This article, based on almost eight years of continuous anthropological research amongst the Tuareg people of the Sahara and Sahel, suggests that the launch by the US and its main regional ally, Algeria, in 2002–2003 of a ‘new’, ‘second’, or ‘Saharan’ Front in the ‘War on Terror’ was largely a fabrication on the part of the US and Algerian military intelligence services. The ‘official truth’, embodied in an estimated 3,000 articles and reports of one sort or another, is largely disinformation. The article summarizes how and why this deception was effected and examines briefly its implications for both the region and its people as well as the future of US international relations and especially its global pursuance of an increasingly suspect ‘War on Terror’.
Anthropology and the alternative truth of America's 'War on Terror' in the Sahara
Sovereign exception or wild sovereignty?
It seems vital, in the face of escalating Israeli expansionism in the Palestinian Territories and obstructionism in the "Peace Process," to theorize the cultural foundations of a process of containment and dispossession of Palestinians that can no longer convincingly be seen as mere strategy. Symptomatic of the Israeli state program is the "wall" (a.k.a., "the Security Fence" or the "Apartheid Wall") and its radical encroachment into territory designated as the grounds of a future Palestinian state. The following essay attempts an anthropological analysis of the concept of "border" in contemporary Israeli thought and practice, and, in so doing, assesses the impact of a limitless sovereignty on both an encompassed minority population and on international relations more generally.
Erella Grassiani, Alexander Horstmann, Lotte Buch Segal, Ronald Stade and Henrik Vigh
Violence, defined as the intentional inflicting of injury and damage, seems to always have been a fact of human life. Whether in the shape of raids, ambushes, wars, massacres, genocides, insurgences, terrorism, or gang assaults, socially organized violence, that is, human groups orchestrating and committing violent acts, has been a steady companion of human life through the ages. The human quest to make sense of violence is probably as old as violence itself. Academic conflict research both continues and advances this quest. As long as wars were waged between nations, the research on armed conflicts focused on international relations and great power politics. This paradigm was kept alive even when the asymmetrical warfare of decolonization spread across the world, because by then the frame of analysis was the binary system of the Cold War and regional conflicts were classifi ed as proxy wars. After the end of the Cold War, the academic interest in forms of organized violence other than international conflict became more general in the social sciences, not least in anthropology, a discipline whose long-standing research interest in violent conflict previously had been directed almost exclusively towards “tribal warfare.” But, following their research tradition, anthropologists also began to conduct field studies in contemporary war zones and other violent settings.
The British Prime Minister Tony Blair has appealed to the other members of the European Union to engage constructively with the Bush administration as a means of working towards peace in a perilous world. The combination of highly developed destructive capacity, relative economic decline, diplomatic incompetence, and continuing political divisions among a frustrated and resentful population that is deeply ignorant of the wider world and subject to recurrent bouts of collective paranoia does indeed make the United States a dangerous international agent. One of the main ways, in particular, in which the U.S. represents a particular menace to world peace at the moment is that it has come to be in Washington’s short-term interest to make the world a place in which the quick recourse to violence, and the constant threat of violence, is accepted as part of normal practice in international relations. The use of military power presents itself as an increasingly attractive option primarily because the U.S. is becoming weaker and weaker economically and politically, and force is one of the few means U.S. politicians can deploy that offer any hope whatever of allowing them to advance or protect what they think are their vital interests.
Thomas Henökl and Michael Reiterer
Inter-regional orchestration is one possible strategy to shape global governance agendas, to coordinate international norm setting and contribute to a negotiated international order. The European Union has been engaging in various international, multilateral and inter-regional settings seeking cooperation with state and non-state actors striving for a multipolar and, to some extent post-Westphalian, system, based on democratic global governance structures and the rule of law among nations. Europe's interests, it is frequently argued, are best served by a stable set of relations, allowing for political and economic cooperation, trade and mutual respect. At the same time, the EU may have a system-inherent bias for regional cooperation. This contribution asks which are the innovative policy means to build multilateral governance structures, and what does the EU do to promote these with its partners around the world, and in particular in Asia and in the East-Asian sub-region. By adopting a behavioral approach and analyzing the mechanisms and instruments of EU engagement in Asia, this article contributes an organizational perspective on EU external governance and its multi-level foreign policy architecture to the geopolitical debates on the EU's role in Asian regional development.
Spanish Una posible estrategia para organizar las agendas de gobernanza global, coordinar el establecimiento de normas internacionales y contribuir a un orden internacional negociado es la orquestación interregional. La Unión Europea (UE) ha participado en varios foros internacionales e interregionales que buscan cooperar con actores estatales y no gubernamentales, aspirando a establecer un sistema multipolar , basado en el Estado de derecho y en estructuras de gobernanza democrática global. En este sentido, se e afirma que, probablemente, la UE tenga un sistema que esté inherentemente condicionado a favor de la cooperación regional. Este artículo se interroga sobre la determinación de las políticas innovadoras que construirán la estructura para una gobernanza multilateral y sobre el papel de la UE para promover políticas de desarrollo regional en Asia y, más particularmente, en Asia Oriental.
