21st Century U.S. Foreign Policy: Dynamics of Change
Anthology Fall Semester 2013
Views of China and Africa: The Search for Security Social Media and China’s Public Diplomacy: A Path to the Future Gong Chenzhou, Fudan University Towards a Unified Korea—China’s New Korea Policy Yang Yuanchen, Tsinghua University South Africa: U.S. Window to Sub-Saharan Africa Taylor Smith, Emerson College U.S. Security Interests Somalia: Policy and Strategy for Re-Engaging the Failed State Austin L. Manor, University of New Hampshire
Robert E. Henderson, Associate Faculty
21st Century U.S. Foreign Policy: Dynamics of Change© A class offered by The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars Illustrations Front Cover:
The Albrect Durrer Engraving of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse c.1498 was created in the period immediately preceeding the wars of the Protestant Reformation (30 and 80 years) that were brought to a close by the Treaty of Westphalia c.1648. The Treaty provided the modern system of diplomacy with accepted norms for communication among sovereign states with a foundation in law and protocols of reciprocity. This alternative to interminable war gave partial release from the plague, famine, conflict, and death as a cycle of national existence was grasped by the Europeans as a way out and a hope. The picture serves as a leitmotif for this class. Relief from the Four Horsemen should serve as a guiding principle of statecraft, and often, does not.
Last Page and Inside Back Cover:
From 2002 to 2012 over 100 students of The Washington Center Course on 21st Century U.S. Foreign Policy scored A- or higher on their final project. These policy papers serve as inspiration and as a resource for students in this class. The students have benefitted from the work of peers that preceeded them and many built foundations for careers and onward education from their experience while at The Washington Center.
The Expanded Transition Paradigm is based losely on the work of Guillermo O’Donnell, Larry Diamond, Seymour Martin Linz, and many others associated with the National Endowment for Democracy and the Journal of Democracy. Carl Gershman, President of the NED since its founding in 1983 was the original source for the idea of a simple arc of transition. The authors cited are referenced in the Syllabus for the Class and have no responosibility for the elaboration of their theories as depicted in this Paradigm
©Robert E. Henderson January 6, 2014 Washington, D.C.
Views of China and Africa: The Search for Security
Preface and Acknowledgements
Social Media and China’s Public Diplomacy: A Path to the Future Gong Chenzhou, Fudan University
Towards a Unified Korea—China’s New Korea Policy Yang Yuanchen, Tsinghua University
South Africa: U.S. Window to Sub-Saharan Africa Taylor Smith, Emerson College
U.S. Security Interests Somalia: Policy and Strategy for Re-Engaging the Failed State Austin L. Manor, University of New Hampshire
Paper Abstracts from the Class of Fall Semester 2013
Robert E. Henderson, Associate Faculty
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Preface U.S. national security in the 21st Century must address the challenges of globalization, the rise of alternate sources of political and economic influence, the seeming incapacity and limited relevance of international organizations combined with their indispensability, diminished options and a shrinking range of action in critical regions for U.S. decision-makers, and domestic frustration with seeming U.S.G. incompetence. Is this the most peaceful and prosperous era in the history of the species, or, is the international system teetering on the edge of an abyss similar to that faced at the end of the Roman Empire and the beginning of the Dark Ages? How will you be employed in five, ten, or fifteen years? How should you think about the international system and your career? What can a Student do to get ready? This course prepares students to disseminate their ideas. Each student chooses a paper topic upon which to concentrate during the term. The formal presentation of the “Proposal” before the class and the original Paper the student writes will focus on this topic. The proposal and paper will examine a policy challenge to the United States or a country of their chosing. Students may choose to concentrate on an international institution or a functional issue from the array of contemporary national security and democratic development questions. Each student will become an expert on that topic, teaching the class what they have learned and what policy recommendations they would make for the U.S. government. Each student will be expected to articulate why they believe their recommendations are correct, what other options have been considered and discarded, and defend their policy recommendation(s) on the basis of costs and benefits to the United States or the international entity or polity about which they have chosen to write.
Learning Objectives Knowledge • The course assures students a common grounding in the history and dynamics of the international system. • Students will acquire key concepts, definitions, and stocks of information. They learn techniques of how to develop policy, use original resources to support policy recommendations, and learn methodologies for evaluating national security interests. Skills • Students will demonstrate an ability to analyze an array of sources and ideas on contemporary U.S. foreign policy and write foreign policy proposals using correct grammar, proven resources, effective organization, and a readable style. • Students will prepare presentations, both written and oral, with equally effective organization and coherence. Values • Students will become familiar with the lexicon used to present formal policy recommendations and how that lexicon frames debates over policy choices. • Will analyze “national interests” in determining ethical bounds governing international debates while advancing and defending U.S. national security with an array of policy tools.
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Acknowledgements It has been my privilege to teach this class on U.S. foreign policy for the Washington Center in various iterations since the 1979. Over the years I have tried to disseminate the techniques of instruction for use by others publishing in the Foreign Affairs classroom series among other outlets. The objective of the course remains the sameâ€Śto help students learn how to formulate U.S. foreign policy for professional audiences while building their networks of contacts who might prove useful in the employment search later on. In the last several years of the class foreign students have chosen to write about their home countries or regional challenges from a regional perspective. While these often prove difficult topics to manage, they are not impossible and the richness of the dialogue and the contrasting templates for policy making that foreign powers require provides our debates with dynamics that are powerful teaching tools. The quality of the analysis writing by these undergraduates continues to impress and provides firm assurance that the defense of this and other republics will be in good hands as the current generation of foreign policy experts passes from the scene.
January 7, 2014
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Social Media and China’s Public Diplomacy: A Path to the Future
CHENZHUO GONG Fudan University
In recent years, China—perceiving itself suffering from misjudgment and deserving more respect—has been vigorously pursuing a better international image. The rapid growth of Confucius Institutes and Classrooms that promote Chinese culture overseas, the generous aid to Africa and the global expansion of its media properties are the most notable efforts. However, scholars point out that the reluctance to develop social media tools for its public diplomacy limits the Chinese government’s capacity to directly engage a foreign public, a formula which in recent years has shown positive effects for other countries. This paper reviews the International Information Program of the United States and explores the possibility for Chinese authorities to include social media into its PD arsenal.
Currently on t he international stage, there are two parallel trends transforming the landscape of public diplomacy: the flourishing of social media and the rise of China. A burgeoning phenomenon since the beginning of 21st century, social media is everywhere nowadays. Nearly one in four people in the world use social networks in 2013 (eMarketer 2013). 1 This suggests that if “the social media empire” were a country, it already boasts the world’s largest population. Beyond its extensive reach, social media is revolutionizing the way people think, empowering the marginalized and even helping to spark uprisings (Kenna 2011, 3). The pervasive influence of social media unavoidably affects the sphere of PD, as practitioners and scholars alike manifest profound interest in the “game-changer” (McHale 2009). PD scholar Matt Armstrong commented that, “In this age of mass information and precision-guided media, ignoring social media is surrendering the high ground in the enduring battle to influence minds around the world.” (Amstrong 2009) At the other end of the spectrum, China is flexing its soft power through a wide range of PD channels, which span from culture, to foreign aid and international broadcasting. The traditional balance of power in the “war of ideas” has been challenged by the rise of “the Middle 1
The percentage seems to be moderate, but regarding the Internet penetration rate of a mere 35 percent worldwide, a quarter is not trivial. For more detailed statistics on the Internet Penetration Rate, see http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats.htm
Chenzhuo Gong is a junior student at Fudan University, pursuing a major in international politics. He has a particular interest in cyberspace dynamics and the constructivist approach, and is currently working at CCTV America in Washington, DC.
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Kingdom”. Whether China poses a tangible threat to the western hegemony remains a question, its PD campaign has, at least, touched on a nerve in the U.S. The labels of charm-offensive, assertive or aggressive often go hand-in-hand with every move of China’s PD program. 2 The high-profile narrative “going out” and the new Office of Public Diplomacy established in 2010 are further evidences of China’s “assertiveness”. The two threads---one exogenous to the PD arena, the other endogenous---have yet to converge. The usual “second adopter” (Gregory 2011, 362)---the U.S. government---has already tapped into the potential of social media diplomacy. However, the risk-averse Chinese authorities are still lingering around the gate of social media, with virtually no official presence on either Facebook or Twitter. 3 This paper will explore the possibility for China to capitalize on the popularity of social media.
Review of China’s Public Diplomacy
When it comes to evaluating PD, two main roads diverge (Matwiczak 2010, 16). One is to measure the output of PD effort, for example how many foreign students have enrolled in Confucius Institutes; the other goes beyond the activity per se and seeks to assess its outcome, often at an epistemological level. In the case of Confucius Institutes, a positive outcome would be participants’ increased understanding and favorability towards China, or more fundamentally, whether the presence of Confucius Institutes improves China’s favorability in surrounding communities. The output approach is easier to quantify and track, often adopted by practitioners to justify funding. However, a high output does not necessarily bring forth positive PD outcomes; the soaring number of students does not lead to an indisputable victory in the battlefield of PD. The outcome approach, which “gets to the heart of assessing the effectiveness of public diplomacy” (Matwiczak 2010, 13), is more reliable in this regard. In terms of its output, China’s PD program appears to be a booming success. Confucius Institutes and Classrooms, in a mere nine years, have swept across 117 countries, with a staggering number of 435 Institutes and 644 Classrooms (Confucius Institute Online 2013). Beijing pledged worldwide $189 billion for foreign aid and government-sponsored investment activities in 2011 (Charles, Xiao and Eric 2013, 70), investing $75 billion on aid and projects in Africa alone from 2000 to 2011 (Austin, et al. 2013). China’s media property CCTV boasts three major global offices in Beijing, Washington, and Nairobi, and more than 70 a dditional international bureaus. Its program claims a reach of millions in 137 countries (Nelson 2013). In an era when Voice of America and BBC World Service budgets are battered by funding cutbacks, CCTV’s output is staggering. However, when it comes to the outcome of China’s PD, the result may be more disturbing than reassuring. Unlike its western counterparts, China’s PD practitioners have paid greater attention to improving their image. In an online exchange in 2013, Qin Gang, China’s 2 For relevant articles and reports, see ““PD Under Secretary-Designates advice: Watch China” Adam Clayton Powell III , CPD Blog, March 27, 2012, Available online at: http://uscpublicdiplomacy.org/index.php/newswire/cpdblog_detail/pd_under_secretary-designates_advice_watch_china/ ; “China Flexes Its Soft Power”, David Shambaugh, NY Times, June7, 2010, Available online at: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/08/opinion/08iht-edshambaugh.html?_r=0; “Fill the Public Diplomacy Leadership Vacuum,” Helle C. Dale, The Heritage Foundation, October 3, 2010, Available online at: http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2012/02/fill-the-public-diplomacy-leadership-vacuum; “Creating an Independent International Strategic Communication Center for America,” The Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Business Plan, March 2012, PP.9, Available online at: http://mountainrunner.us/files/2012/03/SAGE-PLAN-Final.pdf 3 The only exception is the Facebook account of Chinese Embassy in Myanmar.
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Director General of Information Department, explained public diplomacy as “an important means to introduce China and improve national image”. 4 And the Public Diplomacy Forums in 2011 and 2013 also revolved around the concept of image. 5 Nevertheless, through a cross-year analysis, this paper finds that China’s favorability in 16 sample countries was in flux from 2007 to 2013. The image of China is in an embarrassing situation, compared to the country's booming economic power and the reputation it attempts to shape. In 2008, favorability towards China plummeted to the lowest point in the sample period, from a median favorability rate of 44.5 percent in 2007 to 38 percent. After 2008, there was an incremental increase in favorability in most of the sample countries, with the median reaching its peak of 55 pe rcent in 2011. In the past two years, the favorability rate sees a cl ear pattern of recession. Among the 16 sample countries, only Mexico, Indonesia and Turkey exhibit a positive trend with an average 6 percent increase. 6 In another survey conducted by the BBC, of the 25 countries surveyed in 2013, 12 hol d positive views of China, 13 negative views. China’s “performance” remains strong in Africa and BRIC countries with strongly positive views in general. However, in the EU, the U.S., Canada, as well as neighboring countries like Japan and Korea, China suffers from an “extremely negative view” (BBC 2013). The flux of favorability partly points to a PD campaign that has yet to claim success. The high outputs in cultural diplomacy, foreign aid and international broadcasting have not been translated into any tangible outcome in terms of a more positive image, which China has arguably put the most weight on. Even though China has been scrambling to improve its tarnished image, the outcome remains, at best, unclear. 7
Facebook Outreach: a Case Study of IIP
IIP, the Bureau of International Information Programs, is one of three bureaus that fall under the authority of the U.S. Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. It consists of over one hundred tech-savvy staff along with myriad contractors. Its mission is to keep a finger on the pulse of the latest trends in technology and become the creative engine of PD. To better understand the role and limits of IIP necessitates placing it against the historic backdrop. The functions of IIP sit at the confluence of several narratives: most notably, the wax and wane of PD in the U.S., the surge of New Public Diplomacy and the advancement of technological frontiers. Under the iron veil of the Cold War, PD had been the central pillar of U.S. foreign policies. The U.S. Information Agency played a significant role to “win the hearts and minds” in the era marked by containment and ideological confrontations. However, the demise of the Soviet Union has shaken the very foundation where the USIA, anti-Soviet “propaganda machine” (Richards 2001), gained its premier legitimacy. The fate of the agency was already sealed (N. J. Cull 2013, 129). In 2009, as PD receded to the backstage, the major elements of the USIA were folded into the State Department (N. J. Cull 2012); and USIA’s Bureau of Information, trimmed off some functions, became the prototype of IIP (Cincotta 2004, 139). The 4
Available online at: http://www.chinanews.com/gn/2013/02-22/4588352.shtml The topic for the 2013 Forum was set as “Advocacy and Dialogue: China’s stories and image in the Public Diplomacy era” And the focus of the forum was heavily steered towards “how to use public diplomacy to improve China’s image”. Available online at: http://gb.cri.cn/42071/2013/06/26/6611s4161486.htm 6 See Figure 1 and Table 1 in the Appendix 7 There are certain limitations to the method of poll data in PD evaluation: a) opinion is inherently variable and may only reflect how an individual is feeling at a given point in time. b) The margin of error cannot be avoided. c) The change of favorability is not solely determined by public diplomacy efforts, but influenced by a number of other variables. Poll data of favorability cannot precisely evaluate public diplomacy due to the existence of mixed variables. 5
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turning point for PD came on the tragedy of 9/11. Deteriorating favorability in the Middle East had created a natural haven for terrorists; U.S. national security was at stake. To make up for a decade of complacency, Washington attempted to reinvigorate America’s underutilized soft power. It urged “effective public diplomacy”---“a different and more comprehensive approach” in “a war of ideas to win the battle against international terrorism.” (The White House 2002, 31) However, the meta-narrative of the “war on t error” dwarfed the minor outcome PD is able to deliver. The U.S. image was precipitously declining abroad (Ham 2008, 141). 8 The shrinking favorability provided a wonderful stage for PD practitioners. IIP is one of the beneficiaries. Its budget almost doubled from to 2008 t o 2010, r eaching more than $102 million in 2010. The momentum of growth, though constrained by a stringent economy, has remained strong in recent years (Department of State 2013, 293). Another narrative shaping IIP is the sunrise of the New Public Diplomacy. Instead of “peddling information to foreigners” (Melissen 2005, 9), states are looking towards engaging with foreign citizens. A radical departure from the Cold War doctrine that features state-to-people communication, the New Public Diplomacy emphasizes the people-to-people relationship. Meanwhile, the government no l onger has a monopoly in engaging with foreign audiences; a broad variety of actors, such as non-governmental organizations, private companies and citizens are springing up. Facing the threat, PD practitioners are looking to new thinking and methods. IIP, the innovation hub in the State Department, wins greater attention. Apart from the resurgence of PD in the national strategy and the emergence of New Public Diplomacy, technology advancement also favors IIP. With the advent of Web 2.0, vi ral communication, social media and consumer-driven content have overtaken their predecessors--email and websites---to become the defining characteristics of the Internet. In 2008, the Obama administration gave social media high priority after witnessing their utility in his presidential campaign. IIP, with its technical expertise, came across a historic opportunity. Driven by the positive environment, IIP began to hit the fast lane. 9 Now, IIP claims an extensive social media presence with a reach of 1.4 billion. 209 out of 294 U.S Embassies and Consulates have been on Facebook, 122 of them on Twitter (U.S. Department of State 2013). And IIP, as the central coordinating body and the arsenal of PD materials, sends out its best items in a daily social media feed, while each Embassy or Consulate also produces their own messages that are tailored to the taste of the local audience. In the case of the Embassy in Jakarta, it has skillfully incorporated FB into its PD efforts by relating it to offline events. For example, the Embassy has attracted a large local audience by providing tangible rewards donated by Microsoft and Starbucks. Specifically, in a contest that offered trips to the U.S., the fan count doubled to more than 60,000 i n a month (Ciolek 2010, 16). With effective use of FB along with other social media, IIP has made significant contributions to the State Department’s digital diplomacy outreach efforts. However, the utility of this approach was questioned in an official inspection of IIP in 2013. There are a multitude of problems haunting IIP’s FB outreach (OIG Report 2013), including: • A slow response time constrained by security clearance. • The antithesis between policy dissemination and audience tastes. 8
In 2007, only 9 percent of Turks and 30 percent of Germans had a positive view of the United States, according to Pew Research Global Attitudes Project 9 It is noteworthy that IIP provides a great variety of functions other than Facebook outreach, including the maintenance of embassy websites, the promotion of American Corners and U.S. Speaker/Expert Program.
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The stagnation in designing reliable metrics to evaluate FB outreach. An over-emphasis on t he raw numbers of fans with an engagement rate of just over 2 percent. The controversial campaign to buy fans with over $630,000 put further questions to “the low-cost halo” that often surrounds social media. • An opaque group of audience: What is the key audience of FB outreach: elite or youth? What percentage of resources should be allocated to the two groups respectively? At the same time, IIP, as a whole, is circumscribed by, among other things, the problems of functional overlap with other agencies, the lack of management over contractors that constitute 45 percent of total staffing, a lack in leadership and strategic vision, and limited interagency cooperation characterized by “tribal cultures” (Gregory 2011, 14). To provide a clearer picture to the problems faced by IIP, this paper provides a threefold classification to the problems: institutional problems, strategic problems and inherent problems. 10 The first two can be resolved with institutional surgeries or clarifications at the strategic level, but the last type of problem is rooted in inherent tensions. Security clearance cannot be surrendered for the sake of response time; policy dissemination lingers as determined by the nature of PD; and “the long-term nature of PD work” (OIG Report 2013, 18) defies any accurate evaluation. Another inherent problem that was not mentioned in the inspection report is “sustainability”. The essence of New Public Diplomacy is “building quality and sustainable relationships with foreign publics as an end in itself.” (Zaharna 2007, 217) However, in the fastpaced world of social media, to sustain interest and relationships is exceptionally challenging. The new media campaign unleashed during Obama’s visit to Brazil in 2011 produced only a short-lived focus (Ali and David 2011, 6). And based on this paper’s study, the number of people interacting with the FB page of the Embassy in Jakarta is almost the same as the number three years ago, despite the fan base multiplying five times. The average engagement rate is even lower. 11 Facing the controversy, it might be time to re-evaluate social media as a tool of PD: Is it a hype or hope for PD? To provide a clearer evaluation of social media, this paper, referring to a two-way communication model, conducts a systematic analysis to the pros and cons of FB in the realm of PD. 12 The result appears to be mixed, as FB exhibits almost equal numbers of advantages and disadvantages when employed in PD. • •
Why Chinese Embassies Should not Follow the Trend
The war of ideas is not new. Thousands of years ago, the Chinese philosopher Sun Tzu pointed out that a complete and lasting triumph comes only through a sophisticated strategy, one that acts persuasively on the mind of the opponent. Suppose Chinese authorities cast social media aside, it risks ceding the high ground in the global battle of ideas. However, based on the case study of IIP, the author proposes that it would be inadvisable for Chinese Embassies to capitalize on the potential of FB. There are five inherent problems when it comes to applying FB diplomacy to Embassies: the absence of suitable organizational culture, the liability of security clearance, the incapacity to be personable, the potential backfire and the burden of an enormous fan base. Lack of Organizational Culture that Values Social Media 10
See Figure 2 in the appendix for more information. See Figure 3, 4 and 5 in the appendix for more information. 12 See Figure 6 and Table 2 in the appendix for more information. 11
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All bureaucracies---and the Chinese Embassy is no e xception---tend to be risk averse. The conservative nature impedes Embassies from keeping up with trends, which more often than not involve risks. In the case of social media, its open-ended and real-time characters often make “staying inside the bureaucratic cocoon” the most rational choice for Embassies; the stakes to go out are too high. Even in the U.S., the most active government in using social media as diplomacy tools, 13 the resistance in organizational culture still lingers. 14 Proposals existed as early as 2004 that the senior position of IIP should be designated as an assistant secretary, “given the size of the bureau and the responsibilities of the coordinator” (OIG Report 2013, 2). However, after almost a d ecade, the much-anticipated promotion has yet to come. This can be interpreted as an insufficiency of recognition in the Congress and the Department. Akin to the situation in the U.S., China’s FB outreach program, if located in Embassies, may be marginalized in the greater organizational structure. One direct consequence is that the bright brains will shun the social media posts, leaving the quality of FB outreach discounted. The Inherent Tensions between Security and Engagement In FB Diplomacy, the nature of real-time communication demands a f reer mandate for the PD practitioners. Otherwise, constrained by security checks, the quality of engagement will be discounted. However, if the message check is bypassed, an inaccurate message can go viral 15 and cause catastrophic consequences. Indeed, the antithesis between security and engagement is deeply rooted in the structural tensions between the government and social media. A hierarchical structure of top-down messaging represented by the government is inherently incompatible to the horizontal network of social media. Hierarchies have their place. But social media now favors horizontal structures and agile practitioners. To force a bureaucratic structure into FB, that is slow and ill-equipped to new media, would generate more cost than benefit. Success in FB Diplomacy presupposes a quick and accurate response, something Chinese authorities cannot deliver for the moment. A Politicized Organ in a Depoliticized Sphere In the world of social media, being personal is the key to success. Research indicates that connections are best made online when organizations converse in a less-official tone, making them appear more personable and approachable. Indeed, in the top three hundred FB pages ranked by fan counts, U.S. President Barack Obama is the lonely island of a politician in a sea of actors, musicians, athletes and brands (Fanpagelist.com 2013). If Chinese Embassies seek to tap the full potential of FB, a refurbishment of the political jargon is a must. However, to adopt a less obviously governmental style is easier said than done. In the case of China, consistency lies at the core of foreign policy. Every diplomatic actor, from Foreign Ministry Spokesman to the People’s Daily, must strictly stick to a uniform tone. Consistency can be a great advantage in traditional diplomacy. However, in FB diplomacy, it means much less leeway for Chinese Embassies to become personable. From the perspective of 13
Giles Crouch, “Ranking of Governments Engaged in Digital Diplomacy Through Social Media”, April 4, 2012. Available online at: http://www.mediabadger.com/2012/04/ranking-of-governments-engaged-in-digital-diplomacy-through-socialmedia/?goback=%2Egde_2253285_member_177087503#%21, 14 For more discussions, see Jesse Lichtenstein, “Digital Diplomacy”, July 16, 2010 Available online at: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/18/magazine/18web2-0-t.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 15 The author gains the inspiration from a personal conversation with Matthew Wallin, a senior fellow in the American Security Project, also an expert in PD.
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agency theory, Embassies, the PD “agents,” can hardly adopt a personable approach without an overhaul of thinking and strategy from their “principals.” The detached and impersonal tone, which permeates Chinese authorities, is expected to persist in the Embassies’ FB pages. A more fundamental problem is the question of credibility. As Walter Lippmann wrote nearly a century ago, most people don’t choose between true and false messages, they choose between trustworthy and untrustworthy messengers (Lippmann 1922, 223) . In “a contest of competitive credibility” (Nye 2010), any official mouthpiece is never fully trusted, even less when it belongs to the communist faction. 16 Worse still, Chinese Embassies, like its U.S. counterpart, will face the tensions between policy dissemination and audience preferences. Few audiences go to FB in the morning to read the latest Chinese foreign policies. In the essentially depoliticized social media community, a politicized body, that occasionally circulates political propaganda, is doomed to be an anachronism. A Public Diplomacy Practice that Might Backfire The advent of global real-time media has drastically increased the transparency of international politics (Livingston 2002). In light of the not-so-positive image of China in many regions, a FB campaign unleashed by China may backfire in the open marketplace of ideas. At any rate, without the umbrella of censorship to protect itself, Chinese diplomats will be exposed to the strong bastion of anti-Chinese sentiment. More importantly, as China has not revealed any intention to unblock Facebook and Twitter, any official presence on the two platforms will possibility spur a flurry of critiques from both home and abroad. The cost, though indeterminate, is sure to be incurred. “Engagement” With Tens of Thousands of Fans: Forget about It Despite the vague definition of “engagement”, it presumes an interactive and approach, which can be costly. A simple click of a “like” button cannot be defined as engagement in a strict sense; it is too weak to be taken into account. Only a series of “likes,” “comments” and, “sharing” are strong enough to breed substantive changes in people’s minds. The controversy is that the governing logic of any social media site is “weak ties.” As Gladwell illustrated, “Twitter is a way of following (or being followed by) people you may never have met. FB is a tool for efficiently managing your acquaintances, for keeping up w ith the people you would not otherwise be able to stay in touch with. That’s why you can have a thousand ‘friends’ on FB, as you never could in real life.” (Gladwell 2010, 3) 17 However, what PD evangelists anticipate from social media is sowing changes at a cognitive level (e.g. the shift of attitude), or even at a behavioral level (e.g. social movement). This demands strong ties, not the weak ties that prevail in social media. For many, pressing a “like” button on FB is no more than an act of philanthropy, meaning “I have come to the page.” In this way, the grand scale of the Embassies will be an obstacle, instead of an asset, for substantial engagement. On one hand, utterly outnumbered, a stray staff or two working to maintain FB pages in the Embassies cannot realize a total engagement with the foreign audience. On the other hand, as staff being preoccupied by providing decent feedback to the audience, the burden of customer service might lead to a d eteriorating quality of the news feeds, thus 16 Regarding the thick skepticism towards government permeating across Western neighborhoods, think about Ronald Reagan’s remark---“government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem” 17 The number of strong ties on Tweeter is limited. See Figure 7 in the Appendix for more information
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perpetuating a v icious circle. When failing to accommodate the demands of the audience, the supposed engagement tools like FB may retrogress into old-fashioned press conferences. The news feeds are tedious. The engagement rate is pathetically small. And after FB revised its edge rank, the lack of engagement will lead to dwindling fans able to see the news feeds in the first place. Worse still, facing a large pool of fans that is appallingly dynamic and hybrid, it is almost impossible to provide tailored messages only to the relevant audience. Imagine you are intrigued by the Chinese language, but the news feeds you receive every day are about Chinese food, something you happen to frown on. The page is unlikely to create positive change in your mind which “engagement” is supposed to bring. This is a fundamental problem facing IIP, which brought the agency to halt its FB advertising during the 2013 inspection (OIG Report 2013, 22). However, considering the burden of the sheer number of fan count, it is questionable how welltargeted IIP can become with a stringent budget. Indeed, for all of its rhetorical emphasis on engagement, or strengthening relationships, the Obama administration paid little more than lip service to engagement claims. It still prefers the number of engagement over the genuine quality of engagement. The “fan campaign” is one piece of evidence. It can be interpreted as a legacy of the Modus Oprandi in the Cold War, when audience reach constituted the predominant criteria for success. The age of mass communication championed number rather than quality. However, in social media, quality is king. At any rate, engagement is not an end in itself. As diplomats swarming to platforms for the sake of swarming to platforms, it is healthy to note that engagement is no more than a tool. If engagement does not favor the ultimate goal, or at least has not reached its full potential, it may be the time to re-evaluate the “engagement campaign”.
Why Confucius Institutes can be a Great Stage for FB Outreach
By comparison, incorporating Facebook into Confucius Institutes will provide the following comparative advantages over applying it to Chinese Embassies. The inherent problems haunting either IIP or possibly Chinese Embassies can be resolved to a great extent: • The partnership structure of Confucius Institutes with foreign universities means that their remarks cannot be interpreted as official standpoints. With a less stringent demand on message accuracy, the tensions between security and engagement can be largely alleviated. • The non-profit, unofficial status of Confucius Institutes, offers the space to pursue a more personable approach. At the same time, Confucius Institutes can win more credibility on FB vis-à-vis Embassies, by keeping an arm’s length from the government. • Despite an undeniable political background, Confucius Institutes are cultural entities in nature. Confucius Institutes will not become politically charged and risk alienating fans. • 63 Confucius Institutes 18 (almost half of them in the U.S.) already have FB pages with a median fan count of 105. There has been little, if any, public backlash over the move. The potential consequence of “backfire” is minuscule. • An Embassy FB page needs to address millions of people. The FB pages of a Confucius Institute, however, would target only thousands of people in the located community. The relatively small size of its audience, compared to Embassies, provides the opportunities for substantial engagement. The quality of engagement can be guaranteed. 18
For the full list of the Confucius Institutes and Classrooms that have Facebook accounts. See Table 3 in the appendix for more information.
