US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

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20.11.2018

"America’s Spies Won’t Let Trump Shield MBS"

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-20/america-s-cia-won-t-let-donald-trump-shield-mbs-ove
r-khashoggi?srnd=opinion

Die Bereitschaft der CIA, den saudi-arabischen Kronprinzen direkt für die Ermordung des Journalisten Jamal Khashoggi verantwortlich zu machen, wird von Bobby Ghosh als durchaus bemerkenswert eingeschätzt. Zuletzt habe die CIA einen Regierungschef (den chilenischen Diktator Pinochet) im Jahr 1976 in ähnlicher Weise bloßgestellt. "First, the CIA must be sure it has powerful evidence of the prince’s alleged responsibility — tapes and phone intercepts included. Second, the agency must believe that MBS isn’t essential to American security interests in the region. Had the spies agreed with the president’s assessment, it is unlikely they would have leaked their conclusion of MBS’s guilt. This is significant because the CIA works closely with its Saudi counterparts, and would not have made such a determination lightly. And third, the CIA is determined not to be involved in a shabby cover-up. (...) With the CIA and Congress now of one mind on MBS, other governments might feel emboldened to take action as well. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has already suspended arms sales to Saudi Arabia (...). More empowered still are Saudi Arabia’s rivals. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has kept up pressure on MBS without naming him, will now feel vindicated."

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11.11.2018

"There’s No Need for a European Army"

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-11/the-european-union-doesn-t-need-macron-s-army?srnd=
opinion

Bloomberg hält den Aufruf des französischen Präsidenten zur Bildung einer europäischen Armee in diesem Leitartikel trotz der aktuellen Spannungen im NATO-Bündnis für unnötig. "Macron’s proposal ignores a more significant reality: The U.S. continues to strengthen its military involvement in Europe. Pentagon spending on Europe has risen to $4.77 billion this year, from $789 million when Trump was elected. The U.S. contributes 70 percent of NATO’s military spending. The Pentagon has 65,000 military personnel and dozens of bases in Europe, and rotates thousands of troops and loads of heavy equipment in and out of Baltics and Poland, the states most vulnerable to Russian aggression. Europe hardly seems able to afford to do as much. (...) It’s sadly ironic that Macron made his proposal as he toured battlefields of World War I, a brutal conflict that demonstrated the necessity for Europe and the U.S. to work together to maintain peace on the continent. NATO has done this job admirably for six decades, as both a military firewall and a forum for negotiating policy disagreements among its 29 members. Europe has no need to replace it."

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10.11.2018

"Today’s Armies Are Still Fighting World War I"

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-10/today-s-armies-are-still-fighting-world-war-i?srnd=
opinion

Der Erste Weltkrieg wurde nach Ansicht von James Stavridis von technologischen, strategischen und medizinischen Neuerungen begleitet, die moderne Armeen bis heute prägen. "First, World War I produced stunning technological improvements that remain the foundations of modern combat operations in the air, on the sea, and on the ground. The most obvious is the development of air forces. (...) And while air, sea and land saw the fundamental advances, there were remarkable improvements in medicine (blood banks, antiseptics, plastic surgery); communications (radio signals for combat movements); sensors (ultrasound and primitive sonar); and materials (synthetic rubber). All of these innovations are a fundamental part of modern warfare today. In addition to all these technological marvels, the aftermath of the war saw a proliferation of new theories of combat operations. (...) Finally, it is worth noting that the First World War was a fundamental shifting point in how states have tragically become willing to conduct 'full national war.'"

