Political Science

AUG 2007

Political science is a logical study of dominions, sovereignty, authority and administration through the utilization of empirical and general scientific methods of analysis, but most usually does not produce precise forms of measurement or predictions. As it has been studied, defined and redefined traditionally, political science examines the state and its organs, institutions and policies. Contemporarily it is much broader, incorporating findings from public, cultural, and psychological factors that have influence in the operation of government and political practices. Political Science focuses on the abilities of one political actor to influence another actor to act accordingly to their biddings at the local, national, and international levels by using methods and information from other social sciences. Studies in political science focus on the descriptive over the normative in relation to behaviors and institutions, developing theories and conclusions that are conveyed through quantitative terms to support empirical observations.

It could be said that the first writings and the initial development of the field of political science were Plato’s The Republic and Laws, and Aristotle’s The Politics and Nicomachean Ethics, in which the philosophy of political systems were first described and analyzed. However, historical reference to systems of governance and analysis can be traced to the stories and writing given by Homer, Herodotus, Thucydides, and Euripides. Yet, it was not until the Italian Renaissance period that methods based on research into political matters were described by the realist Machiavelli in his The Prince. This treatise introduced the modern theory of realism within the scope of rational choice [1]. During the Enlightenment and for much of the 16th-18th Centuries, philosophers and intellectuals alike, developed theories related to the authority of the commons in regards to natural rights and how political power could or should be disseminated. The roots of liberalism are clinched in the works of John Locke and Thomas Jefferson [1].

Contemporary political science began with the use of ideology to describe the differences in major political movements such as utopian socialism and republican democratization. During the 19th Century political science developed into primary distinctions that allowed the discipline to develop more completely. Through the 19th and 20th Centuries, the discipline developed academically as it was introduced into Western institutions with curriculum to further its depth and to spread its findings. Into the beginning of this Century, political science had developed into a move objective and pluralist discipline that incorporates many facets of academia and global information to support massive theories that provide explanations for the actions of state and non-state actors throughout the world.

The Cold War led Contemporary Political Science to begin purer ways of analyzing government systems due to the build up of reformist views that had previously occluded the understandings of politics. Through behaviorism, political science began creating an institutionalized version of the scientific community that excluded those who had not proven themselves credible through extensive and proper training or who had yet to show assimilation to similar beliefs and theories. The behavioral approach and its quantitative analysis approach permeated through many subfields, but did not largely affect the vast majority of the normative political theorists. However, Post Behavioralism expanded much further across the political science discipline as it provided for more concrete and usable methodological approaches. The 21st Century has shown growing disdain for Behaviorism and Post Behavioralism as it may have led the discipline into increased mathematical approaches to determinations and less inclusiveness of other disciplines.

Robert Dahl describes power as a relation among people that is manifested in the ability to influence and control the behavior of people or ‘authorities’ within the international world [2]. In essence, power is in direct relation to political science because it is at the root of what this discipline focuses on. Power is also directly related to the Rational Choice framework and Game Theory with differentiation between the abilities of actors to bring about outcomes and the ability of actors to change structures in order to bring about outcomes. Furthermore, power is a complex concept that has commonly come to be associated with the ability to influence the actions or decisions of another, which is very similar to the definition of political science previously given. Power is divided into soft and hard by political scientists: Soft power relies on the ability to shape the preferences of others and the exponential ability of those who preferences are manipulated to in turn influence the preferences of others also; hard power is essentially the socio-economic and martial ability to force others into submission and accepting of those preferences prescribed to them. In international relations studies, power is interrelated to the theory of Realism because power provides the sense of security that maximizes and consolidates itself.

The discipline of political science thrives on using both quantitative and qualitative methods of analysis. However qualitative research methodology is the more important of the two because it focuses on the quality of information rather than the quantity of information. Moreover, quantitative research provides support and material for qualitative research, although quantitative methodology provides specifics, those specifics have been and ought to be used in the qualitative methodology. Additionally, qualitative research frequently catalogues data into patterns for organizational and reporting formats.

Independent academic communities are essential when countering efforts of officials who shape public knowledge of foreign policy issues. Public officials utilize vast information irregularities in multiple areas of politics, and this information is especially used when dealing with international affairs. Much of what is known about the outside world originates from government sources with public officials often going to great lengths to shape the way information is reported to the public. While public officials collect vast amounts of information about the outside world, they also use secrecy laws to control public access to this information. Public officials often shape public views by leaking information strategically, or by using journalists whose professional success depends in part on maintaining access to key officials. Furthermore, academics that enjoy associating with public officials or powerful private interests could become reluctant to do anything or discuss issues that may jeopardize their insider status.

