Issue

On War and Peace

Twenty years after the Rwandan genocide, thousands of maimed amputees remind us of the war that took 500,000 lives in 100 days. War leaves marks that cannot be erased—not only in Rwanda, but on every continent.

Reporting from On War and Peace examines the roots of conflict, whether it be religious hatred, sectarian rivalry, a security vacuum, the struggle for natural resources, or the desperation that results from poverty.

Pulitzer Center journalists also cover war’s aftermath: the transitional governments that result in chaos, diplomacy that goes awry, peace talks that never end, and the people who suffer the consequences, young and old. We see the children who go hungry, lose their homes, leave school, become combatants, or join the jihad.

Often the end to conflict leaves turmoil in its wake while the road to peace seems circuitous: In South Sudan, rebel-commanders-turned politicians plunge the country into civil war. In the U.S., troops return home from one war only to be re-deployed to another. But everywhere, in every conflict, there are also voices crying out for peace, determined to heal the divide.

On War and Peace

August 28, 2009

Afghanistan: The Limits of Counterinsurgency

Matthias Bruggman, Nir Rosen

Nir Rosen embedded with American troops in Afghanistan to observe the COIN strategy first-hand, and to explore how, and if, it is in fact working.

June 11, 2009

Somaliland: A Land in Limbo

Tristan McConnell, Narayan Mahon

Somaliland, a breakaway region of Somalia, is Africa’s only fully unrecognized country. After breaking away from Somalia and claiming independence in 1991, the Somaliland government, in stark contrast to the failed state of Somalia, has constructed many facets of a functioning, stable state. Somaliland has carried out several Presidential elections and peaceful transfers of power.

May 03, 2009

Afghanistan: Civilians Under Siege

Jason Motlagh

In 2008, there were over 2,100 civilians casualties across Afghanistan. US airstrikes accounted for 552 deaths, up more than 70% compared to the year before. Militants were responsible for more than half the overall total. The bitter truth is that most of these incidents could be avoided. And yet...

April 01, 2009

Human Terrain: The New Counterinsurgency?

Vanessa M. Gezari

Since 2007, an experimental Pentagon program has been sending teams of civilian anthropologists and other social scientists into the hardest-fought regions of Iraq and Afghanistan to pursue a mission that's both deeply controversial and increasingly important to U.S. military strategy.

Social scientists work within frontline combat units...

May 02, 2008

Afghanistan: Failure of Expectation

Shaun McCanna

The Taliban is not the only threat facing Afghanistan. The rise in poppy cultivation places the country at risk of moving from narco-economy to narco-state, and as eradication efforts continue to prove wildly unsuccessful, the threat increases. Yet the reasons for poppy's growing influence in the country are not...

July 09, 2007

Iraq: Death of a Nation? (revisited)

David Enders, Richard Rowley, Alaa Majeed

"Iraq: Death of a Nation" examines how the U.S. invasion and occupation created a multi-faceted civil war in which the U.S. is now actively arming multiple factions. Last summer, the project focused on how Iraq's refugee crisis was created by the invasion and the fighting that has followed. This...

This Week: Syria's Lawless Land

Impunity for Syria's war criminals, new HIV treatments in South Africa, and a new approach to deradicalization in France in this week's newsletter.