Peace, Security and Defence Chair

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Observatorio PSyD

The observatory says

16th of November 2018

Vanguardia de Ideas 16/11/2018

Isabel Adé Portero
Doctora en Historia Contemporánea

Victoria Ontiveros, “Los paramilitares colombianos, enemigos de la guerrilla”,  [06/11/2018].  

“Los grupos paramilitares o “autodefensas” surgen en Colombia como un mecanismo de defensa privada de la propiedad frente a las guerrillas de extrema izquierda. Sin embargo, con el tiempo estos grupos establecen relaciones clientelares con las élites locales, las fuerzas armadas y las redes del narcotráfico que dan pie a un uso desmesurado de la violencia en defensa de sus intereses políticos y económicos. Actualmente, los grupos paramilitares siguen controlando aquellos territorios en los que el Estado colombiano no está presente y haciendo del terror un elemento del día a día en la sociedad colombiana.”  

  Scott D. Sagan, “Armed and Dangerous. When Dictators Get the Bomb”, Foreign Affairs, November/December 2018, [06/11/2018].  

“There have always been good reasons to worry about nuclear weapons, but those reasons have changed over time. During the Cold War, U.S. national security experts fretted about an expensive nuclear arms race with the Soviet Union. After the 9/11 attacks, specialists and the American public alike were afraid that terrorists might get their hands on highly enriched uranium and make a primitive nuclear device. Those dangers remain. But the first concern has been mitigated to some degree by strategic arms control agreements between the United States and Russia, which are still in place (although not always adhered to). And the second concern has been ameliorated through a significant reduction in the amount of highly enriched uranium used in research reactors around the world.

Today, however, there is another reason to worry about nuclear weapons: the rise of personalist dictatorships in states that possess or could acquire the bomb. These dictatorships differ from other autocratic governments because their leaders have such dominant personal power that other state institutions—such as parties, politburos, or military officers—cannot overrule the decisions made at the top. Personalist dictators can make decisions on a whim, which creates a grave challenge to the concept of nuclear stability […].”

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