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Giudizio storico Historical judgement

Geostrategic environment (september 12, 2022)

“Open and complex space, we are for dialogue between different ideas – There are no unique sources for an analyst”

The Human Development Report 2021-22 (UNDP) is a strategic document of great importance.

The central point, which directly affects our reflections on the world, is what is called the “uncertainty complex”. Constituting it, is said, are three volatile and interacting strands: the destabilizing planetary pressures and inequalities of the Anthropocene, the pursuit of sweeping societal transformations to ease those pressures and the widespread and intensifying polarization.

We focus our attention on two key-words: complexity and uncertainty. Both are not new because they belong to the nature of reality. For too many years, in fact, we have imagined being able to apply the paradigms of certainty and linearity to govern an uncertain and complex world: the perfect synthesis is that we have lived, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to today, “in the absence of politics”.

We are at a turning point: the real choice is between competition-cooperation, mediation-negotiation, dialogue, vision or letting things go as usual. If we really want to build a “planetary destiny” we need to change course.

If man has left a very (perhaps too) heavy imprint on the world, it is the same man who can open up different, political scenarios. We will continue, with our work, to insist on the spirit of dialogue and on the importance of negotiation: it is not with oppositions, in fact, that we will be able to contribute making the world a better place.

(by M.E.)

TOPICS

WORLDS

  • (Afghanistan) September 4, 2022. . Rasanah: International Institute for Iranian Studies. The Afghan government collapsed on August 31, 2021, after Afghan soldiers surrendered to the Taliban which vowed to set up a new Islamic emirate following an earlier peace deal brokered with the United States in Doha, Qatar. But a year later, Afghanistan continues to grapple with violence and faces a humanitarian crisis. One year after the Taliban’s takeover, it is important to review the developments on the internal and external fronts, which will allow prospective scenarios to be laid out concerning the future of Afghanistan. The report is divided into two parts. The first part discusses the internal developments, shedding light on five topics: democracy and government formation; women’s rights and education, minorities, the opposition forces, and the economic situation. The second part reviews the Taliban’s foreign relations with its neighbors; regional and international powers, and the factors that will impact the Taliban’s foreign policy in the future. One Year Since the Taliban Takeover: The Group’s Unassailable Grip on Power and the Impasse in Its Foreign Policy
  • (Africa) September 10, 2022. Al Ahram. Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly called on the heads of top African courts who are meeting in Cairo to formulate joint principles and constitutional guarantees to protect and develop the continent’s natural resources for “our peoples and future generations.”. African states need to institute constitutional guarantees to protect their natural resources: Egypt PM
  • (Australia – Indo Pacific) September 12, 2022. Graeme Dobell, The Strategist. The Asian century isn’t turning out how Australia had hoped. Australia’s Indo-Pacific hope: equilibrium
  • (Chile) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. Violence broke out after people took to the streets of Chile to commemorate the 49th anniversary of the 1973 coup that installed the murderous Augusto Pinochet dictatorship. Photos: Sporadic clashes as Chile marks coup anniversary
  • (China) September 12, 2022. Global Times. Chinese scientists’ research showed the lunar soil samples brought back by the Chang’e-5 mission contain high content of water originated from solar wind. Chinese scientists find high water content in lunar soil samples brought back by Chang’e-5 mission
  • (China) September 12, 2022. , The Strategist. As the Chinese Communist Party’s year-end congress approaches, competition among the party factions is heating up. Not only will the five-yearly party congress, set to begin on 16 October, appoint a new Politburo Standing Committee, China’s highest decision-making body, but more importantly it is expected to extend General Secretary Xi Jinping for an unprecedented third term.  From the bookshelf: ‘Rethinking Chinese politics’
  • (Egypt) September 11, 2022. Dina Ezzat, Ahram Online. With a decree, issued earlier in the summer, to extend the administrative boundaries of Cairo to include the New Administrative Capital, Cairo is again proving to be a city eternal, no matter the metamorphosis, architect and restorer Mona Zakaria says. On Cairo’s soul, transformations, and survival
