WPR Articles April 29 — May 6
Last week’s meeting between India and Pakistan’s foreign secretaries may not have led to any breakthroughs, but it still reflected Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s perseverance to engage with Pakistan. To his credit, Modi has shown resolve by resisting familiar challenges to talks with Islamabad.
On Monday, the U.S. and Senegal signed a deal to facilitate U.S. troop access to the West African country, in the latest example of the American military’s expanding presence in Africa. With threats from the Islamic State, Boko Haram and Al-Qaida in the Maghreb, U.S. involvement will only deepen.
Last week, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet gave a speech on the need for Chile to create a “post-copper economy.” In an email interview, Leonardo Letelier, the director of the Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Chile, discussed the impact of the commodities bust on Chile’s economy.
Opposition to Israel’s policies is increasingly taking on the ugly tenor not just of anti-Zionism, but also of anti-Semitism, creating a divide between the anti-Israel left and the Zionist left. Rarely has this problem been clearer than during the U.K.’s Labour Party recent anti-Semitism scandal.
The 13th Summit of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation captured media attention around the world recently for its anti-Iranian rhetoric, which was likely pushed by Saudi Arabia. It was the latest move in Riyadh’s aggressive diplomacy against Tehran, but will it yield concrete returns?
A bill recently introduced in Congress proposes getting rid of the Defense Department’s much-criticized Quadrennial Defense Review and replacing it with two other classified strategy documents. To an extent, criticisms of the QDR are warranted, but simply throwing it out may not be the best option.
In this week’s Trend Lines podcast, WPR’s Judah Grunstein and host Peter Dörrie discuss violence in Nagorno-Karabakh, U.N. cease-fire monitoring, and West Africa’s regional anti-Boko Haram force. For the Report, David Brown discusses Vietnam’s leadership battles and prospects for economic growth.
Recent polls show 45 percent of Britons in favor of staying in the EU. In Scotland that figure is higher, with some polls putting it at up to 70 percent. Not surprisingly, the specter of a new Scottish independence referendum has been raised as another potential risk of the U.K. voting for a Brexit.
In mid-April, the Ugandan government admitted that the country’s only functioning cancer treatment machine had broken earlier that month. The episode illustrated the larger problems in global health around issues of technology transfers and long-term commitments to keep that technology working.
Most observers of the DRC believe President Joseph Kabila intends to disregard a constitutional term limit and cling onto power past November, potentially unleashing serious violence. This means there will be a major crisis in the country before the end of 2016, and nobody knows what to do about it.
Earlier this year, the U.S. Congress passed the Electrify Africa Act, which continues funding for “Power Africa,” an initiative aiming to expand power-generation capabilities across the continent. In an email interview, Ilmi Granoff discussed the state of Power Africa and power generation in Africa.
Gaza will become “uninhabitable” by 2020, according to U.N. reports, and a political stalemate between ruling Hamas and rival Fatah seems as intractable as the Palestinian-Israeli conflict itself. Hamas has three main options to break the deadlock, but none are desirable for the Islamist party.
Five years after the killing of Osama bin Laden, the U.S. public seems to understand that the fight against terrorism is here to stay. The challenge for governments is to manage the threat without exacerbating it, or allowing terrorism to monopolize time and resources at the expense of other needs.
Five years after Cote d’Ivoire’s 2011 post-election crisis came to a bloody end, the trial of former First Lady Simone Gbagbo for crimes against humanity is set to open this month in Abidjan—a first for an Ivoirian court. Yet justice and human rights advocates are hardly rejoicing.
Last month, during a visit to Jerusalem, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to expand cyberdefense cooperation. In an email interview, Emanuel Shahaf, CEO of Technology Asia Consulting, discussed Israel’s ties with Singapore.
Last month, Solonandrasana Olivier Mahafaly became prime minister of Madagascar after Jean Ravelonarivo resigned due to disagreements with President Hery Rajaonarimampianina. In an email interview, Richard R. Marcus discussed politics and political reconciliation in Madagascar.
The recent revelation of a hit squad within Honduras’ police, tasked with carrying out assassinations of law enforcement officials, confirmed widely held suspicions of police abuse. Yet the likely consequence of these revelations is not a police overhaul, but a bigger role for Honduras’ military police.
Venezuela’s unraveling is gathering speed. The country is now on course for an extended period of uncertainty, with a possibly dangerous outcome lying in wait. This does not come as a surprise. Anyone watching the country’s trajectory could see disaster coming. The question now is, How will this end?
In this week’s Trend Lines podcast, WPR’s Judah Grunstein and Frederick Deknatel discuss Honduras’ police scandal, transitional justice in Cote d’Ivoire, and Turkey, Syria and Iraq’s Kurds. For the Report, Khaled Hroub joins us to talk about Hamas’ options for ending Gaza’s isolation.
Growing disorder has created the possibility for major changes to the status of Kurdish minorities in Iraq, Turkey and Syria, with Kurds emerging as critical actors in providing security and stability. However, with internal challenges and unending battles, recent self-confidence has also been punctured.
Recent developments in Iraq and Syria suggest the tide has slowly turned in the fight against the so-called Islamic State. But rather than standing pat on its current approach, the United States should take a hard look at its strategy and think about how the conflict might unfold in the coming years.