- By Chrisella Sagers
|Please support the Diplomatic Courier in Mission: Small Business!
Progress! We are at 86 of the 250 votes we need – 1/3 of the way there! With the Mission: Small Business grant, we would expand our team, allowing us to bring you more of the best analysis on international events, from elections to summits! But we need your vote before June 30th in order to qualify!
Register to vote by signing in with your Facebook account, search for “Diplomatic Courier,” then click vote next to our name. Thank you very much for your continued support! We look forward to continuing our journey with you!
|The G20: Issues in Focus
From food security and corruption to youth unemployment, the G20 agenda is Los Cabos this weekend is set to aggressively address the failing global structure. Read about all these issues – and more! – in our series, here.
|United Nations: Syria Now in Civil War
For the first time, a UN official referred to the Syrian conflict as a “civil war.” Now, as violence escalates and there seems to be no hope of a peace treaty, the UN is pulling its peacekeeping force out of the country. What is the international community’s next move? Read about it here.
|Storm Clouds on the Horizon: A Possible New Cold War with China
A rising military budget combined with historical memories of colonialism and conquest are making China more and more aggressive about its security. In response, the U.S. pivot toward Asia has become more assertive against Chinese actions, seeking to preserve influence in the region. Is this the recipe for a Cold War between the nations? Read about it here.
|Russia’s Dangerous Nuclear Legacy
Russia can be considered a “failed nuclear post-Soviet state,” as the likelihood of terrorists getting nuclear bomb-making material on the Russian black market is extremely high. What can be done about this? Read about it here.
|U.S. Ambassadors: Local Powerbrokers in Balkans
In the staunchly pro-American Albania and Kosovo, American envoys have so much influence over local politics that some observers believe they have more power than elected governments. Could this hurt relations in the region? Read about it here.
|The Local Mall Under Siege? Why Soft Targets are al Qaeda’s Next Move
Small terrorism attacks can damage a community’s psyche just as much as something like 9/11, and unsecured targets like the local mall could be in the crosshairs. Should Americans call for security checks in public places like this? Read about the issue here.
|The Legacy of Bretton Woods
In 1944, some of the world’s most brilliant minds met in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to hammer out the details of a global economic structure. Today, some say the system is failing and must be redone, but transitioning away from the Bretton Woods System too soon could spell disaster. Read about it here.
Around the Web
After Mali descended into violence, precipitated by returning mercenaries, the foothold of al Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb (AQIM) in the north, and the independence movement of the Tauregs, there has seemed to be little hope of the country returning to stability any time soon. Now, France 24 reports that mujahedin from Afghanistan and Pakistan may be in Mali training fighters. The question echoing throughout the halls of Washington is this: Is Mali the next Afghanistan?
China sent its first astronauts into space in 2003, but so far, all their space explorers have been men. Today, that changed, as 33-year-old air force pilot Liu Yang became the first Chinese woman were sent into space. “It is the speed with which China is ticking off these boxes in developing their program that is interesting,” said Jeff Kueter to the New York Times.
Saudi Arabia is left today without an apparent successor to the 89-year-old King Abdullah, as Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud died while traveling outside the country for medical tests. His death comes at a time when the Saudi monarchy already feels pressed on all sides by anti-authoritarian revolutions across the Middle East, growing confrontation with Iran, and rising calls within the Kingdom to allow women to drive. Prince Nayef had a personal hand in the latter issue, staunchly defending the religious edicts that forbid women to drive throughout protests.
This Week in History
1215: King John puts his royal seal on the Magna Carta, making the “Great Charter” official. The historic document, a peace treaty between King John and the feudal barons below him, is today pointed to as the cornerstone of democratic development in England and later the United States. It guaranteed that the king would respect feudal rights and privileges, including the right to property; uphold the freedom of the church; and maintain the nation’s laws – in sum, it established the sovereignty of the rule of law. This did not help the barons at the time, however, because King John ignored his obligations, and civil war broke out later in the year.
1987: U.S. President Ronald Reagan delivers his iconic speech at the Berlin Wall, saying, “Secretary General Gorbachev, if you seek peace -if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe – if you seek liberalization: come here, to this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate. Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” Reagan is popularly credited with staring down the Soviet Union and forcing it to spend itself into bankruptcy; historians have argued this point, saying that the beginning of the end for the USSR can be pinpointed at Mr. Gorbachev’s introduction of glastnost and perestroika.