A New Approach to Recovering U.S. Servicemen’s Remains from North Korea

A New Approach to Recovering U.S. Servicemen’s Remains from North Korea

Monday, February 12, 2024

By: Donna Knox

Seventy years after the end of the Korean War, there are still more than 7,000 U.S. servicemen who remain missing in action from that conflict. The remains of some 5,200 of these men are believed to be in North Korea. Unfortunately, poor diplomatic relations between the United States and North Korea have prevented the recovery of these remains. There is, therefore, a need for an alternative to the usual paradigm for conceiving, planning and implementing the recovery of U.S. war dead from North Korea. Usual practices might not carry the task, and ignoring the responsibility to bring our missing servicemen home should not be an option.

Type: Analysis

Global Policy

Incorporating Citizen Preferences into the Design of Effective Peace Settlements

Incorporating Citizen Preferences into the Design of Effective Peace Settlements

Friday, February 9, 2024

By: Edward Morgan- Jones;  Feargal Cochrane;  Laura Sudulich;  Charis Psaltis;  Raluca Popp;  Neophytos Loizides

This paper describes the use of conjoint survey experiments to identify citizen preferences with respect to a possible peace agreement in Cyprus and a border agreement in Northern Ireland. The recommendations offered in the conclusion emphasize the flexibility of the method and its transferability to other conflict settings. Results also suggest ways of reinvigorating stalled peace negotiations (Cyprus) or improving past deals (Good Friday Agreement/Brexit-Northern Ireland) and can help contending groups and mediators identify potential zones of agreement by revealing areas where contending groups’ preferences overlap or differ and where possible trade-offs exist that could lead to greater consensus.

Type: Discussion Paper

Peace Processes

In the Pacific, Corruption and Poor Policing Open a Door to China

In the Pacific, Corruption and Poor Policing Open a Door to China

Thursday, February 8, 2024

By: Gordon Peake, Ph.D.

After the Pacific’s largest island nation, Papua New Guinea, recently suffered deadly rioting that included police, an official last week announced a Chinese offer to help strengthen its police force. That sequence exemplifies a rising challenge for democracy and stability in the Pacific: Many island nations suffer corruption and deficient policing that undermines the rule of law. This gap in responsive governance lets China seek influence through technical assistance drawn from its authoritarian model of policing. In response, democracies must reshape narrow, outdated approaches to security assistance.

Type: Analysis

Democracy & GovernanceJustice, Security & Rule of Law

Suddenly, Senegal Is a New Risk for Democracy in Africa

Suddenly, Senegal Is a New Risk for Democracy in Africa

Thursday, February 8, 2024

By: Ambassador Johnnie Carson;  Joseph Sany, Ph.D.

The sudden actions by Senegal’s president to postpone this month’s presidential election by 10 months threaten to seriously undermine political stability and peace in a nation that has been a resilient democracy in West Africa, where multiple military coups d’état have occurred in recent years. This move poses risks of authoritarianism, violence and economic setbacks for Senegal’s 17 million people, and deeper regional insecurity. Friends of Senegal and democracy, in the United States, Africa and beyond, must unite behind the clear desire of Senegal’s people to maintain peaceful, freely elected democracy under its constitution.

Type: Analysis

Democracy & Governance

El Salvador’s Bukele: From ‘World’s Coolest Dictator’ to ‘Philosopher King’

El Salvador’s Bukele: From ‘World’s Coolest Dictator’ to ‘Philosopher King’

Thursday, February 8, 2024

By: Mark Feierstein;  Keith Mines;  Mary Speck, Ph.D.;  Ricardo Zúniga

El Salvador’s president, Nayib Bukele, celebrated a landslide electoral victory on Feb. 4, far outstripping his nearest competitor. “The opposition was pulverized,” Bukele told jubilant crowds outside the National Palace on election night. In reply to critics who warn that El Salvador is moving toward authoritarianism, he proclaimed, “we are not substituting democracy because El Salvador has never had democracy.” The leader who once called himself the “world’s coolest dictator” now boasts of being his country’s “philosopher king.”

Type: Analysis

Global Elections & ConflictGlobal Policy

Economic Coercion: Diversifying and Derisking from China

Economic Coercion: Diversifying and Derisking from China

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

By: Emily Y. Wu

China has a track record of banning products from Taiwan, including fish, alcohol, fruits and other agricultural goods. In this episode, we examine how China uses trade to try to influence Taiwan and how Taiwan pushes back.

Type: Podcast

The 2021 India-Pakistan Ceasefire: Origins, Prospects, and Lessons Learned

The 2021 India-Pakistan Ceasefire: Origins, Prospects, and Lessons Learned

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

By: Christopher Clary

The February 2021 ceasefire between India and Pakistan along the Line of Control in Kashmir has—despite occasional violations—turned into one of the longest-lasting in the countries’ 75-year shared history. Yet, as Christopher Clary writes, the ceasefire remains vulnerable to shocks from terrorist attacks, changes in leadership, and shifting regional relations. With the ceasefire approaching its third anniversary, Clary’s report examines the factors that have allowed it to succeed, signs that it may be fraying, and steps that can be taken to sustain it.

Type: Special Report

Peace Processes

Keith Mines on Haiti’s Security and Governance Crises

Keith Mines on Haiti’s Security and Governance Crises

Monday, February 5, 2024

By: Keith Mines

Haiti’s slow decline has led the country to the brink of collapse. And while the international community has offered to help, “there’s just a lot of pieces … that haven’t come together yet,” says USIP’s Keith Mines, adding: “It probably will take a stronger lead by the United States” to restore security and governance.

Type: Podcast

Global Policy

How to Reduce Nuclear Risks Between the United States and North Korea

How to Reduce Nuclear Risks Between the United States and North Korea

Monday, February 5, 2024

By: Ankit Panda

Since the collapse of the unprecedented leader-level diplomatic process between the United States and North Korea in 2019, relations between the two sides have been at a standstill. In 2021, as the Biden administration entered office, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un set into motion a wide-ranging plan for the modernization of his nuclear forces. This modernization has helped render his nuclear deterrent more credible while accentuating the risks of nuclear conflict on the Korean Peninsula. It has further cemented North Korea’s lack of intent to relinquish its nuclear weapons, which it views as the essential cornerstone of its national defense strategy.

Type: Analysis

Global Policy

Liberia Shows a Path Toward Democracy in West Africa

Liberia Shows a Path Toward Democracy in West Africa

Thursday, February 1, 2024

By: Matthew Reitman;  Katie Todd

Liberia’s presidential inauguration last week, a peaceful transfer of power between opposed political parties, strengthens its postwar democracy — an achievement that we should highlight as an instructive counterpoint to West Africa’s military coups and other erosions of democracy. While 5 million Liberians confront crises including poverty, corruption and poor infrastructure, their progress in stabilizing from decades of war offers lessons for us all. Liberians’ vital strengths in this peaceful transfer include strong political will, reflected in record voter turnout, and a potent civic history of nonviolent movements for change, buttressed by U.S. support in countering corruption.

Type: Analysis

Democracy & Governance