Monthly Archives: April 2008

Politics 2.0 Conference: Social Network Analysis

“The Politics of Blogging” is the first panel I am bloggling live from at the Politics 2.0 conference in London. In what reflects an increasing interest in applying social network analysis (SNA) to blogosphere dynamics, two of the three papers applied SNA to political blogs in South Korea and Greece. See my previous blog on mapping the persion blogosphere here.

The first presentation was entitled “Social Network Analysis of Ideological Landscapes from the Political Blogosphere: The Case of South Korea.” The presenter argued that South Korea provides an ideal case study for network analysis. The country has seen important grassroots activities prior to the arrival of the Internet; there have been periods of demonstrations, student and worker revolutions/protests. South Korea also has the highest proportion of broadband users in the world. The analysis drew on the 115 blogs of the country’s 219 assembly members and their blog rolls.

The result of the analysis presented an interesting contrast to the results of SNA studies carried out on Republicans and Democrats in the US. South Korea’s political blogosphere was far less polarized. In fact, a substantial number of blogs linked to both the political-right and center parties. The main drawback of the study is the lack of statistical analysis applied to the network map, let alone any statistical analysis of dynamics and trends over time.

The presentation on the Greek political blogosphere applied standard SNA metrics to teethe out some of the underlying structures of the network. The case study focused specifically on the recent debate that took place on the Web with respect to the presidential elections for the Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK).

What I appreciate about this paper is the application of statistical analysis to the network map. Indeed,one reason for using mathematical and graphical techniques in social network analysis is to represent the descriptions of networks compactly and systematically. A related reason for using formal methods for representing social networks is that mathematical representations allow us to use software programs to analyze the network data. The third, and final reason for using mathematics and graphs for representing social network data is that the techniques of graphing and the rules of mathematics themselves suggest properties that we might look for in our networked data—features that might not have occurred to us if we presented our data using descriptions in words. These reasons are articulated by Hanneman and Riddle here.

Another reason I liked the paper is that the authors tied their analysis to the existing literature, e.g., Drezner and Farrel’s paper on the power and politics of blogs. Disclaimer: Professor Daniel Drezner is the chair of my dissertation committee. One of the interesting points that came out of the Q & A was the suggestion of studying negative links, i.e., those bloggers who tell others not to look at certain blogs. I had the last comment of the Q & A session in which I relayed to the panelists Berkman’s recent study on the Iranian blogosphere. My recommendations to the panelists were the same I gave to a colleague of mine at Berkman. These are included in my previous blog on Berkman’s work.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Politics 2.0 Conference: Keynote Speakers

I am in London this week blogging live from Politics 2.0: An International Conference.

The conference kicked off with two Keynote speakers:

  • Robin Mansell: Head of Department of Media and Communications at LSE and co-Director of PhD program;
  • Helen Margetts: Professor of Society and Internet at the Oll.

Looking at the other keynote speakers lined up for the rest of the conference, it’s really refreshing to have panels that are far more gender balanced than the majority of conferences I’ve been to.

Professor Mansell introduce her presentation on “The Light and Dark Side of Web 2.0″ but asking what Marx would say about the social web. User-generated contend means that the user/citizen is now co-producer, and co-owner of the means of production. The flip side, however, is that the information generated is less trustworthy and risk avoidance more prevalent among participants.

Professor Mansell also noted that historically, shifts in power have been partial and often local, in their consequences; we should expect the same in the Web 2.0 age. Scarce resources in this age include data/information management capabilities and time. In other words, actors seek control of difficult to replicate assets. In conclusion, Professor Mansell emphasized the need for further empirical. When asked what areas needed the most intention, she replied that the impact of Web 2.0 on human rights had the most pressing need for empirical study. To this send, see my blog entries on Human Rights 2.0 here and here.

I need to run to the next panel on social network analysis of blogospheres but just wanted to note one of Professor Margetts concluding points: “Ignore young people at your own peril.” This point is worth emphasizing since those adopting the latest distributed, decentralized and mobile ICTs are young people. Given that quantitative studies in the political science literature on civil wars argue that youth bulges potentially increase both opportunities and motives for political violence. Will the increasingly rapid diffusion of ICTs dampen this potentiality? Will the ICTs mediate tensions towards more nonviolent action?

