The PANDORA research group gained interesting insights into the nexus of online and offline radicalization processes.
The PANDORA research group gained interesting insights into the nexus of online and offline radicalization processes. | Photo: Peakpx | Free use

The Great Divide? The Online-Offline Nexus and Insights from Research on the Far-Right in Germany

Research financed in the framework of the BMBF’s public security programme is still predominantly occupied with two issues: “online-radicalization” and “international terrorism”. The emphasis on „international terrorism“ still leads to an exclusive focus on “Islamist terrorism” and completely ignores the discussion of and a stronger need for research on right-wing terrorism. The emphasis on “online-radicalization” […]

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Eine General Atomics MQ-9 "Reaper" der United States Air Force in Afghanistan | Photo: Flickr | CC BY-NC 2.0

Die Drohne kommt.
Was die aktuelle #Drohnendebatte2020 noch bringen kann – und was nicht

Deutschland debattiert über bewaffnete Drohnen. Mitte Mai übertrug das Bundesministerium der Verteidigung einen ganzen Nachmittag lang Live-Podiumsdiskussionen im Internet, die das Thema Drohnen aus ethischer, völkerrechtlicher und politischer Sicht beleuchteten. Unter dem Hashtag #Drohnendebatte2020 fand auf Twitter eine intensive Debatte statt. Allerdings geht es nicht mehr um die Frage, ob man Drohnen beschaffen soll, die bewaffnet werden können. Diese Entscheidung ist bereits 2018 mit der Festlegung auf das System Heron TP gefallen. Jetzt wird darüber diskutiert, ob man bewaffnungsfähige Drohnen auch tatsächlich bewaffnen soll.

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For security authorities, automated monitoring of social media is gaining increasing importance.
For security authorities, automated monitoring of social media is gaining increasing importance. | Photo: Dollar Gill on Unsplash

Early Warning? Opportunities and limitations of automated Internet monitoring

Policymakers have invested considerable effort and research funding to understand the role of the Internet in radicalisation processes and attack planning. This includes approaches to identify radicalisation or “weak signals” for terrorist intentions in online behaviour. As a result, security authorities have become increasingly interested in approaches to computer science including Artificial Intelligence. Nevertheless, what results have research efforts thus far yielded? Can computer science prove useful? And what are the possibilities and limitations of automated tools?

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Yezidi women from different parts of the Kurdistan region waiting for the daily communal lunch in the holy Yezidi temple Lalish. | Photo: Rosa Burç
Yezidi women from different parts of the Kurdistan region waiting for the daily communal lunch in the holy Yezidi temple Lalish. | Photo: © Rosa Burç

Endangered Future: Yezidis in Post-Genocide Iraq and the Need for International Support

As the international memory of ISIS’ genocide against the Yezidi population of Şengal in Northern Iraq recedes, its victims have been left to languish increasingly hopelessly, in refugee camps with little realistic prospect of returning to their homes. Tens of thousands of displaced Yezidis remain dispersed across Northern Iraq, hundreds of kidnapped Yezidi girls and women are unaccounted for and the fates of many of their male relatives unknown. In the short term, there is an urgent need for international protection from further attacks, the recognition of a political status for Şengal and immediate aid for refugee camps to create the conditions for Yezidi genocide survivors to return, resettle and gain a sense of political stability and empowerment.

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Stoppschild | Photo: Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Wenn das „Feld“ geschlossen ist: (Feld-)Forschung als Krisenpraxis in Zeiten von Corona

Die weltweite Ausbreitung der Corona-Pandemie und die damit verbundenen restriktiven Maßnahmen gefährden all jene Forschung, für die menschliche Interaktion und Präsenz ein wichtiger Bestandteil der Wissensproduktion ist. Anhand unserer eigenen Erfahrungen mit einer abgebrochenen Feldforschung in Burkina Faso diskutieren wir, wie in der aktuellen Krise das Forschen selbst zur Krisenpraxis wird und welche Konsequenzen geschlossene „Felder“ und Unplanbarkeiten in Zeiten von Corona für die (Feld-)Forschungspraxis der Friedens- und Konfliktforschung haben.

