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Vietnam-United States Defense Policy Dialogue 2022

November 14, 2022 06:31 PM
The United States attends National Dialogues, often referred to as just simply dialogues, with foreign nations to discuss the terms of foreign relations between the two countries. Normally, these dialogues happen annually as a one-on-one between the United States and the other country, however, the most recent dialogues have been postponed one year due to COVID-19. The overarching purpose of these dialogues are to assess the past of the countries’ relationship, and evaluate and organize the future of the relationship and how they can improve moving forward. On September 12th, 2022, the Vietnam-United States Defense Policy Dialogue was held in Hanoi, Vietnam.
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Xi Jinping Addresses China’s Communist Party

October 26, 2022 05:32 PM
In summary, Xi Jinping’s address to the 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party reinforced Chinese ambitions to replace the United States as a global superpower. Xi Jinping’s remarks present possible national security risks through escalatory language towards Taiwan, expansion of the Belt and Road initiative, and extensive technological advancements.
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Chinese Surveillance of the Uyghers

October 20, 2022 11:18 AM
In a New York Times video analysis conducted by Muyi Xiao about the Chinese surveillance systems, they portray a higher amount of security precautions in the Xinjiang province, where the majority population is Uyghur. This poses many questions about the true motivation behind the Chinese security systems, and what purposes they are truly serving. The Chinese government has affirmed that the sole reason for these systems is to prevent crime. In reports obtained from the Chinese government, there are propositions of reaching a level of security that would be able to predict and prevent future crimes before they happened, before the crime was committed. Although this idea has yet to be confirmed of being realized, the prospect of the possibility is important to remember.
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Impact of Ukrainian Conflict on Taiwan

September 26, 2022 06:57 PM
Since February, global attention has continued to concentrate on the Russia-Ukraine conflict and its rippling impact, extending beyond its interference in the global supply chain or impulsion of refugees within Europe to the tensions in Eastern Asia between China (PRC) and Taiwan (ROC).
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48th G7 Summit of 2022

June 20, 2022 07:48 PM
Every year since 1975, a world economic summit has been held to discuss and brainstorm the current challenges facing the world. It has evolved since then into what we know today as the G7. There are seven member nations who make up this council including the United States and the current Presiding nation of Germany. The 26th of this month will mark the beginning of a new summit meeting in the Bavarian Alps with the massive backdrop of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. Although it does not wield the policy making power like the EU or the UN, the G7 will play a huge role in setting the tone for the remainder of the war. Ministers from other countries and representatives from the EU have been invited to take part in the summit as well. Since Russia began sending troops to the Ukrainian border, many emergency meetings have been convened in response to the Russian act of aggression on Ukraine. This will add to the buildup of this year’s G7 summit which will like showcase severe punishments and a doubling down of its strict behavior towards Russia.
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Presidency in the Philippines

June 19, 2022 07:03 PM
In 1986, Ferdinand Marcos, former president of the Philippines, was ousted from power. Now, nearly 40 years later, the Marcos family is returning to power as Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is declared the winner of the recent Philippines Presidential Election. For many, this is an alarming event, as citizens reflect back on the last Marcos regime and what it did to their country. Former President Marcos was ousted from power because of his dictatorial leadership and for his imposition of martial law towards the end of his presidency. With this legacy, many wonder what it means for the Philippines as Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. prepares to step into the role of President of the Philippines. In his campaign, Marcos Jr. asked for all to “judge me not by my ancestors, but by my actions”. What will his actions be and what will they do to the Philippines’ democracy? Furthermore, what does this new presidency mean for U.S. foreign policy, especially as tensions with China continue to heighten?
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Monthly Archives: March 2021

Situation Report of the Military Coup in Myanmar

June 26, 2021 09:19 PM
On the morning of February 1st, 2021, the military of Myanmar seized control of the government after the general election in which Aung San Suu Kyi, the current head of the government, and the National League for Democracy (NDL) party won by a landslide. The military is now currently in charge and has declared a year-long state of emergency. The military had backed the opposition in the election, who were demanding a rerun of the vote, claiming widespread fraud. The election commission of Myanmar said there was no evidence to support these claims of voter fraud. The coup was staged shortly after as a new session of parliament was set to open. Ms. Suu Kyi is currently under house arrest and has been charged with possessing illegally imported walkie-talkies. Many other NLD officials have also been detained. Power has been handed over to commander-in-chief Min Aung Hlaing, who has overseen the military of Myanmar for many years now and has declared that the country will have a “free and fair” election after the state of emergency is over.
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Monthly Archives: January 2021

Power PLA: A New Chinese Village on the Bhutan-China Border

June 26, 2021 09:13 PM
In November, Chinese media revealed shocking images of a new village built inside an area that has been disputed by China and Bhutan for decades. All this despite recent statements by Lotay Tsering, the prime minister of Bhutan, saying that negotiations over the Bhutan-China border had been progressing well. The Chinese village, Pangda, had been built in a short period and already had residents living in it by the time Bhutan discovered it.
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Monthly Archives: December 2020

Rethinking Resort Islands: American Efforts to Shore up Connections to the South China Sea

June 26, 2021 08:58 PM
Since its independence from the United Kingdom in 1965, other countries have known the Republic of Maldives mostly as a honeymoon destination for Bollywood actors. However, the archipelago is now seeing renewed attention for a more strategic purpose. The sea surrounding the islands is the Laccadive Sea, which connects Maldives, India, and Sri Lanka. The Laccadive Sea has stable waters throughout the whole year, which makes it ideal for a naval base, something the United States might try to establish in the coming years, given its activity in base-building in other parts of the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
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Monthly Archives: October 2020

