African Union as a Platform of African Conflict Management


The article focuses on assessing the ability of the African Union to perform the policy, peacekeeping and peacemaking roles within its conflict management doctrine and it also discusses whether African security problems may be more easily solved by the AU as an organization with a continental profile or by some other African organization on lower level. According to authors, the AU suffers from similar deficits as local regional organizations, which considerably restrict its efficiency and make the gap between AU’s security mandate and the sources for its achievement, but it manages to perform the conflict management activities to a far greater degree than any other African organization at a much lower level has ever managed. With regard to that, the authors suggest an ideal profile of an actor capable of solving Africa’s security problems in the form of the AU and its African Peace and Security Architecture representing a platform of equal cooperation of the Union with regional organizations and combining the advantages of both of these actors’ approach towards conflict management.

16.12.2014 12:34:07 | read 20458x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

The Case of Northern Mali (Azawad) 2012-13

The State and Its Displacement by an Alternative Authority


Northern Mali (Azawad) is an area where the state is unable to fulfill its basic functions. A characteristic feature of the area is the fragmentation of power-political control and authority. This process culminated in 2012-2013 in the complete disintegration of the sovereign architecture of the Malian state. So, rather than the just the state itself, non-state entities have acquired control and authority that, in the Westphalian concept of statehood, they are not entitled to execute. This has not only involved the interference of other state actors, but also TNCs, INGOs and, in particular, violent non-state actors. Thus, various types of governance have emerged in the territory. With the aid of interpretive paths I will introduce typologies of actors who were involved in governance and typologies of territories where such governance took place. The synthesis of these two categories shows that the methods of governance and their consequences have gained highly different forms among the different types of actors.

16.12.2014 12:34:00 | read 6614x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

The V4 Countries and the Impacts of the Austerity Cuts on their Defence Spending and Armed Forces


This article analyses the impacts of the austerity cuts on the defence spending and armed forces of the V4 countries. This is achieved through combination of three analytical approaches - firstly by looking at defence expenditure in constant $ from SIPRI data, secondly by comparing the respective structures of these defence budgets from the NATO data, and thirdly by analysing how these developments and economic realities translated into the level of the respective national armies and if/how were the political ambitions for foreign deployments for these armies modified, if/how was the force structure reformed, if/which capabilities were slashed and if/which modernisation plans were postponed. This research design yielded several results even though the utility of the V4 analytical framework proved to be, thanks to vast discrepancies between the sample countries, limited. The conditions of small states armies did not allow the V4 countries to make significant cuts in the number of military personnel as bigger countries in Europe were able to execute in order to protect their equipment expenditures that are vital for modernisation. Consequently, the V4 countries were left with soaring personnel expenditures and gradually diminishing funds for investments. Curiously, Slovakia proved to be the only country where the decline in defence expenditure can be at least partially tied to austerity cuts and the economic crisis.

16.12.2014 12:33:49 | read 11765x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Visegrad Four EU Battlegroup: Meaning and Progress


In 2011, the states of the so-called Visegrad Four (V4), i.e. the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia, decided to form a joint European Union battlegroup by 2016, available for rapid deployment within ten days and within a radius of six thousand kilometres from Brussels. The intention to establish this military formation had become the first initiative of its kind within the V4 ever. The present article therefore aims to examine the content of the mutual military cooperation among the CR, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia in the form of the V4 battlegroup and make readers acquainted with relevant and up-to-date information about the process of the formation of the V4 battlegroup and its importance for the military cooperation of the V4 countries. In order to achieve that, the authors introduce the previous experience of the individual V4 countries with the formation of EU battlegroups, explain the motives of the V4 countries to form a joint battlegroup, describe the path leading to the creation of the V4 BG as well as the possibilities of its deployment and the question of financing, and finally they deal with the perspectives of the V4 BG from the point of view of its importance for further development of military cooperation between the V4 countries.

16.12.2014 12:33:38 | read 17104x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Still All Quiet on the Orbital Front?

The Slow Proliferation of Anti-Satellite Weapons


The article strives to explore the issue of relatively slow proliferation of anti-satellite weapons (ASATs). Until now only three countries developed the ASATs. The issue is examined through the analytically separate factors that might motivate or dissuade the ASAT proliferation. The main strategic roles that ASATs may play in a state’s security policy are defined, and their relevance vis-à-vis proliferation is assessed. The roles include: a defensive measure against adversary’s space-based nuclear weapons, a force multiplier for a nuclear first strike, a countermeasure against adversary’s anti-ballistic missile defense (ABM), an asymmetric counter to a technologically superior adversary, and a counter-value weapon. Other explored factors carrying a potential relevance for the ASAT proliferation include legal constrains, environmental and technical aspects.

