Archive

The Strategic Civilian: Challenges for Non-Combatants in 21st Century Warfare

Abstract The notion of the ‘Strategic Corporal’ in conflict is a necessary, but not sufficient concept. This idea recognises what we have long known. Effective operational outcomes rely on having good leaders at every level who know what they are doing. Military leadership, whether it is of an army or an infantry section, is something that we recognize easily. However, we must recognize, and make better preparations for the fact that we are already deploying civilians into conditions of modern warfare. These ‘complex’ operations range from counter-insurgency, stabilisation and reconstruction to peacebuilding, where even relatively junior officials and non-government organization representatives are making decisions with long-term strategic ramifications. Even short of conflict, overseas deployments will involve military and civilians working together in humanitarian relief and disaster response. Natural disasters are often as politicised as warfare, the main distinction being that while the military will lead in combat operations, in virtually every other circumstance the military only supports the civil lead. Yet while our analysis of military leadership requirements is highly developed, our appreciation of the civilian leadership requirements for complex operations hardly exists. We need to develop a concept of the ‘Strategic Civilian’. Downloads View this document on Academia.edu

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Working paper: ‘No better friend, no worse enemy: How different organisational cultures impede and enhance Australia’s whole-of-government approach’

Abstract Since 1999, Australia has increasingly deployed the military in joint, combined, interagency environments as part of a ‘whole-of-government’ approach. Despite some successes, a number of barriers between the contributing agencies continue to interfere with attempts to synchronise disparate elements of national power into a unified national effort. This paper examines these barriers through the lens of Australian operations in Timor-Leste, the Solomon Islands and Afghanistan to determine how these barriers can be overcome and strives to broaden institutional perspective for members of the civil-military-police community. It concludes that incompatible organisational culture is the most significant impediment to Australia’s whole-of-government approach but argues that some differences in organisational culture provide the whole-of-government approach with its greatest strength. Differences in organisational perspective offer diversity in thinking, challenges the status quo, prevents groupthink and leads to superior outcomes. By raising awareness of the advantages and disadvantages of different organisational cultures in interagency operations, practitioners and planners will be better placed to overcome the impediment of different organisational cultures and instead leverage them to better synchronise the application of the national power. The author Lieutenant Colonel Mark Smith is an Army Reserve Infantry officer with over 20 years’ service. The views expressed here…

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Australian Guidelines for the Protection of Civilians

Abstract The Australian Guidelines for the Protection of Civilians (the Guidelines) provide a whole-of-government perspective on the Protection of Civilians (POC) in international situations of armed conflict and other situations of violence. The Guidelines are the product of extensive consultation, facilitated by the Australian Civil-Military Centre, and includes broad representation of Australian government and non-government organisations. In contemporary conflicts civilians are increasingly the targets of systematic and opportunistic violence, including indiscriminate or disproportionate attacks, sexual and gender-based violence and other violations of international law. This situation continues despite the existing protections provided by international humanitarian and human rights law. Clearly, more needs to be done. These Guidelines help identify who has responsibility and what needs to be done when protection of civilians is an issue. They place support for the rule of law at the centre of Australian operational responses. While focusing on operations involving the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and the Australian Federal Police (AFP), they also build a shared understanding of POC across the full range of government departments and agencies that will contribute to an offshore operation. The Guidelines provide guidance on how to implement Australia’s POC focus areas: Protection through dialogue and engagement Provision of physical…

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Skills for Multiagency Responses to International Crises

Abstract Australian responses to international, complex emergencies and humanitarian crises, generated by natural disaster, conflicts or incidents, demand the coordinated responses of multiple civil-military-police actors and agencies. A scoping study of Australian government agency training needs in the latter half of 2013 indicated that stakeholder agencies continue to have difficulty in identifying and developing individual skills to enable people to operate effectively in a high-pressure crisis environment that requires an integrated civil-military-police response. Agencies highlighted the need to develop a ‘whole-of-government’ set of skills for civil-military-police interaction that would complement agency specific skills. In 2015, the Australian Civil-Military Centre (ACMC) commissioned Sustineo to undertake a project to address this gap. This report, based on Sustineo’s research and consultations, goes some way to identifying the skills needed for effective civil-military-police interaction. However, the list is not exhaustive. In fact, the report highlights the difficulty of articulating a specific set of multiagency, cross-cutting skills for civil-military-police interaction. Practitioners gave consistent advice that specific skills were less important than other factors in successful civil-military-police interaction. Skills and training are only one component of success. The factors that can facilitate and enhance civil-military-police interaction and the strategies required to address those factors are much…

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Australian Government Guiding Principles for Civil-Military-Police Interaction in International Disaster and Conflict Management

Abstract The Australian Government’s Guiding Principles for Civil-Military-Police Interaction in International Disaster and Conflict Management (the Guiding Principles) has been developed by the Australian Civil-Military Centre (ACMC) in collaboration with the Departments of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C), Defence (ADF), Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), Attorney-General’s (AGD), Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID). The Departments of Treasury and Immigration have also reviewed and contributed to the Guiding Principles. The Guiding Principles outline five strategic principles, agreed at working and senior levels across government, to inform policy and planning for international disaster and conflict management. The Guiding Principles does not seek to replace current multiagency or single agency documents and policies. It aims to provide common strategic imperatives to improve the effectiveness of whole-of-government collaboration in a multiagency environment. The Guiding Principles is designed to build on the unique capabilities of all stakeholders. The agreed principles are: • Clearly define strategic objectives and operational roles and responsibilities • Engage proactively • Share knowledge and understanding • Leverage organisational diversity • Commit to continuous improvement The Guiding Principles is intended for policy makers and a range of stakeholders engaged in disaster and conflict response. They…

