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Showing posts from June 25, 2017

TRUMP, PUTIN, AND THE NEW COLD WAR

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/03/06/trump-putin-and-the-new-cold-war MARCH 6, 2017 ISSUE What lay behind Russia’s interference in the 2016 election—and what lies ahead? By Evan Osnos, David Remnick, and Joshua Yaffa       The D.N.C. hacks, many analysts believe, were just a skirmish in a larger war against Western institutions and alliances.ILLUSTRATION BY CHRISTOPH NIEMANN 1. SOFT TARGETS On April 12, 1982, Yuri Andropov, the chairman of the K.G.B., ordered foreign-intelligence operatives to carry out “active measures”— aktivniye meropriyatiya —against the reĆ«lection campaign of President Ronald Reagan. Unlike classic espionage, which involves the collection of foreign secrets, active measures aim at influencing events—at undermining a rival power with forgeries, front groups, and countless other techniques honed during the Cold War. The Soviet leadership considered Reagan an implacable militarist. According to extensive notes made by Vasili Mitrokhin, a high-rankin

Nord Stream 2 means gains for Germany but pain for Europe

http://bruegel.org/2017/06/nord-stream-2-means-gains-for-germany-but-pain-for-europe/ The proposed Nord Stream 2 pipeline could destabilise European energy cooperation and offer Gazprom excessive influence in Central and Eastern Europe. These disadvantages do not justify the commercial benefits for German companies. BY:  GEORG ZACHMANN DATE: JUNE 23, 2017TOPIC: ENERGY & CLIMATE    This opinion piece was also published in German in  EnerGate The construction of a new pipeline under the Baltic Sea between Russia and Germany throws up a series of economic, legal and political questions. German politicians face a particular dilemma. The project seems likely to be profitable for Germany itself, but it would worsen the gas supply for Germany’s eastern neighbours. The strategic opportunities that Nord Stream gives Gazprom are particularly worrying. It would make it possible for Gazprom to improve its market position in north-west Europe, offering lower prices to compete against liqui

What if ... Conceivable crises: unpredictable in 2017, unmanageable in 2020?

http://www.iss.europa.eu/publications/detail/article/what-if-conceivable-crises-unpredictable-in-2017-unmanageable-in-2020/ Report  - N o 34 - 19 June 2017 edited by  Florence Gaub Download document In a world increasingly shaped by unexpected events and developments – ranging from ‘strategic surprises’ like 9/11 or the Arab Spring to the unintended consequences of often well-meant decisions – trying to imagine contingencies that challenge current assumptions may well prove a useful exercise. This Report presents a number of grey swan scenarios which are designed to help decision-makers think about possible responses to crises and how they can be prevented. They cover a wide variety of geographical and operational situations while never explicitly calling into question specific EU actions or policies – only general EU principles and interests.

'Conceivable crises': Gray swan scenarios challenge EU crisis response

http://m.dw.com/en/conceivable-crises-gray-swan-scenarios-challenge-eu-crisis-response/a-39440469 From "IS" hijacking a cruise ship in the Mediterranean to a massive right-wing terrorist attack in western Europe, an EU agency has published a report exploring hypothetical scenarios. DW spoke to one of the authors. Earlier this month, the EU Institute for Security Studies (EUISS) published a  report  exploring gray swan scenarios, or hypothetical events that "may seem unlikely now but which could happen at one point in time," which could transform the security situation regionally and even globally. "In a world increasingly shaped by unexpected events and developments - ranging from 'strategic surprises' like 9/11 or the Arab Spring to the unintended consequences of often well-meant decisions - trying to imagine contingencies that challenge current assumptions may well prove a useful exercise," writes EUISS Director Antonio Missiroli in the forew