. Don M. Snider
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: Crossing the Plains on an expedition to Utah [in the 1850s], Major Charles A. May searched the wagons in an effort to reduce unnecessary baggage. When he reached the wagons of the light artillery battery, Captain Henry J. Hunt proudly pointed out the box containing the battery library. “Books,” May exclaimed. “You say books? Whoever heard of books being hauled over the Plains? What the hell are you going to do with them?” At that moment Captain Campbell of the Dragoons came up and asked permission to carry a barrel of whiskey. ”Yes, anything in reason Captain, you can take along the whiskey, but damned if these books shall go.
  • Topic: Education, Military Affairs, Ethics
  • Political Geography: United States of America
  • Author: Irene Pavesi
  • Publication Date: 05-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: This Update provides an overview of the international trade in small arms and light weapons in 2013. The first section of the Update reports on the total values and main categories of small arms1 transferred by top and major exporters and importers. This section also assesses changes in trade patterns from 2012 to 2013. The second section presents the 2016 edition of the Small Arms Trade Transparency Barometer, whose methodology and sourcing have been revised. As explained below, the Barometer now includes a new source—the Regional Report on Arms Exports, prepared by of the South Eastern and Eastern Europe Clearinghouse for the Control of Small Arms (SEESAC).
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Weapons , Arms Trade
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 07-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: The UN arms embargo on Darfur— imposed in 2004, expanded in 2005, and elaborated in 2010 with additional due-diligence requirements—has demonstrably failed to prevent the delivery of materiel to Darfur’s armed actors. A transnational supply chain based in locations as diverse as the remote Central African trading town of Am Dafok and the commercial centres of Dubai continues to furnish weapons, ammunition, and other military equipment to all sides in a 14-year-old conflict (see Map 1).
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Weapons , Arms Trade
  • Political Geography: Sudan, Darfur, Central Africa
  • Publication Date: 05-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: In September 2015 UN member states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which replaced the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (2000–15) with a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets. While reaffirming core MDG aims, such as poverty reduction and the promotion of health care and education, these SDGs and targets tackle a much broader range of factors driving underdevelopment, includ- ing violence and insecurity (UNGA, 2015a).
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, United Nations, International Security, Military Strategy, Peacekeeping, Military Affairs, Weapons , Sustainable Development Goals
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 04-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: While it was in power the Qaddafi regime tightly regulated the Libyan domestic arms trade, and local black market sales were virtually unheard of. Supplies were constrained as well—international sanctions prohibited the legal importation of arms into Libya from 1992 to 2003.1 Even when sanctions were lifted in September 2003 and international arms exports began to flow again (supplementing the Qaddafi regime’s already massive government arsenal), the domestic arms trade was stagnant (Jenzen-Jones and McCollum, forthcoming). The Libyan revolution deposed the Qaddafi regime in 2011 and with it brought to an end the Libyan state’s regulation of the arms trade. Military stockpiles were raided, and small arms and light weapons made their way into the hands of non-state armed groups and private sellers.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, International Security, Military Strategy, Non State Actors, Sanctions, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Libya
  • Publication Date: 03-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: This iconic line from the 2005 film Lord of War conveys widely held assumptions about international arms traffickers: that they are ambitious, well-connected, globe-trotting entre-preneurs who single-handedly arm criminals and militias throughout the world. The film’s fictional protagonist, Yuri Orlov, is based on five actual arms dealers, including Russian businessman Viktor Bout, whose vast global network of shell companies and unsavoury clients earned him the moniker ‘the Merchant of Death’ (Gilchrist, 2005). The composite image of Bout and his peers has become the archetypal arms trafficker, the image that comes to mind whenever the illicit arms trade is discussed. Yet most arms traffickers bear little resemblance to that image.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, International Security, Military Strategy, Mass Media, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: N.R. Jenzen-Jones
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: Emergent ammunition technologies are likely to prove key in future firearms designs, while many also apply to legacy weapons. Emergent cartridge case technologies, the rise of the ‘general-purpose’ calibre, and other nascent technologies will affect the way in which firearms are designed, produced, managed in service, tactically employed, maintained, and sustained. Many of these technologies are focused on reducing the logistics burden on armed forces and security agencies, and on reducing the carrying load of the individual combatant. While these technologies also apply to medium- and large-calibre ammunition, this Working Paper restricts its focus to small-calibre ammunition—cartridges of up to 14.5 × 114 mm in calibre—which are commonly fired from firearms referred to as small arms and light weapons.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Science and Technology, Military Strategy, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Small Arms Survey
  • Abstract: Since the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations released its seminal report in 2000, UN missions have grown considerably in size and com- plexity. As of November 2015, more than 100,000 uniformed personnel were serving in UN peace operations—a three-fold increase since 2000 and a 50 per cent rise since 2005 (UNDPKO, 2005; UNGA and UNSC, 2015b, p. 20). These troops, military observers, and police officers increasingly operate in large, underdeveloped countries, alongside violent armed groups that show little interest in political compromise and have few compunctions about attacking UN forces (UNGA and UNSC, 2015b, pp. 21–22). Succeeding in these environments requires that peacekeepers be well trained and well armed.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Politics, United Nations, International Security, Military Strategy, Peacekeeping, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus