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On March 20, 2003 The Iraq War other known as The Third Gulf War began. It was initiated with the military invasion of Iraq by The United States of America and its allies to put an end to The Bath Party and Saddam Hussein. According to George W. Bush and his administration's justification for launching the war was because of an alleged Weapon of Mass Destruction Program (WMD) and viewed as a fight against terrorism in hopes of protecting The United States.
The U.S stated that their main intent was to remove a regimen which developed as well as used weapons of mass destruction. It further argued that Iraq harbored as well as supported terrorists and went on to commit outrageous human rights abuses. However, although some of these reasons were justified, the main reason as to why the United States went to war with Iraq was fabricated as Iraq did not have weapons of mass destruction.
It is imperative to comprehend that after the invasion, The Iraq Survey Group that was tasked with searching for the weapons of mass destruction ultimately concluded in their reports that Iraqi production of Weapons of Mass destruction had ceased and, in fact, all major stockpiles in the country had been destroyed in the year 1991 when there were economic sanctions were imposed. The United States and its allies had, therefore, falsified evidence in order to build a case for war. There was the release of the Downing Street memo that was written in the year 2002, where the head of British intelligence argued that intelligence, as well as facts, was being fixed by the United States around policy with the main aim of removing Saddam Hussein from power.
Another reason for war was the alleged link that existed between Saddam Hussein’s government and different terrorist organizations and in particular Al-Qaeda. In order to assert the link that existed between Saddam Hussein and the terrorist group Al-Qaeda, the Bush administration argued that there were ties that existed between Saddam Hussein and a Jordanian terrorist that was referred to as Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi. In fact, in order to further bolster this link, the Secretary of State Powell called Saddam Hussein, a collaborator of Osama Bin Laden.
It is of the essence to comprehend that as with the argument that Iraq had Weapons of Mass Destructions, the evidence that linked Saddam Hussein with Al-Qaeda was discredited by several U.S intelligence agencies, and they include Central Intelligence Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency. The task force that was mandated with getting the link concluded that there were no operational or even collaborative relationship that existed between the two persons.
The United States should never have invaded Iraq, there are those that argue that it should have based on humanitarian grounds. It is no secret that the Hussein government violated human rights and killed and tortured thousands of Iraqi citizens. There was the gassing and killing thousands of Kurds, the repressing of Kurds and Shia uprising following the 1991 Gulf war and the displacement of the Marsh Arabs in Southern Iraq.
However, it should never be forgotten that despite the atrocities that were performed by Saddam Hussein, human rights was never a justification for war, and in fact, it can be argued that the human rights card only became prominent after evidence concerning the presence of Weapons of Mass destruction and the links of Hussein to Al-Qaeda were discredited.
Further, humanitarian groups such as Amnesty International and Human rights watch have often maintained that, even though, there were indeed human rights concern that existed in Iraq, they did not provide enough rationale for the invasion. In fact, military intervention would not have even been justifiable based on Humanitarian grounds. Further, there were areas such as Sudan where there were extreme humanitarian violations, and the United States has never even thought of invading.
Further, the United States and its allies in Europe had supported the Hussein regime in the 1980’s, and this was the period where there existed worst human rights violations and abuses (Keegan 49). This, therefore, cast doubt on the actual sincerity of the claims that were made by the Bush administration that military intervention was needed because of humanitarian grounds.
The Bush administration and other supporters of the war have often stated that the war on Iraq and the continued involvement was and are still a means to combat terrorism. In fact, President Bush often stated that Iraq was indeed a central front when it came to the war on terror. However, in complete contrast to this rationale, the incidence of terrorist attacks in Iraq soil has grown after the invasion. Iraq has been made a potent global recruitment center for jihadists. Further, the United States did the unforgivable mistake of invading Iraq without having a clear exit strategy.
They left a weak government that was soon taken over by insurgents. Currently, the world is battling with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It can be argued that ISIS is indeed a creation of the United States given that they did not leave a working government and consequently created a breeding ground for insurgents such as ISIS. Further, Al-Qaeda leaders have often publicly said that indeed the war with Iraq led to a boom in the operational as well as recruitment efforts. This is because it provided evidence to potential jihadists around the world that America is indeed at war with Islam.
In conclusion, it is lucid that the United States should not invade Iraq. There was no adequate reason as the alleged weapons of mass destruction were never found. Further, the alleged connections between Saddam Hussein and Al-Zarqawi were found to be falsified. It is because of the mess and quagmire that the United States left Iraq in that there has been the rise of several insurgent groups in Iraq such as ISIS. These terror groups are a threat to the world, and they were indeed created by the United States. Therefore, the United States should not have invaded Iraq in the first place.
