Strategic Engineered Migration as Weapon of War
After reading the title, you may think it is describing the phenomenon that Europe has recently been facing: the hundreds of thousands of refugees, both victims of the hardships of civil wars and opportunists, who are invading the Balkans by land and by sea and then making their way further, trying to reach richer countries like Germany, France and Scandinavia by any means possible.
It would seem that this stream of refugees has objective reasons: armed conflicts and wars have been going on in Libya, Syria and Iraq for many years, while the situation is also turbulent in Palestine and Afghanistan. In Tunisia and Egypt, meanwhile, both of which experienced the Arab Spring, the situation also leaves much to be desired. Hardly anybody is taking notice of Bahrain, where opposition protests have been brutally suppressed for years, while in Yemen, air strikes are even being carried out on wedding processions. The location of these two states is not very convenient, however – there is simply nowhere to flee. There is also another important detail: camps are being built for Muslim refugees in Saudi Arabia, but nobody is going there for some reason. As a last resort, they stay in Jordan and Turkey.
Is there also some general reason for their frantic desire to flee so far from their homeland? Wealthy relatives who have already settled in the European Union, perhaps? Or stories about welfare benefits on which they will be able to live comfortably? After all, to make such a journey they have to pay handsomely for the services of smugglers. According to some reports, these smugglers take between $4,000 and $10,000 to transport a single refugee from Syria or Libya to Europe. Even if this person has wealthy relatives abroad, receiving money via bank transfer is impossible in war-torn Syria. Organising transportation on credit clearly involves certain guarantees, especially considering that the boats often sink in the Mediterranean.
Who is providing guarantees that encourage hundreds of thousands of people to rush from other continents to Europe and why?
Researchers have discovered a very interesting fact related to the use of social networking sites. It has come to light that calls on Twitter for refugees to travel to Germany have mostly come from the US
(Who is twitter-luring refugees to Germany?
The time spent practising in other countries has not been in vain – from Iran during the 2009 presidential elections to Egypt and Tunisia, where the role played by social networking sites in mobilising the population was considerable.
What we are seeing now is the practical implementation of theoretical calculations of a strategic nature. Such strategies have been under development for a long time. One of them is a study by the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University (http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/) that bears the name «Strategic Engineered Migration as a Weapon of War» (http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/publication/18120/strategic_engineered_migration_as_a_weapon_of_war.html), which the author also uses for the title of this article. The study was first published in 2008 in the Civil Wars journal. Using a combination of statistical data and case study analysis, the author of the work, Kelly Greenhill, provides answers to the following questions: can refugees be a specific type of weapon, can this weapon only be used in wartime or in peacetime as well, and just how successful can its exploitation be? On the whole, Greenhill answers these questions in the affirmative.
In fact, researchers at the Belfer Center, along with researchers from other departments at Harvard University, have been working on designing strategies for conflict management in the context of broader foreign policy issues for many years. The director of the Belfer Center, Graham Allison, was an assistant secretary of defence in the Clinton administration. As well as this, the Center also funds the research of a special task force devoted to Russia.
The US is only pretending to sympathise with Europe, which is being hit hard by the migratory wave. In a recent article (Managing Europe’s Perfect Storm https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/mitigating-refugee-impact-europe-by-richard-n–haass-2015-10) by Richard Haass, president of the influential globalist organisation Council on Foreign Relations that deals with European issues, the use of the word «managing” with regard to the migration crisis in the European Union was no accident. Savouring the problems being faced by Europe as a result of the influx of refugees, Haass notes that the US has both an obligation to help the European Union and strategic interests with regard to Germany and Europe as a whole. Despite this «obligation to help”, however, there has been no help at all from the US either in controlling the illegal infiltration of European countries or in terms of the temporary settlement of refugees.
There is also another interesting fact. On 15 September, Barack Obama signed an executive order on the use of behavioural science techniques in public administration. The most recent branch of behaviourism, known as «Nudge”, is nothing more than the latest way to manipulate people. The hand of Cass Sunstein (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cass_Sunstein), who previously worked at the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Obama administration, can clearly be seen here. Along with a British colleague, he co-authored the book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nudge_(book)), in which psychological manipulation techniques in the context of everyday life are hidden behind fine words. (Incidentally, Sunstein’s wife is Samantha Power, United States Ambassador to the UN.) There is no doubt that the ‘nudge’ technique will be used far beyond the borders of the US.
The most effective weapon, however, both metaphorically and literally, may be those migrants capable of setting up a small guerrilla group to carry out subversive terrorist acts on the new territory. It is rather interesting that the US is not just playing host to the ones who seem the most ‘promising’ for this, but is also granting them refugee and resident status as well as the official protection of the US government.
