US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

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06.01.2020

"The United States Bet Guaidó Could Transform Venezuela. It Hasn’t Happened."

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/06/world/americas/guaido-venezuela-trump.html

Die Hoffnungen der US-Regierung auf eine schnelle Machtübernahme von Juan Guaidó in Venezuela haben sich der New York Times zufolge mittlerweile zerschlagen. Ein Jahr nach dem von Washington unterstützten Versuch eines Machtwechsels habe die US-Regierung nur wenig vorzuweisen. "Mr. Guaidó is so removed from power that, this weekend, he was barred from even entering the legislature, where he was seeking re-election as the body’s leader. In one dramatic moment, captured on video, a desperate Mr. Guaidó tried to scale the spiked metal fence that surrounds the assembly building. But government forces pulled him down while inside, Mr. Maduro’s supporters elected one of their allies to lead the legislature — a move intended to deprive Mr. Guaidó of the position that gives him legal cover to stake a rival claim on the presidency. (..) 'It’s impossible to overstate what a huge blow all of this is to U.S. strategy in Venezuela,' said Geoff Ramsey, director of the Venezuela program at the Washington Office on Latin America."

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03.01.2020

"A Shocked Iraq Reconsiders Its Relationship With the U.S."

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/03/world/middleeast/us-iraq.html

Nach dem Attentat auf General Soleimani sei die militärische und sicherheitspolitische Allianz zwischen den USA und dem Irak mehr denn je gefährdet, berichtet die New York Times. "The question was already coursing through the halls of power in Baghdad, even as the Trump administration said Friday that it was rushing new troops to the region in response to the crisis. The airstrike on General Suleimani 'was a clear breach of the terms of the American forces’ presence,' [prime minister Adel Abdul Mahdi] said. He said that Parliament would meet in the coming days to consider 'appropriate measures to preserve the dignity of Iraq and its security and sovereignty,' including whether to ask the Americans to leave. (…) 'I think in his death he put the final nail in the coffin of the U.S. military presence in Iraq,' said Mohammad Shabani, a doctoral researcher at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London who focuses on Iran-Iraq relations. 'If Iran can erase the U.S. military presence in Iraq and all it has to do is give up five Iranian military men, would Iran do it? I think the answer is yes.' The United States has nearly 5,000 troops in Iraq on a handful of bases."

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28.12.2019

"'The Pendulum Has Swung Back': Latin America’s Corruption Fight Stalls"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/28/world/americas/latin-america-corruption.html

Der Kampf gegen die weit verbreitete Korruption in lateinamerikanischen Ländern wie Brasilien sei heute weitgehend zum Erliegen gekommen, stellen Ernesto Londoño und Letícia Casado in ihrer ausführlichen Reportage ernüchtert fest. "As discredited figures in business and politics mount comebacks, many of those who led the crusade against graft face retaliation. (…) All this has helped fuel widespread anger and distrust of the political establishment. Millions of Latin Americans have voted out incumbents and over the past few months have poured into the streets in enormous protests. (…) Brazil’s backsliding on corruption may be the most dramatic and consequential in the region, given how much prosecutors accomplished in a few years."

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26.12.2019

"With U.S. Help No Longer Assured, Saudis Try a New Strategy: Talks"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/26/world/middleeast/saudi-iran-qatar-talks.html

Angesichts zunehmender Zweifel an der amerikanischen Bereitschaft, die Sicherheit Saudi-Arabiens zu garantieren, habe das Königshaus damit begonnen, seine Konflikte mit Nachbarstaaten in der Region auf diplomatische Weise anzugehen, berichten Declan Walsh und Ben Hubbard. "The prince, Mohammed bin Salman, has stepped up direct talks with the rebels he has been fighting in Yemen for over four years, leading to a decline in attacks by both sides. He has made gestures to ease, if not end, the stifling blockade he and his allies imposed on his tiny, wealthy neighbor, Qatar. He has even engaged in indirect talks with the kingdom’s archnemesis, Iran, to try to dampen the shadow war raging across the region. Fueling the shift from confrontation to negotiation, analysts say, is the sobering realization that a decades-old cornerstone of American policy in the Middle East — the understanding that the United States would defend the Saudi oil industry from foreign attacks — can no longer be taken for granted."

