Review: Deliver Us from Evil: Peacekeepers, Warlords and a World of Endless Conflict

5 Star, Empire, Sorrows, Hubris, Blowback, Humanitarian Assistance, Military & Pentagon Power, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Stabilization & Reconstruction, Threats (Emerging & Perennial)
Amazon Page
Amazon Page
5.0 out of 5 stars Fundamental Primer on Real-World Security Challenges
August 29, 2000
EDIT of 23 Feb 08 to add links. This remains a priceless reference work.This book is serious, scholarly yet down to earth, compassionate, insightful, terribly relevant and most useful to any citizen, overseas practitioner, or policymaker. By the books own rendering, “good will without strength can make things worse.” Most compellingly, the author demonstrates both the nuances and the complexities of “peace operations”, and the fact that they require at least as much forethought, commitment, and sustainment as combat operations. Food scarcity and dangerous public health are the root symptoms, not the core issues.

The most dangerous element is not the competing sides, but the criminal gangs that emerge to “stoke the fires of nationalism and ethnicity in order to create an environment of fear and vulnerability” (and great profit). At the same time, humanitarianism has become a big part of the problem-we have not yet learned how to distinguish between those conflicts where intervention is warranted (e.g. massive genocide campaigns) and those where internal conflicts need to be settled internally.

In feeding the competing parties, we are both prolonging the conflict, and giving rise to criminal organizations that learn to leverage both the on-going conflict and the incoming relief supplies. Perhaps more troubling, there appears to be a clear double-standard-whether deliberate or circumstantial-between attempts to bring order to the white western or Arab fringe countries and what appears to be callous indifference to black African and distant Asian turmoil that includes hundreds of thousands victim to genocide and tens of thousands victim to living amputation, mutilation, and rape.

When all is said and done, and these are my conclusions from reading this excellent work,

1) there is no international intelligence system in place suitable to providing both the global coverage and public education needed to mobilize and sustain multi-national peacekeeping coalitions;

2) the United Nations is not structured, funded, nor capable of carrying out disciplined effective peacekeeping operations, and the contributing nations are unreliable in how and when they will provide incremental assistance;

3) we still have a long way to go in devising new concepts, doctrines, and technologies and programs for effectively integrating and applying preventive diplomacy, transformed defense, transnational law enforcement, and public services (water, food, health and education) in a manner that furthers regionally-based peace and prosperity instead of feeding the fires of local unrest.

See also:
The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It
The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time
The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits (Wharton School Publishing Paperbacks)
The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism
Confessions of an Economic Hit Man
Manufacture of Evil: Ethics, Evolution, and the Industrial System
Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization, Third Edition
The Future of Life
The leadership of civilization building: Administrative and civilization theory, symbolic dialogue, and citizen skills for the 21st century

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