Monday, December 25, 2006

Where on earth is the Global Civil Society? Certainly not in Somalia or Ethiopia.

Where are these throngs of do-gooders armed only with good intentions and global cooperation. Why aren't they making headway in this "newest" (new only to the headlines) conflict. The GCS is the network of NGOs that serve the world. Everyone from Human Rights Watch to CARE to Amnesty International and in most definitions, the UN. Mary Kaldor is the Matriarch of this movement if not its author.

"But..." you ask, "are not these organizations present in this conflict?" I imagine a few are. I imagine some have been there for years which illustrates my point. Where are they, where is the measurable progress of the GCS? Why has not the "non-coercive collective action around shared interests and values " stalled Al-Qaeda's advances. Why have they not stopped the further hijacking of Islam via the implementation of extreme Sharia Law?

The polar opposite of GCS is at work in Iraq. It is coercion at is strongest. It also seems to be stumbling. So what is the answer?

Perhaps GCS is the Carrot and the other the Stick. Or more specifically, one is too much Carrot and the other is too much Stick. The answer becomes the proper balance of both.

The problem now is how do you administer these carrots and sticks. Who is the arbiter? What happens when the person or entity that needs carrots looks just like the one who needs the stick? Or worse, you wrongly deliver the stick to those most in need of carrots.

To be sure, there is no easy answer.


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