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International Relations and Security Network

This Week at the ISN

Our Weekly Content Roundup

11 - 15 April 2016

JUMP TO » Editorial Plan | Security Watch | Blog | Video

//   Security Watch

This week, our first Security Watch (SW) series focuses on China’s growing exasperation with North Korea’s “nuclear
defiance”; the resurgence of the Indian Navy; Syria’s status in the wake of Russia’s military intervention in the country;
China’s ongoing military reorganization; and the role ex-rebel political parties can play is peace processes. Then, in our
second SW series, we look at why the United Kingdom should stay in the EU; Eritrea's ongoing refugee crisis; Dambisa
Moyo’s perspectives on global economic growth; the business dimensions of humanitarianism; and the prospects and
pitfalls of South Asian Integration.

Will China Change its North Korea Policy?
11 April 2016

The desire to maintain stability on the Korean peninsula has long motivated China to cultivate close ties with North Korea
and even excuse its nuclear activities. But maybe not anymore, says Scott Snyder. Pyongyang’s recent “nuclear defiance”
is causing Beijing to wonder if its strategic interests are being put at risk. » More

What Do the Alternatives to EU Membership Look Like?
11 April 2016

Why should the United Kingdom stay in the EU? Philip Hammond believes the country will be stronger, safer and better off
if it remains within a reformed (!) Union. Ah, but will London ultimately be able to preserve its current privileges and also
obtain the opt-outs and exemptions it wants from an “ever closer union”? » More

Riding Two Horses At Once: Wither The Indian Navy?
12 April 2016

According to Geoffrey Till, the International Fleet Review held last February at the Indian port of Vishakhapatnam
displayed the mutual comity between 50 of the world’s navies. It also provided an opportunity for the resurgent Indian
Navy to unveil its maritime aspirations, which include being a rule-shaper rather than a rule-follower. » More 

Eritrea's Refugee Crisis and the Role of International Community
12 April 2016

The UNHCR estimates that 5,000 Eritreans are fleeing their country each month. Today, Redie Bereketeab blames the
1998-2000 war with Ethiopia, the dysfunctional Warsay-Yekealo development program, a feckless international community
and a host of other prosperity-killing difficulties for the problem. » More

Syria after the Russian Intervention
13 April 2016

Russia continues to maintain its military presence in Syria and build up Bashar al-Assad’s forces. At the same time, it
seems keen to resolve the country’s civil war. K Y Oweis isn’t worried if Moscow is sincere or not. He believes the peace
talks in Geneva represent a real opportunity to bolster the current ceasefire and then go beyond it. » More

A Look at Global Economic Growth: An Interview with Dambisa Moyo
13 April 2016

What’s the appropriate role of intergovernmental institutions in international economic development? Under what
circumstances are countries more likely to work together for global growth? What’s the relationship between technology
and development? Today, noted economist Dambisa Moyo grapples with these questions and many others. » More

China’s Military Reorganization – and America’s Window of Opportunity
14 April 2016

In September 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that the People’s Liberation Army would be reduced by
300,000 troops. As J T Dreyer sees it, the adjustment doesn’t demonstrate China’s commitment to peace and
disarmament, as it announced. Instead, it’s designed to create a leaner and meaner fighting force. » More

Humanitarian Business
14 April 2016

In this review of “Humanitarian Business,” which is Thomas Weiss’ celebrated new book, Kai Chen explores both the
negative and positive aspects of the three dominant characteristics of modern humanitarian action – marketization,
politicization and militarization. » More

The Role of Ex-Rebel Parties in Building Peace
15 April 2016

When it comes to post-conflict peacebuilding, Clare Castillejo believes that political parties with their roots in rebel
movements have a particularly important role to play. In this article, she explores three examples of this phenomenon,
along with the factors that enable such parties to contribute to a durable peace. » More

South Asian Integration: Prospects and Pitfalls
15 April 2016

According to Gareth Price, India’s regional dominance is a two-edged sword. It can exploit the South Asian Association for
Regional Cooperation (SAARC) to promote economic prosperity and political stability, but what about the country’s
neighbors who want to continue defining themselves as “not India”? » More

//   Blog

Australia’s 2016 Defence White Paper: ASEAN and the South China Sea
11 April 2016

As Ristian Supriyanto sees it, Australia’s most recent Defence White Paper advocates a strategy of “reactionary
assertiveness,” particularly in the South China Sea. Such an approach will almost certainly spur freedom of navigation
operations, anticipatory military modernization, and more complicated relations between ASEAN, China and the US.
» More

Autocrats United? Electing the African Union’s Peace and Security Council
12 April 2016

Since the African Union’s Peace and Security Council (PSC) is an important player in the day-to-day management of
peace and security issues on the continent, it’s not surprising that Paul Williams might be distressed. That’s because an
unprecedented number of authoritarian states have now been elected to sit on the PSC. » More

Spoiler Alert – How Governments Can Undermine Peace Agreements
13 April 2016

One out of two civil war settlements fail to yield a sustained peace. As the CSS’ Benno Zogg sees it, one reason why this
rate is so staggeringly high is the ‘spoiler’ role played by governments. After all, they have a host of nonviolent tools
available to impede or violate peace agreements for their own ends. » More

The US Presidential Election and its Implications on Middle East Policy
14 April 2016

Well, we couldn’t put off dealing with this subject any longer. That’s why we picked Sigurd Neubauer to describe how the
current crop of US presidential candidates would most likely direct US foreign policy in the Middle East. According to
Neubauer, none of them would deviate too far from the broad outlines of the current American approach. » More

Interview – Bruce Bueno de Mesquita
15 April 2016

In this interview, NYU’s Bruce de Mesquita contemplates the futility of system-level structural theories in international
relations; the absent link between polarity and instability; the benefits of studying leaders rather than states; the links
between comparative and international politics, and a host of other issue. » More

//   Video

In El Niño's Wake: Examining Africa's Latest Food Crisis

In this video, three analysts discuss the current drought in Eastern and Southern Africa, which has left up to 60 million
people desperate for emergency food aid. The analysts specifically focus on the scale and impact of the current crisis and
evaluate the international community’s response thus far.
» More

The Emerging Law of 21st Century War

In this video, legal expert Harold Hongju Koh focuses on the norms-driven issues facing international law, justice, and
policy, including the torture and detention of suspected terrorists, targeted killings, the US’ current lethal drones program,
cyber and robotic warfare, etc. » More

Asia's Latent Nuclear Powers: Japan, South Korea and Taiwan

In this video, Mark Fitzpatrick and Robert Gallucci discuss the former’s new book, “Asia’s Latent Nuclear Powers,” which
contemplates under what conditions the above three countries would seek to join the nuclear weapons club, particularly
given the growing threats they face from nuclear-armed adversaries. » More

//   Multimedia Content
Here is a selection of this week's additions to the ISN » Digital

Publications     » More
//  Australia’s 2016 Defence White Paper: ASEAN and the South China Sea » More
//  Yemen: Is Peace Possible?
» More
//  A Russian Withdrawal from Syria, or Merely a Change in the Form of Involvement? » More 
/ / The Montreux Document and the International Code of Conduct » More
//  A New PLA for a New Era » More
//  Georgian Drift: The Crisis of Georgia's Way Westwards » More 

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