  • (Egypt) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Hani Suweilam said that Egypt is one of the world’s most affected countries by climate change, noting that the country is suffering water scarcity, high temperature, erosion and saltwater intrusion into fresh water. Egypt among countries most affected by climate change induced water scarcity: Irrigation minister
  • (Egypt) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. The Egyptian national dialogue’s board of trustees completed its selection of rapporteurs and assistant rapporteurs for its three main track (political, economic, social) subcommittees during a meeting on Saturday, in preparation for the beginning of the presidential initiative sessions. Egyptian national dialogue’s full squad selected, four new subcommittees added
  • (Egypt) September 12, 2022. HRW. The Egyptian government has severely curtailed environmental groups’ ability to carry out independent policy, advocacy, and field work essential to protecting the country’s natural environment, Human Rights Watch said today. These restrictions violate the rights to freedom of assembly and association and threaten Egypt’s ability to uphold its environmental and climate action commitments, as Egypt hosts the COP27 climate summit in November 2022. Egypt: Government Undermining Environmental Groups
  • (Egypt) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. Egypt is “very keen” to allow the greatest possible number of local and foreign civil society organisations to participate and express their views in the 2022 UN Climate Change Conference (COP27), Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said on Sunday. Egypt keen to allow greatest possible number of NGOs to participate in COP27: PM
  • (Egypt) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry reiterated Egypt’s firm stance on the need to reach a comprehensive agreement on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) as soon as possible in a meeting on Sunday with the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Hanna Tetteh. Egypt’s FM calls for GERD deal as soon as possible in meeting with UN Horn of Africa envoy
  • (Egypt – USA) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. The Egyptian Armed Forces are keen to boost military and security cooperation with the United States, Minister of Defence and Military Production Mohamed Zaki said in a meeting in Egypt with Commander of US Central Command Michael Kurilla on Sunday. Egypt keen to boost military cooperation with US: Defence minister to CENTCOM commander
  • (Ethiopia) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. Ethiopia’s Tigray rebels said Sunday they were ready to take part in peace talks led by the African Union, removing an obstacle to potential negotiations with the government to end almost two years of brutal warfare. Ethiopia’s Tigray rebels say ready for AU-led peace talks
  • (Europe) September 12, 2022. John Psaropoulos, Al Jazeera. European leaders have approved an unprecedented combination of energy subsidies and financial measures aimed at making the continent less reliant on Russian coal, oil and gas and, increasingly, it looks as though political will is stiffening to make that independence permanent. Europe hopes to reap political dividends from an expensive winter
  • (France – Namibia) September 12, 2022. French independent power producer HDF Energy expects its green hydrogen power plant in Namibia, Africa’s first, to start producing electricity by 2024, according to a senior company executive. Africa’s first hydrogen power plant to produce electricity by 2024
  • (France – Sahel) September 6, 2022. Benedikt Erforth, German Institute of Development and Sustainability. After nearly a decade of military intervention, France has withdrawn its soldiers from Mali. The departure not only symbolises a failure of French intervention policy, argue Benedikt Erforth (IDOS) and Denis Tull (SWP) in this Megatrends Afrika Spotlight, but also reflects Europe’s foreign policy weakness. Yet, a more muted French footprint could also be an opportunity to build a more balanced and credible approach towards the Sahel. The failure of French Sahel policy: an opportunity for European cooperation?
  • (Germany) September 8, 2022. Kiel Institute for the World Economy. According to the latest forecast of the Kiel Institute, the upturn in the German economy will be sharply interrupted by the consequences of the Russian war against the Ukraine. In the current year, GDP is still expected to grow by 1.4 percent, 0.7 points less than forecast in June. For next year, the Kiel Institute is revising its forecast downward by 4 percentage points—instead of a strong plus, the German economy is expected to contract by 0.7 percent. Inflation is expected to be even higher next year at 8.7 percent than this year at 8 percent. While sticking to Germany´s constitutional debt brake should be possible in 2023, it is doubtful in 2024. Autumn forecast: High energy prices push German economy into recession