Patrick Philippe Meier

The Economist and NYT on Mobile Phones

The New York Times asks “Can the Cellphone Help End Global Poverty?” while The Economist asks what happens “When Everybody Becomes a Nomadic Monitor”? The two articles provide interesting insights into future iRevolutions.

The trend towards “human-centered design” as identified in the NYT article has important implications for iRevolutions (see my previous blog on people-centered conflict early warning). Technology companies initially catered their designs to large firms and organizations. Indeed, the name IBM says it all: International Business Machines. The information communication technologies (ICTs) of the time necessarily took on “institution-centered designs” since they sought to enhance existing institutional processes.

Today, however, the final frontier for mobile companies is the 3 billion people who don’t own mobile phones, yet. The profit potential is astronomical. Indeed, “people in the mobile-handset business talk about adding customers not by the millions but by the billions.” (NYT).

According to statistics from the market database Wireless Intelligence, it took about 20 years for the first billion mobile phones to sell worldwide. The second billion sold in four years, and the third billion sold in two. Eighty percent of the world’s population now lives within range of a cellular network, which is double the level in 2000 (NYT).

One of the last barriers remains that of price. Not to worry though, where there is profit to be made, competition oft follows. Nokia, Vodafone and the new kid on the block, Spice Limited, are entangled in a tight race to tap into the multi-billion dollar potential. Spice Limited recently announced plans to roll out a $20 mobile phone and there’s even talk of a $5 phone on the horizon. Meanwhile, a new study cited by the NYT found that “even very poor families invested a significant amount of money in the I.C.T. category.”

So what are the implications for future iRevolutions? Are we likely to see more spontaneous organization and just-in-time mobilization of political protests and social resistance? Or will repressive regimes gain the upper hand? In her interview with The Economist, Katrin Verclas of MobileActive sums up her views:

Like every other technology human beings have ever invented [...] the tools of nomadism arm both sides in the eternal tug-of-war between good and evil. But there is room for optimism, she thinks, because the side with good intentions is more numerous and—so far, at least—has proved more imaginative.

Is this indeed the case? That is the question and subject of my dissertation—and I don’t have an answer yet. Whether these ICTs are made for activism and whether that’s just what they’ll do remains for now an open-ended question. As Karl Popper noted in “The Poverty of Historicism”, we can’t predict the future precisely because technological breakthroughs are inherently unpredictable.

At the moment, the latest empirical study on state censorship by the Berkman Center suggests repressive regimes remain in control of the information revolution. On the other hand, The Economist suggests that mobile phones lend themselves to more mobile activisim since “nomadic technology can expose human-rights abuses as honest citizens use technology to monitor and expose crimes and co-ordinate the response.” To be sure, ICTs today are increasingly distributed, decentralized and mobile—three characteristics that certainly do not describe repressive regimes.

(Incidentally, the use of the term nomadic is particularly apt. I was in the Western Sahara some five years ago doing field research on the conflict between the POLISARIO and the Moroccan Monarchy. I happened upon a Sahraoui Sheikh, who would delight in telling me, repeatedly, that mobile phones were made especially for nomads).

At the same time, however, repressive regimes have shown guile and aptitude in their ability to monitor and censor information. They continue to mount “information blockades” rendering “data smuggling” at times more challenging. So how significant is it that those with good intentions are more numerous? How important is imagination and tactical innovation? What other factors might determine the winner of the tug-of-war? Stay tuned, I’ll be frequently blogging about my findings as I pursue my dissertation over the next two years.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Escape from Fallujah: Survival and Technology

Who are the most targeted Iraqis? Who among the millions of displaced Iraqis are actively sought out for assassination? They are none other than those who served as interpreters for the US armed forces, as civil society experts for the State Department and USAID, or those employed with the many US companies and NGOs contracted to rebuild the country. They are the most hunted class of Iraqis in the war-torn country. So what is the US government doing to thank them for their services? Nothing.

In December 2006, Kirk Johnson received an email from a former Iraqi colleague he had worked with on a USAID project in Fallujah the previous year. His colleague had just received this death threat:

He had found the note on his front steps pinned to the severed head of a dog. The note reads: “Your head will be next.” When the Iraqi employee reported this to USAID, the Agency simply gave him one month of paid leave and then hired someone else, effectively firing him. Thanks Uncle Sam. So he and his wife packed what they could and fled Iraq, and this after years of service to the US.

