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Shooting Up

Author: Vanda Felbab-Brown
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 9780815704508
Size: 79.16 MB
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Most policymakers see counterinsurgency and counternarcotics policy as two sides of the same coin. Stop the flow of drug money, the logic goes, and the insurgency will wither away. But the conventional wisdom is dangerously wrongheaded, as Vanda Felbab-Brown argues in Shooting Up. Counternarcotics campaigns, particularly those focused on eradication, typically fail to bankrupt belligerent groups that rely on the drug trade for financing. Worse, they actually strengthen insurgents by increasing their legitimacy and popular support. Felbab-Brown, a leading expert on drug interdiction efforts and counterinsurgency, draws on interviews and fieldwork in some of the world's most dangerous regions to explain how belligerent groups have become involved in drug trafficking and related activities, including kidnapping, extortion, and smuggling. Shooting Up shows vividly how powerful guerrilla and terrorist organizations — including Peru's Shining Path, the FARC and the paramilitaries in Colombia, and the Taliban in Afghanistan — have learned to exploit illicit markets. In addition, the author explores the interaction between insurgent groups and illicit economies in frequently overlooked settings, such as Northern Ireland, Turkey, and Burma. While aggressive efforts to suppress the drug trade typically backfire, Shooting Up shows that a laissez-faire policy toward illicit crop cultivation can reduce support for the belligerents and, critically, increase cooperation with government intelligence gathering. When combined with interdiction targeting major traffickers, this strategy gives policymakers a better chance of winning both the war against the insurgents and the war on drugs.

Aspiration And Ambivalence

Author: Vanda Felbab-Brown
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 0815724411
Size: 70.69 MB
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After more than a decade of great effort and sacrifice by America and its allies, the Taliban still has not been defeated, and many Afghans believe that a civil war is coming.Aspiration and Ambivalence analyzes the U.S. and international efforts in Afghanistan and offers detailed recommendations for dealing with the precarious situation leading up to the 2014 transition to Afghan control and beyond. Vanda Felbab-Brown argues that allied efforts in Afghanistan have put far too little emphasis on good governance, concentrating too much on short-term military goals to the detriment of long-term peace and stability. The Western tendency to ally with bullies, warlords, smugglers, and other shady characters in pursuit of short-term military advantage actually empowers the forces working against good governance and long-term political stability. Rampant corruption and mafia rule thus persist, making it impossible for Afghans to believe in the institutional reforms and rule of law that are clearly necessary. This must change-- otherwise, the chances of building responsive and sustainable governmental structures are slim, indeed. Felbab-Brown combines thorough research and analysis with vivid personal accounts of her time spent in the war-torn nation--powerful vignettes illustrating the Afghan aspirations for peace, stability, and sovereignty and the stubborn obstacles to securing them. "The year 2014 will mark a critical juncture in Afghanistan's odyssey. After more than a decade of arduous fighting and political involvement, the U.S. and international presence there will be significantly reduced and circumscribed. Although the international community has committed itself not to abandon Afghanistan as it did in the 1990s, the onus will be on the Afghan government to provide for the security of the country, its economic development, and governance that attempts to meet the needs of the Afghan people. Difficult challenges, major unresolved questions, and worrisome trends surround all three sets of processes. The biggest hole in the U.S. strategy and international efforts to stabilize the country is the failure to adequately address the country's fractured and brittle political system and very poor governance."--fromAspiration and Ambivalence

The Border Challenge

Author: T. Michael Andrews
Publisher: University Press of America
ISBN: 0761857095
Size: 58.66 MB
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This book presents an insider’s view of the federal government’s dual mission to stop the flow of illegal drugs across our borders and to prevent streams of drug money from financing drug cartels, insurgents, and terrorists. Andrews focuses on current challenges facing federal drug enforcement agencies.

The Wall

Author: Vanda Felbab-Brown
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 0815732953
Size: 49.63 MB
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In her Brookings Essay, The Wall, Brookings Senior Fellow Vanda Felbab-Brown explains the true costs of building a barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border, including (but not limited to) the estimated $12 to $21.6 billion price tag of construction. Felbab-Brown explains the importance of the United States’ relationship with Mexico, on which the U.S. relies for cooperation on security, environmental, agricultural, water-sharing, trade, and drug smuggling issues. The author uses her extensive on-the-ground experience in Mexico to illustrate the environmental and community disruption that the construction of a wall would cause, while arguing that the barrier would do nothing to stop illicit flows into the United States. She recalls personal interviews she has had with people living in border areas, including a woman whose family relies on remittances from the U.S., a teenager trying to get out of a local gang, and others.

Beyond The Eagle S Shadow

Author: Virginia Garrard-Burnett
Publisher: UNM Press
ISBN: 082635369X
Size: 48.38 MB
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The dominant tradition in writing about U.S.–Latin American relations during the Cold War views the United States as all-powerful. That perspective, represented in the metaphor “talons of the eagle,” continues to influence much scholarly work down to the present day. The goal of this collection of essays is not to write the United States out of the picture but to explore the ways Latin American governments, groups, companies, organizations, and individuals promoted their own interests and perspectives. The book also challenges the tendency among scholars to see the Cold War as a simple clash of “left” and “right.” In various ways, several essays disassemble those categories and explore the complexities of the Cold War as it was experienced beneath the level of great-power relations.

Children Of The Drug War

Author: Damon Barrett
Publisher: IDEA
ISBN: 9781617700187
Size: 11.91 MB
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Book Description: A unique collection of original essays that investigates the impacts of the war on drugs on children and young people. With contributions from around the world and utilizing a wide range of styles and approaches including ethnographic studies, personal accounts and interviews, the book asks three fundamental questions: What have been the costs to children of the war on drugs? Is the protection of children from drugs a solid justification for current policies? What kinds of public fears and preconceptions exist in relation to drugs and the drug trade?