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A Path to the Future: Preliminary Recommendations for the Chinese Government
Recommendation #1: Establish the central nervous system of the FB accounts of Confucius Institutes. In reference to the structure of IIP, 19 a Social Media Center, with an initial staff of 16 20, should be placed under the China Public Diplomacy Association, an NGO outside governmental bureaucracies. 21 The original funding of $1.4 million 22 would be from the government, but is expected to gradually shift to donations from multinational companies in the future. The Center, in cooperation with Confucius Institutes, will form a Board of Directors that includes people from Foreign Service, Confucius Institutes, Private companies and academia. 23 Paramount is that the Board should articulate a tailored strategy for Confucius Institutes' outreach on FB.
Recommendation #2: The pilot program, or Phase One, will focus on the establishment of the central coordinating body---the Social Media Center. The Social Media Center will consist of five offices: Front Office, Office of Content Development, Office of Platform Management, Office of Training and Office of Strategic Planning and Evaluation.
Recommendation #3: In the Office of Content Development, a content strategist officer will produce thematic packages under a well-planned annual publication plan. The recommended themes are Chinese food, Chinese tourism, Chinese exchange opportunities and Chinese e-journals. 24 It should also explore ways to leverage civil society’s knowledge, skills and creativity through the means of contracts. Possible partners include Lenovo 25, Guokr.com, 163.com and Hua Yi Media. Info graphics and pictures are highly preferred compared to plain text.
Recommendation #4: In the Office of Platform Management, the top priority is to set up a centralized PD digital platform, providing access to thousands of PD resources. The platform will be open to only Chinese diplomatic actors; public access is restricted. When completed, it will provide important materials to the operation of Confucius Institutes’ FB pages and others concerned.
Recommendation #5: In the Office of Training, the central task is to develop a h ow-to manual to guide the FB outreach of Confucius Institutes. When designing the manual, the Office should draw lessons from similar institutions including Instituto Cervantes, Goethe Institut and British Council. 26 In an effort to exploit the viral nature of FB, the Office should compile a list of means to raise the number of “sharing”. Actively monitoring the successful cases in the institutes above will be a short-cut forward. Apart from the manual,
For detailed IIP organizational structure, see Figure 8 in the appendix for more information For the proposed initial staff composition, see Figure 9 in the appendix for more information 21 For the proposed organizational structure, see Figure 10 in the appendix for more information 22 For the proposed budget plan, see Table 6 for more information 23 For the proposed composition of the Board, See Table 7 in the appendix for more information 24 Chinese e-journals are mainly about influential academic theses and reports recently published in China 25 Lenovo has been exceptionally successful on Facebook. It boasts more than a hundred thousand active fans. More importantly, many of its posts were able to go viral online. For one example, see https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151892141059635&set=a.391943844634.169881.27678194634&type=1&theater 26 Some of their FB pages have achieved phenomenal success in involving fans into the dialogue. In a “free trip” campaign promulgated by Goethe Institut, the number of “people talking about” one of its FB pages increased fivefold, from a little over 2000 before the program to more than ten thousand. 20
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the office is also responsible for organizing systematic online training. Only officers who pass the training will be permitted to operate the FB pages. •
Recommendation #6: In the Office of Strategic Planning and Evaluation, the Social Media Center should design metrics to quantify the performance of each social media officer. The metrics should pay more emphasis to the quality of engagement. Possible criteria include a questionnaire sent out to FB fans that provides reliable feedback on the FB Page and average response time to each question received. The metrics are expected to differentiate different kinds of engagement. “Sharing” deserves more weight than “likes” and “comments”.
Recommendation #7: Phase One is due to last for one year. Five main goals in the Phase One are the establishment of the Center, the formulation of a development strategy, the construction of a cloud-sharing platform, the completion of a how-to manual, and the designing of social media training courses. Once completed, the Center should step into Phase Two and roll out its social media expertise to Confucius Institutes across the world. Ten institutes that already have FB accounts will be selected as the sample, five in the U.S., three in Europe, one in Asia and one in Africa. Each partnering institute will employ two full-time social media officers, one Chinese, one local resident. Digital literacy and marketing expertise will be the principal criteria in the selection process. The salary structure of the social media officers will encompass a l imited regular wage and a bonus based on t heir performance. The highlight of the program will be an audience research officer who will conduct precise surveys of the fans to determine which thematic package should be delivered. Phase Two will run for one year as well. If the response from the local community is positive and an improved engagement is visible on the FB pages, the Center should step to Phase Three by adding an appropriate number of institutes into the program.
Recommendation #8: During the operation of FB pages, a personalized tone should be adopted, avoiding anything that would give the impression of an official tone. FB pages should include perspectives that do not entirely favor the Chinese government. Meanwhile, provide tangible prizes that are sponsored by Chinese companies (private companies are preferred) to promote the pages, for instance, Lenovo and Huawei.
For PD practitioners, the allure of social media is evident. 44 pe rcent of the world’s population is under 25 (Gregory 2008, 4) and the majority of them are now in social media. 27 The dramatic rise in youth population throughout the world who has limited engagement with China poses a challenge; the key to resolve the challenge and bridge the gap lies in social media. Looking into the future, the importance of social media will only grow, but the inertia of bureaucracy demands years to ramp up t he staff, know-how and funding. At the same time, if China attempts to tap the full potential of social media, the inherent challenges that have been constraining IIP need to addressed. The Social Media Center approach, that steers clear of these challenges, can be a viable path to the future. Social media, used appropriately, will become a “force multiplier” for the entrenched PD campaign of China. 27
For the precise data, see Table 4 and Figure 5 for more information.
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Percent responding favorable from 2007 to 2013 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0
Figure 1: Percentage responding favorable in 16 countries from 2007 to 2013 Source: The Pew Research Center Global Attitudes Project database
Institutional Problems •Functional overlap •Lack of interagency supports •Lack of management to contractors
Strategic Problems •Lack of metrics for evaluaiton •Over-emphasis on fan numbers •Lack of clarification of the targetted audience • No departmentwide PD stragety
Figure 2: Problems facing IIP: a threefold classification
Inherent Problems •Secuity clearance vs. the quality of enagement •Policy dissemination vs. audience Preference •Not sustainable
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0.35 0.3 0.25 0.2
Average Engagement Rate from 29 Sep 13 to 29 Oct 13 U.S. Embassy - Jakarta, Indonesia U.S. Embassy Pakistan U.S. Embassy Belgrade
0.15 0.1 0.05 0
Figure 3: Average engagement rate from 19 S ep 13 t o 29 O ct13, U.S. Embassy Jakarta, Pakistan and Belgrade Source: Facebook insights
Figure 4: Fan count of the top three U.S. Embassies Facebook Pages, from April 08, 2010 to Dec 01, 2014 Source: Google Wildfire Monitor
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Figure 5: â€œPeople talking aboutâ€? the top three U.S. Embassies Facebook Pages, from Jan 02, 2012 to Dec 01, 2013 Source: Google Wildfire Monitor
Figure 6: Conceptual Model for analyzing Facebook Diplomacy
The limitation in adopting two-communication model is that communication happens not only vertically from communicators to people, but also horizontally among the members of the public who start exchanging opinions about the messages they receive. Peer review is a strong argument, which cannot be reflected in the model.
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Figure 7: The total number of a userâ€™s strong ties (defined by multiple directed messages as a function of the number of followers he or she has on Twitter. Source: Bernardo A. Huberman, Daniel M. Romero, and Fang Wu. Social networks that matter: Twitter under the microscope. First Monday, 14(1), January 2009. Office of Audience Research and Evaluation
Education and Cultural Affairs
Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs
Regional Coordination and American Spaces
Office of Written Content
Office of Video Prodocution and Acquisition
International Information Programs (IIP) coordinator Public Affairs
Office of Policy and Outreach
Office of Translation Services Office of Innovative Engagement
Office of Web Engagement Office of CO.NX/DVC
Content Support Services
Figure 8: The organization chart of IIP after the latest adjustment Source: OIG Report 2013
Office of Content Management Systems Office of IT Operation
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Front Office(4) Office of Strategic Planning and Evaluation(4)
• Confucius Institute Liaison (Experiences in Confucius Institutes preferred) • Partnership Manager (Experience in Confucius Institutes preferred) • Partnership Assisant • Strategic Planning Manager • Strategic Planning Manager • Evaluation Manager • Evaluation Assistant
Office of Content Development(3)
• Content Strategist (Experiences in Confucius Institutes preferred) • Translation Strategist • Contract Manager
Office of Platform Management(3)
• Platform Manager • IT Support Officer • Contract Manager
Office of Training(2)
• Training Program Manager • Social Media Outreach Speicalist
Figure 9: The proposed initial staff composition of Social Media Center
Establish and remain contact with foreign Embassies
Office of Strategic Planning and Evaluation
Organize the weekly staff meeting and quarterly interagency
Social Media Center
Design the metrics to evaluate performance of each social media officer Draft the weekly production schdeule
Outreach potential partners
Elaborate the strategy framework formulated by the Board of Directors
Office of Content Development
Produce the thematic packages based on the schedule Translate the alreadymade graphs, videos or weibo commentsin China
Office of Platform Development
Run the cloud-sharing platfrom Provide IT support
Office of Training
Develop the social media guideline and online courses Conduct trainings through online courses
Figure 10: The proposed organizational structure of Social Media Center
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B ritain Eg yp t Fran ce G erm an y In d o n esia Jap an Jo rd an Leb an o n M exico P akistan P o lan d R u ssia So u th K o rea Sp ain Tu rkey U n ited States A ve rag e M e d ian
2007 49 65 47 34 65 29 46 46 43 79 39 39 52 39 25 42 4 6 .1 9 4 4 .5 0
2008 47 59 28 26 58 14 44 50 38 76 33 33 48 31 24 39 4 0 .5 0 3 8 .5 0
2009 52 52 41 29 59 26 50 53 39 84 43 43 41 40 16 50 4 4 .8 8 4 3 .0 0
2010 46 52 41 30 58 26 53 56 39 85 46 46 38 47 20 49 4 5 .7 5 4 6 .0 0
2011 59 57 51 34 67 34 44 59 39 82 51 51 55 18 51 5 0 .1 3 5 1 .0 0
2012 49 52 40 29 15 47 59 40 85 50 50 49 22 40 4 4 .7 9 4 8 .0 0
2013 48 45 42 28 70 5 40 56 45 81 43 43 46 48 27 37 4 4 .0 0 4 4 .0 0
T re n d
Table 1: Percentage responding favorable in 16 countries from 2007 to 2013 Source: The Pew Research Center Global Attitudes Project database
ADVANTAGES Multimedia, interactive content available Real-time delivered to the Audience 29 Overcome the geographical barriers
Connect to educated youth in cities
Facebook Insight allows in-depth audience analysis Realize the potential of a total engagement approach Able to provide fast feedback
DISADVANTAGES Generally not used to disseminate information about complex policy issues (Ciolek 2010) Rumors and errors travel fast as well Will be delivered only to a portion of fans, determined by the Page Rank of the content May be drown amidst the great number of feeds Cannot connect to people who are unable or unwilling to use Facebook The analysis can be questionable 30 May be labor-intensive facing piles of messages 31 Might churn out troubles if the message is problematic
Table2: The advantages and disadvantages of Facebook
29 One positive application is that Embassy Bangkok used Facebook and Twitter to keep American citizens and the public at large informed about the volatile security situation during the political crisis in Thailand in 2010. 30 Take the U.S. Embassy Belgrade for example, among its approximately 160,000 fans in 2013 October, only 88.4 percent of them are from Belgrade, the supposed targeting country. While, as suggested by Matthew Wallin, after such breakdown, the number of the fans remain inaccurate considering the variables of VPN (domestic users from Serbia might us a U.S. domain to log in, then they will be classified as U.S users) , foreign fans living in Serbia (they will be defined as Serbia users. (Wallin, The Challenges of the 2013) 31 “OIG inspectors found that the use of social media is extensive, but labor-intensive. Many embassies required additional staff or had to reprogram an existing position in order to use social media in an active way…”Review of the Use of Social Media by the Department of State, Office of Inspection, Report Number ISP-I-11-10, February 2011
People Talking About
UWA Confucius Institute Confucius in Auckland 23 of Institute 74 Confucius Institute University of Melbourne Tourism Confucius Institute at Griffith University Sydney Confucius Classroom
Australia New Zealand Australia Australia Australia
169 130 66 44 36
1 1 0 16 0
0.0059 0.0077 0.3636 -
Confucius Madagascar :: Institut du groupe Hanban Confucius Institute at the University of Botswana Confucius Institute, Unilag Nigeria Confucius Institute, Unilag Nigeria Confucius Institute at Egerton University
Madagascar Botswana Nigeria Nigeria Kenya
525 228 34 34 29
8 73 2 2 0
0.0152 0.3202 0.0588 0.0588 -
Confucius Institute at the Ateneo de Manila University Confucius Institute NTU Singapore Confucius Institute at Prince of Songkla University TAG Confucius Institute Confucius Institute at NSU Confucius Institute at Kathmandu University
Phillipine Singapore Thailand Jorden Banglandesh Nepal
1346 1101 330 299 205 63
20 11 32 34 3 0
0.0149 0.0100 0.0970 0.1137 0.0146 -
Китайский язык каллиграфия гохуа ушу чай Институт Конфуция Russia Confucius Institute at YSLU after V.Brusov Armenia Institut Confucius des Pays de la Loire d'Angers France METU Confucius Institute Turkey Groningen Confucius Institute Netherland Confucius Institute at UBB Romania Confucius Institute in the Republic of Moldova Maldova United Kingdom The Confucius Institute at the University of Manchester United Kingdom Confucius Institute at Trinity Saint David Music Confucius Institute Denmark Confucius Institute at Leiden University Netherland Copenhagen Business Confucius Institute Denmark United Kingdom Liverpool Confucius Institute Confucius Institute for Scotland Scotland UCC - School of Asian Studies and Confucius Institute Ireland
1674 406 334 243 197 195 166 139 102 88 88 57 47 25 13
35 11 18 2 2 7 34 3 4 18 2 0 3 1 0
0.0209 0.0271 0.0539 0.0082 0.0102 0.0359 0.2048 0.0216 0.0392 0.2045 0.0227 0.0638 0.0400 -
Confucius Institute at Michigan State University Confucius Institute University of Memphis Confucius Institute at Texas A&M University Confucius Institute Webster University Confucius Institute at The University of Kansas Confucius Institute at Western Kentucky University NC State CI North Carolina State University Confucius Institute Confucius Institute at the University of Minnesota Confucius Institute at San Diego State University Pfeiffer Confucius Institute Confucius Institute at the University of Kentucky Confucius Institute at UD UCA Confucius Institute GW Confucius Institute Confucius Institute at Pace University Confucius Institute at The University of Toledo The Confucius Institute at Stony Brook University Confucius Institute at the University of Arizona UW-Platteville Confucius Institute The Confucius Institute at the University of Michigan Confucius Institute at Georgia State Confucius Institute at Saint Mary's University Confucius Institute at Miami Dade College University of Massachusetts Confucius Institute at Boston Confucius Institute at USC Confucius Institute-University of Akron Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College The University of Utah Confucius Institute The Confucius Institute at the University of Texas at Dallas - UT Dalla Confucius Institute of Rutgers University - CIRU Confucius Institute at the University of Oregon
512 442 433 350 336 325 267 259 258 235 217 210 141 127 118 113 109 109 105 89 84 71 55 46 43 37 22 22 21 20 12 9
27 2 13 5 1 0 1 22 38 7 1 1 2 7 22 5 3 8 1 0 10 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 3 1 1
0.0527 0.0045 0.0300 0.0143 0.0030 0.0037 0.0849 0.1473 0.0298 0.0046 0.0048 0.0142 0.0551 0.1864 0.0442 0.0275 0.0734 0.0095 0.1190 0.0182 0.0455 0.1500 0.0833 0.1111
United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States United States
Table 3: The list of Confucius Institutes and Classrooms that already have Facebook pages by 2013/11/26; Ratio= People Talking About/ Fan Count; Source: Facebook
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Table 4: Percentage that uses social networking in the U.S. (based on total) Source: Pew Research Center Q79, Global Attitudes Project 2012
Table 5: Percentage of teen social media users who use the sites above. Source: The Pew Research Centerâ€™s Internet & American Life Teen-Parent survey, July 26September 30, 2012, n=802 for teens 12-17 and parents, including oversample of minority families.
