Don't have an account? While the reforms of the immediate post-Vietnam years meant that Army reoriented itself towards its conventional mission in Europe and effectively erased counterinsurgency from its institutional memory, it did not follow that policy-makers would remain convinced of the limits of US power for long. There was a new debate on counterinsurgency and dissent on what the lessons of Vietnam should be, but the results of that debate led back to the same consensus that the Army had at the start of the decade.
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Special Operations/Low-Intensity Conflict
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Rape is both common and horrible but is not, I suspect, the defining experience for most Darfurian women. Rather, in line with the ethnography of the Burundian war, the conflict is experienced chiefly as traumatic disruption and insecurity, in the broadest sense that includes lack of a dignified livelihood and social changes that generally increase uncertainties and undermine status. Second, the political repercussions of the unresolved conflict are very high, not only for Darfur but for Sudan and neighbouring countries.
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This analysis has far-reaching implications for the kind of strategy that is needed to protect civilians, improve the humanitarian situation, and promote a political settlement. The kind of peace support mission needed for a situation of high-intensity conflict, defined by mass killing and destruction, is very different from one of reduced lethal violence, but protracted traumatic disruption to ways of life with particular stresses and vulnerabilities for women.
An Indian Assessment Low Intensity Conflicts & High Intensity Crime
The civilian police also play a very important role in managing the day-to-day threats to the people. Meanwhile, it is the Civil Affairs Department that takes the lead in engaging with the community leaders and local authorities to try to manage the local conflicts which comprise a large proportion of the burden of armed violence in Darfur. I will follow up on that shortly. As Alex writes an ethnographic approach might be more useful; it shows what the people affected are going through.
But how do we measure those that are affected by violence? Those that have been affected by direct violence are probably fewer; the crisis in food security and livelihoods also caused people to be affected according to the UN definition.
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Are those born in IDP camps the last few years the victims of violence? If we look at the psychological effects on children of concentration camp survivors of that conflict we can think of the effects on the children born out of rape and their lives in Darfur. I would like to offer two demographic perspectives as well. When mortality is compared between conflicts absolute numbers are only moderately useful but relative rates are less looked at. What percentage of men between in Darfur have died as a result of violence?
The duration and end of a conflict is also important in the effect it has on a population. A short intense war say Kuwait in with clear resolution is very different to a long drawn-out one without one. As long as there are so many UNAMID troops in Darfur deemed necessary violent conflict and future outbreaks of high intensity violence are a distinct possibility. So, the concept of low-intensity conflict has little meaning for the past and for the future, and just a little for the immediate present.
Therefore it is important to discuss what it means so it does not gets misused to argue for or against the political action that is necessary to move forward.
War in the sense of violent conflict is only one possible manifestation of political struggle. At present, the primary theater in which the struggle in Darfur is being pursued, by both state and insurgents, is a political realm that focuses on the IDP camps and U. The battlefield is ancillary to that. In most parts of Darfur there is a de facto ceasefire in effect and most violence is criminal in nature, not political. This may change at any moment, for example if JEM responds to its marginalization in the peace process with a military attack, that would be intended to ensure its return to a central role in a peace process, or if there is a political realignment in Chad.
Army-Air Force Center for Low Intensity Conflict (U.S.)
Although UNAMID was designed to cope with an entirely different set of circumstances, it is to its credit that it has analyzed the dimensions of the conflict correctly. Despite this, as currently constituted, the international engagement is not capable of understanding these political factors, let alone addressing them.
As a result, the UN including the P3 are reluctant to admit the low level of armed violence, for fear that this would lead to a diminution of political commitment and financial backing for UNAMID. Lacking the political-economic analysis that would allow for a correct definition of the character of the Darfur conflict, they are simply clinging to a set of mechanical measures of conflict and crisis which are less and less appropriate.
The paradoxical outcome of this is that the political positions taken by the international actors are more entrenched and less flexible than those of the Sudanese parties. As I have emphasized many times, the international engagement is increasingly retrogressive. This is not because I support the NCP regime to the contrary but because the only forces capable of enacting political change in Sudan are domestic ones, and as long as any potentially progressive domestic forces are ensared by these international actors, they are doomed to impotence.
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Elections Map. Is Darfur a Low-Intensity Conflict? By Alex de Waal. Related articles More from author. Will be a year of transformation for African women? By African Arguments. Indebted to the Save Darfur Coalition?