16.12.2014 12:33:31 | read 7770x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Neither Conventional War, nor a Cyber War, but a Long-Lasting and Silent Hybrid War


The following article perceives selected conflicts from the perspective of hybrid warfare and its component of information operations and analyzes consequent impacts on international security. We are witnessing rising number of cyber incidents and related discussion over a cyber war under the light of doom scenarios without taking into consideration the term “net war” despite the fact it was discerned from “cyber war” in 1993. In net war information manipulation emanating from decentralized sources matters, however, we are still living in a situation where a strategy of influencing minds of public or elite are neither appropriately addressed by politicians, nor by national security strategies. Nevertheless, China and Russia are having information operations as a military component included in their doctrines and their highly effective consequences are evidently visible as late as today. The hybrid campaigns might be easily conducted by circumventing international law through attribution problem in cyberspace through current modern communication technologies. We would face a rising, silent, but highly effective hybrid warfare if any defensive measures such as “mental resilience” are not adopted. We would face it preferably without being aware of it. Finally, the result would undermine credibility, or legitimacy, of the Western democratic governments not only in the eyes of their own citizens.

16.12.2014 12:33:25 | read 13731x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Aplication of System Dynamics in the Process of Sharing Military Capabilities


The article describes the application of system dynamics in the process military capabilities sharing of the Czech Republic with Alliance allies. The aim is not to capture the problem in all its aspects, but is focused on the process of multinational capabilities sharing with accent for the Army of the Czech Republic, which has been suffer in the last few years the reduction in the defence spending. Czech Republic gradually came with its defence budget into the group of countries that profit from its membership in NATO, but without its own contribution for developing of its military capabilities. The basic precondition for the capability and readiness of the Alliance to face current and new security challenges, is the necessity to have adequate capabilities. For achieving this goal is essential higher and more responsible involvement the European countries of the Alliance for collective defence, including the Czech Republic. Ongoing Ukrainian crisis and the behavior of the Russian Federation represent a fundamental change in the security environment in Europe and therefore changing the assumptions on which the Alliance is preparing to fulfil tasks. Solving problems in capabilities can be achieve by properly-designed investments in upgrading, by improving NATO defence planning process and accordance with national defence planning process, by consistent execution capability targets that this process generates, but also by use of multinational capabilities sharing. Pooling and sharing capability among individual member states can have a significant impact on the way, how to replace the missing defence sources or how to effectively use increasing of defence budgets, which the Alliance, including the Czech Republic, declared at the summit in Wales.

16.12.2014 12:33:19 | read 10102x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Strategic Communications in NATO Counterinsurgency Operations


The article deals with the concept of the strategic communication in NATO counterinsurgency operations. As this is a rather new concept surrounded by many ambiguities, the primary goal of the article is to introduce the concept and outline the boundaries with its related concepts (public diplomacy, psychological operations, information operations etc.). The main aim is to assess the role of the concept in the official NATO documents and in the Alliance’s counterinsurgency operations (ISAF mission). The paper discusses as well whether the Alliance used the strategic communications successfully and alternatively, what were the limitations of using the concept. The text based on the available data sources arrives to the conclusion that the Alliance did apply the concept of StratCom and it was done in harmony with its counterinsurgency strategy and its comprehensive approach to crisis management. However, the concept was so far adopted only at the highest level of the organization and furthermore it was not adopted by all member states. Even though the concept did address some of the earlier failures and shortcomings of the Alliance in the information sphere, some of the limitations inherent even in the structure of the NATO itself remain and lead to a question whether any to-be execution of the strategic communication by the Alliance is actually feasible.

16.12.2014 12:33:04 | read 8555x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Voluntary Civic Participation in Defence

The Concept, Experience, and Perspectives


The article deals with citizens’ voluntary involvement in military and paramilitary structures and activities related both to war and peacetime. At present, this kind of civic participation is marginalized, or quite suppressed in most of NATO and EU member states. However, in some countries the voluntary civic participation still plays a significant role in total defence capacity. So a decision whether to incorporate and maintain a volunteer civic element in the armed forces and in defence capacities or not remains a strategic choice to be made by governments and nations in the sphere of national defence. The article briefly defines features of the examined phenomenon; then it explores and reviews selected significant forms of citizens’ defence volunteering in Western countries, both in past and present; lastly, the perspectives of civic voluntary participation are assessed with regard to recent trends of societal evolution and defence budgets reduction.

16.12.2014 12:32:58 | read 11487x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article
Created 16.12.2014 12:34:12 | read 8389x | Frank