2011-10-10-12.17.19-pmEditors' Note:

From immigration rallies in the United States to separatist movements in Asia, competing identities often find themselves in conflict with one another. Nationalism and identity can play both unifying and divisive roles. Groups that identify with each other are brought together, while those that see themselves as incompatible are often pushed apart. In the extreme, the ideas of nationalism and group identity have prompted unrest, rebellion, and even war. This issue’s Forum, Pledging Allegiance, analyzes how states and international actors can best respond when nationalism and identity become instigators of conflict.

Our Forum contributors offer an in-depth look at the intersection between these elements. Edwina Barvosa discusses second-generation immigrants in the United States, while Nicholas Miller examines the contentious role of nationalism in the Balkans. Eduard Ponarin and Irina Kouznetsova-Morenko analyze the role of religion in nationalist movements by looking at the interesting case study of Tatarstan. Finally, Baogang He argues that federalism could present a solution to Asia’s ethnic conflicts.

Other articles in this issue discuss themes of conflict. Michael Green argues that with increasing tensions in North Korea and China’s growing predominance, a strong U.S.-Japan alliance is needed now more than ever. Casimir Yost analyzes the recent Palestinian and Israeli elections and makes recommendations for a path forward. And Bathsheba Crocker argues that the international community must intervene in Haiti if it is to avoid yet another collapse.

Finally, this issue also features the ever-important issue of development assistance. Anisya Thomas looks at a survey of tsunami victims to chart a better path for crisis aid in the future. Callisto Madavo, former regional vice president for Africa at the World Bank, looks back at the past fifty years of aid to Africa. And Andrew Natsios, former USAID administrator, provides his thoughts on development and the situation in Darfur.

The world is changing, and so is the Journal. We feel honored to have led this dynamic and growing publication over the last year. We would like to extend our most sincere expressions of gratitude to our faithful readers, who have made this one of our most successful years ever; to our authors, who have consistently provided us with the most thought-provoking and insightful material; and to our staff, who have worked so hard to help us put this issue together.

– Margo M. Huennekens & Lorin Kavanaugh-Ulku


In this Forum we read between the headlines to take on a perennial issue: the role of national identity in violent conflict. Immigration, war, and other forms of social upheaval challenge existing community boundaries and show us how nationalism can be exploited in moments of crisis. As the United States struggles to define who is “American,” the Russian Federation works to tame its breakaway regions, various states in Asia seek ways of governing multinational states, and memories of the Balkan crisis shape perceptions of nationalism, the time is ripe for a new discussion of the challenges that national identity poses for the state. This Forum examines when the boundaries that define communities become the fault lines for violent conflict.

Business & Economics

  • Tear Down Those Walls: Agriculture, Development, and Trade Negotiations by Kimberly Ann Elliott | Read  

Developed-country tariff reductions offer great promise, but developing countries must prepare themselves to capitalize on the opportunities.

Conflict & Security

  • Common Values: A New Agenda for U.S.-Japan Relations by Michael Green | Read  

The U.S.-Japan alliance can be enhanced through bilateral defense consultation.

  • Coming Home Whole: Reintegrating Uganda's Child Soldiers by Lorea Russell and Elzbieta M. Gozdziak | Read  

Successful reintegration of child soldiers into society must include psychosocial therapy.

  • Frozen Legacy: U.S.-Russian Strategic Nuclear Relations by Martin Senn | Read  

Former patterns of East-West conflict continue to dominate U.S.-Russian nuclear relations.

Culture & Society

  • Growing Pains: Australia's Adolescent Multicultural Policy by Gregory Brown | Read  

Recent riots in Sydney challenge Australia’s title as an immigration success story.

  • The Changing Tide of Aid Provision by Anisya Thomas | Read  

Without accountability to the victims of a natural disaster, humanitarian aid will never be effective.

Law & Ethics

  • Indicting Zarqawi for Genocide by Raj Purohit and Golzar Kheiltash | Read  

Can international humanitarian law take on international terrorism?

Politics & Diplomacy

  • Mission Not Accomplished by Bathsheba N. Crocker | Read  

The world must not declare success in light of recent elections in Haiti.

  • The Internet, Censorship, and China by William Thatcher Dowell | Read  

Is China’s control of the media slipping or are Internet giants selling out for a share of the market?

  • Transforming Separatist Conflict by Rodd McGibbon | Read  

Civil society responses to the tsunami explain divergent paths of conflict in Aceh and Sri Lanka.

The former USAID administrator discusses the lessons of Sudan and the importance of transformational development.

  • Hamas, Israel, and the Prospects for Peace by Casimir A. Yost | Read  

Recent elections have clarified the likely eventuality of renewed conflict with a third Intifada.

Science & Technology

  • Leading the Renewable Energy Revolution by Joanna I. Lewis | Read  

China’s entry into the global renewable energy market may decrease costs and increase utilization.


  • Opening Pandora's Box: Alternative Illicit Trade Control by Jeffrey Miron | Read  

Review of Moises Naim’s Illicit: How Smugglers, Traffickers and Copycats are Hijacking the Global Economy.

Review of Catherine M. Conaghan’s Fujimori’s Peru: Deception in the Public Sphere.

View from the Ground

  • Missing in Action: Mass Male Migration and Mexican Communities by Charles Wright | Read  

Mass migration to the United States has had a distinctive impact on communities in Mexico.

A Look Back

  • Empowering Women: Ten Years after the Beijing Conference by Carolyn Hannan | Read  

The director of the UN’s Division for the Advancement of Women reflects on the major achievements in the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women.

  • Marching to a Different Drum: The World Bank and African Development by Callisto Madavo | Read  

The key to the World Bank’s ultimate legacy may lie in Africa, the world’s poorest continent.

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