Monday, November 19, 2018
Security Challenges

The underlying tensions and mistrust at the core of the conflict between Russia and the West

The underlying tensions and mistrust at the core of the conflict between Russia and the West
By Stephanie Liechtenstein

The conflict in Eastern Ukraine is in its fourth year. More than 10,000 people have died so far, and the number of ceasefire violations is on the rise. The humanitarian situation is dire, especially for people living close to the line of contact. The area around the line is polluted with land mines, leading to civilian casualties and making it difficult for farmers to use their land. Moreover, critical infrastructure …

Russia seeks to exploit divisions in the West. But how big is the threat?

By Dmitri Trenin

General Curtis LeMay, chief of staff of the United States Air Force in the early 1960s, once interrupted one of his officers who described the Soviet Union as an enemy. The USSR, LeMay said, was not an enemy, but an adversary. The enemy was the US Navy, the general clarified, referring to the bitter and never-ending rivalry among the US military services.

Definitions matter. Today, Russia is variously and officially …

The Minsk Protocol in the absence of trust

The Minsk Protocol in the absence of trust
By Fyodor Lukyanov

Stock exchange traders know what a Minsky Moment is. It’s when a market fails or falls into crisis after an extended period of market speculation or unsustainable growth. This phenomenon was named for Hyman Minsky, an economics professor famous for arguing that a long bull market tends to end in large collapse.

As we live in a world dominated by a market economy, some concepts seem to apply to political …

World powers are scrambling for influence over Asian maritime routes

By Carlyle Thayer

Security alignments in the Asia-Pacific are quickly hardening in response to China’s rise and regional assertiveness.

These realignments have led to the formation of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, or simply the Quad, which comprises the United States, its two close allies Australia and Japan, and India. The Trump administration’s endorsement of the term “Indo-Pacific” gives these alignments a maritime focus on the sea lanes traversing the Western Pacific, South China …

A mechanism to manage security tensions in the Asia-Pacific region

By Kevin Rudd

As we meet this year at Munich, global tensions are at their highest point since the end of the Cold War. Like much of the rest of the world, Asia saw a number of security crises unfold over the last year. Tensions between China and South Korea flared over Seoul’s deployment of the THAAD missile defense system. The return of maritime tensions in the South China Sea continues to threaten …

Beijing’s plans for a globalization that is more open, inclusive, and beneficial for all

Beijing’s plans for a globalization that is more open, inclusive, and beneficial for all
By Fu Ying

As we enter 2018 and move toward the end of the second decade of the 21st century, the world is witnessing new instabilities and turbulent situations. Having attended forums in Munich, Sochi and Rome in late 2017, I could sense the anxieties in international strategic circles. People were asking: What is happening in the world today? Is our current global system collapsing? Will mankind fall back into confrontations and isolationism?…

China’s relations with its neighbors and the West will define the next world order

By Theo Sommer

For seven decades now, the world’s most perilous flashpoints have all been in Asia: Kashmir, Taiwan and Korea. India and Pakistan fought three bloody wars over Kashmir, in 1947-48, 1963 and 1971, and still face one another at gunpoint in the contested Himalayan region. Beijing’s determination to reunify Taiwan with the mainland has triggered several international crises; in the 1950s US President Dwight D. Eisenhower even considered using nuclear weapons …

North and South Korea are speaking again, but Pyongyang will never give up its nuclear weapons

By Matthias Nass

One can be forgiven for doubting that Kim Jong-un is an “absolutely competent and mature politician,” as Russian President Vladimir Putin has called him. He is rather a cold cynic risking the lives of millions of people to secure his own political survival. Indeed, the sole reason he is amassing a nuclear arsenal is to forestall meeting to same fate as Saddam Hussein or Muammar al-Gaddafi. He is striving for …

China’s long-term strategy for becoming the world’s number one power

By Kishore Mahbubani

When Donald Trump became US president on Jan. 20, 2017, the world could and should have seen a downturn in Sino-American relations. During his election campaign, Trump had criticized China fiercely: “We can’t continue to allow China to rape our country, and that’s what they are doing.” He also declared he would “label China a currency manipulator.”

A year later, in January 2018, it is remarkable how stable the US-China …

India sees the Belt and Road Initiative for what it is: evidence of China’s unconcealed ambition for hegemony

India sees the Belt and Road Initiative for what it is: evidence of China’s unconcealed ambition for hegemony
By Samir Saran

For 73 days between June and August 2017, Indian and Chinese troops were locked eyeball to eyeball over a small strip of land marking the tri-junction between India, Bhutan and China: the Doklam Plateau. The clash was ostensibly triggered by Chinese road construction activities around disputed territories. But military tensions at Doklam are only the symptom, not the cause of conflict. The standoff itself is the naked manifestation of a …