Geostrategic magazine (june 5, 2024)


The Global Eye

Daily from global think tanks and open sources

(the analyzes here recalled do not necessarily correspond to the geostrategic thinking of The Global Eye)

ANZUS – Pacific

(Michael Pezzullo – ASPI The Strategist) China is seeking to establish itself as the hegemonic power in Asia, using coercion and intimidation, and by challenging US primacy. It appears to be willing to use force to achieve its aims, perhaps from 2027. It is deepening its military alliance with Russia. If China continues on its present course, the likelihood of major war occurring before 2030 in the ‘Pacific Area’ is at least 10 percent, if not higher.

ANZUS and the fabric of peace in the Pacific | The Strategist (


(Henry Campbell and John Coyne – ASPI The Strategist) Australians want a bold vision for their future economic prosperity. They want not just to create new opportunities but to align them with our values and international commitments, not the least of which is the clean energy transition. Critical minerals should be central to this vision, and dig-and-ship is no longer the answer. The government’s 2024–25 budget outlines the vision and commits new funding to it, but more is needed to address commercial, technological and economic fundamentals.

Paying for A Future Made in Australia | The Strategist (

Australia – Indonesia – Israel – Palestine

(Ben Scott – ASPI The Strategist) The Israeli-Palestinian conflict matters more to Australians and Indonesians than either country’s foreign policy elite previously acknowledged. So, Canberra and Jakarta should cooperate to help resolve it. They should articulate a joint vision of the two-state solution and build international support for it. That could encourage, shape and shorten future Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.

Australia and Indonesia should get to work on Israel and Palestine | The Strategist (


(Dmitry Bolkunets – The Jamestown Foundation) Western efforts to trigger the release of at least 1,559 political prisoners in Belarus, who are forced to endure inhumane conditions and extreme repressions, have flagged since 2020. Belarus’s economic needs in the current geopolitical environment are opening windows to pressure Minsk to release more political prisoners, lest its position as a transit hub for goods from China and elsewhere be disrupted. The lack of political will in the European Union and the United States remains a stumbling block, but capitalizing on Belarus’s precarious position with transit pressures would likely produce results.

Ultimatum to Lukashenka Needed for Release of Political Prisoners in Belarus – Jamestown

Belarus – Azerbaijan

(Yauheni Preiherman – The Jamestown Foundation) Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka conducted a state visit to Azerbaijan to meet with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, where they reinforced their close personal bond and chemistry. The strong personal chemistry between Lukashenka and Aliyev appears to uphold the exceptionally close bilateral connections between Minsk and Baku in sectors that include military-technical cooperation, natural gas extraction and export, as well as construction of critical infrastructure. The visit, along with Lukashenka’s following meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, demonstrates the emphatically transactional and pragmatic nature of Minsk’s diplomacy.

Belarus Promotes Economic Interests in Azerbaijan – Jamestown

Cambodia – China

(Chansambath Bong – East Asia Forum) Cambodia’s foreign policy is driven by its need to survive between its larger neighbours, Thailand and Vietnam, while maintaining its autonomy amid its close relations with China. Phnom Penh has sought to diversify its foreign policy and trade ties with other countries like the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Brazil and Turkey without lessening China’s vital role. Cambodia is facing the ongoing challenge of balancing the risks of reliance on China with the security challenges posed by its neighbours.

Cambodia’s China policy a balancing act for Phnom Penh | East Asia Forum

Cambodia – Vietnam – Mekong Region 

(Yunkang Liu – East Asia Forum) Cambodia’s Funan Techo Canal project aims to decrease reliance on Vietnam’s trade routes, boost economic growth and improve water resource management. Yet, discussions surrounding the project are becoming increasingly securitised and politicised while concerns have arisen. Cambodia dismisses these concerns, emphasising its right to pursue development projects and its policy of neutrality. The project highlights the complex geopolitical landscape in the Mekong region, with discussions extending beyond Cambodia and Vietnam to involve various stakeholders. It also presents a potential opportunity for ASEAN to mediate tensions and manage regional conflicts.

Funan Techo Canal Project underscores Cambodia’s struggle for strategic autonomy | East Asia Forum


(Richard Herr – ASPI The Strategist) Fijian politics, already suffering from a risk that the governing coalition could fall apart, now faces the further danger that the opposition party, which would lead an alternative government, is also suffering a severe split.

Now an opposition split worsens Fiji’s political instability | The Strategist (


(Arun Swamy – East Asia Forum) India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has championed Hindu nationalism, leading to tension with religious minorities including Muslims and Christians. Controversial policies — including the construction of a Hindu temple at Ayodhya, the Citizenship Amendment Act and the possibility of a uniform civil code — further scapegoated Muslim communities. The BJP has also attempted to overcome internal divisions among Hindus by strategically using language and caste politics.

