US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

War on the Rocks


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"The Drone Beats of War: The U.S. Vulnerability to Targeted Killings"

David W. Barno und Nora Bensahel erwarten nach der gezielten Tötung von General Soleimani, dass US-Offizielle bald selbst zum Ziel derartiger Angriffe werden könnten. "As advanced technologies inexorably became cheaper and more widely available, the U.S. monopoly on these capabilities started to erode. By 2016, for example, eight countries other than the United States had conducted armed drone attacks, including Iran, Pakistan, and Nigeria. By 2019, Russia and two other countries joined this exclusive club. (…) The Soleimani strike has given potential U.S. adversaries every reason to accelerate their efforts to develop similar capabilities. Moreover, these same adversaries can now justify their own future targeted killings by invoking this U.S. precedent. Sooner or later — and probably sooner — senior U.S. civilian and military leaders will become vulnerable to the same types of decapitation strikes that the United States has inflicted on others."

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"There Was No 'Secret War on the Truth' in Afghanistan"

Nach Ansicht des Sicherheitsexperten Jon Schroden erwecken die "Afghanistan Papers" der Washington Post den falschen Eindruck, dass es eine geheime Regierungskampagne zur Unterdrückung von Informationen über den tatsächlichen Stand der Dinge in Afghanistan gegeben habe. "The story the Post is telling is neither wholly true, nor supported by the documents it published. Instead, the Post’s reporting puts sensationalist spin on information that was not classified, has already been described in publicly-available reports, only covers a fraction of the 18 years of the war, and falls far short of convincingly demonstrating a campaign of deliberate lies and deceit. (…) My personal observations during the roughly 12 years I have been working on assessments of the Afghanistan war are that U.S. officials have not generally engaged in a deliberate campaign of lies and deceit of the American public when it came to progress in the war. Rather, what I’ve observed is shifting (and often unclear or arguably unachievable) strategic and policy objectives combined with aggressive optimism and an overwhelming 'can do' attitude on the part of U.S. government officials — especially within the military given its rigid hierarchy, and culture of following orders and vertical appeasement".

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"How to Stabilize Ukraine Long Term? Securitize Well-Being"

Nach Ansicht der Sozialwissenschaftler Cynthia Buckley, Ralph Clem und Erik Herron sollte die US-Regierung die Ukraine künftig weniger durch Militärhilfe als durch zivile Programme zur Verbesserung des allgemeinen Lebensstandards und des gesellschaftlichen Engagements unterstützen. "Why? Because when people have confidence that their government is delivering basic services such as health care and education, and also ensuring that elections take place in a free and fair manner, they are more supportive of the state and more resistant to attempts to undermine the government’s legitimacy. These are components of what social scientists refer to as state capacity. In our view, state capacity — the means by which human security issues and challenges are addressed — should properly be seen as part of the state’s overall security architecture; that is, it can and should be securitized. (…) The most recent Gallup World Poll showed that only 9 percent of Ukrainian citizens had confidence in their national government, the lowest of any country globally by far. A large part of that dismal number owes, of course, to the debilitating effects of corruption, misgovernance, and the hybrid and kinetic destabilization efforts of neighboring Russia. The Ukrainian state has failed to provide adequately for its citizens. Absent major enhancements in state capacity, Ukrainians will continue to lack confidence in their government."

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"Are We Entering a New Era of Far-Right Terrorism?"

Bruce Hoffman und Jacob Ware vom Council on Foreign Relations halten die rechtsextremen Terroranschläge der jüngeren Zeit in den USA für den möglichen Beginn einer Ära. Sie verweisen auf drei Faktoren, die zu der neuen Bedrohung beitragen: "Beyond ongoing violence, the rising far right should concern law enforcement and government for three reasons: its relationship with members of the military, employment of cutting-edge technology, and the infiltration of far-right ideologies into other extremist communities. Firstly, far-right groups and militias actively recruit from the U.S. military, particularly among returning servicemembers. (…). Secondly, today’s far-right extremists, like predecessors from previous generations, are employing cutting-edge technologies for terrorist purposes. (…) Finally, far-right ideologies have begun to infiltrate other extremist milieus, turning disparate communities into far-right hubs. Nowhere has this been more evident than in the incel ('involuntary celibate') movement, an online subculture of young, sometimes violent men frustrated at their inability to find sexual partners. (…) Fortunately, several of these issues parallel with law enforcement efforts against the Islamic State. (…) Lessons learned from the increasingly successful efforts to suppress the Islamic State’s online efforts should be applied to the far right; and lessons learned fighting the far right should be tested against the Salafi-jihadists."