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24.10.2018

"Why Erdogan Is Pulling His Punches at Saudi Arabia"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-10-24/khashoggi-killing-erdogan-s-balancing-act?srnd=opinion

Die Türkei habe ihre Konfrontation mit Saudi-Arabien im Khashoggi-Skandal bisher sorgfältig kalibriert, schreibt Hussein Ibish. Grund für die relative Zurückhaltung Ankaras sei vor allem das schwierige Verhältnis zu Washington. "Erdogan’s restraint on Tuesday reflects his understanding that even if he pushed hard to bring down the crown prince, he would sacrifice other, more important goals. Backing off a bit, by contrast, prevents a complete breakdown with Saudi Arabia and preserves leverage with Washington. At the same time, he can hope to embarrass Saudi Arabia and weaken the crown prince enough to blunt Saudi Arabia’s effectiveness as a regional rival. As for the crown prince and the Saudi government, they are entirely in damage-control mode, and their main audience right now is Trump."

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22.10.2018

"Turkey’s Leaks Are Undermining the Khashoggi Investigation"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-10-22/khashoggi-inquiry-undermined-by-erdogan-and-turkey-s-l
eaks?srnd=opinion

In türkischen Medien werden immer neue Details der Untersuchung des Mordes am Journalisten Jamal Khashoggi veröffentlicht. Bobby Ghosh meint, dass diese Taktik die Wahrheitsfindung eher behindert. "The leaks, and the motivation behind them, have become subject of much speculation. A common assumption is that the leakers are indulging in schadenfreude by putting out information embarrassing to the Saudis, and especially those linking Khashoggi’s murder to the crown prince, better known by his initials as MBS. (...) But the leaks serve nobody’s constructive purpose. They undermine the credibility of the investigation, and of Turkey’s impartiality. There are two obvious ways to stop them. One is to swiftly conclude the investigation and bring all the evidence to light. But given the sensitivity attending the case, it makes more sense to emphasize accuracy over speed, stopping the leaks to give investigators time to work."

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16.10.2018

"Germany’s Shrinking Political Center"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-10-16/bavaria-election-germany-s-shrinking-center-bodes-ill-
for-europe?srnd=opinion

Bloomberg hält den Ausgang der Landtagswahlen in Bayern in diesem Leitartikel nicht nur für Deutschland, sondern auch im Hinblick auf Europa für bedenklich. "German politics is fragmenting, with parties on the right and left gaining strength at the expense of a center that has controlled national politics for years. Merkel will struggle to hold her coalition together, let alone govern effectively. And a diminished chancellor preoccupied with internal turmoil bodes ill for the West, with liberal democracy in retreat worldwide and the European Union challenged by an erratic American partner and rising right-wing populism in Italy, Hungary and Poland, as well as in Germany itself."

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08.10.2018

"Putin Gets the Spies He Deserves"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-10-08/putin-s-inept-spies-reflect-regime-that-values-loyalty
-above-all?srnd=opinion

Leonid Bershidsky hält die Aufdeckung der mutmaßlichen Aktivitäten des russischen Militärgeheimdienstes GRU im Westen für eine direkte Folge der langjährigen Amtszeit von Präsident Putin. In dieser Zeit sei Loyalität auch in den Geheimdiensten stets höher eingeschätzt worden als Kompetenz. "(...) professionalism in general has become rare in Russia, especially in the government sector outside a tiny technocratic elite that deals with sophisticated economic policy. Putin’s struggle to appoint competent regional governors is a case in point. Last month, for the fourth time since 2016, the Russian president picked one of his former bodyguards to run Astrakhan, a place to which he has no obvious connection. (...) Putin doesn’t have a deep bench when it comes to competent bureaucrats, diplomats or law enforcers. (...) Years of thought suppression, the erosion of intellectual life and educational institutions, and Putin’s clear preference for personal loyalty over competence have taken a toll on Russia’s public service, including the intelligence community."

