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Thread: Poverty & Militancy do not mix!

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Poverty & Militancy do not mix!

    Landed via Twitter a reference to an academic paper 'Poverty and Support for Militant Politics: Evidence from Pakistan':https://www.princeton.edu/~jns/publi...istan_AJPS.pdf

    First, Pakistanis are weakly negative toward a range of militant groups. Second, poor Pakistanis dislike militant groups more than their middle-class counterparts. Third, this effect is likely driven by exposure to the externalities of militant violence, as it is stronger among the urban poor, who are most exposed to the negative externalities of terrorist violence; and stronger among the poor living in urban areas that suffered militant violence in the year before our survey. These results call into question conventional views about the perceived correlation between economic status and militant attitudes in Pakistan and other countries.....

    If our results hold true in other countries, they suggest that it is the poor who may be the most natural allies in campaigns to delegitimize militant groups.

    Second, it is unlikely that improving the material well-being of individuals will reduce support for violent political organizations.
    davidbfpo

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    I'm always happy when I see more evidence attacking this myth. There is a perception the West that the poor are inclined to commit crimes as though money alone equates to your values and drives your behavior. Worse we assume if we, clear, hold, and "build" we will address underlying issues, so we have a doctrine partially based on this myth. Thanks for sharing.

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    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Moore View Post
    I'm always happy when I see more evidence attacking this myth. There is a perception the West that the poor are inclined to commit crimes as though money alone equates to your values and drives your behavior. Worse we assume if we, clear, hold, and "build" we will address underlying issues, so we have a doctrine partially based on this myth. Thanks for sharing.
    I think it has to do with our view about ourselves. We partly do believe that we are the good guys, that we are doing good things, that we are trying to help others and that a lot of problems would be solved if the poor and uneducated just could understand that. The crux of the issue is this is not only not true but even the other way around.

    I wonder if we might not miss a trend also visible in the last century in the former colonies. Maybe it is the case that more educated people not burdened by poverty and the struggle for survival have more time, interest and dedication for broader (political) goals. That those goals can differ alot from those of the "West" is obvious.

    P.S: If we look at this forum I guess that the relative level of eduction should also not be too poor either. To some extent it is somewhat of a mirror.
    Last edited by Firn; 08-11-2012 at 12:50 PM.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

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    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    The "poor" become politically decisive if someone has enough money (or as in Zimbabwe, the power to promise them booty) to harness them for his/her political purposes.

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    Council Member Surferbeetle's Avatar
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    Some interesting themes in this thread; the intersections of poverty, wealth, violence, misallocation of resources, and solving problems/building...

    The perceptions of the hoi polloi vs the the perceptions of the few? The numbers of the masses vs the numbers of the few?

    Wasn't a portion of the French Revolution, and isn't a portion of the Arab Spring about these themes? From there it seems to be a short walk to 'solutions/responses' such as Colonialism, the New Deal, community policing (it comes up as neighborhood watch in wiki), COIN, ARRA, and of course Democracy...
    Sapere Aude

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default One word

    It is all about mobilisation in the very widest sense.

    For many here who are of a military background the word can mean something quite different; no, I don't mean railway timetables.

    For those with a LE background the word can mean simply "more people, more trouble" and instinctively take a conservative viewpoint - "please not now".

    As 'Surferbeetle' posted neighbourhood watch is an example of mobilisation; one wonders how LE would respond to neighbourhood change?
    davidbfpo

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    Council Member Surferbeetle's Avatar
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    David,

    Thought you might find this article and link to be of interest, as did I...

    Big data is watching you, By Dr. Gillian Tett, August 10, 2012 5:01 pm, Financial Times, www.ft.com

    But last week, I took part in a seminar organised by America’s Brookings Institution and Blum Center to discuss development and global economics. And now I am looking at that mobile phone with fresh eyes. For what became clear in discussions with aid workers, healthcare officials and US diplomats is that those oft-ignored mobile devices are not just changing the way the western world lives – but changing the lives of poor societies, too. This, in turn, has some intriguing potential to reshape parts of how the global development business is done.

    These days, there are about 2.5 billion people in emerging markets countries who own a mobile phone. In places such as the Philippines, Mexico and South Africa, mobile phone coverage is nearly 100 per cent of the population, while in Uganda it is 85 per cent. That has not only left people better connected than before – which has big political and commercial implications – it has also made their movements, habits and ideas far more transparent. And that is significant, given that it has often been extremely hard to monitor poor societies in the past, particularly when they are scattered over large regions.

    Consider what happened two-and-a-half years ago when the Haitian earthquake struck. The population scattered when the tremors hit, leaving aid agencies scrambling to work out where to send help. Traditionally, they could only have done this by flying over the affected areas, or travelling on the ground. But some researchers at Columbia University and the Karolinska Institute took a different tack: they started tracking the Sim cards inside mobile phones owned by Haitians, to work out where their owners were located or moving. That helped them to “accurately analyse the destination of more than 600,000 people who were displaced from Port au Prince”, as a UN report says. Then, when a cholera epidemic hit Haiti later, the same researchers tracked the Sim cards again, to put medicine in the correct locations – and prevent the disease from spreading.

