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15.10.2019

"Can the Last Surviving Democracy of the Arab Spring Hang On?"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/10/saied-tunisia-arab-spring-democracy-presidential-election.htm
l

In der Stichwahl der tunesischen Präsidentschaftswahlen hat sich der parteilose Verfassungsrechtler Kais Saied Prognosen zufolge deutlich durchgesetzt. Angesichts dieses "Schockresultats" sorgt sich Robert Zaretsky um die Zukunft der "letzten überlebenden Demokratie des Arabischen Frühlings". "The choice between Karoui and Saïed, one observer sighed, was tantamount to a choice between the plague and cholera. Pestilential metaphors aside, a ballot pitting a social reactionary without a political program against a chameleonlike wheeler-dealer was not why many Tunisians took to the streets and claimed power eight years ago. What will a Saïed presidency mean for Tunisia’s fledgling democracy? Though he is a constitutional professor, Saïed is an unknown quantity as a politician. Far from proving to be undemocratic, he might prove radically democratic. He ran on the promise of taking down the centralized state and replacing it with local institutions in order to make politics more participative. Yet urbanized and middle-class Tunisians worry about Saïed’s religious conservatism. And they are right to worry, since he doesn’t have a party apparatus behind him and will need to turn to Ennahda, which holds the largest number of seats in the national assembly, to pass legislation."

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02.01.2019

"How Trump Solved the North Korea Crisis by Not Solving It"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/01/trump-north-korea-nuclear-threat.html?via=gdpr-consent

Joshua Keating stellt erstaunt fest, dass es US-Präsident Trump gelungen sei, die noch vor einem Jahr so gefährlich wirkende Nordkorea-Krise zu entspannen, ohne wirkliche Verhandlungsfortschritte zu erreichen. "By any normal criteria, including his own during his first year in office, Trump’s outreach to North Korea has been a failure. Kim’s weapons are still a threat to his neighbors and — depending on the questionable reliability of his long-range missiles — possibly the United States as well. And the U.S. has far less leverage over him than it did a year ago. (...) But in multiple ways, tensions have eased over the past year. Despite the wariness of U.S. officials, South Korea and North Korea have taken major steps toward normalizing relations, including pulling troops back from the Demilitarized Zone and reconnecting road and rail links. (...) His critics may grumble about him taking credit for a nuclear breakthrough that never happened, but Trump’s sales job was helped by the months of “fire and fury” and 'big button' tweets. The current state of affairs is hardly ideal, but no one really wants to go back to how things were before Singapore."

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18.10.2018

"There’s No Path to Victory in Afghanistan"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/10/afghanistan-war-end-negotiation-taliban-isis-al-qaida.html

Fred Kaplan schreibt, dass das US-Militär in diesem Monat zum ersten Mal Rekruten eingezogen habe, die zum Zeitpunkt der Invasion in Afghanistan noch nicht geboren waren. Seiner Meinung nach gibt es keinen erkennbaren Weg zu einem Sieg der USA über die Taliban. Nach einem Rückblick auf die politischen Begleitumstände des Krieges kommt er zu dem Schluss: "A negotiated settlement is the only way out. The Taliban seem disinclined to negotiate at the moment, since they’re winning on the battlefield. But they might be lured to peace talks if the reward were sufficiently enticing, and the only reward that might bring them is the prospect of a U.S. withdrawal — though not an unconditional withdrawal. Afghanistan is a nexus of international interests and intrigue. China, Russia, Iran, and Pakistan all have geopolitical and economic interests in its future. America’s relations with all four countries are dismal at the moment; yet, we depend on at least one of them at any given time for basing and overflight rights to supply our troops there — which means it isn’t entirely out of the question to work with at least two or three to contrive a peace."