A quick search of political science programs at universities across the United States shows that there is no particular or exact definition of political science. This suggests that the discipline is broad, but academics have a desire to define political science in their own terms. However, this particular discipline is a science that incorporates many facets of other fields and disciplines, making it rather broad. Therefore it would be safe to say that one broad definition of political science is possible, but individual beliefs of what the discipline should be defined as will not be universally acceptable. The development of political science as a discipline has been slow, but progressive. This is a study that cannot greatly exceed the period of time for which it is in, but rather track it evenly. Political science as a discipline should remain open to multiple theories because there is ever the opportunity to develop new theories and approaches, and the opportunity to disprove others. The discipline is in need of every type of methodology available to it. Using quantitative and qualitative research is much more appropriate than choosing one over the other. Finally, the science of politics is more about research, development, understanding and dissemination of knowledge whereas political action is the use of that research, development and knowledge to further a policy, a way of life, or governance.

[1] Roskin, Michael G. "Early Modern Developments," Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Copyright 2015. Accessed 7 July 2015.

[2] Dahl, Robert A. "The Concept of Power." Frank R. Baumgartner, Department of Political Science, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Originally Published 1957. Accessed 7 July 2015. Pages 201-15.


Palestine Inside Out (Saree Makdisi)

April 2015

The stanza, “Then every man of every clime, that prays in his distress, prays to the human form divine, love mercy pity peace,” from William Blake’s poem The Divine Image leads Saree Makdisi’s book, Palestine Inside Out: An Everyday Occupation,which is a thorough survey of the accounts of everyday lives of people in occupied Palestine and Israel. Makdisi who is an American born to a Lebanese father and Palestinian mother and who was raised in a Christian, has lived in the United States and Lebanon while visiting Palestine throughout his life. He is the nephew of the Palestinian-American literary theorist Edward Said and is himself a professor at UCLA in English and Comparative Literature. It would be further worthwhile to note that Palestine Inside Out is not a critique on the 1948 ethnic cleansing or a textbook on the history of occupation, but rather the exploration of the exposure to the ravages of a concentrated colonial endeavor. Although the media presents a constant perspective of violence in Palestine, suggesting that Israelis are responding to the terrorist of Palestine, this book shows that daily violence effected by the occupation is not asymmetrical, but a shared abuse against the Palestinian people that “because the destruction is routine, it generally takes place out of the view of the global media.” The book plunges into the personal account of Sam Bahour who was ordered from his home and out of the West Bank by the Israeli government. As Makdisi lists stories of personal hardships, it may not be spectacular “since they occur on an individual and intimately personal scale,” but they suggest why Palestine is on the edge of dissolution.

A visualization of Israel as an exclusively Jewish state, aiming to solve the ‘demographic problem’ of Palestine by making their lives insufferable in hopes that Palestinians will leave without physical relocation by the Israelis is a central theme of Makdisi’s book. Furthermore, a consistent subject of the book is of demographics and Israel’s endeavor to rid the land of Palestinians and to preclude their return, which is achieved by using physical force and ethnic, social, and economic exclusion through a “complex series of bureaucratic and administrative hurdles,” “a politically charged vision, having assumed the neutral and technical language of administration procedures and bureaucratic regulations, is played out in government offices, at roadblocks and checkpoints, and in planning applications; housing permits; citizenship, identity and residency documents- and, of course visa stamps.” Saree Makdisi perfectly weaves in historical facts, military orders and operations, and scholarly writings into the fabric of first account recollections of past and current events from both Israelis and Palestinians. In a classical way he interposes these reports with more than six series of qualified statistics, twelve maps, and thirty-three photographs. With a respect for the rights of both Israelis and Palestinians to live in security and peace, Makdisi includes stories from Israeli soldiers that tell multiple points of view on the Occupation and he cites Israeli author David Shulman in saying, “What we are fighting is pure, rarefied…human evil,” adding “What unwitting hatred, has turned Israeli Jews into torturers of the innocent?”

The book looks particularly at the ‘Seam Zone,’ an area between the Green Line and the Wall, and how more than 60,000 Palestinians who now exist in this zone are deprived of access to their individual land and emergency medical care.The magnitude of destruction is exemplified by fatalities when Israeli soldiers refuse to grant access to the aforementioned medical care without relevant permits. Makdisi also describes why the Oslo agreements played a dynamic role in the ‘hyper regulation’ because it institutionalized the checkpoints, curfews, roadblocks that have “led to ever-greater immobilization and paralysis, political infighting, soaring unemployment, and economic collapse.”The book considers the intimate impact of the bureaucratic controls that command, “who one is, where one can go, where one can live and work,” as proven through the destruction of homes, the division of families without the correct permits and without family unification papers.