Plurality under BJP dominance | East Asia Forum

(Richard M. Rossow – Center for Strategic & International Studies) The results of the election for India’s powerful lower house of parliament, or Lok Sabha, were released today. The winning party or coalition of parties in this election choose the prime minister and form the government. Contrary to expectations and polling, the incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will fall short of a third consecutive single-party majority. Still, Modi is expected to remain head of government as leader of a coalition, though there is a scramble underway by opposition parties to try and pull away the BJP’s likely coalition partners.

India’s National Election: Surprise and Stability (

(Atlantic Council) Five more years, with a twist. India’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) lost ground in this year’s elections, according to early results announced Tuesday, meaning Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on track to lead a coalition government after winning a historic third consecutive term. The world’s largest democratic exercise—more than six hundred million people voted over six weeks—surprised pollsters and pundits, as opposition parties gained seats in parliament. What can we expect from a Modi-led coalition—the first time he has ever had to manage a political coalition? What was behind the electoral shifts?

Experts react: Modi loses ground in an electoral surprise. What will his third term look like now? – Atlantic Council

India – Australia

(Aarti Betigeri – Lowy The Interpreter) It’s a lesson in not believing exit polls, or not believing breathless hype, or listening closely to reporting from the grassroots, or all of the above. While the Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party has claimed success in India’s national elections, it is somewhat of a Pyrrhic victory, with the BJP ceding significant ground to the opposition INDIA alliance. Modi’s government has secured a third term in office – but the margin is far slimmer than expected, and it looks like the BJP won’t clinch a majority in the 543-member parliament so will have to rely on the support of coalition partners.

India’s proud history of anti-incumbency is back | Lowy Institute

India – Bangladesh

(Saimum Parvez – East Asia Forum) Bangladesh witnessed an ‘India Out’ campaign in 2024, fuelled by widespread outrage over alleged Indian interference in the nation’s parliamentary elections and a domestic push for the preference of local products over Indian imports. Critics claim an Indian intelligence agency orchestrated election manipulation to secure the ruling party’s win and some argue Indian interference intensified after the incumbent Awami League’s controversial fourth successive win, leading to escalated bilateral tensions.

India’s role in Bangladesh elections sparks outrage | East Asia Forum


(INSS) The Swords of Iron war has highlighted the urgent need for a new security strategy for Israel’s electricity sector, given the military threats that have materialized as well as the emerging climate risks and technological advancements. Israel’s unique status as an “electricity island,” cut off from neighboring power grids, coupled with its heavy dependence on the natural gas industry, makes it especially vulnerable to threats to its energy infrastructure. All these factors require Israel to formulate a new concept for the security of the electrical system, which will provide emergency response and also improve the system’s performance in routine times.

We Need a New Concept for the Security of Electrical Systems in Israel in Emergencies and Routine Times | INSS


(Chris Burgess – East Asia Forum) In Japan, foreigners still face racial barriers, even amid rapid societal diversification and an increasing foreign worker population. Despite Japan’s recent improvement in efforts, such as the new Specified Skilled Worker system allowing foreign blue-collar workers and their families to reside in the country, its policies still show limited support for multiculturalism and social integration. Migrants are often treated as guest workers, and their needs are not adequately addressed. The government should invest in proper infrastructure to address the disconnect between economic inclusion and social-political exclusion. As the need for labour increases, Japan needs to phase out its deeply entrenched ideology of a homogenous national identity to build a diverse and accepting society.

Japan’s multiculturalism fails to keep pace with rising migration | East Asia Forum


(Neeraj Singh Manhas – Lowy The Interpreter) Coral reefs, ring-like atolls, attractive beaches and teeming marine life – the Maldives is renowned for its scenic beauty. But these waterside attractions make the pressure on fresh water supplies in the Indian Ocean archipelago nation all the more incongruous. Water shortages are expected to grow worse with climate change. And for a nation dependent on tourism, and for the capital Malé, one of the most densely populated cities in the world, this spells trouble.

The fight for freshwater in the Maldives | Lowy Institute

Mexico – Central America

(María Fernanda Bozmoski – Atlantic Council) Mexico’s northern border with the United States has received a lot of attention, but its southern border—and, more broadly, its relations with Central American countries—deserves attention, too. For many years, the thinking went that Mexico was, in a way, Central America’s big brother. Dare we ask if the ascent of Claudia Sheinbaum, who on Sunday was elected as Mexico’s next president, will make her country Central America’s big sister? While she will likely focus mostly on domestic issues—including tackling the rising levels of violence and insecurity in the country—she also has an opportunity to positively reset ties with Mexico’s southern neighbors. Three areas to watch in this respect are climate change, nearshoring, and migration.