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21.12.2019

"Total Surveillance Is Not What America Signed Up For"

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/12/21/opinion/location-data-privacy-rights.html

Die New York Times warnt in diesem Leitartikel vor den Gefahren einer unbegrenzten Sammlung und kommerziellen Auswertung von digitalen Nutzerdaten durch private Unternehmen. "If the government ordered Americans to continuously provide such precise, real-time information about themselves, there would be a revolt. Members of Congress would trample one another to be first in front of the cable news cameras to quote the founders and insist on our rights to be free of such pervasive surveillance. Yet, as a society, without ever focusing on this profound choice, we’ve reached a tacit consensus to hand this data over voluntarily, even though we don’t really know who’s getting it or what they’re doing with it. As the close of 2019 approaches, everybody is searching for the meaning of the decade. Here’s a thought: This is the decade — the period since the founding of the App Store, in 2008 — in which we were brainwashed into surveilling ourselves."

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20.12.2019

"You Should Be Freaking Out About Privacy"

https://www.nytimes.com/video/opinion/100000006794185/privacy-surveillance-video.html

Die New York Times erklärt in diesem Video, welch umfassenden Einblick Tech-Unternehmen bereits heute in die Privatsphäre ihrer Nutzer haben. Viele Bürger unterschätzten das Ausmaß ihrer digitalen Überwachung immer noch. "Nothing to hide, nothing to fear? Think again."

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11.12.2019

"We Just Got a Rare Look at National Security Surveillance. It Was Ugly."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/11/us/politics/fisa-surveillance-fbi.html

In den USA werde der neue Untersuchungsbericht des Generalinspekteurs des US-Justizministeriums, Michael Horowitz, über die FBI-Ermittlungen zu angeblichen Beziehungen des Wahlkampfteams Donald Trumps zu Russland entlang bekannter Parteilinien diskutiert, stellt Charlie Savage fest. Der Bericht gewähre allerdings einen verstörenden Einblick in staatliche Überwachungsmöglichkeiten, der über parteipolitische Positionen hinausgehe. "The Justice Department’s independent inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, and his team uncovered a staggeringly dysfunctional and error-ridden process in how the F.B.I. went about obtaining and renewing court permission under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, to wiretap Carter Page, a former Trump campaign adviser. 'The litany of problems with the Carter Page surveillance applications demonstrates how the secrecy shrouding the government’s one-sided FISA approval process breeds abuse,' said Hina Shamsi, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s National Security Project. 'The concerns the inspector general identifies apply to intrusive investigations of others, including especially Muslims, and far better safeguards against abuse are necessary.'"

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04.12.2019

"What the C.I.A.’s Torture Program Looked Like to the Tortured"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/04/us/politics/cia-torture-drawings.html

Die New York Times veröffentlicht Zeichnungen von Abu Zubaydah, der vier Jahre in Geheimgefängnissen der CIA verhört und gefoltert wurde. Carol Rosenberg schreibt, dass die Skizzen einen Eindruck von den Foltermethoden vermitteln, der über die klinische Sprache offizieller Untersuchungsberichte hinausgehe. "Published here for the first time, they are gritty and highly personal depictions that put flesh, bones and emotion on what until now had sometimes been portrayed in popular culture in sanitized or inaccurate ways: the so-called enhanced interrogations techniques used by the United States in secret overseas prisons during a feverish pursuit of Al Qaeda after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. In each illustration, Mr. Zubaydah — the first person to be subject to the interrogation program approved by President George W. Bush’s administration — portrays the particular techniques as he says they were used on him at a C.I.A. black site in Thailand in August 2002. A spotlight on the people reshaping our politics. A conversation with voters across the country. And a guiding hand through the endless news cycle, telling you what you really need to know. They demonstrate how, more than a decade after the Obama administration outlawed the program — and then went on to partly declassify a Senate study that found the C.I.A. lied about both its effectiveness and its brutality — the final chapter of the black sites has yet to be written."

