A leaked long-term plan for China’s massive $56 billion investment in Pakistan projects the goals of the Beijing’s One Belt, One Road initiative as a ploy for economic domination, the creation of surveillance states, and allowing China to shape media landscapes.
US President Donald Trump has one attribute that his greatest friends and most impassioned enemies are agreed on – he is a great deal-maker. Deal-making has been the key to his business success, which has been considerable. And way back in the 1980s he co-authored “The Art of the Deal” which reached number 1 on the New York Times Best Seller list, and stayed there for 13 weeks.
Forced to acknowledge that Iran is complying with the nuclear agreement it concluded two years ago with the world’s major powers, US President Donald J. Trump appears to be groping for ways to provoke Iran to back out of the deal. If successful, Mr. Trump could spark a nuclear arms race in the Middle East at a time that a Chinese agreement to build a drone manufacturing plant in Saudi Arabia could initiate a similar drone race that threatens to take hostilities in the region to a whole new, more dangerous level.
Remarks at conference on Regional Cooperation Initiatives in the Asia-Pacific and the Emergence of New Eurasian Geopolitics, Centre on Asia and Globalisation, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. One thing last week’s US air strikes in Syria highlight is the fact that the sands are continuously shifting as regional and world powers jockey for position in a future Eurasian world order. The strikes raise questions that go far beyond potential greater US involvement in the Syrian conflict. The answer to those questions will likely impact the role America may play in Eurasia and the Asia Pacific.
In a conference for the launch of a supplementary study programme for a group of Syrian scholarship holders at the University of Konstanz, Wolfgang Seibel, a professor of Political and Administrative Science at the University of Konstanz, presented a keynote on important historical facts of Middle East politics over the 20th century and Germany’s resurrection from rubbles after the Second World War, highlighting the role of leadership, institution building and the privileges, responsibilities and obligations come along with them.
What is the greatest difference between the cold-war order and the 21st-century global order? A cold war joke offers a good hint. An East German school teacher asks little Fritz: “Fritzchen, why are you always speaking of our Soviet brothers? It’s ‘Soviet friends’.” Fritz responds: “Well, you can pick your friends.” Back then, they had no freedom to choose, but still enjoyed a form of stability through comradeship or alliances in a bipolar balance of power. Now, we can make choices, but these choices do not guarantee any degree of strategic stability. Globalisation has injected a sense of fluidity, uncertainty,…
The Commonwealth is a facet of contemporary life that most people know little about. The Commonwealth games, interposed every four years between the Olympics, might arouse a flicker of interest across the globe, but as for the background or purposes of the organization there is little general knowledge or concern. And yet the Commonwealth has the potential to exert an enormous power for good on global politics.
Two recent high profile events, Pakistan’s Super Cricket League (PSL) final and the Lahore Literary Festival, reflect the country’s struggle with the rise of militant Sunni Muslim ultra-conservatism. They also illustrate how militancy often serves illiberal Pakistani leaders as a tool to curtail critical expression much like Western populists such as US President Donald J. Trump seek to redefine truth and refocus public debate.
Never mind the traditional first hundred days. Within US President Trump’s first twenty days in office the broad outlines of his policy for the Middle East had emerged. It clearly has two over-riding objectives – to defeat Islamic State (IS) and to cut Iran down to size. In the Trump world view, both IS and Iran represent clear and present dangers to the stability, values and way of life of the civilized world in general, and the US in particular.
From the streets of Turin to Silicon Valley, people power is taking the world by storm. With frustrations rising and the old order apparently crumbling, who really has the answers? THE AGENDA explores the defining questions of our time and seeks out the stories, solutions and the personalities who might just hold the answers. Discover the mould-breakers experimenting with new ways to approach some of the modern world’s most fundamental issues; find out what happens when bold ideas and real life collide, and meet the leaders whose thoughts and actions are themselves helping to shape the agenda.