All in Conflict & Peace

Opinion | Turkey's Invasion of Kurdish Syria and Europe's Deafening Silence

Following Trump’s announcement of the U.S. withdrawal from parts of Syria, Turkey launched a military operation on Kurdish forces in Northeastern Syria. Not only is Europe's future relationship with Turkey at risk, but its relations with the wider Middle East, its reputation and credibility as a defender of human rights and democracy, and its geopolitical interests are all at stake.

Analysis | Gantz’s Gamble vs. the Netanyahu Narrative: Israel Elects

The April 9th election will not only decide who will lead Israel as Prime Minister, but it also has the potential to make drastic changes to Israeli policies towards the Palestinian Territories. Netanyahu’s victory may strike the deathblow to the two-state solution. His defeat could herald the rebirth of the Palestinian peace process. Israeli voters must now decide: to gamble on Gantz’s promise of diplomacy under fresh leadership or to defend Netanyahu’s narrative of an Israel under siege.

Analysis | Why they won’t stop protesting in Cauca

While the government insists on communities ending their blockade of the highway to meet, locals contend that they want President Duque himself to set a date to meet communities before they end their blockade. The standoff between the government and local indigenous communities is in its 18th day. The current situation is a result of the tremendous inequality in Cauca, longstanding indigenous complaints and unmet government promises – which threatens to spark a broader national movement. The government can end this protest, but doing so may invite future unrest.

Analysis | Russia Faces Rising Costs 5 Years After Crimea’s Annexation

The Crimean Peninsula may have strategic significance for the Russian military, but Russian President Vladimir Putin can no longer play the Crimea card at home for political gain. Even though the 2014 annexation of Crimea resulted in a sharp increase in the Russian president’s approval ratings, five years on the matter has been overshadowed by widespread economic hardship.

Analysis | A Cocktail for Catastrophe: India and Pakistan Clash over Kashmir

Despite major conflicts between India and Pakistan, the one constant rule has been the sanctity of the de facto borders in the contested territory of Kashmir. Such an understanding has ensured that both nations, while heavily active on the border, dare not violate it whatsoever, to the extent that individuals meeting in border crossings into the region usually maintain cordial relations. However, India and Pakistan’s de facto policy on the Kashmir region has changed dramatically over the last few years, perhaps irrevocably.

Analysis | Outbidding in Times of Uncertainty: Post-Conflict Transitions and Competitive Violence

Large bombings, only days apart, in Bogota and Derry/Londonderry have put paid to any notions of a simple peace process in either country. The Irish and Colombian peace processes face increasing uncertainty as the FARC deal remains delicately balanced against social tension and the Good Friday Agreement hangs under threat from the Brexit process. In both Colombia and Northern Ireland this situation incentivizes outbidding and conspicuous displays of force as armed groups jockey for power in anticipation of a breakdown in social order. 

Commentary | A Tale of Two Summits: Washington and Moscow Advance Opposing Visions for the Middle East

On the 14th of February, two conferences took place on the Middle East. One, featuring representatives from over 60 countries, took place in Warsaw under the leadership of the United States, with generous support from Poland. The other one was a trilateral summit at Sochi, featuring the leaders of Russia, Armenia and Turkey, and organized by Russia. These two summits provide a perfect example of the two approaches that major powers currently employ towards the region, as well as the sharp contrasts in the leadership and effectiveness of Russia and America in the region.

Analysis | What is Security? Everything.

With a return to great power competition, national security priorities are shifting. States, rather than non-state actors like terrorist groups or insurgencies, are the primary security threat. The idea that security encompasses more than military and defense issues alone has returned. The security paradigm of the twenty-first century has expanded to nearly every facet of human life.

Commentary | Is a Bad Peace better than a Good War?

Benjamin Franklin, remarking on the coming end of the American Revolutionary War, opined that “there was never a good War, or a bad Peace.” But not all peace is equal, and not all ceasefires lead to peace. The consequences of decisions made during negotiations will continue to reverberate long after the ink has dried. Policymakers must now reconcile the disparities created during the peace process that have benefited national security at the expense of the most vulnerable communities.