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28.11.2019

"Time Is Running Out for Trump’s North Korean Diplomacy, Analysts Say"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/28/world/asia/north-korea-trump-nuclear-talks-deadline.html

Das Zeitfenster für einen Durchbruch in den stockenden Verhandlungen zwischen den USA und Nordkorea beginne sich nach Ansicht einiger Experten zu schließen, berichtet Choe Sang-Hun. Nordkorea habe den USA bis zum Ende des Jahres Zeit für neue Vorschläge gegeben, was von US-Diplomaten allerdings als "Bluff" betrachtet werde. "The looming deadline — which North Korea has issued repeated warnings about — carries the implicit threat that the country could return to its alarming behavior of the past by ending its self-imposed moratorium on nuclear tests and launching long-range missiles capable of hitting American cities. On Thursday, it launched two short-range rockets, its 13th rocket or missile test since May. (…) Some analysts say the deadline shows how badly Mr. Kim wants a deal so that he can finally deliver on a promise to his people to lift sanctions and rebuild the country’s ailing economy. North Korea’s increasingly urgent statements in recent weeks are designed to pressure Washington to return to the negotiating table with a more flexible proposal, they say."

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25.11.2019

"U.S. Resumes Large-Scale Operations Against ISIS in Northern Syria"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/25/us/politics/us-syria-isis.html

Fast zwei Monate nach dem Abzug von US-Truppen aus Nordsyrien habe das US-Militär seine enge Kooperation mit kurdischen Milizen bei der Bekämpfung des "Islamischen Staates" wieder fortgesetzt, berichtet Eric Schmitt. "The new operations show that despite Mr. Trump’s earlier demand for a complete withdrawal of all American forces from Syria, the president still has some 500 troops in the country, many of them in combat, for the foreseeable future. (…) American commandos and their Syrian Kurdish partners conducted some low-level missions after the withdrawal order. But General McKenzie said that since Americans and Kurds had regrouped in a much smaller area east of the Euphrates River and into Syria’s far northeast along the border with Iraq, they could resume bigger missions against ISIS. This past Friday, American soldiers and hundreds of Syrian Kurdish fighters — the same local allies the Trump administration abandoned to fend for themselves against the Turkish advance last month — reunited to conduct what the Pentagon said was a large-scale mission to kill and capture ISIS fighters in Deir al-Zour province, about 120 miles south of the Turkish border."

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23.11.2019

"Merkel and Macron Publicly Clash Over NATO"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/23/world/europe/nato-france-germany.html?searchResultPosition=1

Bei einem Treffen in Brüssel ist es Steven Erlanger zufolge zu einem ungewöhnlich offenen Wortwechsel zwischen Präsident Macron und Bundeskanzlerin Merkel gekommen. "At a dinner to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, [Merkel] huddled with President Emmanuel Macron of France, who had just given an interview in which he cited the 'brain death' of NATO and wondered whether its commitment to collective defense still held. (…) 'I understand your desire for disruptive politics,' Ms. Merkel said. 'But I’m tired of picking up the pieces. Over and over, I have to glue together the cups you have broken so that we can then sit down and have a cup of tea together.' Mr. Macron defended himself, saying that he could not simply go to a NATO meeting in London in early December and pretend that the United States and Turkey had behaved in the collective interest in Syria. (…) The conversation underscores the serious strains in the Franco-German relationship and the tensions surrounding the abbreviated NATO meeting on the outskirts of London, which was carefully downgraded from a summit to a gathering of leaders to celebrate the alliance’s 70th anniversary."