Keegan, John. The Iraq War. New York: A.A. Knopf, 2004. Print.
The Iraqi conflict has dragged on in International media for years. There has been the highlighting of several issues in the country such as the growing insurgencies, corruption and the fragile peace that exists between communities living in the country. However, there has been very little information regarding how to rebuild Iraq. Almost everyone is pointing a finger at another, but there is no one that has brought an elaborate plan on how to build Iraq.
Therefore, the literature that is dedicated towards this topic is very limited (Special Inspector General, Iraq Reconstruction, 2009). This I think is one of the main challenges that comes with planning the project. Further, the fact, that the Iraqi conflict is unique and that there has never been such a situation before also limits literature even for those that want to rebuild Iraq. This is because the situation in Iraq is extremely unpredictable and it can change any moment and therefore, a plan that looked like it can work today might be described as being shoddy tomorrow.
The Iraq war can be described as a protracted armed conflict that started in the year 2003 (Cordesman, 2003). The conflict began with the advancement that was led by the United States. It is this invasion that toppled the government of Saddam Hussein. However, it is important to understand that the conflict has continued with several insurgencies that are opposed to the occupying forces. The rationale for the war principally on the assertion that the Iraq possessed what it referred to as weapons of mass destruction and that Iraq posed an immediate threat to the United States and its allies.
There has been blame on the invasion on several quarters. Firstly, critics has assailed the United States and its allies regarding not devoting enough troops to the mission. Further, there was no adequate planning for the post-invasion Iraq. The troops that invaded Iraq consistently referred to Iraq war as being the central front on the war on Terror and argued that there was a need for the United States to stay steadfast and not pull out of Iraq.
The war left a trail of destruction in the country of Iraq, crippling the government and destroying key infrastructure such as roads, railways and airports. It is of the essence to understand that at least 134,000 Iraqi Civilians are currently estimated to have died in the conflict and the overall number of casualties has increased (Cordesman, 2003). All the predictions were wrong regarding the war, it was understood that the war would only take a few months. However, the war dragged on for years increasing the destruction of the country of Iraq. There are three issues that are important to look at and understand before beginning the project. This includes the current rise in Insurgencies in the country, the grappling rise in corruption in the government and lastly, the fragile relations that exist between the communities that co-exist in Iraq.
Virtually everybody agrees that the removal of Saddam Hussein dictatorial rule was justified and it was not a mistake. However, at the end of tyranny, there was no promised democracy and the country was plagued by corruption and in-fighting. There has been an increase in the warring tribes and they are extremely heavily armed.
Since America withdrew its troops from Iraq, the failings of the operation has been heightened with different terrorist attacks continuing around the country (Mann, 2011). There was no plan after the invasion and after the disbanding of the Iraqi security ministries there was no replacement. Therefore, it is no doubt that insurgency picked up and therefore, it can be argued that indeed the west are very much responsible for the creation of the insurgency that followed the war.
Therefore, the first challenge regarding the rebuilding of Iraq is the presence of insurgencies in the country. The rise in Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant commonly referred to as ISIL is a true testament of the growing insurgency groups in the country of Iraq. ISIL invaded the Northern Iraqi city of Mosul which is the second largest city in Iraq and continue to expand. The goal of this insurgent group is to erase the border that exists between Iraq and Syria and create an Islamic state I the form of an Extremist Sunni Caliphate that existed since the time of the Prophet Muhammad but was abolished right after World War I.
These insurgent groups such as ISIL have a lot of power and their true capabilities as well as intentions currently remain shadowy and unclear (Tarnoff, 2009). These insurgency groups continue to create untold terror on the locals halting any developmental plans that might go on in the country. Further, they have effectively crippled local government in places where they have established their territorial rule. Therefore, it is describe even for the aid that is sent from foreign nations to reach the Iraqi people who are the ones that need it most.
Another big challenge that has impaired the planning and execution of rebuilding Iraq is the widespread corruption that exists in the country. The sums of money that was spent on the invasion and the subsequent reconstruction of Iraq are growing by the day. However, the aid of Iraq still leaves much to question, with the billions of dollars that were spent on security and projects often failing to come to any reasonable fruition. This has been largely blamed on corruption that exists in the Iraqi system, in fact around 212 billion dollars that were supposed to be spent entirely on the aid of the Iraqi themselves has been swindled.
