World bows to Iran's hegemony
The problem with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to the US Congress was not the risk of offending Washington but Washington's receding relevance. World powers, including China, have elected to legitimize Iran's dominant position, hoping to delay but not deter its eventual acquisition of nuclear weapons. But war cannot be avoided; it is inevitable. (Mar 4, '15)
Tackling Tehran: Netanyahu vs Obama
As negotiations over Iran's nuclear program continued in Europe, Israeli Premier Netanyahu told US Congress he feared the White House was close to striking a "very bad" deal. The absence of dozens of Democrats and the cheers that greeted his warnings of a "nuclear tinderbox" demonstrated the divisive nature of the issue in Washington. - James Reinl (Mar 4, '15)
Obama's nuclear squeeze
Netanyahu's address to the US Congress will have no effect on the future modalities of US-Iran nuclear negotiations. But if he can nudge Congress not to relax sanctions on Iran, even after a nuclear deal, then Tehran might retaliate by reversing some agreed upon issues of those intricate negotiations. - Ehsan Ahrari (Mar 4, '15)
A Chechen role in Nemtsov murder?
For many in Russia and the West, the Kremlin is inevitably the prime suspect in the assassination of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. But the possibility of a Chechen connection should not be dismissed out of hand, given Nemtsov's repeated criticism of Chechen Republic head Ramzan Kadyrov. (Mar 4, '15)
How will Japan’s new agriculture minister influence the TPP negotiations?
Author: Aurelia George Mulgan, UNSW, Canberra Japan’s new Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) Yoshimasa Hayashi, who previously served in the position in 2012–14, was a logical choice to take over from his disgraced predecessor Koya Nishikawa. He arrived at the Prime Minister’s Office (Kantei) only five minutes after Nishikawa left, and was apparently […]
Pirates, spies, soul-stealers: spirituality transformed
Author: Shameem Black, ANU In the past decade the worldwide yoga industry has become a multi-billion-dollar business. Yet, ironically, the one country where yoga does not yet thrive commercially is the very place from which yoga is thought to originate: India. Why should this be? This paradox emerges, in part, because the practice known as […]
Commission impossible for Abe’s foreign policy
Author: Michael Cucek, Temple University Japan On 25 February, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe convened the first meeting of a new special advisory council, the Commission on a Framework for the 21st Century. The rather ambiguously and grandiosely named council is to meet with him over the coming months, presenting the results of their deliberations […]
Creating architecture to sustain Asia’s spectacular progress
Author: Wendy Dobson, University of Toronto Economic institutions, international and national, are key factors in Asian development strategies. Those economies which have exhausted the growth gained from the traditional mobilisation of capital and labour are now reforming the supply-side institutions that encourage new sources of growth from innovation and productivity. Looking to the future, institutions […]
Indonesia’s Forests Disappearing at Record Rates
By Tessa Toumbourou
In early November, less than one month after Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's inauguration, Siti Nurbaya Bakar, the newly installed Environment and Forestry minister, announced that the government would extend an existing moratorium on the issuance of new permits for logging in primary forests in an effort to halt deforestation. While environmentalists and concerned citizens alike certainly welcomed this news, the road ahead to improving forest and land governance in Indonesia is steep.
India Under Prime Minister Modi: A Conversation with Ambassador Kathleen Stephens
editor Alma Freeman sat down with Asia Foundation trustee Ambassador Kathleen Stephens
, who visited Asia Foundation headquarters in San Francisco having just concluded a 7-month post as chargé d'affaires at the U.S Embassy in New Delhi.
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