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"When Does Terrorism Have a Strategic Effect?"

Terroranschläge wie der vom 11. September 2001 können weitreichende strategische Auswirkungen haben, schreibt der Terrorismus-Experte Daniel Byman. Der folgenreichste Terroranschlag der Post-9/11-Ära, die Zerstörung eines schiitischen Schreins im Irak im Jahr 2006, habe sich z.B. als Auslöser eines jahrelangen Bürgerkriegs herausgestellt, obwohl der Anschlag selbst keine Todesopfer gefordert hatte. "Not all terrorism is created equal. Some attacks are merely blips on the terrorism radar screen, grabbing headlines for a few days before life resumes as before. Other attacks, however, shake the world. The strategic effects of such an attack go far beyond whether it helps a terrorist group win, and they can be divided into two areas. First, terrorism can affect conflict and international politics, shaping foreign policy, sparking international and civil wars, and preventing peace negotiations. Second, terrorism can undermine democracy by decreasing faith in public institutions. The strategic success of terrorism often depends as much on the government response as it does the terrorist attack itself: too little or too much counterterrorism can do the terrorists’ jobs for them."

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"Military Deception: AI's Killer App?"

Der militärische Einsatz Künstlicher Intelligenz könnte auf dem Gebiet der gezielten Täuschung des Gegners nach Ansicht von Edward Geist und Marjory Blumenthal die auffälligsten Folgen haben. "Conventional wisdom has long held that advances in information technology would inevitably advantage 'finders' at the expense of 'hiders.' But that view seems to have been based more on wishful thinking than technical assessment. The immense potential of AI for those who want to thwart would-be 'finders' could offset if not exceed its utility for enabling them. Finders, in turn, will have to contend with both understanding reality and recognizing what is fake, in a world where faking is much easier. (…) Rather than lifting the 'fog of war,' AI and machine learning may enable the creation of 'fog of war machines' — automated deception planners designed to exacerbate knowledge quality problems."

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"Will Displaced Syrians Ever Return? History Says No"

Die Flüchtlingsexpertin Kara Ross Camarena und der Konfliktforscher Nils Hägerdal bezweifeln, dass der Großteil der syrischen Flüchtlinge tatsächlich in die Heimat zurückkehren wird. "Refugees who are displaced outside Syria must eventually decide whether to return to the country at all; inside Syria, all displaced persons must choose whether to return to their original homes or settle elsewhere in the country. So, if the Syrian civil war came to a decisive conclusion in the near future, would displaced Syrians return to their original homes? Judging by historical precedent, we should expect that most of them will not. (...) Millions of Syrians have spent the last several years trying to build a new life outside of Syria and many of them will never return to their country of birth. Those who do return — perhaps because of a particularly compelling emotional connection to home, or because their host country makes their lives miserable — join several million internally displaced persons who also have to decide where and how to rebuild their lives. Historical experience and demographic trends suggest that they will mostly settle in large and growing cities. The most important policy implication of this argument is that as the international community begins to plan for postwar reconstruction in Syria, stakeholders should focus on rebuilding the major cities and expect displaced persons to flock there."

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"Terrorist Groups, Artificial Intelligence, and Killer Drones."

Jacob Ware warnt, dass die zunehmenden Möglichkeiten von Waffensystemen mit Künstlicher Intelligenz auch von Terroristen genutzt werden könnten. "AI will enable terrorist groups to threaten physical security in new ways, making the current terrorism challenge even more difficult to address. According to a February 2018 report, terrorists could benefit from commercially available AI systems in several ways. The report predicts that autonomous vehicles will be used to deliver explosives; low-skill terrorists will be endowed with widely available high-tech products; attacks will cause far more damage; terrorists will create swarms of weapons to 'execute rapid, coordinated attacks'; and, finally, attackers will be farther removed from their targets in both time and location. As AI technology continues to develop and begins to proliferate, 'AI [will] expand the set of actors who are capable of carrying out the attack, the rate at which these actors can carry it out, and the set of plausible targets.'"