I Just had dinner with Kirk Johnson who was recounting the story. He gravely feared for his colleague’s life and was at a loss about how to help. In desperation, he submitted an Op-Ed to the LA Times in the hopes of raising awareness about his colleague’s fate. Soon thereafter, Kirk began hearing from many other Iraqis enduring similar ordeals. His Op-Ed had been widely circulated by these Iraqis and they began to seek his help. His phone started ringing several times a day, and soon several times an hour. He also received numerous text messages from Iraqis fearing for their lives. Indeed, his phone rang several times during our dinner.

Again, he was at a loss about what to do. So he just started a spreadsheet and kept updating the list of Iraqis who made contact with him. Having been one of the only Arabic speaking employees on the USAID project, Kirk had made many Iraqi friends. So he searched for them, using email, phone and SMS. Several weeks later, the list had grown significantly and he had accounted for all his former colleagues. He then took the list to the State Department. His efforts were not well received by State but they nevertheless committed to referring the list to UNHCR for priority processing. When other Iraqis learned of Kirk’s list, he received even more emails and text messages. His efforts were recently featured on Anderson Cooper 360

What I find stunning is that this Youtube video has only been viewed 155 times (!)

Kirk Johnson‘s list grew by the hundreds and he now has some 1,000 individuals on his list. Each person on this list continues to fear for their life on a daily basis. Kirk wanted to find a way to expedite the refugee asylum process, which often takes up to a year for any given individual. So he set up the The List Project.

This initiative partners with law firms in an unprecedented effort to provide pro bono legal services for hundreds of Iraqis who worked with allies now seeking refuge in the US. The law firms involved, Holland & Knight LLP and Proskauer Rose LLP, are also using ICTs to their advantage. They set up an Intranet between the two firms so that the 100 attorneys working on The List Project can share information on effective strategies and communicate their lessons learned. A DVD has also been made to train attorneys who seek to volunteer their time to saving Iraqi lives.

Together, the firms have committed thousands of hours of pro bono work to help US-affiliated Iraqis navigate the labyrinthine resettlement process. To date, they have successfully represented the cases of more than 80 Iraqis and their families who now live in peace in America. This number includes Kirk’s colleague who had first contacted him. He and his wife are now safe.

Kirk has received funding from several anonymous donors which has enabled him to hire three of the Iraqis he helped resettle to the US. The team continues to use email, phone, SMS and also instant messaging to communicate with hundreds of Iraqis who remain the main target for insurgents. The List Project is now seeking funds to support Iraqis who do make it to the US. Until recently, all the US government provided was a measly $200 for the first two month. Even more upsetting is the fact that each refugee is required to pay back the full fare of their flight ticket to the US. So much for the symbolism represented by the Statue of Liberty.

The Iraqi refugees are given low-wage jobs in factories and warehouses. At least they’re alive, right? Sure, but these refugees are well educated, they are doctors, interpreters etc., which is why Kirk and his colleagues are looking for funds specifically geared towards resettlement once they do arrive in the land of the free. It may come as a surprise that two of the Iraqis who made it to the US, subsequently returned to the region some two weeks later given the lack of support they received from the US government when they arrived.

Kirk is as humble as his story is extraordinary. While more than 80 Iraqis have been successfully resettled to the US, he is hesitant to call this success: “There are still one thousand names on that list, and the list keeps growing.” Kirk’s story will be featured on 60 Minutes in two weeks. He hopes this will raise more awareness about the plight of US-affiliated Iraqis. The feature will only be aired once since it includes interviews with Iraqis still waiting to be resettled. I highly recommend watching the piece.

In the meantime, please think about joining The List Project’s Facebook group. It is worth emphasizing that all Kirk had back in December 2006 was a mobile phone and a laptop. Technology can make the difference when used by extraordinary individuals.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Tactical Survival in El Salvador

The story of El Salvador is one that gets little attention in the mainstream media on conflict early warning and operational response. Indeed, the story surfaces instead in the sociology and nonviolence literature. The best study on countering attack in El Salvador is Barton Meyer‘s “Defense Against Aerial Attack in El Salvador” published in 1994. Brian Martin, a prolific author in the field of nonviolent action, drew on Meyer’s case study in his excellent book on “Technology for Nonviolent Struggle” published in 2001. Finally, Casey Barrs, a Senior Protection Fellow, who has carried out substantial research in civilian protection, brought the story to my attention in 2006.

