Searched the resource database for : All Results AND Regions=Oceania
Haven't found what you are looking for? To further refine your search: Click on the 'advanced search' menu to filter by title, abstract, source, and/or publication date; to include or exclude multiple resource categories, regions or topics.
Abstract: The Examples from the Ground are concrete illustrations of ways in which a gender perspective has been integrated in different security sector institutions around the world. They range from measures to counter human trafficking in Kosovo, to women’s organisations’ involvement with security institutions in Nepal, to female parliamentarians’ contribution to post-conflict reconstruction in Rwanda. These examples can help policymakers, trainers and educators better understand and demonstrate the linkages between gender and SSR.
The examples are organised around the following nine themes, for which a short introduction is provided:
• Police Reform and Gender
• Defence Reform and Gender
• Justice Reform and Gender
• Penal Reform and Gender
• Border Management and Gender
• Parliamentary Oversight of the Security Sector and Gender
• National Security Policy-Making and Gender
• Civil Society Oversight of the Security Sector and Gender
• SSR Assessment, Monitoring and Evaluation and Gender
Individual examples can also be downloaded individually, in English or in French, at: http://gssrtraining.ch/index.php?option=com_content&view;=article&id;=4&Itemid;=131〈=en
Abstract: A heated debate was initiated in 1989 when Francis Fukuyama published
his immediately famous essay “The End of History?” in which the author
argued that the world had settled for liberal democracy after the end of
the Cold War: “What we may be witnessing is not just the end of the Cold
War, or the passing of a particular period of postwar history, but the end
of history as such: that is, the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution
and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of
human government.” The ensuing debate saw arguments for and against
Fukuyama’s thesis. Some ridiculed his arguments as they – maybe deliberately
– misinterpreted him and made him a strawman for the argument
that events will stop occurring in the future; others took his reasoning seriously
and adopted his ideas as a starting-point for penetrating analyses
of modern history. If interpreted literally, however, the “end of history”
thesis was hollow already when Fukuyama wrote it. History as we know
it is a constant flow with no particular beginning and no particular end,
but “history” is nevertheless used to denote a certain period or a particular
chain of events.
Considerations brought to the fore by the debate over Fukuyama’s
essay were pertinent for the conference “Security and Development in
Asia: New Threats and Challenges in the Post-Postwar Era” that took
place on June 2–3, 2008, organized by the Institute for Security and Development
Policy (ISDP). As the title of the conference indicates, the geographical
focus was Asia. This geographical entity is often written about
as being a homogenous region. To use the concept of “region” for this part of the world is questionable, however. Asia is vast, stretching as it does
from Japan to the Middle East, and from the Arctic to the Indian and the
Pacific Oceans. To point out that Asia is an area in flux, characterized by
diversity and heterogeneity, verges on a prosaic observation. It is not easy
to come to grips with the bewildering array of historical legacies, colonial
imprints, regional disputes, and developmental disparities. It is also commonplace,
but nonetheless equally important, to point out that interdependence
and globalization have made an imprint. While Asia encompasses
a large portion of the earth’s surface, interdependence and globalization
reduce the distance between countries and nations, peoples and
individuals, friends and foes, serving to cause frictions and contentions as
well as promoting mutual interests. To suspicions and fears based on lingering
memories of a history marked by wars and conflict have been added
disputes stemming from religious and ethnic factors, increasing nationalism,
and unequal economic development, among others. It is no exaggeration
to say that security threats and challenges seen as pertinent for
Asia are relevant also in a global context, with events and developments
on that continent having repercussions elsewhere.
Abstract: This study was commissioned by the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) Afghanistan Working Group (AWG) to provide a clearer overview of the key aid modalities used by the Australian Government in Afghanistan. Particular attention was paid to aid delivered by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), and the Australian Defence Force (ADF) as part of its counterinsurgency efforts in Uruzgan Province. The study was carried out from May – July 2010.
Australia’s engagement in Afghanistan dates largely from 11 September 2001. Prior to this and dating back to 1994, the Australian aid portfolio was minimal and ADF involvement was limited to mine clearance activities through the United Nations. After 9/11, and due to its role as major non-North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) ally and an ally of the US increased significantly in 2006 with the deployment of ADF personnel to Uruzgan Province to support both military and stabilization/reconstruction efforts.