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"AI Will Change War, But Not in the Way You Think"

Jonathan Clifford, Regierungsberater und Reserveoffizier der U.S. Navy, erwartet nicht, dass die zunehmende Einführung Künstlicher Intelligenz im Militär den Charakter des Krieges grundlegend verändern wird. "Unlike science fiction movies, which depict the technology itself as an instrument of war, AI will function primarily as an enabler. AI will change how wars are fought, but not the nature of war. War is still, and will forever be, applied violence to achieve a political goal. (...) Nevertheless, AI is sure to permeate every aspect of warfighting — from movement to communication, logistics, intelligence, weapons, and people. (...) The race to acquire AI will be different than the race for the atomic bomb, intercontinental missiles, or precision-guided munitions. Some aspects will be similar — nations will attempt to be the first to develop and acquire AI systems and applications. But rather than a single space race 'Sputnik moment,' there will be continuous milestones in the AI race — algorithm updates, software patches, etc. The near-term difference between AI and previous technological innovations is that AI is iterative, incremental, and, most importantly, an enabler of all parts of warfare."

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"Intermediate-Range Missiles Are the Wrong Weapon for Today's Security Challenges"

Tom Countryman und Kingston Reif von der Arms Control Association bezweifeln, dass die nach dem Ende des INF-Vertrags mögliche Entwicklung neuer US-Mittelstreckenraketen die strategische Sicherheit der USA tatsächlich verbessern würde. Sowohl in Europa als auch in Asien gebe es angesichts innenpolitischer Widerstände und aufgrund der drohenden Reaktionen Russlands bzw. Chinas kaum Interessenten für eine dauerhafte Stationierung dieser Raketen. "Russia’s violation of the INF Treaty is a serious matter. But the U.S. pursuit of new ground-launched intermediate-range missiles is militarily unnecessary, would divide NATO, and would lead Russia to increase the number and type of intermediate-range missiles aimed against NATO targets. Congress would be wise to withhold its support for a new Euromissile race."

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"The Crisis is Coming: Syria and the End of the U.S.-Turkish Alliance"

Aaron Stein betrachtet die angekündigte türkische Militäroffensive gegen die Kurden im Norden Syriens vor dem Hintergrund der seit langem im Niedergang befindlichen Beziehungen der Türkei zu den USA. "In talks with the United States about the northeast, Ankara has pushed a maximalist position and demanded full control over a 32 kilometer-deep stretch of territory, spanning from the Euphrates River to the Syrian-Turkish-Iraqi border. The United States has sought to manage Ankara’s expectations, pushing against the notion of a Turkish-run zone, in favor of a U.S.-administered area, where Ankara would have a small, limited presence and Kurdish militants would be withdrawn from a strip of territory five to 14 kilometers deep. (...) At the core of the U.S.-Turkish divergence is the very real face that each side has fundamentally different conceptions of regional security. The root cause of the problem is that both America and Turkey see the other as a fundamentally destabilizing actor in the Middle East. While both sides remain interested in talking, given that the two sides are NATO members, they are not interested in compromise because each side has decided that its own national security interests in Syria are more important than the interests of the opposing party."

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"Whether it Likes It or Not, Europe is Being Pushed and Pulled into America's Iran Policy"

Michael Stephens hält es für "unausweichlich", dass Europa sich im Zuge der aktuellen Krise im Persischen Golf der Iran-Position der USA annähern wird. "The Gulf is going to become more militarized, and both Europe and the United States will have to rely on each other to keep the peace in an area of global importance that is now highly unstable. And so, deploying European military assets and manpower into the Gulf region will lock the Europeans into a U.S. security architecture out of which they cannot break out. Indeed the more Europe and the United States cooperate on Gulf security, the less likely it will be for the E3 to maintain a wall between their disagreement with Washington over the nuclear deal, and their increasing lock step coordination with Washington on constraining Iranian activities that destabilize the region. (...) The path ahead is difficult. London (not to mention Paris and Berlin) does not want to align itself with American policy on the JCPOA, but the omens all point toward that being the most likely outcome. The European position on the JCPOA weakens by the day, and the current climate of tension between London and Tehran does nothing to help the position of those who believe that diplomacy is the most effective way to solve this current crisis."

