Editors desk

By Mitchell Belfer

Scene's from the Helsinki Book Launch of Small State, Dangerous Region: A Strategic Assessment of Bahrain

On 16 September 2014, Dr. Mitchell Belfer of Metropolitan University Prague launched his book entitled: Small State, Dangerous Region: A Strategic Assessment of Bahrain (Peter Lang Publishers, 2014) at the EU Commission Representative Office in Helsinki, Finland. Here are some video clips and pictures of the event, which attracted a wide audience from accross Finland's civil society, scholars and a small group of Bahrainis who travelled to Helsinki from Bahrain and Belgium. Special thanks to…

Editors desk

By Mitchell Belrfer

Press Release

The EU Commission Representation in Helsinki, Finland – or, as locals call it, the Europa Hall – held an event to bring together distinguished guests with diverse backgrounds to launch the book Small State, Dangerous Region: A Strategic Assessment of Bahrain, authored by Mitchell Belfer (Peter Lang, 2014). The audience included representatives of academia, political and social activists, diplomats and an assortment of members of civil society, locals and from Bahrain, who are interested in…

Issue 8:3

By Keith White-Hunt

How the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargements Weakened the CFSP and CSDP: A Socio-Economic and Geopolitical Analysis

ABSTRACT: From its very beginnings, defence and security related issues were a major concern of EU policy. However, it was the demise of the USSR in the early 1990’s and the end of the Cold War that – between 1998 and 2004 – gave a major push to the evolution of the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). These changes, combined with the expansion of the EU as a result of the rapid accession to membership of many new countries, spawned the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP)…

Issue 8:3

By Sigfrido Burgos Cáceres

China’s Multidimensional Juggle: The Challenges of a Rising Power

ABSTRACT: As the 21st century unfolds, it is almost unarguable that East and Southeast Asia will be increasingly important in global economic, political, and security affairs. China, depicted in media outlets as a state which is continually violating human rights, is dealing with recurrent internal problems such as corruption, economic rebalancing, growth rate slowdowns, income inequality, pollution, and social unrest. Globalisation and strong interdependence between states in the international…

Issue 8:3

By Archie B. Resos

Diplomatic Relations between the Republic of the Philippines and the East European Socialist Bloc under President Ferdinand E. Marcos

ABSTRACT: Diplomatic communiqués between the Philippines and the Eastern European Socialist Bloc found in the Department of Foreign Affairs in the Republic of the Philippines reveals a compendium of original data significant in tracing the inception of diplomatic relations between the Philippines and the Eastern European Socialist Bloc i.e. Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Yugoslavia. This is a pioneering work about the beginning of diplomatic…

Issue 8:3

By Abdullah Yateem

Religion, Identity and Citizenship: The Predicament of Shiʿa Fundamentalism in Bahrain

ABSTRACT: In 2011, Bahrain witnessed an unprecedented wave of political protests that came within a chain of protest movements in other Arab countries, which later came to be known as the “Arab Spring.” Irrespective of the difference in the appellations given to these protests, their occurrence in Bahrain in particular poses a number of questions, some of which touch upon the social and political roots of this movement, especially that they started in Bahrain, a Gulf state that has witnessed…

Issue 8:3

By Pavlo Ignatiev

Elections-2014 in Bangladesh: A Clash of “Warring Begums”

ABSTRACT: The article analyses events in the political life of Bangladesh in the post-military rule era—the rise to power of influential parties and their respective leaders and reasons of their animosity towards each other. This work argues that questionable judicial trails against opposition and serious problems with main earner of  hard currency – textile industry led by the end of 2013 to explosive political situation, which both sides are unwilling and unable to defuse. These events led to…

Issue 8:3

By Kateřina Werkman

Seeking Community Reconciliation through Traditional Ceremonies: A Strategy of Conflict Management