Throughout the book, Makdisi tries to give vivid indications of how the blunt facts of Israeli occupation with vast concrete walls around West Bank communities and Gaza cause “A Palestinian archipelago surrounded by an Israeli Sea [with Gaza being the largest island],” and institutionalizes the loss of control over every aspect of life for Palestinians through the isolation of neighborhoods, livelihoods and each other. Makdisi uses quotes and writings to illustrate the failures of the “peace process” such as when Henry Siegman (former head of the American Jewish Congress) stated, “The Middle East peace process may well be the most spectacular deception in modern diplomatic history.”Of the more atrocious accounts of suffering drawn from publications of Shovrim Shtika (an Israeli veterans’ organization), personal encounters, and documents from human rights organizations, the stories regarding the unnecessary steps the Israeli Defensive Forces take [and have taken] to prevent medical treatment to Palestinians and the description of retaliation inflicted on Nablus during “Operation Defensive Shield,” cause great uneasiness to any unbiased reader and at times give a sense of hopelessness. Makdisi remarks on the extended Peace Process as being “a fiction that has served primarily to provide cover for its systematic confiscation of Palestinian land,” which resulted as “the Israeli occupation [has] slowly and methodically accomplished precisely what it set out to do forty-one years ago,” leaving the “whole package [of Palestine]…removed from [the American] agenda indefinitely.”

The daily nuances of being in the occupation are massive as given in the subjective stories and in the summary of facts in each section of this book, and "the double process of [Israeli] settlement and Palestinian [segmentation], is played out on an intimately small scale, and on a daily basis throughout the West Bank," while Gaza "is a controlled strangulation that apparently falls within the generous limits of international toleration," an acceptance by an accommodating media that does not put it all into the context of an occupation or a violation in international law. Hezbollah and Hamas enter the dialogue powerfully in the books final section with assistance from the media, both groups are branded as terrorist groups [out of context] that use extreme suicide bombing terrorists to devastate innocent civilians, without bearing in mind context of the "aerial and artillery bombings, cluster bombs, depleted uranium, phosphorous and napalm" as well as experimental weapons including the "dense inert metal explosive" by Israel that are equivalently as indiscriminate but incredibly more powerful and devastating. The Israeli weapons are used around a considerably broader portion of the Palestinian population without real apprehension for civilian casualties.

Saree Makdisi provides the groundwork for the reader to preempt his purpose of demonstrating that the “peace process” has to this point allowed Israel to create “a geophysical impossibility” to the option of a two-state solution, which any study of the U.N. Partition Plan practically obliterated from the onset. It is suggested by Makdisi that a single state proposed by Adalah (the Legal Center for Minority Rights in Israel) in 2007 should be “a draft constitution for one [democratic and secular] state…a bilingual and multicultural state…in all of [historic] Palestine,” that it would be one, “in which Jews and Palestinian[s] could live together as equal citizens.”

This uniquely inspiring masterpiece, Palestine Inside Out: An Everyday Occupation, lends the reader the heart of the author as he conveys a growing bond with his Palestinian roots as the around three hundred pages progress. Nevertheless Makdisi suggests that there is room for hope as the battle for equality within a single state is a more popular and eventually more likely struggle to succeed, that “Palestinians have to realize that they will never recuperate Palestine as it was before the arrival of Zionism, and Israelis will never realize a purely Jewish state- they must both put their two impossible ideals aside for the sake of a common future.” Saree Makdisi confidently places the reader on ground in the West Bank and Gaza in a “no-holds-barred” way. He supports his book with pages of citations and indices to provide even the staunchest of critics’ sources to reflect on. It was my experience that this is a book that is so rousing and heartbreaking that it was nearly impossible to put down except to take deep breaths after reading some of the most unpleasant stories in history. I hope that Professor Makdisi’s book is widely read and used in furthering the understanding of the Occupation of Palestine.

Why Nonprofits Fail (Block)

Oct 2016

I believe that the following order appropriately ranks the Seven Tough Problems from most critical to least critical: Role Confusion, Financial Misfortune, Founder’s Syndrome, Recruitment Disorientation, Fundphobia, Political Performance, and Cultural Depression in Nonprofit Organizations.

Role Confusion is when ambiguous roles and responsibilities of managers and board In Why Nonprofits Fail, Block provides essential information about forming a nonprofit corporation. Good intentions will quickly get drowned unless a lot of thought and advance planning guides your nonprofit organization from idea inception into founding and daily operations. The nonprofit world is restrained by frugality and this is especially true for the startup nonprofit organization. It must work to establish itself as both an effective and viable resource in communities which might have already established nonprofit organizations performing identical functions. Starting and then successfully running a nonprofit organization requires work. In addition to organization structure, founder psychology is an essential component to nonprofit organization viability. Boosting your organization certainly is essential to building its reputation, but cannot be done at the expense of long-term planning and idea sharing. Furthermore, a founder considering the organization "theirs" consequently will have a difficult time conceding when those ideas are ineffective or even detrimental to organizational affectivity.