From Martin:

To survive bombing from El Salvador’s air force, both civilians and guerrillas developed and used a range of methods. No sophisticated warning systems were available, so people had to develop their own skills in detecting and identifying aircraft. When spotter planes were seen, people froze in place so they wouldn’t be seen; any moving target was subject to attack. When the spotter plane changed course, people would seek shelter, sometimes setting off a firecracker to warn others.

Concealment was widely used. Leafy trees were grown next to houses to hide them. Houses that were partly destroyed were left unrepaired to hide the fact that they were still being lived in. At the sound of aircraft, fires were quickly doused; alternatively, underground ovens were used with long tunnels to absorb smoke. Radio transmissions were not used by guerrillas to avoid being intercepted. Peasants wore dark clothing to avoid detection. They grew crops whose colour was not readily noticeable from the air and crops that were hidden by other plants.

Shelters were built and disguised. Natural features, such as forests and ravines, were also used for shelter. Guerrillas built extensive tunnel systems. In areas subject to frequent attack, shelter drills were carried out. When the government army invaded following air attack, guerrillas often would lead an evacuation of the
population, returning later.

The guerrillas, in the face of heavy air attack, dispersed their forces to groups of 4 to 15 fighters spread out over hundreds of meters. Larger units would have been more vulnerable to air power. The dispersed fighters were concentrated only for attacks or briefly at night. Another tactic was to deploy the guerrillas very near to government troops, where aerial attack might harm the government’s own soldiers.

As well as methods of surviving attack, other techniques of struggle were used, such as broadcasting reports of deaths or injuries of civilians due to air attack. Such human rights appeals were highly effective, and would be even more so in the context of a purely nonviolent resistance.

There is a great need for many more studies like that of Meyers, as well as a need to circulate the findings to people who can use them. Unfortunately, the contemporary field of disaster studies has neglected the study of war as a disaster. One factor behind this may be that most war disasters occur in poor countries whereas disaster studies are largely carried out in the rich countries which sponsor and provide weapons for these wars.

As well as knowing how to respond to aerial attack, there are many other areas in need of investigation, including firearms, landmines, biological agents, chemical weapons and nuclear weapons. A first step would be to provide basic technical information that is accessible to nonspecialists and which can be used to provide a realistic assessment of dangers and possibly to expose uses of the weapons.

My iRevolution question: some 14 years later, how can at-risk communities today use ICTs to get out of harm’s way? Conflict prevention can no longer afford to be a non cross-disciplinary effort. We in the conflict early warning community have much to learn from lessons learned in nonviolent action and tactical survival. For more examples of survival tactics in conflict, please see my previous blog entry and this piece by Casey Barrs.

Patrick Philippe Meier

ISCRAM Summer School 2008

Call for PhD Student Applications

ISCRAM‘s 3rd International Summer School
June 18-26, 2008, the Netherlands


Information Systems
for Grassroots Emergency Preparedness and Response

Apply by: April 25, 2008

I will be participating in this program and highly recommend others apply as well. There will be a stimulating mix of scholars and practitioners from different disciplines who will present on the most recent and fascinating developments in our field. To be sure, the past 12 months have seen many prominent uses of ICTs by grassroots communities. The program at the University of Tilburg gives us the opportunity to bring all this knowledge together and to push the agenda forward for 2009-2010. Unlike most of the conferences we participate, ISCRAM’s program will give use more than just a few hours or couple days to engage in rich and fruitful conversations.

The objective of the 2008 ISCRAM Summer School is to provide participants (PhD students and practitioners) with an intense interactive learning experience on the possible uses of information technology to support people in local communities in their communication, collaboration and decision making efforts when preparing for or responding to a disaster.

The number of participants is limited to 30.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Tactical Survival in Conflict

An OCHA report on “the response strategies of internally displaced people found that their information-gathering systems were often highly developed and far superior to those of the humanitarian community.” So the task at hand is not to develop new tactics for survival but rather to learn from those who have survived and perished in conflict. As a seasoned practitioner with Medecins sans Frontiers stated,

“People will continue to survive as best they can, relying more on their own communities and traditional networks than on [us] … it is not the fault of the displaced persons and refugees, but our system for providing protection and assistance that does not work. They have, after all, had to learn the hard way what it takes to survive.

