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Internalizing Europe

Albanian Perceptions of the Continent in Historical Perspective (1878-2008)

Adrian Brisku

This article argues that post-socialist Albanian myths and images surrounding the concept of Europe need to be considered from a triadic dimension of (geo)politics, modernities, and cultural identity as well as within a larger historical perspective of the modern Albanian political and intellectual landscape. Seen from a perspective stretching from the late nineteenth century to the present, a triadic Europe appears pluralistic with continuous as well as contested images and narratives. Yet, behind these images and narratives stands one constant understanding of the continent: a political and military power and prosperously untamed marketplace through which Albanians have attempted to navigate their modern existence.

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Henrik Åström Elmersjö and Daniel Lindmark

History as a school subject has been a thorny issue for advocates of peace education at least since the 1880s. Efforts, including the substitution of cultural history for military history, have been made to ensure that history teaching promotes international understanding, not propagates chauvinism. The Norden Associations of Scandinavia, which were involved in textbook revision since 1919, achieved some success by altering contents, but national myths remained central to each country's historical narrative, making it difficult to give history education its desired international orientation.

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James Ryan Anderson

In a little more than a decade, Germany’s role in international affairs—

particularly from a military perspective—has radically changed. Whereas

German participation during the Persian Gulf War of 1991 was

basically limited to providing financial support to the international

coalition led by the United States, by the end of 2001, German soldiers

were operating under combat conditions in the United Nations peacekeeping

mission to Afghanistan. During (and even before) this transition,

little attention has been devoted to the German Bundestag’s

constitutional role as overseer of executive foreign affairs activities.

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Rainer Baumann

When German foreign policy is being described, a reference to multilateralism

is rarely ever omitted. Together with Westbindung, restraint

in using military force, and a trading-state orientation, Germany’s

preference for multilateral settings is recognized as one of the central

elements of its foreign policy. In recent years, a number of studies

have shown that, in contrast to realist expectations from the early

1990s, the more powerful unified Germany has continued to embrace

this multilateralism. This applies to Germany’s willingness to bind

itself to NATO and other European and Euro-Atlantic security institutions,

1 to Germany’s policy within and vis-à-vis the EU,2 and to its

foreign policy on a global scale.

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Paula Kabalo

Attempts to explain the achievements of the Jewish side in the 1948 War of Independence have focused thus far on the military and political dimension and on the domestic social, economic, and ideological dimension, as reflected in the collective mobilization of the Yishuv society. This article reveals the role of additional players in the war, including institutions, organizations, and associations that provided social services; the individuals who headed them; the members who took part in operating them; and the recipients of their services. The article's underlying premise is that Jewish society largely owed its resilience during the war, and in its aftermath, to the functioning of these organizations.

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Daniel Bar-Tal and Izhak Schnell, eds., The Impacts of Lasting Occupation: Lessons from Israeli Society Review by Ned Lazarus

Alan Craig, International Legitimacy and the Politics of Security: The Strategic Deployment of Lawyers in the Israeli Military Review by Ariel L. Bendor

Joel S. Migdal, Shifting Sands: The United States in the Middle East Review by Aharon Klieman

Miriam Fendius Elman, Oded Haklai, and Hendrik Spruyt, eds., Democracy and Conflict Resolution: The Dilemmas of Israel's Peacemaking Review by Jay Rothman

Eyal Levin, Ethos Clash in Israeli Society Review by Gabriel Ben-Dor

Danielle Gurevitch, Elana Gomel, and Rani Graff, eds., With Both Feet on the Clouds: Fantasy in Israeli Literature Review by Ari Ofengenden

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2. The Mysterious Mr Le Queux

War Novelist, Defence Publicist and Counterspy

Roger T. Stearn

This article presents what is widely considered to be the best biographical account of the life of the controversial popular author, journalist and amateur spy, William Le Queux. The article originally appeared in Soldiers of the Queen, the journal of the Victorian Military Society, and is reproduced here with their kind permission in order to bring it before a new audience. It documents Le Queux’s life, from the little that is known about his early career through to his high-profile involvement in defence scaremongering before and during the First World War to his subsequent lapse into postwar obscurity.

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Michael Provence

Since March 2011, Syrian citizens have challenged their government through street protests and, more recently, armed confrontations. Both the protest movement and the government’s response to it have their roots in the recent past. This article examines the contours of the last decade, and events in Syria since 2011, to understand the origins of popular protest and the origins of the Syrian government’s largely military response. Protest and dissent appeared after Bashar al-Assad came to power in 2000. The government’s response to such protest was not predetermined, but was rather the result of specific governing structures and political choices made by state elites.

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Scientists in Time of War

World War II, the Cold War, and Science in the United States and France

Dominique Pestre

Before addressing its central concern—the convergence of science, war, institutions, and politics in the postwar period in France and the United States—, this essay evokes how scientific knowledge had been of importance to warfare and economic elites in the preceding centuries. In the 1940s and 1950s, scientific activities were profoundly redefined. A culture of laboratory solutions, of calculus, and management won the day. For the scientists, that meant versatility and a willingness to work between disciplines and métiers and to confront the nation's main concerns. It also led to increasingly technocratic versions of politics. Due to science, the state became a managerial apparatus, a "modernizer" arbitrating among different scenarios. Contrary to what happened in the United States, science was not center stage in France in the 1940s and early 1950s. The habitus of scientists was that of the prewar period, and they were still not technique-oriented. They had a more cultural definition of their trade and were not opportunists whose aim was to become pragmatically efficient in the world of business and military action. From the mid-1950s, things started to evolve due to a strong economic recovery and because French scientists had now caught up with the latest developments. The final break, however, occurred in France only when de Gaulle abandoned the Algerian war and elected for an autonomous nuclear deterrence system. By putting la stratégie de l'arsenal at the core of national development, de Gaulle significantly transformed French science, society, industry, and the military.

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Unbecoming Veteranship

Convicted Military Officers in Post-authoritarian Argentina

Eva van Roekel and Valentina Salvi

In post-authoritarian Argentina, veterans who participated in the brutal counterinsurgency of the last dictatorship (1976–1983) inhabit an extremely inconsistent citizenship, alternatively violating and respecting legal rights and entitlements. This article looks at how alternating transitional justice practices and the ever-changing moral discourses about warfare and accountability create highly unstable access to rights, resources, and entitlements for these veterans in Argentina. Th e recent shift toward retribution for crimes against humanity in Argentina has legally consolidated their moral downfall. From being untouchable and exemplary officers until the early 1980s, the now convicted military officers have been demoted twice by the state and the military institution. Based on long-term fieldwork with the convicted officers and their kin, this article traces the contingent relation between the moral and legal practices that underlie this double downfall that constitutes a fluctuating process of un/becoming veteranship for these veterans. Their veteranship, for that matter, depends on highly conflictive and transformative sociopolitical processes that speak to broader moral dispositions surrounding legal rights, entitlements, and worthiness for veterans.