However well-intentioned, some founders do not know when to ask for help or when the organization really needs it. This stalling consequently jeopardizes organization efficacy and longevity. Unable to fulfill original intentions, the organization subsequently folds while conversely the problem it was supposed to address remains. Early critical missteps ultimately give non-profit start-ups a very short future.

Members interfere with the efficient operation of the organization. It occurs in a situation where an individual has trouble determining which role he or she should play, but where the roles are not necessarily incompatible. With it, often board members will involve themselves in aspects of the organization that it is not appropriate for them to be a part and likewise, a manager may seek out those who are not the appropriate choice for other aspects.

Financial Misfortune describes a nonprofit organization’s financial health problem that escalates when board members and staff avoid their financial management responsibilities. The organization’s finances are similar to the blood of a body, although it may not be the only part that keeps the organization going, without a strong and steady financial situation the organization will slow and falter. Founder’s syndrome is when one or more founders maintain disproportionate power and influence following the effective initial establishment of the project, leading to a wide range of problems for both the organization and those involved in it. The passion and charisma of the founder or founders, which was such an important reason for the successful establishment of the organization, becomes a limiting and destructive force, rather than the creative and productive one it was in the early stages. It may simply limit the further growth and success of the project, may lead to bitter factionalism and divisions as the scale of demands made on the organization increases, or may result in failure.


Taiwan: The Republic of China

Nov 2014

The states of East Asia have long endured great struggles amongst each other, but none greater than taking on the role of becoming partners on the international stage since the early 1900s. The recognized states of East Asia are easy to list and so are the nations (in the ethnic and/or national identity use) or regions that wish to be recognized as states. Many nations or regions in East Asia that seek autonomy and/or state status are disputed areas of China. Among these states is the very notable government and nation of Taiwan. Lassa Oppenheim once said that it is possible that the meaning of sovereignty is the most controversial conception and that to this day there has never been a meaning of sovereignty that is universally accepted.[1] To better understand the issues, what makes Taiwan a sovereign state and why the international community does not recognize it as such must be discussed and answered.

At the end of World War II, the Chinese mainland returned to civil war with the People’s Republic of China (PRC), a communist government, rebelled against the Republic of China (ROC) who controlled de facto the government assets of Mainland China and who were a nationalist government. At the time the island of Taiwan was under Japanese rule and had been since the First Sino-Japanese War. Less than two months after the surrender of the Empire of Japan to the United States in 1945, the ROC took control of the governance of Taiwan and its nearby islands as part of China. However, as the PRC continued to become more successful and victorious in battle, the ROC was forced to abandoned Mainland China and reestablished the government of China from Taipei in 1949 while the PRC established rule over the mainland.[2] Taiwan was formerly returned to China (the ROC de jure and de facto in Taipei) in 1952 from Japan as part of the Treaty of Taipei that formally ended the Second Sino-Japanese War (a prelude to and part of World War II) between Japan and the Republic of China (and effectively with the PRC who controlled de facto Mainland China).[3] Although only effectively having actual governance over Taiwan and its surrounding islands and not de facto governance over the whole of China, the ROC was officially recognized as a founding member of the United Nations and held a seat on the Security Council with veto powers as the government of all of China until 1971 when the PRC assumed China’s recognized seat in the United Nations which effectively reduced the recognition of the ROC as a state by other states to only 21 member states of the United Nations that maintained official diplomatic relations with the ROC.[4]

Constitutive Theory suggests that states exist outside of external recognition; however, it is through recognition that a state becomes a subject of International Law and a participant in the world community.[5] In contrast, according to Declarative Theory a state is defined as having a permanent population within a defined territory, having economic activity and an organized economy that is regulated by the government on issues of trade and currency and provides a transportation network, having the power to provide social engineering and public services and police services, having sovereignty from other states with external recognition.[6] From the theory and school of Realism, it is believed that a state is defined prior to and outside of international relations; in opposition of that is a Pluralists belief that without being predicated on international interactions, a state does not exist.[7]

Taiwan tends to go by three different names; it is commonly known and referred to as Taiwan, but officially it is the Republic of China, however, it goes by Chinese Taipei when involved in international organizations (due to political pressure on other states by the PRC).[8] The ROC claims that it is a de facto and de jure sovereign state over Taiwan and its surrounding islands, and that it is de jure sovereign over the whole of China; whereas in fact although the PRC claims sovereignty over Taiwan, the ROC has maintained rule of law since the 1940s over Taiwan and in fact the PRC has maintained the rule of law over the remainder of China. Up until the 1990s both the Netherlands and France sold military weapons and other hardware to the ROC.[9] Taiwan maintains official diplomatic relations as a sovereign state as the ROC with the Holy See and 21 other member states of the United Nations and unofficial de facto consulates in nearly all other states of the international community for the purpose of maintain diplomatic relations and consular services.[10] The Taiwan Relations Act provides that United States recognizes separate governing authorities of Taiwan from the PRC and establishes the mutual defense of Taiwan along with outlining trade and laying the groundwork for de facto American consulates in Taiwan;[11] the United States also recognizes and allows Visas to Taiwanese passport holders.[12] Since the formation of the Russian Federation, it has maintained a representative office in Taipei.[13] The European Union exempts Taiwanese passport holders from having an Schengen visa while visiting the Schengen,[14] and 16 member states of the European Union have established diplomatic offices in Taipei.[15]

