• Politics and Strategy

    Dana H. Allin: Obama's Luck

    21 January 2015.  Ronald Reagan was a lucky president. He entered the White House in an era of American malaise. The country had been humiliated by revolutionary Iranians who held American diplomats hostage in their own embassy for 444 days. The economy had a suffered a novel and demoralising mix of high inflation and slow growth, aggravated by consecutive oil-price shocks. After a period of détente, US–Soviet confrontation had entered a very serious...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Steven Simon: Israel’s Upcoming Elections

    20 January 2015.  [Editor’s note: an earlier version of this post appeared on The Middle East Institute website on 15 January 2015.] The electoral campaign in Israel is still unfolding, and with about three months to go anything might happen to upend predictions about the outcome. But there are straws in the wind. The Israel Democracy Institute has released poll results that cover a lot of ground, some of it relevant to the upcoming...

  • Expert Commentary

    International Affairs: Iran’s ISIS policy

    16 January 2015.  By Dina Esfandiary, Research Associate, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Programme and Ariane Tabatabai This article assesses Iran’s strategy in dealing with the threat of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It examines the implications of the rise of ISIS in Iran’s immediate neighbourhood for Tehran’s policies in Syria and Iraq and investigates how each of these countries affects Iranian national interests. It provides an overview of the major events marking...

  • Expert Commentary

    European Leadership Network: Summitry cannot resolve the Russia-West crisis

    15 January 2015.  By Samuel Charap, Senior Fellow for Russia and Eurasia From the moment in late December when Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced – as it turns out, prematurely – that there would be a heads-of-state meeting in the so-called Normandy format on January 15 in Astana, observers have been keenly awaiting signs of a breakthrough in the Ukraine crisis talks. Instead, the summit has been called off, tensions have spiked on the...

  • Events

    Pakistan's Security Perspectives

    15 January 2015. 

    Off-the-Record Discussion
    General Raheel Sharif
    Chief of Army Staff, Pakistan
    Arundel House, London
    Friday, 16 January 2014

  • Expert Commentary

    Economic Times: China in South Asia - From Business to Politics

    13 January 2015.  By Sanjaya Baru, Director, Geo-economics and Strategy It is interesting that so much of the commentary on the surprising outcome of the elections in Sri Lanka last week has a reference to China. The last time one read so many references to the implications of a national election result for China-India relations was when Nepal and then the Maldives went to polls. Indeed, China figured even in the commentary on the...

  • IISS Voices

    John Drennan: Lukashenko - More than a Kremlin satrap

    12 January 2015.  By John Drennan, Research Assistant and Programme Officer, Russia and Eurasia Programme Following Russia’s annexation of Crimea in March 2014 and the subsequent crisis in Ukraine, Belarus’s President Aleksandr Lukashenko has sought to carefully balance his country’s deep dependence on Russia against potential new threats to Belarus’s sovereignty. During his tenure, Lukashenko has demonstrated that he is no Kremlin satrap, but rather a self-interested client willing to deviate from his patron...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Dana H. Allin: Degrees of Separation

    09 January 2015.  I was riding my usual train home last night when a friend in Boston called my cell phone. He announced, in preface, that he had something shocking to tell me. The sister of a mutual graduate-school friend was among the 12 people shot dead in the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris on Wednesday. She looked like my old friend, she was an accomplished and beloved psychologist, and she wrote a...

  • Expert Commentary

    IISS in the Press

    05 January 2015.  After rapid advances, Isis may have staying power The Guardian, 26 December If 2014 can be described as the year of the Islamic State, it is a fair bet that the jihadi group Barack Obama has pledged to ‘degrade and ultimately destroy’ will continue to dominate headlines from the Middle East in 2015. Past investments and current oil interests mean the US has been prioritising Iraq over Syria. The dysfunctional Iraqi army, humiliated...

  • Expert Commentary

    Economic Times: 2014 was the year we witnessed geoeconomics trump geopolitics

    30 December 2014.  By Sanjaya Baru, Director, Geo-economics and Strategy Theorists of international relations and grand strategists around the world declared ‘geopolitics redux’ when Russia marched into Crimea in the spring of 2014. Russian President Vladimir Putin was castigated, or celebrated, for opening a new era of geopolitical competition on the Eurasian landmass. However, 2014 will be remembered as much for Russia’s geopolitical initiative as it would be for the West’s geoeconomic response. Given the sharp...

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