Spotlight on Geopolitics

Archives for Asia

Whilst Vladimir Putin concentrates on the state of the domestic economy, minimising the negative effects of last summer’s devastating fires, president Medvedev has geopolitics and trade high on his agenda. On September 22nd Medevedev put to rest the prospect of a Moscow – Teheran axis by deciding not to sell S-300 missiles, tanks, helicopters and… » read more

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Ninoy Aquino Visits the US

This summer, Benigno Aquino III won the presidency of the Philippines in a landslide election which ended the corrupt term in power of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Corruption, according to the new president, eats up to a fifth of the Philippines’ GDP, in a country of widespread poverty (a third of Filipinos live below the poverty line),… » read more

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Iraq’s power vacuum

More than six months since citizens voted in the country’s second parliamentary elections since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Iraq is still without a government. Although no political bloc had won an outright majority, the secular Shiite Al Iraqiya alliance won most seats, two more than the sectarian Shiite alliance headed by the current premier… » read more

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Confronted with the waning of US influence in world affairs, American foreign policy experts and military strategists are currently fanning the flame of conflict between China and ASEAN nations on the one hand, and between China, Japan and Taiwan on the other. Such diplomatic moves have prompted an angry official reaction from Beijing yesterday. China’s… » read more

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Amid bombings and killings, low turn-out and allegations of large-scale ballot stuffing, the fourth post-Taliban elections took place on Saturday in Afghanistan. The official results are not yet known, but all the main foreign actors present in Afghanistan were – according to The Economist – quick to hail the elections’ “success”. The reason ? These… » read more

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Nation-building fiasco

The 2003 military action against Saddam Hussein’s regime was supposed to lessen the danger, for the West and especially for Israel, of state-sponsored terrorism. If the military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan were successful however, what followed could rightfully be called a fiasco. As of this month, for example, oil-rich Iraq has become a parliamentary… » read more

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Consider for a moment the following scenario. The leaders of Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt and Sudan decide to create an African economic comunity. By putting aside their historical differences, they adopt the necessary institutional framework, prompting a boom in investment, exports and jobs. These developments attract resource-poor, cash-rich Britain. On the basis of its… » read more

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A Feeling of Deja vu

By now, the scenario employed against Greece, Portugal and Spain by New York-based international financial scoundrels is all too familiar to anyone who recalls the events of the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis. Then, as now, hedge funds targeted a country whose GDP was largely dependent on tourist dollars – Thailand – and had fiscal problems… » read more

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The APEC summit ended this Sunday in Singapore, concluding an 8-day talks marathon between its 21 member nations’ political leaders. The summit’s final declaration included a pledge to create a comprehensive “new growth paradigm” for the region, in order to avoid “growth as usual” strategies. (Vancouver Sun) One of the most dynamic economic regions in… » read more

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How China Made It to the Top

On the eve of the celebrations marking the 60th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China, Geneva-based professor Zhang Wei-Wei felt compelled to summarize for Western audiences the principles which he believes explain China’s successful modernization drive. In an op-ed published by The New York Times on September 30, he states that when China opened… » read more

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