Military Science

A Note on Turkey and the Kurdish Issue: “Hearts & Minds” out the Window

Created on Monday, 05 November 2012 08:56 Published Date
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PKK TurkeyThere has been almost two months since around seven hundred (700) Kurdish inmates went on hunger strike in Turkish prisons. They are demanding better conditions for the PKK’s (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) imprisoned leader (Abdullah Öcalan) as well as greater minority rights for the Kurds, such as the right to use their language for instruction purposes and in courts. This development has sparked a broader debate involving, among other things, Prime Minister Erdoğan questioning the motives of the inmates and the extent to which the strike was real – calling it a “show”. An important degree of attention has also been given to the health of the inmates and the possibility that after a point, deaths may begin (see here, here and here).



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cuban missile crisisThroughout the Cuban Missile Crisis both parts showed self-restraint despite certain blunders or oversights, because their leaders were rational players and wanted to avoid the infamous Mutually Assured Destruction. They were both influenced by their bureaucracies and they both had “hawks” and “doves” among their advisors. Nevertheless, they were rational and they were sure of their counterpart’s rationality, too. We could wrongly assume that deterrence is achieved when both parties are lucid. What would have happened if the two opponents had not have the false impression of being equal and had not been afraid of retaliation? From Thucydides times the question is rhetoric. The stronger would have prevailed. 





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Leviathan: The Great European Divide

Created on Thursday, 19 July 2012 09:49 Published Date
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Divide-and-conquerIn 1651 English political philosopher Thomas Hobbes wrote “Leviathan” in which he said prophetically, “The only way to erect…a common power, as may be able to defend [men] from the invasion of foreigners, and the inquiries of one another... is to confer all their power and strength upon one man, or upon one assembly of men...Leviathan”. Hunkered down behind the Eurozone crisis is Europe’s key existential question; can the future prosperity, stability and, indeed, democracy of Europeans be afforded by one single super-Leviathan?
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