In area, Taiwan is larger than 50 other recognized states and is the 137th largest country, making it larger than Belgium, Israel and Lebanon amongst others and has a population larger than 140 recognized states making it the 54th largest population in the world (including being larger than Luxembourg, Ireland, Norway, Denmark, and Finland combined),[16] and has a population that is predominately of Han Chinese ancestry (established form more than a century).[17] The International Monetary Fund gives Taiwan a nominal rank GDG of 27th in the world[18] and purchasing power rank GDP of 21st in the world putting the ROC above Hong Kong, the UAE, Israel, Belgium, Sweden and Norway amongst others.[19] Furthermore, the ROC holds the world’s fifth largest amount of foreign reserves and manages its own currency (New Taiwan Dollar),[20] and by 2008 the Taiwanese companies had invested $150 billion USD within the PRC.[21] Taiwan is known as one of the four “Asian Tigers” and it has become a major foreign investor in Thailand, Indonesia, the PRC and Philippines, Malaysia and Vietnam, with 50,000 Taiwanese businesses expanded into the PRC.[22]

The ROC maintains a modernized military with offensive and defensive capabilities with defense expenditures at approximately $10.76 billion USD.[23] Since the 1950s the United States has traded and sold military and defensive products (including warships) and technology to Taiwan under the Sino-American Mutual Defense Treaty and currently under the Taiwan Relations Act via the American Institute in Taiwan;[24]and Taiwan has not been occupied by or governed by any other state than the ROC since the 1940s, and has not been invaded. Currently, the literacy rate in Taiwan (defined as those over the age of 15 who can read and write) is 98.2%, and the ROC manages a universal health insurance program as a social service.[25] Furthermore, according to Freedom in the World 2014 the ROC is free and the PRC is not free, the 2014 Index of Economic Freedom ranks the ROC as mostly free and the PRC as mostly un-free, and the 2014 Press Freedom Index lists the ROC in a satisfactory situation and the PRC in a very serious situation;[26] Taiwan is ranked as a medium risk in the Human Rights Risk Index of 2014[27] and is ranked 23rd on the Human Development Index (Very High Human Development).[28]

Taiwan is active in the international community participating under all three of its names. Due to the lack of formal international recognition, the ROC is a member of the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization under the name of “Taiwan”.[29] The ROC is recognized as “China” in the World Organization of the Scout Movement, but it is listed as “Chinese Taipei” in the Olympic Games.[30] However, due to the PRC’s One China policy, Taiwan has been consistently blocked from World Health Organization membership since 1997.[31] The PRC refuses to have diplomatic relations with any nation that recognizes the ROC as a sovereign state, and requires all nations with which the PRC has diplomatic relations to make a statement recognizing its claims that Taiwan is a part of China and the PRC.[32] Additionally, the PRC passed and publicly announced the anti-secession law that states the PRC will take military actions against the ROC if Taiwan declared independence formally or if it was officially recognized as a state by the international community, and that there would be economic and possible military impacts on any nation that recognizes Taiwan officially.[33] As a member of the UN Security Council (controlling the ROCs former seat), the PRC exercises its veto power to block as much recognition of the ROC and its involvement in the international community as possible.

In a world of Realist, Taiwan is a state because it is governed independently from any other sovereign state and maintains rule of law de facto and de jure (when the length of time that Taiwan has operated independently is considered). It could be suggested that Taiwan is a sovereign state according to Constitutive Theory due to a combination of the Realist belief and the official recognition Taiwan receives from 10% of the member states of the United Nations in addition to the incredible non-official recognition from a majority of the world’s nations. To the latter point of international recognition coupled with the immense amount of international trade and involvement in worldwide organizations that Taiwan participates in, it could be concluded that a Pluralist view would suggest that Taiwan is a sovereign state. As for the Declarative Theory on the meaning of a sovereign state, the Republic of China as Taiwan meets all the criteria outside of no other state claiming sovereignty over it and the lack of official recognition from a majority of the international community. These schools of thoughts and theories give prudence to the claim of the ROC that Taiwan is a sovereign state. The power of the PRC to essentially block all effort on the part of Taiwan to join the international community answers why certain international communities do not recognize the Taiwan as a state, but the PRC goes further and threatens economic fallout and possible military consequences to any state that dares to recognize the ROC as the sovereign government of the state of Taiwan. Until Mainland China, the PRC, is held off and put into check, it is highly unlikely that Taiwan will receive official international recognition as a state or sovereign over itself.

