This Week in War. A Friday round-up of what happened and what’s been written in the world of war and military/security affairs this week. It’s a mix of news reports, policy briefs, blog posts and longform journalism. Subscribe here to receive this round-up by email.
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- The UN unanimously approved a 12,000-strong UN peacekeeping force in the Central African Republic.
- It’s now been 20 years since the genocide in Rwanda — here, Tutsi survivors pose with Hutus who victimized them, and with whom they’ve since reconciled.
- Colum Lynch reports a three-part series on the UN peacekeeping failure in Darfur: 1, 2, 3.
- Doctors Without Borders accused the UN of ignoring horrible living conditions of 21,000 South Sudanese using part of the peacekeeping base in Juba as a refugee camp.
- Clashes in Nigeria between Fulani cattle rustlers and Hausa vigilantes left 72 dead last Monday.
- Two anti-piracy consultants for the UN were shot and killed in Galkayo, Somalia.
- Abdel-Rahman Shaheen is the latest Al Jazeera journalist to be arrested in Egypt.
- Infighting among Islamic rebel groups in Syria leaves 51 dead.
- Drought looms in Syria.
- American anti-tank weaponry shows up in Syrian rebel hands.
- Dutch Jesuit priest Frans van der Lugt, who refused to evacuate Syria, where he lived for decades, was assassinated by a gunman outside his home in Homs.
- Netanyahu ordered his cabinet to cut communications with their Palestinian counterparts after Palestine requested to sign on to 15 international conventions.
- Iran’s Revolutionary Guard say they have captured a number of foreign agents entering from Iraq with intentions to carry out bombings and assassinations.
- Iran named Hamid Aboutalebi as its UN envoy — a provocative choice because Aboutalebi was a member of the student group who held Americans hostage in 1979 (although he was not himself directly involved in the event).
- As last weekend’s votes in Afghanistan continue to be tallied, Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah appear to be competing for the lead. A record number — 7 million people — turned out to vote.
- The Afghan government has begun an investigation into why a security officer, now in custody, killed AP photographer Anja Niedringhaus and wounded reporter Kathy Gannon.
- A bomb on a stationary train in western Pakistan killed 14 on Tuesday.
- 22 were killed in a blast in Islamabad on Wednesday.
- Pakistan plans to release 13 Taliban prisoners as part of peace negotiations.
- A new art project in Pakistan gives a face to civilian drone strike victims.
- The Pakistani Taliban launched a website (link is to a news report, not to the actual website).
- A Marine shot and killed another Marine at Camp Lejeune on Tuesday afternoon at the base’s main gate.
- Mexican self-defense groups refuse to disarm.
- Pro-Russian violence leaks into Eastern Ukraine.
- An infographic on Eastern Ukrainian separatist movements.
- The Washington Post on the special relationship between special operations and the FBI.
- Britain is increasing exercising its power to strip citizenship from suspected terrorists without prior court involvement — and then, of course, some of them end up getting killed in drone strikes.
- The US is three years behind in the reports it is by law supposed to issue on potential sanctions violators.
- FBI investigation shows that Russia failed to provide some critical intelligence to the US about Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
- Lawyers for Guantánamo prisoner Shaker Aamer are seeking his release on the grounds of failing health.
- Alan Gross, the US contractor imprisoned in Cuba for the past four years, has gone on hunger strike.
- According to further Snowden leaks, the US spied on groups like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International (not particularly surprising, given historical record here).
- Popular Mechanics rounds up a couple of military escalations you haven’t been hearing about.
- Roughly 5% ($500m) of the US defense budget will be spent developing electronic warfare systems.
- A Microsoft researcher makes the case that increased use of encryption inside intelligence agencies could rein in surveillance.
- What you need to know about Heartbleed.
- Hayden, the former CIA director, gets a bit sexist in his/the agency’s feud with Sen. Feinstein.
- A really awesome new invention for plugging battlefield wounds extra effectively gets FDA approval.
- The Secret Service implements some internal clean-up efforts.
- Any NYC veterans reading the round-up: here are some events for free legal assistance at the end of April/beginning of May.
- Some of things you shouldn’t say to returning veterans — and some of the things you should.
- Alex Horton eloquently rejects the post-traumatic stress narrative in the second Fort Hood shooting.
Photo: Zawa, Central African Republic. Anti-balaka military patrol. Goran Tomasevic/Reuters.