    Aid groups are not just tracking those physical phones; they are also starting to watch levels of mobile phone usage and patterns of bill payment, too. If this suddenly changes, it can indicate rising levels of economic distress, far more accurately than, say, GDP data. Inside the UN, the secretary general is now launching a project called Global Pulse to screen some of the 2.5 quintillion bytes of so-called “big data” being generated each day around the world, including on social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. These sites are strikingly popular in parts of the emerging markets world; Indonesia, for example, has one of the most Twitter-addicted populations on the planet. Thus if the UN (or anyone else) spots a sudden increase in certain keywords, this can also provide an early warning of distress. References to food or ethnic strife, for example, may indicate the onset of famine or civil unrest. Similarly, medical researchers have learnt in the past couple of years that social media references to infection area are powerful early warning signal of epidemics – and more timely than official alerts from government doctors.
    Global Pulse, http://www.unglobalpulse.org

    Global Pulse is an innovation initiative of the UN Secretary-General, harnessing today's new world of digital data and real-time analytics to gain a better understanding of changes in human well-being. Global Pulse hopes to contribute a future in which access to better information sooner makes it possible to keep international development on track, protect the world's most vulnerable populations, and strengthen resilience to global shocks.

    Global Pulse functions as an innovation laboratory, bringing together expertise from UN agencies, governments, academia, and the private sector to research, develop, test and share tools and approaches for harnessing real-time data for more effective and efficient policy action.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 08-11-2012 at 04:40 PM. Reason: Copied to Social Media & UW thread.
    Sapere Aude

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    Posted by davidbfpo,

    As 'Surferbeetle' posted neighbourhood watch is an example of mobilisation; one wonders how LE would respond to neighbourhood change?
    LE has pursued this effort in at least a couple of ways I'm aware of, first is implementation of the "broken glass" theory in NYC.

    Second, and perhaps more interesting as discussed in Stephen Covey's new book, "The Third Alternative" where the police pursued a different approach that significantly reduced crime that was much less in your face than the "broken glass" approach.

    Mobilization for General Purpose Forces means one thing, while mobilization for Special Forces means another. I suspect ours falls much more in line with what you're implying from a law enforcement side. Neighborhood watch is a form of mobilization, and so are flash mobs, etc.

    Bottom line remains, it is arrogant on our part to assume those that are not well off are prone to illegal behavior. In many cases the poor will give you the shirt off their back and have much stronger values than many of the well to do white collar criminals on Wall Street or the Square Mile in London.

    Of course we should continue to endeavor to eradicate poverty for humane reasons, but we can do that without disrespecting the poor and indirectly referring to them as criminals. The underlying cause for crime I suspect more than any other cause is an individual's value system. It just so happens that some segments in our inner cities (in the U.S.) have extremely poor values and they happen to be poor financially.

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    Default Rethinking the Relationship Between Poverty and Terrorism

    Rethinking the Relationship Between Poverty and Terrorism

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    Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
    This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Donít Dismiss Povertyís Role in Terrorism Yet

    A Time magazine article from February 2014, with the sub-title The studies are mixed, but our analysis should not be hasty:http://time.com/3694305/poverty-terrorism/
    davidbfpo

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    A Time magazine article from February 2014, with the sub-title The studies are mixed, but our analysis should not be hasty:http://time.com/3694305/poverty-terrorism/
    There is no one size fits all model, but this article seems to be desperate attempt to draw a link between terrorism and poverty where research so far indicates there isn't one. There wasn't one fact in the article that refuting the existing evidence; however, I support researchers to keep researching and studying this factor without bias. However, from a counterterrorism strategy perspective, the military shouldn't base its strategies on unfounded assumptions. To a large degree we have done this, and we continue to wonder why the results have been disappointing.

    Regardless, the U.S. continues to support the UN's Millennium Goals to reduce poverty, and we should continue to do so for reasons that have nothing to do with terrorism. As a nation we care about the progress of humanity. It speaks volumes of who we are as a people, especially when contrasted with the state behaviors of Russia and China.

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Do poverty and a lack of education produce terrorism?

    Thread re-opened after an alert to this article by Bruce Hoffman 'Sorry, Politicians, But Fighting Poverty Isn’t Going to Defeat Terrorism; Despite Popular Political Rhetoric, Many Terrorists Are Well Educated and Well Off'.

    He ends with:
    The reasons why someone picks up a gun or throws a bomb represent an ineluctably personal choice born variously of grievance and frustration; religious piety or the desire for systemic socio-economic change; irredentist conviction or commitment to some utopian or millenarian ideal. The forces that impel individuals to become terrorists are thus timeless
    Link:http://www.zocalopublicsquare.org/20...1dkJZ4.twitter
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 08-02-2016 at 10:39 PM. Reason: 9,227v
    davidbfpo

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