›May 20, 2015 // By Schuyler Null
In a commencement speech at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy today, President Obama said “climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security, and, make no mistake, it will impact how our military defends our country.”
›April 29, 2015 // By Schuyler Null
It’s a bit late, but the second-ever Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR) is finally here. And it’s a good thing – it’d be a shame if this effort to present a coherent strategic narrative of U.S. diplomacy and development, which was started by Secretary of State Clinton in 2010, petered out.
In a headline-making article in the journal PNAS, Colin P. Kelley et al. write there is evidence that the ongoing conflict in Syria, which has killed at least 200,000, was triggered by climate change. Severe drought from 2007 to 2010 caused a massive rural-to-urban demographic shift which exacerbated pre-existing sociopolitical tensions in Syrian cities already inundated with Iraqi refugees.
Accessing maternal health care is already a challenge in many countries, and when conflict erupts or a disaster strikes, it can get even worse, leaving millions of women on their own while at their most vulnerable, said Ugochi Daniels, chief of humanitarian response for the UN Population Fund (UNFPA). Women and girls also become more vulnerable to violence during times of crisis, she said, by virtue of nothing but their gender. [Video Below]
Last week, the Islamic State’s ignorance of the role of demography in their local success may have led them to overplay their hand. Seeking to dissuade Jordanians from following their government in actively supporting the alliance arrayed against them, they executed a captured Jordanian pilot in horrendous fashion, burning him alive. Yet Jordan is not like Syria or Iraq, where violence against westerners or Shi’a or other minorities has helped split people from their allegiance to the government. Instead, this act of violence seems to have unified Jordan’s Sunnis against the Islamic State for their actions against a fellow Sunni Muslim. Jordan has expanded its assault, striking dozens of targets in Iraq for the first time.
›November 5, 2014 // By Wilson Center Staff
Viewed from afar, the two-mile-long Mosul Dam is an impressive sight on the flat, sunbaked northern plains.
›October 23, 2014 // By Wilson Center Staff
Mass displacement has become a significant feature of recent conflicts, as the number of people forced to flee their homes has passed 50 million worldwide, a level not seen since World War II. This is one of the reasons why the UN Security Council will focus on women refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) during its annual open debate on women, peace, and security on October 28, according to Elizabeth Cafferty, senior advocacy officer at the Women’s Refugee Commission.
›September 11, 2014 // By Wilson Center Staff
Tucked away in a recent New York Times story on military operations against ISIS by Iraqi special forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga was a brief description of what these troops discovered when they entered a village in Iraq that had been occupied by ISIS fighters. A naked woman, tied to a tree, who had been repeatedly raped by ISIS fighters. Another woman was discovered in a second village, similarly naked, tied down and repeatedly raped. The fighters, it appears, are “rewarded” by being allowed to have their way with captured women.
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