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte at the Caraga State University in Cabadbaran City, Agusan del Norte. | Photo: Joey Dalumpines | Public Domain

Duterte, Estrada, Thaksin and the Battle Cry of Populism

The current and former leaders of the Philippines and Thailand, Rodrigo Duterte, Joseph Estrada, and Thaksin Shinawatra and their policies have in varying degrees been described and explained through the distinct lens of populism. I argue that in these East Asian cases, this category does neither fit the leaders nor their policies. To members of the domestic establishment elites and upper middle class intellectuals it rather serves as a political weapon to fend off political alternatives that threaten to sideline them.

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Medellín barrio Villa Turbay - Línea H del Metrocable entre las estaciones Las Torres y Villa Sierra
Medellín barrio Villa Turbay - Línea H del Metrocable entre las estaciones Las Torres y Villa Sierra. | Photo: Felipe Restrepo Acosta | CC BY-SA 4.0

Se trata de estructuras, no de ayuda – Asentamientos informales y la desigualdad de la pandemia en Medellín, Colombia

En Colombia, el 25 de marzo se instaló una cuarentena nacional debido a la pandemia de la Corona. Pocos días antes, varias organizaciones no gubernamentales y comunitarias ya habían publicado una declaratoria  con una alerta temprana a la alcaldía  de Medellín – la segunda ciudad más grande de Colombia, premiada varias veces por su innovadora política urbana. En ese declaratoria, pidieron que se prestara especial atención a las personas que vivían en asentamientos informales y zonas periféricas: Las desigualdades existentes y las diversas formas de discriminación se exacerban debido a la creciente precarización de la informalidad a través de las medidas preventivas actuales. Los residentes de los barrios marginales se ven privados de los modos de sustento que han generado de forma independiente. Las intersecciones de las opresiones exponen a esas personas a riesgos mortales. Se necesita urgentemente un ingreso básico y protección de la salud.

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Medellín barrio Villa Turbay - Línea H del Metrocable entre las estaciones Las Torres y Villa Sierra
Medellín barrio Villa Turbay - Line H of the Metrocable between Las Torres and Villa Sierra stations. | Photo: Felipe Restrepo Acosta | CC BY-SA 4.0

It is About Structures, Not Aid – Informal Settlements and the Inequality of the Pandemic in Medellín, Colombia

In Colombia, a national quarantine due to the Corona pandemic was installed on March 25th. A few days earlier, several non-governmental and community-based organizations had already published an alert statement in the city of Medellín – the second largest city of Colombia, awarded multiple times for its innovative urban policy. In this statement, they called for special attention to people living in informal settlements and peripheral areas: Existing inequalities and various forms of discrimination are exacerbated by the increasing precarisation of informality through current preventive measures. Residents of marginalized neighbourhoods get deprived of livelihoods that they have built up independently. The intersections of oppressions expose those people to deadly risks. A basic income and health protection are urgently needed.

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Peace and Development 2020: Cover of the publication

Thinking Development and Peace Together: Suggestions for German and international development cooperation

The expectation that development cooperation should contribute to transform violent conflict has increased. Our new study shows: there is no lack of knowledge about what is needed for development cooperation to contribute to peace. There is a lack of implementation – especially as regards the primacy of prevention and the age-old question of policy coherence.

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Prozessauftakt gegen mutmaßliche syrische Folterer in Koblenz
Zum ersten Mal stehen ehemalige Mitglieder des Assad-Regimes wegen Folter vor Gericht. | Foto: © picture alliance/Thomas Lohnes/AFP Pool/dpa)

Syrische Folterer vor Gericht: Die partielle Rückkehr des universellen Rechts

Am 23. April 2020 begann in Koblenz ein Prozess, der weltweit Aufmerksamkeit auf sich zieht: Vor dem Oberlandesgericht müssen sich zwei Syrer verantworten, die an der systematischen Folter von Oppositionellen mitgewirkt haben sollen. Der Fall, über den in der Presse ausführlich berichtet wurde, fußt auf dem weltweit immer häufiger angewandten Weltrechtsprinzip. Welche Probleme die Anwendung des Prinzips mit sich bringt, wie berechtigt Kritik daran ist und wie das Koblenzer Verfahren vor diesem Hintergrund einzuordnen ist, beleuchtet dieses Spotlight.

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