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Air & Space Power Journal

Volume 04, Issue 4, Winter 2013

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Editorial

National Identity: E Pluribus Unum or E Pluribus 'Pluribus'?

Rémy M. Mauduit
 
Globalization not only increases contacts between people but also changes their values, ideas, and ways of life. People travel more frequently and farther. All forms of the media, especially television, now reach families living in the deepest rural areas of the world. As many experts have warned, globalization presents an unusual challenge to national identities. Today's society appears to be experiencing an accelerating deterioration of such identities through cultural and economic globalization.


Articles

Some Thoughts on the Utilization of the Past in the Military

Floribert Baudet, PhD
 
This article addresses the question of whether military organizations fully exploit the benefits of employing academically trained historians and, as a consequence, discusses the way the military treats the past. Do military organizations still predominantly treat the past as a mirror of the present - a pool of easily accessible knowledge from which to draw clear-cut lessons - as they have for most of recorded history? What exactly do they hope to learn from studying the past? Do the military's expectations match well with what professional historians can offer since they usually have been taught to question the idea that the past can offer unambiguous guidance and are accustomed to the idea of academic freedom. Are there ways to optimize the utilization of the past?


Truth and Justice
Establishing an Appropriate Accountability Mechanism for Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes in Africa

Kofi Nsia-Pepra, PhD
 
The end of the Cold War precipitated optimism regarding a peaceful world order based on ideals of international solidarity and respect for human rights. However, this new attitude slipped into a state of hopelessness with the emergence of devastating conflicts along ethnic, religious, and political fault lines, together with shocking mass human-rights violations such as murder, rape, ethnic cleansing, and other acts of aggression against civilians - especially in Africa. Post-Cold War Africa is blighted by brutish civil wars, such as the 1994 Rwandan genocide, that target innocent civilians. African conflicts have been responsible for more than half of all war-related deaths in the world and have produced millions of refugees and displaced persons.


Strategic Distraction
The Consequence of Neglecting Organizational Design

Colonel John F. Price Jr., United States Air Force

It seems that something happens to the concept of design during transition from the worlds of architecture, manufacturing, and engineering to the realm of organizational leadership. The clear principles of design that give it a revered position as foundational to success in the technical world are somehow lost when the focus shifts away from schematics and micrometer tolerances. Instead of embracing a discipline that brings precision and aligns organizational actions, one finds that its exacting standards often become blurred to the point that organizational design loses its significance. This devaluation results in leaders' failure to fully implement and execute organizational design, which leaves their institutions vulnerable to strategic distraction and misalignment.


War as the Key to Unlocking Mass Murder
The Rwandan Genocide Revisited

Arthur N. Gilbert, PhD
Kristina Hook

 
Since the term genocide was coined in the 1940s to classify specific crimes committed with the intent to destroy the existence of a group of people, this field of study has emerged as one of the most diverse and perhaps even the most divisive in modern academe. In his classic study Revolution and Genocide: On the Origins of the Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust, Robert Melson argues that war, revolution, and genocide are intertwined as revolutionary regimes concurrently turn outward to fight wars and inward to exterminate enemies in their midst. Despite the influence of Melson's framework in this scholastic field, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen dissents, arguing that genocide has little to do with war. In his view, genocide originates in the minds of people, who are in turn affected by culture and ideology.


Essays

Street, Shrine, Square, and Soccer Pitch
Comparative Protest Spaces in Asia and the Middle East

Teresita Cruz-del Rosario, PhD
James M. Dorsey

 
A shrine to the Virgin Mary on a once empty parking lot on the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) symbolizes Filipino people power. It lies at the intersection with Ortigas Avenue, the main thoroughfare that cuts across the upper and middle class as well as expatriate commercial and residential areas of San Juan and Pasig, just shy of the Asian Development Bank. EDSA is Manila's gateway, a 26-kilometer stretch of asphalt and concrete that traverses the city's eight municipalities from Caloocan City in the north to Pasay City in the south. It is no coincidence that the shrine rose at this particular intersection as a site for secular pilgrims in search of a home for their moral vision.


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