Re-education or Genocide? Chinese Oppression of Xinjiang’s Uyghurs

June 26, 2021 08:53 PM
Behind green barbed-wire fences sit rows of men and rows of women, segregated by gender. They have been stripped of any religious clothing and instead wear royal blue jumpsuits. Behind these fences, Uyghur Muslims go to have “their thoughts transformed.” China claims these camps are necessary for preventing future acts of terrorism perpetrated by Muslim extremists. The country has built more of these camps at an alarming rate, all the while claiming that it is scaling back re-education efforts. These actions have brought the condemnation of some countries in the United Nations, as well as the United States. Attempts at further “re-education” will likely increasingly be met by more aggressive economic sanctions because detention camps violate international law and China’s promised obligation to protect human rights.
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Monthly Archives: August 2020

Rodrigo Duterte and the Erosion of American-ASEAN Ties

June 26, 2021 01:00 PM
Filipino policy has changed drastically in the last few years, with ramifications for Southeast Asian geopolitics. President Rodrigo Duterte has launched a campaign to break up “oligarchies” in the Philippines’ economy, stripped journalists critical of his policies of their licensing, and conceded to Chinese claims in the South China Sea. Duterte’s critics worry that if he isolates himself and the Philippines from the United States and traditional allies too much, China will replace them.
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Chinese Expansion in the South China Sea

June 26, 2021 12:46 PM
In the past five years China has become increasingly aggressive about asserting their authority over greater and greater swathes of the South China Sea through the creation and militarization of artificial islands. One aspect of this expansion that has drawn considerable ire from the US is the movement and subsequent testing of anti-ship cruise missiles to advance positions in the South China Sea in July of 2019. This movement of missiles is the pinnacle of a vast effort by the Chinese to project power into the South China Sea and deter the powerful US presence in the region.
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Insurgency in North East India

June 25, 2021 11:21 PM
For decades, Northeastern India has faced relentless violence from rebel groups seeking autonomy from the Indian government. Militant groups started with India’s independence in 1947, when they felt like their voices weren’t heard by the government, “Militants in India’s northeast once enjoyed vast popular support since they, in their formative years, voiced genuine grievances of the people such as poor governance, alienation, lack of development and an apathetic attitude from the central government in New Delhi.” Now that they don’t have sway with the government, they make themselves heard through militant acts including bombings and shootings.
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Coronavirus and Economics

June 25, 2021 11:14 PM
The coronavirus has caused widespread panic throughout the world and bears strong resemblance to the SARS outbreak of 2003. While the SARS virus caused an estimated $40 billion economic loss, the coronavirus has the potential to cause much more damage as China has become more integrated into the global economy (1). While China has enforced many policies in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus, the virus has caused extensive economic damage in China that will spread to the global economy.
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Monthly Archives: December 2019

Tbilisi’s Political Woes Continue

June 19, 2021 11:38 PM
Protests in Tbilisi ignited in Juneafter Russian lawmaker Sergei Gavrilov, deputy of the Russian State Duma, sat in the Georgian parliamentary speaker’s seat and addressed the audience in Russian. Protesters were not only angry about the Kremlin’s overreach into Georgia, but also with the Georgian Dream Party, which protesters claim has failed to adequately protect the country from Russian aggression. “The Russia factor was the trigger for this crisis, but it was not the cause,” rather the breaking point was “very polarized domestic politics in which the opposition plays the Russian card to discredit the government” according to Georgia expert Thomas de Waal (Higgins).
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Monthly Archives: December 2019

Hypersonic Missiles in Asia

June 19, 2021 11:33 PM
On October 1, China impressed the world on the 70th anniversary of Communist rule with a military parade that highlighted the technological progress and investment into military might China has made[1]. Among these technologies is the deployment of hypersonic missiles; weapons that have worrying implications for the nature of security and warfare in the Pacific.
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Monthly Archives: November 2019

Reform Proves Difficult in Former Dictatorship Kazakhstan

June 19, 2021 11:05 PM
On October 9, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed a presidential decree granting former president Nursultan Nazabayev power to veto appointees to a majority of government leadership positions (5). This decree forbade Tokayev from unilaterally appointing “cabinet ministers, heads of various security forces and regional governors.” Tokayev will still maintain control over cabinet minister appointments in the “defense, internal affairs and foreign affairs” departments (4). The decree granted Nazarbayev “a consultative role in the appointments in his capacity as chairman of the Security Council” (4). Tokayev will need to consult Nazarbayev on appointees for all subordinate bodies, including the Kazakh domestic intelligence agency (KNB), foreign intelligence agency, the central bank, and even the head of Tokayev’s own security detail (1).
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Monthly Archives: November 2019

Implications of Hong Kong’s Extradition Bill

June 19, 2021 04:26 PM
Western media has seen steady reports originating from Hong Kong in the last few months detailing the rising tension over the mainland-Chinese sponsored extradition bill, in which perpetrators of certain crimes can potentially be extradited to the mainland for prosecution. Hong Kong and China’s stark differences in government and right to free speech have exacerbated the issue, with claims from the former stating that China has seen fit to unfairly accuse and then prosecute their citizens for things as simple as professing their distrust of the latter’s oversight. Tensions hit a new high several months ago as Hong Kong’s citizens took to the streets in groups of up to a million people, protesting for their rights. Eventually this led to tear gassing from masses of riot police being introduced to the mix, who allegedly beat and injured thousands of people, even those not directly involved in the protest [1]. Just days ago, Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam, seen by many as a puppet figure controlled by Xi Jinping and the mainland government, came face to face with one of many angry groups of Hong Kong’s protesting citizens in a town hall meeting where she was insulted and frustratingly berated by a horde of people [2].
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