from the world's big
Despite potential good intentions, interventionist policies are often viewed by classical liberals as violations of individual freedoms.
- Intervention covers a range of activity broader than just war. Some interventions have more humanitarian aims, such as disaster relief and development aid.
- Oftentimes, the drive behind many instances of intervention involves some form of political, economic, or social outcome.
- There are important questions to consider regarding knowledge, goals, incentives, and unintended consequences. The answers to these indicate whether an intervention is necessary and appropriate.
Proponents of drones in foreign conflicts argue that it reduces harm for civilians and U.S. military personnel alike. Here's why that might be wrong.
- There has been a huge increase in drone usage since the war on terror. Proponents of drone warfare claim it reduces civilian casualties and collateral damage, that it's cheaper than conventional warfare tactics, and that it's safer for U.S. military personnel.
- The data suggests those claims may be false, says scholar Abigail Blanco. Drones are, at best, about equivalent to conventional technologies, but in some cases may actually be worse.
- Blanco explains how skewed US government definitions don't give honest data on civilian casualties. Drone operators also suffer worse psychological repercussions following a drone strike because of factors such as the intimacy of prolonged surveillance and heat-sensing technology which lets the operator observe the heat leaving a dying body to confirm a kill.
Trump's Middle East peace plan contains the first map of a Palestinian state that 'Israel can live with'.
- Trump's Middle East plan is the first U.S. proposal to contain a map of a two-state solution.
- Considering Israel's close involvement, this map represents a Palestine 'Israel can live with'.
- But Palestinians are unlikely to agree to give up East Jerusalem—or much else.
Caught between a napkin and a conspiracy<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjYyODkxNC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyODYxOTM3OH0.Tjx1_ay50MGY0NsaBX0WHDt61QO4t1TJYk7Fke8wYKo/img.jpg?width=980" id="d6a9f" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="a263ef36a4a3f501488ac104f733a67d" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Detail of the Conceptual Map for a Palestinian state, proposed by U.S. president Donald Trump." />
The Palestinians' only gain: two zones ceded by Israel in the southern desert, one for 'high-tech manufacturing', the other for 'residential and agricultural' purposes.
Image: The White House<p>"I say to Trump and Netanyahu: Jerusalem is not for sale," fulminated Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas in a televised speech from Ramallah. "Your (…) conspiracy will not pass."</p><p><span></span>Meeting with such fury from one of the two parties it aims to reconcile, Trump's Peace Plan, proposed in Washington DC with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in attendance, is unlikely to succeed. </p><p><span></span>But there is one major difference between this and all previous U.S. proposals to resolve the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians: it contains a map. And even if the Trump plan will follow all its predecessors into the dustbin of history, the map remains a significant first. </p><p><span></span>Never before has a U.S. administration officially proposed borders for a Palestinian state. Considering the close political concertation between the U.S. and Israel—its main ally in the region—it is safe to assume that those borders have been seen and approved by the Israeli side. Which would also be a first. Not that no borders haven't ever been proposed, but they have never been published. </p><p>The <em>Jerusalem Post</em> <a href="https://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/This-peace-plan-comes-with-a-map-why-is-this-significant-analysis-615692" target="_blank">cites</a> the example of Ehud Olmert, when he was prime minister of Israel in 2008, showing Palestinian president Abbas a map during a private meeting. It showed Israel retreating from 94% of the West Bank (i.e. almost to the 1967 border), excepting some large settlement blocks. As an equivalent of the remaining 6%, land inside Israel was offered. Israel would also withdraw from East Jerusalem; the Temple Mount and the Old City would be placed under international control. </p><p>Due to the sensitive nature of Olmert's plan—surely too generous for hardliners on the Israeli side—the Israeli PM did not want to hand over the map to Abbas, who sketched it onto a napkin after the meeting. The 'napkin map' became public in 2013.<br></p>
Conceptual map<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjYyODkzMy9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTU5NTYwNzIyMn0.5vRmcttnMGjZIYKZ8bfhkmxzT5AoBHdFGJocDLmuQPQ/img.jpg?width=980" id="f3e37" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="20f94aa32c362584b4f42d3312545fd4" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="The conceptual map for a Palestinian state, proposed by U.S. president Donald Trump." />
Under the Trump plan, Israel cedes 70% of the West Bank to the Palestinian state.