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03.10.2018

"Erdogan Gets Something for Nothing in Germany"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-10-03/turkey-s-erdogan-gets-something-for-nothing-from-angel
a-merkel?srnd=opinion

Auch Bobby Ghosh sieht Erdogan als klaren Gewinner des Staatsbesuchs in Deutschland. Bundeskanzlerin Merkel habe offenbar nur wenig Einfluss auf den türkischen Präsidenten. "He didn’t get everything he wanted: There were no promises of visa-free access to the Europe Union for Turks, for instance, and the prospects for a more extensive customs union with the EU haven’t improved. But the German chancellor, having accorded her guest full state honors, ensured that he went home with gifts of great symbolic and diplomatic value. (...) In return, Erdogan gave Merkel… not a lot. The president largely ignored his hosts’ concerns about the state of democracy and human rights in Turkey, and instead accused Germany of harboring spies and terrorists. He didn’t apologize for previously accusing Merkel of 'Nazi measures.' If she expressed any criticisms of his economic policies, these weren’t made public, and Erdogan doesn’t seem to have promised any changes. The outcome reflects an uncomfortable reality for Merkel: As much as Erdogan needs German support — all the more now that his relationship with U.S. President Donald Trump has soured — she plainly doesn’t have much leverage over him."

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25.09.2018

"Europe Finally Has an Excuse to Challenge the Dollar"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-25/europe-finally-has-an-excuse-to-challenge-the-dollar

Die EU will europäischen Unternehmen mit Hilfe einer neuen Finanzinstitution ermöglichen, die US-Sanktionen gegen den Iran zu umgehen. Nach Ansicht von Leonid Bershidsky ist dieser Schritt auch eine Herausforderung der amerikanischen Dominanz des globalen Finanzsystems. "Creating 'a defensible banking architecture' may well be the end goal for the Europeans, China and Russia, anyway. Iran is only a convenient pretext: The nuclear agreement is one of the few things that unite the EU, China and Russia against the U.S. But working to undermine the dollar’s global dominance isn’t ultimately about Iran at all. In his recent State of the European Union speech, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker called for strengthening the euro’s international role and moving away from traditional dollar invoicing in foreign trade. China and Russia have long sought the same thing, but it’s only with Europe, home of the world’s second biggest reserve currency, that they stand a chance of challenging American dominance."

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17.09.2018

"A U.S. Military Intervention in Venezuela Would Be a Disaster"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-17/a-u-s-military-intervention-in-venezuela-would-be-a-di
saster?srnd=opinion

Shannon K O'Neil erläutert angesichts offener Überlegungen einiger US-Politiker über eine amerikanische Militärintervention in Venezuela, warum ein solcher Einsatz als "Desaster" enden würde. "Venezuela isn’t Grenada or Panama, the two Latin American countries invaded by the U.S. during the closing days of the Cold War. Instead, it is twice the size of Iraq with only a slightly smaller population, and teeters on the verge of chaos. Any invasion requires preparations on a similar scale, meaning a 100,000-plus force. U.S. troops are unlikely to be welcomed. (...) If they enter, U.S. troops must prepare to stay for the long haul. (...) In response to these risks, some have called for a multilateral force, which could spread the burden and mitigate charges of Yankee overreach. But Venezuela’s neighbors will not answer a military call. Public opinion in these democracies is against intervention. Their foreign policy elites, steeped in a doctrine of non-intervention, also stand in opposition. (...) instead of pushing for anachronistic and counterproductive military measures, Venezuela’s neighbors should take the hard but necessary diplomatic, financial and humanitarian measures needed to achieve economic and political change and an improvement in the region’s collective fortunes."

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05.09.2018

"Putin’s Swashbuckling Spies Are Hurting Him"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-05/skripal-poisoning-putin-s-swashbuckling-gru-is-hurting
-him

Russlands Präsident Putin sollte sich nach Ansicht von Leonid Bershidsky Gedanken über die Effektivität und Sorgfältigkeit seines Militärgeheimdienstes GRU machen. Verschiedene Operationen, die dem Geheimdienst zugeschrieben werden, auch das fehlgeschlagene Attentat auf den Ex-Spion Sergei Skripal, hätten zu viel Aufmerksamkeit erregt und Russland politisch geschadet. "By comparison, the other two Russian intelligence services that work overseas, the SVR and the FSB, have spotless records. Although no GRU officers have actually been arrested as a result of the failures, the string of mishaps resembles — at least in scale — the GRU’s nightmare period from the late 1920s to the mid-1930s. (...) If, like Stalin in 1934, Putin is interested in deniability, he’s not getting it with the swashbuckling GRU. It’s possible, of course, that the Russian president’s real interest is in enhancing his reputation as a fearsome enemy. May told Parliament on Wednesday that she thought the Skripal poisoning was meant to send a message to other Russians in London that they weren’t safe. If so, Putin should be fine with the publicity the military intelligence service is getting — but only up to a point. The GRU, after all, is not publicity-oriented, and the scandals are undermining its usefulness in real intelligence work by drawing the attention of Western adversaries."