An Intimate War

Author: Mike Martin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019023802X
Size: 22.99 MB
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An Intimate War tells the story of the last thirty-four years of conflict in Helmand Province, Afghani- stan as seen through the eyes of the Helmandis. In the West, this period is often defined through different lenses - the Soviet intervention, the civil war, the Taliban, and the post-2001 nation-building era. Yet, as experienced by local inhabitants, the Helmand conflict is a perennial one, involving the same individuals, families and groups, and driven by the same arguments over land, water and power. This book - based on both military and re- search experience in Helmand and 150 inter- views in Pashto - offers a very different view of Helmand from those in the media. It demonstrates how outsiders have most often misunderstood the ongoing struggle in Helmand and how, in doing so, they have exacerbated the conflict, perpetuated it and made it more violent - precisely the opposite of what was intended when their interventions were launched. Mike Martin's oral history of Helmand under- scores the absolute imperative of understanding the highly local, personal, and non-ideological nature of internal conflict in much of the 'third' world.

Corners In The City Of God

Author: Jonathan Tran
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
ISBN: 1608998517
Size: 21.20 MB
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David Simon's The Wire lays out before us a city in which people struggle under the weight of poverty, political corruption, economic despair, educational collapse, and the drug trade. This volume explores the various theological, ethical, and philosophical challenges presented by The Wire. As each season of The Wire unfolds, the moral complexities of life in the city deepen, as the failures of one system have unforeseen effects in other corners of the city. Fleshing out the ongoing tension between the "earthly city" and the City of God, Corners in the City of God is a theological companion to David Simon's masterpiece, inviting the reader to wrestle with the implications of belonging fully to the cities of the world, in all of their splendor and tragedy.

Big Bets And Black Swans 2014

Author: Ted Piccone
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 0815726066
Size: 55.71 MB
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President Obama has just three years left in office to define his legacy in world affairs. He's facing a number of critical challenges—the ongoing war in Syria, the Iran nuclear negotiations, an enigmatic North Korea and other significant crises in world affairs. The president's advisors are busy devising policy recommendations aimed at grappling with these thorny issues. From these, the president must decide which priorities to pursue and how to best exercise U.S. power and influence to manage and shape the global order. This book presents a set of policy analysis and recommendations from The Foreign Policy scholars at the Brookings Institution. Designed to provide the White House with innovative and actionable policy initiatives, the book is constructed as a series of memos to President Obama. This year, the memos are divided into five categories: • Big Bets are issues where the president should consider investing his power, time and prestige in major efforts that can have a transformational impact on America and the world. • Double Downs are derived from the Big Bets from last year's recommendations that the president should redouble his efforts on. • Black Swans are those low-probability but high-impact events that can divert the president and his administration's higher purposes, such as dramatic negative events that he will want to take steps in advance to avoid or to mitigate their consequences. • Nightmares are events that look more likely than a Black Swan and could prove particularly troublesome for U.S. interests and the global order, and for which the administration should prepare. • Holds are updated policy recommendations to stay the course on approaches suggested last year.

Gewalt

Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: S. Fischer Verlag
ISBN: 310401616X
Size: 62.10 MB
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Die Geschichte der Menschheit – eine ewige Abfolge von Krieg, Genozid, Mord, Folter und Vergewaltigung. Und es wird immer schlimmer. Aber ist das richtig? In einem wahren Opus Magnum, einer groß angelegten Gesamtgeschichte unserer Zivilisation, untersucht der weltbekannte Evolutionspsychologe Steven Pinker die Entwicklung der Gewalt von der Urzeit bis heute und in allen ihren individuellen und kollektiven Formen, vom Verprügeln der Ehefrau bis zum geplanten Völkermord. Unter Rückgriff auf eine Fülle von wissenschaftlichen Belegen aus den unterschiedlichsten Disziplinen beweist er zunächst, dass die Gewalt im Laufe der Geschichte stetig abgenommen hat und wir heute in der friedlichsten Epoche der Menschheit leben. Diese verblüffende Tatsache verlangt nach einer Erklärung: Pinker schält in seiner Analyse sechs Entwicklungen heraus, die diesen Trend begünstigt haben, untersucht die Psychologie der Gewalt auf fünf innere Dämonen, die Gewaltausübung begünstigen, benennt vier Eigenschaften des Menschen, die den inneren Dämonen entgegenarbeiten und isoliert schließlich fünf historische Kräfte, die uns heute in der friedlichsten Zeit seit jeher leben lassen. Pinkers Darstellung revolutioniert den Blick auf die Welt und uns Menschen. Und sie macht Hoffnung und Mut. »Pinkers Studie ist eine leidenschaftliche Antithese zum verbreiteten Kulturpessimismus und dem Gefühl des moralischen Untergangs der Moderne.« Der Spiegel »Steven Pinker ist ein Top-Autor und verdient all die Superlative, mit denen man ihn überhäuft« New York Times» Die Argumente von Steven Pinker haben Gewicht [...]. Die Chance, heute Opfer von Gewalt zu werden, ist viel geringer als zu jeder anderen Zeit. Das ist eine spannende Nachricht, die konträr zur öffentlichen Wahrnehmung ist." Deutschlandfunk »Steven Pinker ist ein intellektueller Rockstar« The Guardian »Der Evolutionspsychologe Steven Pinker gilt als wichtigster Intellektueller« Süddeutsche Zeitung »Verflucht überzeugend« Hamburger Abendblatt