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17.11.2019

"Turkey’s Deportations Force Europe to Face Its ISIS Militants"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/17/world/europe/turkey-isis-fighters-europe.html

Mit seiner Entscheidung, IS-Anhänger in ihre Heimatländer abzuschieben, habe der türkische Präsident Erdogan die Europäer gezwungen, sich diesem Problem endlich zu stellen, schreiben Norimitsu Onishi und Elian Peltier. "The sudden problem for Europe is a long-tail consequence of President Trump’s precipitous decision last month to withdraw American forces from northern Syria, which cleared the way for Turkey to take control of territory as well as many of the Islamic State members who had been held there in Kurdish-run prisons or detention camps. The issue is further complicated by the fact that nearly two-thirds of the Western European detainees, or about 700, are children, many of whom have lost one parent, if not both. (…) The deteriorating situation in northern Syria, some experts say, further increases the need for an orderly repatriation to Europe. Left in Syria, more detainees could fall into the hands of Turkish forces or the Syrian government, which could use them as bargaining chips with the West. Others could run away and try to regroup, or be taken back by Islamic State sleeper cells, as is feared in the case of some women who recently escaped from a camp in the region."

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16.11.2019

"'Absolutely No Mercy': Leaked Files Expose How China Organized Mass Detentions of Muslims"

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/11/16/world/asia/china-xinjiang-documents.html

Die New York Times ist an mehr als 400 geheime Dokumente der chinesischen Regierung gelangt, die einen Eindruck vom Unterdrückungssystem gegen muslimische Minderheiten vermitteln. "They provide an unprecedented inside view of the continuing clampdown in Xinjiang, in which the authorities have corralled as many as a million ethnic Uighurs, Kazakhs and others into internment camps and prisons over the past three years. The party has rejected international criticism of the camps and described them as job-training centers that use mild methods to fight Islamic extremism. But the documents confirm the coercive nature of the crackdown in the words and orders of the very officials who conceived and orchestrated it."

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15.11.2019

"Ethnic Rifts in Bolivia Burst Into View With Fall of Evo Morales"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/15/world/americas/morales-bolivia-Indigenous-racism.html

Der erzwungene Rücktritt von Präsident Morales habe in Bolivien ethnische Gräben offengelegt, berichten Anatoly Kurmanaev und Clifford Krauss. Indigene Bolivianer fürchten demnach den Verlust ihres hart erkämpften politischen Einflusses. "Mr. Morales, a champion of the Indigenous, has now been replaced by an acting president of European descent, and resentments have surfaced. Police officers have ripped the Indigenous insignia off their uniforms. Protesters have burned the Indigenous flag. And the acting president, who posted tweets many consider racist, initially appointed a cabinet without a single Indigenous member. 'We feel threatened,' said Juan Acume, a farmer from the Quechua, an Indigenous group, near a protest barricade of earth mounds and tree trunks across Bolivia’s main highway on Wednesday night. 'They don’t represent us; they reject us, the Indigenous.'"

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12.11.2019

"Bolivia Crisis Shows the Blurry Line Between Coup and Uprising"

http://https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/12/world/americas/bolivia-evo-morales-coup.html

Die kontroversen Umstände des Rücktritts des bolivianischen Präsidenten Morales haben eine Debatte darüber ausgelöst, ob es sich bei dem Umsturz um einen "Putsch" oder um eine "Revolte" handle. Nach Ansicht von Max Fisher lässt sich diese Frage nicht so einfach beantworten, da beide Seiten gute Argumente hätten. "(…) the coexistence of the two interpretations hints at an important truth, scholars say: The line between coups and revolts can be blurry, even nonexistent. Often, they are one and the same: mass public uprisings alongside military defections that compel the resignation or removal of a country’s leader. But the overlapping terms often carry moral connotations that could not be more divergent: Coups, in today’s understanding, are to be condemned; revolts are to be championed. 'People who get hung up on whether or not something is a coup or a revolution are missing the point,' said Naunihal Singh, a leading scholar of power transitions and coups. 'The question is what happens next.' That has opened space for a kind of linguistic warfare, in which a political takeover can be portrayed as legitimate by labeling it a revolt, or illegitimate by terming it a coup."

