BREWING CHAOS

Kanishkh Kanodia During this epidemic, one of the most fundamental yet frequently overlooked questions policy-makers have had to confront  is drawing the line between ‘essential’ and ‘non-essential’ goods. Their decision determines what can and cannot be sold during lockdowns. The choice surrounding one commodity, in particular, has presented ethical and political quandaries: alcohol. While most nations have permitted the sale of liquor as essential goods … Continue reading BREWING CHAOS

THE AMERICAN PRESENCE IN JAPAN: 60 YEARS IN THE MAKING

Quang Trinh In 2019 and for the majority of the years following World War II, Japan, as opposed to American allies in Western Europe or the Middle East, has hosted the largest concentration of American troops outside of the US border. This should not come as a surprise, since security lies at the cornerstone of U.S-Japan relations. Given Trump’s “America’s First” rhetoric, the continued maritime … Continue reading THE AMERICAN PRESENCE IN JAPAN: 60 YEARS IN THE MAKING

WHY THE RUSSIAN ORDER IN THE MIDDLE EAST IS A HOUSE OF CARDS

By Tim Sadov Until very recently, Russia had complete initiative and momentum for order building in the Middle East. While the Trump administration has scaled back commitments to U.S. allies, the Kremlin has built strategic partnerships with the governments of Egypt, Turkey, Syria, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. And these decisions seem to be paying off. Following the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria in late … Continue reading WHY THE RUSSIAN ORDER IN THE MIDDLE EAST IS A HOUSE OF CARDS

REGIONAL COOPERATION IN SOUTH ASIA: A DREAM OR REALITY?

Kanishkh Kanodia On March 15th, citizens of eight South Asian nations witnessed a historic spectacle: their leaders came together through a virtual conference to formulate a regional strategy in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Initiated by the Prime Minister of India, this conference by SAARC—the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation—came at a time when the collective number of cases in the subcontinent had barely … Continue reading REGIONAL COOPERATION IN SOUTH ASIA: A DREAM OR REALITY?

ZIMBABWE AND THE PERILS OF REVOLUTION

Joe Becker Two and a half years ago, on November 19th, 2017, the once unthinkable happened. Robert Mugabe, at the time one of the oldest dictators in the world, resigned the Presidency of Zimbabwe after more than three decades in power—three decades which had seen the collapse of the Zimbabwean economy, the attempted genocide of the Ndebele people, and the ostracizing of the country to … Continue reading ZIMBABWE AND THE PERILS OF REVOLUTION

SOULS OF SUMPANGO

Jacquelyn Davila The truth is, we never really entered Sumpango, Sacatepequez. It was All Souls’ Day, November 1st, the day before the Day of the Dead, but we did not visit the cemetery. We stopped in the middle of the road and quickly hopped off our ride, a refurbished van that had probably been shipped to Guatemala from Korea. We exited as quickly as a … Continue reading SOULS OF SUMPANGO

THE POLITICS OF OIL

Quang Trinh The coronavirus pandemic would create the worst global economic crisis since the Great Depression, said IMF’s head Kristelina Georgieva. In the midst of the global turmoil, friction escalates between two geopolitical powerhouses: Russia and Saudi Arabia. The battle for arguably the world’s most important commodity, oil, should not come as a surprise. As international travel, commerce, and industrial production decline with the institution … Continue reading THE POLITICS OF OIL

ON CHINA’S RISING SOLAR POWER INDUSTRY

Jia Yu Amidst Tengger desert, an arid and inhospitable territory in China’s Inner Mongolia spanned by 36,700 km of yellow sand, there exists a vast, blue oasis. But to the disappointment of any weary travelers fooled by this mirage, they have stumbled upon not a body of water, but rather the Tengger Desert Solar Park. This Solar Park is an oasis of energy that spans … Continue reading ON CHINA’S RISING SOLAR POWER INDUSTRY

A RUSSIAN-AMERICAN GAME OF CHICKEN IN VENEZUELA

By Tim Sadov Russia has sent troops to Venezuela while the US hasn’t. What explains the disparity in the American and Russian responses to the Venezuela crisis? Steely-nerved tactics in this “game of chicken” are to partly to blame. As the Maduro regime continues to brutally suppress political dissidents and starve its own citizens, the Trump administration continues to oppose the regime and its actions … Continue reading A RUSSIAN-AMERICAN GAME OF CHICKEN IN VENEZUELA

DARFUR: THE LOST CONFLICT

By Quang Trinh From 2003 the Darfur conflict has created one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, long before the fallout of Yemen, Syria, and South Sudan. In 2004, Jan Egeland, the Under-Secretary-General of the UN for Humanitarian Affairs, described the situation as “ethnic cleansing.” The conflict that arose between rebels and government-backed Janjaweed militias over the treatment of non-Arabic ethnic groups in Darfur has … Continue reading DARFUR: THE LOST CONFLICT