The U.S. Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and Department of Defense (DoD) recently released the “Stabilization Assistance Review” (SAR). The SAR discusses how the United States can most effectively leverage diplomacy, defense, and foreign assistance to stabilize conflict-affected areas. The SAR formally defines agency roles for stabilization missions, naming State as the lead agency for stabilization efforts; USAID as the lead agency for non-security stabilization assistance; and DoD as a supporting element.
The document defines stabilization as, “a political endeavor involving an integrated civilian-military process to create conditions where locally legitimate authorities and systems can peaceably manage conflict and prevent a resurgence of violence. Transitional in nature, stabilization may include efforts to establish civil security, provide access to dispute resolution, and deliver targeted basic services, and establish a foundation for the return of displaced people and longer term development.”
The SAR outlines findings from an extensive review of past stabilization engagements; discusses the importance of revitalizing U.S. Government stabilization efforts; describes core principles and lessons learned; and outlines a proposed framework for future U.S stabilization efforts.
Stabilization Assistance Review: A Framework for Maximizing the Effectiveness of U.S Government Efforts to Stabilize Conflict-Affected Areas: