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There seems to a prevailing opinion among International Relations’ scholars that our world is one of perpetual crises. The moment one crisis ends, such as the threat of Ebola, another begins, such as Russian military involvement in Syria. Communication has always been an integral part of crisis management. Moreover, diplomatic crises are often defined as a breakdown in communication between states.
During diplomatic crises, nations make frequent use of the media. At times, this is in order to pass indirect messages to other nations. At other times, this is an attempt to control the narrative of the crisis in the local and global press. Controlling the narrative of a crisis may be achieved through the utilization of networks. Such activities are in line with a networked model of diplomacy, as opposed to the club model (for more on this see Jorge Hiene’s paper). Networks may be made up of diplomatic…
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The real frontline confronting ISIS is not US or French bombers (the latter currently targeting Raqqa, a city with 140,000 civilians, who are virtual prisoners of ISIS) but the Kurds of Iraq and northern Syria. Just over a week ago the combined Kurd forces, under the command of the Yezidis, liberated Sinjar from ISIS. For the Kurds, their war is not just about defeating ISIS, but about creating their own autonomous region – a region that would link all the Kurd cantons. This will not be easy, especially as the Iraq-based Kurds (Peshmerga) are allied with Iran and benefit from US support (nor are the Iraqi Kurds in any hurry to secede from Iraq). But the largest hurdle to an autonomous Kurdistan is Turkey, which not only has rekindled its war with the PKK (Kurdish Workers Party), but has done everything it can over the…
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