Diplomacy

‘Outrage is justified’: David Attenborough backs school climate strikers

Exclusive: broadcaster says older generations have done terrible things and should listen to young Damian Carrington The Guardian The outrage of the students striking from school over climate change inaction is “certainly justified”, according to Sir David Attenborough, who said older generations had done terrible damage to the planet. In an interview with the former UN climate chief Christiana Figueres, the broadcaster and naturalist dismissed critics of the widely praised global movement of school strikes as cynics. “[Young people] understand the ... Read More »

Turkey’s “Outsider” Threats

Ever since it was founded as a republic in 1923, Turkey has struggled with its so-called Kurdish issue. Madhuri Karak JSTOR Daily In Turkey, the cost of living has soared and inflation is hovering at 20%. During last month’s local elections, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ruling Justice and Development Party—A.K. Parti in Turkish—blamed this on “outsider” threats undermining Turkey over longstanding economic issues at home. The weakening currency, for example, was cast as an American and Zionist-led conspiracy against Turkey. ... Read More »

Why the US Navy has 10 ships, 130 aircraft and 9,000 personnel in the Mediterranean

Two deployed aircraft carriers, heading opposite directions, met up in the Mediterranean Sea to do some high-end ops and snap some selfies to commemorate the event. Mark D. Faram Marine Corps Times The event happened after the carrier John C. Stennis strike group transited the Suez Canal, entering the Mediterranean, where the Abraham Lincoln strike group awaited. The combined strike groups means that, right now, more than 130 U.S. aircraft, 10 ships and 9,000 sailors and Marines are now operating ... Read More »

Venezuela’s Trade Scheme With Turkey Is Enriching a Mysterious Maduro Cron

Investigators say retrofitted criminal networks are being used to trade gold for the food that’s propping up the regime. By Michael Smith and Monte Reel From: New Economy Forum In the late afternoon of July 15, 2016, a cluster of staffers inside the Turkish Embassy in Caracas struggled to make sense of the images from home flashing across their televisions and computer screens. Military trucks were blocking a bridge over the Bosporus, tanks were rolling into the Istanbul airport, and ... Read More »

Not Proclaiming Exclusive Economic Zone Costing 28 Billion Kuna

ZAGREB, April 25, 2019 – MOST MPs Nikola Grmoja and Tomislav Panenić said on Thursday that Croatia is losing between 170 and 270 million euro each year for not declaring an… HINA Total Croatia News Grmoja told a press conference that during Wednesday’s parliamentary debate on a MOST-sponsored motion for Croatia to declare an EEZ, Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) whip… “Because of that every year we lost funds equalling the value of one Pelješac bridge,” Grmoja said and added that ... Read More »

Addressing the Rise of Libya’s Madkhali-Salafis

Adherents of a Salafi school, the Madkhalis, are gaining prominence on both sides of Libya’s divide, causing concerns about puritanical agendas imposed through military and… ICG Negotiators should ensure that rebuilt security forces are politically neutral and secure the Madkhalis’ pledge to respect pluralism. What’s new? Madkhali-Salafis, followers of an ultra-conservative Sunni Muslim doctrine originating in Saudi Arabia, have gained great influence across Libya, including in key armed groups and… Although they helped fight ISIS and provide security, their rise ... Read More »

Turkey Proposes No Middle Ground in Impasse Over Russia Missiles

Turkey hasn’t proposed stationing an advanced missile-defense system its buying from Russia in a third country as a way of defusing U.S. opposition to the purchase, Foreign Minister Mevlut… Selcan Hacaoglu Bloomberg The government in Ankara has though suggested to the U.S. and NATO creating a joint committee of experts to examine steps Turkey could take to limit the use of the S-400 missiles, he… But “the U.S. still hasn’t responded to the offer, whereas NATO wants it.” Turkey will ... Read More »

A Warlord Rises in Libya

And Trump is praising him. Kathy Gilsinan The Atlantic A warlord’s forces swept across a fractured country and fought the internationally recognized government to a stalemate outside the capital city, and another Arab nation suddenly faced the specter of military rule. And in a recent, ambiguous statement issued after a phone call with the man in charge of that offensive, President Donald Trump seemed to signal he would be fine with that. Trump has repeatedly expressed support for authoritarian rulers ... Read More »

Will 2020 Democrats condemn the Armenian genocide?

