An excerpt from Roland Paris’ open letter to Canada’s next Prime Minister.
How did we get to this point in eastern Ukraine? And how can we prevent it from escalating further?
Netanyahu thinks the deal would pave Iran’s path to the bomb. But negotiations are the only way to avoid nuclear trip wires.
Pluralism is key to the region. As ISIS threatens minority groups, we must not underestimate the importance of their protection.
As Russians mourn the murdered opposition leader, Jeremy Kinsman reflects on what his death symbolizes in the country’s battle for democracy.
In the wake of Snowden, governments scrambled to secure their data by regaining “technological sovereignty”. That approach misses the point.
The hardest job in Afghanistan
Afghan police officers aren’t just fighting the Taliban. They are also fighting for the loyalty of the people. Not an easy job when they are regularly killed, largely illiterate, underpaid (when they are paid at all), often abuse drugs and widely reputed to be on the take or working directly with the Taliban. From the NYT Mag.
Want to overthrow the North Korean government? Don’t bother with drone strikes or tanks. Just give the people bootleg episodes of Friends and Judd Apatow comedies. At least that’s what the North Korea Strategy Center, which annually smuggles around 3,000 USB drives filled with foreign media into the country, is trying to do. From Wired.
What began as a rebellion against the Assad regime in Syria has become something else: a war against ISIS, a war against Nusra, a battlefield for Shia Iran and Sunni Gulf Arab states to vie for regional dominance. “Many rebels are now struggling to navigate a civil war advancing every agenda except the one they took up arms for.” From Financial Times.
An interview with Aimen Dean, a founding member of al-Qaeda who became a British spy in 1998. “There is no single process of radicalisation. Some people, it took them years to be convinced of coming to the jihad and some people it took them minutes… They all want martyrdom and redemption and to various degrees.” From BBC News.
How not to fight extremism
The Boko Haram rebellion in Nigeria is a cautionary tale of how not to respond to a domestic insurgency, writes Geoffrey York. The Nigerian government should have tackled root causes: poverty, corruption, repression and regional neglect. Instead, it gave its corrupt secure forces free rein to terrorize the population. From the Globe and Mail.
Hedgehog or Fox?
When it comes to foreign policy, is Stephen Harper a hedgehog, which knows one big thing (in Harper’s case, economic diplomacy), or a fox, which knows many things? Madelaine Drohan doesn’t like either analogy. She think Harper is more of a Wolverine, “tenacious and aggressive in the face of much larger predators.” From the Literary Review of Canada.