APSNet for 29 November 2007
Austral Peace and Security Network (APSNet)
Twice weekly report from the Nautilus Institute at RMIT, Australia.
Thursday 29 November 2007
- No Walking Away from Afghans: Defence Chief
- After the 2006 Crisis: Australian Interests in Timor-Leste
- Poor to Bear Brunt of Warming
- UN Envoy Says Indonesian Torture Widespread
- How the US Got its Philippine Bases Back
- Iraq Deal Eyes Long US Presence
- Upper House Votes to End Japan’s Mission in Iraq
Austral Policy Forum 07-23A: Abu Sayyaf and US and Australian Military Intervention in the Southern Philippines – Carolin Liss
No Walking Away from Afghans: Defence Chief, Brendan Nicholson, Age, 2007-11-29
Defence Force chief Angus Houston has warned that a new and broader strategy is needed to win the war in Afghanistan. “If we look at some of the stabilisation operations we’re involved in at the moment we need to work very closely with out colleagues at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, at AusAID, the federal Police and, of course, all the services within the defence force.” He said the defence force learned big lessons from its operations in East Timor after violence erupted there last year and young soldiers were confronted by gangs who quickly worked out the limitations on the soldiers by their strict rules of engagement.
- U.S. Notes Limited Progress in Afghan War: Strategic Goals Unmet, White House Concludes, Karen Deyoung, Washington Post, 2007-11-25
After the 2006 Crisis: Australian Interests in Timor-Leste, Bob Lowry, Strategic Insights 38 – Australian Strategic Policy Institute, 2007-11-27
The paper, authored by Bob Lowry, examines a range of Australian security interests in Timor-Leste, the factors contributing to the state collapse in 2006, and lessons for Australia in the handling of that crisis. Key conclusions address overall measures that Timor-Leste will need to implement to prevent a re-occurrence of the crisis of 2006.
Poor to Bear Brunt of Warming, Stephen Fitzpatrick, Australian, 2007-11-28
Indonesia’s 80 million people living below or just above the poverty line are facing a rapid spread of killer disease, major water shortages and severe malnutrition from global warming. A new UN report warns that Indonesia will be among the hardest hit by climate disaster under current assessments.
- Human Development Report 2007/2008: Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
UN Envoy Says Indonesian Torture Widespread, Marianne Kearney, Financial Times, 2007-11-26
Torture in Indonesian detention centres is widespread said a special UN investigator Friday, after visiting police lock-ups and prisons across the country in a two-week trip.
How the US Got its Philippine Bases Back, Herbert Docena, Asia Times Online, 2007-11-27
The US sees China as the rival whose rise it must prevent and whose military power it must contain. One of the countries in which the US has been deepening its military presence in is the Philippines – considered by US analysts as firmly located within the strategic area around China where decisive battles could erupt in certain war-planning scenarios. Though the US military officially vacated the Philippines and its mammoth Subic Bay base in 1991, since 2001 it has moved to re-integrate the Philippines firmly within what it now calls its “global defense posture”.
Inside the Surge: The American Military Finds New Allies, But at What Cost? Jon Lee Anderson, New Yorker, 2007-11-19
In February the surge began. The new strategy is meant to prepare the ground for Iraqi security forces to replace the Americans. But the Iraqis do not all belong to the official, government forces. With American assistance, several hundred armed Sunni volunteers called the Ghazaliya Guardians were gradually assuming police duties. Such U.S.-approved Sunni forces had begun to sprout up everywhere. Many of them, to the dismay of some Shiites, included former insurgents.
- Iraq Deal Eyes Long US Presence, Al Jazeera, 2007-11-27
- U.S. Military to Hire 10,000 Iraqi Neighborhood Guards, then Cap Program, Cara Buckley, International Herald Tribune, 2007-11-28
Upper House Votes to End Japan’s Mission in Iraq, International Herald Tribune, 2007-11-28
The upper house of Parliament voted Wednesday to halt the Japanese Air Force’s mission in Iraq, intensifying the opposition bloc’s standoff with the government over Tokyo’s role in military missions abroad. The vote Wednesday came after the political battle here over Japan’s mission in the Indian Ocean in support of U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan.
Abu Sayyaf and US and Australian Military Intervention in The Southern Philippines, Carolin Liss, Austral Policy Forum 07-23A, 2007-11-29
Carolin Liss of Murdoch University writes that under a new Status of Forces Agreement “Australia will only be the second country to be allowed to send substantial numbers of military personnel to the Philippines”. US forces operate alongside Philippines government forces (AFP) targeting the Islamic insurgency in the southern Philippines, the Abu Sayyaf in particular. However, AFP operations “have led to the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people. These operations have therefore contributed to the suffering of the local population and have undoubtedly increased local support for groups such as the MILF and the Abu Sayyaf”. Liss concludes that “insufficient economic and humanitarian assistance and the continuous use of military force to ‘pacify’ and integrate the south into the main body of the Philippine nation-state, is unlikely to succeed”.