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04.11.2019

"Iraqis Rise Against a Reviled Occupier: Iran"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/04/world/middleeast/iraq-protests-iran.html

In Irak stoße die Einmischung des Irans in irakische Angelegenheiten immer stärker auf öffentlichen Widerwillen, berichtet Alissa J. Rubin. Die andauernden Massenproteste gegen die Regierung richteten sich auch gegen Teherans Einfluss in Bagdad. "While the current leaders of the Iraqi government cower inside the Green Zone, where officials running the American occupation once sheltered, the protesters outside direct their anger against the Islamic Republic of Iran, which they now see as having too much influence. 'Free, free Iraq,' they shout, 'Iran get out, get out.' (…) 'The revolution is not anti-American, it is anti-Iran, it is anti-religion — anti-political religion, not religion as such,' said Saad Eskander, the former head of the Iraqi National Archives. The protesters, he said, were fed up with corruption and the Shiite militias, some of which have evolved into mafias running extortion rackets. But more than that, he added, this is 'a revolution with a social dimension. In Iraq, patriotism was always political, now it has a social justice component.' While Iran is the immediate target of the protesters’ wrath, the fight is larger than that. It is a struggle between younger Iraqis and an older, more cautious generation, between a political elite and a rising cohort that rejects their leadership."

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01.11.2019

"Trump’s Opposition to ‘Endless Wars’ Appeals to Those Who Fought Them"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/01/us/politics/veterans-trump-iraq-afghanistan.html

US-Präsident Trump hat den Rückzug von US-Truppen aus Syrien mit seiner grundsätzlichen Ablehnung der "endlosen Kriege" der USA begründet. Unter US-Veteranen stößt diese Position Jennifer Steinhauer zufolge auf große Zustimmung. "Nearly two decades after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, polls show that a majority of all veterans have grown disenchanted with the continuing wars, even if the national security elite in both parties continue to press for an American military presence in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. The view is in stark contrast to widespread support for the wars across the military and veterans community — and the general population — when President George W. Bush first sent American troops to Afghanistan and then Iraq. The shifting attitudes of so many who served in the wars help explain why Mr. Trump has support among veterans as he brings troops home and has resisted military action against other nations. There is a slow but steadily increasing alliance of those on the left and the right on Capitol Hill to curb what Mr. Trump calls 'endless wars.'"

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30.10.2019

"Hundreds of U.S. Troops Leaving, and Also Arriving in, Syria"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/30/world/middleeast/us-troops-syria-trump.html

Am Ende der aktuellen US-Truppenbewegungen in Syrien könnten fast genauso viele Soldaten vor Ort aktiv sein wie vor dem von Präsident Trump angeordneten Truppenabzug, stellen Eric Schmitt und Helene Cooper fest. "Every day in northeastern Syria, waves of American troops are pulling out under President Trump’s order this month that paved the way for a Turkish offensive that included assaults on the Pentagon’s allies, the Syrian Kurds. And at the same time, a separate wave of American troops from the opposite direction is pouring back in. In fact, once the comings and goings are done, the total number of United States forces in Syria is expected to be about 900 — close to the 1,000 troops on the ground when Mr. Trump ordered the withdrawal of American forces from the country. 'It’s damage control,' said Alexander Bick, a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, who oversaw Syria issues at the National Security Council in the Obama administration."

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28.10.2019

"How to Really Make the Death of ISIS’s Leader Bigger Than Bin Laden’s"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/28/opinion/isis-baghdadi-bin-laden.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtyp
e=Homepage