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Content development Training Program Platform Development Operations Personnel G&A Total Operations TOTAL EXPENSE
Personnel Employee Payroll Front Office Executive Director C onfucius Institute Liaison P artnership Manager P artnership Assistant Office of Strategic Planning and Evaluation S trategic Planning Manager(2) E valuation Manager E valuation Assistant Office of Content Development C ontent Strategist T ranslation Strategist Contract Manager Office of Platform Management Platform Manager IT Support Officer Contract Manager Office of Training T raining Program Manager Social Media Outreach Specailist Social Media Officers Abroad A frica(1*2) A sia (2*2) E urope, U.S. (13*2) PAYROLL TOTAL Taxes & Benefits (28%) TOTAL PERSONNEL
¥500,000 ¥500,000 ¥1,500,000
¥700,000 ¥100,000 ¥0
¥2,176,000 ¥792,000 ¥2,968,000 ¥8,436,000
¥6,816,000 ¥871,200 ¥7,687,200 ¥8,487,200
Notes Designed in YR1 with operation cost in YR2 platform will be completed in YR1
¥250,000 ¥70,000 ¥100,000 ¥50,000
¥262,500 ¥73,500 ¥105,000 ¥52,500
5% 5% 5% 5%
¥200,000 ¥100,000 ¥50,000
¥210,000 ¥105,000 ¥52,500
5% 5% 5%
¥110,000 ¥90,000 ¥110,000
¥115,500 ¥94,500 ¥115,500
5% 5% 5%
¥120,000 ¥80,000 ¥100,000
¥126,000 ¥84,000 ¥105,000
5% 5% 5%
5% 5% 5%
¥1,700,000 ¥476,000 ¥2,176,000
¥120,000 ¥300,000 ¥3,120,000 ¥5,325,000 ¥1,491,000 ¥6,816,000
begins from FY2 begins from FY2 begins from FY2
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General & Administration G&A Board Expense Meetings/ Conference Travel
¥400,000 ¥200,000 ¥100,000
¥440,000 ¥220,000 ¥110,000
10% 10% 10%
Facilities Rent Telephone Office Supplies Insurance Equipment Postage & Delivery TOTAL
¥0 ¥10,000 ¥10,000 ¥10,000 ¥60,000 ¥2,000 ¥792,000
¥0 ¥11,000 ¥11,000 ¥11,000 ¥66,000 ¥2,200 ¥871,200
10% 10% 10% 10% 10%
Notes board travel, expenses & per diem staff Meeting & Travel travel for finding partnership
Provided by China Public Diplomacy Association includes office phones, cell, internet various supplies and equipment computers and some audiovisual equipment includes postage, overnight delivery and courier
Note: Legal and Accounting will be merged to China Public Diplomacy Association
Table 6: Budget plan for FY1 and FY2
Board of Directors Confucius Institutes Foreign Ministry Private Companies China Public Diplomacy Assocication Academia
Number 3 3 2 2 2 12
Notes High-level directors in promotion and strategic planning ; Social media literacy perferred Members of Public Diplomacy Office or Public Diplomacy Counseling Committee; Social media literacy perferred High-level managers of partnership companies (Lenovo or 163.com); Social media literacy highly perferred High-level director; Social media literacy preferred PD Professors in Top 10 Colleges; Social Media Literacy Required
Table 7: Composition of Board of Directors
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Towards a Unified Korea —China’s New Korea Policy
YUANCHEN YANG Tsinghua University
Abstract: Having been North Korea’s single sponsor country for decades, China’s political backing and economic assistance to North Korea have been uncounted and unconditional. However, Pyongyang’s third nuclear testing, which posed a significant threat to China’s strategic interests in the Asia-Pacific region, forced Beijing to reevaluate its policy towards North Korea. This paper, by examining China’s roles and goals in a Korean unification led by South Korea, aims at providing the Chinese government with a peaceful and permanent solution to the current North Korean nuclear crisis.
Introduction On February 12th, 2013, North Korean state media announced it had conducted an underground nuclear test, its third in seven years. In response, Japan summoned an emergency United Nations meeting and South Korea raised its military alert status. A month Yang Yuanchen is a senior student at Tsinghua University, Beijing, pursuing a dual degree in Linguistics and Economics. She has a particular interest in international relations, comparative politics, and Chinese foreign policy. She is currently working with Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars at Washington, D.C..
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later, a Pentagon spy agency report concluded with “moderate confidence” that North Korea possessed nuclear weapons that could be fitted onto ballistic missiles (Alexander, 2013). As the North Korean government officially ended the 1953 Korean Armistice Agreement on March 9th, declaring that it “is not restrained by the North-South declaration on non-aggression” (Reinhart, 2013) and warning that the next step was an act of “merciless” military retaliation against its enemies, Beijing’s hope of convincing Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear ambitions, through security guarantees and food assistance, has thus far been dashed.
China’s North Korea policy has failed to achieve its objectives. Escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula ensuing from United Nations Security Council Resolution 2087 indicate that even the country’s bottom line of ensuring its own national security has been challenged. China is now encircled by North Korea—a de facto nuclear weapons state with missile capabilities and daring brinkmanship (Pollack, 2010), Russia—an ex-superpower with core geopolitical interests in Northeast Asia (Moltz, 2003), and an ever-strengthening military alliance between the United States, Japan, and South Korea (Smith, 2013). Faced with these facts, Chinese foreign policy must change to meet the stark new reality, which may involve the dissolution of the Cold War’s residual structure on the divided Korean Peninsula.
This paper intends to suggest a new North Korea policy for China that best secures its strategic interests in the region and promotes its image in the world without distracting from its own security. It starts by tracing the history of China’s North Korea policy since the 1940s which helps shed light on the current dynamics of China-North Korea relations, and then proceeds to explore China’s mounting security concerns with North Korea’s dogged pursuit of possessing nuclear weapons. Based on a comprehensive evaluation of China’s core security needs, economic stakes, and diplomatic goals, this paper argues that assisting North Korea’s reforms and opening-up, and supporting a Korean reunification led by South Korea would be the best possible strategic option for China given the constraints of the present
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situation. A reunification roadmap, which ensures China’s geopolitical interests in a unified Korea, is provided in the fifth section and policy implications are assessed in the end. This paper, by providing absolute gains to the region’s major players, hopefully could solve China’s diplomatic dilemma, defuse the 2013 Korean crisis, and restore the long-sought peace and stability to East Asia.
Evolution of China’s Policy This chapter briefly reviews the record of efforts that have sought to avoid the situation we confront today.
1940s—1960s Subjected to former USSR, North Korea failed to establish official bonds with China until 1949. With the end of Chinese Civil War and the founding of New China, the two countries, the People’s Republic of China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, exchanged diplomatic recognition on October 6, 1949.
In May 1950, Kim Il-sung secretly visited Beijing to brief Mao Zedong and the Chinese leadership on his war plans and solicit military backing. Following a series of setbacks received by the Korean Peoples’ Army and the crossing of the 38th parallel by the United Nations Command, Red China joined the Korean War in support of North Korea in October 1950. As many as 180,000 Chinese soldiers were killed, making immortal contribution that helped establish enduring blood ties between the two nations (Roe, 2000). Apart from dispatching the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army to Korea to battle against the United Nations Command, Beijing also agreed to take North Korean refugees and render economic assistance during the war.
With the signing of the Korean War Armistice in 1953, China, along with other members of the socialist bloc, provided Pyongyang with extensive economic assistance—the total amount
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of which was estimated at over $100 billion—to support its postwar reconstruction and economic development.
1960s—1980s In 1961, the two countries signed the “Sino-North Korean Mutual Aid and Cooperation Friendship Treaty”, which promised to promote peaceful cooperation in the areas of culture, economics, technology, and other social benefits between the two countries. Even more important was the two nations’ pledge to adopt immediately all necessary measures to oppose any country or coalition of countries that might attack either nation, as stated in Article 2. The treaty was prolonged twice, in 1981 and 2001, valid until 2021.
The treaty marked the prelude to a long-standing military partnership between the two states that have thus, despite twists and turns in their bilateral relations, cooperated closely in security and defense issues.
1980s—2000s The collapse of the Soviet Union on December 25th, 1991 marked an end to the Cold War, leaving the North Korean regime with a stark choice: either losing control over the country amid attempts at reform and opening or accepting China as its single sponsor state. Discouraged by previous examples of the Soviet Union and much of Eastern Europe, and wary of the rising military power of China at the same time, Pyongyang sought yet another path: it strove to build a strong domestic deterrent to any military action while threatening to use that deterrent to try to extract economic concessions out of the Chinese, Americans, Japanese, South Koreans and anyone else concerned about peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.
Fearful of losing its strategic buffer, China continues to offer North Korea political concessions and economic aid—a policy, though largely effective in the past, is beginning to
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see diminishing returns (Perlez, 2012). North Korea is now even more dependent upon China than before, with 90% of its food reserves and energy supplies coming from its neighbor. Meanwhile, long-time unconditional support for North Korea, both in terms of money and supplies, is sparking increasing domestic outcry, and “putting China at odds with South Korea, Japan, and the United States.” commented Bates Gill, specialist on Chinese politics and foreign policy of United States Institute of Peace.
2000s—2013 On January 10th, 2003, the North Korean regime declared its withdrawal from the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the launch of an illegal enriched uranium weapons program. Since then, China has been an active participant in six-party talks, aimed at finding a peaceful resolution to the security threats posed by North Korea’s continued possession of nuclear weapons.
However, five rounds of talks from 2003 to 2007 produced little net progress. With North Korea’s sinking of the ROKS Cheonan, its impoundment of Chinese fishing boats, and its bombardment of Yeonpyeong, a rift is emerging between Pyongyang and Beijing. On February 12th, 2013, the North Korean regime announced its success in conducting an underground nuclear test. In response, United Nations Security Council adopted unanimously Resolution 2094 on March 7th, 2013, which imposed a series of more stringent economic and commercial sanctions on North Korea and increased the power of other nations to enforce these sanctions. In addition to endorsing the resolution, the Chinese government strongly condemned the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’s third nuclear test.
Lessons Learned From backing North Korea in the Korean War to supporting its economic reconstruction, to accommodating its domestic needs under growing international pressure, the efforts of the Chinese government over the past half century have backfired and brought the country no
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closer to its goal of ensuring peace and stability within its near-abroad. “To some extent, North Korea is never grateful for international assistance, especially the help from China.” Noted Jonathan Pollack, senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution. Indeed, by any objective measure, North Korea’s stubborn pursuit of nuclear weapons poses a greater current and potential threat than ever.
As North Korea insisted on April 23rd, 2013 that it be recognized as a nuclear weapons state, U.S. expanded its missile defense in the region, Japan accelerated its remilitarization, South Korea raised its military alert status. “Pyongyang’s behavior further entrenches U.S. bilateral military alliances in the Asia-Pacific that Chinese strategists perceive as a form of encirclement.” as Antoine Bondaz, visiting scholar at the Carnegie–Tsinghua Center for Global Policy, observed. The potential increased for closer Japanese-South Korean military cooperation, a situation detrimental to China’s national interests in Asia-Pacific. North Korea stops being China’s strategic asset, but rather, it heightens regional tensions at a time when China desires regional stability and raises concerns about China’s commitment to becoming a responsible global power.
Pyongyang’s intransigence on its nuclear weapons program called for a complete overhaul of China’s previous North Korean policy, an abandonment of traditional cold war mindset. Beijing used to have well-founded concerns: the collapse of the Kim family regime was likely to result in North Korea’s social instability, large flows of refugees into China’s Northeast, the loss of China’s long-established buffer zone, and the direct exposure to the U.S. military deterrence, none of which prove valid in the current situation.
First of all, chance of a North Korean collapse is very remote. “The list of weak states is long, but only a few of those weak and badly governed states necessarily edge into failure.” said Robert Rotberg in his The New Nature of Nation-State Failure. As long as North Korea’s elite class supports the regime, it gets, to some extent, the ruling legitimacy. Furthermore, the
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argument for a buffer zone has little validity since a land attack on a battlefield where it fought and lost is probably the last military action the United States will take. Moreover, it is highly doubtful if local citizens are willing to accept US military presence on a unified Korean Peninsula. It is therefore high time for China to adjust its national strategies, reevaluate its security alliance and seek a break from the past.
Elements of an Evolving China North Korea Policy To a degree, a policy switching has already begun. Following North Korea’s third nuclear testing, China acted in concert with the international community in urging sanctions upon the troubled state’s nuclear and ballistic missile activity. On June 27th, 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping met his South Korean counterpart, Park-Geun-hyem, in Beijing and stressed China’s adhere to a nuclear-free Korean Peninsular and firm support for a unified Korea. As China’s policy continues to evolve, past experience with North Korea suggests a number of principles and priorities that form a valuable foundation for future engagement with Pyongyang. ￼ Stability—Inviolable Bottom Line Despite different tactical approaches, there is a fundamental strategic goal that nearly all parties in China are able to reach a consensus—stability, particularly near its border—which determines China’s adherence to safeguarding peace on the Korean Peninsula and preference to resolving the current Korean Nuclear Crisis through dialogue and consultations.
In recent years, however, as Pyongyang’s behavior becomes more provocative and its actions more alarming, Beijing’s actions show an unprecedented level of indignation with Pyongyang. In the past, China adopted a conciliatory or even compromising official approach, holding back from difficult discussions with North Korea. Recently, especially after North Korea’s third nuclear test, China has been unprecedentedly outspoken in its condemnation of Pyongyang’s obstinate behavior. In a dialogue with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon in
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April 2013, Wang Yi, Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs, opposed “provocative words and actions from any party in the region” and added that the Beijing would “not allow troublemaking at the doorsteps of China.” Chinese President Xi Jinping echoed this sentiment, which was widely believed to allude to North Korea, in a public speech a few days later.