Image: The White House<p>The 'Conceptual Map' in Trump's plan is the first one ever published officially by the American (and/or Israeli) side. It is less generous than the Olmert plan:</p><ul><li>Under the Trump plan, Israel cedes 70% of the <strong>West Bank</strong> to the Palestinian state. The PLO countered that Trump's plan gives Palestinians control over just 15% of 'historical Palestine'.</li><li>The entirety of <strong>Jerusalem</strong> and its immediate surroundings remain under Israeli control. Jerusalem remains the undivided capital of Israel. Palestinians may establish a capital in the city's east.</li><li>Israel maintains territorial control over the <strong>Jordan River valley</strong>, cutting off Palestine from direct contact with Jordan. However, two roads and border crossings would offer access to Palestine's Arab neighbor to the east.</li><li>Large blocks of <strong>Israeli settlements</strong> are annexed to Israel, cutting into (and through) Palestinian territory, which, as the map indicates, would not be a contiguous zone, but consist of several large 'islands'. Trump nevertheless said the U.S. would "work to create a contiguous territory within the future Palestinian state."</li><li>The <strong>Gaza Strip</strong> remains remote from the rest of Palestinian territory, but would be connected to the West Bank via a tunnel running under Israeli territory.</li><li>Compensation for the loss of territory in the West Bank would be provided in the form of <strong>two blocks of desert territory</strong> on the border with Egypt, linked to Gaza via a thin strip of land.</li><li>Palestinian state would be granted access to <strong>seaport facilities</strong> in two Israeli port cities, Ashdod and Haifa.</li></ul><p>President Abbas's fury is understandable. This proposal turns Israel's occupation and takeover of large parts of East Jerusalem and the West Bank into a <em>fait accompli</em>. But while the overall plan may fail, keep a good eye on this map. For the first time, it shows the extent of a Palestinian state that the Israeli state may feel comfortable living with. And that's an important step. Even if this may not be a state the Palestinians may feel comfortable living <em>in</em>.<br></p><p>Map found <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1222224528065155072" target="_blank">here</a> on Donald Trump's Twitter. <br></p><p>Strange Maps #1008</p><p><em>Got a strange map? Let me know at </em><a href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org</a>.</p>
When it comes to foreign intervention, we often overlook the practices that creep into life back home.
- Methods used in foreign intervention often resurface domestically, whether that's in the form of skills or technology.
- University of Tampa professor Abigail Blanco calls this the boomerang effect. It's a consequence not often thought about when we discuss foreign intervention.
- The three channels to consider when examining the boomerang effect include human capital in the form of skills, administrative dynamics, and physical capital in the form of tools and technology.
Researchers believe that war exacerbates climate change, threatening the environment and making future wars more likely.
- In times of war, otherwise atrocious crimes against nature become routine.
- The U.S. Department of Defense is one of the largest consumers of fossil fuels in the world.
- By polluting the earth to prepare for war, the Pentagon prepares a world in which war becomes more likely.
The environmental costs of war<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjQ4ODIyNy9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzMTA4ODk3MH0.mnCGF4zlvC6o5dfDCh1O-KwAXuWujzx8rnDQd1ulodA/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C179%2C0%2C180&height=700" id="cad84" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="f847271a588090ffb98332b0cb9d3ff7" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />
Image Source: Wikimedia<p>As power struggles between nations escalate to armed conflicts and hot wars, the environment and ecosystems remain silent casualties. War radically changes the parameters for normalcy, and otherwise atrocious crimes against nature become not only justified, but viewed as necessary.</p><p>In war zones, land and natural resources are often contaminated by the oil from military vehicles and chemical weapons. <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23729095" target="_blank">Depleted uranium</a> from ammunition rounds used in Iraq, for instance, left behind radiation that poisoned the soil and water in Iraq, creating a carcinogenic environment according to studies that linked the chemical residue of the weapons to increased cancer in the country. Furthermore, there's the pollution caused by <a href="https://www.abcwua.org/kirtland-fuel-spill.aspx" target="_blank">toxic fuel spills</a> that can happen at air force bases, and the oil and chemical leaks that happen when<a href="https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/nov/06/whats-the-environmental-impact-of-modern-war" target="_blank"> infrastructure is damaged in war zones</a>. Another problem is the deliberate destruction of oil fields and military base garbage that goes up in flames <a href="https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/burn-pits/7979/" target="_blank">in burn pits</a>.</p><p>In war-zones, deforestation can be another major issue. When wars drag out for a long time, people in those regions become internally displaced and need to migrate. In those situations, people try to heat themselves during the winter, causing deforestation further facilitated by warlords. <a href="https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/crisis-high-price-deforestation-afghanistan-190703123040274.html" target="_blank">In Afghanistan</a>, cutting down timber and capturing wildlife for sale (like tigers) is encouraged by the Taliban to raise revenue for the group.</p>