China, Africa and Implications for the United States

July 14, 2012 by

China and the United States have surprisingly similar interests in Africa. Both rely increasingly on the continent for oil while China also imports large quantities of minerals. Both seek political support from Africa’s 54 countries, which constitute more than a quarter of the membership of the United Nations. Both see Africa as an increasingly attractive export market, although today the African countries collectively account for a tiny percentage of each country’s global trade.

In Tokyo, the International Community Pledges $16bn for Afghanistan

July 14, 2012 by

The major donor’s conference on Afghanistan in Tokyo attempted to shore up a slew of issues in Afghanistan as the 2014 deadline approaches when coalition forces are scheduled to leave, ostensibly leaving Afghanistan’s nascent security forces on there own. The donor’s conference aimed at setting aid levels for the crucial post-2014 period. The “Tokyo Declaration” adopted at the end of the conference, pledged $16 billion for development projects over the next four years, when most NATO- led foreign combat troops will leave.

Iran Sanctions: War by Other Means

July 14, 2012 by

Now that the talks with Iran on its nuclear program appear to be on the ropes, are we on the road to war? The Israelis threaten it almost weekly, and the Obama administration has reportedly drawn up an attack plan. But in a sense, we are already at war with Iran. Carl von Clausewitz, the great theoretician of modern warfare, defined war as the continuation of politics by other means. In the case of Iran, international politics has become a de-facto state of war.

How UN Peacekeeping in the Eastern DRC Blurs the Line

July 14, 2012 by

United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) peacekeepers have been busy assisting the Congolese brigades over the past week in the fight against rebels known as M23 based in Bunagana. This comes at a crucial time, as the provincial capital of Goma, a military stronghold, may be overrun.