China’s discontent with North Korea is demonstrated not only through statements but also through actions. In early 2013, Beijing voted in favor of UN Security Council Resolution 2094, which condemned North Korea’s third nuclear test and suspended business operations with North Korea’s Foreign Trade Bank. These actions—although not substantive enough to rein in North Korea—are unseen in China-North Korea relations.
Denuclearization—Imminent Security Threat On February 12th, 2013, a tremor with an initial magnitude 4.9 (later revised to 5.1) was detected 24 kilometers east-northeast of Sungjibaegam, North Korea, by the China Earthquake Networks Center. Bearing all the hallmarks of a nuclear bomb test, the tremor soon created a surge panic in China, particularly among northeastern Chinese residents, over its potential radiation exposure.
Even though conclusions of the Chinese authority indicated no significant radiation fluxes, this incident, a rather unannounced and apparently offensive act, caused Beijing to pause and reevaluate its policy towards North Korea and reconsider the means to secure its strategic interests in the region. Sharing a 1,415-kilometer border with North Korea, China is starting to recognize a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula as carrying crucial geopolitical exigencies.
Economic Interests—Important Leverage According to statistics issued by Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China, Sino-North Korea trade reached $3.4 billion in 2010, a leap of 51% over 2009 and a record high in history. With an annual donation of more than $6 billion, ranging from food,
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petroleum, plastic, vehicles, electrical machinery to military supplies, China provides about half of all North Korean imports with an aim to ensure the stability of its society and its ruling party.
China’s provision of economic assistance to North Korea appears to be unconditional, especially when many of North Korea’s trading partners have been pulling back and international sanctions tightening. The growing dependence of North Korea on China’s economic support, though admittedly burdensome, gives the Chinese government more leverage and flexibility in its negotiations with Pyongyang.
Political Stakes—Superficial Friends The Chinese government has long been condemning Pyongyang’s nuclear program while simultaneously backing its ruling party. This lack of cohesion in China’s policy towards North Korea undermines trust from the international community, worsening its relationships with the Unites States, South Korea, Japan, and other major actors in the region. The underlying motivation behind China’s current North Korea policy is to guarantee peaceful political and economic transitions, maintain close and predictable relations, and limit the presence of the United States on the Korean Peninsula. As Kim Jong Un consolidates his control over the country and the United States seeks China’ cooperation in denuclearizing North Korea, the Chinese government is offered more flexibility to adjust its North Korea policy.
Strategic Options In China’s efforts towards a unified Korea, several steps are vital to the achievement of this goal.
Resuming Six-Party Talks As the world seeks a peaceful process and minimal risk of conflict in addressing the Korean
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Peninsula security problems, the resumption of six-party talks lies in the strategic interests of all parties.
Little, if any, tangible progress has been made in the past to prevent North Korea from enhancing its nuclear arsenal and disrupting regional stability, largely because Beijing and Washington are divided on their approaches towards Pyongyang, which obviously benefits from the mutual distrust between China and the United States. With the escalation of tensions on the Korean Peninsula, Chinaâ€™s and U.S. strategic interests, though not entirely identical, continue to overlap, creating more common ground for the two countries to collaborate in the resolution of North Koreaâ€™s nuclear crisis. As long as the two major powers are willing to cooperate and strive to achieve consensus within the framework of six-party talks, North Korea will lose its traditional leverage.
Any multilateral cooperative agreement between China and other regional actors for addressing North Korea should at a minimum reflect a common position in their expectations before any form of engagement with Pyongyang begins. This shared position should include agreement on four points: no nuclear recognition, no more nuclear weapons, no more nuclear tests, and no nuclear proliferation.
Reopening North-South Dialogue Drawing the lessons from the German Reunion, reunification of North and South Koreas requires common aspirations of all Korean people. Therefore, political contact should be increased and non-governmental exchange encouraged between the two Korean states to foster closer friendship and promote mutual trust.
The Sunshine Policy and the North-South Hotline, which are intended to replace the half-a-century distrust and enmity with reconciliation and collaboration, serve as critical peach-keeping mechanisms.
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Assisting North Korea’s Reform and Opening-Up In lieu of seeking a regime change through violence which might meet with fierce domestic resistance, Beijing should attempt to promote economic reform in Pyongyang by offering such enticements as development aid and special economic zones. As the economy of the country prospers and livelihoods of the people improve, a gradual awakening of North Korean people promises to undermine the regime from within.
Preparing for the Reunification On a unified Korean Peninsula, China needs to safeguard the following core strategic interests:
1) An International Treaty should be signed recognizing new Korea’s sovereignty and all foreign troops withdraw from the Korean Peninsula;
2) Korea should give up all weapons of mass destruction and follow strict arms control;
3) Korea should declare itself permanently neutral after reunification;
4) Korea should never make land claims to China.
Recommendations Exposed to imminent nuclear threat, China is unlikely to maintain its policy prior to North Korea’s third nuclear testing, nor will it opt to completely abandon the North Korean regime, which would set into motion a chain of undesirable reactions, including the swarm of refugees into China’s Northeast, the loss of a critical buffer zone, and the uncertainty in future power dynamics on the Korean Peninsula.
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A confluence of factors—security exigencies, political concerns, economic stakes—has gained ground to facilitate the formulation of China’s New North Korea Policy that emphasizes economic development within the country and normalized relationship with the world with an ultimate goal of establishing a unified Korean nation.
Conclusions In 1988, Chancellor of West Germany Helmut Kohl admitted that he would not anticipate a unified Germany within the course of ten years. History soon triumphed over his pessimism as the Berlin Wall collapsed in 1990. Korea’s reunification, too, should be anticipated in the foreseeable future since any tension from domestic instability, to international pressure, to natural disaster could ignite the fuse. It is never too early for China to actively explore the consequences of a collapse of the North Korean regime and prepare for the coming of a unified Korea.
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References Alexander, David, (2013). “Pentagon Says North Korea Can Likely Launch Nuclear Missile.” Reuters. Thomson Reuters. Moltz, Clay, (2013) “James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies Combating the Spread of Weapons of Mass Destruction with Training & Analysis.” CNS. Perlez, Jane, (2013). Some Chinese Are Souring on Being North Korea’s Best Friend, New York Times. Pollack, Jonathan, (2013) “Shale Gas Boom in the US: What Future for European Petrochemical Industries? Conseil Central De L’Economie-Salle 6-20 Avenue D'Auderghem-Bruxelles-Metro Schuman.” IFRI. Reinhart, Alex, (2013). “The Cord.” The Cord RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Dec. 2013. Roe, Patrick C. (2000). The Dragon Strikes. Presidio. Smith, Sheila, (2013). Feeling the heat: Asia’s shifting geopolitics and the U.S.-Japan alliance, World Politics Review.
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South Africa: U.S. Window to Sub-Saharan Africa TAYLOR SMITH Emerson College ABSTRACT This paper examines how the United States can promote its national interests in Africa by reestablishing a close relationship with South Africa. A continent made up of mainly failing states, Africa is becoming a haven for terrorist groups and corruption. The United States needs to monitor and infiltrate these havens through soft power. To generate change, the United States must place a greater emphasis upon relations with Sub-Saharan states. Specifically, by improving South Africa’s economy and overall image the U.S. can enlist their help as local ambassadors to the rest of the continent. By extending and expanding the African Growth and Opportunity Act, bringing more seed capital to South Africa, establishing an International Innovation Center, and revamping the country’s marketing and public relations the United States can achieve this.
INTRODUCTION The second largest and second most populous continent in the world, Africa inherently plays an important role in the global community. Despite its geographical size or its long and rich history, the majority of states in Africa are weakened or failed. While the majority of African independence movements took place in the 1960s and 1970s, they were followed by a fifteenyear period where individual leaders struggled to create unified, stable nations. Most of these movements did not come to fruition, and as a result states became weakened or failed. 52 of Africa’s 53 countries can be found on the 2009 Failed State Index at the critical levels of warning or alert. Even worse, the Top 10 Failed States in the 2009 Failed State Index contain 7 African countries. The shortage of strong government, slow economic development, and lack of security or border control has spread the pandemic of state failure across the continent. Scholars have argued that state failure draws in terrorist organizations and spreads regional destabilization (Crocker). Failed and failing states lack the power to govern internally and have incompetent or corrupt law enforcement. This enables terrorist groups to congregate discreetly, gather revenue, and insert themselves within unstable governments. Terrorist groups attack failed states because of the larger number of insecure and alienated citizens whom they can control (O’Neil). Consequently, Africa has become a harbinger of international terrorist matrixes and operations. North Africa and the Horn of Africa are deeply plagued by a network of extremist Taylor Smith is an undergraduate at Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. A double major in Journalism and Political Communication, she hopes to someday become a foreign service officer or a foreign war correspondent. Currently, she is interning in the Department of State at the Foreign Service Institute.
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Islamic terrorist organizations, such as Al Qaeda. Considering the region’s historical and cultural ties to the Middle East as well as their geographical proximity, this is no surprise. However, the insubstantial terrorist groups in Sub-Saharan Africa are beginning to gain stronger foot-holdings in the failed states. Recent events such as the bombings in Kenya and Somalia, and the terrorist attempt on a U.S. airliner by a Nigerian national are warning signs that these international terrorist networks are spreading. The best way to stop this contagious spread of terrorism is through preventative measures. These measures must occur before a country reaches total state failure and contamination. Certain parts of Africa have already fallen prey to terrorist organizations. The Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda, the extremists in Kenya and Nigeria, multiple militias in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the insurgents in the Niger Delta are a few of the key security threats to Sub-Saharan Africa. U.S. INTERESTS While these failed states are certainly a problem for the international community, the current trend in U.S. foreign policy is to avoid international interventions unless they serve national interests. After multiple foreign intervention failures in the 1990s, such as the debacle in Somalia and smaller mistakes in Bosnia and Haiti, U.S. citizens called for a foreign policy renovation. The majority of these failures occurred during President Clinton’s administration. He crafted the idea of “democratic enlargement” as a countermeasure (Ambrose). It required politically viable foreign policy decisions to be based upon protecting primary U.S. strategic and economic interests. A complete rejection of the idealist foreign policy view where the United States was duty-bound to promote human rights and democracy, it took hold. At its heart, the new U.S. foreign policy focused on domestic interests and economic competitiveness. This new focus on domestic policy when formulating foreign policy had a huge influence on U.S. foreign policy towards Africa. Countries with bright economic futures such as Poland, Russia, and Brazil were put on the front burner. Bloody and unprofitable civil wars in Africa were no longer a main concern. However, the United States’ interests in Africa are growing post 9/11. The Bush administration worked towards a more aggressive position for the United States in the international community (Ambrose). He succeeded in making the fight against terrorism a pillar in the foundation of U.S. foreign policy. But his grievous failures in Afghanistan and Iraq have only reinforced the domestic interests focus. This became evident when the U.S. refused to engage with the crisis in Libya in 2011. Over the past few years, issues in countries like Syria, Uganda, Kenya, and Somalia have forced the United States to refocus on Africa. The U.S. Department of State has described U.S. objectives in Africa as follows: 1 • Expand democratic values and human rights through efforts to combat corruption and strengthen civil society; 1
Jendayi E. Frazer, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, in Nov. 17, 2005 testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs.
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• Strengthen Africa’s ability to fight terrorism; • Increase economic prosperity and security by expanding investment, strengthening Africa’s private sector and improving Africa’s economies; • Foster regional stability by preventing and resolving conflict (Frazer). These objectives are based upon the foreign policy trends of the United States in the last 20 years. They incorporate Clinton’s focus on economic and democratic enlargement and integrate Bush’s focus on counterterrorism. FUTURE OBJECTIVES The problem with U.S. foreign policy towards Sub-Saharan Africa today is the lack of emphasis. While the United States’ focus has been on conflicts in the Middle East and major power players like China and Russia, detrimental shifts have occurred in Sub-Saharan Africa’s political climate. The United States’ must refocus their foreign policy in Sub-Saharan Africa to address these issues, and use all available resources to develop the continent further. There are two main routes the United States can go to implement preventative actions based upon their national interests. The first route calls for direct plans tailored to each state influenced by terrorist organizations. These states include but are not limited to Nigeria, Niger, Mali, Chad, Somalia, Sudan, Egypt, and Kenya. However, this route would resemble past international intervention attempts which have received negative responses both internationally and domestically. In the past 10 years the United States has entered seven nations in liberation attempts: Kuwait (1991), Somalia (1992), Haiti (1994), Bosnia (1995), Kosovo (1999), and Afghanistan-Iraq (2001) (Dobbin). Since the end of the Cold War the United States has been involved in military endeavors every few months. The majority of these have either failed or received extensive negative press coverage. It would not be in the United States’ best interest to carry out preventative actions by directly engage with these failing states. The second option is to influence failing states in an indirect manner. By zeroing in and supporting a more stable state in Africa, the United States can push them to become local ambassadors for the U.S. mission. Developing and using the positive relationship with this stable state can benefit both the interests of the United States and the chosen stable African state. But where the first option opens up many doors in terms of states to focus on, the second option closes the majority of them. Option 2 cuts the 53 optional nations in Africa down to one, South Africa. Based upon the current state of U.S. foreign policy and the current U.S. interests in Africa, I recommend Option 2. The United States cannot afford another international intervention to go poorly. Option 2 calls to foster a positive relationship with South Africa, a country with which we have already have a solid bilateral relationship. It provides the most security for the United States, requires little funding, and is the easiest way to employ these preventative measures on the African continent.
