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Moscow Plays Poker in Syria: What’s at Stake?

Moscow Plays Poker in Syria: What’s at Stake?

Foreign Policy & International Relations

Russian military deployment in Syria should not be considered as the core goal of Moscow’s diplomacy but its instrument. It is also a serious mistake to present Russian efforts in the country as the result of a game of “chicken” between Moscow and the West. Moscow is playing a...

21 Oct 2015

Highlights from the White House Summit to Counter ISIL and Violent Extremism

Highlights from the White House Summit to Counter ISIL and Violent Extremism

Security, Defense & Terrorism

On 29 September, President Obama hosted another Leader’s Summit Counter ISIL and Violent Extremism.  This was a follow on from a similar Leaders’ Summit hosted by the White House in February of this year on Countering Violent Extremism. The September Summit was attended by representatives from 100 states, 20...

18 Oct 2015

The ‘Right’ to Education and the Rhetoric of ‘Human Dignity’: UNRWA’s Budget Shortfalls

The ‘Right’ to Education and the Rhetoric of ‘Human Dignity’: UNRWA’s Budget Shortfalls

Human Rights

The recently feared financial shortfalls of UNRWA in the Middle Eastern region, which could have caused a delay in the start of the academic year, showed once again how some commentators, the general public, and especially UNRWA mechanically draw on the language of human rights as well as the...

13 Oct 2015

American Military Strategy in Libya

American Military Strategy in Libya

Foreign Policy & International Relations

September 11 now unfortunately marks not only the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, but also the assassination of the U.S. Ambassador in Benghazi, Libya in 2012. Ambassador Christopher Stevens was killed in an attack on the U.S. Temporary Mission Facility and the CIA Annex by militias affiliated with...

04 Oct 2015

Constructions of Terrorism: A Definition

Constructions of Terrorism: A Definition

Constructions of Terrorism

As part of the research project “Constructions of Terrorism” being undertaken by TRENDS Research and Advisory, and the Orfale Center for Global and International Studies, this article addresses the task of defining “terrorism.”  I will begin by advancing why it is important to undertake the task of carefully defining...

01 Oct 2015

The Politics of Labeling “Terrorism” in the United States

The Politics of Labeling “Terrorism” in the United States

Security, Defense & Terrorism

In July 2015, Mohammod Abdulazeez opened fire on two military facilities in the southern American city of Chattanooga, Tennessee, fatally wounding five U.S. navy service members. After reporters rushed to tie the shooting to “terrorism,” some sensed a double standard in how violent attacks in the United States are...

17 Sep 2015

Towards a New World Order

Towards a New World Order

Foreign Policy & International Relations

Soon after the breaching of the Berlin Wall in November 1989, President H. W. Bush declared the onset of a ‘new world order’. The term has a long provenance, being first used in the contemporary era by President Woodrow Wilson in his Fourteen Points, when he called for the...

09 Sep 2015

Small States in a Global Age: Soft Power, Cultural Influence, and State-Branding

Small States in a Global Age: Soft Power, Cultural Influence, and State-Branding

Foreign Policy & International Relations

The shifting contours of the global order and the emergence of a new generation of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states’ leaders in the late 1990s and early 2000s intersected with changes to the very concepts of power and influence. Together, these opened up new possibilities and directions for the...

03 Sep 2015

French Interests and Strategy in Libya after Qaddafi

French Interests and Strategy in Libya after Qaddafi

Foreign Policy & International Relations

The French Embassy in Tripoli closed on 30 July 2014. French citizens were told by the French Foreign Ministry the following day to leave Libya due to a ‘worsening security situation’. Potential visitors to Libya checking French travel warnings will still find in summer 2015 that they risk kidnapping,...

02 Sep 2015

Are the Charleston and Chattanooga Shootings Acts of Terrorism, or Not?   

Are the Charleston and Chattanooga Shootings Acts of Terrorism, or Not?  

Security, Defense & Terrorism

In the space of a month this summer, the United States witnessed two horrific mass shootings in its southern cities of Charleston, South Carolina and Chattanooga, Tennessee.  On June 17, Dylann Roof, a young white male, murdered nine black citizens during a religious study meeting at a famous African...

30 Aug 2015

Who Buys Stolen Oil?

Who Buys Stolen Oil?

Security & Political Economy

When the international media first announced Daesh took control of oil fields in Iraq and Syria several media and government reports emerged estimating the amount of revenue the group could generate. Controlling oil fields, however, does not automatically translate into cash. More importantly, the market for illegally obtained crude...

26 Aug 2015

Beyond Legal Definitions: Migrants and Refugees as Ungraspable Categories. The Syrian Kurdish Exodus and the Lebanese Akkaris.

Beyond Legal Definitions: Migrants and Refugees as Ungraspable Categories. The Syrian Kurdish Exodus and the Lebanese Akkaris.

Migration & Refugees

Migrants are definable as people who spontaneously choose to leave their country and build a better life elsewhere. Before their departure, migrants are therefore able to ask for information about their destination and what opportunities they may have there. Moreover, they remain free to go back to their home...

20 Aug 2015

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