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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “Politics”

Sri Lanka President Dissolves Parliament, Sets January Snap Poll

Sri Lanka‘s President Maithripala Sirisena has dissolved the country’s parliament and declared a snap election on January 5, hours after his coalition admitted that it could not muster enough parliamentary support for its designated prime minister. The move on Friday was the latest twist in a protracted political crisis triggered by the president’s shock move last month to sack Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and replace him with Mahinda Rajapaksa, a controversial former president.

Read Here – Al Jazeera

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Populism’s Common Denominator

What unites supporters of authoritarian, upstart politicians like US President Donald Trump and Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro is revulsion against the corruption of the political process. But voters will learn the hard way that strongman rule exacerbates rather than mitigates corruption.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

Deconstructing Trump’s Foreign Policy

It is possible to think two things at once: that U.S. President Donald Trump’s foreign policy has been “bad,” which many think it has been, and that it has offered a somewhat coherent alternative for how the United States should conduct itself beyond its borders. This suggests that the casual and smug dismissals of Trump, on domestic and foreign policy alike, are missing something important.

Read Here – Brookings

Is A Thaw Coming In US-China Relations?

The news about U.S.-China relations has been decidedly negative lately, particularly since U.S. Vice President Mike Pence’s fiery speech criticising the Chinese government on October 4. But now, amid the trade war and continuing tensions in the South China Sea, there are glimmers of hope for a thaw.

Read Here – The Diplomat

Hun Sen’s Power Paradox

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen is continuing to push the limits of personal power consolidation. While his strategies have been highly successful so far, they are likely to result in greater political insecurity in Cambodia. Several concerning developments have emerged in 2018. Since the Supreme Court banned the main opposition party — the Cambodia National Rescue Party, or CNRP — in November 2017, Hun Sen has further consolidated his power by appointing family members to top government positions.

Read Here – East Asia Forum

With Public Opinion Now “Swinging Towards Remain”, May’s Deal Looks Less Likely Than Ever

Is the United Kingdom swinging against Brexit? That’s the conclusion of a 20,000-person mega-poll by Survation for Channel 4, which finds that Remain leads Leave by 54 to 46 per cent. The poll comes with the warm glow of being produced by the one traditional polling company to get the 2017 election result right, and also its size, but it is, of course, just one poll. It does, however, echo the general shift towards Remain that most polls have shown.

Read Here – New Statesman

The Only Responsible Choice Is A Democratic U.S. Congress

Since Donald Trump was sworn in as president in January 2017, he has put America’s democratic system under constant assault. The country has learned that, by itself, the Constitution is not enough to sustain effective and responsible government. This requires, in addition, norms of restraint and good conduct. The president hasn’t just neglected to abide by those norms: He has mocked and repudiated them.

Read Here – Bloomberg Opinion

How Estonia Secures Its Electronic Elections From Kremlin Attacks

Americans fret a lot about the threat of a crippling cyber attack. But the small European country of Estonia lived through one, a 2007 Kremlin-led effort to destabilize the country by attacking government websites. Yet the experience only strengthened Estonians resolve to extend digital service to its people, most notably electronic voting.

Read Here – Defense One

Regional Risks Of Rising U.S.-Iran Rivalry

The U.S. is pursuing a “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran that includes the re-imposition of key energy and banking sanctions. With Tehran refusing to capitulate over its nuclear program or regional policies, the U.S.-Iran rivalry could escalate across the region.

Read Here – International Crisis Group

Asian Rivalries And The Sri Lankan Constitutional Crisis

Sirisena’s move may seem puzzling, especially because he was elected to move his country back toward greater democracy after Rajapaksa’s rule between 2005-2015, but ultimately, he is looking after his own interests: He has lost support and has proved unable to wean Sri Lanka off of its debts to China. It is not surprising that he made an “if you can’t beat them, then join them” calculation.

Read Here – The Diplomat

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