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"The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict Is a Bad Omen"


Paul Stronski betrachtet den Konflikt in Bergkarabach als direkte Folge der amerikanischen Entscheidung, sich von der angestammten Rolle des globalen Polizisten zu verabschieden. "The 1914 assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand on a street corner in Sarajevo spurred World War I, a conflict that marked the dawn of the twentieth century’s industrial-scale brutality and bloodletting. This time, will an obscure corner of the South Caucasus be remembered as a similar turning point? The long-running Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, which dates to the waning days of the Soviet Union, is not going to trigger a global war. Nor will it affect the vital interests of the world’s great powers. Yet it shines a harsh spotlight on the unraveling post–Cold War world that the United States led for more than three decades. The United States and the European regional powers that previously cherished and protected these arrangements are now pulling back, along with the multilateral institutions they lead."

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"What Europe’s Dispute about Iran’s Nuclear Program Means"


Jarrett Blanc glaubt nicht, dass die E3-Staaten Deutschland, Frankreich und Großbritannien mit der Eröffnung des formellen Schlichtungsverfahrens ihren Ausstieg aus dem Atomabkommen mit dem Iran vorbereiten wollen. Den Europäern gehe es vielmehr darum, Zeit zu gewinnen. "The E3 have not been explicit about why they did not trigger the DRM before but decided to do so now, but their reasoning explains the meaning and limits of the current move. Throughout 2019, French President Emmanuel Macron made vigorous efforts to restart U.S.-Iran negotiations that would bolster or replace the JCPOA and allow a de-escalation of conflict in the region. The E3 believed that the DRM would undermine this diplomatic campaign. After Trump repeatedly rejected Iran’s minimum price of modest sanctions relief to return to the table, and certainly after Soleimani’s death, that effort is simply no longer viable. That means that quite contrary to the hopes of JCPOA opponents, the decision to trigger the DRM is not Europe abandoning the JCPOA, but Europe shelving (for now) efforts to negotiate its replacement. Instead, the Europeans are reinvesting in preserving some shell of the Iran deal as a potential platform for diplomacy at a future point, when Washington and Tehran are more willing. The best-case scenario is probably a continuation of the current crisis, getting a little worse over time but not by too much, until the United States is willing to seriously reevaluate its policies and priorities and reopen diplomatic efforts."

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"Why No Arab Spring in Palestine?"


Vor dem Hintergrund der andauernden Proteste in Libanon und Irak fragt Aaron David Miller, warum es in den palästinensischen Gebieten bisher keinen Arabischen Frühling 2.0 gebe. Ein wichtiger Grund sei die israelische Besatzung. "The same grievances — corruption, lack of trust in governing elites, and the breakdown of basic services — that have been driving thousands into the streets of Lebanon and Iraq also apply in the West Bank and Gaza. Yet Palestinians have been unable or unwilling to harness people against their own leaders in a sustained way. What does the absence of such protests say about the Palestinians and their politics? (…) Palestinians face a unique challenge. Not only do they want to build self-governing institutions and win statehood, they must manage this within the severe constraints of Israeli occupation. There are few, if any, precedents in modern history for a people negotiating its way out of this kind of situation and building state institutions, let alone successfully establishing a state. So although resentments about the lack of representation, corruption, economic mismanagement, and human rights simmer, the focus of Palestinian energy has been on Israel."

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"The Global Expansion of AI Surveillance"


Eine neue Studie der Carnegie Endowment for International Peace hat untersucht, auf welche Weise Staaten neue KI-gestützte Überwachungsmöglichkeiten nutzen. Steven Feldstein schreibt in der Zusammenfassung der Ergebnisse, dass China bei der Entwicklung und Verbreitung der neuen Technologien eine zentrale Rolle spiele. "AI surveillance technology is spreading at a faster rate to a wider range of countries than experts have commonly understood. At least seventy-five out of 176 countries globally are actively using AI technologies for surveillance purposes. This includes: smart city/safe city platforms (fifty-six countries), facial recognition systems (sixty-four countries), and smart policing (fifty-two countries). (...) China is a major driver of AI surveillance worldwide. (...) Liberal democracies are major users of AI surveillance. The index shows that 51 percent of advanced democracies deploy AI surveillance systems. In contrast, 37 percent of closed autocratic states, 41 percent of electoral autocratic/competitive autocratic states, and 41 percent of electoral democracies/illiberal democracies deploy AI surveillance technology. (...) Governments in autocratic and semi-autocratic countries are more prone to abuse AI surveillance than governments in liberal democracies. Some autocratic governments — for example, China, Russia, Saudi Arabia — are exploiting AI technology for mass surveillance purposes."