[1] Lassa Oppenheim, International Law 66 (Sir Arnold D. McNair ed., 4th ed. 1928)

[2] “A brief history of Taiwan”. Government Information Office, Republic of China.

[3] “Treaty of Peace between the Republic of China and Japan”. Taipei: Academia Historica Digital Archives Program. 1952.

[4] “The Birth of the Republic of China”. Government Information Office, ROC. <www.gio.gov.tw>

[5] Lassa Oppenheim, Ronald Roxburgh (2005). International Law: A Treatise. The Lawbook Exchange, Ltd. p. 135.

[6] “Convention on Rights and Duties of States adopted by the Seventh International Conference of American States”. United Nations Treaty Series.

[7] Bryan Turner (July 2007). “Islam, Religious Revival and the Sovereign State”. Muslim World 97 (3): 405-418.

[8] Katie Reid (18 May 2009). “Taiwan hopes WHO assembly will help boost its profile”. Reuters.

[9] “Taiwan trying to shore up weapons support”. USA Today. 24 September 2004.

[10] Pobzeb Vang (2008). Five Principles of Chinese Foreign Policies. AuthorHouse. p. 46.

[11] Taiwan Relations Act: Public Law 96-8 96th Congress Sec. 4 under APPLICATION OF LAWS; INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS.

[12] “American Institute in Taiwan – Visa Waiver Program”. <ait.org.tw>.

[13] “Representative office in Taipei for the Moscow-Taipei Coordination Commission on Economic and Cultural Cooperation v.2.0”. <mtc.org.tw>.

[14] “MEPs back visa waiver for Taiwan”. <europarl.europa.eu>

[15] “European Union – EEAS (European External Action Service) EU Presence in Taiwan”. <eeas.europa.eu>. 29 May 2012.

[16] “Number of Villages, Neighborhoods, Households and Resident Population”. MOI Statistical Information Service.

[17] “The Republic of China Yearbook 2009/Chapter 2: People and Language”. <gio.gov.tw>.

[18] “Report for Selected Countries and Subjects”. World Economic Outlook.International Monetary Fund. October 2014.

[19] “Report for Selected Countries and Subjects (PPP valuation of country GDP)”. IMF. October 2014.

[20] “Reserves of foreign exchange and gold”. World Fact Book. CIA. Archived from original on 26 September 2008.

[21] Phil Harding (23 January 2010). “Taiwan’s Grand Hotel welcome for Chinese visitors”. BBC News.

[22] Peter Morris (4 February 2004). “Taiwan business in China supports opposition”. Asia Times Online.

[23] “Taiwan Yearbook 2005”. Government Information Office, Republic of China.

[24] [a] Appendix 17 – Report on Mutual Defense Treaty with the Republic of China, U.S. Senate, Committee on Foreign Relations (1955). [b] American Institute in Taiwan – Taiwan Relations Act.

[25] “Bureau of National Health Insurance-National Health Insurance Act”. Taiwan BNHI (Bureau of National Health Insurance, ROC. 2006.

[26] [a] Freedom in the World 2014, Freedom House, 24 January 2014. [b] “Country Rankings”, 2014 Index of Economic Freedom, Wall Street Journal and Heritage Foundation, January 2014. [c] “Press Freedom Index 2014”, Reporters Without Borders, 11 May 2014.

[27] Maplecroft. December 2013. “World: Human Rights Risk Index 2014.” ReliefWeb. United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. <reliefweb.int/map/world/world-human-rights-risk-index-2014>.

[28] “Human Development Report 2014 – “Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience”. HDRO (Human Development Report Office) United Nations Development Programme. 2014.

[29] [a] “Taiwan”. Unrecognized Nations and Peoples Organization. 2009. [b] “About TFD”. Taiwan Fund for Democracy.

[30] “Taiwan insists on ‘Chinese Taipei’”. China Post. 25 July 2008.

[31] “JOHN TKACIK ON TAIWAN: Taiwan’s ‘undetermined’ status”. Taipei Times.13 May 2009.

[32] Jean-Marie Henckaerts (1996). The international status of Taiwan in the new world order. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. pp. 96-97.

[33] Jane Macartney (6 March 2007). “War of words after call for independence”. The Times (London).