Currently Australia supports the revised Obama Administration’s strategy for Afghanistan that has seen a strategic shift in military command of NATO-International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), with a changed emphasis and the direction of military operations towards a counter-insurgency (COIN) ‘clear, hold and build’ campaign. The central principle in COIN strategy is to protect the population, reverse the Talban’s momentum and create the space to develop security and governance capacity in Afghanistan.
Abstract: The international security implications of failed and failing states are profound. To achieve stability requires a commitment from the international community to rebuild the host state and avert future conflict. Thus, successful stability operations require a long-term civil-military commitment, as evidenced by lessons from events following World War II and the Korean War. Smith and Shrimpton highlight key lessons from historical and recent nationbuilding interventions in nonpermissive environments, and urge Australia to give higher priority to preemptive strategies that help prevent conflict, and to holistic approaches that build sustainable stability. The authors argue that Australia's primary efforts should remain focused on its nearer geographic region, capitalizing on the interests, relationships, and benefits that proximity offers. This strategic approach to nationbuilding would enhance international security and reduce the prospects of international conflict in the Pacific region while strengthening Australia's contribution to regional stability.
Abstract: The 94-page report, "Gold's Costly Dividend: Human Rights Impacts of Papua New Guinea's Porgera Gold Mine," identifies systemic failures on the part of Toronto-based Barrick Gold that kept the company from recognizing the risk of abuses, and responding to allegations that abuses had occurred. The report examines the impact of Canada's failure to regulate the overseas activities of its companies and also calls on Barrick to address environmental and health concerns around the mine with greater transparency.
"We interviewed women who described brutal gang rapes by security guards at Barrick's mine," said Chris Albin-Lackey, senior business and human rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. "The company should have acted long before Human Rights Watch conducted its research and prompted them into action".
Abstract: This case study examines contemporary experiences of conflict in four contexts: Papua New Guinea, with particular reference to the island of Bougainville and the Highlands region; Solomon Islands; and Vanuatu. We find common themes in these experiences, despite the region’s famous socio-linguistic diversity, fragmented geography and varied experience of globalisation. Melanesia offers distinctive lessons about how conflict may be understood, promoted and avoided. The paper is organized in two broad parts.
The first part is contextual. It provides a brief account of conflict and violence in social life before and after colonization. It then tracks, largely chronologically, through the local, national and transnational dimensions of contemporary conflict, how it was avoided, how it has changed, and how it has been managed in different contexts. Particular attention is given to global and regional influences, and to how governments, local people, and external security, development and commercial actors, have worked to mitigate and, at times, exacerbate conflict.
The second part of the case study is more analytical. It steps back from the particulars to address themes and propositions in the overall conceptual framing of WDR 2011 about the nature of conflict, and the underlying stresses and interests that may render it more likely. Part II draws lessons from the histories and contexts discussed in Part 1. We organize these around three themes thatreflect views shared with us by people during consultations. The first highlights the need to recognize conflict as an inherent part of social change and thus the need to distinguish between socially generative social contest, and forms of conflict that are corrosive and destructive. The second examines how the way people ‘see’ and understand the world directly shapes systems of regulation and ‘the rules of the game’ and thus directly affect responses to conflict. The third theme argues that capable and legitimate institutions to regulate social contest requires not just capable state institutions, but as much, relationships with local and international agents and organizations operating below and above the state.
Abstract: This brief presents the progress to date in developing
a typology of wartime rape as a first step toward
understanding the different consequences of this form
of violence in war. This publication focuses solely on
wartime rape perpetrated by armed groups against
civilians, though this form of violence is perpetrated
more widely by, and against, different actors during
war. The wider perpetration of rape against other
actors is not presented in this brief, but is nevertheless
included in the Typology. The Typology is a product of
two phases of research: a) an initial phase (November
2008–May 2009) where a preliminary typology was
created based on an examination of two country
cases of wartime rape: Bosnia and Herzegovina,
and El Salvador; and b) a second phase (September
2009–May 2010) where the typology was refined
according to data collected from a review of the
literature on ten additional country cases of wartime
rape (Cambodia, Colombia, Democratic Republic
of the Congo, Liberia, Nepal, Papua New Guinea/
Bougainville, Peru, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Timor Leste).