  • (Germany) September 6, 2022. Tim Bosch, Kira Vinke, German Council on Foreign Relations. The uneven distribution of climate impacts and emissions has long hindered a coherent international response to climate change. Moreover, given the return of great power politics, revisionist powers appear ready to weaponize the dependencies that result from attempting to address such challenges multilaterally – even at the expense of their own long-term security. Although the need to respond to Russia’s war in Ukraine has made the political case for fighting climate change harder to make, Germany must prioritize climate as a collective, global dimension of its security as it drafts its National Security Strategy (NSS). Integrating Climate in Germany’s National Security Strategy
  • (Iran – USA) September 12, 2022. Maziar Motamedi, Al Jazeera. Iran and the United States look like they are once again far away from an agreement on restoring their 2015 nuclear deal, despite recent hopes that more than 17 months of negotiations were finally heading towards a positive conclusion. What are the latest issues stopping an Iran-US nuclear agreement?
  • (Israel) September 12, 2022. Doron Peskin, Al Monitor. The Israeli government is seeing record income from natural gas sale royalties. Data released recently by the Royalties Department at the Ministry of Energy shows that in the first half of 2022, a significant jump of about 48% was recorded in the total royalties collected from natural gas. Israeli natural gas revenues boom
  • (Israel – Iran) September 12, 2022. The head of Israel’s spy agency Mossad said the revival of a nuclear deal with world powers will not give Iran “immunity” from Israeli operations. Mossad chief: Iran nuclear deal won’t halt Israeli ‘operations’
  • (Israel – Palestine) September 12, 2022. Ahmad Melhem, Al Monitor. Palestinians are waking up almost every day to news of violence and armed clashes across the West Bank. Israel watches closely as West Bank seethes
  • (Lebanon) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. Lebanon’s central bank says it has stopped providing dollars for gasoline imports, a move that will likely lead to higher and more volatile prices as well as increased pressure on the local currency, which continues to lose value as the country’s economic crisis shows few signs of abating. Lebanon central bank stops fuel subsidies, prices set to rise
  • (Libya) September 12, 2022. The Libya Observer. NOC to implement plan to increase oil production to two million barrels per day
  • (Libya) September 11, 2022. The Libya Observer. The Head of the Qatari Shura Council, Hassan bin Abdullah Al-Ghanim, reiterated in a meeting with the visiting Libyan House of Representatives’ (HoR) Speaker, Aqila Saleh, Doha’s support for all efforts leading to peace and stability in Libya, unity of its territories, and the achievement of all aspirations of the Libyan people, in addition to backing up all Security Council resolutions in this regard. Shura Council’s Head reiterates to Aqila Saleh Qatar’s support for achieving peace in Libya
  • (Libya) September 11, 2022. The Libya Observer. In a letter issued on Saturday and sent to Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmad Aboul Gheit, 54 members of the House of Representatives (HoR) – Parliamentarians Against Extension – called on the Arab League to exert more efforts for holding general elections that end the conflict for legitimacy, adding that they are speaking through the Foreign Ministry. 54 members of Libya’s HoR call for holding elections to end legitimacy conflict
  • (Libya) September 11, 2022. The Libya Observer. The Speaker of the Libyan House of Representatives (HoR) Aqila Saleh, along with a delegation that included Khalifa Haftar’s son Belgassem, met on Sunday with the Emir of Qatar Shiekh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Doha, Qatar News Agency has reported. Qatar’s Emir and HoR Speaker Aqila Saleh discuss latest developments in Libya
  • (Libya) September 11, 2022. Ahram Online. Ten years after the US ambassador to Libya was killed in the eastern city of Benghazi, the country remains in turmoil and Washington is vying for influence with other foreign powers. 10 years after Benghazi attack, US struggles to calm Libya chaos
  • (North Korea – Russia) September 8, 2022. Christian MöllingAndrás Rácz, German Council on Foreign Relations. North Korea may supply Russia with ammunition for artillery systems, and also send workers to Donbas, in exchange for energy and material support. North Korean Ammunition for Russia
  • (Philippines) September 12, 2022. HRW. The United Nations Human Rights Council should adopt a strong resolution addressing the dire human rights situation in the Philippines during its 51st session, which starts September 12, 2022, Human Rights Watch said today. Philippines: Strong UN Rights Council Action Needed
  • (Russia) September 12, 2022. Niko Vorobyov, Al Jazeera. In recent months, the health of Russian President Vladimir Putin has been the subject of much speculation, with claims that he has cancer, Parkinson’s, or has even survived an assassination attempt. Russia post-Putin: What happens if the president suddenly dies?
