Tag Archives: Afghanistan

2020 Global conflict & disorder patterns: “reactivated groups cause for heightened risk of mass violence in Ethiopia…”

21 Feb

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)

Editor’s Note:  Separately on Ethiopia since 2019, pls consult ACLED’s: [Ethiopia] At risk of increased fragmentation despite a popular leader)

 

by Clionadh Raleigh, ACLED Executive Director

Paper presented at the 2020 Munich Security Conference

There is a great range in how states and citizens experience security: in places like Mexico and Burundi, active and latent groups dominate the security environment, while in Iran, Turkey and Ukraine, the level of per capita civilian killing is low, but perpetrated by the same small range of state, and state-associated groups. In countries like Ethiopia and Pakistan, the possibility of high numbers of ‘re-activated’ groups mean that civilians are at a heightened risk of mass violence, should the political environment change suddenly.

In the past 10 years, the world has witnessed a decline in global cooperation and security. This downturn is manifest through multiple internationalized wars and massive humanitarian crises, rising nationalism from global powers, transnational terror organizations using sophisticated recruitment techniques, cyber-attacks orchestrated by marginalized states, sustained levels of violence in nominally ‘post-conflict’ countries, and a drastic rise in the number of non-state violent agents. An intensification of violence and risk has accompanied these notable shifts. Drawing on the ACLED dataset of almost a million political violence and protest events across over 100 countries, we can discern four broad patterns that summarize the current conflict landscape and indicate how disorder is likely to evolve in the future:

(1) Political violence is rising and manifesting as disorder in multiple forms. It is persistent and dynamic, consistently adapting to changing political circumstances and opportunities, rather than dissipating. For these reasons, it is best to understand political violence not as a failure of states, but as a volatile and flexible feature of political systems.

(2) Political violence is rising most quickly in developed states: Russia, Mexico and Turkey are key examples of how specific forms of political violence find an outlet in relatively wealthier states. Continued conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia and Afghanistan demonstrate the intractable nature of wars in states with inconsistent government control and capacity across territory. Conflict is most persistent in poorer states, but even in these environments, it is a tool of the powerful, rather than the poor and aggrieved.

(3) The fallout from many externally imposed peace-building and stabilization efforts, forced elections, and corruption is unprecedented levels of militia and gang violence. Rather than a descent into chaos, this trend is tied directly to the domestic politics of states and the economic benefits of conflict. The form and intensity of such conflict adapts to political competition within states. As a result, we should expect a continued rise in militias, gangs and violence across most states.

(4) Finally, demonstrations are increasing drastically — but most peaceful protests have no effect on political structures and elite politics. State security forces continue to intervene violently in protests, and mobs — often hired by politicians — are responsible for a significant and deadly increase of rioting in South Asia and beyond.

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How the Muslim world lost the freedom to choose

28 Oct

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
by Kim Ghattas, Carnegie Endowment for Int’ Peace

No aspect of culture was spared from the Islamization drive, as movie theaters were shut from Karachi to Peshawar, artists were driven underground and school curricula redesigned to create a “monolithic image of Pakistan as an Islamic state and taught students to view only Muslims as Pakistani citizens.”

When national security advisor H.R. McMaster wanted to convince U.S. President Donald Trump that Afghanistan was not hopeless, he whipped out a 1972 black-and-white picture of women in miniskirts on the streets of Kabul.
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US Impunity Erodes World Justice

26 Oct

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
by Nicolas J S Davies*, October 25, 2016
Consortium News
 

The International Criminal Court charges only Africans with human rights crimes while granting impunity to U.S. officials and their allies, undermining what had been a noble idea of universal justice, writes Nicolas J S Davies.

In the past week, Burundi and South Africa have joined Namibia in declaring their intention to withdraw from the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC). They are likely to be followed by a parade of other African countries, jeopardizing the future of an international court that has prosecuted 39 officials from eight African countries but has failed to indict a single person who is not African.
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The lesson of downing Malaysian air in Ukraine: Where the U.S. doesn’t fly

20 Jul

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)

Following the downing in eastern Ukraine of Malaysian passenger airlines, Flight 17, which was shot down on July 17 by separatist rebels, the US has issued flight advisories and prohibitions for 14 airspaces around the world, identifying countries by name. The concerned states are:
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