The Typology was designed on the basis of a definition
of wartime, which includes a myriad of war dynamics
that surround and influence the perpetration of
rape, and which can be organized into the following
type of conflict in which wartime rape occurs;
characteristics of the armed group;
motivations for the rape;
characteristics of the rapist;
characteristics of the raped person; and
characteristics of the rape.
Abstract: A total of 88 270 personnel were deployed to nine peace operations in Asia
in 2009, more personnel than in any other region (see table 1). For the fourth
year running Asia had the biggest relative increase in personnel of any
region—a 59 per cent rise from 55 542 in 2008. The increase was due to the
con tinued expansion of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
in Afghanistan, led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). ISAF,
accounting for 95 per cent of the deployments to Asia in 2009, was nearly four
times the size of the next largest operation (the UN Organization Mission
in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, MONUC, with 21 515 person nel).
ISAF’s force strength of 84 146 troops in 2009 exceeded the total number
of troops sent to peace missions in Africa and was also higher than the total
number of troops deployed to United Nations missions.
Abstract: Domestic public opinion is frequently and correctly described as a crucial battlefront in the war in Afghanistan. Commentary by media and political figures currently notes not only the falling support for the war in the United States but also in many of its key allies in Europe and elsewhere, making it all the more difficult for the Obama administration to secure the help it believes it needs to bring the war to a successful conclusion. This study is an extensive examination of the determinants of domestic support for and opposition to the war in Afghanistan in the United States and in five of its key allies--the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Canada, and Australia. Tracing the trajectory of public opinion on the war from the original invasion in 2001 to the fall of 2009, this paper concludes that the combination of mounting casualties with a declining belief that the war could be won by the Coalition is the key factor driving the drop in support. Other factors, such as the deployment of numerous and shifting rationales by the political leadership in various countries, and the breakdown of elite consensus have played important but secondary roles in this process.
Abstract: In a new Lowy Institute Perspective, West Asia Program Director Anthony Bubalo explores two major changes that are creating a new Middle East: the end of American hegemony; and the economic and strategic reconnection of the Middle East to Asia. Bubalo explores some of the implications of this shift for Australian international policy, against the background of continuing community ambivalence toward the Middle East and to those issues that are part of the Middle East security equation, most notably, Afghanistan. The ‘New Middle East’ is a title with an unhappy history.
In 1993, Shimon Peres, then Israeli Foreign Minister and now Israeli President, declared that
peace would be the foundation for a dramatic regional transformation. A ‘New
Middle East’, he argued, could be built upon a web of economic, cultural and scientific links
spun across the region.
His vision barely survived the scepticism of his fellow Israelis and the suspicions of the
Arabs. Ultimately, Peres’ vision of a ‘New Middle East’ perished where it began. The
demise of IsraeliPalestinian
put an end to any dreams of IsraeliArab
In 2006, then US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, used the term in reference to another
project for regional transformation. Defending charges of American inaction in the IsraeliLebanon
war of that year, she argued that the United States was not interested preserving an
unhappy status quo. What the world was witnessing in the Lebanon war, Rice promised, was
‘the birth pangs of a New Middle East’. She was, of course, referring to the Bush Administration’s ambitious project for a democratic
revolution in the region, which it kicked off by invading Iraq. But Bush’s vision proved as
stillborn as Peres’. In coming years Iraq may well emerge as a reasonably stable and
relatively democratic state, but not in any way that people in the region will be clamouring to
emulate. Even if one does not have a grand scheme of change in mind it is wise, therefore, to be
cautious about predicting change in the Middle East. Nevertheless, I do believe we are on the
threshold of two major, closely related changes in the region: the end of US hegemony and
the Middle East’s reconnection with the rest of Asia.
Abstract: The Netherlands Ministry of Defence (NL MOD) commissioned RAND Europe to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the Netherlands armed forces, asking RAND to focus on recent deployments of the Netherlands armed forces relative to the deployments of other countries' armed forces. This study is therefore not a root and branch consideration of the Netherlands armed forces, but a comparative study of several different armed forces to illustrate contrasts and similarities with those of the Netherlands. This study was conducted within the context of the NL MOD's Future Policy Survey, which is a review of the Netherlands' future defence ambition, required capabilities and associated levels of defence expenditure. The Future Policy Survey was delivered to the Netherlands Parliament in April 2010. The overarching aim of the Dutch Future Policy Survey is to provide greater insight into how to exploit and enhance the potential contribution of the Netherlands armed forces.