Nach dem Tod des IS-Anführers al-Baghdadi empfiehlt Hassan Hassan, Co-Autor des Buches "ISIS: Inside the Army of Terror", die weitere Präsenz von US-Truppen in Syrien, um in einer kritischen Phase den Druck auf die Terrormiliz aufrechtzuerhalten. "That the Islamic State can easily survive the loss of its top leader is not as straightforward a proposition as seems to be widely believed. (…) Mr. al-Baghdadi’s oversight was vital in guiding ISIS’s current transition from governing body to effective underground organization. Captured commanders have testified to Iraqi and Kurdish troops about his involvement in day-to-day affairs, and the meetings he held with different regional heads. (…) Pressure against ISIS now may not end the group — its rigid and hard-line ideology thrives amid the conflict and authoritarianism in the region. But it can change the group in the same way Al Qaeda changed after 9/11, to become locally focused and, ultimately, weaker. Since losing ground in Syria and Iraq, ISIS had already started focusing on building its regional affiliates rather than conducting attacks in the West. That trend could continue if pressure against it persists — pressure, say, in the form of continuing American presence in Syria to train local forces and detect any resurgent Islamic State activities until a robust political settlement to resolve the Syrian conflict can be reached. The alternative is unthinkable."

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24.10.2019

"Will Democrats Become Born-Again Neocons?"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/24/opinion/democrats-neocons.html

Bret Stephens meint, dass die Außenpolitik von US-Präsident Trump wie zuletzt in Syrien zu "Desastern" geführt habe. Unter den Demokraten gebe es deshalb immer mehr "wiedergeborene Neokonservative", die einen "geopolitischen Rückzug" der USA ablehnen. Allerdings sei offen, ob es sich tatsächlich um einen Politikwechsel oder um eine reflexhafte Ablehnung Trumps handle. "All of this raises the possibility — faintly — that while Trump steers the American right toward a foreign policy of retreat, appeasement, and non-intervention, liberals might rediscover their Trumanesque faith in the necessity of Pax Americana. The world quickly becomes unsafe in the absence of U.S. power and will. Ceding ground to dictators is destined to work about as well today as it did when it was last tried in the 1930s. I won’t get my hopes up yet. Trump’s foreign policy ought to be a lesson to all Americans about what a post-American world would look like."

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23.10.2019

"From Chile to Lebanon, Protests Flare Over Wallet Issues"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/23/world/middleeast/global-protests.html

In vielen Ländern breite sich eine wachsende Unzufriedenheit mit politischen, wirtschaftlichen und sozialen Zuständen aus, stellen Declan Walsh und Max Fisher fest. Im Westen führe dies zu populistischen Wahlerfolgen, in anderen Ländern zu Massenprotesten gegen die Regierung. "(…) as protest movements grow, their success rates are plunging. Only 20 years ago, 70 percent of protests demanding systemic political change achieved it — a figure that had been growing steadily since the 1950s, according to a study by Erica Chenoweth, a Harvard University political scientist. In the mid-2000s, that trend reversed. Success rates now stand at 30 percent, the study said, a decline that Professor Chenoweth called staggering. These two trends are closely linked. As protests become more frequent but likelier to flounder, they stretch on and on, becoming more contentious, more visible — and more apt to return to the streets when their demands go unmet. (…) If protests are quicker to stir and more widespread than in earlier decades, they are also more fragile. The painstaking mobilization that once was a feature of grass-roots movements was slow but durable. Protests that organize on social media can rise faster, but collapse just as quickly. Authoritarian governments have also learned to co-opt social media, using it to disseminate propaganda, rally sympathizers or simply spread confusion, Professor Chenoweth said. And even where there is a spasm of protest, it takes a lot more for it to snowball into a full opposition movement."

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17.10.2019

"Why the Protests in Hong Kong May Have No End in Sight"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/17/world/asia/hong-kong-protests.html

Bei der Lösung der anhaltenden politischen Krise in Hongkong wird es Keith Bradsher zufolge vor allem auf die lokalen Verbündeten Pekings ankommen. Die Unstimmigkeiten unter diesen Gruppen könnten allerdings dafür sorgen, dass der Konflikt noch lange weiterschwelen wird. "Some of Beijing’s local allies are populists who want to break up local monopolies, seize private land and build public housing. Some are tycoons who are happy to support the local government and Beijing as long as no one touches their businesses. The differences within the pro-Beijing camp are even deeper on the protesters’ biggest demand, for greater democracy. A moderate camp led by the city’s embattled chief executive, Carrie Lam, would like to see gradual progress toward freer elections, at least within Beijing’s predefined limits. The city’s hard-liners loathe the idea, and are deeply frustrated by what they perceive as Mrs. Lam’s desire to negotiate with democracy advocates and her wariness of ordering a harsher police crackdown."