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18.09.2018

"Why Russia Can’t Do Anything About Other Countries Killing Its Troops in Syria"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/09/russian-plane-shot-down-syria-israel.html

Der angeblich durch Israel herbeigeführte Abschuss eines russischen Militärflugzeugs in Syrien ist Joshua Keating zufolge nur das jüngste Beispiel einer Serie von Vorfällen, bei denen russische Soldaten von anderen Akteuren ohne weiterreichende diplomatische Konsequenzen getötet wurden. "Russia is in a very strange position in Syria. It’s arguably the key outside actor in the conflict and, more impressively, has decent relationships, or at least working relationships, with most of the other key players, many of whom are in open conflict with each other: the Assad regime, the Saudis and the Gulf states, Iran, Israel, Turkey, the Kurds, the United States. (That last one’s a little more complicated.) Because of these delicate relationships, Russia does not appear to be in a position to respond or even voice major objections when one of those actors kills its troops, accidentally or in some cases deliberately. This can’t be an encouraging message for the troops and 'volunteers' in Syria who Putin is putting in harm’s way."

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24.07.2018

"Maybe Trump Isn’t the Internet’s Fault, After All"

https://slate.com/technology/2018/07/the-internet-isnt-why-trump-won-stanford-and-brown-study-finds.html

Eine neue Studie ist zu dem Schluss gekommen, dass das Internet beim Wahlsieg Donald Trumps eine eher geringe Rolle gespielt habe. "For all the hand-wringing about fake news, Russian trolls, Infowars, and Cambridge Analytica, the internet may not have helped elect Donald Trump after all. That, at least, is the strong suggestion of a new study from economists at Stanford and Brown universities. Trump performed worse than previous Republican candidates among internet users and people who got campaign news online, the authors find in a paper published July 18 in the journal PLOS One. And he outperformed his predecessors among the demographic groups least likely to be online. In other words, Mitt Romney and John McCain got more support from internet users than Trump did."

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29.04.2018

"Kim Jong-un Says North Korea Will Abandon Nuclear Program if U.S. Pledges Not to Invade"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/04/kim-jong-un-says-north-korea-will-abandon-nuclear-program-if-
u-s-pledges-not-to-invade.html

Nordkoreas Staatschef Kim Jong-un hat den Verzicht auf sein Atomwaffenprogramm während des historischen Gipfeltreffens mit Südkoreas Präsident Moon Jae-in offenbar davon abhängig gemacht, dass die USA eine mögliche Invasion Nordkoreas unmissverständlich ausschließen. "North Korean leader Kim Jong-un told his South Korean counterpart President Moon Jae-in that North Korea would be willing to denuclearize in return for a commitment that the U.S. will not invade the country. The New York Times reported Kim’s offer — made Friday during the historic summit between the two countries — and other details of the meeting Sunday via a South Korean government spokesman. (...) Kim’s rapid de-escalation has been dramatic and his comments at Panmunjom continued that trend. Kim did, however, appear to hedge his bet 'indicating that denuclearizing his country could be a long process that required multiple rounds of negotiations and steps to build trust,' according to the Times. 'But he laid out a vague idea of what his impoverished country would demand in return for giving up its nuclear weapons.'"

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22.02.2018

"Why Sending Armed Veterans to Guard Schools Would Be Ludicrous"

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/02/the-flaws-in-trumps-idea-to-send-armed-military-veterans-to-g
uard-schools.html?wpsrc=sh_all_dt_tw_ru

Das Schulmassaker in Florida am 14. Februar hat in den USA erneut eine Debatte über mögliche Wege zur Verhinderung derartiger Gewaltakte ausgelöst. Dabei ist u.a. die Bewachung von Schulen durch bewaffnete Armee-Veteranen vorgeschlagen worden. Phillip Carter erläutert, warum dies seiner Ansicht nach eine "lächerliche Idee" ist. "Although their firearms familiarity is better than the national average, most troops and veterans don’t have the skill to carry out the kind of duty Trump suggests. It would take multiple troops to secure a single school, making this effort incredibly costly. And even if the logistics made sense, arming veterans to guard schools would turn the occasional incident into a firefight, likely killing or wounding many more in the crossfire. (...) The 'good guy with a gun' scenario is a dangerous fantasy that doesn’t work in practice. It doesn’t work, in part, because running to the sound of gunfire is a brave, unnatural act that even some police or armed guards struggle with, as appears to be the case in Parkland, where an armed sheriff’s deputy did nothing to stop the killing. In the event an armed guard actually did intervene, more deaths or injuries would likely be the result."

