Middle East & North Africa

342 Items

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Analysis & Opinions - Bloomberg Opinion

After Oil: Throwing Money at Green Energy Isn’t Enough

| Sep. 17, 2020

The geopolitical and geo-economic forces wrought by the coronavirus pandemic, as examined previously in this series, are likely to slow the transition to a more sustainable global energy mix. Fortunately, the pandemic has also resulted in governments gaining vastly greater influence over whether this shift stalls or accelerates.

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Analysis & Opinions - Bloomberg Opinion

Pandemic Is Hurting, Not Helping, Green Energy

| Sep. 16, 2020

For most people, there was nothing to celebrate when the International Monetary Fund downgraded its outlook for global economic growth in June, anticipating a contraction of 4.9% for 2020. Yet for others, such as the small but persistent group of economists and others known as the degrowth movement,” the Covid-induced economic slowdown has a silver lining.

Different Swedish bank notes and coins.

Sven-Erik Johansson/AP

Analysis & Opinions - Telos

Post COVID-19 Economy: State Capitalism with Expiration Date

| June 25, 2020

As economies begin to orient themselves towards recovery and growth in a post-COVID-19 era, they will first need to disentangle themselves from their prior bedfellows, the state, whose courtship was necessary for survival during the pandemic.  Such bedfellow relationships have become increasingly common as government intervention is urgently needed for economic stabilization. Governments have also embraced their new role with vigor. According to the IMF, as of April 2020, countries have committed around $8 trillion to combat the pandemic and to remedy its ill effects on economies and societies. Decisions about how this money will be spent will undoubtedly recalibrate the logic of capitalism for years to come. 

A satellite view of Djibouti, showing the U.S. Navy’s Camp Lemonnier (bottom) and the People’s Liberation Army Support Base (top).

2020 Google Earth / Maxar Technologies, used with permission.

Paper

Cooperation, Competition, or Both? Options for U.S. Land Forces vis-à-vis Chinese Interests in Africa

| June 2020

This paper responds to a topic from the Army War College’s Key Strategic Issues List, 2018-2020: Evaluate the ramifications of China’s and/or Russia’s interests in Africa for U.S. land forces and suggest options, both to compete and to cooperate, to further U.S. interests.

While U.S. land forces may benefit from competition or cooperation with Chinese elements in Africa, I judge that they possess limited agency to compete or cooperate in the context of these definitions. Therefore, I will take a whole-of-government approach to furthering U.S. interests in Africa vis-à-vis China.

Rupiah coins in Medan, North Sumatra, Indonesia.

Binsar Bakkara/AP

Analysis & Opinions - Global Policy

Closing the Equity Financing Gap during the COVID-19 Crisis: The Emergence of Sovereign Wealth Funds with Expiration Dates

| May 29, 2020

Juergen Braunstein and Sachin Silva argue that sovereign wealth funds may be central to governments' efforts to balance public responsibility with private interests in post-pandemic economies.

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Analysis & Opinions - The New York Times

State Dept. Investigator Fired by Trump Had Examined Weapons Sales to Saudis and Emiratis

| May 18, 2020

The State Department inspector general fired by President Trump on Friday was in the final stages of an investigation into whether the administration had unlawfully declared an “emergency” last year to allow the resumption of weapons sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for their air war in Yemen.

A large refugee camp on the Syrian side of the border with Turkey, near the town of Atma, in Syria’s Idlib province, April 19, 2020.

AP Photo/Ghaith Alsayed

Paper

Syria Redux: Preventing the Spread of Violent Extremism Through Weaponized Populations and Mobile Safehavens

| May 2020

The resurgence of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) or the next evolution of violent extremist ideology will undoubtedly flow from this region. Regional and global actors have protracted the conflict and stymied the peace process. This paper is not an exposé on the plight of Syrian refugees nor is a plea to rebuild Syria. Instead, this paper discusses the national security threat components of weaponized populations and mobile safe havens used by violent extremist organizations and offers policy recommendations to support a long-term strategy to reduce violence in the region, contain these new threats, and set conditions for reconciliation and peace.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, listens to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during their meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia, Thursday, May 17, 2018.

Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

Russia’s Scavenger Diplomacy Is in Full Effect in the Middle East

| May 08, 2020

While most of the world has been on lockdown from the novel coronavirus, the wars and political machinations of the Middle East have continued. Amid this turmoil, Russia has been making steady progress in what State Department spokesman Morgan Ortagus described as its “malign engagement” in the region.

Dr. Justin Jacob runs a sample COVID-19 test inside a mobile testing lab unit that will begin testing in response to the Coronavirus outbreak, Tuesday, April 28, 2020, in Washington.

Andrew Harnik/AP

Analysis & Opinions - Project Syndicate

What Caused the COVID-19 Testing Deficit?

| Apr. 30, 2020

As the divergent experiences of the US and South Korea show, testing can be the difference between disease containment and catastrophe. Rather than relying on national governments to ensure the rapid development, production, and deployment of diagnostics during outbreaks, the world needs a global coordinating platform.