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Private Military & Security

Sex in Peace Operations

Citation:

Simm, Gabrielle. 2015. Sex in Peace Operations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Author: Gabrielle Simm

Annotation:

Summary: 
Gabrielle Simm's critical re-evaluation of sex between international personnel and local people examines the zero tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse and its international legal framework. Whereas most preceding studies of the issue have focused exclusively on military peacekeepers, Sex in Peace Operations also covers the private military contractors and humanitarian NGO workers who play increasingly important roles in peace operations. Informed by socio-legal studies, Simm uses three case studies (Bosnia, West Africa and the Democratic Republic of the Congo) to illustrate the extent of the problem and demonstrate that the problems of impunity for sexual crimes are not just a failure of political will but the result of the structural weaknesses of international law in addressing non-state actors. Combining the insights of feminist critique with a regulatory approach to international law, her conclusions will interest scholars of international law, peace and conflict studies, gender and sexuality, and development.(Summary from Cambridge University Press)

Topics: International Law, International Human Rights, International Organizations, Justice, War Crimes, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, NGOs, Peacekeeping, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against Women Regions: Africa, Central Africa, West Africa, Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2015

The Silenced and Indispensible

Citation:

Chisholm, Amanda. 2014. “The Silenced and Indispensible.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 16 (1): 26–47. 

Author: Amanda Chisholm

Abstract:

Using postcolonial analysis coupled with fieldwork in both Afghanistan and Nepal, I argue that contemporary colonial relations within private security make possible a gender and racial hierarchy of security contractors. This hierarchy of contractors results in vastly different conditions of possibilities depending on the contractors' histories and nationalities. Empirically documenting perspectives from Gurkhas, constituted as third country national (TCNs) security contractors, this article contributes to the existing critical theory and gender in both private military security company literature and postcolonial studies by (1) providing a needed racial and gendered analysis from the position of the racialized security contractors and (2) empirically documenting a growing subaltern group of men participating as security contractors.

Keywords: private security, private military security companies, third country nationals, Gurkhas, Afghanistan, martial race, postcolonial, masculinities, gender

Topics: Combatants, Male Combatants, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Livelihoods, Militarized Livelihoods, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Privatization Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, Nepal

Year: 2014

Putting ‘Mercenary Masculinities’ on the Research Agenda

Citation:

Higate, Paul. 2009. “Putting ‘Mercenary Masculinities’ on the Research Agenda.” SPAIS Working Paper 03-09, School of Sociology, Politics, and International Studies, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

Author: Paul Higate

Abstract:

Private Military Security Companies (PMSC) have come increasingly to supplant the activities of regular, national militaries - most notably in such contexts as Iraq and Afghanistan. Though a wide scholarship has addressed questions of legitimacy, regulation and control of PMSCs, critical commentators on gender have almost entirely overlooked the masculinised cultures of these private firms, the majority of which employ former military personnel. This is surprising since masculine norms, values and cultures shape private contractors security practices and can be used to explain human rights abuses, as well as the everyday ways in which these men imagine security. In these terms, the key critical issue concerns what is missed when masculinity is ignored in analyses of PMSCs, a question that is taken up in this working paper within the context of a potential research agenda for this topic of research.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Masculinism, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Rights, Human Rights, Security, Violence, Weapons /Arms

Year: 2009

Small Arms, Violence and Gender in Papua New Guinea: Towards a Research Agenda

Citation:

Capie, David. 2011. "Small Arms, Violence and Gender in Papua New Guinea: Towards a Research Agenda." Asia Pacific Viewpoint 52 (1): 42-55.