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04.09.2018

"Don’t Give Up on North Korea"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-04/donald-trump-kim-jong-un-and-a-path-forward-for-north-
korea?srnd=opinion

Bloomberg meint in diesem Leitartikel, dass es trotz der aktuellen Probleme im Verhandlungsprozess zwischen den USA und Nordkorea zu früh sei, die diplomatische Denuklearisierung Nordkoreas als gescheitert zu betrachten. "Disappointment was to be expected because Kim conceded next to nothing in his summit with Trump, pledging only to work toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula — a formula that implies the removal of U.S. forces — and only after striking a comprehensive peace agreement with Washington. (...) Nonetheless, Kim can’t revert to the pre-summit status quo. State media have celebrated the recent contacts and Kim’s promise that they’ll promote trade and development. The young autocrat has staked his legitimacy on improving his country’s dire living standards. Estimates suggest that nearly three-quarters of North Koreans now derive some of their income from markets of one kind or another. A taste of economic liberty is apt to create an appetite for more. North Korea’s command-and-control model is under internal assault. (...) Trump will have to convince Kim that North Korea cannot avoid coming to terms with the U.S. — which means, in turn, closer U.S. coordination with China and, especially, South Korea. This should be possible, despite suggestions from Trump that Beijing is encouraging the North’s recalcitrance."

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30.08.2018

"Europe Wants to Defend Itself? Good Luck With That."

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-30/europe-wants-to-defend-itself-from-russia-good-luck-wi
th-that

Nach Ansicht von Hal Brands werden die Europäer trotz der jüngsten Appelle einiger Politiker für eine größere sicherheitspolitische Eigenständigkeit schnell feststellen, dass sie ihre strategische Abhängigkeit von den USA nicht so leicht überwinden können. "On security, European military weakness is so severe that it would take decades for the EU or any other association of European nations to be able to defend the continent’s eastern flank from Russia, much less project power into unstable neighboring regions such as the Middle East and North Africa. (...) The realization that Europe is impotent to escape its strategic dependence will only deepen the resentment that many Europeans feel, by underscoring that the continent remains in thrall to even an erratic, often-unfriendly America. That realization, in turn, may not lead to a quick trans-Atlantic divorce, but it could promote a more gradual trans-Atlantic drift that would ultimately prove quite damaging."

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30.08.2018

"Iran Says It Will Block Middle East Oil Exports If It Can't Ship"

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-30/iran-says-it-will-block-middle-east-oil-exports-if-it-
can-t-ship

Sollten iranische Ölexporte über die Straße von Hormus durch die USA blockiert werden, werde der Iran auch andere Länder daran hindern, die wichtige Meerenge für Öltransporte zu nutzen, so die Warnung des iranischen Stabschefs der Streitkräfte, Mohammad Bagheri. "If the Islamic Republic can’t use the Strait for its oil exports, 'there will be no security for others either and no other crude will be exported from this region,' Armed Forces Chief of Staff Mohammad Bagheri said, state-run Mehr news agency reported. The U.S. Army and other military forces present in the Middle East 'know full well that the smallest mistake in the region will bear a heavy cost for them.'"