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24.09.2017

"The End of the German Exception"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/the_good_fight/2017/09/afd_party_enters_german_parliament
_the_country_is_no_longer_immune_from.html

Mit dem Einzug der AfD in den Bundestag könne man sich von der Vorstellung verabschieden, dass Deutschland vom Aufstieg rechtspopulistischer Bewegungen in westlichen Demokratien aus bestimmten Gründen verschont bleiben wird, schreibt Yascha Mounk. "(...) the truth of the matter is that, for all of the idiosyncrasies that determine the outcomes of particular elections, the wider populist turn is being driven by deep and long-lasting transformations: Across North America and Western Europe, citizens suffer from stagnating living standards and an uncertain economic future. In all of these countries, they are yet to come to terms with an influx of immigrants and a changing conception of membership in the nation. And in all of these countries, the rise of the internet and of social media is making it much easier for extreme or hateful voices to leave their mark."

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02.08.2017

"The Warrior Caste"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2017/08/the_warrior_caste_of_military_families_t
hat_fight_america_s_wars.html

Die USA verlasse sich bei ihren Kriegen immer stärker auf eine gesellschaftliche "Kriegerkaste" von aus vielen Generationen bestehenden Militärfamilien, stellt Amy Schafer fest. Dies sei aus mehreren Gründen problematisch. "While at first glance this makes sense — children are likely to follow in their siblings’ and parents’ footsteps — it’s a remarkable gut check when you look at the past 15 years of war. The military draws many recruits from the same communities and the same families, isolating those in uniform from society and vice versa. In essence, the self-selection dynamics have created a 'warrior caste.' (...) Despite the near-constant engagement of the U.S. military overseas, the everyday welfare and lives of most Americans are unaffected. There are no rations, no war bonds, and no protests over the lives lost and treasure expended. (...) The isolation of military service to relatively few Americans not only affects the makeup of the military but how it intersects with society. It’s a lot easier to go along with the president’s plans for military action when it’s someone else’s sons, daughters, or parents doing the fighting."

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27.03.2017

Stop Saying That Trump’s Plan to Fight ISIS Is the Same As Obama’s

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/03/27/stop_saying_that_trump_s_plan_to_fight_isis_is_the_same
_as_obama_s.html?wpsrc=sh_all_dt_tw_top

Joshua Keating widerspricht der Einschätzung einiger Medien, dass US-Präsident Trumps Strategie zur Bekämpfung des IS sich nicht wesentlich von der seines Amtsvorgängers Obama unterscheide. Trump habe die Einschränkungen für Einsätze des US-Militärs reduziert, was bereits jetzt zu deutlich mehr zivilen Opfern geführt habe. "He may not know more than the generals do about ISIS, but Trump does appear to be fulfilling his campaign pledges to 'bomb the shit' out of them and stop what he called Obama’s 'politically correct' efforts to protect civilians. (...) Most dramatically, the military has also been deploying thousands of new ground combat troops to the region, where they could potentially be called upon to fight ISIS. The troops sent to Syria so far have mostly been tasked with assisting Kurdish-led forces, rather than taking the fight to ISIS directly, but it’s not hard to imagine a scenario in which that could change. The likelihood of a large number of U.S. ground troops being involved in direct combat in Syria has gone up significantly since Trump took office."