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BACKGROUND ON SOUTH AFRICA The Republic of South Africa occupies the southernmost part of the African continent stretching from the Limpopo River in the north to Cape Agulhas in the south. Covering an area of 1,219,090 km2, the country shares borders with Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe in the north, and with Swaziland and Mozambique in the north east. It also encompasses the Kingdom of Lesotho. As the country works toward a common, unified future these border relationships become key. Jan Smuts, South Africa’s prime minister in 1940, recognized the benefits of the country’s geographic position early on: If we wish to take our rightful place as leader in Pan-African development and in the shaping of future policies and events in this vast continent, we must face the realities and the facts of the present and seize the opportunities which these offer. All Africa may be our proper market if we will but have the vision, and far-sighted policy will be necessary if that is to be realized. 2 More recently, in the past 20 years the United States has sustained an overall positive relationship with South Africa. Since the end of the Apartheid in 1994, South Africa has transformed into a newly industrialized country, identified as an upper middle income economy by the World Bank. Since then, the Department of State has regarded South Africa as a solid ally. In 2010 the United States and South Africa launched a strategic dialogue aimed at furthering cooperation. This culminated when Secretary Clinton hosted South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nikoana-Mashabane and publicly declared South Africa to be the model for the Sub-Saharan region. “They’re an anchor on the continent, certainly post-apartheid.” (Clinton) 3 South Africa has displayed their anchoring ability through various avenues. It was the first African nation to host the World Cup in 2010. One of the 20 African countries to reach its 3rd political election, South Africa has shown an increasing appreciation for civil liberties (Lindberg). It is ranked 113th on the Failed States scale, versus its neighbor Zimbabwe, which is ranked 10th (FFP). The United States and South Africa currently entertain a solid bilateral relationship. South Africa is one of the largest missions for the Department of State in the world. There is also a heavy presence of other inter agencies such as USAID, military, and FBI. Under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), South Africa receives preferential trade benefits. AGOA allows 90% of South Africa’s exports to enter the United States duty free
C. Smuts, Plans for a better world: Speeches of Field Marshal the Rt Hon. J.C. Smuts, p. 250 (1942) Hillary R. Clinton is a former U.S. Secretary of State (2009-2013), “Remarks at U.S.-South African PEPFAR Partnership Framework Signing Ceremony” (2010)
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(IOL) 4. In 2010, the United States was the 3rd largest trading partner for South Africa and South African exports to the United States totaled R57.4 billion (DoS). However, since the Obama administration took office South Africa has fallen to the side in foreign affairs. He did not even visit the country until halfway through his second presidential term. The country has started to doubt America’s commitments and promises. “Some are unhappy with the current political situation in the United States.”(Fontelera) 5. South Africa has moved closer to relationships with other international power players, such as the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa), and had considerable influence on key institutions such as the World Trade Organization and the United Nations Security Council. South Africa has already displayed peacekeeping abilities on their continent. Their work in Sudan, Zimbabwe, and the DRC has proven them to be a competent country in terms of intervention. “South Africa believes in African solutions to African problems. And having been through the dismantling of the apartheid they have the experience and mechanisms to co combat it,” said Denise Jobin Welch 6. In order to call on South Africa as our local ambassadors to the African continent, we must invest in their stability as a nation through soft power 7. Incorporating NGOs and public diplomacy outreach programs would make the United States “able to reach a big diverse group in South Africa” (O’Shea) 8 IMPLEMENTING POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS Public diplomacy initiatives must be employed to indirectly influence failing African states away from terrorist organizations. Before the United States can tackle the bigger issue of the entire continent, there are a few relationship building actions to be implemented in South Africa. There are four steps that will help sustain South Africa’s stability on the continent and foster a close bond with the United States: 1. Renew African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) for another 10 years and expand upon it; 2. Help form relationships with major banks to bring more seed capital to South Africa; 3. Create an International Center to spur global collaboration;
IOL is a news organization owned and run by Independent Newspapers. The South African newspaper publishes 15 national and regional newspapers. 5 Liza Fontelera is an Administrative Assistant at the South African Consulate General with 26 years of experience. (2013) 6 Denise Jobin Welch is the U.S. Department of State’s Desk Officer for South Africa. 7 Soft power is defined as “the ability to get what you want through attraction rather than coercion or payments. It arises from the attractiveness of a country’s culture, political ideals, and policies.” It was coined by Harvard Professor Joseph S. Nye, Jr, who explained the effect of soft power as “When our policies are seen as legitimate in the eyes of others,” (Nye x, 2004). 8 Richard O’Shea is the current Post Management Officer for South Africa at the U.S. Department of State. (2013)
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Revamp the country’s marketing and public relations to focus on the largely educated workforce, low property taxes, low cost of living, strength of foreign currency, and hubs of innovation such as Stellenbosch’s Tech Park, among others.
AGOA The African Growth and Opportunity Act was signed into law on May 18, 2000 as Title 1 of the Trade and Development Act of 2000 by President Clinton. The legislation established countries in Africa that were eligible for trade benefits based upon a strong market-based economy, support of U.S. national security initiatives, and basic human rights and non-support of terrorism. In general, the act affords beneficiaries preferential duty free treatment of certain goods entering the United States. Currently, there are 40 beneficiary countries including South Africa. According to the African Coalition on Trade, as many as 1.3 million jobs have been created indirectly by AGOA. South Africa specifically has experienced an increase in jobs due to the steady exporting of automobiles and other transportation equipment. By allowing AGOA to continue until 2026, the United States can benefit both domestically and internationally. Domestically, renewing AGO will help the Obama administration reach its commitment to double U.S. exports by 2014 through the National Export Initiative. The uncertainty of the act’s future has already had a negative impact. Apparel orders have already dropped by 35% as buyers anticipate the act’s end and search for their products elsewhere. As previously stated, South Africa’s influence on weaker states is only as strong as the stability in their own state. Renewing AGOA is one of the main ways the United States can ensure this stability. “If you pull back, we may start to regress. If we were left alone the island of prosperity we would surely lose any control,” said South Africa’s Deputy Chief of Mission to the U.S., Johny Moloto 9. Since the act is continent wide, it also benefits the failing states of Africa. AGOA can be a key force in stabilizing regions and pushing back terrorist organizations from weak states. It also fosters interstate relationships and economies within Africa. “AGOA’s effects are versatile. South Africa exports car seats to the United States, but they import the leather from Botswana. Both economies benefit,” said Denise Jobin Welch. Before act renewal, AGOA should also include two amendments to expand the act’s positive influence to new audiences. The trade and investment framework agreements (TIFAs) within AGOA are used to set clear goals and objectives for increasing exports. Based upon the growing amount of U.S. businesses in Africa, especially South Africa, the current legislation on TIFAs must be amended to allow private sector representatives from the United States and host countries to participate and provide direct input on discussions.
Johny Moloto, South Africa’s current Deputy Chief of Missions to the United States. Appointed to the United States in December 2009, he has represented South Africa in the Foreign Service since 2003.
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The second amendment to AGOA should incorporate a network of commercial resource centers throughout Sub-Saharan Africa to educate consumers on the benefits and fine print of AGOA. These are excellent ways to promote a country’s resources, as well as American exports. By establishing this network on a regional basis, Africa can move towards a more stable and unified continent. At the 2013 AGOA Forum, Xavier Carrim 10 agreed that progress on regional integration and stabilization is the key to move Africa up on a global value perspective. Carrim believed that this goal was only achievable through hard and soft infrastructure investments. While extending and amending AGOA is a hard investment, the next three policy initiatives infuse the soft infrastructure. SEED CAPITAL Seed capital is defined as the initial capital used to start a business. For most companies, it tends to come from personal assets. Banks and venture capital investors view seed capital as an “at risk” investment which represents an intense commitment. On their own, South Africa could not garner these investors. But with the help of the United States, it becomes achievable. Another way to stimulate more seed capital and improve South Africa’s economy is by creating a Business Improvement Council (BIC). The Business Improvement Council would incorporate collaboration between American and South African businessmen, and hopefully someday extend to the rest of the continent. The parties involved would pool money together to create central business and tourism areas, as well as improve parking and pedestrian access. They would also brainstorm and debate ways in which more international businesses can place roots in South Africa, and the rest of the continent. The council would resemble the structure used in similar councils enacted globally (Boston, Montreal, and Barcelona). It would have various divisions such as Financial Stability Microcouncil, Public Affairs Microcouncil, Entrepreneurship MicroCouncil, Small Business Microcouncil, and International Business Microcouncil, among others. Another important component of the Business Improvement District should call for collaboration on TIFAs from private sector representatives. Not only does this infuse the first policy initiative within another, but it allows the clear goals and objectives achieved through TIFAs to have a local focus. BICs have also exhibited powers to enforce laws on businesses. In San Diego, California, the Business Improvement Council worked to enforce the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in their area’s businesses 11. The Business Improvement Council is an excellent way to promote
Xavier Carrim, South Africa’s Deputy Director General for the International Trade and Economic Development at the Regional Integration Through Trade Facilitation Session during the 2013 AGOA Forum 11 The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed on July 26, 1990 by Congress. Many businesses in San Diego, California failed to comply within the two year grace period. The Business Improvement Council put pressure on the businesses to comply with new ADA legislations by threatening to withhold grants and by creating educational programs on the specific access and signage requirements.
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both economic and overall stability away from the allocation of state budget and government bureaucracy. INTERNATIONAL INNOVATION CENTER The creation of an International Innovation Center forces the South Africans to push the limits of ideas and insights on some of the biggest challenges facing Africa and the global community. Some tactics it would employ would be student exchange programs, speaker panels, community service, ect. To implement the revamped student exchange program, the International Innovation Center would work with President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) 12. It would also call upon former international exchange students to South Africa to learn what worked and what did not. It would create an Exchange Student Alumni Network and employ former exchange students to speak about their experience in South Africa to their home university. The center would provide the students with brochures for the listeners about study abroad opportunities in South Africa and an outline on how to conduct the presentation. The students would also be invited to meet with the International Innovation Center and present projects or ideas they have for improving South Africa’s influence on the rest of the continent. These simple student based projects allow South Africa to displace negative connotations and work on their nation branding. It also promotes grassroots diplomacy on a person by person basis. The speaker panels would consist of international businessmen, foreign policy analysts, and politicians to come and speak on what made their organization or country successful. These panels would introduce South Africans to ideas and situations they’ve never experienced before. The International Innovation Center would also be used to implement the networks of commercial resource centers for AGOA mentioned in the first policy recommendation. Once again, this would allow for the commercial resource centers to have both a local and international perspective and effect on AGOA. They would commence a marriage between the public sector and private resources. “Reaching out to the private sector, and getting the private sector’s input into that process is absolutely critical,” said Michael Froman 13 Once established, the International Innovation Center would have the potential to spread to other parts of the continent, and with it, the U.S. influence. Since South Africa shares so many borders with countries such as Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Lesotho, it would be a fairly easy second step. Just as regional destabilization has the ability to spread and contaminate, so does innovation.
Established in 2010, the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) is a long-term effort to invest in the next generation of African leaders and strengthen partnerships between the U.S. and Africa. It incorporates a series of exchange programs and scholarships that allow African students to study in the United States. 13 Michael Froman, the U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador’s opening remarks at the 2013 AGOA Forum.
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Some other examples of successful innovation centers are Deloitte Innovation Centers and the AT&T International Innovation Center in Israel. These innovation centers are another way in which change can be implemented without taking away from the federal budget or going through government bureaucracy. MARKETING & PR This is possibly the most influential step the United States can take to help South Africa. The U.S. is a formidable contender in the world of marketing and public relations. As a country based upon marketing strategies, the advice and influence would be exponentially helpful and represents minimal costs. South Africa has made moves to streamline their marketing and public relations through Brand South Africa, founded in August 2002. Their mission is to create a positive and compelling brand image for South Africa. While they’ve made great strides toward this goal, a partnership with the United States could be catalyst needed. The United States can show South Africa how to implement a campaign branding the nation – as an inspirational tourism destination, wine and gourmet capital, culturally diverse nation, business and innovation hub, and a continental leader. By working to craft these associations with South Africa, the United States can push South Africa towards a local leadership role. To brand South Africa as an inspirational tourist destination, United States PR firms can teach South African PR firms how to conduct a “Discover South Africa” Campaign, revamp the country’s website to become a more multimedia and user friendly platform, and help promote the many festivals and events that are held in South Africa each year. The “Discover South Africa” campaign would promote the natural beauty of the country in a series of short videos covering the following topics: environment, outdoors and adventure, culture and sports, gourmet and wine, and education. To minimize the cost and maximize the United States’ influence on all South African citizens, these videos should be produced by students from visual arts programs at South African Universities. An excellent example of a nation branding video is Dubai’s bid video for the World Expo 2020. It employs a cultural backstory combined with vibrant visuals all told by a charismatic 10-year-old boy. This video brands Dubai as a clean, healthy, diplomatic, and fun city that has built itself from the ground up in 40 years. The South African country website can be reworked to incorporate the cultural diversity in South Africa and contain insightful videos on how people can discover South Africa. It should also contain information about businesses, festivals, and other events. Another tactic to promote South Africa’s positive image and their various festivals and events is to target ads and articles in certain media outlets. The type of coverage South Africa should go after is: 1. Wine and food stories; 2. Features of popular cities like Cape Town and Johannesburg;
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3. South Africa as an adventure travel destination; 4. South Africa as a global leader on the continent (“Gateway to Africa) The media outlets South Africa should target include: 1. Australia’s The West Australian 2. Germany’s Die ZEIT 3. USA’s Travel Channel & Expedia 4. New Zealand’s The New Zealand Herald 5. Portugal’s Briefing 6. UK’s The Telegraph Travel 7. Italy’s Turisti Per Caso Magazine 8. Switzerland’s Auf Reisen Magazine & Travelhouse Blog 9. Finland’s Matkalethi Travel Magazine 10. Russia’s Argumenty i Fakty 11. France’s Le Voyage Creative
CONCLUSION The United States must employ a greater significance to their foreign policy in Sub-Saharan Africa. The way to start this increased focus and serve national interests is by reaching out to one of the most stable states on the continent, South Africa. South African potential to monitor SubSaharan terrorism and combat failure in African states can only be realized once South Africa hits their full potential. Before the U.S. can depend upon another nation to carry out certain national interests, they must ensure the nation’s stability and capabilities are adequate. As the most stable state in Africa, this becomes achievable through sharing U.S. resources and knowledge. These three simple steps to reinforce a positive relationship with South Africa could benefit the entire continent.
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BIBLIOGRAPHY Ambrose, S.E., “Rise to Globalism: American Foreign Policy Since 1938”, 2011. Bureau of African Affairs, “Fact Sheet”, U.S. Department of State http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2898.htm, 2013. Clinton, H.R. “Remarks at U.S.-South African PEPFAR Partnership Framework Signing Ceremony”, http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2010/12/152858.htm, 2010. Crocker C., “Engaging Failing States” in Foreign Affairs, Vol. 82, Issue Sep/Oct 2003. Dobbins, J. “The Beginner’s Guide to Nation-Building” by RAND Corporation, 2007. Frazer, J. E. “Cosolidate Africa’s Progress, Promise Now, State’s Frazer Urges”, IIP Digital http://iipdigital.usembassy.gov/st/english/texttrans/2005/11/20051117182426wcyeroc0.1059076. html#axzz2jW1qFB2v, 2005. Froman, Michael. “2013 AGOA Forum: U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Froman’s Opening Remarks”, http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=International+Trade+Administration+AGOA&s m=3, 2013. Fund for Peace. “The Failed State Index 2013” http://ffp.statesindex.org/rankings-2013-sortable Gvosdev, N. “Do Terrorist Networks Need a Home? The Washington Quarterly 25 (3): 97-108, 2002. International Trade Administration (ITR), “2013 AGOA Forum: Summary of Proceedings”, http://trade.gov/agoa/pdf/2013-AGOA-Forum-Summary-of-Proceedings.pdf, 2013 Lindberg, S.I., “The Surprising Significance of African Elections” in Journal of Democracy Vol 17, No. 1, pp129-151, 2006.