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27.08.2018

"EU Looking to Sidestep U.S. Sanctions With Payments System Plan"

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-27/eu-looking-to-sidestep-u-s-sanctions-with-payments-sys
tem-plan

Deutschland und Frankreich wollen die US-Sanktionen gegen den Iran mit Hilfe neuer unabhängiger Finanzinstrumente umgehen, berichten William Horobin und Birgit Jennen. "'With Germany, we are determined to work on an independent European or Franco-German financing tool which would allow us to avoid being the collateral victims of U.S. extra-territorial sanctions,' French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said Monday during a meeting with press association AJEF. 'I want Europe to be a sovereign continent not a vassal, and that means having totally independent financing instruments that do not today exist.' (...) Le Maire said using the European Investment Bank, which has exposure to the U.S., as a 'financial channel' would be 'very complicated' and that the French and German governments are talking to their respective central banks about their involvement. 'If we want to build a truly independent instrument we must open up all the options,' he said."

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21.08.2018

"Europe Should Stop Trying to Save the Iran Deal"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-21/iran-nuclear-deal-european-union-should-work-toward-re
placement

Bloomberg empfiehlt der EU in diesem Leitartikel, die Bemühungen zur Rettung des Atomabkommens mit dem Iran aufzugeben. "Saving the deal — which granted Iran sanctions relief in return for new restrictions on its nuclear program — was never a real prospect after Trump pulled out. Once U.S. sanctions snapped back into place, few companies would dare to do business with the Islamic Republic. And yet Europe’s leaders have clung to the conceit that the agreement could still be made to work, ignoring not only the exhortations of the Trump administration but also the clear message from their own companies, which (like their American counterparts) have been scrapping plans to do business with Iran. (...) Now Europe must start working toward a new one that would address the weaknesses of the original while satisfying the Trump administration and the Iranian regime."

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20.08.2018

"Could Trade War Lead to the Real Thing?"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-20/could-u-s-china-trade-war-lead-to-a-real-conflict

Kevin Rudd analysiert die Hintergründe des aktuellen "Wirtschaftskriegs" zwischen den USA und China und warnt vor den Folgen einer ungebremsten Eskalation. "I’m not sure which way the Chinese leadership will choose to go. If they decide to double down rather than back down, the global economy should prepare for a major blow, one capable of tipping us all into recession. And that’s not even considering where the next steps in escalatory politics could take us once trade-related measures are exhausted. Bilateral investment flows are already slowing rapidly. A new Cold War in high technology is looming, if not already underway. And on the security front, we could easily see escalation in the South China Sea and beyond. Historically, we’ve routinely failed to discern when the tipping points come between public disagreement, failed diplomacy, political crisis, failed crisis management, limited conflict and then more general war. In this case, we aren’t even yet at phase two in the sequence."

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13.08.2018

"China-U.S. Trade Spat Is Just a Start to the Economic Cold War"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-13/china-u-s-trade-spat-is-just-a-start-to-the-economic-c
old-war

Der drohende Wirtschaftskrieg der USA gegen China könnte das Ausmaß des Kalten Kriegs gegen die Sowjetunion annehmen und das Leben einer ganzen Generation prägen, schreibt Conor Sen. "China is not just another front in President Donald Trump's war on trade. Unlike Mexico, Canada, Europe and other targets of the president, China will be a source of economic conflict for years to come, long after the tariff level on soybeans has been settled. Like the rivalry with the Soviet Union, economic competition with China may form a cold war that shapes American politics and economic policy for a generation or more. (...) A future economic cold war between the U.S. and China may push American leaders to favor a pro-growth policy at any price, even if that risks stoking additional inflation and inflating economic bubbles. If China invests more in space exploration, that could kick off another space race. In whatever realm China decides to emphasize, the U.S. will be afraid to let it get too far ahead. Fights over currency manipulation and soybean tariffs are likely to be just the beginning. The economic conflict between the U.S. and China could define the next generation of American life."

