A stable world order is a rare thing. When one does arise, it tends to come after a great convulsion that creates both the conditions and the desire for something new. It requires a stable distribution of power and broad acceptance of the rules that govern the conduct of international relations. It also needs skillful statecraft, since an order is made, not born. And no matter how ripe the starting conditions or strong the initial desire, maintaining it demands creative diplomacy, functioning institutions, and effective action to adjust it when circumstances change and buttress it when challenges come. Continue reading →
On December 11 Japan’s Kyodo News Agency reported that “Japan plans to effectively upgrade its helicopter carriers to enable them to transport and launch fighter jets.” Concurrently the Indian Ministry of Defence noted that in the course of a large exercise being held in India by the US and Indian air forces, “two military pilots from Japan are also taking part in the exercise as observers.” There was also a Reuter’s account of Tokyo’s plans “to boost defence spending over the next five years to help pay for new stealth fighters and other advanced US military equipment.” Continue reading →
“According to military envoys, Russian authorities have made a decision (and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro did not object) to deploy strategic aircraft to one of Venezuela’s islands in the Caribbean Sea, which has a naval base and a military airfield. Ten years ago, Russian experts and Armed Forces commanders had already visited the island of La Orchila, located 200 kilometers northeast of Caracas. Venezuelan laws prohibit the setup of military bases in the country, but a temporary deployment of warplanes is possible,” reported Russian state news agency TASS. Continue reading →
Head of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran Ali Akbar Salehi / Getty Images
U.S. intel: Iran, Russia, China leading cyber charge against U.S.
Senior Iranian leaders on Thursday signaled the country is on the brink of restarting its contested nuclear weapons program, disclosing the Islamic Republic is prepared to restart the full-scale enrichment of uranium, the key component in a nuclear weapon, if it does not continue to receive cash windfalls from European countries still committed to the landmark nuclear agreement. Continue reading →
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries – the oil market institution that has exerted an unyielding power over the price of crude for nearly 60 years – is now in deep crisis. The latest OPEC meeting in Vienna offered new insights into the cartel’s raging civil war that is tearing it apart and threatens to ultimately make the cartel irrelevant.
In a two-year period since the group of 15 major oil producers formed an alliance with Russia, OPEC’s smaller members have been marginalized, their voices have been diminished and Saudi Arabia seems to prioritize its partnership with Moscow above all else. An unlikely partnership between Saudi Arabia and Russia is causing dissension within OPEC, with one of the oldest members announcing it would withdraw from the organization in January just days prior to the talks. With Russia tightening its grip over OPEC’s decisions and the United States officially reaching net oil exporting status in late November for the first time in decades, even if only briefly, the new world oil order is now dependent on three energy superpowers: Saudi Arabia, Russia and the United States. Continue reading →
Chinese People’s Liberation Army troops practice marching as they arrive at Tiananmen Gate for a military parade on Sept. 3, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Andy Wong/Getty Images)
China’s economic advancement is allowing it to develop a powerful, and threatening military force
China’s People Liberation Army (PLA) has expanded significantly under Chinese leader Xi Jinping, who demands for the Chinese military to be “accelerating toward informatization.” The annual Department of Defense report regarding China detailed the PLA’s recent developments.
Xi says that now is a “period of strategic opportunity,” while military officials set the objective of winning “informatized local wars.” The word “informatize” is similar to the word “industrialize,” means that all aspects of warfare must be computerized. Continue reading →
People take pictures of the first freight train from Shenzhen to Minsk, capital of Belarus, that set out of Yantian Port in Shenzhen in May 2017. Photo: Reuters / stringer
Russia’s embrace of the Far East and other parts of Asia is proceeding with a symbiotic embrace of China’s New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative
The concept of Greater Eurasia has been discussed at the highest levels of Russian academia and policy-making for some time. This week the policy was presented at the Council of Ministers and looks set to be enshrined, without fanfare, as the main guideline of Russian foreign policy for the foreseeable future.