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08.10.2019

"Top Secret Russian Unit Seeks to Destabilize Europe, Security Officials Say"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/08/world/europe/unit-29155-russia-gru.html

Westliche Geheimdienst-Experten sind zu der Überzeugung gelangt, dass eine geheime Elite-Abteilung des russischen Militärgeheimdienstes GRU eine koordinierte Kampagne zur Destabilisierung Europas betreibe. "The group, known as Unit 29155, has operated for at least a decade, yet Western officials only recently discovered it. Intelligence officials in four Western countries say it is unclear how often the unit is mobilized and warn that it is impossible to know when and where its operatives will strike. The purpose of Unit 29155, which has not been previously reported, underscores the degree to which the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, is actively fighting the West with his brand of so-called hybrid warfare — a blend of propaganda, hacking attacks and disinformation — as well as open military confrontation. (...) European security officials are also perplexed by the apparent sloppiness in the unit’s operations. Mr. Skripal survived the assassination attempt, as did Mr. Gebrev, the Bulgarian arms dealer. The attempted coup in Montenegro drew an enormous amount of attention, but ultimately failed. A year later, Montenegro joined NATO. It is possible, security officials say, that they have yet to discover other, more successful operations. It is difficult to know if the messiness has bothered the Kremlin. Perhaps, intelligence experts say, it is part of the point."

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04.10.2019

"Free Speech Is Killing Us"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/04/opinion/sunday/free-speech-social-media-violence.html

Nach Ansicht von Andrew Marantz muss Meinungsfreiheit heute als Bedrohung betrachtet werden, da Äußerungen im Internet nicht selten zu Gewalttaten in der realen Welt führten. "I am not calling for repealing the First Amendment, or even for banning speech I find offensive on private platforms. What I’m arguing against is paralysis. We can protect unpopular speech from government interference while also admitting that unchecked speech can expose us to real risks. And we can take steps to mitigate those risks. The Constitution prevents the government from using sticks, but it says nothing about carrots. Congress could fund, for example, a national campaign to promote news literacy, or it could invest heavily in library programming. It could build a robust public media in the mold of the BBC. (...) Or the private sector could pitch in on its own. Tomorrow, by fiat, Mark Zuckerberg could make Facebook slightly less profitable and enormously less immoral: He could hire thousands more content moderators and pay them fairly."

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04.10.2019

"Saudi Arabia and Iran Make Quiet Openings to Head Off War"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/04/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-iran-talks.html

Die New York Times berichtet über Bemühungen Saudi-Arabiens und Irans, ihren zuletzt gefährlich eskalierten Konflikt diplomatisch zu entschärfen. "After years of growing hostility and competition for influence, Saudi Arabia and Iran have taken steps toward indirect talks to try to reduce the tensions that have brought the Middle East to the brink of war, according to officials from several countries involved in the efforts. Even the prospect of such talks represents a remarkable turnaround, coming only a few weeks after a coordinated attack on Saudi oil installations led to bellicose threats in the Persian Gulf. Any reconciliation between Saudi Arabia and Iran could have far-reaching consequences for conflicts across the region."

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30.09.2019

"Gems, Warlords and Mercenaries: Russia’s Playbook in Central African Republic"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/30/world/russia-diamonds-africa-prigozhin.html

Dionne Searcey schreibt, dass Russland mit seinem auffälligen Engagement in der Zentralafrikanischen Republik nicht nur politische, sondern auch handfeste ökonomische Ziele verfolge. "Russian mercenaries have fanned out across the nation to train local soldiers. A former Russian spy has been installed by the Central African president as his top security adviser. Russians shuttled warlords to peace talks with the government, helping lead to a deal with more than a dozen armed groups to stop fighting. (...) The Central African government has welcomed the Russians, betting that stability will enable it to sell more diamonds legally and use the money to rebuild the nation. (...) But Russia’s help comes at a cost. Its representatives have struck deals with the government to mine diamonds where the trade is legal — one of many signs that Russia’s push into the country is closely tied to the profits it can reap."