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"How Transatlantic Foreign Policy Cooperation Could Evolve After Brexit"


Nach einem Brexit werden die USA, Großbritannien und die EU die transatlantischen Beziehungen neu ordnen müssen, schreibt David Whineray in seiner Analyse. "The United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union will mark one of the most significant shifts in European and transatlantic geopolitics since the fall of the Berlin Wall. It will also take place at a time when the United States’ traditional transatlantic outlook has changed under Donald Trump’s administration. (...) Will Washington, London, Brussels, Paris, and Berlin want to act as a joint transatlantic unit in addressing major foreign policy challenges? Alternatively, will they want to maintain some strategic divergence from each other, given differing ideological outlooks? Either way, the immediate issue for the EU and the United Kingdom this fall will be whether their existing close foreign policy cooperation (such as on Iran) is impacted by — or inoculated from — any wider tensions between them as the Brexit endgame approaches."

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"Stabilizing Northeast Nigeria After Boko Haram"


Saskia Brechenmacher hat sich in dieser Analyse für die Carnegie Endowment for International Peace eingehend mit den Bemühungen beschäftigt, im Nordosten des Landes Hilfsprogramme auf lokaler Ebene umzusetzen. Echte Fortschritte werden demnach vor allem durch die schlechte Sicherheitssituation und die mangelnde Kooperation der Regierung verhindert. "Nigeria’s overstretched and corruption-plagued military has struggled to consolidate its gains. Over the past year, security has again worsened in parts of Borno State, thereby preventing the scale-up of many programs. While the Nigerian government has been eager to demonstrate progress in reconstruction, donors point to the longer-term threat of ISWAP [Islamic State West Africa Province] gaining a greater foothold in the rural areas around Lake Chad. Local-level programs rely heavily on the theory that they will create 'islands of stability' that will eventually forge connections with each other. Yet it is unclear if this assumption holds true in a context of continued insecurity. The Nigerian case highlights the challenges of implementing effective local-level stabilization efforts while working with and through a host government that lacks political commitment, capacity, and coordination."

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"It Started With Porn"


Moisés Naím erläutert, warum die Technik zur täuschend echten Manipulation digitaler Bilder ("deepfake") auch in der Sicherheitspolitik bald zu einer Gefahr werden könnte. "Image manipulation is nothing new. Authoritarian governments have a long history of 'disappearing' disgraced leaders from official photographs. And since 1990 Photoshop has allowed users to alter digital photographs, a practice that has become so common it is considered a verb by Merriam-Webster. But deepfake is different. And much more dangerous. In just the year since the fake celebrity porn videos appeared, the technology has improved dramatically. Everything about these videos is hyper realistic, and the person’s voice and gestures are so exactly rendered that it becomes impossible to know it is a forgery without using sophisticated verification programs. And perhaps the biggest danger of deepfake is that the technology is available to anyone. (...) The possible uses of deepfake in politics, economics, or international relations are as varied as they are sinister. The release of a video showing a presidential candidate saying or doing reprehensible things shortly before the elections will certainly become a more commonly used election trick. (...) The counterfeit videos’ potential to cloud relations between countries and exacerbate international conflicts is also enormous."

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"Why Trump’s Pragmatic Diplomacy on North Korea Could Pay Dividends"


George Perkovich meint, dass US-Präsident Trump gegenüber Nordkorea in der Praxis eine überraschend pragmatische Strategie verfolge. Angesichts der komplizierten Ausgangslage sei dies der richtige Ansatz. Der Erfolg werde letztlich von der Bereitschaft der US-Regierung abhängen, von Nordkorea nicht zu schnell zu viel zu verlangen. "Naturally, the United States and its allies would prefer a more immediate verifiable elimination of the North Korean nuclear threat. So, too, North Korean leaders want a quicker normalization of relations and the permanent removal of sanctions. While imperfect for everyone, extending the phased process that has now begun to remove threats and provide reassurances could significantly improve international security. There is no other way to a more perfect outcome."

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"The New Killer Pathogens: Countering the Coming Bioweapons Threat"


Die Fortschritte in der Gentechnologie haben die Sorge vor einem Missbrauch der neuen Möglichkeiten in Form von biologischen Waffen neu aufleben lassen, schreibt Katherine Charlet. Experten warnten, dass in Bedrängnis geratene Staaten entsprechende Waffenprogramme entwickeln und damit die internationale Ordnung destabilisieren könnten. "Understanding the risks that biological weapons pose today requires a closer look at how states have historically weighed their benefits and drawbacks. Since 1945, only six countries have publicly admitted developing biological weapons, although sufficient evidence exists to suspect a dozen or more. As the biological warfare expert W. Seth Carus has pointed out, states have pursued these weapons for a number of different reasons. (...) In seeking to prevent the use of biological weapons, governments, businesses, and scientists must arm themselves with equal parts fear and confidence, urgency and pragmatism. Given recent technological advancements, the consequences of a return to an era of states with biological weapons programs would be devastating. But a sound strategy to keep the disincentives strong can keep that possibility in the realm of fiction."

