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Dec 2016

  • 19 Dec 2016
    Neera Chandhoke
    E-International Relations (E-IR)
    One can argue that the Kashmir region has the right to secede from India, observes Neera Chandhoke, particularly because the Indian Constitution has long denied Jammu’s and Kashmir’s special status. However, Chandhoke also believes that the area’s unqualified right to secede remains morally and politically “troublesome.” Here’s what she means.
  • 19 Dec 2016
    Ryan Griffiths
    E-International Relations (E-IR)
    In recent history there have been 55 secessionist movements around the world, and many more that have not yet mobilized. Yes, it’s possible to say that we are living in an age of secession. But what’s propelling this push for self-determination? Today, Ryan Griffiths highlights three interacting factors – the interests of states; the international recognition regime; and the specific strategies of secessionist movements.
  • 16 Dec 2016
    Jeffrey Gedmin and Simona Kordosova Lightfoot
    Atlantic Council
    So why are some Eastern European countries seemingly less keen on joining NATO than they were in the 1990s? According to, Jeffrey Gedmin and Simona Kordosova Lightfoot it’s because 1) the countries haven’t quickly and easily graduated from the “school of democracy” or embraced democratic capitalism; 2) the US underestimated the impact its disengagement from the region would have, despite 10 years of progress; and 3) Russia has revived a hegemonic, score-settling approach towards its neighbors.
  • 16 Dec 2016
    Jasminder Singh and Muhammad Haziq Jani
    S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS)
    In this text, Jasminder Singh and Muhammad Haziq Jani examine the resurgence of pro-Rohingya jihadists in and around Myanmar. In order to prevent the further recruitment and radicalization of Rohingya refugees, our authors urge affected countries to secure their borders, address the Rohingya’s uncertain citizenship status, and form strategic partnerships with the troubled community.
  • 15 Dec 2016
    Aude Fleurant, Sam Perlo-Freeman, Pieter D Wezeman, Siemon T Wezeman and Noel Kelly
    Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI)
    This SIPRI Fact Sheet lists the top 100 arms-producing and military services companies in 2015 and describes the international arms sales trends that unfolded during the year. Although there was a slight decrease in arms sales revenues when compared to the previous year, profits in 2015 were still 37 per cent higher than in 2002, when SIPRI began recording such data.
  • 15 Dec 2016
    Karol Wasilewski
    Polish Institute of International Affairs (PISM)
    In this paper, Karol Wasilewski analyzes the Turkish government’s newly adopted “total liquidation” strategy against the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). The strategy, which is not risk free, is designed to use combined military, economic and political means in order to put military pressure on the PKK, dry up its sources of funding, and provide financial aid to urban areas that have been hard hit by the ongoing conflict.
  • 14 Dec 2016
    Paul Rexton Kan
    Small Wars Journal
    As Paul Rexton Kan sees it, the importance of prisons beyond their role as sources of punishment is especially relevant when trying to understand their function in narco-states. In these nations, incarceration often translates into empowerment; governance comes as much from the “big house” as the statehouse; and the “micropower” that’s wielded yields both order and disorder.
  • 14 Dec 2016
    Jason Burke
    Combating Terrorism Center (CTC)
    According to Jason Burke, rapid changes in media technology have enabled terrorists to reach large audiences quickly and directly without having to launch large-scale attacks that require significant physical infrastructure. Indeed, thanks in part to the digital revolution, jihadists can now increasingly rely on what the Syrian strategist Abu Musab al-Suri called “individual terrorism.”
  • 13 Dec 2016
    Veli-Pekka Tynkkynen and Olga Kosharnaya
    Center for Security Studies (CSS)
    In this edition of the Russian Analytical Digest, Veli-Pekka Tynkkynen and Olga Kosharnaya focus on the interrelationship between nuclear energy and Russian foreign policy. The first article examines the public debate in Finland over the Russian Rosatom Corporation building the Fennovima nuclear plant. The second article then traces the waning cooperation between Russia and Ukraine on nuclear energy.
  • 13 Dec 2016
    Luke Patey and Helle Malmvig
    Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS)
    What roles have non-Western powers played in Syria? In the case of China, its involvement has been largely confined to vetoing UNSC resolutions that endorse Western military interventions in sovereign states, and worrying about the dangers posed by returning Uyghur fighters. In the case of ‘neutral’ Israel, since 2014 it has stepped up its targeting of Iranian and Hezbollah assets within Syrian territory, and provided quiet assistance to Syrian rebel groups.
  • 12 Dec 2016
    Benno Zogg
    Center for Security Studies (CSS)
    All is not well in the five Central Asian states, argues Benno Zogg. Indeed, the chronic problems that traditionally plagued the region’s authoritarian regimes are now colliding with new geopolitical realities, including 1) Russia’s revived hegemonic zeal; 2) China’s growing leverage outside of Asia; 3) the shifting attitudes of Western states towards Central Asia, and more.
  • 12 Dec 2016
    Daniel Keohane
    Center for Security Studies (CSS)
    Will Germany’s 2016 Defense White Paper push the country into becoming a more prominent actor in international security, particularly when it comes to exercising hard power? Daniel Keohane believes that Germany’s allies would welcome a greater military role on its part, but domestic politics will inevitably dampen what the country will be able to do.
  • 9 Dec 2016
    Karl-Heinz Kamp
    NATO Defense College (NDC)
    In NATO’s 70-year history only seven Strategic Concepts (SC) have appeared – in 1950, 1952, 1957, 1967, 1991, 1999 and, most recently, in 2010. Well, it’s time for another one, says Karl-Heinz Kamp. The ones produced thus far just haven’t been future-oriented enough – i.e., they’ve merely assessed the Alliance’s current status and formalized its already existing procedures. Well, here’s what an SC should really focus on.
  • 9 Dec 2016
    Emily Anagnostos, Jessica Lewis McFate, Jennifer Cafarella, and Alexandra Gutowski
    Institute for the Study of War (ISW)
    As Emily Anagnostos and her colleagues see it, when Mosul falls the political conditions that originally spurred Iraq’s Sunni Arabs to arms will still exist. As a result, the inevitable success of anti-ISIS operations will create a space for other Sunni anti-government actors and armed groups to surge again in 2017. Here’s a description of the “permissive environment” that may soon arise.
  • 8 Dec 2016
    Moeed Yusuf
    War on the Rocks
    Yes we should, argues Moeed Yusuf, because India and Pakistan are the only regional nuclear states in the world that are locked in an acutely crisis-prone relationship. Indeed, a tit-for-tat escalatory dynamic could easily be unleashed in a future crisis which could then lead, for example, to a breach of Pakistani and Indian nuclear security protocols by those seeking access to their arsenals.
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