Analysis

Money Can’t Buy China Love – but Influence, Apparently

China under Xi Jinping is deeply concerned with its global status and standing and aims to regain its deserved place on the global stage Falk Hartig Asia Sentinel This has dramatic consequences not only for China but for the rest of the world One of the most important developments with regards to China has been the bold departure from the foreign policy dictum to keep a low profile. While the country, until recently, was mainly concerned with domestic issues and ... Read More »

Twilight of the Kurds

Kurdish officials once dreamed of forging their own state out of the ashes of the war against the Islamic State. Now they are fighting for their very survival. By Joost Hiltermann, Maria Fantappie Foreign Policy Just a few months ago, it appeared that the Kurds of Iraq and Syria were the biggest winners in the war against the Islamic State. Bolstered by alliances with the very Western powers that had once betrayed and divided them, they dared to dream that ... Read More »

The Iran Nuclear Deal at Two: A Status Report

The 2015 Iran nuclear accord is working, but is at risk from longstanding U.S.-Iran rivalry, Trump administration policies and Tehran’s upsurge of activism in the Middle East. ICG The deal’s other signatories should encourage the U.S. not to withdraw and consider ways to sustain the deal, regardless of U.S. actions and as long as Iran remains committed to it. What’s the issue? The 2015 Iran nuclear accord is as successful as it remains fragile. President Trump has warned he will ... Read More »

Will Religious Instability Destroy Bangladesh?

Bangladesh was born in 1971 after India intervened in Pakistan’s civil war, which resulted in the independence of what was known as East Pakistan. Doug Bandow The National Interest The new state’s politics were violent too, punctuated by military rule, which pushed to Islamicize the secular state. Bangladesh today is nominally democratic, but politics is bitterly fractious and violent. Moreover, Islamist tides are rising. Like a number of other majority Islamic states, such as Afghanistan and Pakistan, a once relaxed social ... Read More »

EU’s Western Balkan Dilemma – the Trickiest Task in 2018

Last year (2017) was not the year of the Western Balkans, as analyses can be read. Adelina Marini euinside This was the year of the EU’s awakening to this volatile region in its immediate neighbourhood, and the realisation that it is of strategic importance to member states in time of a renewed geopolitical race. 2017 began with the surprising recognition of the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini (Italy, Socialists and Democrats) that she was ... Read More »

From Siberia to Crimea: The Revenge of History in U.S.-Russian Relations

One is tempted to conclude that the Washington foreign-policy establishment has learned little over the past century Lyle J. Goldstein The National Interest Strolling the cavernous and well-appointed halls of Russia’s carefully renovated Central Naval Museum [Центральный Военно-морской Музей] near the Neva River in St. Petersburg, one can find an assortment of interesting artifacts, not least the small skiff in which Peter the Great learned to sail more than three centuries ago now. Among the many captured battle standards from Sweden, Turkey ... Read More »

Sudanese heritage youth in Australia are frequently maligned by fear-mongering and racism

Recent criminal incidents in Melbourne involving young people of African heritage have enabled the media and politicians such as Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton to again capitalise on the opportunity to demonise those of African descent in Australia. Melanie Baak The Conversation This has become a common occurrence, traceable back at least to the media reporting of the murder of South Sudanese Melburnian Liep Gony in 2007. The then immigration minister, Kevin Andrews, responded by restricting the numbers of refugees ... Read More »

How Washington Will Lose Its Influence in Asia

There is no guarantee that President Trump will ask Congress to renew the Trade Protection Authority Act before it expires Peter C.Y. Chow The National Interest As Douglas Irwin said, if “truth” is the first to be sacrificed in the war, then “free trade” will be the scapegoat in the populist electoral politics. The most recent examples are the Brexit and the U.S. withdrawal from the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP-12). While the British government is facing contentious negotiations with the ... Read More »

Understanding the Global Refugee Crisis: A Tale of 3 Myths

The refugee problem is universal and growing; it needs to be addressed clearly. Arie Kruglanski The National Interest According to UN sources, we are witnessing these days the largest refugee crisis since World War II, as approximately 65 million refugees roam the planet in search of a safe haven and a respite from bedlam. Their massive relocation sends tremors across continents fomenting a “refugee crisis,” and fueling the politics of fear across the globe. I recently returned from a visit to Uganda where I ... Read More »

The Paradox of Protecting Students

In shielding students from sexual harassers, professors support a broken system. Juliana Spahr and Stephanie Young The Chronicle of Higher Education While nearly every day brings news of someone banished from the entertainment industry — Harvey Weinstein, Garrison Keillor, Louis C.K. — the situation in the academy is very different. Only a small number of tenured faculty members have lost their jobs in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment and assault. Of course, this isn’t a result of any ... Read More »

The World According to H.R. McMaster

Why is he so worried about North Korea? Why is H.R. McMaster so alarmed by North Korea? Uri Friedman The Atlantic Why does Donald Trump’s national-security adviser insist—more vigorously than any administration official except the president himself—that Kim Jong Un must be denied the capability to place a nuclear warhead on a missile that can reach the United States, even if this requires initiating a military conflict with the North that could devolve into a cataclysmic war? While Secretary of ... Read More »

Statement of the National Coalition to Prevent an Iranian Nuclear Weapon

The United States together with the UK, France, Germany, China, Russia and Iran should continue to implement rigorously the JCPOA. A TNI Exclusive The National Interest Prevention of an Iranian nuclear weapon is a vital U.S. national security objective. The multilateral nuclear agreement with Iran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), assures that if it continues to comply with it, Iran cannot acquire a nuclear weapon for at least 13 years, after which time the parties can either implement ... Read More »

Before losing battle with cancer, this 27-year-old woman penned a heartbreaking, eye-opening letter

“That’s the thing about life, it is fragile, precious, unpredictable and each day is a gift, not a given right,” Holly Butcher wrote in an emotional post on Facebook. Alex Eriksen Yahoo Butcher, 27, lost her battle with cancer this week. Her words are drawing attention on social media, garnering more than 8,000 shares, 11,000 likes, and 2,000 comments. Butcher, from Brisbane, Australia, covers a range of life topics in her letter, including coming to grips with her mortality. She ... Read More »

The harsh reality for Palestinians: The rules of the game in the Middle East are changing

Six Arab foreign ministers met in Jordan’s capital on Saturday to discuss the response to the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital By Norman Hermant in Amman ABC They had little new to say. The head of the Arab League told a media conference there would be a renewed effort to have East Jerusalem recognised as the capital of a Palestinian state. But that approach has been tried already, and gained little traction. Washington’s announcement a month ago that it would ... Read More »

Time for Germany to Learn to Lead

Washington’s move to abandon its global leadership role marks the end of Germany’s foreign policy innocence Christiane Hoffmann Spiegel Berlin will soon be faced with difficult choices that could dent its moral standing It is often a single sentence that goes down in history, one that epitomizes an idea, a movement, an era or a personality. Two sentences from Angela Merkel come to mind. One, focused on domestic politics, was an entreaty: “We can do it.” It was a pledge ... Read More »

Economic and geopolitical risks ahead for 2018

Last year was a year of disruption and distraction – yet another year of squandered policy opportunities John Hewson * The Canberra Times I had hoped 2018 would be different, driven by real leadership and real policy, effectively responding to the needs, expectations and aspirations of the majority of the electorate, as they struggle with key elements of their daily costs of living, with their wages flatlining, and constant concern about the security of their jobs. Yet the year began ... Read More »