Issue

Conflict and Peace Building

Nearly 30 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 Conflict and Peacebuilding 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.

 

Conflict and Peace Building

The US Detention System in Iraq

Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have been detained by the US, one and a half million have had an immediate family-member detained, almost every Iraqi knows someone who has been through the US detention system. Few American institutions affect the lives of ordinary Iraqis more directly and profoundly than the US detention system.

At one point during "the Surge" the US was holding 27,000 Iraqis. Today it holds 17,000.

Behind the Wall - Inside the Sadr Movement

Moqtada al Sadr and his militia, the Mehdi Army - or 'JAM' in American military shorthand, have been America's most intractable opponents in Iraq. But after recent attacks launched by the US and Iraqi military against Sadr strongholds, cease-fires were negotiated and the Mehdi Army melted away from the streets. Has the Mehdi Army finally been defeated, and is this the end of the armed Shiite resistance to the occupation?

Begins airing Friday, December 5th, 2008 on public television's Foreign Exchange with Daljit Dhaliwal

Native without a Nation

Firasstudents

Firas Majeed is one of the more than one million Iraqi refugees living in Syria. He left his family's home in Baghdad in 2005 to escape the violence that continues to plague Iraq. He made the decision to leave Iraqi for an uncertain future in Jordan after the militia that controlled the neighborhood he was living in demanded he join them.

Part 1- Iraq: Beyond the Wall

Muqtada al-Sadr and his armed group, the al-Mahdi army, have been America's most intractable opponents in Iraq, the only major Shia party to make the demand for US troops to withdraw.

For five years, they have controlled large sections of the country, they have also defied attempts to marginalise them politically, and have fought pitched battles with US Marines. Despite all this, al-Sadr's al-Mahdi army has only grown in size and influence.

Part 2 - Iraq: Beyond the Wall

Muqtada al-Sadr and his armed group, the al-Mahdi army, have been America's most intractable opponents in Iraq, the only major Shia party to make the demand for US troops to withdraw.

For five years, they have controlled large sections of the country, they have also defied attempts to marginalise them politically, and have fought pitched battles with US Marines. Despite all this, al-Sadr's al-Mahdi army has only grown in size and influence.

Part 1 - Reawakening

After two years of campaigning, the US Presidential race enters its final week, and for the most of those two years, Iraq looked like an unwinnable war.

The so-called surge strategy adopted by George Bush, the outgoing president, deployed 30,000 additional US troops to Iraq in 2007 and has dominated, much of the debate about the war.

Both this year's presidential candidates, Barack Obama and John McCain, have praised it as a huge success.

McCain even cites his early support of the surge as his most important foreign policy credential.