Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Call for Papers: Democracy & Society, Volume 9, Issue 1 - Ten Years into the War on Terror

via PSRT-L:
We are seeking well-written, interesting submissions of 1500-2000 words on the themes below, including summaries and/or excerpts of recently completed research, new publications, and works in progress. Submissions for the issueare due Friday, October 21, 2011.

Al Qaeda’s terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 fundamentally reorientedUS national security policy towards fighting terrorism. The fight has led tosome tangible victories: no attacks on US soil over the past decade,weakening the Taliban in Afghanistan, dismantling Al Qaeda, and killingOsama bin Laden. Nevertheless, the war on terror has extracted high costs:expensive and militarily draining wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well asproxy wars and lower-level conflicts in the broader Middle East, an erosionof the US’ reputation and authority in the region, and a diversion ofattention from - or perhaps an acceleration of - other national securityexigencies such as the rise of China, a diminishing US military capacity toproject force globally, and a weakening US economy. Therefore it isreasonable to ask, ten years after the September 11 attacks, whether theworld in general and the United States specifically are safer places becauseof the war on terror? Even if the answer is yes, do the benefits the US hasobtained outweigh or justify the costs? A decade into the war, a number ofquestions emerge, some of which include:

§ After spending over a trillion dollars in Iraq, losing thousands ofUS troops, and causing the deaths of many more Iraqis, did the US benefitfrom overthrowing Saddam Hussein? Has Iran profited even more?

§ After pouring a vast amount of money, troops, and effort intoAfghanistan, the country remains fragile at best, and real concerns exist asto whether the Karzai government will fall if/when the US pulls out itstroops. Do the benefits that the US gained in Afghanistan - eliminating AlQaeda’s operational capacity there and weakening the Taliban - justify thecosts?

§ US intervention to dismantle Al Qaeda in Pakistan has destabilizedthe country and increased its priority as a national security concernbecause of the country’s nuclear arsenal. Did Al Qaeda’s presence inPakistan justify the results of US policy to weaken the terrorist network?

§ Is there a relationship between the effects of the war on terror -either positive or negative - and the revolutions sweeping the broaderMiddle East? Does the tainted reputation of the US there prevent it fromplaying any meaningful, supportive role in these changes?

§ Finally, while the US was engrossed in its pursuits in the broaderMiddle East, have these pursuits diverted attention from - or perhaps evenworsened - other exigent national security concerns such as the rise ofChina, an overstretched US military, and a weakened US economy?

This issue of Democracy and Society will take a broad, analyticalperspective on the impact of the war on terror. We seek to understand itfrom both a US, global, regional, and country-specific perspective. Pleaseemail submissions to democracyandsociety@gmail.com by October 21, 2011. Foradditional information, please visit www.democracyandsociety.com or contactAndrea Murta or Ayesha Chugh at democracyandsociety@gmail.com.