Political and Socio-Economic Change: Revolutions and Their Implications for the U.S. Military

Political and Socio-Economic Change: Revolutions and Their Implications for the U.S. Military
Political and Socio-Economic Change: Revolutions and Their Implications for the U.S. Military
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Dramatic political, economic, and social changes across both the Greater Middle East and Latin America over the last several years—in some instances revolutionary, in others evolutionary—have had profound implications for global security generally and U.S. security specifically. Policymakers in Washington are hence confronted with the issue of how to respond to the various changes in these disparate regions in order to safeguard U.S. interests, promote Western values, and shape the security environment into the future. Whether and to what degree U.S. policymakers can influence the unfolding changes and shape outcomes remains to be seen. But if Washington is to achieve success in this regard though, it will likely only be possible through the skillful employment of a variety of policymaking tools, including development, diplomacy, and defense.  The authors assess the changes across these two important regions, outline the implications for U.S. security and specifically for the U.S. military, and offer policy recommendations for the way forward.

GREGORY AFTANDILIAN is a Senior Fellow for the Middle East at the Center for National Policy. He has spent over 21 years in government service, most recently on Capitol Hill. He was foreign policy advisor to Congressman Chris Van Hollen (2007-08), professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and foreign policy adviser to Senator Paul Sarbanes (2000-04), and foreign policy fellow to Senator Edward Kennedy (1999). Prior to these positions, Mr. Aftandilian worked for 13 years as a Middle East analyst at the U.S. Department of State where he was a recipient of the Department’s Superior Honor Award for his analyses on Egypt. His other government experiences include analytical work on Middle East affairs for the U.S. Department of Defense and the Library of Congress. In addition, he has lectured widely on Middle East affairs and has been a panelist at various universities, think tanks, and institutes. Mr. Aftandilian holds a B.A. in history from Dartmouth College, an M.A. in Middle Eastern studies from the University of Chicago, and an M.S. in international relations from the London School of Economics.

JOHN R. DENI joined the Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, in November 2011 as a Research Professor of Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational (JIIM) Security Studies. He previously worked for 8 years as a political advisor for senior U.S. military commanders in Europe. Prior to that, he spent 2 years as a strategic planner special-izing in the military-to-military relationship between the United States and its European allies. While working for the U.S. military in Europe, he was also an adjunct lecturer at Heidelberg University’s Institute for Political Science where he taught graduate and undergraduate courses on U.S. foreign and security policy, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, European security, and alliance theory and practice. Before working in Germany, Dr. Deni spent 7 years in Washington, DC, as a consultant specializing in national security issues for the U.S. Departments of Defense, Energy, and State. He has spoken at conferences and symposia throughout Europe and North America. Dr. Deni is the author most recently of the book Alliance Management and Maintenance: Restructuring NATO for the 21st Century, as well as several journal articles and monographs. He has published op-eds in major newspapers such as The Los Angeles Times and the Baltimore Sun. Dr. Deni completed his undergraduate degree in history and international relations at the College of William & Mary. He holds an MA in U.S. foreign policy from the American University in Washington, DC, and a Ph.D. in international affairs from George Washington University.

PHILIP BRENNER is Professor of International Relations and Affiliate Professor of History at American University. A former senior associate dean for academic affairs in the School of International Service, he also has served as director of the U.S. Foreign Policy program, and chair of the Department of International Politics and Foreign Policy. In 2008 he was named American University’s “Teacher of the Year,” and in 2000 he received a Diploma Honoris Causa from the Inter-American Defense College. A specialist in U.S. foreign policy toward Latin America, he has been engaged since 1974 in research and writing about Cuba and U.S.-Cuban relations. Dr. Brenner holds a B.A. from Columbia University in history and a Ph.D. in political science from Johns Hopkins University.

I. WILLIAM ZARTMAN is the Jacob Blaustein Professor Emeritus of International Organizations and Conflict Resolution at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of Johns Hopkins University, a member of the International Steering Committee of Processes of International Negotiations (PIN) Program, Clingendael, Netherlands, and serves on the International Academic Advisory Council on Mediation of the United Nations Department of Political Affairs. Dr. Zartman is the author and editor of such books as The Global Power of Talk (2012); Negotiation and Conflict Management (2008); Essays on Theory and Practice (2010); Cowardly Lions: Missed Opportunities to Prevent Deadly Conflict and State Collapse (2005); Rethinking the Economics of War: The Intersection of Need, Creed and Greed (2005); and, Ripe for Resolution (1989). Dr. Zartman holds a Ph.D. from Yale University and an honorary Ph.D. from the Catholic University of Louvain, and a lifetime achievement award from the International Association for Conflict Management.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents:


1. Navigating Change: American Defense and Foreign Policy in Response to Revolutions...1
John R. Deni

2. Revolutions and Their Implications—A Focus on the Middle East Region.........9
Gregory Aftandilian

3. The Limits of American Power—Challenges and Opportunities in Washington’s Response To the Arab Spring..............27
I. William Zartman

4. The Implications of Political and Socio-Economic Changes in Latin America.......45
Philip Brenner

About the Contributors.................... 77


Foreign military leaders and officers, military science students, U.S. policy makers, analysts, leaders and foreign policy advocates may be interested in the methodologies explored in this text.  Additionally, undergraduate and graduate students in homeland security, U.S. national security, International Studies, military science, public administration and political science programs may wish to have this book on their reading list.

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Defense Dept., Army, Strategic Studies Institute; and Army War College
  • Deni, John R.
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Key Phrases:
  • Socio Economic Change
  • Revolutions and Their Implications for the United States Military
  • Social and Economic Change
  • Middle East
  • North Africa
  • Latin America
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