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07.03.2017

"WikiLeaks’ Attack on U.S. Intelligence"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2017/03/wikileaks_cia_hacking_tool_trove_help
s_russia.html

Fred Kaplan hält die neuen WikiLeaks-Enthüllungen über CIA-Hacker-Werkzeuge für einen verdeckten Angriff Russlands auf die USA. "One former cyberintelligence official told me Tuesday, 'This could be more damaging to national security than the Snowden leaks. We’ve had to depend on CIA collection to make up for the NSA losses caused by Snowden. Now our intel is more degraded.' (...) there is nothing in these documents, nothing even in the WikiLeaks introduction, to suggest that the CIA uses any of these devices to spy on American citizens. Assuming that is the case, there is nothing improper about any of these programs. This is what spy agencies do: They spy. (...) At a moment when nearly everyone is criticizing Russia for hacking the U.S. presidential election, the Russians can point to these documents and say, 'See? The Americans do this, too.' (...) This is the war we’re in with the Kremlin right now. That point is widely accepted. The latest WikiLeaks cache is another volley in that war."

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20.02.2017

"Trump Just Hired the Army’s Smartest Officer"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2017/02/new_national_security_adviser_h_r_mcm
aster_is_the_army_s_smartest_officer.html

Die Ernennung von Herbert Raymond McMaster zum neuen Nationalen Sicherheitsberater des US-Präsidenten ist in den US-Medien und selbst bei vielen Trump-Kritikern auf Zustimmung gestoßen. Fred Kaplan schreibt, dass McMaster, nach Ansicht vieler Beobachter der "klügste Offizier der US Army", Verteidigungsminister Mattis nahe stehe. "He has strong ties to Secretary of Defense James Mattis, having known him in Iraq when Mattis was a division commander, and, along with Mattis, McMaster will likely resist policies that revive torture or paint Muslim nations with a broad and hostile brush. However, it is unclear what McMaster’s views are on other broad issues of policy, regarding Russia, China, or Israel, for example. (...) The key thing to know about McMaster — an active-duty three-star general and deputy commander of the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command — is that he has made a career of speaking truth to power, often instinctively, without the slightest talent for fawning to his superiors."

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15.02.2017

"Why Justin Trudeau Won’t Criticize Trump"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2017/02/why_canadian_prime_minister_justin_trude
au_won_t_criticize_donald_trump.html

Nach Japans Premierminister Abe hat nun auch Kanadas Premierminister Trudeau bei seinem Besuch in Washington darauf verzichtet, US-Präsident Trump trotz bestehender politischer Differenzen zu kritisieren. Die USA seien der wichtigste Handelspartner Kanadas, Trudeau habe sich deshalb wie alle kanadischen Regierungschefs in einer "paradoxen" Situation befunden, analysiert Chris Berube. "For Trudeau, there is no good outcome when it comes to dealing with Trump. Polls suggest Canadians would be happy to see their government take on the American president. According to one, over 80 percent of Canadians disapprove of Trump’s performance, while another suggests 58 percent of Canadians would approve of a trade war with America if Trump introduced new tariffs. But officials in Trudeau’s government worry that Canada has more to lose in a trade fight with the United States, particularly after the Canadian economy went through a slowdown in 2016. (...) The meeting between [Trump and Trudeau] was stilted and cordial. For Trudeau, that may be an atmosphere worth cultivating."

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10.02.2017

"Thank the 'Deep State' for Quashing Trump’s Torture Plans"

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/02/meet_the_people_who_helped_quash_tr
ump_s_plans_to_reinstitute_torture.html

Phillip Carter meint, dass es dem "Tiefen Staat" im Pentagon und den Geheimdiensten zu verdanken sei, dass US-Präsident Trump von seiner Forderung nach einer Wiedereinführung der Folter von Terrorverdächtigen abgerückt sei. "In many ways, the story of torture is a parable for learning across the national security community since 9/11. In the first months and years after those devastating terror attacks, America lashed out at its enemies. We slowly, and painfully, learned to act more wisely. Our military learned to practice counterinsurgency instead of indiscriminate violence; our intelligence community built strong relationships with allies to target terrorists in the shadows before they could ever harm us. During his campaign, President Trump caricatured this learning as soft and signaled that he wanted a return to more bellicose American national security policy. This cartoonish approach won’t work, and the deep state is our best hope for putting the Trump administration on a better path."

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