Diplomacy

War, conflict, economic strife: the world in 2017 is rife with hot spots, but leavened by hope

In all the attention rightfully given to the new US administration and Brexit, one could be forgiven for forgetting that other difficult political situations exist around the world. Susan Harris Rimmer The Conversation But they do exist, and in the uncertainty that surrounds global governance in 2017, this risk of human suffering is great. One London School of Economics… War, conflict, economic… Read More »

What is Russia’s role in Syria and the ‘post-West’ world order?

It’s become customary not to expect much from the Syria peace conferences. Maxim A. Suchkov Al Monitor The warring parties argue around same mutual claims, often stick to maximalist positions and frequently seem more interested in trying to project a sympathetic image to outside observers than in discussing the issues on the agenda. External sponsors, in… What is Russia’s… Read More »

Is there a US diplomacy vacuum at the UN in Geneva?

“Where is the US in all this? I can’t tell you because I don’t know.” Imogen Foulkes BBC News These were the words of the United Nations special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, days before a fresh round of peace talks began. Only a few months… Is there a… Read More »

The latest UN Syria talks will fail, just like the last ones

Turkey, Iran, and Russia could set the delicate path to peace in Syria but the colossal differences that have appeared between them mean the latest round of UN talks will be as unsuccessful as the last ones. Sami Moubayed Asia Times The upcoming round of UN-mandated Syria talks, known as Geneva IV, will start in Switzerland this weekend. High hopes were… The latest UN… Read More »

How Do You Solve a Problem Like North Korea?

How to solve the DPRK problem: a little less diplomatic conversation, a little more action. Daniel R. DePetris The National Interest How does one punish a country that is the most diplomatically isolated in the world, already sanctioned to the teeth, but seemingly immune to the… How Do You… Read More »

Calling Secretary Tillerson

When Rex Tillerson showed up for his first day of work at the State Department earlier this month, he moved quickly to allay the concerns of diplomats and others alarmed by President Trump’s security policies and… THE EDITORIAL BOARD  The New York Times Addressing a crowd in the department lobby, the new secretary of state spoke of his “high regard” for the… Mr. Tillerson generated good will… Calling Secretary… Read More »

Russia Expected to Veto UN Resolution Blaming Syria for Chemical Attacks

UNITED NATIONS — Russia says it will veto a draft U.N. resolution blaming the Syrian government for some chemical weapons attacks in Syria if it is brought to a… Margaret Besheer VoA “The resolution prejudges the results of the investigation, it is one-sided [and] based on insufficient evidence,” Russian Deputy U.N. Envoy Vladimir Safronkov told reporters after a… Russia Expected to… Read More »

Why Iran wants Palestine back on regional agenda

Fatima Navab Safavi is the daughter of Mojtaba Navab Safavi (1924-1955), an Iranian cleric and one of the first to mobilize Iranian masses against Israel back in the early… Ali Hashem Al-Monitor Donning the traditional black chador, Safavi told Al-Monitor in an interview, “Years before the… Why Iran wants… Read More »

Iran confirms: US paid ransom

Back in September, I testified before the House Financial Services Committee on the allegation that the Obama administration had paid Iran a ransom—at the time it was believed to be $400 million but it was later revealed that the… Michael Rubin AEIdeas At the hearing, it is now clear that State Department officials lied outright to the… Iran confirms: US… Read More »

Julie Bishop and Theresa May divided on Syria and Bashar al-Assad

London: A split has opened up between Britain and Australia on the future of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop rejecting British Prime Minister Theresa May’s demands for Assad to go, saying the… Latika Bourke The Canberra Times Mrs May on Thursday local time spoke with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull by… The pair discussed a… Julie Bishop and… Read More »

Donald Trump’s presidential diplomacy deal?

Trump is treating the US as a business venture and replacing the ‘art of diplomacy’ with the ‘art of the deal’. Sean W Burges Al Jazeera News Most world leaders are having a hard time adapting to Donald Trump’s foreign policy style. None of his… Donald Trump’s presidential… Read More »

Watchmen of Lake Chad: Vigilante Groups Fighting Boko Haram

Regional armies in the Lake Chad basin deploy vigilantes to sharpen campaigns against Boko Haram insurgents… ICG But using these militias creates risks as combatants turn to communal violence and organised crime… Over the long term they must be disbanded or regulated… Watchmen of Lake… Read More »