Security

A new multilateral world without the US

Mege 2b

A global consensus is emerging without the US. Canada and other countries that rely on a liberal world order must reinforce key multilateral institutions. Colin Chia Policy Options Can multilateral cooperation keep the international order going with the most powerful country acting as dead weight? Canada is adopting a broad foreign policy posture that presumes the answer is yes. With the US taking a hard line in NAFTA negotiations and seeing the bilateral relationship in “win-lose” terms, upholding a broader ... Read More »

How America Can Keep From Losing in the South China Sea

Rege 4d

Washington is losing ground in the South China Sea, and risks making the situation lasting unless America imposes “real” strategic costs to China. Tuan N. Pham The Diplomat Part one of this two-part series provided strategic perspectives and context to the recent uptick in tensions in the South China Sea (SCS) following a year of relative calm since the International Tribunal of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at the Hague handed down its historic and sweeping award on maritime entitlements ... Read More »

Turkey eyes deal for Russian air defense system, irking West

US forces, accompanied by Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) fighters, drive their armoured vehicles near the northern Syrian village of Darbasiyah, on the border with Turkey on April 28, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / DELIL SOULEIMAN

Experts skeptical Ankara will end up inking purchase of S-400 batteries, but say the message of dissatisfaction with NATO is what’s important Stuart Williams The Times of Israel ISTANBUL, Turkey (AFP) — Turkey and Russia are inching toward an accord for the first major Turkish weapons purchase from Moscow, troubling Ankara’s allies in NATO even though the deal may not ultimately materialize. According to Turkish and Russian officials, all preparations have been made for the purchase of a sophisticated S-400 ... Read More »

Xi, Putin agree to enhance strategic coordination, appropriately deal with DPRK nuclear test

Exp 2b

XIAMEN, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping met with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Sunday, calling for enhancing mutual support and strategic coordination. Source: Xinhua Editor: Mu Xuequan The two leaders also agreed to appropriately deal with the latest nuclear test conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). Putin is in the southeastern Chinese coastal city of Xiamen, Fujian Province, to attend the ninth BRICS summit and the Dialogue of Emerging Market and Developing Countries ... Read More »

Three Dangerous Delusions about Korea

Pera 5e

They say that most of the world’s real dangers arise not because of what people don’t know but because of what they do «know» that just ain’t so. JAMES GEORGE JATRAS Strategic Culture As a case in point, consider three things about Korea that the bipartisan Washington establishment seems quite sure of but are far removed from reality:Delusion 1: All options, including U.S. military force, are «on the table.» – Everyone knows there are no military «options» the U.S. could ... Read More »

The Burundian army’s dangerous over-reliance on peacekeeping

Repa 1a

Burundi needs international peacekeeping missions to keep its troops paid and happy. Peacekeeping missions need Burundian troops. But for how long? BY RICHARD MONCRIEFF & THIERRY VIRCOULON African Arguments The crisis that has engulfed Burundi since April 2015 is the result of infighting among a small number of insiders belonging to the ruling party, the CNDD-FDD. Having all fought in the bush together, some of them felt that the president, Pierre Nkurunziza, should make way for others to have a turn at the top job, ... Read More »

Colombia’s FARC rebels reborn as legal party

Baug 1a

Colombia’s FARC former guerrilla group has re-launched itself as the Common Alternative Revolutionary Force, sealing its transformation into a leftist political party following its disarmament after a half-century civil conflict. Hurriyet The name controversially retains the same acronym and the revolutionary spirit of the communist guerrilla group, which fought a bloody 52-year campaign against the state before signing a peace deal last year. The party was set to hold a formal launch ceremony on Sept. 1 on Bolivar Square, near ... Read More »

Nawaz Sharif’s Exit and the Pakistan-China-India Triangle: Why Islamabad needs a serious re-think

Vax 4d

All eyes in the next few months, into the elections of 2018, will be on how Nawaz Sharif, who  resigned last month, as Prime Minister of Pakistan after being disqualified from Parliament by the Supreme Court, will play his cards vis-à-vis the Pakistan army. TRIDIVESH SINGH MAINI IPP Review Will Sharif, who was also forced to resign as president of his party, PML-N, adopt an aggressive posture with the Pakistan army, or play it smartly? In his first two tenures as Prime Minister, his ... Read More »

