Armed Humanitarians

Author: Nathan Hodge
Editor: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 1608194450
Size: 19,57 MB
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In May 2003, President George W. Bush declared victory in Iraq. But while we won the war, we catastrophically lost the peace. Our failure prompted a fundamental change in our foreign policy. Confronted with the shortcomings of "shock and awe," the U.S. military shifted its focus to "stability operations": counterinsurgency and the rebuilding of failed states. In less than a decade, foreign assistance has become militarized; humanitarianism has been armed. Combining recent history and firsthand reporting, Armed Humanitarians traces how the concepts of nation-building came into vogue, and how, evangelized through think tanks, government seminars, and the press, this new doctrine took root inside the Pentagon and the State Department. Following this extraordinary experiment in armed social work as it plays out from Afghanistan and Iraq to Africa and Haiti, Nathan Hodge exposes the difficulties of translating these ambitious new theories into action. Ultimately seeing this new era in foreign relations as a noble but flawed experiment, he shows how armed humanitarianism strains our resources, deepens our reliance on outsourcing and private contractors, and leads to perceptions of a new imperialism, arguably a major factor in any number of new conflicts around the world. As we attempt to build nations, we may in fact be weakening our own. Nathan Hodge is a Washington, D.C.-based writer who specializes in defense and national security. He has reported from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia, and a number of other countries in the Middle East and former Soviet Union. He is the author, with Sharon Weinberger, of A Nuclear Family Vacation, and his work has appeared in Slate, the Financial Times, Foreign Policy, and many other newspapers and magazines.

We Meant Well

Author: Peter Van Buren
Editor: Metropolitan Books
ISBN: 1429995238
Size: 15,84 MB
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A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction of 2011 title From a State Department insider, the first account of our blundering efforts to rebuild Iraq—a shocking and rollicking true-life tale of Americans abroad Charged with rebuilding Iraq, would you spend taxpayer money on a sports mural in Baghdad's most dangerous neighborhood to promote reconciliation through art? How about an isolated milk factory that cannot get its milk to market? Or a pastry class training women to open cafés on bombed-out streets without water or electricity? According to Peter Van Buren, we bought all these projects and more in the most expensive hearts-and-minds campaign since the Marshall Plan. We Meant Well is his eyewitness account of the civilian side of the surge—that surreal and bollixed attempt to defeat terrorism and win over Iraqis by reconstructing the world we had just destroyed. Leading a State Department Provincial Reconstruction Team on its quixotic mission, Van Buren details, with laser-like irony, his yearlong encounter with pointless projects, bureaucratic fumbling, overwhelmed soldiers, and oblivious administrators secluded in the world's largest embassy, who fail to realize that you can't rebuild a country without first picking up the trash. Darkly funny while deadly serious, We Meant Well is a tragicomic voyage of ineptitude and corruption that leaves its writer—and readers—appalled and disillusioned but wiser.

Overtreated

Author: Shannon Brownlee
Editor: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 9781596917293
Size: 17,53 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Our health care is staggeringly expensive, yet one in six Americans has no health insurance. We have some of the most skilled physicians in the world, yet one hundred thousand patients die each year from medical errors. In this gripping, eye-opening book, award-winning journalist Shannon Brownlee takes readers inside the hospital to dismantle some of our most venerated myths about American medicine. Brownlee dissects what she calls "the medical-industrial complex" and lays bare the backward economic incentives embedded in our system, revealing a stunning portrait of the care we now receive. Nevertheless, Overtreated ultimately conveys a message of hope by reframing the debate over health care reform. It offers a way to control costs and cover the uninsured, while simultaneously improving the quality of American medicine. Shannon Brownlee's humane, intelligent, and penetrating analysis empowers readers to avoid the perils of overtreatment, as well as pointing the way to better health care for everyone.

Derailing Democracy In Afghanistan

Author: Noah Coburn
Editor: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231166206
Size: 17,53 MB
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This volume shows how Afghani elections since 2004 have threatened to derail the country’s fledgling democracy. Examining presidential, parliamentary, and provincial council elections and conducting interviews with more than one hundred candidates, officials, community leaders, and voters, the text shows how international approaches to Afghani elections have misunderstood the role of local actors, who have hijacked elections in their favor, alienated communities, undermined representative processes, and fueled insurgency, fostering a dangerous disillusionment among Afghan voters.

A Nuclear Family Vacation

Author: Nathan Hodge
Editor: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 1608196690
Size: 13,61 MB
Format: PDF
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In A Nuclear Family Vacation, husband-and-wife journalists Nathan Hodge and Sharon Weinberger hit the road to explore the secretive world of nuclear weaponry. Weaving together first-class travel writing and crack investigative journalism, the pair pursues both adventures and answers: Why are nuclear weapons still on hair-trigger alert? Is there really such a thing as a suitcase nuke? And which nuclear power plants are most likely to be covers for weapons programs? Their itinerary takes them from the Semipalatinsk Test Site in Kazakhstan to the U.S.'s own top-secret "Site R," opening a unique perspective on the world's vast nuclear infrastructure and the international politics at play behind it.