Rwandan Genocide

June 2015

Historical Background: Rwanda is a geographically small state in central sub-Saharan Africa that was predominantly ruled by the minority caste of Tutsi through monarchy. This monarchy was kept in place through both German and Belgian colonial periods from the 1880s through the mid to late 1900s. In the last half of the 20th Century the Belgians supported a demographic democracy that would form from the Rwandan Revolution into a parliamentary system with the majority caste (Hutu) holding vast amounts of government offices. Once Rwanda gained independence, the Hutu-led government quickly began imposing laws and practices to further disenfranchise the Tutsi caste. In 1990 the country fell into civil war between the Tutsi-led Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and the Hutu-led Rwandan government. In 1990 the Hutu-led Rwandan Armed Forces (FAR) began arming Hutu civilians to repel the RPF and through 1992 the FAR and Hutu militias would massacre several groups of up to 300 persons at a time (CIA, At A Glance). In 1993 the United Nations Security Council approved peacekeeping troops in the UN Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR) to provide support in upholding the peace (Arusha) accords between the RPF and Rwandan government, which allowed the RPF to establish a base of operations within the Capital.

Genocide: In October 1993 the Burundi President (Hutu) was assassinated by Tutsi forces, and on 6 April 1994 the plane carrying the Rwandan and Burundi Presidents (both Hutu) was shot down by FAR, leading to the coup of the Rwandan government by hardline Hutu military leaders who implemented the final solution to the Tutsi problem (AYF, par. 2). Within days moderate-Hutu leaders were assassinated along with Belgian and Tutsi members of UNAMIR. Before the end of May, more than 800,000 Rwandans had been murdered by the Hutu forces of civilians, militias and FAR (a rate five-times higher than the rate of killing by the Nazi party in Germany during the Holocaust)(AYF, par. 3). By 18 July 1994, the RPF had captured all of Rwanda except the southwest portion that was being held by French troops in Operation Turquoise, ending the Hutu-executed genocide of the Tutsi population. Throughout the approximately 100 days, Hutu government officials aired messages promoting the massacre of Tutsi and released HIV/AIDS patients from hospitals so that they could rape Tutsi women in the attempt to spread the disease amongst the Tutsi caste (AYF, par. 2). Rape and sexual mutilations were a primary tool and weapon used to attack and demoralize Tutsi communities prior to the massacres that immediately followed. Organizations such as the RPF and the current Rwandan government estimate over 1 million Rwandans murdered in this short period with 90% being Tutsi, but there is discrepancy in the estimates as members of the international community often quote much lower numbers. It is thought that the final solution was determined and planned between 1990 and 1992 (AYF, par. 7).

International Affairs: Even though the UNAMIR had reported to the United Nations that Hutu militias had been armed and ordered to kill Belgians participating in UNAMIR and that the Hutu-led Rwandan government had developed plans to facilitate the genocide of the Tutsi caste prior to the start of the genocide, the UNAMIR was forced to stay within their limited rules of engagement that only included self-defense of UNAMIR troops in certain circumstances. In late April 1994 amidst allegations that leaders of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations were pro-Hutu and with the decision of Belgium to withdraw from the UNAMIR, the United States and United Kingdom advocated to withdraw all peacekeepers. However, by mid-May the Security Council recognized that some acts of genocide might be occurring and that more peacekeeping forces would be needed. However, in the previous month, the UN began providing refugee camps in neighboring countries for the Hutu population (many of whom participated in the genocide) that had fled from the RPF troops as they took regions of Rwanda and forced an end to the genocide in captured lands.

The United States took a well-noticed non-combative approach, and although the U.S. had previously supported the RPF, the United States primarily focused on evacuating Americans and embassy personnel from Rwanda along with 1,000 other European troops with the same objective. In the midst of the Belgian UNAMIR forces withdrawing from Rwanda, these UNAMIR peacekeepers allowed the FAR and Hutu militias to capture their base in Kigali and massacre thousands of Tutsi who had sought refuge with the UNAMIR.

France since the beginning of the Rwandan Civil War had actively assisted the Hutu-regime in fighting the RPF in hopes to prevent Anglo-influences in the region. This assistance ranged from French troops participating in combat against the RPF and training of Hutu troops in techniques that they would ultimately use for the genocide. At the outbreak of the genocide both French and Belgian troops refused to provide refuge to the Tutsi population and would actively hand-over Tutsi to Hutu militia and gangs. In the first weeks of the genocide, French troops used UNAMIR equipment to evacuate high-ranking Hutu officials from the Capital and ensured that any documents at the French Embassy that could tie France to the genocide were destroyed. In June 1994 France obtained a mandate from the United Nations to invade Rwanda in order to establish a “safe zone” in the southwest part of the country (Operation Turquoise). However French forces used this as an opportunity to supply Hutu forces with equipment flying French and UN flags in order to flush out remaining Tutsi that they might be murdered by Hutu forces, and then the refugee camps established in the safe zone were primarily operated and reserved for the Hutu participants of the genocide to help shield them from retribution by the remaining Tutsi population. European and Rwandan officials, as recent as 2014, have made claims that France took a direct role in the preparation and participation of the genocide of the Tutsi caste.

