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biggest headache will center on secu-
rity. “Security is going to be the para-
mount issue for the State Depart-
ment, and it is very hard to plan for,”
Stephanie Sanok, a former State De-
partment official in Iraq now at the
Center for Strategic and International
Studies, tells Reuters. According to
Under Secretary Kennedy, the security
contractors under the command of
Diplomatic Security Bureau agents
will be under orders to engage in de-
fensive maneuvers only.
Some analysts are concerned that
reliance on private security contractors
is by itself a problem. As Charles
Tiefer, a former member of the Com-
mission onWartime Contracting and a
law professor at the University of Bal-
timore, points out to Reuters, the Pen-
tagon long resisted the use of con-
tractors as a quick-reaction force “be-
cause it’s a kind of combat.”
One need only recall the 2007 inci-
dent in which five security guards em-
ployed by Blackwater Worldwide were
F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 2 / F O R E I G N S E R V I C E J O U R N A L
The Center for International Policy
aims to facilitate the
debate about U.S. foreign policy and, more specifically, U.S. national security
policy through its Rethinking National Security blog and other projects. As the
blog’s main contributors — retired FSOs Harry C. Blaney III, Wayne Smith and
Robert White, Johns Hopkins University Adjunct Professor Melvin A. Goodman,
and noted journalist and author Selig S. Harrison — declare:
“We believe that there has long been a significant disparity between our es-
poused national values and goals and our continued policies and funding for out-
moded defense programs. It is now widely acknowledged that, for too long, the
United States has put a myopic emphasis on expensive, unworkable and inap-
propriate defense programs and strategy, at the expense of more effective and
appropriate foreign policy and diplomacy tools. The moment is now right to cre-
ate a more appropriate balance of our diplomacy, intelligence and defense struc-
tures and programs for the ever-changing landscape of the 21st century.”
Toward that end, Rethinking National Security offers a wide range of com-
mentaries by these distinguished experts and guest contributors. Recent post-
ings include: “The China-America Confrontation Syndrome,” “Turkey, the E.U.
and — Oh, Yes — Cyprus,” “The Crisis of Governance in America and in Eu-
rope,” “The Battle over Defense Cuts: Will Realists or Lobbyists Win the Debate?”
and “Kissinger, Afghanistan and Regional Policy.”
Founded in 1975, in the wake of the Vietnam War, by former diplomats and
peace activists, the Center for International Policy is a nonprofit research and ad-
vocacy organization based in Washington, D.C. It promotes transparency and ac-
countability in U.S. foreign policy, while advocating international cooperation,
demilitarization and respect for human rights. It places special emphasis on
crafting policy recommendations and analysis for decision-makers in govern-
ment, the private sector and civil society.
— Steven Alan Honley, Editor