Most of them still complain that they are living no better than during the sanctions that were imposed on them in the year 1990 by the United Nation after Iraq had decided to invade Kuwait. A quarter of the country lives below the World Bank poverty line, several people have argued that indeed there is a lot of money that is being pumped into Iraq, however, it is those that run the government that skim off with huge profits (Special Inspector General, Iraq Reconstruction, 2009). There is extremely very little that trickles down to the normal and average Iraqi person. Therefore, corruption can be described as thorn to the flesh of rebuilding Iraq and there is a need to ensure that it is eradicated if there is going to be any meaningful development in the war-torn country.
Iraq has several warring communities that have had differences over the years but have managed to co-exist peacefully. However, after the government was toppled and there was no government that was put in place in order to fasten security and basic social amenities, most of the communities in Iraq started to form their own militias in order to protect themselves. For example, the Salafi decided to create their own militias and there was a wide call for the wakefulness of the Holy war in Iraq. The Shia and Sunni are both Muslim groups, however, they have several differences in their faith and consequently, this has caused tensions between them. It can be argued that these tensions were escalated by the lack of a proper running government and the rise in individual militias.
The political and social differences that existed before are currently playing out in the open and most of the communities feel that is their right to either break away from other communities or rule themselves. The Kurds have also formed their militias and they believe that indeed they are entitled to rule Iraq (Mann, 2011). Therefore, it can be seen that indeed Iraq currently lives on a tight rope because of the fragile nature of the warring communities. There can be an inter-tribal clash any moment depending on the escalation of issues. This hostile environment does not allow for the rebuilding of Iraq as there is a need for the people to remain United in order to ensure that they take on challenges head on and rebuild their country.
A researcher should ask several questions regarding the rebuilding of Iraq. Firstly and most importantly, what is the role of the United States in the rebuilding of Iraq? Most people believe that the United States has an obligation towards Iraq. This is because it is the United States that led other nations to the country and removed the government. It therefore, has an obligation to ensure that the country gets another government and it returns to a functional level. Another question that a researcher should ask is regarding corruption and what can be done to stop it in Iraq. Currently, there has been trillions of United States dollars that have been pumped into Iraq in a bid to reconstruct it.
However, this has not been the case and the country is still in a shambolic state (Special Inspector General, Iraq Reconstruction, 2009). There is therefore, a need to ensure that the question regarding corruption is addressed as this will ensure that the plan to rebuild Iraq gets a considerable boost as more money will reach the target spots for reconstruction and development.
Another important question that a researcher should ask is regarding the insurgencies in the country. How can development and reconstruction go on with the insurgents around? Is there a need for a military intervention in order to oust the insurgents? These questions are important as they give a perspective on the role of the international community and especially the United States to ensure that it restores calm and peace to Iraq. The presence of insurgent groups make it extremely hard for any meaningful development to take place and consequently, there is a need for a way to deal with them effectively. Most States in the world are not prepared to take the next step and go and Invade Iraq again without a post-war plan.
In conclusion, there are several challenges that exist in planning for the project notably being the lack of enough and sufficient material regarding the development and reconstruction of Iraq (Cordesman, 2003). There are several topics that I like to understand before the beginning of the project and they include the increase in insurgent groups in Iraq, corruption in the country and lastly the delicate nature of relations that exist between communities in Iraq.
Cordesman, A. (2003). The Iraq War: Strategy, Tactics, and Military Lessons. Paris : Conde Nast publications .
Mann, S. (2011). Donor Activities and Civil Society Potential in Iraq. Chicago: DIANE publishing .
Special Inspector General, Iraq Reconstruction. (2009). Hard Lessons: The Iraq Reconstruction Experience. New York: Sage.
The security sector of a country often comprises of the police and the army. There are times when the security sector of a country becomes more powerful than the civilian sector. There are states where this has been the norm and the security sector plays a major role in the social, economic and political dimension of the country. There are however, other countries where the power is locked in the civilian sector and the security sector is only a subordinate of the civilian sector. This paper is going to examine two countries in the Middle East, Israel and Lebanon. It is going to focus on the security sector and civilian sectors in these countries and which sector is more powerful than the other.
The security troubles of Lebanon have over the years been in the headlines of news around the world. Since the 1960's, the small country that is attractive for its extensive culture and historical heritage has been the principle target when it comes to wars, crime and violence. The security sector was launched in Lebanon in the year 1990's and it has tried to undergo different reforms in a bid to revolutionize itself. The liberation of the Lebanese occupied territories in the year 2000 was seen as a big boost for the Lebanese security sector. However, the sector still faces many numerous challenges (Najem, 2012). The security sector is not strong in Lebanon as compared to the civilian sector because of political and financial corruption. Most of the government institutions such as the security sector suffered what can only be described as substantial damage during the war and the security sector was not adequately rebuilt especially in regards to ethical standards and mechanisms of accountability as well as inspection.