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Nye Jr., Joseph S. 2004. “Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics”. Public Affairs. 1-193. O’Neil, W. ‘‘Concept Paper – Beyond the Slogans: How Can the UN Respond to Terrorism?’’ In Responding to Terrorism: What Role for the United Nations? Report of the International Peace Academy, 2002 Pearson, D.R. “Sub-Saharan Africa: Factors Affecting Trade Patterns of Selected IndustriesSecond Annual Report”, U.S. International Trade Commission, http://trade.gov/agoa/agoa_main_003856.pdf, 2008. SAPA, “SA Hopes to Boost U.S. Exports: Mulder” in Business Report, IOL, Issue: September 17, 2013 http://www.iol.co.za/business/news/sa-hopes-to-boost-us-exports-mulder1.1579068#.Um8AyWTwL3N Schneidman, W., “The African Growth and Opportunity Act: Looking Back, Looking Forward”, Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings, http://trade.gov/agoa/pdf/2013-AGOA-Forum-Summaryof-Proceedings.pdf, 2012 Smith, T. Interview with Fontelera, L, an Administrative Assistant at the South African Consulate General for over 26 years (2013). Smith, T. Interview with Moloto, J., South Africa’s Deputy Chief of Missions to the United States (2013) Smith, T. Interview with Oshea, R., the Post Management Officer for the U.S. Embassy and all consulates in South Africa (2013). Smith, T. Interview with Welch, D.J., the U.S. Department of State’s Desk Officer for South Africa (2013).
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Smuts, C. “Plans for a better world: Speeches of Field Marshal the Rt Hon. J.C. Smuts” p. 250 (1942) I.
Vale, Peter. “South Africa and the African Renaissance” in the International Affairs Vol. 74, No. 2 p.271-287. 1998
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U.S. Security Interests Somalia: Policy and Strategy for Re-Engaging the Failed State
AUSTIN L. MANOR University of New Hampshire
Since 1991, Somalia has endured fourteen separate governments, effectively creating a perpetual state of violence and complete institutional instability. This constant chaos has established a long lasting power vacuum that has left the country splintered as local war lords fight over regional tracts of the nation. This lawlessness, combined with a largely unsecured and undefined border and coastline, as well as a general lack of economic development, has fostered an environment vulnerable to the growth of terrorism and Islamic extremist movements. One such group, al-Shabaab, al-Qaeda's terrorist affiliate in Somalia, controls substantial parts of the country and threaten to turn the state into a haven for terrorism. Despite recent progress in establishing the Transitional Federal Government behind AMISOM (African Union Mission in Somalia) forces, Somalia still poses a significant threat to U.S. national security. To mitigate this threat and avoid the potential future costs in lives and dollars, the United States must adopt a more engaged and well defined policy for engaging Somalia, characterized by increasing its support of peacekeeping and stabilization efforts, accomplished by increased aid and investment in economic development, assistance and oversight in the creation of durable national institutions, and the increased state security through the use of U.S. intelligence and clandestine capabilities to identify and neutralize possible terrorist threats emerging from within the state.
I. Overview: U.S. policy toward Somalia has long been characterized by detached, indirect, and uncommitted relations. This policy reality was born out of the failed intervention by U.S. Army Rangers in the capital of Mogadishu in 1993, with the resulting casualties sparking the ___________________________________________
Austin L. Manor is a senior in a dual major bachelors program at the University of New Hampshire. He is majoring in Political Science and International Affairs with a minor in Spanish, and is currently working at The Potomac Advocates, a defense industry consulting, research, and lobbying firm in Washington, D.C.
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withdrawal of U.S. forces, and eventually, UN peacekeeping forces as well. The battle, part of the ongoing civil war, also resulted in the U.S. closing its embassy, but maintained diplomatic ties, leaving the African nation in a diplomatic gray area. This situation persisted for nearly two decades, with the inability to establish any sort of stability and diplomatic presence becoming the de facto status quo for U.S.-Somali relations. This inconsistent foreign policy displays the ambivalence of the U.S. when engaging Somalia, characterized by "limited, indirect diplomatic and military support to the TFG" and the African Union (AU), proving to be wholly inadequate to their attempts at reestablishing a functioning federal government (Bruton, p. 3). These failed policies have allowed a terrorist presence to persist in the state, subjecting the west to an otherwise avoidable threat. Several terrorist groups, most noticeably al-Qaeda's organization in Somalia, al-Shabaab, enjoy safe haven and free movement throughout sizable tracts of the state. Furthermore, al-Shabaab's future terrorist capabilities will likely grow, as it has "already developed a robust relationship" with the geographically close al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) (Zimmerman, p. 20). This is a result of al-Qaeda's continued decentralization that cedes some power from the core leadership to the periphery, encouraging these "affiliate-to-affiliate relationships" that have likely "increased the overall network's resiliency...and now threaten the United States as much as (if not more than) the core group" (Zimmerman, p. 1) 1. Therefore, it is necessary for the U.S. to reassess its policies and strategies toward the failed state and adopt a more direct and invested approach in engaging Somalia to combat the current and future terrorist threats.
These affiliate-to-affiliate, decentralized relations facilitate the easy transfer of weapons, money, insurgents, and tactics among the distinct al-Qaeda geographic regions, and is especially easy given Somalia's largely unprotected borders and coastline.
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II. Policy Change: To incite substantial and lasting stability in Somalia, it is necessary to understand the complexities that precipitated the current extended environment of chaos in the failed state. Unlike other African states' tribal conflicts, Somaliaâ€™s violence is exacerbated by decades of clan differences and grievances, with several clans controlling competing regions through the state. Furthermore, poverty remains ingrained in Somali life due to the economic and infrastructural stagnation and depression resulting from the prolonged warfare. Together, violence and poverty the two factors that drives people to adopt radical Islamic thought and join such movements. Remedying these challenges would focus on normalizing these inter-clan relations by creating durable and responsive national institutions, addressing the lack of development and crippling poverty, and providing the requisite security to protect the implementation of the former, all necessary for establishing national stability and expelling terrorist factions. This can be achieved through increased military, monetary, and humanitarian support for the peacekeeping AMISOM and African Union forces, but is incumbent on swift and decisive changes in policy and strategy for U.S.-Somali relations. III. Economic Development One step in the process of re-establishing stability in a collapsed state is to improve the economy through international development organizations and funding, including providing humanitarian aid to those suffering the worst of the economic depression. As of 2009, Somalia's GDP per capital stood at $600, placing it's populace among the lowest income levels in the world (Dagne, p. 4). This is due in large part to the almost continuous violence witnessed during the protracted civil war since the fall of the Barre regime, devastating what little economic capacity
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the nation had possessed prior. While challenging, economic development in Somalia is not impossible, but its success is predicated upon three factors: security, access, and accountability. First, in order for Somalia to receive substantial international aid, the security and safety of the aid workers and funds must improve. Past aid organizations have often been victimized due to this inadequate protection, as "targeted attacks on humanitarian groups have made delivery of assistance difficult", harming both the aid groups and the aid recipients by discouraging future attempts (Dagne, p. 5). According to the United Nations Report of the Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea, Somalia is "consistently one of the world's most dangerous countries for aid workers" with "over 150 incidents involving aid workers, including a significant number of grenade attacks on agency compounds, carjackings and lootings" in 2012 alone (UN Report, p. 32). In extreme cases, aid workers were "specifically targeted or assassinated" by al-Shabaab, clearly displaying the TFG's "fail[ure] to provide adequate security and protection to agencies operating in areas under its control" (UN Report, p. 32) 2. Second, humanitarian and development aid cannot reach millions of vulnerable Somalis due to the large tracts of land controlled by al-Shabaab. In the past two years, the terrorist organization has "banned most international agencies from operating in areas under its control...targeting non-governmental organizations and United Nations agencies", including the International Committee of the Red Cross and Islamic Relief (UN Report, p. 32) 3. Third, much of the humanitarian and development aid lacks adequate accountability, with rampant diversion and misappropriation of assistance the norm. Organized local groups known as 'gatekeepers' often receive most of the aid and use 'pie-cutting' to steal sizable portions of aid
The most notorious of these killings was the August 2012 assassination of Yassin Mohammed Hassan, a Somali national and UN Food and Agriculture Organization staff member working in Marka, Southern Somalia. 3 According to a 2010 report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, southwestern Somalia (then controlled by al-Shabaab) suffered from extremely restricted humanitarian access, or complete denial of access (See Appendix, Figure 2).
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deliveries, resulting in "a large proportion of resources...not reach[ing] the intended beneficiaries (UN Report, p. 32). Moreover, fraud committed by non-governmental partners and aid distributors, usually diverting resources to their own pockets, have compounded the problem, leading the UN to create an active blacklist of such organizations (UN Report, p. 33). This lack of accountability can be countered by a the creation of a UN mandated trans-governmental aid oversight organization, run jointly by the TFG and UN, to vet possible aid organizations to ensure aid delivery without corruption nor interference, while the deficiencies of security and access can be addressed and rectified through increased U.S. support of African Union and AMISOM peacekeeping forces, outlined in greater detail later in this paper. Once these problems are remedied, development aid can commence in both bottom-up and top-down programs. Bottom-up development will focus heavily on microfinance, with small international loans going directly to individuals to expand the yield of their trade, be it livestock, agriculture, or manufacturing. This infusion of money at the individual level will increase personal production of goods for purchase and increase the personal income of the individual to reinvest in their community, working toward financial security and independence. For top-down allocation, instead of attempting to establish a completely new aid distribution system, Somalia should adopt what Bronwyn Bruton 4 calls a "decentralized approach" that involves new development initiatives collaborating with the "informal and traditional authorities that are already in place on the ground", provided these preexisting entities pass the aid oversight organization vetting process (Bruton, p. 28). Using this framework, the U.S. and its international partners could utilize existing community based development models, such as local development councils of clan elders and religious leaders, who could work together 4
Bronwyn E. Bruton is a democracy and governance specialist with extensive experience in Africa and was a 20082009 international affairs fellow in residence at the Council on Foreign Relations.
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with USAID and UNDP personnel to identify local development and infrastructure projects and direct aid to those approved projects (Bruton, p. 28). If successful, these programs can be and expanded from the community level to the federal level, involving several regions and clans. Right now, while the economic connections between the clans and regions are quite weak, promoting regional economic cooperation and growth could "eventually provide a sustainable incentive for the development of infrastructure, a regulatory framework, and, ultimately, the creation of national governance mechanisms" between clans, precipitating the creation of national institutions and a successful federal government (Bruton, p. 29).This approach will also benefit the northern autonomous regions of Somaliland and Puntland, while still "largely ineligible to receive multilateral funding and development assistance", would receive substantial aid through this program and eventually may accept and incorporate themselves into a regional economic cooperation, and, perhaps, into a confederation or federal government (Bruton, p. 28). This increased economic growth and regional development cooperation will serve to undercut al-Shabaab popularity and recruitment, as civilians will choose peace and development over violence and destruction. IV. Institution Building: Currently, the TFG and its political and governance institutions are not strong nor stable enough to effective govern the state, or even the small portions of the country that it actually exhibits control over. Rife with corruption and weak leadership, these limitations "threaten to undermine the Federal Government of Somalia and the current peace and reconciliation process in the country", risking the tenuous, but promising progress made in recent years (UN Report, p. 7). Therefore, an overhaul of the framework of the TFG is necessary to meet these inadequacies and fulfill the requirements of effective governance.
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This change would begin with the U.S. working in tandem with the African Union and UN to "promote reform of the TFG's structures" to foster a "more inclusive governing mechanism" to involve more of the factions that comprise Somalia (Bruton, p. 23). By including these many groups, it will show that the TFG, and by extension the U.S. and UN, are willing to use "Somali-led solutions, both political and military" including the "Islamic Courts, Somaliland, Puntland, and other moderate Somali forces" in order to create a coalition to contain the political and military advances of al-Shabaab and other extremist elements (Dagne, p. 16). Such a coalition, with the non-African international actors taking a backseat, but still actively involved in overseeing the process, and supported by the militaries of neighboring countries (Ethiopian and Kenyan African Union forces), is more "likely to get more support from the Somali population" than an internationally led government and peacekeeping force, and will also remove the "most powerful justification that al-Shabaab uses to wage war, the presence of foreign forces" (Dagne, p. 16-17). Once this coalition is formed, the members must work together to create an effective framework that will establish and support strong institutions necessary to state stability and security. Such a process is well outlined by Robert Rotberg 5: Then comes the re-creation of an administrative structureâ€”primarily recreating a bureaucracy and finding the funds with which to pay the erstwhile bureaucrats and policemen. A judicial method is required, which means the establishment or reestablishment of a legitimate legal code and system; the training of judges, prosecutors, and defenders...and the opening of courtrooms and offices. Restarting the schools, employing teachers, refurbishing and re-equipping hospitals, building roads, and even gathering statisticsâ€”all of these fundamental chores take time, large sums of money...and meticulous oversight in postconflict nations with overstretched human resources. Elections need not be an early priority, but constitutions 5
Robert I. Rotberg is director of the Kennedy School's Program on Intrastate Conflict and president of the World Peace Foundation.
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must be written eventually and elections held in order to encourage participatory democracy. (Rotberg, p. 94-95). The formation of such institutions will no doubt require compromise among coalition members, with the exact content of constitution, legal system, composition of the legislative, judiciary, and executive to be hammered out, and if need be, brokered by African Union appointed governmental advisors, and must meet certain governmental benchmarks set by African Union and UN to be deemed acceptable. Also, the UN mandated joint TFG-UN transgovernmental aid oversight organization must be created as a requirement for continued funding. The success of governance in Somalia will hinge on a political solution, and leaving "the onus on the TFG" and other Somali organizations to create institutional framework will provide a much more credible and viable regime, versus that of one imposed by foreigners, in the eyes of the Somali population (Cooke, p. 2). V. Domestic Security Arguably the most important step toward establishing stability in Somalia is to improve security throughout the state. As early as three years ago, TFG forces, supported by AMISOM and African Union forces, only controlled the coastal cities of Baidoa and Mogadishu, with alShabaab and other insurgent groups controlling most of south-central Somalia, including Kismaayo, the third largest city, and were able to "routinely assassinate opponents and government officials" (Dagne, p. 13). However, since this peak of power and capability, al-Shabaab has witnessed a gradual decline in influence and power, suffering several conventional military setbacks and defeats, especially in urban centers, highlighted by the loss of Kismaayo to AMISOM and Somali National Army forces, who have greatly "expanded their areas of territorial control" (UN Report, p. 7).