As far as one can judge from a recently leaked internal document, a special report to US Congress for the 2014 financial year on the issue of migration prepared by the US Department of Homeland Security states that in 2014, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services applied 1,519 exemptions (http://www.judicialwatch.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/DHS2014.pdf) to individual applicants granted refugee status, resident status, and the official protection of the US government. And the most interesting thing is that in one way or another, all of these people have links with terrorist groups and extensive experience of subversive activities.
The list includes old allies of Washington from among Cuban exiles, Kosovo Liberation Army militants who for some reason cannot live well in their own artificially created state, and many other covert and overt allies of the US. There are members of the Nationalist Republican Alliance from Salvador, most likely those who shot political opponents during the Cold War and are now hiding from justice. There are fighters from the Democratic Movement for the Liberation of Eritrean Kunama – ethno-separatists who are opposed to the Eritrean government. There is the Tigray People’s Liberation Front from Ethiopia and the Oromo Liberation Front from the same country.
The list also includes activists from the Burmese Chin National Front and its military wing, the Chin National Army, which are members of the so-called Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO). Members of the Karen National Union, including militants of the Karen National Liberation Army (an ethnic group living in Burma and Thailand) also received a quota to live in the US on the spot.
Refugee status was given to 49 former Iraqi citizens from the Iraqi Democratic Party, the Kurdish Democratic Party and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. The list of «1,519 exemptions” also includes members of other organisations that have devoted many years to armed conflicts.
One can only speculate on the kind of future wars the US has in mind if it is planning to use such specific migrants as a weapon.
Who is twitter-luring refugees to Germany?
Content-analysis of a great number of tweets that triggered the ongoing wave of migration from Turkey to Germany since August this year suggests that these human streams were inspired and channeled from outside of the continental Europe.
According to Vladimir Shalak from the Russian Academy of Science who developed the Internet Content-Analysis System for Twitter ( Scai4Twi), his study of over 19000 refugees-related original tweets (retweets discounted) demonstrates that the vast majority of them mention Germany and Austria as the most refugee-welcoming countries in Europe:
Importantly, 93% of all tweets dedicated to Germany contained positive references to German hospitality and its refugee policy:
• Germany Yes! Leftists spray a graffiti on a train sayin “Welcome, refugees” in Arabic
• Lovely people – video of Germans welcoming Syrian refugees to their community
• Respect! Football fans saying “Welcome Refugees” across stadiums in Germany.
• This Arabic Graffiti train is running in Dresden welcoming refugees: (ahlan wa sahlan – a warm welcome).
• ‘We love Germany!,’ cry relieved refugees at Munich railway station
• Thousands welcome refugees to Germany – Sky News Australia
• Wherever this German town is that welcomed a coach of Syrian refugees with welcome signs and flowers -thank you.
Analysis of 5704 original tweets containing ”RefugeesWelcome” hashtag and a country name lead to even larger gap between Germany and the rest of Europe:
The next step is to study the source twitter accounts where the hashtag RefugeesWelcome + Germany originate. Next diagram shows the countries of origin of the relevant twitter accounts (where they could be idenfitied):
As you see, only 6,4% of all tweets with “RefugeesWelcome”+Germany came from Germany itself. Almost half of them were originated from UK, USA and Australia! Looks like your remote planetmates are blushlessly inviting guests to visit your home without inquiring your opinion beforehand!
A couple of popular samples:
Lotte Leicht, director of Human Rights Watch’s Brussels Office, August 30 (source https://twitter.com/Lot…/status/637934077635612672/photo/1).
Washington Post, September 1 (source https://twitter.com/washingtonpost/status/638501298116145152).
Further analysis shows that it was only a beginning. A whole army of netbots has galvanized ‘hit-the-fan’ effect to the topic.
On Aug 27 forty automatic netbots @changing_news, @changing_news1,…, @changing_news39 from the United States simultaneously issued the following tweet at 8:00:33AM:
«A new welcome: Activists launch home placement service for refugees in Germany and Austria News Change Help»
On Sept 1 the same group of netbots releases same tweets with caps on at 22:30:37:
«A New Welcome: Activists Launch Home Placement Service For Refugees In Germany And Austria News Change Help»
On August 29 at 11.02PMa group of 80 netbots posts the following:
«Thousands Welcome Refugees to Germany at Dresden Rally: Thousands of people took to the streets of the German city of Dresden on Satu…»
Another group of fifty netbots from Australia (all created on Feb 14, 2014 between 06:02:00 до 06:24:00AM) publish a post on Aug 31 at 17:26:08:
«hot Football Fans in Germany Unite with ‘Refugees Welcome’ Message prebreak best»
On Sept 1 at 07:29AM 95 netbots owned by Media for Social and Cultural Impact, Dallas, Texas, USA publish the following tweets:
«German Soccer Fans Welcome Refugees Amid Ongoing Crisis: As Europe faces the challenge of a wave of migration…»
Needless to say that every original tweet was multiplied in dozens of copies and spreaded Twitter-wide.