The wasta phenomenon is well known throughout the whole security sector. The wasta phenomenon often functions based on several systems of connections and affiliations to several different high ranking officers and influential politicians (Najem, 2012). The religious as well as sectarian ties that exist in the country often persuade the law enforcement people to be lenient when it comes to violators of the law. The security sector in Lebanon is not properly staffed and it lacks adequate training. The persons are often not specialized to their line of work and the officers that are appointed to specific functions can be said not to possess the requisite skills and knowledge needed. This is especially the case when it comes to prison officers, detectives and persons in street patrols. The lack of professionalism in the security sector can often be seen in the investigative reports that are written in an untailored style (Najem, 2012).
The security sector in Lebanon misses the necessary equipment that is required for a modern security sector. Some of the police stations often lack the basic amenities for proper law enforcement. The questioning rooms are not well equipped (Hafez, 2001). The military is also not well equipped and this has been a thorn in the flesh for the country. The military is also biased politically and this often makes it ineffective in dealing with several problems that might arise during different rulers.
The civilian sector in Lebanon is well organized and is able to perform optimally. Most of the decisions of the state come from the civilian sector sometimes with even no consultation with the security sector. It is the civilian sector that virtually controls the country and most of the resources in the budget of the country are dedicated towards the civilian sector (Najem, 2012). The civilian sector in Lebanon has over the years grown in terms of power because of the unification of the country.
The civilian sector in Lebanon is more powerful than the security sector. In fact, the civilian sector can be said to be more organized than the security sector. The civilian sector uses consociationalism where the highest officers in the land are reserved for representatives for certain religious communities (Hafez, 2001). The civilian sector is more powerful than the security sector as they are better organized and after the war, the institutions for civilians were better developed as compared to those of the security sector. The civilian sector has been able to deal with issues such as the Christian-Muslim-Draze balance that has over the years been a source of conflict in the country. The civilian sector has been able to use this balance to produce what can be described as a viable democracy (Najem, 2012). The fact that Syria maintained a very large military presence in Lebanon has over the years decreased the ability of the security sector in Lebanon and this might be the reason as to why the civilian sector is more powerful than the security sector in Lebanon.
Israel since its formation in the year 1948 has been facing a unique situation in that it is a Jewish state in the middle of Muslim nations. When it was formed, the armies of six Arab nations promised to annihilate the new Jewish state. Israel in turn over the next 15 months after its proclamation was able to annex itself into new territories and Arabs either fled or were expelled from the country. The resulting conflict between Israel as well as the Arab world has seen a lasting displacement which can be seen even today. The Israeli security sector has therefore, grown under this backdrop and there has been a need for Israel to be always prepared for an external attack (Sheffer & Barak, 2010). For this reason, the security sector has become part and parcel for each and every Israeli citizen influencing his or her life in some way or another. It is of the essence to understand that Israeli unique situation has barred it from joining any of the five groupings geographically that would automatically see that it becomes eligible for Security membership in the UN. The country has therefore, been able to grow a robust security sector that has over the years seen it take over more functions from the civilian government.
The Israeli security sector is renowned in the world, it is highly organized and one of the most effective and efficient security forces in the world. Its military referred to as the Israeli defense forces differs from most armed forces in the globe in several ways. Firstly, there is a mandatory conscription of women in it structure and it emphasizes close relations between the air force, the navy and the army (Sheffer & Barak, 2010). The IDF can be said to be designed to match the unique situation that Israel finds itself in. Israeli exists in the middle of countries that it refers to as its enemies. Years in, terrorists try to bomb Israel and annihilate it from the map, therefore, the security forces in Israel has over the years grown stronger in a bid to resist the external insurgents. It is of the essence to note that the Israeli security sector can be described as the most powerful institution in the country. It largely influences Israel's economy, political scene and culture.
The security sector in Israel is highly organized and possesses up to date weapons and computer systems. The association with the United States has been pivotal in making the Israeli security sector what it is today. There is some equipment that comes from the United States and they are modified for use by the Israeli security sector. The security sector has dominated the civilian sector in that most decisions in Parliament are made in consultations with the security forces. Further, the security forces in the country often play a very major role in the running of the country as they give guidelines on how to live.
