How the U.S. Facilitates the Rise of China and Its Geo-Political Challenges

Edward Luttwak is one of America’s most important strategic thinkers, although less well known to the American public than other ‘strategic celebrities’ such as Henry Kissinger. Luttwak’s recent book, The Rise of China vs. the Logic of Strategy demonstrates his extraordinary grasp of both China and strategic thinking. He argues that China’s rapid increase in […]

Which Way Turkey?

The direction is clear – Turkey is moving towards a state governed by Islamic law and custom. The first round of the election for a new president will be held on August 10. Current Prime Minister Erdogan is a shoo-in. He has consistently moved Turkey in a more conservative direction and has surrounded himself with […]

What Ails South Africa?

South Africa presents a beguiling picture to tourists – mostly. First-world hotels and roads. Efficient air travel. Fashionable restaurants. Extraordinary game parks. Startling scenery. It also has a business friendly government and ranks 41st out of 189 countries in the World Bank’s “Ease of Doing Business” rankings. (It’s ahead of Qatar, Oman and, of course, […]

Obama Foreign Policy—Incompetence Writ Large?

At his West Point speech, President Obama articulated as close as we are likely to get to an ‘Obama Doctrine.’ The United States, he said, “will use military force, unilaterally if necessary, when our core interests demand it — when our people are threatened; when our livelihoods are at stake; when the security of our […]

Russia’s ‘Siege Mentality’

At least four countries seem consumed by a siege mentality – North Korea, Israel, Iran and Russia. That collective cultural state is based on the belief that the rest of the world is implacably hostile and poised to attack or at least force its isolation. A widespread feeling of victimization is powerful. Kim il-Sung had […]

Irredentism and Border Disputes After Crimea: New Sources of Political Risk

Russia has successfully annexed Crimea. It continues to build its troop strength along Ukraine’s eastern border and may yet move to annex Russian populated parts of Ukraine. Russia has flaunted international law and a treaty it had signed with Ukraine and the U.S. to guarantee Ukraine’s territorial integrity. Russia’s imperialist move has increased global political […]

Plenty of Reasons for Pessimism in Ukraine

My mother’s family fled Ukraine for the U.S. in 1921 when Bolshevik troops overran their town, Berdichev, extinguishing an independent Ukraine that had been declared when the Tsar collapsed in 1917. Those who remained did not have a bright future. The Bolshevik troops were savage in executing the wealthy and confiscating property. In the 1930s, […]