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27.09.2019

"'The New Berlin Wall': Why Ukraine Is Central to the Scandal"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/27/world/europe/ukraine-zelensky-cold-war-trump-giuliani.html

Andrew Higgins erinnert die aktuelle geopolitische Bedeutung der Ukraine an das Klima in Städten wie Berlin oder Wien während des Kalten Kriegs. Dazu passe die Verwicklung zahlreicher US-Persönlichkeiten in politische und Korruptionsskandale vor Ort. "Caught between the clashing geopolitical ambitions of Russia and the West, Ukraine has for years had to balance competing outside interests and worked hard to cultivate all sides, and also rival groups on the same side — no matter how incompatible their agendas — with offers of money, favors and prospects for career advancement. Paul Manafort, Rudolph Giuliani, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s son Hunter and Hillary Clinton have all, at one time or another, found their way there, escorted by Ukrainian guides with deep pockets and a keen sense of how to appeal to their vanities, ambitions and greed. (...) Ukraine’s allure for American carpetbaggers, political consultants and adventurers has put it at the center of not just one but now two presidential elections in the United States and a host of second-tier scandals. (...) Yevhen Hlibovytskyi, a lecturer in philosophy at the Ukrainian Catholic University, said Ukraine’s pivotal position in geopolitical struggles had made Kiev, a picturesque capital of cobblestoned streets on the Dnepr River, into the 21st century’s equivalent of Cold War dens of intrigue like Vienna and Berlin, or Casablanca during World War II."

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26.09.2019

"The Berlin Police Are Confident the Killer Is in Jail. They Just Don’t Know His Name."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/26/world/europe/berlin-murder-russia.html

In den Ermittlungen der Berliner Behörden zum Mord an einem Tschetschenen im Tiergarten am 23. August gebe es einen Tatverdächtigen, dem Verbindungen zum russischen Staat unterstellt werden, berichtet auch die New York Times. "Days after the Aug. 23 killing, investigators received an email from an anonymous sender. It suggested that the suspect was a hit man who had been released from prison by the Russian authorities in order to carry out the assassination in Berlin. (...) For Germany, the case has rekindled fears of Russian assassins roving freely around Europe, just over a year after Moscow was blamed for the poisoning in Britain of a former Russian spy, Sergei V. Skripal. The geopolitical stakes also are high, given Germany’s tumultuous but important diplomatic and economic relationship with Russia. The Kremlin has denied any connection to the Berlin suspect, but it has also ignored German investigators’ requests for help. (...) Investigators are wary of being lured into a trap, possibly as part of an effort by Russia or others to muddy the waters with disinformation."

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25.09.2019

"Why a Trump Impeachment Should Terrify You"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/25/opinion/trump-impeachment-.html

Frank Bruni meint, dass Donald Trump eine Amtsenthebung durchaus verdienen würde. Die möglichen politischen Folgen des nun anlaufenden Prozesses bereiten allerdings auch ihm Sorge: "(...) while an impeachment’s impact on November 2020 is unknowable, its effect on us as a nation is almost certain. A dangerously polarized and often viciously partisan country would grow more so, with people on opposing sides hunkering down deeper in their camps and clinging harder to their chosen narratives as the president — concerned only with himself — ratcheted up his insistence that truth itself was subjective and up for grabs. That’s not a reason to blink, but it’s a reality to brace for. At a juncture when we so desperately need to rediscover common ground, we’d be widening the fault lines. (...) Impeachment should terrify you because it would mean a continued, relentless, overwhelming focus on Trump’s lawlessness, antics, fictions and inane tweets."

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