Abstract: The Asia Pacific has experienced thirty years without interstate
conflict, but a number of long-running, low-level
internal conflicts continue in Southeast Asia, and several
South Pacific states have recent experience of instability.
Tensions also remain at the inter-state level, and shifting
power dynamics between the US, China, and other Asian
states have the potential to foster regional instability. In
addition, a raft of transnational threats, such as resource
scarcity and climate change, are creating new uncertainty. Given the host of challenges, the limited conflict
prevention role played by international and regional
institutions in Southeast Asia and the South Pacific is at
first glance surprising. A review of operational conflict
prevention efforts in Southeast Asia and the South Pacific
shows that while international organizations – particularly
the United Nations – and regional organizations perform
some conflict prevention roles in the region, these remain
circumscribed. The constraints upon them stem from the
importance of sovereignty in the region, but they also have
historical, institutional, and political underpinnings. As a
result, regional crisis management has involved a variety
of other actors, including states and NGOs, and multiactor
mechanisms have assumed a particular prominence. Structural prevention initiatives have been less constrained
in the Asia Pacific, with a plethora of actors, again including
the UN, using statebuilding and development tools to
build state resilience, manage transnational threats, and
avert violence.2 The region also has a number of networks
and confidence-building processes, which round out its
conflict prevention framework.
Abstract: Afghan civilians deserve amends from warring parties for deaths, injuries, and property
losses—that is, some form of recognition and monetary compensation. Under international
law and agreements signed with the Afghan government, the troop contributing nations
(TCNs) of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are not liable for damage to
civilian property or civilian injury or death as a result of lawful operations. However, most
ISAF members now offer payments when such losses occur. This is a marked improvement
from the early days of the conflict when the US and its NATO allies declined to address civilian
harm. CIVIC’s research into the experiences of ISAF troops and Afghan civilians demonstrates that
when international military forces provide payment (henceforth called “compensation” to
indicate both monetary and in-kind help), especially combined with an apology for harm,
civilian hostility toward international forces decreases. However, the effectiveness of these
payments has been limited by the lack of uniform policies across ISAF nations, limited information
gathering about civilian harm generally and, in many cases, insensitive requirements
that civilians suffering losses take the initiative to file claims.
This report describes the policies and practices of major ISAF TCNs. It finds that soldiers as
well as civilians view amends for harm favorably. The process of investigation, negotiation
of payment, and offers of formal compensation are opportunities to strengthen relationships
with local leaders and communities, to explain what happened, and acknowledge loss.
Abstract: This is the third in a series of backgrounders the NEFA Foundation has published on extremist ideologues that take a close look at the personalities, doctrine, scope of influence, and methods of communication of some of the most influential purveyors of radical Islamist ideology to English-speaking audiences. As U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies become increasingly concerned about homegrown terrorism at a time when Al-Qaida is actively encouraging American Muslims to commit terrorist acts, understanding the sources of radicalization becomes an essential component of combating the threat. Here, we profile Feiz Muhammad (a.k.a. Feiz Mohammad, Sheik Feiz), an Australian citizen now residing in Malaysia, who has been labeled Australia’s “most dangerous sheikh” due to the number of connections he has to known and suspected terrorists.
Muhammad’s target audience is young Muslims worldwide who feel disaffected and disassociated from local Muslim communities, where mosque clerics show “a lack of interest toward the youth.” His lectures frame the United States as the enemy of all Muslims, including those living in the United States and in other Western countries. Al Qaida’s message is reinforced by radical Islamist figures like Feiz Muhammad, who continually frames the U.S. as the enemy of Muslims, including those who live in the United States. In addition, he calls on Muslims to participate in armed jihad. Muhammad is already perceived as credible by his audience. His credibility will likely rise as he continues to pursue an education in Islam in Malaysia, where he resides currently, and his following will also likely continue to grow as increasing numbers of English-speaking Muslims are exposed to his lectures via the internet.
Abstract: Do sanctions, incentives and conditionality support or undermine the peace process?
This edition of Accord assesses whether these instruments can persuade conflict
parties to engage in peacemaking. Used effectively, these tools can tip the balance
towards a settlement by increasing the costs of fighting and rewarding peace. But
unless developed as part of a coherent and strategic approach to peacemaking they
can be ineffective and have sometimes exacerbated tensions and fuelled conflict.