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10.08.2018

"U.S.-Turkey Relations Will Never Be the Same"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-10/u-s-turkey-relations-will-never-be-the-same

Therese Raphael erwartet, dass die neuen US-Sanktionen gegen die Türkei die Beziehungen beider Länder nachhaltig verändern werden. "There are only two ways that the diplomatic rift between the U.S. and Turkey can end: a compromise that salvages the relationship as best possible, or a complete rupture with devastating consequences both for Turkey's economy and America's regional strategic interests. Either way, there is no going back to the way things were. (...) American support for Turkey doesn't crumble in a day. The relationship is baked into ties on multiple levels, both inside and outside government, and for good reason. (...) And yet, it has definitely changed, thanks not so much to national interests, but to failings in leadership. The U.S. will have to settle for something less loyal, less an alliance and more a transactional relationship. But then that seems to define these times pretty aptly."

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05.08.2018

"Russia’s Shield Against Sanctions Draws Praise From Moody’s"

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-05/russia-s-shield-against-u-s-sanctions-draws-praise-fro
m-moody-s

Kristin Lindow von der Ratingagentur Moody’s zufolge hat die Regierung in Moskau erfolgreiche Schritte unternommen, um die Anfälligkeit der russischen Wirtschaft für künftige westliche Sanktionen zu reduzieren. "Russia is ready to absorb the blow from any new sanctions the U.S. throws its way, according to Moody’s Investors Service. Measures to cut down holdings of Treasuries and reduce exposure to the dollar have made the economy less vulnerable to the threat of deeper penalties, Moody’s analyst Kristin Lindow said in an interview. The country could even weather the unlikely scenario of sanctions on sovereign debt recently proposed by U.S. lawmakers, she said."

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04.08.2018

"Death, Diamonds and Russia’s Africa Project"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-04/russia-in-africa-death-diamonds-and-intrigue

Der Tod von drei russischen Journalisten in der Zentralafrikanischen Republik wirft Leonid Bershidsky zufolge ein Schlaglicht auf die Bemühungen Russlands um größeren Einfluss in Afrika. Die Reporter wurden bei ihren Recherchen über die Aktivitäten des russischen Militärunternehmens Wagner getötet. "Where China has spent decades and billions of dollars trying to entrench itself there, Russia is offering its brute force and strong appetite for risk. It’s already making headway. (...) Back in March, the Russian Foreign Ministry reported that Russia was working with the government of Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadera to explore the country’s natural resources on a concession basis. At the same time, the ministry said, Russia had sent weapons along with five military and 170 civilian instructors to train the nation's military forces. (...) Putin’s Russia has sought to restore its Soviet-era influence throughout the developing world, and its activity in Africa is not limited to the Central African Republic. It’s worth watching for reports of Russian concessions in other nations, such as Sudan, Chad, Rwanda and Gabon. The Wagner business model is well suited to the region where a forceful presence can be a prerequisite for successful business – and where looking into how this business is conducted can easily get one killed."

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18.07.2018

"Putin Has Lost His Influence in the Balkans"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-07-18/russia-has-lost-influence-in-balkans-but-it-still-sows
-trouble

Der Einfluss Russlands in den Ländern des früheren Jugoslawiens ist Leonid Bershidsky zufolge deutlich zurückgegangen. Trotzdem versuche Moskau weiterhin, politische Unruhe in der Region zu stiften. "Russia has largely lost its fight for influence in the Balkans: Nine of the area’s 12 countries (plus Kosovo, which is not a United Nations member) are in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and all the Balkan nations are either in the European Union or aspire to be in it. (...) There’s no way Russia can realistically prevent the eventual EU accession of former Yugoslav states, including the future North Macedonia. Among them, only Serbia is unlikely to join NATO. But Russia is spending money, risking scandals and undermining relations with relatively friendly European states such as Greece to stir up fringe groups without any hope of a decisive victory. (...) That resembles Russia’s game in the U.S. and in EU countries. Trouble for trouble’s sake is worth something to Putin, even if he cannot hope for a major victory. That’s something for his adversaries to keep in mind: For the Kremlin, stoking internal divisions is a goal in itself."

