December 2018 Review

TransConflict is pleased to present a selection of articles published during December, plus updates from the Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation. 

 Suggested Reading Conflict Background GCCT

1) Keeping the peace in Europe – what hope the INF treaty?

Matthew Parish – The better solution to the problem of which INF Treaty withdrawal is a symptom is to reach a sustainable peace between Europe and Russia over the boundaries, economy, trade relationships and military position of Ukraine. Unless and until that is done, Europe will continue being armed to the teeth at the whim of two Superpowers in a replication of the perils and omens of the Cold War. Read on…

2) Partition phobia

David B. Kanin – The simple assumption that border changes, by necessity, bring horrific consequences is a form of work avoidance, as is the teleological notion that there exists some sort of known and practiced transition process from identity-based to civic-minded security regimes. As Kuhn demonstrated, the paladins of normal science can construct rationales to paper over the anomalies in their paradigms. Until the day they can’t. Read on…

3) Gülen and Erdogan’s Islamic rivalry and its consequences

Dr. Alon Ben-Meir and Arbana Xharra – The rivalry between Erdogan and Gülen suggests that despite Erdogan’s efforts to decimate the Hizmet movement, he will end up on the losing side. The majority of the Turkish population has suffered greatly from his purges and gross human rights abuses; coupled with an alarming deterioration of the economy, he has become increasingly unpopular. Read on…

4) Steps toward governance in Yemen

Rene Wadlow – Today, the choice between an end to the armed conflict with negotiations for a renewal of a Yemeni State on the basis of the con-federal system proposed and continued fighting in the hope that one faction become a “winner-take-all” is relatively clear. The Association of World Citizens (AWC) is resolutely for an end to the armed conflict with serious negotiations on the structure of a future State. Read on…

5) The EU and Turkey – long past the crossroads

Ulas Doga Eralp – It is high time policy makers in Berlin, Paris and Brussels start thinking about the partnership deal they would like to sign with Turkey. Erdogan’s Turkey has no place in the European Union but may as well be a strategic partner in the harsh political future that would require acrobatic moves by Brussels if it wants to stay relevant against an assertive Russia and dominant China. Read on…

6) Why Theresa May is right about Brexit

Matthew Parish – The idea that we could now go back to the EU and negotiate something better is unrealistic. We have achieved an extraordinary negotiating result. This is not a matter about which party politics should be engaged. It is objective, neutral fact. Read on…

7) Sri Lanka – a retreat from the precipice, for now

Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice – Unless the serious human rights violations at the heart of these stories are addressed, the perpetrators held to account, and the structures that enable such abuses dismantled, it seems inevitable that swings of the political pendulum in Sri Lanka – both constitutional and unconstitutional – will forever be haunted by the possibility that the worst violations of the past could return. Read on…



8) Trump’s New Year’s gift to Putin, Rouhani, and Erdogan

Dr. Alon Ben-Meir – Trump’s haphazard and thoughtless decision to withdraw forces from Syria points only to his abdication of the US’ moral responsibility, not to speak of its global leadership, which has been dangerously waning under his disastrous policies. Read on…


9) Paddy Ashdown, Balkan peacemaker

Matthew Parish – Paddy Ashdown made a real difference. Just one of his many successes in the region was to force through reconstruction of the Old Bridge in Mostar, a city in southern Bosnia. That bridge, destroyed as an act of inter-ethnic malice during the war, is once again a symbol of cooperation and cordiality overcoming ethnic hostility and the most malign horrors of civil war. The bridge will stand as a permanent monument to this giant of men. Read on…


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