The Risks of Future Defence Capability Development


In the post-Cold War era the main purpose behind developing defence capabilities in NATO countries has been to achieve a technological advantage over the potential enemy. While it is reasonable in its own right, the complexity and the cost of newly developed military equipment are becoming an issue at both strategic and operational levels. Taking into account all the potential threats in the near future, I will argue that this struggle for ultimate technological superiority might actually decrease the overall effectiveness of the modern armed forces. To analyse this notion, I will describe and assess the current trends in developing armament and, based on the outcome, try to predict the long term effects.

15.6.2014 11:15:24 | read 11370x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

System Dynamics as a Tool for Security Research


This article aims to introduce system dynamics as a new methodology or an analytical framework for research in the field of security and strategic studies and to shed some light upon its basic principles and building blocks. It offers a tool which can describe and model conflicts, actors, threats and even whole security concepts in a new manner and discover new causalities or even predict future states in the process. Even though the origins of system dynamics can be found in an entirely different disciplines, it recently found its place even in the domain of security research, where it is being used to model current threats. Apart from dissecting merits of this method, this article should also provide sufficient information to allow the reader to understand any other paper using system dynamics as its primary methodology.

15.6.2014 11:15:33 | read 12818x | posts: 1 | Frank | Full article

Critical Comments on Current Research Agenda in Cyber Security


The following article presents an alternative critical perspective of the cyber security research agenda. The article opens with criticism of the securitization discourse that uses analogies of historical events with events in cyber space. The author argues that such an approach is inappropriate, and that events of such impact are very unlikely to take place. The events that have already shaped our way of thinking - such as the Estonian attacks - caused significant damage to the respective country; nevertheless, the very same attack today would not do the same harm, thanks to the different level of critical infrastructure in Estonia. Another example, Stuxnet, is also an event of high impact, but with a low probability of happening in the future. Due to the complexity of the supporting operation of the attack, it would not lead to a cyber world war. The future will bring more complex, less visible, completely covered and precise operations that will take advantage of all cyber space features, rather than a cybergeddon comparable to some historical event or a nuclear scenario. The author proposes three directions of desired research agenda in the cyber security field. Firstly, the development of normative framework aimed at a better understanding of cyber events; secondly, a thorough research of cyber space leading to appropriate space conceptualization; and thirdly, the reevaluation of cyber warfare concept in the light of the cyber space novelty.

15.6.2014 11:15:41 | read 12214x | Frank | Full article

U.S. Nuclear Policy after Cold War

Evolution in the Context of WMD Proliferation


WMD proliferation is often considered to be one of the gravest security threats of our time. This article aims to explore how the post-Cold War securitization of this phenomenon influenced the evolution of U.S. nuclear policy. The systemic change related to the collapse of bipolar world order is depicted as a major impulse which led to the need to redefine the role of American nuclear weapons. The conceptual shift from global to regional approach in U.S. foreign and defense policy as well as particular experience of the Gulf War brought about the emergence and subsequent institutionalization of a number of counterproliferation programs and initiatives, effectively serving as a new rationale for U.S. nuclear arsenal. In the context of U.S. nuclear policy of the first post-Cold War decade, the author identifies an inception of a number of still highly relevant strategic trends. These include qualitative improvements of nuclear weapons towards their greater practical usability in the new security environment, limited ballistic missile defense as a key strategic defensive element against WMD attack, emphasis on flexible nuclear planning or the formulation declaratory policy for nuclear use. A detailed exploration ofthe particular circumstances in which these trends appeared and have become an integral part of U.S. strategic posture is therefore a crucial prerequisite for deeper understanding of contemporary U.S. nuclear policy.

15.6.2014 11:15:49 | read 7882x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

The Evolving Nature of the Armed Conflict in South Ossetia

From “Frozen” to “Hot” and Back


This article explores the conflict processes in one of the most volatile regions in post-Soviet space - South Ossetia. The objective of the analysis is to bring more nuanced and explicit distinction to the understanding of the heterogeneous nature of the armed conflict. By studying the evolution of issues at stake and conflict processes we can trace the pattern of conflict behavior. The study focuses on an assessment of the extent to which ethnicity is merely a convenient common dominator to mobilize ethnic groups in the struggle over resources, land, or power. This study rejects the common notion that the contemporary conflicts in the South Ossetia can be understood as “unfinished business” from the past ethnic conflicts that had been “frozen” under the communist regime.

15.6.2014 11:15:59 | read 23251x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

The Security Question in the post-Mubarak Egypt

The Security Void in Sinai


The article deals with the security situation in Egypt after the ousting of Mubarak’s government in 2011. It addresses implications of the security void in the Sinai Peninsula, which are closely related to the failure of the Egyptian security forces to ensure security in this area. The focus is turned at the growth of violent attacks against security personnel and cross-border attacks aimed at Israeli targets. By comparing three periods - before the 2011 uprising; between the 2011 uprising and 2013 Mursi’s deposition; and the period after Mursi’s deposition on July 3, 2013 - the article maps changes in the pattern of violent conduct. It documents a significant rise of violence and intensification of Jihadist activities in the region after the uprising of 2011. Mursi’s deposition triggered further intensification of violence in the region, as well as novel patterns of violence such as the use of sophisticated weaponry and methods of combat (e.g. suicide attacks). This change is linked to the expansion of the Jihadist agenda and the greater involvement of the Jihadist groups in the battle against the Egyptian security forces. The article suggests that the core of the security crisis is closely linked to negligence and marginalization of the local population by the government. Therefore, as long as Sinai is approached merely through firm security measures that fail to address the developmental needs of the locals, the security of the region cannot be guaranteed.

15.6.2014 11:16:07 | read 12177x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article

Israeli Conceptualization of the Border´s Defensibility

Time for Change?


The article deals with important aspects determining the defensibility of the State of Israel borderlines and its current conditions. It outlines trends and tendencies in Israeli approach to this burning issue and depicts important political and military - strategic factors concerning Israeli concept for countering military and paramilitary (i.e. terrorist, insurgent etc.) threats in border region. Particular focus is dedicated to the new regional security situation after the outbreak of the Arab Spring and its impact on securing the Israeli sovereignty. Furthermore, it depicts the question whether current unsatisfied security situation in surrounding Arab countries could eventually turn into an outbreak of conventional military conflict and/or whether the State of Israel could possibly face concentrated strain of radical Islamic groups operating in the border area. Last but not least, the article concludes an outline of Israeli doctrinal approaches and examines the impact of budgetary restraints into the development of IDF.

15.6.2014 11:16:18 | read 8304x | posts: 0 | Frank | Full article
Created 15.6.2014 11:15:11 | read 6083x | Frank