In the face of mounting calls for his resignation, the secretary of defense is hanging tough. President Bush reiterates his support for Rumsfeld as the secretary defends his leadership of the Iraq war against attacks from retired senior military commanders.
With the anniversary of the war in Iraq approaching, the United States finds itself mired in a conflict rocked by sectarian violence, an unbowed Islamic insurgency, political bickering, and uneasiness at home about the ability of U.S.-led forces to find a way out.
Sectarian violence in the wake of this week’s attack on the Shiite Golden Mosque in Samarra have raised fears that an Iraqi civil war is imminent. Civil war would destroy the chances of the newly elected central government and create even more instability across the region.
Matt Waxman shows that congressional influence operates more robustly—and in different ways—than usually supposed in legal debates about war powers to shape strategic decision-making. In turn, these mechanisms of congressional influence can enhance the potency of threatened force.
Authors: Sarah E. Kreps and Gustavo A. Flores-Macias The American Political Science Review
Sarah Kreps and Gustavo Flores-Macias study the history of war finance in the United States and show that politics does not stop at the water's edge and that instead, partisan politics is a key determinant for whether the United States has financed wars through taxes or alternatives such as borrowing.
Micah Zenko says, "Most analysts and journalists have focused on President Obama's expanded scope, intensity, and institutionalization of targeted killings against suspected terrorists and militants. However, perhaps the enduring legacy of the Obama administration will be its sustained, rigorous effort to shape and define-down the idea of war."
Kenneth Anderson and Matthew C. Waxman say some view automated technology developments as a crisis for the laws of war. But provided we start now to incorporate ethical and legal norms into weapons design, the incremental movement from automation to genuine machine autonomy already underway might well be made to serve the ends of law on the battlefield.
The female veterans who filed the lawsuit say combat exclusion is unfair and outdated, based on stereotypes, inhibits recognition and promotion of servicewomen—and ignores the realities of the modern battlefield, says Gayle Tzemach Lemmon.
Authors: Stephen D. Biddle, Jeffrey A. Friedman, and Jacob Shapiro International Security
Examining the decline of violence in Iraq at the end of 2007, Stephen Biddle, Jeffrey A. Friedman, and Jacob Shapiro argue, "A synergistic interaction between the surge and the [Sunni] Awakening was required for violence to drop as quickly and widely as it did: both were necessary; neither was sufficient."
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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.
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