OPINION

Latest Opinions

  • The Political Deconfliction of Russia and the United States in Afghanistan

    Beyond looming questions over Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential elections, the future of U.S.-Russia relations hangs in the balance over conflicting interests in Ukraine, Syria, and Afghanistan. On Ukraine, the recent standoff between Russian and Ukrainian vessels in the Kerch Strait has led to the cancellation of the bilateral between presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. On Syria, although there has been no political consensus on Bashar ...
  • Refocusing on the G20 Policy Agenda: Beyond the Summitry Show

    The Group of Twenty (G20) annual summit, this year hosted by Argentina in Buenos Aires, has just ended. As the media, experts, diplomats, leaders, and their entourages make a swift exit, citizens are left to wonder what the G20 actually does, apart from serve for photo-ops and reality-TV style analysis, like a who’s hot and who’s not of global diplomacy. The Twitterization of political coverage has benefits and disadvantages, but the lack of depth-of-analysis from media ...
  • How did China Become the World’s Second Economic Power?

    China has become the world’s second economic power in four decades, to the astonishment of many observers and thanks mainly to four factors. The first is Deng Xiaoping’s opening-up-to-the-world policies and the 1979 Equity Joint Venture Law. Together they have allowed (among other things) foreign capital and Western companies to enter China, transforming the domestic economic landscape entirely from one that is traditional and obsolete to one that is dynamic and modern. ...
  • BRICS Innovations Lay Fertile Grounds for a Dynamic Enterprising Future

    On an optimistic note one can say confidently that  BRICS as “Rising Powers” acknowledged the importance of creating timely innovations in a hot pursuit dynamic movement approach geared to provide essential solutions for critical “crises situations”. In this article I will concentrate on three (Brazil, Russia and China) with due consideration of others. According to the well-known economist Joseph Schumpeter “carrying out innovations is the only function which is ...
  • Jair Bolsonaro: the Brazilian Trump-Duterte mashup

    Next October, Brazilians will be casting their votes for president. Jair Bolsonaro is one of the main candidates in the dispute, second on all polls and behind only former President Lula – who is currently in jail. For those with little or no idea of who he is or stands for, one simplified way would be: imagine if presidents Donald Trump and Rodrigo Duterte inhabited the same mind. Jair Bolsonaro’s current political visibility belongs to the same zeitgeist in which ...
  • China vs. the West: An Analysis of the Current Geoeconomic Tug Of War 

    The Dragon is awakening, and the world is trembling The Dragon woke up making the whole world tremble. Nothing shakes China, not even the 2008 financial crisis during which its model was seen as an alternative model savior. China continues to display insolent growth and impudent arrogance. China’s success challenges and fuels many curiosities. Indeed, here is a Confucian state, which is not formally a Western liberal democracy, officially communist, that has become the ...
  • Approaching the 10th BRICS Summit: Leveraging the Trump ‘Trade War’ into New Initiatives?  

    As the 10th official summit of the BRICS approaches in Johannesburg, South Africa on July 25-27 there is much to be impressed by. Long gone is the image of the BRICS as the creation of Jim O’Neill and Godman Sachs back in 2001. Instead of a volatile phenomenon, dependent on rates of economic growth, the BRICS has sustained its shape as a club with a significant diplomatic personality. Indeed the fact that at the the 2011 Sanya summit, South Africa joined the club along ...
  • ASEAN: Is it a Successful Sustainable Model for Other Key Actors?

    When ASEAN came into official existence in 1967 a pessimistic environment has surrounded its establishment. Bilahari Kausikan a prominent Singaporean diplomat described its unconducive vulnerable regional setting in the following terms: Consider the situation in 1967. All five ASEAN countries faced Chinese- inspired, if not directly-backed, internal Communist insurgencies…At the same time, almost every member of the five original ASEAN members were at the other’s throat. ...
  • Sino-Russia Relations in the Era of Great Power Politics

    President Putin made an official state visit to China to attend the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a regional economic and security organization that includes China and Russia along with other South and Central Asian countries. Its head of states meeting took place in the coastal city of Qingdao. Before the summit, Putin had bilateral meetings with the Chinese leadership in Beijing, including President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang. ...
  • A Resurgent Russia and A Rising UAE in the Gulf

    During a working visit to Russia in last week, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, concluded a Declaration of Strategic Partnership with his host, Russian president Vladimir Putin. The elevation in bilateral ties aims to strengthen cooperation in various dimensions, including oil market stability and combatting terrorism. Given that this declaration is a first for Russia in the Gulf, it implies that the United Arab Emirates has become ...