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Thread: Horn of Africa historical (pre-2011): catch all thread

  1. #161
    Council Member Ken White's Avatar
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    Default That cuts both ways...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    Both Taarof and diplomacy have their own arcane and circuitous rules and conventions, and where they overlap all kinds of confusions are possible...but if they were assuming from the start that a bluff was on, it could easily have fallen into the category of seeing what they expected to see.
    Misapprehensions on both sides due to both Diplomatese and Taarof are more than probable (which is why both create many problems...). No question, as I said, that Saddam was going in regardless. We'll likely never know what was in Glaspie's or Saddam's mind. Pretty much irrelevant in any event.

    What I did learn in the ME is that little is as it seems, far more so than is the case in Asia and still more than in the west which is not blameless in that regard.
    Last edited by Ken White; 04-22-2010 at 01:33 PM.

  2. #162
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    When did Saddam need a green light for anything? I'm surprised - maybe I shouldn't be - that this Glaspie angle still has legs after all these years. We know that Saddam intended to take Kuwait from the beginning and we know he implemented a successful deception campaign to fool regional leadership and US policymakers, despite the clear warnings that were given.
    Supporting "time-limited, scope limited military actions" for 20 years.

  3. #163
    Council Member Ken White's Avatar
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    Default All true. The Glaspie bit still has legs because the knowledge

    of Taarof in the ME keeps it going there and thus worldwide by those not disposed to love America or Americans as an excuse / apologia and a way to espouse a conspiracy theory or two and blame the US for gross malfeasance (or dumb incompetence...).

    I thought that was obvious but apparently not...

  4. #164
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Entropy View Post
    I'm surprised - maybe I shouldn't be - that this Glaspie angle still has legs after all these years.
    If your default approach is to assume a conspiracy, and to assume that all things are directed by and manipulated by the US (or the Jews, the Vatican, the Templars, the Trilateral Commission, the Illuminati, etc), the Glaspie charges make perfect sense, and are in fact necessary for the sustenance of the illusion. We know, after all that as a mere Arab Saddam could only respond to manipulation or provocation from the West, and could not possibly initiate action of his own accord in pursuit of his own goals...

    ...yeah, right.

    Another curious bit...

    The main lesson Bush II learned from Bush I was to not let a war end too quickly.
    That suggests rather strongly that the war was artificially extended for domestic political purposes, a conclusion not supported by any evidence I'm aware of. Seems to me that Bush II was all too eager to have the war end quickly, even to the extent of prematurely declaring it over (who can forget "mission accomplished"). The war was sustained not because anyone in the US didn't want it to end, but because the other parties failed to cooperate... funny how that happens sometimes.

  5. #165
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    Default The Quiet War in the Horn of Africa

    Winning Hearts and Minds in Kenya?

    Entry Excerpt:

    "Winning Hearts and Minds?" Understanding the Relationship between Aid and Security in Kenya - Mark Bradbury and Michael Kleinman, Feinstein International Center.

    This case study on Kenya, researched and written by Mark Bradbury and Michael Kleinman, is the first in a series of publications presenting the findings of a two-year FIC comparative study on the relationship between aid and security in northeastern Kenya and in five provinces of Afghanistan. The overall study has focused in particular on trying to determine the effectiveness of aid in promoting stabilization and security objectives, including by helping to "win hearts and minds" of local populations. (For more information and links to publications related to the study see the Aid and Security project page.)
    Since the late 1990's Kenya's large and thinly populated northeastern region bordering Somalia has become a focus for US government efforts in Africa to counter terrorism, mitigate violent extremism and promote stability and governance. This paper examines the effectiveness of one aspect of those efforts, namely the aid projects implemented by US Civil Affairs teams deployed from the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) in Garissa and Wajir districts in North Eastern province, and Lamu district in Coast province. The paper argues that these activities were useful at a tactical level in terms of facilitating the US military's entry into regions of potential concern, and in helping them to acquire local knowledge and connections. However, it also highlights some of the limitations at a strategic level of using foreign aid as a tool for countering terrorism or insurgencies and promoting stability and security. For example, the research found that these small-scale and scattered projects did little to win hearts and minds or change perceptions of the US in the communities where the projects were implemented. There was also little evidence that the projects had contributed to improved security by addressing some of the perceived underlying causes of terrorism and violent extremism in the region.
    Read the entire report at the Feinstein International Center.



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