Diplomacy

Turkey’s plan to acquire Russia’s S-400 air-defense system may never happen, analysts say

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While Russia continues to tout the planned sale of its S-400 strategic air-defense system to Turkey, some U.S. analysts are growing more skeptical about the deal. Jeff Daniels CNBC On Thursday, the CEO of Russia’s state-owned Rostec defense company said the deal with Turkey exceeded $2 billion, according to Tass, the Russian news agency. It followed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in September announcing the longtime member of NATO had made a down payment to Moscow for the S-400 and ... Read More »

Will exodus of firms from Catalonia economically influence voters?

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Damage to Catalan economy’s credibility and investor confidence may persist for years The secessionist process initiated by Catalonia’s regional government has prompted companies to relocate in other Spanish regions to ensure continued free-market access to the rest of Spain and the European Union. José Guimón The Irish Times Over 1,300 companies have now moved their headquarters outside Cataloniain the three weeks following Catalonia’s illegal referendum for independence of October 1st. The traditional concern that multinational affiliates are “footloose” applies equally to local companies. ... Read More »

North Korea Nuclear Testing Tunnel Collapse, Fears of Radiation Leaks, Will Trump Resort to “Fire and Fury” Insanity?

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Trump’s Sudden Change of Plans, International Double Standards Urgent warnings of a radiation leak have been issued after the collapse of a tunnel under North Korea’s 7,200 foot high Mount Mantap, under which the country tests their weapons systems. Felicity Arbuthnot Global Research The accident, believed to have happened on 10th October – though it only came to light on 31st October – is a disaster which is reported to have killed two hundred people. Were it anywhere else on earth ... Read More »

The great ‘hijack’!

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‘Labour Friends of Cyprus’ On the 17 October 2017, we were invited to attend at the Grand Committee Room in the House of Commons, the inauguration of the newly created group “Labour Friends of Cyprus”, an idea of our compatriot Dr. Vasilis Mavrou, a long- time friend of the Leader of the Labour Party Mr. Jeremy Corbyn. Fanoulla Argyrou * Agora Dialogue Dr. Mavrou was appointed as the President of the group. The meeting was scheduled to start at 6.30pm ... Read More »

Andy Pollak: Vacuous Brexit talk could yield to creative solution

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Regulatory line of Irish Sea far easier and less disruptive than land border The challenge of preventing a “hard” border between the two parts of Ireland is among the obstacles preventing the UK and the EU moving on to the second phase of Brexit talks, the future trading relationship that the former is so desperate to find agreement on. Andy Pollak The Irish Times When they think about Ireland at all, the British side is still talking vacuously about a ... Read More »

Corbyn to skip Balfour centennial dinner with Netanyahu

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Emily Thornberry to attend event in Labour leader’s absence; Israeli envoy to UK brands opponents of declaration ‘extremists’ Alexander Fulbright The Times of Israel UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has reportedly declined to attend a dinner in London this week with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, which pledged Britain’s support for a Jewish national… Although no reason was given for Corbyn’s decision to skip the event, which was reported by the Sunday ... Read More »

UK’s pre-summit push to ‘divide and rule EU 27’ impeded Brexit talks

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Exclusive Senior sources say plan to boost PM with better outcome shelved over concerns about rewarding divisive tactics Daniel Boffey  The Guardian The British government’s attempt to lobby individual EU leaders in the run-up to the recent crunch EU summit, where member states were to judge the progress of the negotiations, actively damaged Theresa May’s hopes of a better outcome, the Guardian has learned. A secret plan had been drawn up under which the EU leaders would have made the surprise ... Read More »

Scottish economy ‘fundamentally strong and ready to face Brexit’

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Scotland’s economy is “fundamentally strong” and ready to meet the challenges of Brexit, the Economy Secretary has said Lucinda Cameron Keith Brown told the Unite conference on Saturday that the economy is growing while the number of people in employment has risen and unemployment has fallen. The Scotsman However he said withdrawal from the EU posed some “serious headwinds” and warned that a no-deal Brexit would be “catastrophic”. He said Scotland would lose an estimated £11 billion a year by ... Read More »

