How to Make a Bad Situation Worse

WASHINGTON/BERLIN (Own report) – An expert at Berlin’s Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) is warning against an expansion of German-European military missions. “The analysis of interventions over the past twenty years” has led to “sobering insights into the limitations” of foreign military operations, according to a current position paper published by the SWP. This even applies to those military operations having the official objective of preventing massacres. In Libya, for example, “the risk of mass violence” is, by all means, “considered to be higher today, than before the intervention” in 2011. The SWP’s expert writes that in the USA “politicians and scholars” are “to a growing extent, agreeing that military interventions are an ineffective and extremely expensive instrument.” In fact, US experts are drawing a devastating conclusion about Washington’s intervention policy. One political scientist, taking the example of Syria, found that a military mission to that country, when seen in light of the experiences of Afghanistan, Iraq or Libya, would “make a bad situation much worse.” Regardless of such warnings, Berlin continues to adamantly pursue its expansion of German-European military missions – for the time being, particularly in Africa.

Sobering Insights

In a new position paper, Lars Brozus, an associate of the EU Foreign Relations Research Group of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), is warning against expanding EU military missions, as Berlin is currently preparing. “The analysis of interventions over the past twenty years” have led to “sobering insights about the limitations” of foreign military operations, writes the SWP’s expert.[1] Even a cursory glance at the desolate situation in Kosovo, in Afghanistan, in Iraq and in other regions targeted for Western military operations give confirmation of this.

Dismal Record

While Berlin and the EU are planning an expansion of their military interventions, a development in the opposite direction is taking place in the discussion in the United States. “Politicians and scholars are, to a growing degree concluding that military interventions are an ineffective and expensive instrument.” In fact, in current US-American political journals, renowned experts have been recently unambiguously critical toward US wars of the past decade. Exemplarily, in a text published at the beginning of the year, the Chicago political scientist, John Mearsheimer, discusses possible interventions in Syria or in Egypt. He arrives at the conclusion that there is not only “no compelling moral grounds” for military measures in either of these countries, but, on the contrary, an intervention “is likely to make a bad situation worse.” “Consider America’s dismal record in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.”[4]

Full article: How to Make a Bad Situation Worse (German Foreign Policy)

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