On March 8, officials from South Korea briefed U.S. officials on a recent dinner with Kim Jong-un, which marked the first time South Korean officials had been inside North Korea’s Communist Party headquarters since the Korean War. The South Koreans informed Trump of Kim Jong-un’s desire to have a meeting and Trump agreed.
Last week, we discussed China’s power structure and how the suspension of term limits changes recent precedents. This week, we continue this topic by analyzing China’s challenges while shifting from the world’s high growth/low cost producer to a slower growth, “normal” economy.
The Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party recently announced it would end term limits on president and vice president. Thus, President Xi Jinping will be able to maintain his current position beyond his 2nd term.
In Part I of this report we outlined the geopolitics of Italy and its political economy. This week, we continue the report with an analysis of the upcoming elections and Germany’s impact on the EU, concluding with potential market ramifications.
Trump campaigned on a populist agenda. His “America First” mantra railed against free trade deals, suggesting they were poorly negotiated, supported immigration restrictions and called on allies to shoulder more of the defense burden. In this report, we focus on trade following his first year in office, beginning with a review of American hegemony and trade.
Last week, we reviewed the development of nuclear weapons and US deployment policy from the end of WWII to the end of the Cold War. We analyzed how the theory of deterrence developed and introduced events of the post-Cold War era. This week, we discuss how Cold War arrangements have broken down in the post-Cold War world and the ensuing nuclear proliferation.
Years ago we published a report on nuclear war and civil defense. Since then, we have seen an increase in actual and potential nuclear proliferation. Recent US administrations have reviewed their policies on nuclear weapons and we are seeing a departure from the late Cold War thinking on nuclear policy.
In early December, small protests developed in Iran due to sharp increases in some food prices. By the last week of 2017, the protests had spread across the country and have continued into the New Year. In this report, we discuss the current protests, comparing them to the unrest that developed in the wake of the 2009 elections in Iran.
Two weeks ago, we introduced this report and covered the mass arrests that took place in Saudi Arabia over the weekend of November 4, when several princes and notable figures were detained. The official reason given for the arrests was corruption, but many have speculated that the move was a cover for Mohammad bin Salman (MbS) to consolidate power and purge elements of a potential coup.
Over the weekend of November 4, there were mass arrests in Saudi Arabia, a missile attack and the resignation of Lebanon’s prime minister. Just before that, there was a crackdown on the religious establishment. In this series, we will discuss these events, the broader geopolitics of the region and American foreign policy drift.