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"Blessed Be Thy Nuclear Weapons: The Rise of Russian Nuclear Orthodoxy"

Michael Kofman stellt das Buch "Russian Nuclear Orthodoxy: Religion, Politics, and Strategy" von Dmitry Adamsky vor, der die Verbindungen der russisch-orthodoxen Kirche zum "nuklear-militärisch-industriellen Komplex" in Russland untersucht hat. "Adamsky’s groundbreaking book lays out the largely unstudied history of how a nuclear priesthood emerged in Russia, permeated the units and commands in charge of Russia’s nuclear forces, and became an integral part of the nuclear weapons industry. Starting with the Soviet Union’s dissolution in 1991, through a process Adamsky frames as 'genesis, conversion, and operationalization,' the Russian Orthodox Church positioned itself 'as one of the main guardians of the state’s nuclear potential and, as such, claims the role of one of the main guarantors of Russian nuclear security.' (...) Adamsky’s book covers two distinct but equally fascinating processes that have taken place in post-Soviet Russia: the church’s integration into the nuclear-military complex and the political system’s parallel quest to engineer a national idea, lend itself legitimacy, and rebuild the power of the state that crumbled when the Soviet Union collapsed."

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"Explaining the Poverty of Germany's Strategic Debate"

US-Major Walter Haynes, derzeit Student an der Führungsakademie der Bundeswehr, findet es bedauernswert, dass Stimmen aus Militärkreisen in der sicherheitspolitischen Debatte in Deutschland weitgehend fehlen. Dies habe zum einen historische Gründe, sei aber auch auf ein generelles öffentliches Desinteresse an militär- und sicherheitspolitischen Fragen zurückzuführen. "As Nora Müller noted in a recent article, the Germans would like to behave like a 'big Switzerland,' focused primarily on their economy, and remain blissfully uninterested in interstate competition beyond the economic sort. Germans’ recent mistrust of the United States makes their support for collective security even less likely. The national mood reminds me of Trotsky’s aphorism: 'You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.' (...) What I think is missing is an accepted idea of national agency, or a choice to affect the world in support of Germany’s interests. As an American officer living in Germany, I’m surprised by how closely Germans follow U.S. politics, and I often end up listening to polemics on the follies of American foreign policy. (...) Left unsaid by my interlocutors is how Germany can contribute to improving any of these challenges."

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"Populism, the European Elections, and the Future of EU Foreign Policy"

Die beiden französischen Politikplaner Maya Kandel und Caroline Gondaud haben sich mit dem Einfluss "populistischer" Strömungen auf die europäische Außenpolitik beschäftigt. Das neue EU-Parlament könnte die Kompromissfindung erschweren und die EU-Außenpolitik in den kommenden Jahren paralysieren, so ihre Warnung. "The major risk is probably of stalling E.U. policymaking by blocking the possibility of compromise that is at the heart of any E.U. policy. That would risk further strengthening nationalist governments, and further undermining European citizens’ confidence in European institutions, by proving their major talking point: that the European Union is an inefficient bureaucracy unable to protect them. Thus, the most dangerous outcome of populist influence in the European Parliament is that the European Union will become paralyzed and irrelevant on the international scene, assuming the European populists are not able to develop a coherent project aimed at founding an alternative European Union."

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"Libya's Coming Forever War: Why Backing One Militia Against Another Is Not the Solution"

Frederic Wehrey und Emadeddin Badi bezweifeln, dass der Westen den Bürgerkrieg in Libyen durch die gezielte Unterstützung einer bestimmten Miliz beenden kann. "No single military or political actor has been able to exert a preponderance of control and sovereignty. Libya’s militia bosses and factional elites, including Haftar, have long had a mutual economic and political interest in keeping conflict simmering, eschewing both decisive outcomes on the battlefield and outside attempts to end the fighting. These armed actors have also have adroitly exploited competing and uncoordinated foreign interests in Libya. It is not simply Libyan National Army’s internal contradictions and weaknesses limit Haftar’s effectiveness as a would-be proxy for outside powers hoping to unify Libya. It is the fact that the fractured security landscape of Tripolitania, and its underlying political economy and social demography, have long prohibited any one actor from achieving dominance — especially one coming from the east."

