Volume 5, Issue 2: Spring/Summer 2010

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SPOTLIGHT ON SECURITY

Letter from the Editor

Jason Warner, Editor-in-Chief, and Mark Dietzen, Executive Director (2009-2010)

 

INTERVIEWS

The Evolution of American Security
An Interview with Ambassador John D. Negroponte

Ambassador John D. Negroponte is the Brady-Johnson Distinguished Senior Research Fellow in Grand Strategy and Lecturer in International Affairs at the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University. Ambassador Negroponte served as the first Director of National Intelligence from 2005–2007 and the Deputy Secretary of State from 2007–2009. He also served as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations between 2001 and 2004 and is a four-time ambassador to Honduras, Mexico, the Philippines, and Iraq.

Balancing Threat: The United States and the Middle East
An Interview with Stephen M. Walt

Stephen M. Walt is the Robert and Rene Belfer Professsor of International Relations at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government where he served as Academic Dean from 2002 to 2006. His most recent book, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (co-authored with John J. Mearsheimer and published in 2007), was a New York Times bestseller and has been translated into twenty foreign languages.

Putting People First: The Growing Influence of ‘Human Security’
An Interview with Mary Kaldor

Mary Kaldor is Professor and Co-director of Global Governance at the London School of Economics. Her books include New and Old Wars: Organized Violence in a Global Era (1999), Global Civil Society: An Answer to War (2003), and Human Security: Reflections on Globalization and Intervention (2007).

 

The Mexican Energy Sector’s Bumpy Road
A Conversation with President Vincente Fox

Vicente Fox served as the President of Mexico from 2000 to 2006 and is currently a co-President of the Centrist Democrat International (CDI), an international organization representing Christian democratic political parties.

ARTICLES

Security Challenges in the 21st Century Global Commons
By Tara Murphy

National security is no longer ensured solely by maintaining the sanctity of one’s borders, but is also highly dependent upon a state’s ability to navigate safely through the global commons: the sea, air, outer space, and cyberspace. In recognizing the growing importance of the commons, Tara Murphy investigates the contemporary challenges that the United States faces in formulating its policies in these four increasingly contested arenas.

Mind the “Gap”: Private Military Companies and the Rule of Law
By Mitchell McNaylor

Although U.S.-based private military companies (PMCs) are widely believed to operate outside of any legal framework, such an understanding is based on a perceived, rather than real gap in jurisdiction. Mitchell McNaylor details how recent attempts by the U.S. Congress to subject PMCs to more stringent legal measures are having unintended consequences that may undermine their ability to be effective agents of security assurance.

The Demographic Security Dilemma
By Christian Leuprecht

Why do minority populations often grow faster than majorities? States in dyadic conflict with a minority whose population growth exceeds that of the majority are prone to protective measures to bolster the majority’s grip on power. Under conditions of ethnic control, however, such measures appear to precipitate higher fertility rates among the minority. Christian Leuprecht develops the logic of a demographic security dilemma to account for this pervasive puzzle.

Globalizing Insecurity: The Convergence of Interdependent Ecological, Energy, and Economic Crises
By Nafeez Mossadeq Ahmed

The most urgent dangers to security today come not from terrorism, but from the convergence of global systemic crises, including those of climate change, hydrocarbon energy depletion, economic and financial breakdown, and plummeting food production. Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed argues for the necessity of recognizing the interdependence of these threats on the path towards re-conceptualizing the meaning of ‘security’ today.

Security and the Olympic Games: Making Rio an Example
By Samantha R. McRoskey

With the announcement that Rio de Janeiro will host the 2016 Olympic Games, global attention has turned to the city’s infamous history of insecurity. Samantha R. McRoskey analyzes the history and causes of the city’s insecurity, and argues that if the Games’ organizers are able to construct and execute a successful plan to ensure spectator safety, the result could be the incorporation of often overlooked developing states into the hosting circuit of the Olympic Games in the future.

Fighting Corruption to Improve Global Security: An Analysis of International Asset Recovery Systems
By Mark V. Vlasic and Jenae N. Noell

Typically not counted amongst the battles to be waged in the fight for global security, Mark V. Vlasic and Jenae N. Noell argue that stemming corruption through stolen asset recovery programs has the ability to fortify the rule of law and reduce state impunity in the developing world.

Frozen Transitions and Unfrozen Conflicts, Or What Went Wrong in Georgia?
By David Aphrasidze and David Siroky

David Aphrasidze and David Siroky analyze the dynamics of development, democracy and conflict in pre- and post-Rose Revolution Georgia, highlighting the nexus of ethnic nationalism, state capacity, and institution building as it relates to future insecurity in the state.

State Capacity as a Conceptual Variable
By Matthew Adam Kocher

State capacity has become a central concept in security studies. Matthew Adam Kocher argues that common uses of the concept to explain violent conflict are tautological and instead outlines several approaches to disaggregate the state analytically so as to lead to more rigorous empirical research on violence.

BOOK REVIEWS

Political Islam from Muhammad to Ahmadinejad: Defenders, Detractors, and Definitions
By Joseph Morrison Skelly

Reviewed by Hannah Elka Meyers

The Empire of Civilization: The Evolution of an Imperial Idea
By Brett Bowden

Reviewed by Joshua Simon

OP-EDS

The Transformed Global Threat Environment
By John Gannon

Understanding the myriad of evolving challenges facing the U.S. intelligence community

Why U.S. Power Does Not Deter Challenges
By Nuno Monteiro

How U.S. foreign policy could be more effective through more credible assurances for compliance

Rape is Not Inevitable in War
By Elisabeth J. Wood

Analyzing wars where sexual violence is rare to help combat sexual violence in the future

Blackwater’s Rise and the Draft’s Demise
By Joseph P. Vasquez, III

The dangers of private military contractors and possibilities for stemming their growth

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