Sadako Ogata and Amartya Sen echo this sentiment when they write,

“The empowerment of internally displaced persons has not received enough attention, despite the crucial role [they] play in meeting their own needs and influencing the course of conflict. In many situations internally displaced persons develop survival and coping strategies. In some, they and host communities develop self-defense units to ensure that people have time to flee.

To this end, studying and disseminating testimonies of those who survive violence can provide important insights into the numerous tried and true survival tactics. Luck may at times play a role in survival stories. But to quote the French scientist Louis Pasteur, “in the field of observation, chance favors only the prepared mind.” In any event, luck can be turned into knowledge, and knowledge into future tactics.

As Casey Barrs writes, communities in crises can learn from survival testimonies; “learn what dispersed and hidden livelihoods look like. They can be shown how they might dismantle their village homes and build temporary huts near their fields as the Vietnamese sometimes did in the face of American airpower. Or use crop colors and canopies that are less noticeable from the air, as Salvadoran peasants sometimes planted.” Understandably, “no sophisticated warning systems were available, so people had to develop their own skills in detecting and identifying aircraft.”

The following short testimonies are taken from the extensive research on civilian protection and humanitarian tactical training carried out by Casey Barrs.

East Timor, 1990s: “When we hid, we always hid in the forest. There were no more villages; the Indonesian Army had burned them all down. Each family hid by itself. We were more secure if we separated into many places in a given area, rather than all camping in one restricted area. There were a few hundred people with us altogether.”

Belorussia, 1940s: “Our camp was spread out in sections over an area of ten kilometers; special scouts would ride over the area to maintain contact between the difficult subunits … we remembered the Biblical phrase ‘should one part of the camp be attacked and overcome, the other part will remain.’ This strategy was used by our forefathers.”

Burma 1990s: “The armed opposition in Burma built early warning systems for civilians to monitor the risks of government attack. Monitoring systems can be as simple as a rotating networks of villagers taking up strategic outlook positions and sending runners to inform neighbors if troops are approaching. However, more advanced early warning systems utilize the radio transmitters of the armed opposition forces to prepare villagers for evacuation.”

El Salvador 1970s: “Salvadorans sometimes did their own preemptive migrations in order to outflank military sweeps. These defensive movements were called guindas. In groups ranging from a few dozen to as many as two or three hundred” the people hid during the day and moved at night, sometimes repeating this for a few weeks. Civilians would also set off firecrackers to warn others when they saw spotter planes. Said one observer, ‘they’re human radar, practical and self-taught; who knows how to do it, but they know that there’ s going to be a military operation.”

Uganda 1990s: “The residents of some threatened villages in Northern Uganda climb the mountainsides each night and sleep under animal hides tanned to look like rocks. Dig underground rooms for supplies and services adjunct to the encampment.”

The iRevolution question: what role can ICTs play in empowering local communities to help them get out of harm’s way?

Patrick Philippe Meier

People-Centered Conflict Early Warning

Conflict early warning works. Indeed, current and historical cases of nonviolent action may be the closest systematic examples or tactical parallels we have to people-centered disaster early warning systems. Planning, preparedness and tactical evasion, in particular, are central components of strategic nonviolence: people must be capable of concealment and dispersion. Getting out of harm’s way and preparing people for the worst effects of violence requires sound intelligence and timely strategic estimates, or situation awareness.

The literature on nonviolent action and civil resistance is rich with case studies on successful instances of early warning tactics for community empowerment. What are the characteristics of successful early warning case studies in the field of nonviolent action? Nonviolent early response uses local social networks as the organizational template of choice, in a mode different from our conventional and institutional approach to early warning. Networks have demonstrated a better ability to innovate tactically and learn from past mistakes. The incentives for members of local networks to respond early and get out of harm’s way are also incalculably higher than those at the institutional or international level since failure to do so in the former instance often means death.

Nonviolent action is non-institutional and operates outside the bounds of bureaucratic and institutionalized political channels. Nonviolent movements are locally led and managed. They draw on local meaning, culture, symbolism and history. They integrate local knowledge and the intimate familiarity with the geography and surrounding environment. They are qualitative and tactical, not quantitative and policy-oriented. Not surprisingly, successful cases of nonviolent action clearly reveal the pivotal importance of contingency planning and preparedness, actions that are particularly successful when embedded in local circumstances and local experience.

