Terry, Fiona: Condemned to repeat? The paradox of humanitarian action. - Ithaca : Cornell Univ. Press, 2002. - 282 S. + Rieff, David: A bed for the night: humanitarism in crisis. - New York : Simon & Shuster, 2002. - 367 S. + Enthält Rezensionen von: Minear, Larry: The humanitarian enterprise: dilemmas and discoveries. - Bloomfield/Conn. : Kumarian Press, 2002. - 285 S
This article serves as an introduction to the articles in this special issue of the Journal of Human Rights on humanitarianism and responsibility. We thread the work of our contributors, along with other key scholars, together into a broader discussion about the possibilities and limitations of humanitarian responsibility. We first elaborate several constitutive dimensions of responsibility as it has been understood in humanitarian discourse, with particular attention to the way in which it has been deployed to both limit and extend the humanitarian mandate. We then consider how the discourse of humanitarian responsibility constitutes a departure from, and a possible alternative to, the discourse of human rights as the reigning lingua franca in which ethical arguments are advanced at the global level. Ultimately, we contend that while renewed emphasis on responsibility is no panacea for the difficult political and ethical questions that bedevil international humanitarianism and should not displace the focus on human rights, the process of critically engaging with this term may present a valuable opportunity to rethink the pursuit of global justice as a situated and contingent engagement between the self and those distant and proximate others who are exposed to catastrophes, natural and man-made. Adapted from the source document.
Abstract In recent years, humanitarianism has been portrayed as a revolutionary new force in the anti-nuclear movement. This article challenges this progressive understanding of humanitarianism's role in nuclear affairs by exploring how the language and concept of humanitarianism have been deployed by two states that have been deeply involved in international nuclear law projects over the last 50 years: Australia and New Zealand. It argues that contrary to popular perceptions about the radical potential of humanitarianism in nuclear affairs, the phenomenon's track record in Australia and New Zealand is chequered. Indeed, in certain key respects, humanitarianism has impeded anti-nuclear agendas in Australia and New Zealand: first, the ambiguity inherent in the language of humanitarianism has allowed it to be deployed to support the maintenance of nuclear weapons; and secondly, humanitarianism has generated outcomes that often support and reinforce the status quo legally and structurally. The article also offers some reflections on the relationship between humanitarianism and international law in the nuclear context. Specifically, it shows how the Australian and New Zealand case studies reveal contradictory approaches to, and understandings of, humanitarianism as law.
ABSTRACTHumanitarianism – that is, the political, economic and military interference in the domestic affairs of a state justified by a nascent transnational morality – is one of the defining and most controversial features of the post-Cold War period. This article advances nine theses, arguing that humanitarianism has a simplistic worldview, that coercive humanitarian actions trigger negative consequences, that humanitarianism is quite effective in sheltering Western states from the spillover effects of political crises but is less so in solving the problems it claims to address. These arguments are illustrated with reference to four prominent cases: Bosnia, Kosovo, Rwanda and Darfur. The article concludes with a brief outline of an alternative humanitarian approach.
This contribution describes the speaker's experiences working with World Vision International (WVI). It demonstrates the power of cooperative efforts in the partnership between WVI, the World Health Organization (WHO), World Food Programme (WFP), and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC), along with localized NGOs. Through the relation of poignant anecdotes from the speaker's background, it demonstrates the potential for strategic alliances to build mutually supportive relationships between agencies. The contribution asserts that through the cooperation and coordination of international humanitarian organizations and NGOs, it will be possible to make the mechanisms for aid distribution at the local level operational. Finally, the article calls for a revitalized effort to develop new ways to lay the foundation for humanitarian partnerships and reconciliation of suffering and alienated populations. W. A. Butler
Explores the ethical dilemma of providing humanitarian & foreign aid to areas where political tyrants & perpetrators of mass violence may benefit, but argues that the withdrawal of life-saving services in protest is unacceptable. Relentless & tenacious efforts by aid agencies to stop human rights violations can force negligent or ruthless governments & groups to change. US ostracism of the Democratic Republic of Congo diminished Washington's influence in central Africa, while engagement with the People's Republic of China, despite its human rights violations, offers potential leverage. Governments & agencies should not politicize their humanitarian efforts, but should work to humanize the political agenda of nations. Even though caught in a foreign policy vacuum, impartial humanitarian aid agencies cannot place themselves in the position to determine fugitives among the refugees & the undeserving among the destitute. L. A. Hoffman
Introduction : Cultures of Humanitarianism, Old and New / Volker Heins and Christine Unrau -- Humanitarianism's Contested Culture in War Zones / Thomas G. Weiss -- Humanitarianism Reborn : The Shift from Governing Causes to Governing Effects / David Chandler -- Instrumentalisation of Aid in Humanitarian Crises : Obstacle or Precondition for Cooperation? / Dennis Dijkzeul and Dorothea Hilhorst -- Decoding the Software of Humanitarian Action : Universal or Pluriversal / Antonio Donini -- More than morals : Making Sense of the Rise of Humanitarian Aid Organisations / Kai Koddenbrock -- Stronger, Faster, Bette r: Three Logics of Humanitarian Futureproofing / Kristin Bergtora Sandvik -- Science and Charity : Rival Catholic Visions for Humanitarian Practice at the End of Empire / Charlotte Walker-Said -- Religion and (Non-)Cooperation in Tanzanian Communication Campaigns against Female Genital Cutting / Mathis Danelzik -- Islamic Charities from the Arab World in Africa : Intercultural Encounters of Humanitarianism and Morality / Mayke Kaag -- The Changing Role of China in International Humanitarian Cooperation : Challenges and Opportunities / Hanna Bianca Krebs -- Between Marketisation and Altruism : Humanitarian Assistance, NGOs and Private Military and Security Companies / Jutta Joachim and Andrea Schneiker -- The Impact of the Security Council on the Efficacy of the International Criminal Court and the Responsibility to Protect / Aidan Hehir and Anthony F Lang Jr
In this commentary on Michael Barnett's article Humanitarianism Transformed (this volume), the author argues that the current politicization of humanitarianism offers opportunities as well as constraints. Asserting that the end of the Cold War opened the way for transformative logics, humanitarianism has been evolving to allow explicit consideration of the political. Although the author agrees with Barnett's assessment of increased professionalization & institutionalization of humanitarianism, the broader question of defining the causal sequence of continued dependence on external resources must be addressed. The phenomena of fused politics of solidarity & governance is identified as the determinate of future success by organizations in the next wave of humanitarianism. References. J. Harwell