Conscription to the Security sector by the civilian population is mandatory is Israel. This therefore, goes as much as to show the power that the Military holds over the civilian sector. Beginning the age of eighteen, male and female and even resident aliens have to conscript into the Military (Israel, 1982). The length of the service often varies according to the needs of the IDF. Male conscripts often serve a minimum of three years while females in the country serve up to twenty months. These persons are then required to serve in the reserve army if a need arises. This goes to show the influence that the security sector has over the civilian sector in the country of Israel (Israel, 1982).
It is of the essence to note that the security forces in Israel are subject to the authority of the civilian sector. However, this is only on paper and it is not the reality on the ground. For example, it is imperative to note that the Minister in Charge of the largest security organ, the IDF automatically becomes the minister of Defense. The Chief of General staff that is the commander in Chief of the military is appointed on the authority of the civilian government and is only a subordinate to the Minister of defense but not the ministry of defense. On the reality, the military establishment in Israel has enjoyed what can be described as a high degree of independence (Israel, 1982). This is often evident in the attendance of the chief of General staff in the Cabinet as well as security Cabinet meetings. The Chief of staff attends the meetings not as a subordinate but rather as an equal. The security sector in Israel enjoys an overlarge status on the expense of the civilian sector.
Therefore, it can be seen that Lebanon and Israel are different in that the civilian sector is more powerful than the security sector in Lebanon while in Israel, the security sector is more powerful than the Civilian sector (Gidrôn, 2004). The difference can be seen in organization and management. The Lebanon security sector is not properly organized and it not properly equipped. It therefore, lacks the capacity to dictate terms to the civilian sector. It has been weakened over the years by corruption as well as political affiliations.
The civilian sector in Lebanon on the other hand has grown robustly and it has grown more powerful and it completely controls the security sector in the country. However, this is not the case with Israel. It security sector is extremely powerful and organized. It is mandated with protecting the country's borders and also maintaining internal law and order (Gidrôn, 2004). The Israeli security sector is important in the country given the amount of GDP that is given to the sector as well as the amount of attention that it is given in the media. The security sector has a large say in what goes on in the country and it can be argued that indeed the security sector is more powerful than the civilian sector.
In conclusion, Israel is a unique state and for this reason its security sector is more powerful than the civilian sector. It can be described as a country that is constantly at the brink of war and this has made its security sector to be more vibrant and more dominating as compared to other countries (Kellermann, 1998). The General chief of staff of IDF is extremely influential in the country and stands equal to a lot of civilian leaders. On the case of Lebanon, the civilian sector is more powerful as compared to the security sector. This is because the security sector has been marred by corruption and it has been weakened by several wars and under funding. The civilian sector in the country of Lebanon has been robust and it has been instrumental in the new face life of the country. It has grown more powerful as compared to the security sector.
Kellermann, A. E. (1998). Israel among the nations: International and comparative law perspectives on Israel's 50th anniversary. The Hague [u.a.: Kluwer Law Internat.
Gidrôn, B., Bar, M., & Kats, H. (2004). The Israeli third sector: Between welfare state and civil society. New York [u.a.: Kluwer Acad. / Plenum Publ.
Israel. (1982). The situation in the civilian sector in southern Lebanon, 27 July 1982. Jerusalem: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Information Division.
Sheffer, G., & Barak, O. (2010). Militarism and Israeli society. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
Barak, O. (2009). The Lebanese army: A national institution in a divided society. Albany: State University of New York Press.
Najem, T. (2012). Lebanon: The politics of a penetrated society. London: Routledge.
Hafez, K. (2001). Mass media, politics, and society in the Middle East. Cresskill, N.J: Hampton Press.
Palestine and Israel are two countries that have had a problematic relationship owing to the constant attacks which are mostly aimed at civilians. Among the major attacks are the assault on the Gaza strip that displaced hundreds of Palestine civilians and the attack in the west bank that left at least 15 Palestinians dead. Civilian and security reform programs have already been initiated in the two countries to help them attain a positive economic and political relationship. The formation of the United States security coordinator for Israel and the Palestinian authority (USSC) was the precursor towards the reform of the civilian and security sectors in the two countries. By constructing the headquarters of the USSC in Jerusalem, the US established a persistent reminder to the Palestinian and Israel people of its commitment to promoting peaceful relations between the two states. The US supports peace reforms between the two countries by directly supporting the Palestinian authority security forces through training, infrastructure, equipment and advice since the formation of USSC in 2007 (SSR, 2014). On the other hand, the EU supports Palestinian civilian police with the aim of ensuring stability, provide law and order and reduce terrorism. This paper aims at establishing the similarities and the differences between the civilian and security sector in Palestine and Israel.
