Archive | November, 2009

Is the West capable of fixing Afghanistan?

   The highly-controversial election in Afghanistan has added to concerns that the international mission in that country is doomed to failure. It is indicative of the fact that, despite the perceived power of the United States, it has been unable to ensure that Afghanistan’s reconstruction is moving in the right direction. Key to any effective democratic […]

Brown chides Karzai as questions rise about the future of Britain's committment in Afghanistan

In the wake of the killing of five UK soldiers by an Afghan police trainee, PM Gordon Brown has called on Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai to step up efforts to tackle rampant corruption in the Afghan government. Though he emphasized the point that Britain’s commitment to Afghanistan remained firm, as long as al Qaeda remained […]

Ethnic divisions in northern Iraq: bad news for minorities

Baghdad’s north is increasingly divided between Arabs and Kurds and, according to Human Rights Watch, is highly detrimental to the other minority populations living in Iraq. In a recent publication On Vulnerable Ground  the group explains that minorities remain vulnerable to attacks by Sunni Arab extremists and intimidation from Kurdish forces. Iraqi minorities are indeed trapped […]

UN pulls half its staff out of Afghanistan

On November 5, 2009 the United Nations pulled half of the staff it had in Afghanistan out of the country. A total of 600 of the 1,100 foreign UN workers currently in Afghanistan will now temporarily depart until the situation gets better. The UN also threatened to permanently remove all staff if the situation continues to […]

US Appeals Court Rejects Arar's Detention and Torture Claim

An American federal court of appeal ruled this week that Maher Arar, a Syrian-born Canadian, cannot sue the United States government and its officials because Congress has not authorized these types of law suits. Mr. Arar was attempting to sue those within the United States government who were involved with his arrest and deportation to Syria, […]

Germany's Nuclear Dilemma and the Future of NATO

In 2009 the need for tactical nuclear weapons in Europe is dwindling. According to Prof. Joachim Krause of the Institute for Security Policy at Christian Albrecht University, the 480 warheads currently located in Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany and Turkey, are primarily short-range tactical weapons and their range is too limited to reach targets in […]