The aftermath of the Rwandan Civil War and Genocide led to more UN Peacekeeping troops in Rwanda and refugee camps in neighboring countries that aided in the destabilization of the region. Tutsi forces, in fear that the Hutu caste would try to retake Rwanda, invaded neighboring countries, massacring masses of Hutus in refugee camps. These three forces weighed heavily on the outbreak of the Congolese Wars that left all of central Africa war-torn from the remainder of the 1990s. However, in correlation with the genocide in Rwanda, the International Criminal Court eventually was established to prosecute war crimes and acts of genocide.

Realism: The situations leading to the genocide in Rwanda were ultimately caused by individual states (Germany, Belgium, France, and Rwanda) acting on their own interests to continue subordination or assimilation to the interests of those countries. In the midst of the Civil War when both parties agreed to have UN Peacekeepers in Rwanda, it was not in the interests of the vast majority of states who saw the issues and indeed the following genocide has a matter of domestic issue. For states such as the United Kingdom and the United States there were no practical interests or benefits from becoming involved in this issue. The Civil War and genocide were just another set of conflicts in nature of Realism with an assumed relatively small power change in the world. Acting on the assumptions of anarchy, the international community (especially the UNAMIR) represented the lack of ability to organize in a security dilemma due to the “self-help” attitudes of multiple states. Therefore suggesting that any intervention by the international community was doomed to fail without proper incentive of the largest international players to be involved. Furthermore suggesting that calculations were made to interfere based on the economic, material, and strategic value (or lack thereof) of the region to polar powers and the hegemon.

Liberalism: The genocide in Rwanda has led to an increase global liberalism. Actions by states since this incident have taken into account more often the relevance of domestic-level affairs such as how the United States actively participated in providing goods and services to the fledgling democracies established in Afghanistan and Iraq after U.S. invasions. This incident also increased the participation of international organizations in humanitarian efforts such as the change in NATO policies to reorganize and update their situational awareness and the creation of the International Criminal Court. However, the issues of other states and international organizations providing services such as refugee camps has led to greater involvement and questions of abuses of the assistance.

Social Construction: During the course of the Rwandan Civil War and the days of genocide, the populations of Rwandan Hutus were trained by their government to hate Tutsi Rwandans. Propaganda campaigns were developed by the Hutu-led government to construct a perception that Tutsi civilians were the roots of the evil plague of the RPF rebellion and were the ultimate cause of all the strife (historically and presently) of the Hutu population. So effective were these campaigns that when the genocide started, many Hutu civilians took up arms to murder their neighbors, friends, family members, and co-workers in a socially constructed group consciousness.

Neo-Conservatism: The Rwandan Genocide could be evaluated in a way to suggest that the Hutu-led government was not democratic in nature and therefore wasn’t a good government, and that although the international community attempted to interfere, the use of the United Nations proved to be worthless and therefore shouldn’t have been used. However, in the hopes to prevent any possible threat to democracy in the future, the hegemon is responsible to have eliminated the Hutu-led government and establish a pro-American government.

Feminism: It could be said that one of the most tragic disasters that arose from the Rwandan Genocide was the treatment of women. On 6 April 1994, the Hutu-led armed forces seized the Rwandan government from the female prime minister who was by law the person to take control of the government at the loss of the President. However, she was assassinated by the FAR to prevent her moderate policies from being implemented. In the following weeks of the genocide, Hutu men would rape and mutilate Tutsi and Hutu women, purposely infecting them with diseases such as HIV/AIDS so that their lives (if they survived) would be destroyed, rarely were men affected by these specific actions. The feminist point of view would establish that the patriarchal nature of Rwandan politics did not permit more moderate actions to be taken that had been advocated by many women, and that because women worldwide do not have an equal standing with men in policy making decisions, that the torture of the women of Rwanda were not a concern of any group, be they state or international organization. This view would suggest that women were at a higher disadvantage than men in the genocide as even those who survived would likely find it hard to gain respect or reproduce after being raped and infected.

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Office of Public Affairs. "Rwanda Country Profile." The World Factbook. June 2015. Accessed June 2015.

Armenian Youth Federation - Western United States (AYF). "Genocide in Rwanda." The United Human Rights Council. Accessed June 2015.

BBC NEWS (BBC). “Rwanda: How the Genocide Happened.” World, Africa. May 2011. Accessed June 2015.

Information on UN and U.S. involvement: Adams, Simon. "The UN, Rwanda and the 'Genocide Fax' -- 20 Years Later." The Huffington Post. March 2014. Accessed June 2015.

Information on French and Belgian involvement: Patrick, Stewart. "Lessons of the Rwandan Genocide." Council on Foreign Relations. April 2014. Accessed June 2015.

Information on Realism, Liberalism, Social Construction, Neo-Conservatism, and Feminism are based on the knowledge obtained in class during presentation of information and discussion.