Both the Palestinian and Israelite security apparatus are built on the foundation of great intelligence and security agencies. While the Palestinian authority constitutes of the best intelligence and equipments, Israel is a leader in both military security and cyber security (SSR, 2014). Israel enjoys an effective flow of information between the military and the academia that means that the security system is structured on the best research and inventiveness.
The two states have made heavy investments to sustain high-security measures including training of new security personnel. Several institutions have been opened to ensure sustained provision of security training for new security personnel.
Palestine relies on the USSC for support and advice in developing its security systems while Israel is self-reliant in her decisions concerning security and purchase and maintenance of security equipments. The presence of the US and EU force in Palestine makes it impossible for he to make independent decisions (Pike, 2011).
The organization and placement of Palestinian authority are undefined which causes overlapping of roles and responsibilities belonging to the members of the Palestinian authority (Pike, 2011). On the other hand, the security sector of Israel is well structured and organized which makes it more efficient.
The civilian sector in Israel is an apartheid that makes is rather superior to that of Palestine (SeaMAC, 2014). Israel controls everything in the region including exports, imports, and Palestinian borders. Most of the Palestinians suffer low income, poverty and continually interrupted education system.
As seen in the discussion above, Palestine and Israel are two warring countries. Their relations had been ruined owing to continued attacks that were mostly aimed at innocent civilians. Nonetheless, the two countries are on a reform journey following the intervention of different international organizations including the US and EU. Comparing the security and civilian sectors for the two states, Israel takes an upper hand in both infrastructure and organization. However, there are efforts to increase security expertise in both countries. Several institutions have been opened to provide exceptional training on the matters of security. In additional to the physical security, Israel has also been ranked as the best in cyber-security that is also essential in preventing terrorist attacks.
Pike,.J.(2011). Palestinian security sector.
SeaMAC. (2014). Equal rights for Palestinians.
SSR. (2014). SSR country snapshot: Palestinian territories.
Since the end of the Second World War, national defense and mechanisms have significantly been experiencing changes and reformation. Apparently, many governments are shrinking the national defense budgets. Despite the shrinking reforms applied by many nations, the production capacity of national defenses has not experienced many changes. Henceforth, global defense and civilian sectors are becoming more competitive. Nevertheless, despite the strong competition index of national defenses, price of weapons and application of modernized defense systems is drastically changing (Sheffer, 2010).
These changes experienced in the global defense are increasingly fueling changes in the global interrelationships between nations. With the increased weapon accessibility, terrorist activities are increasing (Sheffer, 2013). Similarly, while the governments are investing in the quest of combating these activities, coordination and cooperation between nations is increasing. Moreover, while undertaking and coping with these reforms, it is always important to inherit new policies and laws governing and monitoring the military activities.
In addition to the changing and increasing national defense mechanism, civilization is another aspect characterizing the modern society (Barak, 2010). Prior to adoption of new technology systems, it is always essential to develop structural and strategic mechanisms that govern and coordinate information sharing. Security intelligence is an essential aspect while monitoring the security standards of a country. Normally, security intelligence originates from critical evaluation of the trends in the terrorists activities and as well the vulnerability of the nation to these activities.
In most nations, security standards and civilian sectors date back to history when these nations were in the quest of establishing harmonized societies. Particularly, Israel and Lebanon are among the nations, which have strong security platforms (Barak, 2010). Despite the versified challenges faced by these nations while establishing and restoring harmony in their societies, these nations remain significant examples for developed and modernized civil sectors. The discussion paper aims at evaluating a comprehensive comparison between
Israel and Lebanon’s security and civilian sectors.
With the escalating Syrian civil war chaos, tensions between Israel and Syria are increasing. Apparently, according to security intelligence shared by Israel military officials, they postulated that there are strong likelihoods of a terror attack on the Syrian front. Despite the shared information, these military officials failed to disclose the attackers and the nature of the terror attack. This is a strong aspect of the Israel national security as it indicates a strong perspective of evaluation of possible attacks (Sheffer, 2010).
Additionally, over the last decade, due to the increased terror attacks and vulnerability of nations to these attacks, many nations are significantly diverging and evaluating different aspects of coping with these challenges. Particularly, Israel is divulging its security officials. Additionally, the government defense department is as well taking numerous preventive measures. This is a strong revelation of preparedness of the country in case of terror attack (Sheffer, 2013). The most significant revelation of the preparedness strategic measures is the electronic fence erected along the boundary with Syria (Barak, 2010). Strategically placed, security officials erected this fence aiming at regulating and inhibiting passage of immigrants from Syria to the nation. Lastly, another indication of improved preparedness to terror attack in the country is evident in the deployment of combat and elite groups in these regions. Apparently, while focused at maintaining and regulating a harmonized civil society, many nations invest in their national security sector (Sheffer, 2013). The preparedness mechanisms applied by Israel reveal a strong approach to the global defense mechanism.