Sanctions, incentives and conditionality must be responsive to parties’ own
motivations and support pre-existing conditions for conflict resolution. Four overriding conclusions can be drawn from this
study for how to enhance the effectiveness of external
influence in support of peacemaking. (1) External actors
need to prioritize support for sustainable peace as their
primary goal in a conflict situation and craft their
strategy to help achieve it – recognizing that this may, in
turn, create the enabling conditions for achieving other
foreign policy goals. (2) Sanctions, incentives and
conditionality are most likely to be effective when they
are responsive to the parties’ own motivational
structures and support a pre-existing societal dynamic
for conflict resolution. (3) They need to be designed and
implemented in ways that help to create momentum in
the resolution process, which (4) typically requires a degree of strategic coherence amongst external actors,
necessitating mechanisms for coordination.
Abstract: Australia’s current role in Afghanistan is the latest experience in a long history of involvement in counterinsurgency conflicts or ‘small wars’. Australia needs to worry a little less about the small problems it has with big wars, and address some of the big problems that it has with small wars. Small wars, such as insurgencies, became the most prevalent form of conflict globally in the middle of the 20th century. The 2009 Australian Defence White Paper predicts that intrastate conflict will remain the most common form of war in the period to 2030. Australia has a long record of involvement in such conflicts, although participation has always been a matter of choice. But the fact that these are wars of choice for Australia, and that it frequently only plays a bit part, does not mean that they are insignificant in cost and political impact. And history demonstrates that small wars of choice can become wars of necessity. Australia’s interest as a democratic middle power that chooses to engage in counterinsurgency conflicts requires the development of sound strategic policy approaches and capabilities to defeat the insurgency Hydra. Despite this, the focus of Australia’s national strategic policies has remained on conventional, interstate warfare. Examples from Australian experience highlight the difficulties that arise from adopting a primarily tactical approach to counterinsurgency and the enduring nature of counterinsurgency as a policy problem. Insurgency itself is not a tactical action — it is a holistic strategy, aimed at a political outcome. So countering insurgency must be a strategic action, irrespective of whether carried out by a host nation or a middle power acting as a member of a coalition. This paper identifies five effective ways for a democratic middle power such as Australia to conduct counterinsurgency: population focus, an indirect approach, pre-emption, information activities and the use of adaptive measures. These provide a framework for the development of an appropriate counterinsurgency strategy for Australia’s circumstances.
Abstract: In the late 1990s, violence erupted between Guadalcanalese and Malaitan citizens on the main island of Guadalcanal. At the root of
the conflict was the anger felt by some Guadalcanal leaders over what they considered to be unfair land policies. Rival militias were formed
and by 1998 the country dissolved into violence. The Isatabu Freedom Movement, ostensibly representing the Guadalcanalese, forced
approximately 20,000 Malaitans off Guadalcanal Island. In 2000, after the failure of several reconciliation ceremonies, the Malaitan Eagle
Force abducted Prime Minister Bartholomew Ulufa'alu and forced him to resign for failing to respond adequately to this violence.
The Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) arrived in 2003, having been formally requested by the Governor‐
General. RAMSI has had a profound effect in shaping the Solomon Islands' recent history, as it has focused on stabilizing the country by
improving governance. However, there remains a moderate potential for the re‐emergence of violent conflict due to a number of factors
including: failure to adequately address the root causes of the 1998‐2003 conflict, an unstable and ineffective government, an unsustainable
economy, the effects of climate change and natural disasters, poor human development, demographic stress, and the lack of a clear exit
strategy for RAMSI. The country lacks the capacity to effectively deal with economic and environmental crises, and left unchecked this has
the strong potential to result in renewed violent conflict.
Abstract: In the last couple of decades, debate within the international community and the Pacific has centred on the challenges posed to socio-economic and political development by insecurity and conflict. This focus has also resulted in a shifting understanding of security, which now includes the safety and well-being of people and communities as well as the security of the state.