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"Is the Space Force Viable? Personnel Problems on the Final Frontier"

Mark Cancian schreibt, dass die von US-Präsident Trump geforderte "United States Space Force" aller Voraussicht nach nicht die erhoffte "agile" und "innovative" Streitmacht, sondern eine bürokratische, kopflastige und teure Organisation werden dürfte. Er spricht sich deshalb dafür aus, die neue Agentur im Pentagon vorerst nach zivilen Maßstäben zu organisieren. "The proposal envisions the space force operating like the other military services, but it will be too small to be viable. In trying to produce the number of senior military officers needed to staff all the high-level functions expected of an independent military service, it would end up with one general for every 270 servicemembers — five times the rate of the rest of the department — and no enlisted troops. The entire force would be officers, a problem compounded when we consider the reserve components associated with the proposed new service. This raises the broader question: Why does a space force need to be military, anyway? (...) A civilian Defense Department agency would be better suited to the task because it could use the more flexible civilian personnel system and would not have to maintain a military rank pyramid. In the distant future, when manned spaceships cruise the ether and engage in combat, then a military space force might be needed. However, we are many decades from that eventuality."

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"How to End the Civil War in Somalia: Negotiate with al-Shabaab"

Der frühere Offizier der U.S. Army Jason Hartwig, der zwischen 2016 und 2018 als Militärberater in Somalia tätig war, ist davon überzeugt, dass der Konflikt im Land nur durch Verhandlungen mit der Al-Shabaab-Miliz beigelegt werden könne. "The U.S. intervention in Somalia has focused on the tactics of the conflict – insurgency and terrorism – at the expense of viewing the political violence in Somalia holistically. Faced with a weak Somali army and overstretched partner in AMISOM, U.S. policymakers turned to the counter-terrorism toolkit to arrest al-Shabaab’s gains in the past two years. But this approach fails to see the conflict in Somalia for what it is: another chapter in a civil war fought at varying intensities since the end of the 1980s. As in many civil wars, rebel groups will resort to terrorism based on a clear, if cruel, strategic logic. If we accept that al-Shabaab’s terrorist tactics are a symptom of the broader Somali civil war, the most important security question for Somalia is not how to defeat al-Shabaab, but rather, how to end a civil war. Through this lens, the most appropriate policy for the U.S. government is to pursue a negotiated settlement ending the civil war driving al-Shabaab’s terrorist activities."

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"Migration and Terrorism: The United States Can Learn from Europe's Mistakes"

Sam Mullins schreibt, dass in den vergangenen Jahren dutzende Terroristen durch Infiltrierung des "irregulären" Migrationsstroms nach Europa gelangt seien und dort blutige Anschläge durchgeführt hätten. Die Situation an der US-Grenze zu Mexiko sei in vieler Hinsicht anders. "(...) there are two critical differences compared to what happened in Europe. First is the fact that most of the people traveling to America’s southern border do not come from countries with significant terrorism problems. (...) The second key difference between the United States and Europe is what happens when irregular migrants arrive at the border. (...) asylum applicants are also interviewed, fingerprinted, and evidently checked against the Terrorist Screening Database, which includes more than a million known or suspected terrorists. (...) What are the lessons for the United States? The first is that whatever vulnerabilities still exist at the southern border, U.S. security is already pretty good (especially relative to the scale of the threat). (...) Terrorist infiltration of the southern border is certainly possible, and Americans should not ignore this. But the demonstrable threat so far has been small, and it remains relatively unlikely. Looking across the Atlantic, where terrorist infiltration has taken place on a much larger scale and with devastating consequences, Americans should feel reassured that their own borders do not suffer from the same gaping holes in security that terrorists were able to exploit in Europe."