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Same Space Different Mandates International Edition

Abstract In response to overseas natural or manmade disasters and complex emergencies, defence forces, police, government agencies and the aid community often find themselves operating in the same physical space as one another. Unfortunately, a lack of understanding and confusion over stakeholder roles, responsibilities, cultures and terminologies can impede communication and coherency in program implementation, leading to reduced effectiveness in meeting the needs of the host population. Issues such as humanitarian space shrinking due to restrictions on humanitarian access; perceptions regarding subordination of humanitarian principles; the tensions that arise between political, humanitarian and military objectives within integrated multiagency stabilisation efforts; and the increase in the number of organisations and individuals operating in these environments all serve to add a degree of confusion and potential for discord. However, experience has shown that improved mutual understanding of the roles, mandates, principles, cultures and objectives of the various civil-military stakeholders enhances constructive engagement, dialogue and communication prior to and during deployments. With this dialogue and communication comes greater opportunity to achieve maximum benefits for people and nations affected by natural disasters and conflict. The Australian Civil-Military Centre and the Australian Council for International Development have developed this document, Same Space– Different Mandates: International…

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Civil-Military Occasional Paper 2-2014 – The Links Between Security Sector Reform and Development

Abstract This paper explores the relationship between security and development, with a focus on how different types of violence inhibit development in fragile and conflict-affected states. This paper is based upon a comprehensive literature review of separate pieces of research including academic studies, datasets and policy analysis. It explores statistics and figures that illustrate the barriers that insecurity poses to achieving development outcomes in fragile and conflict-afflicted states. It also examines these dynamics in detail in four countries: Afghanistan, Solomon Islands, South Sudan and Timor-Leste. The assignment was not to come up with policy recommendations per se; rather it was to present a comprehensive synopsis of how different types of violence shackles and inhibits development in fragile and conflict-affected states. The research team believes that the material presented will be of use to inform policy debate and development, including in the field of security sector reform. The analysis is contextualised by focusing on three types of violence: political, criminal and interpersonal. The barriers these different types of violence pose to development is presented throughout the report, and embedded in the country case studies. The statistics uncovered in the course of the project are stark and unnerving. These statistics, among others,…

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Women, Peace and Security: An Introductory Manual

Abstract As part of our responsibilities under Australia’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security, the ACMC has funded and provided technical subject matter expertise for the Women, Peace and Security: An Introductory Manual, launched today by the Chief of the Defence Force General David Hurley and Ms Julie McKay, Executive Director UN Women and Gender Adviser to CDF. The ACMC and the Australian National Committee for UN Women have worked together to develop and publish a Women, Peace and Security training manual. The purpose of the manual is to increase understanding in the Australian Defence Force of Australia’s commitment to and engagement with UNSCR 1325 (including through the National Action Plan) and the broader Women, Peace and Security agenda. The Women, Peace and Security training manual will be used as a general reference guide for training sessions with civil and military audiences and will form part of the training package that Defence is developing on Women, Peace and Security. Link to the Opening Address by the Minister for Defence –  Defence Women in Peace and Security Conference Downloads View this publication on Academia.edu

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Civil-Military Occasional Paper 1-2014 – Conflict-related Sexual and Gender-based Violence

Abstract Sexual and gender-based violence is widespread in conflict-affected environments. The field of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence is active and constantly expanding. Recent research and analysis are drawing attention to the complexity of this form of violence, reflecting a shift away from simplified narratives. They also point to the need for a more inclusive understanding of sexual violence, which acknowledges, for example, male victims and survivors, as well as the experiences and motivations of perpetrators. The wealth of information, activity and debate that characterises this field can be daunting. This paper offers an introductory overview of conflict- related sexual and gender-based violence, in particular for those who are beginning their involvement with the subject—whether they are civilian, military or police. It examines a number of dominant patterns of sexual and gender-based violence in conflict-affected environments. It surveys a range of causes and motivations that can contribute to the perpetration of this form of violence, and explores persistent gaps and weaknesses in current efforts to deal with such violence. Throughout the report, where relevant, information is provided about what is being done to prevent and respond to conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence, with a sampling of efforts from the international,…

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Civil-Military Working Paper 3-2013 – A Strategic Framework for Mass Atrocity Prevention

Abstract At the 2005 World Summit of the United Nations, more than 170 Heads of State and Government accepted three interlinked responsibilities, which together constitute the principle of ‘responsibility to protect’ (R2P). First, States accepted their primary responsibility to protect their own population from mass atrocity crimes. Second, they pledged to assist each other in fulfilling their domestic protection responsibilities. And finally, as members of the international community, they assumed the collective responsibility to react, in a timely and decisive manner, if any State were ‘manifestly failing’ to protect its population from mass atrocity crimes. Those three responsibilities are now commonly summarised in the language of R2P’s ‘three pillars’. Among the key constitutive elements of the principle of R2P, prevention has been deemed by many as the single most important. Scholars and policy-makers alike concede that it is both normatively and politically desirable to act early to prevent mass atrocity crimes from being committed—rather than to react after they are already underway. Yet, while the more general topic of conflict prevention has been—and continues to be—a subject of explicit discussion by policy-makers, an important field of inquiry for academics, and a crucial area of advocacy for civil society groups, there…

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