ABSTRACT: The debate on the role of traditional conflict management and reconciliation practices in modern post-war situations has been around for a while. The central concern is whether approaches that reflect the cultural context of the conflict setting would be better suited for responding to the challenges of reconciliation in the war-affected societies. In Sierra Leone, the government and the international donor community focused their efforts and funds on pursuing the judicial (through…

Issue 8:3

By Nuno Morgado

Vindicating Neoclassical Geopolitics, Challenging Postmodernism: A NewLook at an Old Problem

ABSTRACT: The objective of this work is to exhort the Academia towards a Neoclassical Geopolitics, both in terms of theory and methodology. The relevance of the problem – the validity of Neoclassical Geopolitics – is based on the hypothesis that geography influences the foreign policies of States. Such an assumption is then tested empirically. In terms of methodology, a “theory testing” approach is selected, through the hypothetico-deductive model from Popper, using essentially qualitative…

Issue 8:3

By Ostap Kushnir

From BSU to BSEC: The Evocation of Inter-War Geopolitical Fantasies

Abstract: This article embraces the political, cultural, and economic foundations of two inter-governmental bodies intended for the Black Sea region. The first is the Black Sea Union (BSU), the idea of which was coined by a Ukrainian geopolitical analyst, Yuriy Lypa, prior to WWII. The second is the current Organisation of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) which was established in 1992. By comparing these bodies the following goals were pursued: to trace the succession of ideas between…

Issue 8:3

By George Hays II

American “Foreign Policy” in Film: Post-World War II Identity Creation

ABSTRACT: This article continues the author’s previous examination of sub-elite identification through popular film from ‘Three Incarnations of The Quiet American: Applying Campbell’s “foreign policy” to Sub-Elite Identifiers.’  Departing from the argument made in that work, this article examines five films ranging in content from the Korean War to Terrorism in the 1990’s.  By applying the same theory and methodology to a wider range of conflicts, representations of those conflicts, and time…

Issue 8:3

By Oldřich Krulík and Zuzana Krulíková

The Business of Private Security in Europe: The Case of Bulgaria

ABSTRACT: This work offers readers’ information related to the infusion of private businesses into the area of private security in one of the EU’s “new” member states: Bulgaria. The materials and analysis in this text attempts to act as an inspirational probe that goes beyond publicly accessible documents prepared by some international private security associations so that a clearer picture of the sectors’ impact on security may be gleaned. Additionally, this work offers an analytic…

eContribution

By Nikol Chumová

Ebola: The Enemy Impervious to Sanctions

You numbly observe the chaos around you, from makeshift hospitals to screams from the distance and orders from people with green gloves inwhite clothing milling around the threat of Ebola contagion is a flight away. Headlines are meaningless compared to the personal experience. Of course, nobody wants to go through such an ordeal, but it may grip Europe before we know it. The disease is certainly on the march. The most severe outbreak of Ebola ever crossed the border of one more country last…

Editors desk

By Mitchell Belfer

Bahrain’s al Khalifa Dilemma

IntroductionWith the wider Middle East in a seemingly intractable crisis spiral, it is easy to lose track of specific national and historical contexts. Bahrain’s chapter in the now defunct Arab Spring has generally, but erroneously, been treated as a case of a pacifist opposition, composed of members of the Shia sect (majority) and a repressive Sunni government (minority). Not only does such loose demographic bookkeeping and simplistic categorisations intellectually detract from truly…

Editors desk

By Mitchell Belfer

Gaza, 2014: Where the Streets have No Names

It is a cycle. A deal sits within grasp. It literally sits on the table and awaits a nod, smile and elongated signatures. The deal is the result of a lull in violence that produces confidence and confidence generates channels of discussion and dialogue between the belligerents. Hamas may not recognise Israel, but it still speaks to it via European and Middle Eastern interlocutors. Fatah and Israel speak directly. In its turn, belligerent-to-belligerent dialogue is often the engine for…

2014 - Volume 8, Issue 3