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This Week at ISN


16 20 September 2013

Our Weekly Editorial Roundup


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Editorial Plan | Security Watch | Blog | Video

// East Africa: Issues in Focus


Following last week's context-setting discussion on East Africa's ongoing struggles with insecurity, we now turn to a handful of specific issues that may influence the region's stability for years to come. They include Kenya's attempts to use regional trade diplomacy as a bromide for its economic and political woes at home; the ongoing political turmoil engulfing Sudan; the push to demobilize armed groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC); the attempt to secure a peaceful political transition in Eritrea; and finally, marking the future of intrastate conflict across the continent, with a particular focus upon East Africa.

The Economic Diplomacy of Kenya's Regional Interests


16 September 2013

Kenya may be the undoubted hub for trade and finance in East Africa, but its economic development has been compromised by a host of domestic problems. As a result, Nairobi is increasingly looking to its regional trade diplomacy to offset difficult conditions at home, writes Leonard Wanyama.More

Pathway to National Dialogue in Sudan


17 September 2013

It's two years after the secession of the South and Sudan remains in a state of political turmoil. What to do then? According to Princeton Lyman and Jon Temin, it's high time to pursue a national dialogue that involves all of the country's warring factions and the international community.More

Demobilization in the DRC: Armed Groups and the Role of Organizational Control
18 September 2013

How might the Democratic Republic of Congo disarm and demobilize the M23 rebels once and for all? Joanne Richards believes it might be in Kinshasa's interests to examine the country's previous experiences with disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration, most notably between 2004 and 2011. More

Eritrea: Scenarios for Future Transition


19 September 2013

Growing popular dissatisfaction and widening social divisions continue to destabilize the government of Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki. Today, our partners at the ICG map out six different scenarios for a post-Afwerki era.More

The Future of Intrastate Conflict in Africa - More Violence or Greater Peace?


20 September 2013

Will Africa in general and East Africa in particular still be synonymous with intrastate conflict in 2050? Not according to Jakkie Cilliers and Julia Schnemann. They argue that while instability and violence are likely to persist, large-scale unrest will have waned by then. More

// Security Watch
Australia Under Abbott
16 September 2013

What will Australia's foreign and security policies look like under the recently elected Tony Abbott? According to Sam Bateman, there's likely to be a greater emphasis on bilateral relations, a closer relationship between economic and foreign policies and a crackdown on 'big-ticket' issues such as immigration.More

European Defense Industry's Decreasing Competitiveness


17 September 2013

Europe's continued economic malaise is understandably having a negative impact on the research and development capabilities of its defense industries. Worse still, writes Marco Giulio Barone, structural disparities and excess regulation continue to stifle needed innovation and competitiveness. More

Shale Energy No Quick Solution


18 September 2013

Despite the introduction of a curfew and a heightened police presence, ethnic tensions in Kenya's Tana Delta region remain high. Today, Joseph Akwiri reveals what the locals think the government better intensify its security efforts if it wants to avoid more violence in the future.More

Israel's Reshuffled Strategic Deck


19 September 2013

The fall of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and domestic troubles in Turkey are among several factors that have changed the direction of the Arab Spring. That's good news for Israel, writes Ilan Berman. It's now able to navigate through a strategic environment that until recently was much less hospitable.More

Georgia: What's the Definition of Tolerance?


20 September 2013

While many Georgians are once again embracing their Orthodox Christian identity, a parallel process is occurring within the country's Muslim minority. As Molly Corso writes, however, they also have to deal with an upsurge in discrimination by Orthodox Georgians. More

// Blog
Guinea Poised to Complete Transition to Civilian Rule
16 September 2013

Guinea is poised to elect its first legislative assembly in five years, reports IRIN. For some, the elections are a sign that the West African country is making genuine democratic progress. Others warn, however, that simmering ethnic and political tensions may continue to compromise change.More

Europe After a British EU Withdrawal


17 September 2013

If Great Britain withdraws from the European Union, what then? Tim Oliver believes things would boil down to three issues institutional readjustment, a change in the organization's balance of power and a very different economic and foreign policy outlook.More

Comparative Connections September 2013


17 September 2013

Our partners at the Pacific Forum have just released the latest edition of Comparative Connections. This triannual publication provides expert commentary on the current status of a selection of bilateral relationships across the AsiaPacific region. Alongside a chronology of key events, a regional overview places recent developments into a broader and multilateral context.More

NGOs, Piracy and Maritime Crime in Southeast Asia


18 September 2013

While NGOs have made a significant contribution to tackling maritime piracy in Southeast Asia, they often miss an important point. As Joon Num Mak sees it, piracy is just one part of maritime crime and all of it needs to be combated by using nontraditional means.More

The BRICs Party is Over


19 September 2013

Growth rates and investments are declining in the emerging markets, writes Anders Aslund, and the BRICs have only themselves to blame. If they want to get back on track, they need to enact the kind of economic reforms that they shied away from during the good times.More

South Africa's Growing Challenges


20 September 2013

While South Africans fully expect the African National Congress to remain politically dominant for years to come, many of them have become unhappy with the party and how it is leading the country. Today, Bo Grannson outlines some of the social, economic and political problems facing Africa's top power.More

// Video
Building a Stable Somalia
In this video, Hassan Sheikh Mahamud, who is the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, discusses the recent progress his 'country' has made and what additional changes we should expect to see by the end of 2013. Given that the al Shabaab insurgency is in retreat and that regional partners are fully engaged in trying to buttress up the Somali government, the prospects for this once chaotic land, at least for the present, appear to be good.More

Mary Kaldor on New and Old Wars


In this video, Mary Kaldor, who is a Professor of Global Governance at the London School of Economics, discusses her book "New and Old Wars." In doing so, she explores how conflicts have changed in recent history but that the mindsets of policymakers who deal with them have not.More

Civil Society and the Quest for Democracy in Uganda: Threats and Opportunities
In this video, the National Endowment for Democracy's Frank Rusa Nyakaana explores the problems faced by Uganda's civil society as it struggles to establish political accountability within the country. In doing so, Nyakaana also recommends ways that local reformers might work with international actors and the Ugandan government to enhance the country's transparency. More

Coming Up
Next week our editorial focus examines security dynamics in southern Africa.

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