  • (Russia – Arctic) September 2022. LSE Ideas. In this latest Strategic Update, Col Robert A. McVey Jr addresses why Russia has dramatically changed its Arctic strategy since 2007, committing significant military and fiscal resources to the region. McVey additionally describes the diplomatic, information, legal, and military tools of national power that Russia is craftily employing to pursue, promote, and protect its growing strategic economic interests in the Arctic, finding that the possibility of conflict between great powers remains ever present, regardless of the potential for cooperation or competition. Given that Russia’s Arctic strategy is primarily driven by economic interests, this paper makes five key recommendations for U.S. policymakers and military leaders, focusing on security cooperation programmes with NATO allies and the Arctic states. Russian Strategic Interest in Arctic Heats Up as Ice Melts
  • (Russia – Ukraine) September 12, 2022. Ahram Online. Russia said Monday its forces were striking parts of the eastern Kharkiv region retaken by Ukraine, vowing to continue its military action in the country. Russia says striking east Ukraine, ‘no prospects’ for talks
  • (Russia – Ukraine) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. The United Nations has condemned Moscow’s “intimidation” of critics opposed to Russia’s war in Ukraine, warning it is undermining fundamental freedoms. UN denounces Russian ‘intimidation’ of Ukraine war opponents
  • (Russia – Ukraine) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. Ukrainian forces outnumbered Russian troops by eight times during the rapid Ukrainian counteroffensive in the northeastern Kharkiv region, a Russian-installed official said. Ukraine troops ‘outnumbered Russia’s 8 times’ in counterattack
  • (Russia – Ukraine) September 11, 2022. IAEA. A back-up power line to Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) has been restored, providing the plant with the external electricity it needs for reactor cooling and other essential safety functions, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) learnt at the site today.  Update 100 – IAEA Director General Statement on Situation in Ukraine
  • (Russia – Ukraine) September 11, 2022. Kateryna Stepanenko, Grace Mappes, George Barros, Angela Howard, and Mason Clark, Institute for the Study of War. The Ukrainian counteroffensive in Kharkiv Oblast is routing Russian forces and collapsing Russia’s northern Donbas axis. Russian Offensive Campaign Assessment, September 10
  • (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation) September 12, 2022. Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Global Times. The 22nd Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) will take place in the historical city of Samarkand, Uzbekistan on September 15-16. The SCO Samarkand Summit: Dialogue and cooperation in an interconnected world
  • (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation) September 12, 2022. Anil Trigunayat, CNBC. The SCO Summit is a good opportunity for the leaders to take stock of the regional and global challenges and enhance cooperation in addressing the common goals and objectives in a concerted manner. This Sco Summit Is Unlikely To Be Any Different
  • (Sweden) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. Sweden’s conservative parties look set to win power in Sunday’s general election, taking a razor-thin lead amid a surge in support for the far-right. Swedish opposition inches ahead in cliffhanger election
  • (Syria) September 12, 2022. The Syrian Observer. Germany has asserted that Syrians have not been brought to peace by Russian-sponsored, so-called “settlement” and “reconciliation” agreements between the Assad regime and opposition factions in various areas. Germany: ‘Reconciliation’ Agreements with Assad Regime did not Bring Peace to Syrians
  • (Syria) September 12, 2022. The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) issued a report on narcotic manufacturing and cannabis cultivation in areas under Iran-backed militias’ influence in Deir-ez-Zor. Iran-Backed Militias Run 7 Narcotic-Manufacturing Laboratories in Syria’s Deir-ez-Zor
  • (Syria) September 12, 2022. The Syrian Observer. For the second consecutive week, Syrian government forces continue to besiege the town of Jassim in the northern countryside of Daraa, south Syria. Government Forces Conduct Arrests, Build Posts In Syria’s Daraa
  • (Syria) September 12, 2022. The Syrian Observer. During its meeting on Saturday, the government team charged with implementing the integrated electronic management system for government support operations discussed the implementation of decisions related to reorienting subsidies. Prime Minister Hussein Arnous chaired the meeting. Government Discusses Excluding New Categories from Subsidy System
  • (Syria) September 12, 2022. The Syrian Observer. The Syrian regime’s Ministry of Finance announced its approval to trade treasury bonds issued in the second auction for 2022, starting from next Monday’s session in the Damascus Securities Exchange. Budget Deficit Pushes Central Bank to Offer Treasury Bonds on Stock Exchange
