The potential chaos highlighted by a 2011 Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Contingency Planning Memorandum, "Post-Qaddafi Instability in Libya," has come to fruition. Daniel P. Serwer outlines the unfolding crisis and recommends steps the United States, Europe, and Arab countries can take to help mitigate the fallout.
Territorial disputes in the South China Sea continue to be a source of tension and potential conflict between China and other countries in the region. Bonnie S. Glaser argues that the United States should help lower the risk of conflict in the region, including the potential for dangerous military incidents involving U.S. and Chinese military forces.
Venezuela is in a state of protracted crisis. Ambassador Patrick Duddy updates his 2012 Contingency Planning Memorandum to reflect the current likelihood of significant political instability in Venezuela and the options available to the United States.
As Africa's strategic importance grows, the African Union is poised to be a U.S. partner on the continent. The AU, however, must take concrete steps to develop its conflict-management capabilities—an area in which the United States can play a critical role.
CFR scholars provide policy options for preventing a major crisis in the territories immediately adjacent to China: North Korea, Myanmar, Pakistan, and Central Asia.
This Center for Preventive Action Working Paper surveys existing approaches to assessing state fragility and failure within the context of development, conflict, and governance. It examines the risk factors that have been identified through systematic inquiry and research with the goal of improving the prospects for successful conflict prevention and management, and argues that the goal of "early warning" relating to state fragility and failure should be more to inform and temper our expectations for policy response than to trigger costly and risky interventions.
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This report is a collaborative effort drawn up in a response to a request from Congress to examine the situation in Somalia, namely options for diplomacy.
Despite years of involvement by the United States and its allies, the Balkans region is suffering from economic stagnation and high unemployment; hundreds of thousands of refugees still await resettlement; prominent war criminals remain at large; and political and legal reform is impeded by endemic corruption, organized crime, and in some cases, a lack of political will. Yet after a decade of extensive involvement and peacemaking in the Balkans, the United States and its allies are winding down their commitment to the region. At this critical juncture, warns this independent Task Force report, if the problems besieging the Balkan states are left unresolved, they will lead to serious social and economic instability for southeastern Europe.
This Center for Preventive Action report emerged from a workshop that gathered scholars and practitioners to examine the issue of early warning and conflict prevention.
Amid Kyrgyzstan's domestic upheaval, the status of an important U.S. military base could become shakier, says expert Alexander Cooley of Columbia University.
John Prendergast, codirector of the ENOUGH Project, discusses U.S. policy toward Sudan and what a new U.S. president should do to address the crisis in Darfur.
Alex de Waal, an Africa expert at the Social Science Research Council, says the rebellion in Chad could prompt an escalation of the conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region.
Mauro de Lorenzo, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, discusses the roots of the conflict in Eastern Congo and what is needed to resolve it.
CFR’s Michelle Gavin discusses the violence and political tumult that have erupted in the wake of Kenya’s December elections.
In April 2014, at the Western Pacific Naval Symposium held in Qingdao, China, twenty-one Pacific nations including the United States signed the Conduct for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES), to reduce tensions between different militaries. CUES is not legally binding.
Foreign ministers from the United States, the European Union, Ukraine, and Russia released a joint statement on April 17, 2014, outlining steps to reduce tensions in Ukraine after President Viktor Yanukovich was ousted and Russia annexed Crimea. The foreign ministers charge Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) with enforcing the agreement. Secretary of State John Kerry and EU High Representative Catherine Ashton held a press conference to discuss the agreement.
This January 2012 UN report from a special Secretary-General appointed mission to the Sahel region assesses the "scope of the threat of the Libyan crisis in the region and the national, regional and wider international capacities to respond to those challenges".
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For more conflict prevention analysis, visit CFR's Center for Preventive Action.
Williams argues that the status quo for peace operations in untenable and that greater U.S. involvement is necessary to enhance the quality and success of peacekeeping missions.
The authors argue that the United States has responded inadequately to the rise of Chinese power and recommend placing less strategic emphasis on the goal of integrating China into the international system and more on balancing China's rise.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Ashley's War tells the poignant and gripping story of a groundbreaking team of female American warriors who served alongside Special Operations soldiers in Afghanistan. More
Smith's insightful book explores the policy issues testing the Japanese government as it tries to navigate its relationship with an advancing China. More
This revolutionary new look at volatility and crisis in oil markets explores the conditions in which oil supply fears arise, gain popularity, and eventually wane. More
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2014 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass.
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