The Pacific, like other regions, is dealing with a difficult and diverse set of law enforcement, governance and security challenges. The region has witnessed violent conflict, civil unrest and political crises. This has led to a growing recognition of the critical role of law enforcement agencies and security institutions. However, in recent years, there have been concerns that these institutions lack capacity to meet the challenge of providing security to the general public; that governments do not have the necessary civilian security expertise to manage them; that legislatures are not empowered to oversee them; and that security forces are not held accountable under the law for their actions. Effective governance of security institutions is vital for the Pacific region. In the context of conflict and violence, it supports the efforts of state institutions to stabilize the security situation, begin the road to recovery and reduce the potential of relapse. In non-conflict contexts, it ensures security institutions fulfil their mandate to combat insecurity. This creates an enabling environment for poverty reduction and sustainable development.
Abstract: Between April and July 2009, police officers
raided villages in the highlands of Papua
New Guinea, forcibly evicting people from
their homes, burning down houses and
destroying their belongings, gardens and
livestock. These incidents took place in the
“special mining lease” (SML) area within
which the Porgera Joint Venture (PJV)
operates one of the largest mines in the
The area most affected by the police raids
was Wuangima, which is situated next to
the underground mining operations of the
Porgera mine. Wuangima had long been
occupied by families from three sub-clans –
the Uape, Lakima and Wangalo sub-clans.
Adult residents had been born and raised in
the area and had been raising their own
families in houses in Wuangima at the time
of the police raids. Those who lost their
homes included families with young
children, pregnant women, elderly people
and employees of PJV. Other villages within
the SML area also faced violence, including
Kulapi and Mungalep.
On 11 May 2009, Amnesty International
issued a public statement expressing
concern for the human rights of those
affected by the police activity. It called for
immediate action to stop the forced
evictions, remedy the violations that had
occurred and prevent further human rights
abuses. Between 18 August 2009 and
2 October 2009, Amnesty International
conducted further investigations into the
human rights situation of those affected by
the police brutality. Amnesty International
visited Porgera, inspected the burned
remains of houses and spoke to many of
the people directly affected by the forced
evictions, including villagers who had
previously occupied the area. Amnesty
International also interviewed police
officials, other government officers,
medical personnel, politicians, religious
leaders, landowners, women leaders, and
other community members.
Abstract: There has been a shift in discussions about security, away
from national security and towards greater emphasis on human
security. This shift requires governments to recognise the
importance of placing human beings and not states, at the
centre of security concerns. In recent years the links between
development, human security and armed violence have been
explored actively by national and international agencies, non
government organisations and the United Nations. The interest
has been driven, on the one hand, by the need to ensure
sustainable development programmes in areas threatened by
armed violence, and, on the other hand, by the realisation that
effective control of armed violence depends, in part, on
supportive development programming.
Armed violence has a deleterious effect on development and is
a core source of instability and human security. Where gun
violence is a daily reality, policymakers, bureaucrats and
analysts often fail to understand precisely how men, women
and children are differently affected, the multiplier effects of
insecurity on the wider community and how individuals
develop local solutions to their problems. Many countries are
already saturated with weapons and ammunition, and
controlling new transfers of weapons is not enough. Arms
work should be concerned not only with the weapons
themselves, but with structural factors, such as the socioeconomic
root causes of armed violence and the need for nonviolent
alternatives to gun-based livelihoods.
Abstract: The planned withdrawal of Netherlands forces
from Oruzgan in mid-2010 raises questions
about who will replace the Dutch as lead
nation in the province and about the fragile
stability that has been built there by the Dutch
and the Australians. President Obama’s
announcement raises further questions about
the number and role of Australian forces in
Afghanistan and about Australia’s civil and
diplomatic contributions to the stabilisation of
Afghanistan and its broader region. US President Obama’s decision to dispatch
30,000 additional troops to the war in
Afghanistan, announced in a speech to the
West Point military academy on 1 December,
has echoes of former President Bush’s own
surge of 20,000 troops to Iraq in 2007. Like
the surge in Iraq, Obama’s surge seeks to turn
around a losing war, or rather to demonstrate
that it is still ultimately winnable.