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17.07.2018

"If Iran Gets Back to Nukes, Israel Is Better Prepared to Strike"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-07-17/if-iran-gets-back-to-nukes-israel-is-ready-to-strike

Im Fall eines endgültigen Scheiterns des internationalen Atomabkommens mit dem Iran wäre Israel heute besser auf gezielte Militärschläge gegen iranische Atomanlagen vorbereitet als noch vor wenigen Jahren, schreibt Ilan Jonas. "(...) just because Israel is now better positioned to carry out a strike on Iran means that it will inevitably do so. The chances remain low for now. There are many domestic constraints as well as international factors that could prevent Israel from eventually launching such a strike, or even make it redundant (such as international pressure forcing Iran toward restraint). However, Israel’s enhanced capabilities do allow Netanyahu to take a more aggressive approach toward Tehran, knowing that if push comes to shove, the prospects of a strike succeeding will be significantly higher than it was when he held up that cartoon bomb at the UN."

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09.07.2018

"Russia Should Admit It Uses Mercenaries"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-07-09/russia-should-stop-denying-it-uses-mercenaries-to-figh
t-its-wars

Nach Ansicht von Leonid Bershidsky ist es an der Zeit, dass Russland den Einsatz von Söldnern und "beurlaubten" Soldaten in der Ostukraine und in Syrien eingesteht. "It could be in Putin’s interest to stop trying to keep open secrets and to recognize the existence of the private military companies. Separating them clearly from the official armed forces could be beneficial for deconfliction purposes. It might also help create a new, more plausible deniability, a line between private initiative, such as it is, and government interest in areas where the distinction is murky now. The U.S., after all, doesn’t try to hide its private military companies."

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14.06.2018

"On Trade, Merkel Joins Trump on the Low Road"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-06-14/trade-war-merkel-borrows-trump-s-method-of-cherry-pick
ing-data

Im Handelsstreit mit den USA folgt Bundeskanzlerin Merkel nach Ansicht von Leonid Bershidsky dem Vorbild von Präsident Trump. Beide scheuen demnach nicht davor zurück, Fakten zu "manipulieren", um die eigene Position zu stützen. "Merkel the conscientious academic, known for her studiousness and careful preparation, is showing Trump that two can play the cherry-picking game with numbers whose greatest value is as rhetorical devices to please the domestic political base. She’s treating the trade war between Europe and the U.S. as a contest of wills rather than an academic dispute. That’s a bad sign. This sort of contest is sure to escalate before the parties are tempted to look for a compromise, and escalation means the trade war will hurt more industries, and ultimately more workers, than it has already affected both in Europe and the U.S. It would be a far better idea to let statisticians work out their differences first, so that everyone can at least operate with the same set of numbers -- but it may be too late.​​​"

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05.06.2018

"Germany Isn’t Ready to Lead. That’s a Good Thing."

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-06-05/germany-s-past-reins-in-its-global-role-that-s-a-good-
thing

Leonid Bershidsky schreibt in seinem Kommentar zu den jüngsten Äußerungen von AfD-Parteichef Gauland zur NS-Zeit, dass die historische Erfahrung des Nationalsozialismus eventuelle globale Ambitionen Deutschlands in den vergangenen Jahrzehnten immer gezügelt habe. Diese Zurückhaltung sei immer noch positiv zu bewerten und sollte nicht leichtfertig aufgegeben werden. "The reluctance to assume the mantle of 'leader of the free world' and defender of the liberal order reflects Germany’s sincere realization that leadership is to be treated with extreme care. If Germany adopted the Gauland line or even a milder variation of it, the country would probably jump at more chances to take the reins. But the world is likely a better place because it refuses to do so. Attaching more importance to horrible failures than to glorious victories is a powerful discipline to be imitated rather than condemned."

