Spotlight on Geopolitics

Archives for ASEAN

The current North Korean threat highlights one of the most troubling shortcomings facing today’s Western governments : the almost total inability of diplomacy to help solve such crises. For thousands of years, various states in different periods of history have nurtured the development of a special class of bureaucrats, employed exclusively in the diplomatic service.… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

Superficially at least, the ongoing civil war in Syria appears to highlight the West’s inability, unprecedented for decades, to put a stop to it. Adverse to direct military intervention, President Obama has even ruled out Kosovo-style punitive strikes without the endorsement of Congress. Premier David Cameron’s strident advocacy of military action against Syria has been… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

China and the EU model

For almost two years now I have avoided dealing on my blog with China’s spats with Japan, its tensions with ASEAN partners or its apparent inability to reign in the excesses of its obstreperous North Korean protégé. Although China is fast becoming an economic superpower, its foreign policy has remained far less successful than its… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

EU: going for broke

The 2012 global economic results highlight the unique counterperformance of the European Union among its major trading partners. According to the end of year statistics published by The Economist, even countries like Japan and the United States have managed growth rates of 2 percent or above. The average growth rate for the ASEAN countries reaches… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

The 20th ASEAN summit took place last week in Cambodia. It ended after two days with a Phnom Penh Declaration, which basically reiterates the members’ commitment to establishing the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015. The summiteers were greeted in the capital’s Peace Palace by huge billboards depicting the smiling faces of the Chinese president Hu… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

Last week’s top-level political meetings which took place in Brussels and Hanoi ended up with similar calls on the US to avoid stimulating the American economy by printing more dollars. Trying to stimulate growth by flooding the American banking system with liquidity is only of marginal importance to the US economy’s woes. Yet this is… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

Slowly but surely, EU leaders are waking up to the fact that they should take regional security into their own hands and promote a neighbourhood diplomacy which would eventually have to exclude NATO or the United States, but would be inclusive of Russia and Turkey. This is the new geostrategic context in which the Sarkozy-Merkel-Medvedev… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

The US State Department’s summer diplomatic offensive in South-East Asia has been complemented in Japan by calls to strengthen the US-Japan alliance and to design new collective security structures aimed at containing China. Thus, in a recent article (“Keeping the US engaged in Asia”) published in East Asia Insights, Japanese former deputy foreign minister (LDP)… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi

This week Hanoi hosted the first-ever ASEAN defence ministers meeting plus (ADMM+), attended by 18 defence ministers. The ten ASEAN ministers were joined by their counterparts from China, the US, India, Russia,Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand. The stated aim of the meeting was to create a framework for regional cooperation on security matters.… » read more

Posted by Florian Pantazi