Abstract: As agreed by Member States at the 2005 World Summit, the Responsibility to Protect (R2P)
rests on three pillars: the responsibility of the State to protect its own population from
genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity; the duty of the
international community to provide States with assistance and capacity-building; and the
international community’s responsibility to take timely and decisive action, in accordance with
Chapters VI, VII and VIII of the UN Charter, in cases where the State is manifestly failing in its
responsibility to protect. Of the three pillars, the measures that States, regional and sub-regional arrangements and
the UN might take to exercise their pillar two responsibilities are least well understood. The
range of possible assistance that might be provided to State extends from small scale
bilateral partnerships relating to technical matters, to different forms of targeted development
assistance, to comprehensive and multifaceted assistance arrangements. The key thing that
unites all of these measures is that they involve partnerships and require the express
invitation of the host State. In short, pillar two activities are primarily concerned with assisting
the State to exercise its responsibility to protect. By doing so, pillar two actively strengthens
the State and its sovereignty. In the past decade, there has been a flourishing of global
partnerships aimed at strengthening States. Much of this activity make a direct contribution to
helping States exercise their R2P and should therefore be properly understood as pillar two
This case study report briefly considers one such example – the Regional Assistance Mission
to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI).
Abstract: In July 2009, the UN General Assembly held an Interactive Informal Dialogue and plenary session on the Responsibility to Protect (RtoP). The dialogue provided the first opportunity for the UN membership as a whole to discuss implementation of the 2005 World Summit’s commitment to the RtoP and the UN Secretary-General’s report on the matter. Fifteen governments from the Asia-Pacific region, namely Indonesia, the Philippines, Korea, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Japan, China, Vietnam, Solomon Islands, Myanmar, Timor-Leste, DPRK, PNG and Malaysia, participated in the dialogue. This culminated in a resolution co-sponsored by, inter alia, Australia, Fiji, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, Republic of Korea, Timor-Leste and New Zealand that noted the Secretary-General’s report, observed the fruitfulness of the interactive dialogue, and committed the Assembly to further consideration of the RtoP.
According to the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, one of the most significant aspects of the dialogue was the positive transformation of attitudes towards the RtoP within the Asia-Pacific region. Having previously been considered the region most opposed to the RtoP, the region now boasts near unanimity in its endorsement of the principle and the Secretary-General’s efforts towards its implementation (with the exception of North Korea).
Abstract: Governments in the Asia-Pacific are often referred to as skeptics or spoilers in conversations about deepening and harnessing global consensus on the „Responsibility to Protect‟ (R2P). This working paper argues that, on the contrary, there exists a broad constituency within the region for moving the principle from rhetoric to reality at the United Nations (UN). Based on contributions to Security Council debates on the protection of civilians in armed conflict (POC), regional states have been both receptive to and promoters of tangible measures to operationalise institutional mechanisms to prevent and halt mass atrocity crimes. Statements in the two most recent meetings are of particular significance given that they represent one of the last opportunities to gauge regional positions ahead of the forthcoming General Assembly debate on the R2P. In conclusion, I suggest that the Asia-Pacific region is much more receptive to the R2P principle than has hitherto been acknowledged. The first section of the working paper walks through the development of the R2P principle and the history of the UN Security Council's thematic interest in POC. The subsequent section unpacks and clarifies the relationship between the R2P and POC. The paper then proceeds to analyse the contributions of Asia-Pacific states to the two lattermost Council debates on POC, emphasising the significance of these statements for the institutional future of the R2P at the UN, as well as normative traction and increased ownership of the R2P in and by the region. Finally, the paper concludes by recommending the way ahead if Asia-Pacific states are to remain constructive partners in moving the principle towards praxis.
Abstract: The decision by the Australian Government on 21 August 2009 to officially
list the al-Shabaab group as a terrorist organisation highlights a subject of
growing concern in many Western governments: what is the danger posed
by the Somali-based group, and is it merely a regional actor? The question
is one of growing salience as stories increasingly surface of young Western
(or Westernised) men leaving their homes to fight and train with the Islamic
warriors in Somalia. Furthermore, the growing parallels with the 'chain of
terror' that British Prime Minister Gordon Brown highlighted, emanating
from Pakistan's lawless provinces through Europe's Muslim communities,
mean fears are growing that it might result in a terrorist attack on the scale
of the Madrid or London bombings.
This article outlines the growing sense of apparent threat in the West from
networks linked in some way to al-Shabaab. It offers some brief thoughts
on the growing links between what are herein termed 'the Shabaab
networks' and whether the threat from them is one than can be paralleled
with the threat from the similarly structured al-Qaeda networks.