By: Ken Menkhaus | Feature
Although Somalia’s eight-year political transition is scheduled to end later this month, most of the country remains beyond the control of the central government. In fact, for most Somalis, informal, local self-governance is the only political order they have ever known. What does “governance without government” look like in Somalia, and what role might it play in the country’s ongoing task of state revival?
By: Robert D. Lamb | Feature
Many of Pakistan’s formal governance structures barely function in some parts of the country, leaving locals to fend for themselves or turn to nonstate groups for services and help. But while Pakistanis’ frustration with their leaders does give an opening to militant, terrorist and criminal groups to exploit those grievances, most such groups either do not take advantage of the opening or try to but ultimately fail.
By: Khaled Fattah | Feature
By the time the Arab Spring reached Yemen, the country was already a fractured political entity that, while avoiding collapse, remained stubbornly resistant to stabilization. In the context of state fragility, Yemen’s armed nonstate actors have flourished in spaces of disorder and created parallel power centers, raising fears that the threat of transnational terrorism emanating from the country could grow even more pronounced.
By: Richard Gowan | Column
Is the EU about to engage in a proxy war in the Sahara? In late-July, European foreign ministers directed EU officials to come up with “concrete proposals” for supporting an African stabilization force in Mali, where Islamist separatists have seized the north and the south has been in political turmoil since a coup in March. But what can the EU do to contain and resolve these problems?
By: Andrew Exum | Column
A series of recent articles have noted the absence of any discussion of the Afghanistan War in the U.S. presidential campaign, with President Barack Obama avoiding the subject and GOP candidate Mitt Romney yet to articulate an Afghanistan policy. Still, there is a precedent that might help us predict how a President Romney would approach Afghanistan: Obama’s approach, upon taking office, to Iraq.