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"The Return of Global Russia: An Analytical Framework"


Paul Stronski und Richard Sokolsky haben in ihrer umfassenden Analyse die politischen Hintergründe und Zielsetzungen der Rückkehr Russlands als global agierende Großmacht untersucht. "Though its foreign actions are often opportunistic, Russia increasingly aims to create a multipolar world in which it plays a more prominent role. Moscow’s national security establishment broadly supports this international outreach, which will likely remain an enduring feature of Russian foreign policy. Washington and its allies must carefully judge Russian actions case by case and respond in concert when possible."

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"When States Pretend to Be Terrorists or Hacktivists in Cyberspace"


Tim Maurer von der Cyber Policy Initiative der Carnegie Endowment for International Peace erläutert in diesem Interview, auf welche Weise Staaten im Internet "unter falscher Flagge" agieren, um ihre Verantwortung für Spionageoperationen und Cyberkriegsführung zu verschleiern. "A false flag operation in the context of offensive cyber operations can consist of several methods. For example, a state actor could simply create a false online identity, say of a hacktivist group that pretends to be associated with the Islamic State, and then use the profile to issue a statement claiming credit for the attack, to create the appearance that the terrorist group rather than the state actor was behind the operation. Another method is to make it look as if the malicious activity originates from whomever the attacker is trying to frame, or to use malware that’s been tied to another malicious actor as part of the offensive cyber operation. (...) We don’t have a comprehensive picture to date to really assess how common false flag operations are, compared to non-false flag operations. In fact, in many cases we still lack certainty if a nation-state, proxy, or nonstate actor was responsible for the operation."

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"The Real Problem With a Nuclear Ban Treaty"


Matthew Harries ist der Ansicht, dass ein Erfolg bei den UN-Verhandlungen über ein Verbot von Atomwaffen vor allem Russland und China in die Hände spielen würde. Die praktischen Maßnahmen zur Durchsetzung einer theoretisch sicher zu begrüßenden atomwaffenfreien Welt würden vor allem die USA treffen, so Harries. "The main way for a ban treaty to achieve anything of substance is to throw grit into the bearings of U.S. extended deterrence. It could do so by various means. It might contribute to pressure to withdraw U.S. nuclear weapons from their NATO host countries in Europe, or at least pressure on those countries not to procure replacements for their nuclear-capable aircraft. More broadly, it might make it harder for NATO to present a united front against Russian nuclear saber rattling—a direct threat to existing global norms of nuclear restraint — by pitching the alliance back into fractious debates about the role of nuclear weapons, on which a delicate consensus has been reached in recent years."

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"Is a Pakistan-India War Just One Terrorist Attack Away?"


Toby Dalton und George Perkovich warnen, dass die gegenwärtig wieder sehr angespannten Beziehungen zwischen Indien und Pakistan im Falle eines von Pakistan ausgehenden Angriffs oder Terroranschlags schnell in einen offenen Krieg eskalieren könnten. "If a new attack occurs and inflicts major casualties in India, especially among civilians in the heartland, the kudos the Modi government won at home for the response to Uri will compel it to act more forcefully. Pakistani military and civilian leaders, fearful of each other and of militant political forces, cannot let a substantial Indian military operation against targets on Pakistani soil go unanswered. (...) Indian and Pakistani leaders may continue to be lucky but, as all gamblers know, luck can depart without warning. Continuing to rely on luck to prevent escalation, rather than seeking to stabilise the existing equilibrium and to pursue actual means and structures to guide relations, is a strategic risk for both states."

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"Charting the Post–Cold War U.S.-Japan Alliance"


Die Carnegie Endowment for International Peace hat die Entwicklung der vielfältigen diplomatischen Beziehungen zwischen den USA und Japan seit dem Ende des Kalten Krieges in einem interaktiven Diagramm aufgearbeitet. "Since the Cold War’s end, the United States and Japan have tried to give new purpose to their alliance by expanding cooperation while managing economic tensions — with mixed results. Use this resource to explore the modern evolution of the U.S.-Japan alliance across several policy categories. Click through the initiatives to see the actors involved and learn about their activities and achievements."

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