Monday, February 6, 2012

Police Power, Whether We Like Specific Government Policies Or Not, Is What We Have Granted By Accepting Our Birthright Of Freedom—By Not Moving Away Or Pledging Outright to Overthrow--That Our Government Can Act In Our Interest, Even Against Us.

Article Analysis Assignment

First, read a news story from the newspaper or the Internet.  Answer the following questions regarding your news story: 1) What is the main issue, who are the main actors being discussed;  Then, choose one of the assigned articles you read for this week.  Answer the following questions regarding the assigned article: 1) What are the basics of this article (who, what, when, how, why, etc.);  2) What is the overall main point the author is trying to convince you of?  3) Do you agree with the author’s argument?  Why?  Why not?   Finally, tie together your news story with what you learned from the assigned article, textbook readings, podcasts, videos, etc. for this week.  Type your answers in the box below using your own words, no outline or bullets, complete sentences and paragraphs, single-spaced, full-page. 

I chose to focus again on the escalating situation in/around Syria. “Reuters-Russia said…” addresses Russia (and more silently, China’s) veto threat of the AL-drafted UN resolution aimed at forcing Assad out of power. 5000 plus people have been reported dead in the last ten months, and despite growing international outrage, Russia specifically is disturbed by the violation of sovereignty they see as inevitable given the “fuzzy” language in the text. According to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, if this language were to be changed so that no military intervention would be allowed, they might back off their threat. Given President Obama’s assertion that “Assad will go,” and the actions of the other actors (including Sec. of State Clinton, the UN Security Council, NATO, the EU, strong pressure from key US ally France), such a change of text is not likely. Russia and China hold old views about sovereignty, and will not accept the claim of illegitimacy from the protestors. But the international community is “disgusted” by and will not allow fraudulent sovereignty to be the basis for massacre of innocent civilians who clamor for democratic reform. As such, the impetus for war is ironically (given democratic peace theory) growing. Russia, Syria, Iran and China are expressing a willingness to work together in the interest of defeating recognition of Assad as illegitimate. “Assad will go.” So. Political science is about finding the cause of the next conflict based on assessment of previous ones, right? Understanding the past will help us predict the actions of actors in the future…so, here we go.                   
State? Says who? The first struggle for legitimacy is always from within. The rebel forces in Syria, for example, see Assad as illegitimate and are working to get the intl community behind them. But, as the author of the Economist article is quick to point out, there are no exacting definitions of a state, and this means that recognition from outside is not always enough either…Russia recognizes Assad, but such recognition will likely not save Assad. Because mere recognition from within or from larger communities without is not “enough,” can it be said that there is no enough? That a state is a group of people who stand for or opposed to the governing body of the ruling class in the boundaries specified by past territorial markings? Or is a state what is built by the conglomeration of families who begin pledging allegiance to defend those borders, to defend their laws, their ways of life?  There will always be varying degrees of recognition, says the author, and I agree. In America, many of the Southern Confederate Redux Congress have worked overtime to paint President Obama as illegitimate, and some states are seeking to keep him off of the ballot. This could upset our transfer of power, or even the appearance of it, which could lead to conflict here in a hurry.
Police Power, whether we like specific government policies or not, is what we have granted by accepting our birthright of freedom—by not moving away or pledging outright to overthrow--that our Government can act in our interest, even against us. Is this what we are seeing in Syria? No. They are aligning, as is in their interest, to help Iran retaliate should Israel go on the attack, which they might, in seeking to show the world they are not under America’s thumb. This is going to work to the Confed Redux argument that Obama is no friend of Israel, which will turn a number of evangelicals further against him, and since it will.
By the way, Putin will probably be President of Russia again very soon, whether the people of Russia like it or not—will the International Community react as strongly towards this “illegitimate” move? Are we prepared, or, being prepared for Cold War with Russia, again? First, let’s see how this next week shakes out.


Source citation: “Russia Said...” Gutterman, Steve. Reuters.
“Defining What Makes a Country: in Quite a State.” Economist, print.

No comments:

Post a Comment