Published February 5, 2014 | By George Lehner
The Board of Trustees and staff of the Fund for Peace remember fondly our former Board member, Russell Hemenway, who passed away on January 30, at the age of 88. Russ joined the Board of FFP shortly after it was founded and ultimately was elected a life member of the FFP Board. Russ was also Chair of the Board of one of FFP's larger projects, the National Security Archive, now an independent organization. His commitment and dedication to the mission of the Fund for Peace were constant. His voice and commitment to the cause of peace will be missed.
|The World Square Blog is The Fund for Peace's international marketplace of ideas. At World Square, we aim for open dialogue on the key issues that FFP works on, including fragile states, conflict, security & human rights, and transnational threats.
World Square is also a venue for issues to be brought to FFP: If you would like to discuss an issue with FFP, tweet us at @fundforpeace.
Published February 5, 2014 | By George Lehner
Published February 4, 2014 | By Nate Haken
The Fund for Peace is pleased to advise that we now have new Conflict Bulletins, current for January 2014, available for all nine of the states that make up Nigeria's Niger Delta region. These Bulletins provide an overview of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo, and Rivers states. These Conflict Bulletins draw upon data from ACLED, AOAV, Nigeria Watch, CFR's Nigeria Security Tracker, FFP's UNLocK, WANEP, and CSS/ETH Zurich. P4P compiles state and LGA-level conflict bulletins to highlight patterns and trends in conflict and peacebuilding.
Published January 14, 2014 | By J. J. Messner
When The Fund for Peace’s Human Rights & Business Roundtable was founded in 1996, the relationship between business and human rights was a hot topic, and one that called for much debate. Nearly two decades later, though human rights remains a core theme, the Roundtable has broadened its scope of issues, particularly around implementation and good practices. The Roundtable now examines issues as diverse as sustainable livelihoods and foreign direct investment – though these issues can certainly have a human rights angle, such topics are unarguably much broader than that.
Published December 20, 2013 | By Krista Hendry
As we get ready to enjoy the holiday season with our friends and families and make plans for the New Year, we pause to take a look back from where we’ve come. The challenges of weak and failing states affect us all and we are all needed to make a difference. We need to work together even more this year to help those living under in abject poverty, harsh environments, and sometimes under cruel regimes. At The Fund for Peace, we began calling attention to the underlying conditions of weak and failing states many years ago in order to promote a more peaceful world. Building on our analysis of the risk to human security worldwide, but also human resiliency, we spent 2013 designing programs with partners on the ground to move from early warning to local and early response. We know that it is not enough to warn; we must also prevent.
Published December 17, 2013 | By Asibi Danjuma
Following nearly two years of a bloody insurgency, a sense of calm settled upon the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) after the M23 rebel group called a halt to its operations that have brought terror to the eastern part of the country since April 2012. The last strongholds of the armed group in Tshanzu and Runyoni were captured by the Congolese army, the Forces Armées de la République Démocratique du Congo (FARDC), in early November and talks shifted to hopes of sustained disarmament and peace.
Published November 27, 2013 | By Patricia Taft
Every year, when the Failed States Index is published, we are asked to provide an example of a state that is failing “quietly.” A state that, except perhaps for a handful of concerned parties and outside business interests, does not make most international priority lists. And every year we mention the Central African Republic (CAR). This impoverished, deeply underdeveloped, diamond-rich country is in a very bad neighborhood indeed. Now, however, the country has become a fulcrum of instability in its own right. One that, without some immediate efforts to stop what has been rightfully termed by the International Crisis Group as a “free fall,” is bound to set off a new wave of catastrophe in beleaguered Central Africa.
Published November 26, 2013 | By Katherine Carter
Ten years into recovery from a horrific civil war, Liberia’s political leadership is often held up as a model of gender equality in West Africa. Elected in 2006, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is one of only two female African heads of state – President Joyce Banda of Malawi being the other. In 2011, President Sirleaf won the Nobel Peace Prize alongside another Liberian politician, Leymah Gbowee, for advancing women’s rights to participate peace-building work. In keeping with the recent tradition of having strong female peacemakers as politicians and heads-of-state, Sirleaf’s long-time friend and close political ally, Mary Tanyonoh Broh, seems poised to become Liberia’s next political magnate.
Published November 18, 2013 | By Patricia Taft
Monrovia, Liberia: Nearly ten years ago last month, in October of 2003, I first visited Liberia. Back then, the war that had consumed the country and killed and maimed thousands was only weeks in its ending. In the capital, Monrovia, children as young as six were standing on the side of the road holding rusted out AK-47s with twitchy fingers, eyes bloodshot from whatever combination of drugs their “commanders” had given them to compel their participation in horrible actions. Back then, the FFP was researching the willingness and ability of African nations to undertake peacekeeping and humanitarian intervention missions. Liberia was one of the early test cases and, by most lights, was a successful one.
Published November 15, 2013 | By Nate Haken
The Fund for Peace is pleased to advise that we now have Conflict Bulletins available for all nine of the states that make up Nigeria's Niger Delta region, as well as Plateau state. These Bulletins provide an overview of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo, Plateau, and Rivers states. These Conflict Bulletins draw upon data from ACLED, AOAV, Nigeria Watch, CFR's Nigeria Security Tracker, FFP's UNLocK, WANEP, and CSS/ETH Zurich. P4P compiles state and LGA-level conflict bulletins to highlight patterns and trends in conflict and peacebuilding.
Published November 8, 2013 | By Katherine Carter
Reports frequently cite fragile states (in particular, those in North Africa and the Middle East) as areas susceptible to a breakdown in social cohesion and security when unemployment rises. Disenchanted young citizens initiated the revolts of the Arab Spring in 2011, as both a protest against political oppression and lack of economic opportunity. Such reactions were not confined to the Arab world -- that same year, British unions staged anti-austerity protests throughout the year and riots broke out in the summer; in New York, the Occupy Wall Street movement erupted in the autumn and spread to other cities; and in Greece, riots occurred in the summers of 2010, 2011 and 2012 against austerity measures and rising unemployment. Specific incidents sparked the majority of these protests, but economic stress remained a major underlying cause of tension.