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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “Russia”

The Secret History Of The Russian Consulate In San Francisco

The first thing you need to understand about the building that, until very recently, housed the Russian Consulate in San Francisco — a city where topography is destiny, where wealth and power concentrate, quite literally, at the top — is its sense of elevation. Brick-fronted, sentinel-like, and six stories high, it sits on a hill in Pacific Heights, within one of the city’s toniest zip codes.

Read Here – Foreign Policy

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The Arctic, From Romance To Reality

Today, the Arctic landscape is not just dramatic, but dramatically transforming. Temperatures are increasing at alarming rates worldwide, but warming in the Arctic is happening twice as fast as the global average. According to a 2017 report by the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program (AMAP), the extent and thickness of sea ice continue to decrease. If predictions become reality, the Arctic Ocean could be mostly ice-free during the summer months in as little as 20 years. The implications of this unprecedented change in the Arctic are far-reaching, with social, political, economic, and environmental impacts rippling not just through the region, but globally.

Read Here – TheWilson Quarterly

Also Read: Languages Of the Arctic

Trump Isn’t Sure If Democracy Is Better Than Autocracy

What a difference a couple of decades make. Back in the early to mid-1990s, Americans (and some others) were pretty much convinced that U.S.-style liberal democracy was the wave of the future worldwide…Fast-forward to 2017, however, and autocracy seems back in vogue. Russia has reverted to de facto dictatorship, Chinese President Xi Jinping has consolidated more power than any leader since Mao, and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has undertaken a wide-ranging purge of potential opponents and consolidated vast power in his own hands.

Read Here – Foreign Policy

How India’s Battle With Climate Change Could Determine All Of Our Fates

Of all the most polluting nations – US, China, Russia, Japan and the EU bloc – only India’s carbon emissions are rising: they rose almost 5% in 2016. No one questions India’s right to develop, or the fact that its current emissions per person are tiny. But when building the new India for its 1.3 billion people, whether it relies on coal and oil or clean, green energy will be a major factor in whether global warming can be tamed.

Read Here – The Guardian

Drinking Vodka With Zhukov, Talking Basketball With Khrushchev

On July 4 Khrushchev arrived at Spasso House, the Moscow home of the American ambassador, as if he did not have a care in the world. He had begun to make a habit of dropping in on national-day receptions, his way of telling the world that a new day was dawning in the Soviet Union.

Read Here – Tablet

Meet The UAE’s Most Important Ambassador

The first time he spoke in public, Omar Saif Ghobash spent months preparing. As the United Arab Emirates’ ambassador to Russia, he had needed special permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to deliver remarks at the University College London — unheard of at the time as Emirati diplomats rarely spoke to the media. Ghobash walked onto the stage in March 2013, certain, he says, someone would be listening for errors.

Read Here – Ozy

The Vietnam War Transcript Trump Needs To Read

The 18-hour Vietnam retrospective unspooling on PBS is filled with powerful words and images…Curiously, it is a piece of the past that is not in the documentary that is, for me, both a chilling forewarning of what is to come and a significant lesson for leaders who are today faced with a dilemma out of which there is no clear path. I doubt Donald Trump has any profound thoughts on the Vietnam War or any interest in its teachings, but his advisers would do well to read it, Jeff Greenfield writes in Politico.

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The Worldwide Struggle To Claim Cyber Sovereignty

much like economic globalisation and interdependence has slowly eroded the traditional concept of sovereignty, so has the expansion of the global internet. The physical infrastructure of cyberspace – the undersea fiber optic cables – is likely to continue connecting nations for trade and economic inclusion in global markets. But governments across the political spectrum – from Russia and China to Western liberal democracies – are now seeking to impose their sovereign authority on the content and data that transverse their borders across those very cables.

Read Here – The Cipher Brief

The Return Of The Madman Theory

Is Donald Trump reviving the “madman theory” of diplomacy, introduced by Richard Nixon to instill fear in America’s adversaries? North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s description of Trump as “mentally deranged” suggests that such a ploy might be working – or else Kim is more right than he, or the rest of us, would like.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

An Era Of Authoritarian Influence?

For two decades after the end of the Cold War, the direction of international influence was clear: it radiated from liberal democracies outward, as the West sought to spread its model of governance around the world. With the help of Western-led democracy promotion, the thinking went, authoritarian states would be relegated to the dustbin of history. That has changed. In recent years, authoritarian states have boldly sought to influence Western democracies.

Read Here – Foreign Affairs

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