• Possible Lessons from the Cuban Missile Crisis for Ending the Ukraine Conflict

    Imprimer

    Nine months into the Ukraine war, are we allowed to imagine some diplomatic solution to end the carnage? While President Volodymyr Zelensky has put forward terms of a peace settlement highly favorable to Ukraine, most reports on the war merely describe the horrors taking place. There have been no formal negotiations between Russia and Ukraine or between the United States and Russia. Analogies with another major crisis and the process in finding its solution might clarify how an agreement could be reached.

    Lire la suite

    Lien permanent 1 commentaire
  • Peace Through Pieces and the Grain Deal: Can Functionalism Help End the War in Ukraine?

    Imprimer

    There has been new-found optimism in Geneva, although fleeting, about the war in Ukraine; and it wasn’t because of the results of the midterm U.S. election. “The resumption of the talks on a memorandum between Russia and the UN on the export of grain and fertilizer is another positive development for International Geneva,” wrote Philippe Mottaz in The Geneva Observer, the website of record for International Geneva. (Full disclosure: I am a contributor to The G/O.) While the resumption of talks was declared a “modest” step forward in returning Russian and Ukrainian grain and fertilizer to the world, according to Mottaz, it may have been a harbinger of larger and more needed talks about stopping the war in Ukraine. The underlying premise of Mottaz’s optimism was that by providing a space for dialogue the grain talks could lead to future peace talks and settlement. 

    Lire la suite

    Lien permanent 0 commentaire
  • Is the Trump Craziness Over?

    Imprimer

    I was prepared to write an article condemning the mainstreaming of Trump’s populism. About 300 Republicans who deny President Joseph Biden’s victory in the 2020 election were GOP candidates on the national and state levels. But many of the candidates specifically backed by Donald Trump like Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania were not elected. In the end, however, about 80 election deniers were elected to the House of Representatives.  

    Lire la suite

    Lien permanent 0 commentaire
  • Modern Climate Civil Disobedience

    Imprimer

    Careful observers of actions by environmentalists such as splashing paintings or gluing themselves to pavement recognize that the activists come from a long tradition of civil disobedience. The Transcendentalist American writer and philosopher Henry David Thoreau wrote an essay on civil disobedience, published in 1849, to explain his refusal to pay a tax to help subsidize the U.S. war with Mexico and his opposition to the government’s position on slavery. (He was imprisoned for a very short period of time.) Northern California today has a War Tax Resistance (NCWTR) movement that is affiliated with the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee. Thoreau’s tradition lives on, if only among a select few. But how is splashing paintings (more specifically splashing the glass protecting valuable paintings), and gluing oneself to pavement similar to not paying taxes to protest slavery, war and militarism? Is contemporary climate activism a modern update of Thoreau’s civil disobedience? 

    Lire la suite

    Lien permanent 2 commentaires