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"The Case Against Arms Embargos, Even for Saudi Arabia"

Ray Rounds erläutert, warum er eine Restriktion von US-Waffenverkäufen an Länder wie Saudi-Arabien oder die Türkei für ein "stumpfes" Instrument mit unerwünschten Nebenfolgen hält. "Arms exports are best used for maintaining or strengthening relationships while limiting adversary access to client states; a tool of nuanced influence, not outright coercion. In fact, threatening to withhold arms sales to coerce a state into changing its behavior often has the opposite effect, leading clients to diversify their arms sourcing instead of shifting course. Similarly, calls to restrict technology transfer and worries about demands for direct offsets mistake what is known as 'design technology transfer' for the much more difficult 'capacity' level of transfer. Both are explained in more detail below, but for now it is worth noting that design transfer, the level at which most of these offsets occur, does not lead to the creation of an independent defense industry, but instead provides the United States with a source of political power."

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"The Partnership for Peace: A Quiet NATO Success Story"


Die frühere US-Botschafterin in Schweden, Azita Raji, lobt das 1994 geschaffene Programm "Partnerschaft für den Frieden", bei dem die NATO mit derzeit 29 Staaten kooperiert, als eine der erfolgreichsten diplomatischen Initiativen des Militärbündnisses. "As the U.S. ambassador to Sweden, I witnessed how useful this program is to NATO and Sweden. Sweden is a highly effective and engaged NATO partner, and it participates in most NATO exercises, including the large Trident Juncture exercise held in and around Norway last year. It has structured its military forces and procurement decisions to ensure NATO interoperability, and has made significant contributions to alliance military operations, such as in Libya and Afghanistan. In turn, NATO’s trust in Sweden has deepened, as evidenced by its decision to establish, during my time in Stockholm, prepositioned NATO supplies in Sweden. NATO membership is likely not on the agenda for Sweden or Finland any time soon, but Sweden’s contribution as a partner rivals that of many allies."

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"Trump Cancels Drone Strike Civilian Casualty Report: Does It Matter?"

US-Präsident Trump hat am 6. März den Verzicht auf einen von Amtsvorgänger Obama eingeführten Jahresbericht zu US-Drohnenangriffen außerhalb von Kriegszonen verkündet. Nicholas Grossman meint, dass die Entscheidung aus Sicht der Transparenz nicht zu begrüßen sei, aber auch nicht überbewertet werden sollte. Zum einen seien die im Report präsentierten Zahlen nie besonders aussagekräftig gewesen, zum andern habe Trump den Drohnenkrieg entgegen mancher Berichte nicht substantiell verschärft. "Under the Trump administration, the drone program has continued, but its focus has shifted away from Pakistan to Yemen and Somalia. In contrast to claims that Trump substantially increased drone strikes, the data shows consistency across administrations. (...) It’s more a change in the location of terrorist and counter-terrorist activity than Trump altering America’s drone strategy."

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"Should the Names of Terrorists Never Pass Our Lips?"

Die neuseeländische Premierministerin Jacinda Ardern hat nach dem Anschlag in Christchurch verkündet, den Namen des Attentäters nicht aussprechen zu wollen. Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens fürchtet, dass derartige Aktionen ihre wohlgemeinten Ziele nicht erreichen und stattdessen ein Vakuum schaffen werden, das von Verschwörungstheorien gefüllt werden könnte. "If one were to take Ardern’s 'oxygen of publicity' position to its logical conclusion, then there is no reason to give much attention to the attacks themselves. We can simply wipe these horrible events from our collective conscious and they will just disappear and reduce the risk of future atrocities. If only it was this easy to prevent terrorism. (...) One of the problems many people appear to have overlooked is that politicians and the media take a major risk when they refuse to confront or discuss key pieces of information relating to terrorist attacks. Conspiracy theories, and those who peddle them, are a major component of many violent ideologies and act as a driver for those who act in their name. (...) Conspiracy theories thrive on a lack of information. Where there is a gap in our knowledge of an event, the conspiracy theory proffers a phony explanation that fits with its view of the world and how it works. If legitimate sources refuse to take responsibility for informing the public of who the terrorist is, it allows the conspiracy theory the space it needs to create its own myths and lore."

