Tolstoy's novel Anna Karenina begins: "All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." Could this line from the author of “War and Peace” also apply to war? That is the topic of this episode of the Ancient Art of Modern Warfare.
Prior episodes described what Quasi-mercenary forces are, what they do, how they get their support, and who controls them. The big question is what – if anything -- we can do about them? I am joined by Dr. Deborah Avant of the University of Denver, Dr. Sorcha McLeod of the UN Working Group on Mercenaries, and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Mr. Gary Motsek
Who commands or controls modern mercenary activity? Who really calls the shots for the Wagner Group or other mercenary organizations? Accountability depends not just on knowing who, but being able to prove it.
Moving from what mercenary-like organization are and where they operate, we need to know how today’s mercenary-like activities threaten peace and security in Africa, the Middle East, and even Europe? How do they threaten the vital interests of the United States, in particular, and Western interests in general? In other words, why should we care?
Why do governments choose to use mercenaries rather than their own armed forces or those of partner national armies or international organizations? More important, why do some governments invite mercenaries into their countries? The answers may surprise you.
In Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East, new reports emerge of mercenary-like activity. Why do governments seek help from mercenaries? How can some governments and even media consider them a force for good? This episode begins a series on that subject.
Current movements to cancel certain historical persons risks cancelling our history, leaving us without a map of our past and guidance for our future. We should not ignore the importance of historical persons' thoughts and achievements, nor the faults which made them human.