Three ways Mexico’s new president could transform Central America – Atlantic Council

Middle East and the Gulf

(Tamir Hayman – INSS) In spite of the severe damage it has sustained, Hamas is expected to recruit more terrorists to replenish its ranks. The Israeli leadership is still debating whether to make a decision—the decision that will effectively determine the fate of the war, after some eight months. But against this background, critical questions are already emerging: What are the advantages and disadvantages of an Israeli military administration in Gaza? What are the implications of this scenario for the capabilities of the IDF? And what is the significance of the Gulf States’ proposal for the “day after” the war?

An Alternative Civilian Entity to Administer the Gaza Strip—Urgently Needed | INSS


(Elisabeth Braw – Atlantic Council) National resilience has long been part of NATO’s mission; indeed, it has its very own paragraph in the North Atlantic Treaty. But for years, NATO allies neglected national resilience. Recently, however, many of them have realized that national resilience is fundamental to their security. Better yet, some are now taking innovative action to improve their resilience. Learning from the allies that are already taking action will give other allies that decide to enhance their resilience a leg up.

National resilience is a crucial part of defense. Here are the countries doing it right. – Atlantic Council

Russia – China

(Paul Globe – The Jamestown Foundation) Chinese plans to develop mines in Moscow oblast undercut the Kremlin’s longstanding efforts to keep such projects and the protests they provoke far away from the capital, lest they lead to political demonstrations near the Kremlin. This transformation of environmental issues into political issues is specially serious when foreigners are involved and show little concern for the ecological worries of the surrounding population. Putin’s “turn to the east” and his need for Chinese support have pushed Moscow to allow Beijing to develop extractive industries near the Russian capital, making protests against both the Kremlin and China more likely.

Chinese Plans for Moscow Region Threaten to Spark Protests Near Kremlin – Jamestown

Russia – USA

(Sergey Sukhankin – The Jamestown Foundation) The United States is closing its uranium market to Russia, a move that could have ripple effects on other Russian industries further disrupting the struggling economy. Russia is expected to seek alternatives to the US market by increasing uranium exports to “friendly” countries and working with uranium-producing countries in the Global South. The forfeiture of the US market is an unpleasant development for Russia, but Moscow has options and will likely manage to avoid the collapse of its uranium industry.

Washington Hits Russia’s Uranium Industry – Jamestown

Russian War In Ukraine

(Yuri Lapaiev – The Jamestown Foundation) The ban on Ukraine’s use of Western-supplied weapons to strike targets in Russia significantly disrupts the country’s defense capabilities. Preemptive strikes on Russian assembly areas and air bases would be easier and more cost-effective than countering troops and bombers along the contact line.
Ukraine has a proven track record of highly effective and precise strikes with Western weapons exclusively on Russian military targets and has gone to great lengths to limit civilian casualties.

Ukraine Forced to Fight With One Hand Tied Behind Back – Jamestown

(Pavel K. Baev – The Jamestown Foundation) The Kremlin is trying to impede any Western resolve in allowing long-distance Ukrainian strikes on military targets within Russia to avoid destabilizing energy infrastructure and disrupting the lives of everyday Russians. Moscow uses the fear of escalation and nuclear saber-rattling to inflame worries within Western populations of a possible widening of the conflict. Sustained Western solidarity with Ukraine will almost inevitably translate into a breakthrough, canceling all of Russia’s illegitimate territorial “acquisitions.”

Moscow Seeks to Aggravate Western Concerns About Long-Distance Ukrainian Strikes – Jamestown

South Korea – Japan

(Christopher B. Johnstone and Victor Cha – Center for Strategic & International Studies) Almost unnoticed in the Western press, on June 1, 2024, South Korean defense minister Shin Won-sik and Japanese defense minister Kihara Minoru reached an agreement on the margins of the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore to normalize bilateral defense ties, which have been essentially on ice since 2018. Despite the usual focus on U.S.-China relations at the Shangri-La Dialogue, and the meeting between U.S. secretary of defense Lloyd Austin and his Chinese counterpart, this announcement was easily the most significant outcome from the event.

South Korea and Japan Cement Bilateral Security Ties (


(East Asia Forum) In the lead-up to the US Presidential election in November, both Donald Trump and Joe Biden have turned to protectionist economic policies as part of their rhetoric of restoring American economic supremacy. These measures could complicate the US’ international relationships, obstruct the green transition and signal a fundamental shift in world economic affairs.

America’s leadership choice and its consequence for the global economic order | East Asia Forum

(Diana Roy – Council on Foreign Relations) Record numbers of migrants seeking to cross the southern U.S. border are challenging the Joe Biden administration’s attempts to restore asylum protections. Here’s how the asylum process works.

Seeking Protection: How the U.S. Asylum Process Works | Council on Foreign Relations (


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