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"The Kosovo War in Retrospect"

James Goldgeier und Gorana Grgić schreiben, dass der NATO-Luftkrieg gegen Serbien vor 20 Jahren auf dem Höhepunkt der unipolaren Vormachtstellung der USA geführt worden sei. Einige der damals gestellten Fragen seien auch heute noch aktuell. "(...) the Kosovo War raises interesting questions for candidates running for president: Should the United States and its NATO allies have acted 20 years ago to prevent what may have been another act of genocide committed by Milošević? Would they simply stand by today under similar circumstances given current attitudes toward military intervention? (...) Kosovo was, in a way, the opportunity for the West to atone for its failure to prevent the genocides of the mid-1990s. It set a precedent, however, for U.S. action regardless of support from the U.N. Security Council, and only four years later, the George W. Bush administration launched an attack with a 'coalition of the willing' against Iraq for its alleged failure to give up weapons of mass destruction, in that instance ignoring not just Russian opposition but that from allies like France and Germany as well. And when Vladimir Putin decided to invade Ukraine in 2014 and annex Crimea, he could point to the Kosovo intervention to argue he was simply acting on similar grounds to protect the Russian-speaking population next door."

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"'Cost Plus 50' and Bringing U.S. Troops Home: A Look at the Numbers"

Die US-Regierung will von Verbündeten wie Deutschland, Südkorea und Japan künftig deutlich höhere Zahlungen für die Stationierung von US-Truppen vor Ort verlangen. Rick Berger vom American Enterprise Institute hat eigene Berechnungen zum "Cost Plus 50"-Plan angestellt. Auf Deutschland könnten demnach zusätzliche Forderungen von vier bis neun Milliarden US-Dollar pro Jahr zukommen. Eine mögliche Folge dieser Forderungen wäre der Abzug der US-Truppen, so Berger. "Clearly, 'cost plus 50' would be a fundamental change in burden-sharing negotiations. Such a change could engender responses from allies and/or failures of negotiations that make a full withdrawal of U.S. forces more likely — an option Trump has frequently discussed with interest. (...) The current U.S. overseas basing posture essentially pays for itself. Withdrawing U.S. forces from major bases would definitely cost the American taxpayer several billions of dollars and would likely end up costing tens of billions of dollars. Following that initial expenditure, the United States would be forced to either abandon fundamental tenets of its post-World War II defense strategy or spend tens of billions more on U.S.-based forces in order to remain capable of carrying out the current National Defense Strategy."

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"Germany's Self-Delusion About a 'No-Spying' Pact with China"

Die Bundesregierung strebt Berichten zufolge ein Anti-Spionageabkommen mit China an, um zu verhindern, dass Peking Zugang zu den Daten auf in Deutschland betriebenen chinesischen Produkten haben wird. Peter Mattis hält diese Strategie für blauäugig. "There are at least three reasons to not take Germany’s idea seriously. In addition, what happened after the U.S.-China agreement in 2015 does not give cause for optimism that Beijing would honor another such deal. First, there is no reason to take the assurances of Chinese officials and Huawei executives at face value. (...) Beijing is going to do what it is going to do; the law is just a public statement to clarify what the party expects of its citizens. Second, Germany is home to a number of Chinese dissidents and Uyghur exiles, and it seems unlikely that the Chinese Communist Party would forgo its ability to surveil them. (...) Third, Germany cannot credibly build any threat of potential consequences into a no-spying agreement. Even if the Chinese government is caught exploiting Huawei’s equipment, threatening meaningful consequences requires Berlin to make several assumptions about the future. The first is that future German leaders will be prepared to accept the political and economic costs of ripping out and replacing Huawei’s equipment. The economic costs also include any downtime created by disruptions to normal service. The second is that alternative 5G equipment providers will be available — a questionable assumption given Huawei’s undercutting of the international market."

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"NATO Expansion Got Some Big Things Right"

In der Debatte über das Pro und Contra der NATO-Erweiterung in Osteuropa spricht sich Mike Sweeney gegen eine kategorische Verurteilung der Erweiterungsstrategie aus. Er reagiert dabei auf einen Beitrag von Mark und Matthew Cancian und schreibt: "(...) while Russian concerns and humiliation should be an important strategic consideration, it can never be the only one. Should NATO have not intervened to stop the carnage in Bosnia out of deference to fraternity between Moscow and Belgrade? Would European security really have been better served by a series of unabated Srbrenica’s? Do all the states formerly under Moscow’s dominion during the Cold War really have no say in their own security arrangements simply out of deference to Russian insecurity? Once again, other states have agency and other factors beyond NATO must be taken into account in assessing why Russia is where it is today. So, should NATO expansion stop? Ironically, in the end, I am inclined to mostly agree with the authors of the article I’ve spent so much time criticizing. NATO can’t – and shouldn’t – seek more members from the former Soviet space. It is unlikely any of the existing neutral countries of Europe would now seek formal membership in the alliance as, again, the move – on balance – is likely to be more destabilizing than not with regard to Russia."

