From free rider to train driver?

The pull-out of their armed forces by the U.S. and other NATO allies, the escalation of violence, and the spectre of Taliban rule have triggered a flurry of diplomatic activity by neighbouring countries, including India, Pakistan and Iran, Russia and China. Fuelling just as much speculation is how the new situation might unfold. After all, the withdrawal will make the country an epicentre for regional power struggles.

Indo-Pacific: Europe’s geopolitical ghost ride

It may sound like a matter of routine: The German frigate ‘Bayern’ is about to set sail and spend several months cruising in the Indian Ocean and the Western Pacific. The Defense Ministry merely wants to see this just as a “sign” to fly the flag where Germany’s “values and interests are affected”. However, behind this there is a fundamental paradigm shift.

Militarization: Adventure Trip to the Pacific

The deployment of the frigate ‚Bayern’ to a cruise in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific in summer this year is intended to lend substance to the “Guidelines on the Indo-Pacific” adopted by the German government last September and to the pronouncements of Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Minister of Defense, that it “will expand its commitment to security policy to the Indo-Pacific”.

RCEP: „Blood, Sweat, and Tears“

Uwe Hoering, www.beltandroad.blog November 2020. This is the result of “eight years of negotiating with blood, sweat and tears,” Malaysian Trade Minister Azmin Ali reportedly told the press on the occasion of the conclusion of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi. The dramatic characterization echoes the famous inaugural speech of WinstonContinue reading “RCEP: „Blood, Sweat, and Tears“”