In his final address to the American public as President, on January 17, 1961, Dwight D. Eisenhower famously warned of the rise of a military-industrial complex and the threat it posed to what he saw as the ultimate goal of U.S. foreign policy, peace. Eisenhower valued the goal of peace and realized that its priority as a guiding ideal for U.S. policy was undermined by a set of interests that were being cemented and expanded in the Cold War climate. He described the potentially distorting impact on U.S. policy—not only by intricate design but also “unsought” as ideology, interests and profit converged around militarization. Waste was not Eisenhower’s foremost concern when he drew attention to the military-industrial complex. Rather, he was concerned with the distortion of interests that skewed the focus of U.S. foreign policy. The “Global War on Terror” extends and expands the threat Eisenhower identified. In addition to the skewing factor of commercial and political interests in large-scale weapon systems, tilting the balance of democratic practice away from the interests of peace is the expansion of securitization and intelligence. We must now speak of a security-intelligence-military industrial complex, which ebbs away at transparent democratic practices.Continue Reading →
As of 2015, 43 peace operations had deployed to 15 different African countries. Africa’s increasing efforts to support its own peace operations have led to African peace and security organisations both leading on, and contributing the mainstay of personnel to, these missions. This paper examines a number of African peace operations and analyses the evolution of the mission mandates. A selection of four representative peace operations – Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Somalia, and Darfur – which differ in terms of timeframe, implementing authority, size and conflict dynamics are examined to assess patterns, trends and anomalies of mandates over the life cycle of their missions.Academic and policy-related literature places emphasis on the impact of UN Security Council geopolitics, roles and responsibilities supporting civilian protection, the AU’s financial, materiel and human resource deficiencies, and the role of peacebuilding. However, little has been written on the evolution of wider peace mission mandates as well as the role of African organisations in developing these mandates.Continue Reading →
This paper analyzes the African Union (AU)’s normative framework on Unconstitutional Changes of Government (UCG), and is intended to serve three purposes: to trace the origins of the norm, identifying the major gaps; to review the AU’s implementation and enforcement of the norm; and to discuss potential means for reconciling the identified gaps between the norm and practice.Continue Reading →
Excerpt from “What Went Wrong”. Full article published by The Cipher Brief, August 3, 2016.
At the heart of South Sudan’s descent into chaos is a failed effort at security sector reform. When Sudan’s long civil war ended in 2005, the U.S. – along with other donors – poured money and expertise in trying […]Continue Reading →
This note briefly outlines a research agenda on mercenaries and private military companies (PMC’s) in Africa’s political marketplaces. It is driven by: (a) a desire to understand mercenarism within the context of broader political, economic and social changes in global and local governance; and (b) the need to move away from simplistic analyses […]Continue Reading →
Tagsadvocacy Africa African Union arms trade atrocities AU book review Bosnia conflict data corruption Democratic Republic of Congo Drugs Egypt elections Eritrea Ethiopia famine foreign policy gender genocide human rights memorial Indonesia intervention Iraq justice Libya Mali mediation memorialization new wars peace political marketplace Re-Framing the Debate Research Somalia South Africa South Sudan Sudan Syria trafficking UN Unlearning violence US Youth Zenawi