Author: David Capie

Abstract:

Among Pacific states, Papua New Guinea (PNG) has attracted the most attention from researchers looking at problems caused by small arms and light weapons. There is now a substantive body of work cataloguing different aspects of the country's problems with firearms and gun violence. This research sits alongside a large scholarly literature on violence in PNG and the connection between violence, gender and masculine identities. There has, however, been strikingly little research bringing these literatures together and looking directly at the gendered dimensions of PNG's gun violence. This paper explores some connections between small arms, violence and gender in PNG. After providing a general overview of small arms issues in PNG, it examines the misuse of firearms in urban crime and inter-communal fighting in the Highlands, specifically noting the limited evidence that is available about the differently gendered consequences of gun violence. It identifies three potential areas for further research: exploring the relationship between changing notions of masculinity and demand for firearms; gender and PNG's growing private security industry; and fragile signs of change in the role of women in the PNG Defence Force.

 

Keywords: gender, Papua New Guinea, small arms, violence

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Violence, Weapons /Arms Regions: Oceania Countries: Papua New Guinea

Year: 2011

Private Military Contractors, Peacekeepers, and the Sexual Exploitation of Women in Conflict Zones

Citation:

Sperling, Valerie. 2011. “Private Military Contractors, Peacekeepers, and the Sexual Exploitation of Women in Conflict Zones.” Paper presented at the International Studies Association Annual Conference: "Global Governance: Political Authority in Transition," Montreal, Quebec, Canada, March 16-19.

Author: Valerie Sperling

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Peacekeeping, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, SV against Women

Year: 2011

In the Business of (In)Security? Mavericks, Mercenaries and Masculinities in the Private Security Company

Citation:

Higate, Paul. 2013. “In the Business of (In)Security? Mavericks, Mercenaries and Masculinities in the Private Security Company.” In Making Gender, Making War: Violence, Military and Peacekeeping Practices, edited by Annica Kronsell and Erika Svedberg, Reprint edition. S.l.: Routledge.

Author: Paul Higate

Topics: Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Security

Year: 2013

Like Oil and Water, with a Match: Militarized Commerce, Armed Conflict and Human Security in Sudan

Citation:

Macklin, Audrey. 2004. “Like Oil and Water, with a Match: Militarized Commerce, Armed Conflict and Human Security in Sudan.” In Sites of Violence: Gender and Conflict Zones, edited by Wenona Mary Giles and Jennifer Hyndman, 75-107. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Author: Audrey Macklin

Abstract:

This article examines the gendered reverberations of global capital investment in a conflict zone, from the north with armed conflict in the south. Specifically, the article examines the author’s experience as a member of an independent assessment mission to Sudan appointed by the Canadian government. The team’s mandate was to investigate the link between oil development and human rights violations with particular reference to the Canadian oil company Talisman. In 1998 Talisman acquired a 25% share in the Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Company (GNPOC). North and South Sudan had been embroiled in an armed civil conflict almost continuously since 1956 and the oil fields were located on contested territory. This article contrasts the idea of human security (advanced as part of Canada’s foreign policy agenda at the time), with traditional conceptions of military and corporate security, using the experience of Sudanese women affected by the conflict as a way of illustrating the incongruities between competing understandings of security. It concludes that the presence of Talisman in Sudan encouraged the prioritization of corporate and military security over human security, exacerbating the human rights violations and perpetuating the struggle of women. Finally, this article evaluates strategies used by different stakeholders to encourage the Canadian company to take responsibility for its role in human rights violations.

(Abstract from Social Science Research Network)

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Militarization, Political Economies, Rights, Human Rights, Security, Human Security Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Sudan

Year: 2004

Of ‘True Professionals’ and ‘Ethical Hero Warriors’: A Gender-Discourse Analysis of Private Military and Security Companies

Citation:

Joachim, Jutta, and Andrea Schneiker. 2012. “Of ‘True Professionals’ and ‘Ethical Hero Warriors’: A Gender-Discourse Analysis of Private Military and Security Companies.” Security Dialogue 43 (6): 495-512. doi:10.1177/0967010612463488.

