Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

Op-Ed

Moral Obscenity, Global Red Line

Author: Julia E. Sweig
Folha de Sao Paulo

Julia Sweig argues that, while skepticism of military intervention is reasonable in normal times, the use of chemical weapons in Syria has changed the goalposts and demands action from the world. In spite of its painful memories of U.S. intervention in its own recent history, Latin America should invoke the doctrine of Responsibility while Protecting, and partner with Western leaders as a source of humanitarian aid and refugee assistance.

See more in Syria; Latin America and the Caribbean; Politics and Strategy; Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

Must Read

New Yorker: City of the Lost

Author: David Remnick

"Refugee camps are born of emergency and evolve into cities of dependency, bureaucracy, and static suffering. They rescue human beings, and then they warehouse them. They relieve the host country of the financial burden and diffuse it among the member states of the United Nations."

See more in Syria; Refugees and the Displaced

Op-Ed

Democracy in Egypt Can Wait

Author: Charles A. Kupchan
New York Times

Washington should temper its push for democracy in Egypt and the wider Mideast, focusing more on helping transitional states govern responsibly and peaceably, says CFR's Charles Kupchan.

See more in Egypt; Democratization

Ask CFR Experts

Why have many Muslim states struggled to achieve democracy?

Asked by Farah, from University of Karachi

If "democracy" is achieved when governments rule by consent through free and fair elections, then some of the world's largest Muslim nations are democratic: Indonesia, Bangladesh, and Turkey. In the Arab world, experiments to achieve democratic governance are underway in Iraq, Lebanon, and Tunisia, and are beginning in earnest in Egypt. Arguably, Pakistan has just witnessed its first democratic transition of power.

Read full answer

See more in Middle East and North Africa; Democratization

Primary Sources

UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan: Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict

The Human Rights Unit of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) prepares mid-year reports on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict in Afghanistan, as mandated by United Nations Security Council Resolution 2096 (2013), which "recognizes the importance of ongoing monitoring and reporting to the United Nations Security Council on the situation of civilians in Afghanistan's armed conflict and in particular on civilian casualties."

See more in Afghanistan; Conflict Assessment; Human Rights