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31.05.2018

"What Do Steel Tariffs Have to Do With Iran? Plenty"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-05-31/what-do-steel-tariffs-have-to-do-with-iran-plenty

Melvyn Krauss macht darauf aufmerksam, dass die US-Regierung mit ihren Strafzöllen gegen Europa vor allem sicherheitspolitische Zugeständnisse erreichen will. "That’s a novel — and potentially fraught — way for an American president to do business with his closest allies. But in the short term, it might deliver some results that Trump can use to declare victory. Trump’s hope seems to be that the threat of tariffs gives him leverage to get the cooperation he wants on European defense spending and sanctions on Iran. (...) In another sign of Trump’s new approach, U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, in an interview with the New York Times, suggested the president might be willing to grant the EU bloc permanent exemption from the trade tariffs in exchange for strong cooperation with the U.S. on Iran. The linkage tactic may seem outrageous to politicians in Berlin and Brussels. It may be dismissed as mere Trumpian impulse by others. But it’s not so easily ignored or countered."

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30.05.2018

"The U.S. Should Move Troops From Germany to Poland"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-05-29/ethiopia-already-is-the-china-of-africa

Leonid Bershidsky empfiehlt der US-Regierung, auf das polnische Angebot von zwei Milliarden US-Dollar einzugehen und US-Militärstützpunkte aus Deutschland in den Osten zu verlagern. "Placing U.S. bases in Germany after World War II was a response to the need to deter a Soviet attack and prevent Germany from becoming a military threat again. The second goal appears to be irrelevant today. (...) In addition, the theoretical front line in a conflict between Russia and NATO no longer runs through Germany, which today is buffered from Russia by a number of countries, including the Baltic states and Poland. Germans feel safe, and they’re among the least inclined to defend a NATO ally against a Russian attack. (...) There’s nothing (...) that Russia could do in response. It has already accepted temporary NATO deployments to the Baltics and Poland. So the U.S. doesn’t stand to lose anything by accepting Poland’s generous proposal and gradually relocating troops there from Germany."

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06.05.2018

"China Is Quietly Setting Global Standards"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-05-06/china-is-quietly-setting-global-standards

China sei fast unbemerkt dabei, im Zuge seiner globalen Investitions- und Wirtschaftsaktivitäten wichtige industrielle und technologische Standards zu setzen, schreibt Andrew Polk. In den vergangenen Jahrzehnten sei diese Rolle den USA zugefallen. "The process has so far mostly unfolded domestically, and in Chinese, as China's government has sought to develop its own set of industrial standards for companies operating within its borders. That has made the effort mostly opaque to outsiders. Yet regulators are now starting to translate those standards into English — a clear sign that they're meant to be exported overseas. And that should worry China's competitors. For decades, America's ability to set domestic standards that would then spread globally benefited its economy greatly. (...) To the extent that China's standards supplant Western ones, it will represent a direct threat to the profitability of non-Chinese companies. This push won't directly challenge the ability of American or European companies to innovate. But it will undoubtedly challenge their ability to commercialize technology in other markets."

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06.05.2018

"This North Korea Show Might Be Over Before It Starts"

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-05-06/north-korea-show-might-be-over-before-it-starts

Michael Schuman ist der Ansicht, dass das geplante Gipfeltreffen zwischen Donald Trump und Kim Jong Un letztlich wegen der fehlenden Vertrauensbasis zwischen den USA und Nordkorea scheitern wird. "(...) here we find the one factor that may kill off any nuclear deal with North Korea: verification. The U.S. and South Korea will need to be assured the North Koreans are doing what they say they’re doing. Any agreement will have to include some sort of process to inspect Pyongyang’s nuclear facilities and verify that every aspect of Kim’s weapons-making program has been eliminated. (...) The verification problem was one key reason why the first major attempt at denuclearization failed, too. In 1994, the Clinton Administration struck a deal with Pyongyang under which the U.S. would build two nuclear reactors for North Korea (which couldn’t easily produce the material necessary to make bombs) in return for the closure of its existing facilities (which could) and an end to its weapons development. The deal broke apart in the early 2000s amid mutual recriminations. The causes of the collapse were complex, but at its core was uncertainty over whether North Korea was abiding by its agreement."

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