The iRevolution question is how social resistance groups can most effectively use ICTs to gain an asymmetric advantage over repressive regimes.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Conflict Early Warning Systems: No iRevolution

Convention conflict early warning systems are designed by us in the West to warn ourselves. They are about control. These systems are centralized, hierarchical, bureaucratic and ineffective. And highly academic. Indeed, the vast majority of operational conflict early warning systems are little more than fancy databases used to store, retrieve and analyze data. The rhetoric is that these systems serve to prevent violence which is rather ironic since the vast majority of local communities at risk have never heard of our impressive sounding systems.

Lessons in this field are clearly not learned. Papers published by Rupensinghe (1988) and Walker (1992) could be published tomorrow with no changes and their recommendations would still be on target. Worst of all, the indicator of success for early warning systems is still the number of high-quality analytical reports produced.

Reports don’t protect people, nor do graphs. People protect themselves and others. And yet reports still get written albeit rarely read let alone ever acted upon. To be fair, however, those working on conventional early warning systems are constrained by political and institutional realities. The best that these systems can do is to build a paper trail of analysis and recommendations. In other words, convention early warning systems can be used for advocacy and lobbying, but to assume that they are appropriate for operational response is to be misguided (see Campbell and Meier 2007). Indeed the recent study by Susanna Campbell and myself showed that decision-making structures at the UN do not use analyses generated by formal early warning systems as input into the decision-making process.

In order for conventional early warning systems to engage in operational response, they would first require the paper trail, which would then be used to lobby the UN Secretariat and other member states, these actors would then have to place political and economic pressure on offending governments and/or non-state armed groups, and the latter would have to acquiesce. Now, exactly how often has this been successful? Exactly. The above process takes years and fails repeatedly.

It is high time we learn from other communities such as disaster management. The disaster community places increasing emphasis on the importance of people-centered early warning and response systems. They define the purpose of early warning as follows:

To empower individuals and communities threatened by hazards to act in sufficient time and in an appropriate manner so as to reduce the possibility of personal injury, loss of life, damage to property and the environment, and loss of livelihoods.

The day our conflict early warning community adopts this discourse will be a good day. I hope to still be around to toast the breakthrough. Clearly, the discourse in disaster management shifts away from the conventional top-down division of labor between the “warners” and “responders” to one of individual empowerment. In disaster management, this means capacity building by training in preparedness and contingency planning. In other words, the disaster management community focuses on both forecasting hazards and mitigating their impact when they turn into disasters.

Question: Why are we in the conflict early warning community obsessed with forecasting despite our dismal track record? The disaster community is better able to forecast than we are, yet they allocate significant resources towards community-based preparedness and contingency planning programs. So when disaster does strike, the communities (who are by definition the first responders) can manage their own security environment without the immediate need for external intervention. There would be an uproar (and an escalation in disaster deaths) if the disaster community were to focus solely on prediction.

And what do we do? We work in conflict prone places and set up conflict early warning systems. When the violence escalates, we evacuate all international staff and leave the local communities behind to face the violence by themselves. How often do our conflict early warning systems fail? As often as we evacuate our staff. At the very, very least we should be preparing at-risk communities for the violence and engaging them in contingency planning so that when violence does strike, they at least have the training to get out of harm’s way and survive.

In a future blog, I will write about how some at-risk communities already do get of harm’s way, and effectively so.

Patrick Philippe Meier

Eyes on Darfur: 2 Villages Missing from Site

An update on Amnesty International’s (AI) “Eyes on Darfur” project based on my previous blog.

At least two of the protected villages monitored by AI using very-high resolution imagery provided by AAAS have been removed from the site after reported attacks in the area, with updated imagery still being processed. The attacks in question were summarized by this UNHCR Report.

This raises some important questions as noted by a colleague in a recent discussion: the bigger issue here is vital, all this geo-mapping is virtual, and while it may impact the real world that’s not a foregone conclusion; Would other NGOs, or perhaps a consortium, do better at the protective concept? And how? Namely, who can protect these villages and others like them?

I will write another blog this week on precisely these questions, i.e., civilian protection.

Patrick Philippe Meier