Weekly Links

By Taylor Marvin

Frans Hals, "Portrait of a Member of the Haarlem Civic Guard," 1638. Via the National Gallery of Art.
Frans Hals, “Portrait of a Member of the Haarlem Civic Guard,” 1638. Via the National Gallery of Art.

Happy Fourth of July, to readers who celebrate it.

The German military’s training mission in Mali, and its political controversy back home. “It’s ‘completely absurd’ that Germany is training Malian soldiers, who might then fight against the French,” says one opposition party defense analyst.

Last week Dalia Dassa Kaye pushed back against the argument that the rise of the Islamic State is good for Iran by increasing its value to the West and improving its bargaining position in nuclear talks.

On the limited gains of America’s years of training the Iraqi military: The Iraqi government last week chose to buy Russian warplanes — the storied Su-25 strike fighter — rather than US aircraft, and the causes of the Iraqi Army’s poor performance. (Both links via Robert Farley.)

Is the American elite consensus on drone strikes beginning to shift? (Via Ed Kilgore.)

A new anti-school bullying movement in Mexico partially frames its efforts as a way to prevent student abusers from furthering their comfort with violence by going on to join criminal cartels.

Elsewhere in Latin America, the arrest of an Argentine septuagenarian former death squad torturer in Brazil — after “World Cup police cooperation” — is a reminder of both countries’ ongoing struggle with the legacies of military dictatorship.

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