President Putin is unconditionally engaged to make it a success. Already at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum in 2016, Putin referred to an emerging “Eurasian partnership” Continue reading →
A tiny Chinese microchip may have infiltrated numerous American governmental and military systems, giving insight into how several specific Bible prophecies could come to pass.
It isn’t hard to imagine a time in the near future when great numbers of Americans take to the streets. Maybe the trigger would be another divisive presidential election, with half the nation refusing to accept four more years of an administration they loathe. Maybe the trigger would be impeachment hearings or a particularly controversial decision by “Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court,” such as restricting abortion.
Whatever the spark, it isn’t hard to imagine America’s intensifying domestic tensions exploding into mass riots. Continue reading →
Russia “paved the way” for last November’s seizure of Ukrainian Navy ships by launching a major cyber attack and disinformation campaign aimed at Ukraine, according to a cyber security firm and the European Union. In what has become known as the Kerch Strait incident of November 25, border service coast guard vessels belonging to the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) opened fire on three Ukrainian Navy ships that were attempting to enter the Sea of Azov through the Kerch Strait. All three Ukrainian vessels, along with crews totaling 24 sailors, were captured by the Russian force and remain in detention. Ukraine condemned Russia’s action as an act of war and declared martial law in its eastern and southern provinces. But Moscow said the incident had been caused by a provocation by the Ukrainian government, in a desperate effort to increase its popularity at home. Meanwhile, the three Ukrainian ships and their crews remain in Russia. Continue reading →
Russia is now the world’s second-largest arms producer, overtaking Britain and moving behind only the United States, researchers said Monday.
The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said in a report sales of arms and military services totaled $398.2 billion in 2017. The figure, which excludes China because of a lack of available data, is 2.5 percent higher than it was the previous year and 44 percent higher than it was in 2002. Continue reading →
This map shows the approximate locations of US, British, Chinese and Russian aicraft carriers and carrier strike groups. SouthFront: Analysis & Intelligence tracks locations of these aircraft carriers using the available open-source information. No classified information was used in production of the map. Continue reading →
The tensions between Moscow and Washington continue to escalate.
Two Russian Tu-160 strategic bombers, dubbed the “white swan,” was part of a fleet of aircraft that arrived at the Simon Bolivar International Airport in Maichetia, Venezuela, today after a flight of more than 6,200 miles. Continue reading →
The advanced Sukhoi Su-57 multipurpose jet, Russia’s first domestically produced fifth-generation stealth fighter, will be armed with new hypersonic missiles, according to a Russian military source.
“In accordance with Russia’s State Armament Program for 2018-2027, Su-57 jet fighters will be equipped with hypersonic missiles,” a Russian defense industry source told TASS news agency on December 06.
“The jet fighters will receive missiles with characteristics similar to that of the Kinzhal missiles, but with inter-body placement and smaller size,” the source added. Continue reading →
‘The pace of expansion has been explosive’ for China’s new yuan-denominated oil futures contract.
Less than a year after China launched an oil futures contract denominated in the Chinese currency, the contract is beginning to be embraced by global commodities traders.
The Chinese Communist Party has long desired to see the United States dollar sidelined and the Chinese currency, the yuan, take on a more central role in global finance. The latest major push toward that goal came on March 26 when China launched a new oil futures contract on the Shanghai International Energy Exchange denominated in yuan. Now the contract is finding increasing acceptance among multinational commodity traders, which could threaten the dollar’s position. Continue reading →
Smaller banks have been encouraged to establish secondary arrangements for processing bank card transactions.
Preparing for new U.S. sanctions “early next year” that will likely target Russia’s access to the SWIFT international banking system—something that was just described as a “nuclear option” against Moscow just earlier this week—the Bank of Russia has urged the country’s smaller banks to prepare for a “worst-case scenario.” Continue reading →