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"How Not to Compete in the Arctic: The Blurry Lines Between Friend and Foe"


Die strategische Situation in der Arktis widerspreche in vieler Hinsicht dem gewohnten Bild der internationalen Sicherheitspolitik, stellt Stephanie Pezard von der RAND Corporation fest. Verbündete wie die USA und Kanada hätten in wichtigen regionalen Fragen unterschiedliche Vorstellungen, während Rivalen wie Russland und Norwegen auf bestimmten Gebieten kooperierten. "Russia’s mix of competition and cooperation with Norway displays some similarities to its relations with the United States in the Arctic. Recent U.S. strategic documents portray Russia as a competitor of the United States and an unambiguous rival that, like China, 'challenge[s] American power.' Yet in the Arctic, Russia is also a neighbor with whom trivial matters need to be discussed and deconflicted before they become nontrivial. (...) Similarly, despite tensions on other issues, over the past decade the United States and Russia have successfully pushed forward with other Arctic and non-Arctic nations on new legal instruments to help regulate or promote Arctic activities."

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"It is Time for Germans to Talk About Sicherheitspolitik"

Ulrike Franke vom European Council on Foreign Relations präsentiert den neuen deutschsprachigen Podcast "Sicherheitshalber", der sich mit sicherheitspolitischen Fragen beschäftigen wird. In der deutschen Öffentlichkeit werde eine aktive Sicherheits- und Verteidigungspolitik immer noch überwiegend negativ beurteilt, so Franke. Dabei gehe eine durchaus vernünftige Vorsicht bei der Beurteilung militärischer Interventionen mit einer generellen Ablehnung einer offenen Debatte über militärische Fragen einher. "It is this approach that leads to the 'Swissification' and 'self-dwarfization' of Germany, and ultimately to its weakening. Of course, military means should be among the last tools of foreign policy. Not intervening militarily is often the sensible foreign policy choice. But taking the capability off the table completely, as many Germans wish to do, not only limits choices, it also decreases the meaningfulness of many non-military foreign policy actions. Germany needs and deserves a better debate on foreign and, in particular, security and defense policy, which includes the larger public."

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"How the Deep State Came to America: A History"

Der Türkei-Experte Ryan Gingeras erklärt Entstehung und Bedeutung des Begriffs des "Tiefen Staates", der in der Debatte über Präsident Trump seit 2017 auch in den USA eine neue Rolle spielt. "Up until February 2017, extreme political events were usually the catalysts for those who found the term fitting or helpful. In other words, 'it’s the deep state' has served as a concise answer for those who question the true origins of any number of extraordinary, usually violent, episodes: Susurluk, the JFK assassination, 9/11, and so on. What is remarkable about the deep state’s arrival to America is that it has been used so pre-emptively. For pundits who now use the term seriously, the American deep state matters because it is capable of or intent upon unseating President Donald Trump and not necessarily because of what it has done before."

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Informationsportal Krieg und Frieden

Wo gibt es Kriege und Gewaltkonflikte? Und wo herrscht am längsten Frieden? Welches Land gibt am meisten für Rüstung aus? liefert wichtige Daten und Fakten zu Krieg und Frieden.

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Innerstaatliche Konflikte

Vom Kosovo nach Kolumbien, von Somalia nach Süd-Thailand: Weltweit schwelen über 280 politische Konflikte. Und immer wieder droht die Lage gewaltsam zu eskalieren.

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Zahlen und Fakten


Kaum ein Thema wird so intensiv und kontrovers diskutiert wie die Globalisierung. "Zahlen und Fakten" liefert Grafiken, Texte und Tabellen zu einem der wichtigsten und vielschichtigsten Prozesse der Gegenwart.

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