Realizing Peace

Author: Louis Kriesberg
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190266422
Size: 17,97 MB
Format: PDF
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Early work in conflict resolution and peace research focused on why wars broke out, why they persisted, and why peace agreements failed to endure. Later research has focused on what actions and circumstances have actually averted destructive escalations, stopped the perpetuation of destructive conduct, produced a relatively good conflict transformation, or resulted in an enduring and relatively equitable relationship among former adversaries. This later research, which began in the 1950s, recognizes that conflict is inevitable and is often waged in the name of rectifying injustice. Additionally, it argues that damages can be minimized and gains maximized for various stakeholders in waging and settling conflicts. This theory, which is known as the constructive conflict approach, looks at how conflicts can be waged and resolved so they are broadly beneficial rather than mutually destructive. In this book, Louis Kriesberg, one of the major figures in the school of constructive conflict, looks at major foreign conflict episodes in which the United States has been involved since the onset of the Cold War to analyze when American involvement in foreign conflicts has been relatively effective and beneficial and when it has not. In doing so he analyzes whether the US took constructive approaches to conflict and whether the approach yielded better consequences than more traditional coercive approaches. Realizing Peace helps readers interested in engaging or learning about foreign policy to better understand what has happened in past American involvement in foreign conflicts, to think freshly about better alternatives, and to act in support of more constructive strategies in the future.

Mission Revolution

Author: Jennifer Morrison Taw
Editor: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231526822
Size: 13,83 MB
Format: PDF
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Defined as operations other than war, stability operations can include peacekeeping activities, population control, and counternarcotics efforts, and for the entire history of the United States military, they have been considered a dangerous distraction if not an outright drain on combat resources. Yet in 2005, the U.S. Department of Defense reversed its stance on these practices, a dramatic shift in the mission of the armed forces and their role in foreign and domestic affairs. With the elevation of stability operations, the job of the American armed forces is no longer just to win battles but to create a controlled, nonviolent space for political negotiations and accord. Yet rather than produce revolutionary outcomes, stability operations have resulted in a large-scale mission creep with harmful practical and strategic consequences. Jennifer Morrison Taw examines the military's sudden embrace of stability operations and its implications for American foreign policy and war. Through a detailed examination of deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, changes in U.S. military doctrine, adaptations in force preparation, and the political dynamics behind this new stance, Taw connects the preference for stability operations to the far-reaching, overly ambitious American preoccupation with managing international stability. She also shows how domestic politics have reduced civilian agencies' capabilities while fostering an unhealthy overreliance on the military. Introducing new concepts such as securitized instability and institutional privileging, Taw builds a framework for understanding and analyzing the expansion of the American armed forces' responsibilities in an ever-changing security landscape.

Economy Of Force

Author: Patricia Owens
Editor: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316390470
Size: 14,10 MB
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Retrieving the older but surprisingly neglected language of household governance, Economy of Force offers a radical new account of the historical rise of the social realm and distinctly social theory as modern forms of oikonomikos - the art and science of household rule. The techniques and domestic ideologies of household administration are highly portable and play a remarkably central role in international and imperial relations. In two late-colonial British 'emergencies' in Malaya and Kenya, and US counterinsurgencies in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq, armed social work was the continuation of oikonomia - not politics - by other means. This is a provocative new history of counterinsurgency with major implications for social, political and international theory. Historically rich and theoretically innovative, this book will interest scholars and students across the humanities and social sciences, especially politics and international relations, history of social and political thought, history of war, social theory and sociology.

Waging Peace

Author: Rob Schultheis
Editor: Gotham
ISBN: 9781592401277
Size: 13,72 MB
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Outlines the efforts of the Army's seven-member Civil Affairs units to rebuild conquered territories and earn the trust of local people in the face of often dangerous odds, describing the author's experiences of working with a Civil Affairs team in Baghdad to secure a local water supply, renovate hospitals, and survive insurgent attacks. 40,000 first printing.

The Politics Of Aid To Burma

Author: Anne Decobert
Editor: Routledge
ISBN: 1317517032
Size: 20,52 MB
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For over sixty years, conflict between state forces and armed ethnic groups was ongoing in parts of the borderlands of Burma. Ethnic minority communities were subjected to systematic and widespread abuses by an increasingly complex patchwork of armed state and non-state actors. Populations in more remote and disputed border areas typically had little to no access to even basic healthcare and education services. As part of its counter-insurgency campaign, the military state also historically restricted international humanitarian access to civilian populations in unstable border areas. It was in this context that "cross-border aid" to Burma had developed, as an alternative mechanism for channelling assistance to populations denied aid through more conventional systems. Yet by the late 2000s, national and international changes had significant impacts on an aid debate, which had important political and ethical implications. Through an ethnographic study of a cross-border aid organisation working on the Thailand-Burma border, this book focuses on the political and ethical dilemmas of "humanitarian government". It explores the ways in which aid systems come to be defined as legitimate or illegitimate, humanitarian or "un-humanitarian", in an international context that has witnessed the multiplication of often-conflicting humanitarian systems and models. It examines how an "embodied history" of violence can shape the worldviews and actions of local humanitarian actors, as well as institutions created to mitigate human suffering. It goes on to look at the complex and often-invisible webs of local organisations, international NGOs, donors, armed groups and other actors, which can develop in a cross-border and extra-legal context – a context where competing constructions of systems as legitimate or illegitimate are highlighted. Exploring the history of humanitarianism from the local aid perspective of Burma, this book will be of interest to students and scholars of Southeast Asian Studies, Anthropology of Humanitarian Aid and Development Studies.