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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

WPR Articles Sept. 15 — Sept. 21

WPR Articles Sept. 15 — Sept. 21

While Courting China, Vietnam Prepares For a Future South China Sea Crisis

By: Gregory Poling | Briefing
Vietnam’s prime minister concluded a six-day visit to China last week, which focused on deepening economic ties that have been strained by spillover from China and Vietnam’s disputes in the South China Sea. But those ties do not come at the expense of Vietnam’s own territorial and maritime claims.

Fragile States and Great Power Rivalry Are Back. Is the U.S. Ready?

By: Judah Grunstein | Column
Two themes will figure prominently for the next American president in managing the challenges to global order and U.S. national security: Applying the lessons learned over the past two decades in dealing with fragile states; and relearning the lessons forgotten from the Cold War about great power rivalry.

Will Obama Re-Link U.S.-Israel Security Relations With Palestine Peace?

By: Ellen Laipson | Column
In the waning months of his administration, U.S. President Barack Obama has worked to demonstrate an unstinting American commitment to Israel’s security. What remains to be seen is to what extent he will emphasize the unfinished business of Palestinian statehood in his remaining time in office.

Obama’s Pragmatism Worked in Latin America. Now It’s Time to Support Democracy

By: Eric Farnsworth | Feature
The Obama administration has labored to show that the U.S. no longer views the Americas through a lens of self-interest, with pragmatism guiding U.S. policy instead. The next president must maintain that shift, but also support democracy, which is now being challenged in parts of the region.

Facing Crisis, EU Leaders Settle for Show of Unity and Vague Proposals

By: Maria Savel | Trend Lines
Last week, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and EU leaders separately acknowledged the many problems facing the EU. But they offered only vague proposals to address them, and the picture of European unity was short-lived. It is going to take a lot more to fix what is broken in the EU.

Canada’s Indigenous Nations Struggle for Balanced Relationship With the State

By: The Editors | Trend Lines
Canada’s justice minister told a meeting of political and indigenous leaders that Canada will adopt the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, but that it cannot be incorporated “word for word” into law. In an email interview, Niigaanwewidam Sinclair discusses indigenous rights in Canada.

Its Economic Role Models in Shambles, What’s Ahead for Latin America?

By: Frida Ghitis | Column
Over the past few decades, Latin America became the very public incubator of new economic models—or at least of flamboyant variations on old ones. But those days are gone. Which country and which model will now set the economic and political tone, and emerge as a leader worth emulating for the region?

The Economy Is the Newest Front in Yemen’s Brutal War

By: Peter Salisbury, Rafat Al-Akhali | Briefing
With the warring parties in Yemen locked in a stalemate on the ground, the battle for the Arab world’s poorest country is moving to a new front: the economy. There are fears that a plan for a new central bank could lead to economic war on Houthi-controlled areas, home to the bulk of the population.

Amid Rumors of Production Freeze, OPEC No Longer Holds Sway Over Oil Prices

By: Thijs Van de Graaf | Briefing
Since August, there have been growing rumors about an oil production freeze by OPEC members and other major oil producers. The deal might be concluded on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum in Algeria in late September. Seasoned oil market watchers will have a strong feeling of déjà vu.

Can the U.S. and China Avoid War in the Asia-Pacific?

By: The Editors | Trend Lines
In this week’s Trend Lines podcast, WPR’s editor-in-chief, Judah Grunstein, and host Peter Dörrie discuss the resignation of Mexico’s finance minister, Gabon’s contested election, and the EU’s Ireland-Apple ruling. For the Report, Hugh White joins us to talk about the risk of war between the U.S. and China.

Can the United States and China Cooperate on Counterterrorism?

By: Steven Metz | Column
For many years Beijing believed it could avoid being targeted by terrorists by staying out of the security affairs of other nations. But this no longer works. While unfortunate, China’s growing terrorism problem provides an opportunity for increased counterterrorism cooperation between China and the U.S.

Gas Finds in Egypt, Israel and Cyprus Redraw the Mediterranean Energy Map

By: Frederick Deknatel | Trend Lines
In recent years, Egypt, Israel and Cyprus have all discovered huge natural gas fields off their coasts, raising export potential and perhaps the prospects for better political ties in the region through new energy partnerships. At least this is the scenario that the United States is hoping for.

Poland’s Climate Change Approach Is All About Protecting Coal

By: The Editors | Trend Lines
As the EU faces pressure to quickly ratify the Paris Agreement, Poland has said it will only do so if it is given special concessions for its coal sector, which it plans on continuing to use for many years. In an email interview, Karolina Jankowska discusses Poland’s climate change policy.

For Obama-Ban Odd Couple, Farewells but No Victory Lap at U.N.

By: Richard Gowan | Column
It is hard to think of two more different leaders than Ban Ki-moon and Barack Obama, who will make their last U.N. General Assembly appearances this week. Yet it is fitting that they will say goodbye together. They have fought for common causes, and stabilized U.S.-U.N. relations on their watch.

The World Health Organization Needs the Funding to Do Its Job

By: Jeremy Youde | Briefing
The impasse in the U.S. Congress over appropriating funds to combat the Zika virus illustrates the challenges that the next American president will face in addressing global health. There is a generalized sense that something needs to be done, but disagreement over who should do what—and who should pay for it.

Weak EU Ethics Rules Exposed by Former Commission Chief’s Goldman Sachs Job

By: The Editors | Trend Lines
The European Commission and its former president, Jose-Manuel Barroso, are under pressure after Barroso recently took a job with Goldman Sachs. Many are calling for Barroso’s pension to be revoked and for stronger EU ethics rules. In an email interview, Daniel Freund discusses the EU’s ethics rules.

Mineral-Rich Mongolia Teeters on the Verge of Bankruptcy

By: J. Berkshire Miller | Briefing
Over the past few years, Mongolia’s once vibrant economy, buoyed by mineral riches, has languished to the point that there are some legitimate concerns that the country is on its way to bankruptcy. The current situation has placed the new government in Ulaanbaatar in an extremely volatile situation.

The Pitfalls of the Pentagon Taking the Lead on U.S. Security Assistance

By: Rachel Stohl | Briefing
Every year, the U.S. spends billions of dollars on foreign military and security assistance through programs run by both the State Department and the Pentagon. But in the past 15 years, the scope and magnitude of the Pentagon’s programs have expanded dramatically. Has foreign policy been militarized?

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