Only four lawmakers running for president have signed on to remembrance resolutions Niels Lesniewski Roll Call Whether the slaughter of Armenians by Ottoman Turks in 1915 amounted to a genocide is still a fraught political question for U.S. presidential candidates more than a century later. The question for now is how many of the growing field of candidates might weigh in on Wednesday for the annual commemoration. April 24, 1915 is generally considered to mark the start of actions that led ... Read More »

The Risks of Maximising Pressure on Iran

The Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran is more likely to fuel resistance and retaliation than capitulation. Ali Vaez ICG Washington should heed past lessons lest it provokes a new nuclear crisis or a regional escalation. The U.S. decision on 22 April to end sanctions exemptions for Iran’s remaining oil customers, following on an earlier designation of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), significantly escalates the… The intent is clear: bankrupt Iran into… The Risks of… Read More »

Bernie Sanders: Israeli government ‘racist’

Manchester: US Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is standing by his criticism of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, saying Israel is “now run by a right- wing, dare I say, racist government.” McClatchy, AP WAtoday Sanders said on Monday, US time, at a CNN town hall in New Hampshire that he believed the United States should try to bring people together and deal with the Middle East on a level-playing-field basis, “not just support one country”. The senator from Vermont said ... Read More »

US threatens to veto UN resolution on rape as weapon of war, officials say

Exclusive: US warns it will reject measure over language on sexual health in latest example of hardline abortion stance Julian Borger The Guardian The US is threatening to veto a United Nations resolution on combatting the use of rape as a weapon of war because of its language on reproductive and sexual health, according to a senior UN official and European diplomats. The German mission hopes the resolution will be adopted at a special UN security council session on Tuesday on sexual ... Read More »

Sri Lanka’s Easter Bombings: Peaceful Coexistence Under Attack

The lethal Easter bombings in Sri Lanka have stunned a country still recovering from decades of internal war. Alan Keenan ICG Political and religious leaders alike should reject the rhetoric of collective blame and reaffirm the island’s strained but living tradition of intercommunal amity. Sri Lankans from all ethnic and religious groups – Sinhalese and Tamil, Muslim, Buddhist, Christian and Hindu – lived through terrible violence during the decades of war and terrorism that ended ten years ago. Still, no ... Read More »

Mike Gravel: The Cambodia Genocide is Part of Henry Kissinger’s Legacy

Forty-four years ago last week, Cambodia was taken over by the Khmer Rouge. From 1975 to 1979, in what is referred to as the Cambodian Genocide, a quarter of the country’s entire population was wiped out. Mike Gravel Florida Daily There is some debate over the exact number: 1.6 million dead? 2.5 million? In the 2000s, Cambodia held a national tribunal. Two prominent party members were convicted for crimes against humanity. But someone else should have been tried, too. And ... Read More »

US to end Iran oil waivers to 8 countries, including Turkey

The United States announced on April 22 it will no longer grant sanctions exemptions to eight countries, including Turkey. Washington Hurriyet The White House said that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates- close U.S. allies that back President Donald Trump‘s hawkish stance against regional rival Iran– would work to make up the difference in oil to ensure that global markets are not rocked. “This decision is intended to bring Iran‘s oil exports to zero, denying the regime its principal source of revenue,” ... Read More »

EU’s two-faced ‘values’

Does it really make sense to talk about ‘European values’? Proponents of the European project like to talk about a core set of “European values” for which it stands. Hans Kundnani Politico At a time when the European Union is threatened from within and without, the idea is particularly tempting. It lifts the EU from an entity that simply pursues its own interests — like any other state or group of states — and makes it a “normative power” that can ... Read More »