War and Peace in Ukraine: The Separatists (1)

The war in Eastern Ukraine has killed from 15 April to 20 June an estimated number of “423 people, including servicemen and civilians,” (UN HCHR statement, 24 June 2014), which, compared with our own estimate of 99 deaths up to May 15 shows the rising violence of the ongoing fighting. Refugees and Internally Displaced People (IDPs) from the East now reach “nearly 34,600″ people,  with nearly half of the displacements – estimated to 15,200 within the Donetsk and Luhansk regions – taking place “over the last two weeks”, i.e. after 6 June 2014. Russia estimates that it now hosts 16,700 Ukrainian refugees on its territory, notably in the region of Rostov (Ria Novosti, 27 June; 14,000 on 25 June 2014, Itar-Tass). This, again, shows an intensification… Read More

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Evaluating Scenarios and Indicators for the Syrian War

Every year, The Economist, in its “The World in…” series, assesses it successes and failures regarding its past yearly forecasts (e.g. for 2012). This is an exemplary behaviour that should be adopted by all practitioners: if we are to deliver good and actionable strategic foresight and warning, and to improve our process, methodology and thus our final products, then we should always evaluate our work. Having now completed our last series of updates on the state of play for the Syrian war, we can now start assessing how our own scenarios and indicators fared so far, if they need to be updated and the potential methodological improvements that we should endeavour. Evaluating the scenarios As the Geneva conference took place (see previous… Read More

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Democracy: the Key to Avoiding Future Wars? (3)

In this post we shall finish investigating the second level of analysis of the Kantian framework, i.e. how states in their relationships with one another and also with their citizens should behave in their pursuit of democracy and if this leads to war or not, as could happen in the case of Syria, and finally look at the third level, humankind.

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Democracy: the Key to Avoiding Future Wars? (2)

In the Kantian framework, different kinds of agents pursue democracy at three levels: the individuals within a nation, the states in their relationships with one another and also with their citizens, and humankind. In this article, we shall look at how individuals within a nation should behave if they want to truly abide by democratic principles.

Should they rebel and when? Should they support war, and which type of war if any?

This article is the second part of a series reflecting upon Democracy, especially its link to war, in the framework of events, notably regarding Syria, Egypt and the “Arab Awakening” but also the 2010s European and American opposition movements. The first article can be read here, and the next and final one here.

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Democracy: the Key to Avoiding Future Wars? (1)

The summer 2013 has been fertile in upheavals and violent events, surrounded by heated controversies and very often by an absence of neutrality in the media. The international community is divided. As a result, informed and balanced judgements are difficult to achieve. Taking political decisions is thus even harsher than usual, bringing to the fore… Read More