Huong Le Thu
China’s ongoing construction efforts have created a situation where (in the words of the Commander of the US Indo-Pacific Command, Admiral Philip Davidson) Beijing is ‘capable of controlling the South China Sea in all scenarios short of war with the United States’. The absence of outright war reflects not only China’s ability to move the threshold for instigating open conflict, but also the fact that law, justice and security are not being respected, and that some have come to terms with this.Global Security Issues
To further its ambitious agenda, the Somali terrorist organisation Al-Shabaab has dedicated substantial time and effort into polishing its unique brand.Tackling Extremism, African Union, Counterinsurgency, Terrorism
The Hanoi summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump came to no clear agreement on measures to limit North Korea’s nuclear programme. The two countries’ opposing positions and motives will make next steps challenging.Proliferation and Nuclear Policy
Will the construction of a 1200km fence along the Afghanistan–Pakistan border spark new confidence in Pakistan’s commitment to combatting cross-border terrorism?Counterinsurgency, Global Security Issues
Five years on from their initial introduction, international sanctions on Russia have done little to alter the country’s behaviour on the international scene or domestically. As the sanctions continue to restrict foreign investment in Russia’s infrastructure, authorities are keen to promote the idea of megaprojects – large but often symbolic constructions – as a distraction from Russia’s economic constraints. However, in the long term this strategy may prove short-sighted, as it diverts government funds away from necessary social welfare projects that may increase public dissatisfaction in the coming years.