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Two Weeks in Austrian Defence | Nov 19

In Blog, English by Bernhard Völkl

TWIAD is your bi-weekly, English-language briefing on national security and defence affairs in the alpine republic. The most relevant news reports, press releases, articles and announcements are recapped and, where necessary, put into context for greater accessibility. Feel free to get in touch and leave us your feedback and thoughts, ask questions in the comments or join the #TWIAD raucity on Twitter!

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This summer in Austrian defence | TSIAD 2018

In Blog, English by Bernhard Völkl

TWIAD is your bi-weekly, English-language briefing on national security and defence affairs in the alpine republic. The most relevant news reports, press releases, articles and announcements are recapped and, where necessary, put into context for greater accessibility. Feel free to get in touch and leave us your feedback and thoughts, ask questions in the comments or join the #TWIAD raucity on Twitter!

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Red Sparrow – a movie about US-Russia relations

In Blog, English by Hanna GriningerLeave a Comment

SPOILER ALERT: This text is a reflection on the 2018 spy thriller Red Sparrow. If you haven’t seen it yet, you might want to read on after a trip to the movies. You may ask what a racy flick has to do with current political affairs, because, of course, it is fiction and meant to entertain rather than educate. That notwithstanding, it can tell us a lot about stereotypes, moral perceptions of right and wrong and about who is the good and the bad guys. Now don’t get me wrong; I think that Red Sparrow is an entertaining movie which I enjoyed watching. Alas, finding it hard to switch off the philologist and security studies researcher, I just couldn’t ignore the socio-political context and stop analyzing it from a humanities point of view.

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Science, Science, and Science – Gerasimov’s 2018 speech

In Blog, English by Christoph BilbanLeave a Comment

Scientific hotspots and an old story Valery Gerasimov held his first speech at the yearly assembly of the Russian Academy of Military Sciences five years ago. It soon became (in)famous as the “Gerasimov doctrine” (see also my comment here), and only recently Mark Galeotti, the inventor of the term, admitted he consciously mislabeled his blog post in 2014 when looking for a catchy title. Some weeks ago, the Voenno-Promyshlenny Kur’er (Military-Industrial Courier) once again featured a speech of Gerasimov’s, in an article called “Scientific Hotspots.” While this marks the first time that it wasn’t Gerasimov himself who authored the transcript, it nonetheless resembles a genuine piece of his thinking. Unsurprisingly, his description of the global security situation suits Russia’s siege mentality.

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The Syrian conflict’s fallout in Lebanon – and Hezbollah’s role in the quagmire

In Blog by David FussiLeave a Comment

The Syrian civil war affects Lebanon in a myriad of ways, and ever since the outbreak of the conflict in 2011, the security situation in parts of the country deteriorated decisively . The Lebanese state was challenged the most in two hotspots: Tripoli, the second largest city, where radical groups took over parts of town for a few months, and the northern Bekaa Valley on the border to Syria, where ISIS and similar groups held out for more than three years. In summer 2017, Hezbollah took a strong position against these Syrian militias in Lebanon and launched a large scale offensive to regain state monopoly in the border region. The article argues that this takeover and execution of state functions is seen very controversial in Lebanon and abroad, especially because Hezbollah is heavily dependent on its protector Iran.