Authors: Jutta Joachim, Andrea Schneiker

Abstract:

Private military and security companies (PMSCs) have gained increasingly in importance over the course of the past two decades. Yet, given the intransparency of the industry and the heterogeneity of the companies that comprise it, we thus far know little about the actors involved. In this article, we offer preliminary insights into the self-representation of PMSCs, based on a gender-discourse analysis of the homepages of select companies and their main professional associations. We argue that survival in an increasingly competitive industry not only hinges on size, market share or effectiveness, but is also inherently gendered. PMSCs and their associations draw on the one hand on civilized and accepted forms of masculinity and femininity, presenting themselves as ‘highly skilled professional’ military strategists and ordinary businesses akin to banks or insurance companies. At the same time, however, PMSCs also engage in strategies of (hyper)masculinization and pathologization to set themselves apart from mercenaries, their private competitors and state security forces. In this respect, companies appear to view themselves as ‘ethical hero warriors’. Whether intended or not, their strategies have political consequences. Within the security industry, they contribute to the creation and maintenance of a norm regarding what constitutes a legitimate PMSC, to which more or less all companies strive to adhere. Vis-à-vis other security actors, these strategies seek to establish PMSCs as being superior because, unlike these actors, such companies are super-masculine and able to live up to the growing and sometimes contradictory demands of changing security contexts.

Topics: Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gender Analysis, Gendered Discourses, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Security

Year: 2012

Drinking Vodka from the ‘Butt-Crack’: Men, Masculinities and Fratriarchy in the Private Militarized Security Company

Citation:

Higate, Paul. 2012. “Drinking Vodka from the ‘Butt-Crack’: Men, Masculinities and Fratriarchy in the Private Militarized Security Company.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 14 (4): 450-69. doi:10.1080/14616742.2012.726092.

Author: Paul Higate

Abstract:

This article speaks to the emerging literature by critical scholars of race and gender focused on Private Militarized Security Companies (PMSCs) working in conflict and post-conflict settings. As one aspect of a wider project to illuminate concerns of security and the masculinized world of the private security contractor, I develop the concept of fratriarchy to bring into sharp relief the potential consequence of contractors' relative operational freedom within the context of close, yet sometimes competitive brotherly relations. Here, I go on to consider the means by which a small group of US Embassy guards in Kabul created dense intra-masculine bonds within a wider hierarchy of men through norm-bound, homoerotic practices. From the view of those involved, these practices may well have neutralized the threat of homosexuality through cementing heteronormative relations among the hegemonic members. In discussing three images depicting sexualized activities drawn from the 2009 Kabul Hazing, I argue that intimate forms of embodiment intersect with processes of racialization in politically important ways. In conclusion, it is tentatively argued that the Kabul Hazing and wider discussions of the industry conceived of through the lens of fratriarchy provide the emerging feminist security studies literature with a closely focused resource with which to augment claims located at higher levels of abstraction around the process of (re)masculinization argued to be underway in this exemplary sphere.

Topics: Combatants, Male Combatants, Feminisms, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, LGBTQ, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Race, Security Regions: Americas, North America, Asia, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan, United States of America

Year: 2012

Gender and Security Sector Reform: Engendering the Privatization of Security

Citation:

Yeung, Christina. 2008. “Gender and Security Sector Reform: Engendering the Privatization of Security.” Paper presented at the International Studies Association 49th Annual Convention, San Francisco, March 26-29.

Author: Christina Yeung

Abstract:

The growing privatization of security and violence and its differing effects on men and women is an under-researched area of security sector reform. This paper will examine what international or regional instruments and laws mandate the integration of gender and human rights issues into the privatization of security. It will further provide the context of gender concerns in post-conflict situations, in developing and developed countries. We argue that mainstreaming gender concerns through targeted initiatives will increase operational effectiveness of private security companies and mitigate the negative impacts of these companies in the absence of regulation.

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, International Law, International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Post-Conflict, Privatization, Rights, Human Rights, Security, Security Sector Reform, Violence

Year: 2008

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