French L'orchestration interrégionale est une des stratégies possibles pour influencer l'agenda de la gouvernance globale, coordonner la création des normes internationales et pour contribuer à un ordre international négocié. L'Union européenne s'est engagée dans des schémas internationaux, multilatéraux et interrégionaux divers, en coopération avec des acteurs étatiques et non-étatiques, aspirant à un système multipolaire et, dans un certain sens, post-Westphalien, basé sur des structures démocratiques de gouvernance mondiale et ancré dans le droit international. Il est fréquemment évoqué que les intérêts européens sont mieux sauvegardés par un ensemble de relations stables, permettant la coopération politique et économique, le commerce et le respect mutuel. De plus, la matrice organisationnelle de l'UE semble être biaisée vers la coopération régionale. On s'interroge ensuite, sur la promotion de l'ensemble de ces pratiques par l'Union européenne avec ses partenaires dans le monde entier, et, plus particulièrement, dans la région de l'Asie de l'Est. Adoptant une approche béhavioriste, cet article examine les mécanismes et les instruments de l'engagement européen en Asie de l'Est et apporte une perspective organisationnelle de la gouvernance externe de l'UE et de son architecture multiniveaux de politique extérieure.
The unprecedented government majority that resulted from the 2001
election and the radical promises of the prime minister candidate Silvio
Berlusconi had suggested that epochal change could follow the
alternation of government from left to right. Major constitutional and
socio-economic reform had been promised that would create a new,
successful, and dynamic country of which Italians could be proud.
More specifically, the public had been led to believe that the government
would enact strong federal reform while reinforcing the executive,
perhaps especially the prime minister, and introducing a new era
of markedly liberal economic policies. Thus, tax cuts and the promotion
of economic growth would create jobs and guarantee continuing
high standards of living. The government’s “honeymoon period,” however,
was short-lived. By the end of the year, trust in the government
had fallen to just below 50 percent, where it stabilized throughout
2002. Doubts about the government’s ability to deliver reflected its
poor performance on economic and social matters, resulting from both
the international economic downturn and its own mismanagement of
the domestic agenda, most notably industrial relations. By the autumn
of 2003, the Bank of Italy was drawing attention to a two-year period
of domestic stagnation and a decade-long investment slump.
Rebecca Pates and Maximilian Schochow, ed., Der “Ossi:” Mikropolitische Studien über einen symbolischen Ausländer (Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 2013)
Reviewed by René Wolfsteller
Lisa Pine, Education in Nazi Germany (Oxford; New York: Berg, 2010)
Reviewed by Gregory Baldi
Stephen J. Silvia, Holding the Shop Together: German Industrial Relations in the Postwar Era (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2013)
Reviewed by Volker Berghahn
Egbert Klautke, The Mind of the Nation: Völkerpsychologie in Germany, 1851-1955 (New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2013)
Reviewed by David Freis
Damani J. Partridge, Hypersexuality and Headscarves: Race, Sex and Citizenship in the New Germany (Bloomington: Indiana Universtiy Press, 2012)
Reviewed by Myra Marx Ferree
Moshe Zimmermann, Deutsche gegen Deutsche: Das Schicksal der Juden, 1938-1945 (Berlin: Aufbau-Verlag, 2008; Hebrew trans., Tel Aviv: Am Oved, 2013)
Reviewed by Noga Wolff
Zara Steiner, The Triumph of the Dark: European International History, 1933-1939 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011)
Reviewed by Volker Prott
Stefan Berger and Norman La Porte, Friendly Enemies: Britain and the GDR, 1949-1990 (New York: Berghahn Books, 2010)
Reviewed by Meredith Heiser-Duron
Our Summer issue features three articles on key aspects of German
politics and society. Belinda Cooper analyzes yet another angle of the
thorny Stasi problem, in this case the role and presence of women
in the Stasi. Placing her discussion in the larger context of women
in East Germany, Cooper has fashioned a nuanced, meticulously
researched argument about an issue that remains pertinent in the
debate on Germany, women, unification, and the country’s complex
past. John Bendix and Niklaus Steiner provide a new epistemological
prism for the evaluation of Germany’s much discussed problem of
political asylum. They address this difficult topic in the context of
existing approaches in comparative politics and international relations,
featuring the notion of “national interest” in their presentation.
Ludger Helms then offers a fascinating study of an often-neglected
institution of German politics: that of the federal presidency since
1949. After a careful reading of this article, it is evident that the German
presidency deserves more attention in the future research
agenda of political scientists than it has garnered in the past.
The focus of this special issue of Theoria is the Politics of Migration. Our aim in designing and attracting contributions to this issue was to contribute to the current debates on various aspects of global migration practices that are challenging the ways in which many nation-states, sending and receiving migrants, conceive of their place in this ever-changing globalised and globalising world in which we all live. International Relations theorists have, for several years, been writing about the contesting phenomena of integration and disintegration in global politics. As the world becomes more globalised, more linked and interdependent, the reality of a kind of global citizenship for the privileged elite with access to the markets and their spoils become more apparent. Those on the other end of the spectrum, often immigrant, minority and working class groupings who do not have access to resources beyond those promised to them by the state they rely on, react against these globalising forces. The result is a contest between a global integration and pulling together of individuals all over the world with similar political and economic situations, and a disintegration within and between nation-states, where those without these networks retreat into ethnic and cultural enclaves that offer them protection and defence against globalising impulses.
Over and above the reasons or the wrongs of the apologists and the critics of globalisation, it seems impossible to deny the development, during these last few decades, of a global network of social connections and functional interdependences that link individuals and nations – no one is excluded. As Tony Spybey and Roland Robertson remind us, even the deepest meanings of existence, the most intimate of personal experiences and daily behaviour are involved in this radical change of cognitive and symbolic reference points: the world as a whole.1 The globalised world is the result of a series of compressions and integrations that have reduced the so-called ‘empty gaps’ in the material of human relations. As Joseph Stiglitz emphasized, the thing that has favoured the process of global compression-integration is the impressive reduction of the time and cost of transport and communication, and the demolition of artificial barriers to the international circulation of goods, services, capital, knowledge, and – even if still strongly obstructed – of people and labour.