  • (Uganda – Democratic Republic of the Congo) September 12, 2022. Al Jazeera. Uganda has paid $65m in the first instalment of the $325m it was ordered to pay the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) as compensation for losses caused by wars in the 1990s when Ugandan troops occupied Congolese territory. Uganda pays first installment of $325m war reparations to DRC
  • (UK) September 12, 2022. East Asia Forum. It is fair to say that expectations for the prime ministership of Liz Truss are not Himalayan in dimension. For Britain, the sun also sets in the East
  • (UK) September 11, 2022. L Alan Winters, East Asia Forum. Despite initiating the largest change in trade policy in 50 years — leaving the European Union — the UK government still has no trade strategy. United Kingdom’s tilt to Asia no panacea for ailing British trade
  • (USA) September 11, 2022. Al Ahram. The United States faces “a risk” of recession as its battle against inflation could slow the nation’s economy, but a serious downturn can still be avoided, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Sunday. “Certainly a risk” of US recession, Yellen says
  • (USA) September 6, 2022. Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. We are in an exceptionally challenging civil-military environment. Many of the factors that shape civil-military relations have undergone extreme strain in recent years. Geopolitically, the winding down of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the ramping up of great power conflict mean the U.S. military must simultaneously come to terms with wars that ended without all the goals satisfactorily accomplished while preparing for more daunting competition with near-peer rivals. Socially, the pandemic and the economic dislocations have disrupted societal patterns and put enormous strain on individuals and families. Politically, military professionals confront an extremely adverse environment characterized by the divisiveness of affective polarization that culminated in the first election in over a century when the peaceful transfer of political power was disrupted and in doubt. Looking ahead, all of these factors could well get worse before they get better. In such an environment, it is helpful to review the core principles and best practices by which civilian and military professionals have conducted healthy American civil-military relations in the past — and can continue to do so, if vigilant and mindful. To Support and Defend: Principles of Civilian Control and Best Practices of Civil-Military Relations
  • (USA) September 9, 2022. Chris Stirewalt, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. It’s been more than six months since the first primary of the 2022 midterms and we still haven’t come to a satisfactory answer to the most important question of any cycle: What’s the climate like? Stirewaltisms: House Forecast Calls for Climate Change
  • (USA) September 9, 2022. Matt Weidinger, Tim Sprunt, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. Rahm Emanuel, then chief of staff to President-elect Barack Obama, famously issued what has come to be known as Rahm’s rule: “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that [is] it’s an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.”. The “Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste” Crowd Strikes Again
  • (USA – China – Southeast Asia) September 12, 2022. Thi Mai Anh Nguyen, The Interpreter. Is Southeast Asia solely an arena of competition in which only either the United States or China can win? Or could it be an arena of cooperation that concurrently benefits all players, namely the United States, China, and the members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations? US-China rivalry in Southeast Asia need not be a zero-sum game
  • (USA – Philippines) September 11, 2022. Brian Harding, Haroro J. Ingram, Lawfare. The election in May of Ferdinand Marcos Jr. as the 17th president of the Philippines presents an opportunity to reset U.S.-Philippines relations after six rocky years while President Rodrigo Duterte held the office. Bangsamoro Peace and the U.S.-Philippines Alliance
  • (USA – South Caucasus) September 11, 2022. US Department of State. To promote regional peace and cooperation, the United States is pleased to announce $2,000,000 for humanitarian demining operations in areas affected by the fall 2020 intensive fighting between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in the South Caucasus. $2 Million in New U.S. Humanitarian Demining Assistance for the South Caucasus
  • (Yemen) September 9, 2022. Katherine Zimmerman, Brian Carter, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. Tempered optimism persists over a peace in Yemen after nearly eight years of war. A UN-negotiated truce has largely held since April 2022 between the Houthis, who seized power in September 2014, and the internationally recognized Yemeni government, backed by a Saudi-led coalition. Amid Yemen’s Truce, al Qaeda Threatens to Return