Evidently, the logic behind this campaign is to deteriorate social situation in Germany and undermine its economic development. Another target is the social structure of German society. 1 million of refugees coming annually there and supplementing existing 31% of local families having underage kids and at least one migrant parent, would definitely disbalance the voting structure and secure a loyal leadership in Germany for the decades to come. On the other hand that would instigate ultra-right sentiments within the indigenous population and cause furious clashes between migrants and German radicals. Both processes would result in weakened Germany and diminished EU.
That is the real agenda behind innocent tweeting…
“Strategic Engineered Migration as a Weapon of War”
Journal Article, Civil Wars, volume 10, issue 1, pages 6-21
Author: Kelly M. Greenhill, Research Fellow, International Security Program
Belfer Center Programs or Projects: International Security; Intrastate Conflict Program
Managing Europe’s Perfect Storm
Richard N. Haass
President of the Council on Foreign Relations, previously served as Director of Policy Planning for the US State Department (2001-2003), and was President George W. Bush’s special envoy to Northern Ireland and Coordinator for the Future of Afghanistan.
Early life and education
Sunstein was born on September 21, 1954 in Concord, Massachusetts to Marian (née Goodrich), a teacher, and Cass Richard Sunstein, a builder, both Jewish. He graduated in 1972 from Middlesex School and in 1975 with a B.A. from Harvard College, where he was a member of the varsity squash team and the Harvard Lampoon. In 1978, Sunstein received a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was executive editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review and part of a winning team of the Ames Moot Court Competition. He served as a law clerk first for Justice Benjamin Kaplan of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (1978–1979) and later for Justice Thurgood Marshall of the United States Supreme Court (1979–1980).
Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness is a book written by University of Chicago economist Richard H. Thaler and Harvard Law School Professor Cass R. Sunstein.
The book draws on research in psychology and behavioral economics to defend libertarian paternalism and active engineering of choice architecture.
The book received largely positive reviews. The Guardian described it as “never intimidating, always amusing and elucidating: a jolly economic romp but with serious lessons within.” It was named one of the best books of 2008 by The Economist.
One of the main justifications for Thaler’s and Sunstein’s endorsement of libertarian paternalism in Nudge draws on facts of human nature and psychology. The book is critical of the homo economicus view of human beings “that each of us thinks and chooses unfailingly well, and thus fits within the textbook picture of human beings offered by economists.”
They cite many examples of research which raise “serious questions about the rationality of many judgments and decisions that people make”. They state that, unlike members of homo economicus, members of the species homo sapiens make predictable mistakes because of their use of heuristics, fallacies, and because of the way they are influenced by their social interactions.
Two systems of thinking
The book describes two systems that characterize human thinking, which Sunstein and Thaler refer to as the “Reflective System” and the “Automatic System”. These two systems are more thoroughly defined in Daniel Kahneman’s book Thinking, Fast and Slow.
The Automatic System is “rapid and is or feels instinctive, and it does not involve what we usually associate with the word thinking”. Instances of the Automatic System at work include smiling upon seeing a puppy, getting nervous while experiencing air turbulence, and ducking when a ball is thrown at you.
The Reflective System is deliberate and self-conscious. It is the one at work when people decide which college to attend, where to go on trips, and (under most circumstances) whether or not to get married.
Weapons of Mass Migration: Forced Displacement, Coercion, and Foreign Policy (Cornell Studies in Security Affairs) 1st Edition
At first glance, the U.S. decision to escalate the war in Vietnam in the mid-1960s, China’s position on North Korea’s nuclear program in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and the EU resolution to lift what remained of the arms embargo against Libya in the mid-2000s would appear to share little in common. Yet each of these seemingly unconnected and far-reaching foreign policy decisions resulted at least in part from the exercise of a unique kind of coercion, one predicated on the intentional creation, manipulation, and exploitation of real or threatened mass population movements.
In Weapons of Mass Migration, Kelly M. Greenhill offers the first systematic examination of this widely deployed but largely unrecognized instrument of state influence. She shows both how often this unorthodox brand of coercion has been attempted (more than fifty times in the last half century) and how successful it has been (well over half the time). She also tackles the questions of who employs this policy tool, to what ends, and how and why it ever works. Coercers aim to affect target states’ behavior by exploiting the existence of competing political interests and groups, Greenhill argues, and by manipulating the costs or risks imposed on target state populations.
This “coercion by punishment” strategy can be effected in two ways: the first relies on straightforward threats to overwhelm a target’s capacity to accommodate a refugee or migrant influx; the second, on a kind of norms-enhanced political blackmail that exploits the existence of legal and normative commitments to those fleeing violence, persecution, or privation. The theory is further illustrated and tested in a variety of case studies from Europe, East Asia, and North America. To help potential targets better respond to―and protect themselves against―this kind of unconventional predation, Weapons of Mass Migration also offers practicable policy recommendations for scholars, government officials, and anyone concerned about the true victims of this kind of coercion―the displaced themselves.
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