Breaking neutrality, Spanish Jews come out against Catalan independence

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‘As Spanish Jews we wholly support the Spanish Constitution’ Despite umbrella body statement, Jews living in the secessionist region appear divided over the crisis that is roiling the country JTA The Times of Israel Breaking with its policy of neutrality on Catalan independence, the main umbrella group of Spanish Jews on Friday blamed separatists for the kingdom’s crisis and declared allegiance to the constitution. The Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain, or FCJE, did this in a statement released hours ... Read More »

Turkey can’t integrate Russian missiles: NATO

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A leading NATO official has said that Turkey will face “consequences” if it purchases a Russian air-defense system “The principal of sovereignty obviously exists in acquisition of defense equipment, but the same way that nations are sovereign in making their decision, they are also sovereign in facing the consequences of that decision,” said Gen. Petr Pavel, chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, on Oct. 25 during a Washington meeting with a group of reporters hosted by the Defense Writers Group. Hurriyet ... Read More »

Don’t Give up on Moldova

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Moldova is stuck in a geopolitical tug-of-war. The West should make more of an effort to pull it into its orbit Andrew Foxall Moldova—Europe’s poorest country—has struggled with the challenges of post-Soviet transition. The National Interest This transition has become vastly more difficult as a result of the breakdown of Europe’s post-Cold War security order in 2014. It is now caught up in a geopolitical tug-of-war between Russia and the West, and is at risk of becoming Europe’s next security crisis, with potential ... Read More »

Newton Emerson: Catalan crisis a double-edged sword for Sinn Féin

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Making comparisons with Spanish situation only serves to show how accommodating UK is The Dáil debated the Catalan crisis on Tuesday at Sinn Féin’s request. Newton Emerson The Irish Times How long before the republican party realises this topic is a double-edged sword? The worse the crisis in Spain becomes, the more it undermines separatist positions inside the UK – and that applies to Scottish nationalists as much as to Irish republicans. Yet both are clinging ever more tightly to ... Read More »

ISIS: Some Things Cannot Be Killed Off

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: ISIS is facing defeat and liquidation, but its members are dispersing throughout the world and establishing local branches. Lt. Col. (res.) Dr. Mordechai Kedar BESA The idea of the Islamic Caliphate is not dead, and the struggle in the West is not over. ISIS may disappear as an organization, but the world will continue to suffer from the evil spirit that this organization has instilled among too many Muslims. As the city of Raqqa, the capital of the ... Read More »

Russia Has Grand Designs For the International Order (Op-ed)

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Moscow’s new grand strategy is still in gestation Russia’s foreign policy has come full circle in the last 25 years. Dmitri Trenin  The Moscow Times It started with the rejection of the Soviet Union’s superpower posture, its global geopolitical ambitions, and its ideology. The Russian Federation positioned itself as a “new Russia” — no longer a superpower, with modest ambitions beyond its borders, and willing to go along with the Soviet Union’s former adversaries who became Moscow’s new friends and ... Read More »

Will anyone protect the Rohingya?

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Since August, the Rohingya, an ethnic minority in Myanmar, has faced what a United Nations official called “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.” Vincent A. Auger  The Conversation Recent reports describe a campaign by Myanmar security forces to drive the Rohingya from the country permanently. Hundreds of thousands have fled to camps in neighboring Bangladesh, creating a new refugee crisis. This is exactly the type of atrocity that the United Nations vowed to combat in 2005, when it asserted a ... Read More »

Michael Bloomberg: Brexit is stupidest thing any country has done besides Trump

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Exclusive: Billionaire media mogul says it is ‘hard to understand why a country doing so well wanted to ruin it’ Graham Ruddick  The Guardian Michael Bloomberg, the billionaire media mogul and former mayor of New York, has said Brexit is the “single stupidest thing any country has ever done” apart from the election of Donald Trump as US president. Bloomberg argued that “it is really hard to understand why a country that was doing so well wanted to ruin it” ... Read More »