China, Japan and the Energy Quest in the East China Sea

Mose 2b

In early August 2017, Japan lodged a protest with China over its gas exploration in a disputed area of the East China Sea. Confirming the presence of a Chinese drillship close to Tokyo’s proposed median line, Japan accused China of conducting “unilateral development in the area” which remains yet to be demarcated between the two countries. IPP Review Amrita Jash In its defence against Tokyo’s accusations, Beijing categorically pointed out that its oil and gas activities in the maritime areas in ... Read More »

Turkey’s Downward Spiral

Vax 91

It is becoming harder by the day to make sense of the strategy behind Ankara’s domestic and foreign policy choices—assuming there is one at all. Marc Pierini Carnegie To Turkish analysts, Ankara’s policies may make sense. For Western politicians and analysts, including eternal hopefuls, summer 2017 will be remembered as a time when Turkey spiraled downward into more rule of the arbitrary, increased political inconsistencies, and aggressive postures on the international scene. It is becoming harder by the day to ... Read More »

The Balkans Between Competing Poles

Project Syndicate logo 1a LLLLLL

MADRID – Few world regions are more culturally and politically complex than the Balkans. And there may be no clearer illustration of the region’s freighted past and present than the life and legacy of one of its exceptional sons: the physicist and inventor Nikola Tesla. Javier Solana Project Syndicate Born into an Orthodox Serbian family in 1856 in a town that is now part of Croatia, Tesla’s nationality remains an object of debate in the region. Tesla believed that scientific ... Read More »

US to install radar systems on tiny Pacific island nation of Palau

Wy 5e

The Defense Department plans to install two radar systems on the tiny Pacific nation of Palau for monitoring air and maritime traffic and possibly tracking North Korean missiles Wyatt Olson Stars and Stripes The systems would include a series of radar towers on the Palau archipelago, which includes more than 300 islands. Officials of the two countries last met on Aug. 16 to discuss the proposed radar arrays, according to a joint statement from the office of the president of ... Read More »

With Referendum Approaching, Kurds Wait for More U.S. Military Aid

MOSUL, IRAQ - OCTOBER 20:  A Kurdish peshmerga tank moves forward during an assault to recapture the village of Tiskharab on October 20, 2016 near Mosul, Iraq. Kurdish and Iraqi forces, supported by numerous countries including Britain and the USA, have continued their advance towards towards Iraq's second largest city of Mosul which has been held by Islamic State militants since 2014.  (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

A $22 million U.S. Defense Department fund that has helped pay the salaries of Kurdish Peshmerga fighters in northern Iraq is due to run dry in September, worsening a financial crunch as the government in Erbil struggles with billions of dollars in debt. Paul McLeary Foreign Policy The timing couldn’t be worse, as the one-year program runs out at the same time the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) plans to hold a referendum on formally leaving Iraq, a vote the United ... Read More »

Use it or lose it: Why Canada’s navy needs to be in the South China Sea

Pelle 4d

Canada’s diplomatic and strategic engagement in East Asia has been erratic over the past two decades. Successive governments have been incapable or unwilling to clearly articulate a regional strategy, remaining virtually silent on major geopolitical tensions. Adam P. MacDonald iPolitics  Some observers have advocated regular deployments of the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) to create a visible, routine presence in the region. One unexplored question is whether Canadian naval ships should participate in U.S. freedom of navigation (FON) patrols in the ... Read More »

China’s PLA readying missiles to counter Indian air power

Ult 4d

As tensions mount between India and China in a border dispute, Beijing is strengthening its mobile missile defenses to counteract India’s perceived air supremacy Zi Yang Asia Times Every summer the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) conducts a major air defense exercise at its western theater command’s air force experimental training base. The anti-aircraft brigade of the 79th group army was the main participant in this year’s drill, on August 22. The exercise evaluated the unit’s radar system, command and control ... Read More »

Myanmar Tips into New Crisis after Rakhine State Attacks

Dauc 1a

The Rohingya insurgent attacks that killed twelve Myanmar soldiers and officials and perhaps 77 of their own number is a serious escalation of a ten-month-old crisis. ICG They make implementation of this week’s recommendations to address Rohingya grievances from Kofi Annan’s Advisory Commission both harder and more urgent. In the early hours of 25 August, militants from Harakah al-Yaqin– a Rohingya insurgent group that now refers to itself in English as the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) – mounted coordinated attacks ... Read More »