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Nonetheless, al-Shabaab remains a formindable enemy, still in control of sizable tracts of land and a command of roughly 5,000 soldiers, made even more dangerous with the recent shift in strategy toward asymmetric warfare versus actively occupying many city centers (UN Report, p. 7). Furthermore, al-Shabaab and other insurgents operate in a highly decentralized manner, moving in small units and operating almost wholly independent from one another, making them hard to track and target, given the current resources of AMISOM, African Union, and Somali forces (Dagne, p. 14). Therefore, it is necessary for the U.S. to assist the Somali National Army, African Union, and AMISOM forces in improving their security and military capacity through continued military funding, training, and joint action. First, the U.S. must continue, or ideally if possible, increase its funding to support allied military forces in Somalia. In 2011, the U.S. provided about $57.6 million for peacekeeping operations, antiterrorism programs, and International military education, training, and law enforcement, down from $246.6 million in 2009 (Dagne, p. 4). This trend for cutting funding should be reversed and restored to adequately fund the present peacekeeping forces and the training and expansion of a more capable Somali National Army and Special Forces. Second, in addition to simply funding training, the U.S. should take an active role in this process, including “training, security sector reform, capacity building, police training, and maritime security”, and ideally done in “close coordination with other U.S. agencies and international partners” (Cooke, p. 11). This would keep our involvement shared and limited, with such training being handled jointly by U.S., UN/AMISOM, and African Union forces to ensure uniformity in training strategy and implementation. Third, U.S. would increase its presence and support in the asymmetric theatres, such as the use of drones, navy, and clandestine Special Forces activities, where U.S. capacity is unmatched. UAVs, already in limited use in Somalia, have “devastated al Qaeda and associated
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anti-American militant groups” and have done so at little financial cost and with no risk to U.S. forces (Byman, p. 1). Expanding their use would further increase the capability to hunt down insurgents, as well as act as initial patrols in fortifying Somalia’s unguarded and porous western border with Ethiopia. Increasing the U.S. naval presence along the vast Somali coastline would serve a similar purpose, providing military capacity in the form of Tomahawk cruise missile strikes and security through patrolling the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean shores to discourage piracy. Also, the U.S. should send naval forces to the ports of Somaliland and Puntland and other autonomous regions, signaling a “willingness to resist any attempt by the Shabaab to attack or gain control of these territories” (Bruton, p. 33). As for actual combat forces on the ground, only a handful of Special Forces units would be active in the area, running covert joint raids with the Somali Special Forces to locate and detain or neutralize high value insurgency targets and collect valuable intelligence. VI. Recommendation Improved security in areas controlled by the TFG is paramount to the success of this strategy, and would receive priority in the implementation of this plan. Once established, economic development and institution building can commence in a secure environment, involving and led by the many moderate Somali factions, thereby undercutting support to alShabaab as development progresses and the government stabilizes. However, this plan is incumbent on a rapid change of twenty plus years of U.S. policy toward Somalia. Recently, the U.S. has taken nascent steps toward making this shift, with Assistant Secretary of State Andrew Shapiro pointing to recent "assistance to AMISOM...and other countries", calling it a "great success...in the fight against al-Shabaab" (Shapiro). While a good start, the U.S. must further embrace this policy change, and exchange ambivalence for re-engagement and indifference for
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re-investment, necessary to safeguard national interests and ensure national security in the near future. Appendix
Figure 1- Source: United States Africa Command (Africom.mil)
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Figure 2- Source: Congressional Research Service Report for Congress (Somalia: Current Conditions and Prospects for a Lasting Peace)
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Bibliography Bruton, Bronwyn E. “Somalia: A New Approach.” March 2010. Council on Foreign Relations. Byman, Daniel. “Why Drones Work.” Foreign Affairs 92, no. 4 (2013): 32-43. Cooke, Jennifer. “Fading Hopes for Somalia Crisis.” June 2006. Center for Strategic and International Studies. Cooke, Jennifer, and Henek, David. “Somalia’s Future: Options for diplomacy, Assistance, and Peace Operations.” Jan. 2007. Center for Strategic and International Studies. Dagne, Ted. “Somalia: Current Conditions and Prospects for a Lasting Peace.” Aug. 2011. Congressional Research Service Report for Congress. Rotberg, Robert I. “The New Nature of Nation-State Failure.” The Washington Quarterly 25, no. 3 (2002): 85-96. Shapiro, Andrew J., Realuyo, Celina B. "A Conversation With Assistant Secretary of State Andrew J. Shapiro." April 2013. Council on Foreign Relations. “Somalia Governance Overview.” United States Africa Command. “UN Report of the Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea: Somalia, 2013." Jul 2013. Council on Foreign Relations. Zimmerman, Katherine. “The al Qaeda Network: A New Framework for Defining the Enemy.” Sept 2013. American Enterprise Institute’s Critical Threats Project.
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Paper Abstracts Fall Semester 2013
North Korea: The Next Focus for the United States OLIVIA O. BROWN San Diego State University The United States must push to engage in diplomatic discussions with North Korea in order to move the country towards complete nuclear disarmament. Because the country has refused past attempts at dismantling its nuclear program, sanctions have been implemented that in effect have allowed North Korea to become isolated from the international community. This isolation has presented itself as a danger to North Korean citizens; the country cannot sufficiently support its people. In addition, the inability of outsiders to monitor the country translates to the ability of the North Korean government to violate the human rights of many of its citizens. It is understood that if North Korea would agree to nonproliferation as an attainable goal, the United States would be willing to return to a position in which it aided the citizens of North Korea. However, the troubled country fluctuates between dialogue that indicates a willingness to comply with disarmament discussions, and actions that demonstrate a defiant desire to pursue its own ambitions. It is in the United States’ interests that North Korea gets rid of its nuclear weapons; diplomatic discussions between the United States, North Korea, South Korea, and China, held without preconditions, will best serve the United States in achieving North Korean disarmament.
Strengthening Multilateral Response to Genocide JEAN-FRANÇOIS BUSSIÈRE-WALLOT Université du Québec à Montréal The Presidential Study Directive on Mass Atrocities puts the U.S. government on the right track but does not clearly propose to engage the international community on prevention and response to mass atrocities and genocide. To this end, the Obama administration should endorse a Protocol aiming at sharing information on mass atrocities, quick recognition of a process leading to genocide, strengthening the mandates and training of peacekeepers to protect civilians in face of genocide and empowering regional alliances to stop them within their territory. The Protocol would need to be supported by a UNSC Resolution, and therefore require engaging Russia and China, but could still reinforce U.S. Policy on mass atrocities without their consent.
Mexico-United States of America: The Mexican Path to Leadership AILYN L. FLORES C. * Universidad de las Américas Puebla
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This paper proposes an increase in H-2 A and H-2 B visas, and no limits on said visas. Mexico could help with the process of selection for the visas. This research is important because there are many undocumented people that are kidnapped every day by organized crime groups; these groups are located at the border of the United States with Mexico. The groups kidnap undocumented people because they need workers and cash. There are not enough visas for foreign workers. The present proposal could help immigrants to cross the border safely and legally. Nevertheless, if workers obtain American visas kidnapping will diminish. Moreover, proper border control will be strengthened through the creation of statistics and databases about flow of people trade (documented, undocumented). These statistics and databases will help identify measures of performance for the American government.
The Future of Drone Attacks: a Case Study of Yemen LAURA M.J. FOURNIER Ghent University The presence of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen has challenged national security and counterterrorism policymaking in Washington D.C. Obama explained in his speech on May 23rd of 2013 that “under domestic law, and international law, the United States is at war with Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and their associated forces” (New York Times 2013). This war has resulted in a rising drone use in Yemen. Under the Obama administration there have been presumably 93 air and drone strikes in Yemen up to date according to the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan public policy institute (The National Security Studies Program 2013). The United States is once more engaging in the “War on Terror” and is not planning any major policy changes soon. Nevertheless, the United States should focus on three major changes in its drone policy: accountability, international legality, and transparency.
The Decline and Fall of Public Diplomacy: A “New” Grand Strategy TRAVIS A. GROSS Montclair State University Sun Tzu once said, “To win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill.” The current human transition occurring globally has created an upheaval of events pointing to substantial weaknesses within the United States foreign policy. Throughout the brief history of the United States comprehensive roles internationally, a tendency to rely on force or hard power to accomplish short-term goals seems to predominate (George). The efficacy of force not producing the intended results, proposes that the deficit comes from an insufficiency of public diplomacy and soft power. This paper looks at past conflicts where the ideals behind public diplomacy and interagency cooperation had the potential to change the tide of crisis, as well as an overview of recommendations that can be applied to United States foreign policy today.
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Addressing Pakistan as the Link to Transnational Terrorist Activity Spawning from Central and South Asia MICHAEL T. HIGGINS The University of North Carolina at Charlotte The U.S. has faced numerous challenges in defeating al-Qaeda throughout Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) due to resistance that spawned from Afghanistanâ€™s neighbor Pakistan. While Pakistan remains an essential ally in the Afghan campaign, its government and military continue to pursue two-faced objectives that have ultimately compromised regional stability and the defeat of al-Qaeda. This paper will focus on policies that the current administration should consider adopting toward Pakistan, concentrating on stability and security specifically within the AfPak region as a method of counterterrorism after U.S. and NATO forces withdraw in December 2014. The paper will discuss solutions geared toward suppressing the internal factors that fuel extremist networks that provide support to al-Qaeda in Pakistan and the continued pursuit of the organizationâ€™s leadership in the country.
The Impact of U.S.-Israeli Counter-Terrorism Policy within the Middle East COLLEEN P. JOHNSTON Florida Gulf Coast University As close allies, the United States has labeled counter-terrorism measures in Israel as a strategic priority. The sharing of defense, intelligence, and economic relations with the United States has led Israel to become strong partner. The United States has invested resources in Israel to combat terrorism in the Middle East. Israel has become a counterweight against political Islam and a regional deterrence to proliferation efforts. However, Israel faces constant threats from terroristic entities and therefore greatly benefits from a bilateral U.S.-Israel counterterrorism strategy. With the creation of a comprehensive policy recommendation to combat terrorism in Israel, a model can formed, demonstrated, and ultimately implemented into other Middle Eastern countries.
Regime Changes: Should the U.S. Embargo on Cuba be Removed? CAMILO A. MANJARRES Montclair State University For many years the United States has exerted diplomatic influence, military aggression, and soft power to preserve order and stability. This was evident from World War I to the Cold War in multi and bi-lateral settings. This practice continues today in Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. In each one of these eras, it can be argued that the United States wielded its military might prior to attempting more fruitful diplomatic interventions. Instances such as the Cuban
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Missile Crisis and subsequent embargo, serve as evidence of this propensity for the military solution. The real question lies in whether these antiquated policies remain viable solutions in the age of globalization. Cuba is demonstrating early signs that it is on the path to democratization. Given the failure of the embargo to accomplish its stated objectives, U.S. foreign policy toward Cuba needs to be reevaluated to meet the demands of a restructured geopolitical landscape and prepare for a new era of international diplomacy. The Cuban Embargo should be removed and trade relations establish in order to facilitate the democratization process that will take place in Cuba within the next generation while also providing a new streamline of revenue among other benefits.
U.S. Interests in Iraq: A New Beginning Thomas A. McPeak Tiffin University After almost a decade of war in Iraq, American troops have finally departed the country. Immediately after American troops and the United Nations left the country, Iraq had a decrease in violence and an increase in their government efficiency. However, after almost two years of the troops leaving, Iraq is now seeing an increase in violence and the government of Iraq is heading in the wrong direction once again. Prime Minister Nouri al-Malika has come to the United States and has asked for help to gain back control of Iraq. With recommendations to update the United States Status of Forces agreement policy can make a big difference for Iraq for the long-term instead of just for the short-term. In addition, if the U.S. were to bring military forces back into Iraq it could help the Prime Minister gain back some advantage towards the government and give people of Iraq hope of seeing a better future.
The United States and Pakistan: A Necessary Relationship ELLIOTT E. MURRAY Saint Louis University As the United States begins to withdraw troops in Afghanistan, the â€œWar on Terrorâ€? carries on at full strength in Pakistan. The troubled state is a necessary supply route and military headquarters for the operation in Afghanistan, yet continues to struggle with terrorism itself. Despite this, the United States has a relationship of utility with Pakistan that will be maintained on the foreseeable future. In order to advance its foreign policy objectives, the United States must take a broader approach than simply fighting terrorists as they arise. The United States must look to the long-term elimination of Pakistan as a terrorist hotspot. To do so, a comprehensive approach must be taken. The U.S. must focus military spending on improving counterinsurgency capacity, while ensuring the military does not take precedent over the elected government. Extensive support should be given in the education, infrastructure and health sectors, among others, to improve civil society. In doing so, some of the root causes of terrorism can be reduced. Attempts to improve the relationship with India via economic channels can help stimulate Pakistanâ€™s economy and reduce tensions between the historic rivals. Finally, China
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should be consulted in the policy process because of its popularity and interests in Pakistan. In doing so, the United States is more likely to advance foreign policy goals in South Asia.
A Golden-Eye for the East: U.S. Policy towards the Eurasian Union Kevin L. Pinkoski University of Alberta On November 18, 2011, the presidents of Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan signed an agreement to create the Eurasian Union -- an integrated economic union in Eurasia that combines a common market and customs union. Then U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, was quick to denounce the agreement and outline America’s perspective on the issue. She cited that the Eurasian Union was a Russian led initiative to “re-Sovietize the region.” Sec. John Kerry has continued to articulate a similar dialogue. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the validity of Sec. Clinton’s claim. The main research question will be: “What should America’s foreign policy be towards the formation of the Eurasian Union?” Critical of Sec. Clinton’s claim and present U.S. policy on this issue, this paper will argue that American Foreign Policy ought to champion a bridging of capital to people, and as a result, democracy. This proposal recommends that the U.S. promote trade with the Eurasian Union as a part of state interest. This would recognize Russia’s attempts to integrate itself into the global market. This would also promote both economic development in Russia and institutional consolidation to the benefit of a democracy Russia.
Public Diplomacy: Investing in Yemen’s Youth through Education LINDSAY SHANAHAN University of Massachusetts – Amherst There might not be a country in the world today that could benefit more from American public diplomacy focused on education than Yemen. Many may see the events of the past decade and argue that it would be a meaningless public relations ploy, but the opposite is more likely. The youth within Yemen had an influence on the movement which led to President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s resignation in 2011, following more than 30 years in power. Despite their contributions toward political reform, this generation continues to suffer. The deep-rooted issues of Northern and Southern conflict, poverty, lack of resources and corruption have plagued Yemen for years. A policy implemented through public diplomacy will afford the United States the opportunity to not only better the youth, but the entire political culture, while also addressing core American security objectives.
Big state and international system assist institutions in emergent state stabilize.
Seeding / Opening
1. Fukuyama, Zweifel, Lindberg, Gibbons 2. Lindberg, Mansfield, Sen, Gladwell, Dahl (O’Donnell) 3. O’Donnell, Gaddis, Henderson, Gibbons, Zweifel, Fukuyama, Sun Tsu, Lindberg 4. Henderson, Lindberg, Gladwell, Sen, Mansfield, Kinney 5. Rotberg, Crocker, Gladwell, O’Donnell, Zweifel, Gibbons, Sen, Mansfield, Dobbins, Diamond 6. Henderson, Dahl, Mansfield, Sen, Fukuyama, O’Donnell, Von Ranke 7. Crocker, Sen, Cullison, Sharif, O’Donnell, Treaty of Westphalia, Covenant of the League of Nations, UN Charter
Expanded Transition Paradigm