There is no doubt that the international nuclear non-proliferation regime entered a new phase in May 2015. The situation has worsened, and it will be more and more difficult and expensive to correct it. The cooling of international relations will make the NPT situation extremely fragile.
Any foreign trip by North Korean leader Kim Jong-il arouses a great deal of interest, as he practically never leaves his country.
It would be counter-productive for Russia to quarrel with its neighbor, let alone to press for its downfall, no matter how much the public might not agree. The bloodshed and misery that the unification of Korea in this way would entail will hardly be excused by North Korea’s far-off future prosperity, or even by Russia’s cooperation with a friendly, neutral and influential country.
The exchange of artillery shells off the Korean Peninsula that seemed to come out of nowhere is fresh evidence of the explosive situation in Asia.
The political intrigue has another side to it, namely, the deterrence of China’s growing ambitions in the Korean peninsula and across the region. The minimum objective is to put Beijing in front of a stark choice: whether it prefers to team up with the North Korean “provocateurs” or with the “civilized community.” Whichever option the Chinese may choose, according to the American logic they will find themselves in the losing position.
At a roundtable event in Moscow, top experts debated the “hypocritical” and “insincere” foreign policies of both Russia and the West in the post-Cold War era.
Vladimir Putin has mentioned several times that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a geopolitical mistake. Although these words were often interpreted as his desire to constitute that country, there is little reason to believe this.
The April 16 referendum will focus on power distribution rather than institution building. In other words, the organizers saw it as an opportunity to expand the President’s powers and allow him to rule longer. In their turn, Turks perceived it as an institutional choice to contribute to the development of the state.
If the larger picture defies prediction, the immediate future is scarcely more transparent. In the U.S. case, the known unknowns are numerous. They begin with the question of how much deck furniture Trump is willing to overturn in order to pursue an “America First” strategy.
In the wake of the For Fair Elections protest movement in Russia in 2011-2012, the Kremlin initiated a new strategy of state-society relations that was aimed at diminishing the propensity for protest in the next election cycle.
Belarus’ traditional structural dependence on Russia is increasing, and Minsk’s freedom of maneuver continues to shrink.