Security zones, mostly used as a defense measure is strongly applied by Israel military forces. Dating back to history where Israel had a strong conflict with Lebanon, the conflict was between 1985 and 2000 (Sheffer, 2013). During this period, these nations had strong similarities in their security worries. Precisely, during this period, the security threat spilled by the neighboring Arab nations was an indicator of a reformation period of the applied strategies of coping with security issues and civilian sectors in the country.
Comparing the two security threats, Syrian and Lebanon, there lies strong differences. Firstly, the later did not include strong weapons as in the Syrian front. Additionally, on another perspective, it is essentially viewing Lebanon’s security threat as the turning point for the nature of security policies used. Evaluation of the security zone applied by Israel’s national defense department reveals an upper hand over its rivals. Its role in combating the movement of immigrants from Lebanon reveals a stronger approach in comparison with the later.
A traditional approach of the security and civil sectors in Israel and Lebanon reveals that they are homogenous and in some cases, they as well have some boundaries that continue fragmenting. Apparently, this critical approach reveals the reasons why these sectors have a difference in their interdependence (Barak, 2010). Lastly, according to modern review mechanisms, the question and structure of the relationships between these sectors is essentially meaningless in Israel. In contrast, while comparing the perspective of these sectors in Lebanon, there is a meaningful coherence between these sectors. Surprisingly, despite the strong perception and approach revealed regarding the security sectors of Israel, the fragmenting relationship between civilian and security sector enhances a substantial loss of power on the civilian sector (Sheffer, 2010).
The ideology differing in these two nations significantly raises venues for criticism and the accepted traditional development of the structural hierarchical relationships between civilian and security sectors. In fact, the modernized approach develops avenues for pursuing the different interaction types between these sectors (Barak, 2010). Particularly, from a theoretical perspective, this approach is a strong indicator of a break from the traditional perspectives of civil-security sectors.
The main objective while evaluating these sectors is to develop an all-inclusive view that represents them to have different sections that intermingle and closely and form an informal policy of networking. This approach considers the increased penetration and vulnerability of the civilian sector by terrorists and other retired military personnel. On a situational evaluation of Israel’s civilian sector, researchers and analysts arguably highlight that the power of the civilian sector spearheads the security sector. However, on a critical evaluation of the nature and position of the civilian sector, it becomes evident that the civilian sector has been increasingly experiencing a positional and power decline in the society. The evaluation of the strategic security and civilian power agrees with the critical approach declining the ideas presented by the traditional approach. Surprisingly, Israel’s civilian sector has been experiencing continuous decline and weakening over the last years. It is in contrast with the security sector in the country that is continuously experiencing rising power (Sheffer, 2013). Additionally, as success indicator, it is evading the possibility of facing control and as well the growing intrusion of security officials into the civilian sector.
At this instance, which is precisely unlike some adherents of the developed approach to the underlying differences between these sectors, it is crucial suggesting that it is impossible discarding the existence of the civilian sector in Israel (Barak, 2010). However, while in the analysis, it vital considering and determining the existence of the truly civilian values that lie in the intertwined political and military environments nationally. Nevertheless, despite the strong declining nature of the civilian sector in Israel, at least some aspects and values of the sector exists and have some impacts on the national politics in Israel. However, due to their weakened perspective in Israel, sometimes it is challenging while articulating their existence. As a proof, one could easily perceive these attitudes and views expressed by political movements.
On the other hand, contrasting with the civilian sector of Israel, the security sector perceives a strong attitude and acceptability from the society (Sheffer, 2013). Normally, as perceived by many people, due to the modernized security approaches applied and weapons, security and military sectors in the society are gearing. Establishment of the nuclear weapon plants and programs in the country reveals an accelerated point of approach of the fragmenting relationship with the civilian sector.
On the other hand, comparing the views and perspectives developed in the security and civilian sectors in Lebanon, it is important highlighting on the historical development of these ideas. For decades, Lebanon has been applying autocratic regimes that have continuously used security sector approaches and advancements in the quest of boosting their rule on national and global environments. Power maintenance therefore is coming at a steep cost to the nation. Among Arab nations, specifically Lebanon, security sectors’ unpopularity is deepening. Concurrently, democratically elected governments are finding themselves in continuous difficult fixes in their quest of reformation and struggle of attaining the desired political legitimacy in their states.
Research reveals that Lebanon, currently and historically, has not been dealing with the same revolutionary aspects faced by many nations in the neighboring regions. Particular internal factors have been continuously influencing the nature and perception applied by government officials while aiming at balancing the security and civilian sectors. In their quest, the government is employing some factors that are working in the country’s favor. Precisely, these aspects are supportively improving the security standards and focusing on developing the civilian standards of the nation (Sheffer, 2010). The strategic approach being applied in Lebanon are importantly crucial while developing the security standards and response to terror attacks. Facilitated by the accelerating need for global participation in curbing terror threats, civilian sectors of Lebanon are improving (Barak, 2010).
Security sector of Lebanon are relying on government efforts. Most practices such as training of security officials, is enabling and promoting the government ability to deal with the daily threats. Additionally, it is as well limiting oppression of personal liberties by security officials. Nevertheless, the security sector in Lebanon is highly politicized. Ultimately, most of the top security positions are assigned by majority votes from the cabinet. Henceforth, its power and substantial effect to the society is shrinking (Sheffer, 2013).
Moreover, as the government is focusing on improving the civilian standards of the country, it is increasing the political welfare. Mostly, declining power of civilian sector in a nation is dependent on the welfare cooperation between the security sector and political control over the civilian affairs (Barak, 2010). View poor welfares among security officials cab as the causative factor to the deteriorating specific aspects of civilian environment and affairs such as increasing corruption thereby declining the quality of services rendered to the security officials. Articulating on the aspects used by the government, it is focusing on improving the wage rats and developing a guarantee for the basic needs of these officials.
On a special node, which precisely marks as the differing perspective between the security and civilian sectors between these two nations, In Lebanon, the government does not provide care services to the security officials due to existence of unpaid bills. This is unlike the approach and attitude in Israel, where the government has well-define mechanisms that appeal improved welfare for the security officials (Sheffer, 2010). Evaluation of these aspects, it appears evidently that Israel government has a stronger perspective and grants the security sector more power than the Lebanon government. Similarly, considering the civilian sector, Lebanon government has a well-developed and comprehensive attitude than Israel government.
An ideal security sector has the characteristic of a balanced demographic elementary. However, comparing these nations, statistical evaluation of the recruitment process reveals that Israel’s recruitment process of security officials require a balanced approach (Sheffer, 2013). This implies that all sects of the country have a balanced and fair representation in the security sector. However, in comparison with Lebanon’s security sector, the demographics of the nation are not fairly represented. Nevertheless, as stipulated by researchers and analysts, failure of a fair representation should not be the deterring factor of security officers from undertaking their duties and responsibilities effectively. This indicating factor reveals a strong difference between these aspects of national security sector of the governments (Sheffer, 2010).
Dated back to the security sector used between Lebanon and Israel, the move by Israel seemed more beneficial to Lebanon than Israel. It was through these aspects that the organization gained more legitimacy statuses over Israel government thereby improving its global status as the only nation to pose opposition to Israel. During this period, when these nations were conflicting, it was arguably that Israel was perceived as a first class nation with respect to its security sector advancement and modernization. Israel’s dominance in the region geared its security officials to cross to Lebanon where they created rationale for resisting movements and occupation of Lebanon land.
In comparison with the current standards and status of the security and civilian sectors, it becomes evident that Israel has a direct military engagement in the region. It has a significant influence in combating the security threats posed by terror groups. Additionally, through its advanced security standards, it is controlling and actively engaging in developing mechanisms of controlling the security economy (Sheffer, 2010). Lastly, another essential lesson to learn from the analysis of the standards of these nations, Israel, unlike Lebanon has poor civilian sectors. This can be attributed to the strong attention and attitude of the government on the security sector at the expense of the civilian sector.
In conclusion, as developed in the comparative discussion developed above, balancing the civilian and security sector is often challenging. Henceforth, it is crucial for governments to have strategic approach towards the society perception of the society and focus on developing comprehensive mechanisms that significantly aid in coping with the undiminishing challenge.
Sheffer, G., & Barak, O. (2010). Militarism and Israeli society. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
Sheffer, G., & Barak, O. (2013). Israel's Security Networks: A Theoretical and Comparative Perspective. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Barak, O., & David, A. (January 01, 2010). The Arab Security Sector: A New Research Agenda for a Neglected Topic. Armed Forces & Society, 36, 5, 804-824.
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