COMPLESSITA’, SCENARI, RISCHIO
Mentre l’Ucraina brucia, il clima a livello planetario non è dei migliori. Il tema è la preoccupazione strategica per gli effetti non controllabili di una guerra alle porte dell’Europa che tutto è tranne che (solo) un confronto tra due Paesi. Sono in gioco, e lo abbiamo scritto con il condizionale, il nuovo volto del mondo e nuove riconfigurazioni dei rapporti di potere a livello internazionale. L’iper attivismo degli USA nel rinserrare le fila delle democrazie in giro per il mondo (anche conducendo giochi pericolosi, a esempio con Taiwan) si accompagna ai rapporti sempre più stretti (per ragioni d’interesse, certamente, che alcuni dicono tattiche e non strategiche, ma reali) tra Russia, Cina e India. L’Europa, intanto, si fa dire dalla Cina che non si ragiona con una civiltà (quella cinese) con il metro della “certezza lineare”. Il mondo continua ad armarsi (alleanze tra Italia e Turchia, movimenti tra Germania, USA e Israele) in una corsa competitiva verso la continua escalation (non stiamo parlando del dibattito “lunare” sul “due per cento”): non ci sfuggono le ragioni della sicurezza e della difesa ma non vediamo un pianeta in prospettiva sostenibile.
Noi, da questa parte del mondo, continuiamo a pensare, evidentemente sbagliando visto la realtà nella quale ci troviamo, che i fenomeni storici siano lineari e che esista una sostanziale separazione tra buoni e cattivi. Dovremmo domandarci, fuor di retorica: qual’è la volontà degli americani (al di là di quella espressa) ? E l’Europa, potrà avere un ruolo autonomo o si porrà (o sarà posta) a traino del potente alleato transatlantico ?
Dopo il “Giudizio storico”, seguono fonti aperte
La fase storica che stiamo vivendo, nella sua tragicità, è ricca d’interesse. Siamo chiamati a elaborare. almeno è ciò che sentiamo, un giudizio storico nella realtà in evoluzione. E non deve mancare il contributo di ciascuno, comunque la si pensi. Un approccio di fondo, che crediamo debba informare tale giudizio, è la de-dogmatizzazione e la relatività delle reciproche posizioni: riteniamo che i “sacerdoti laici” delle questioni strategiche abbiano fatto sufficienti danni da meritare di non essere ascoltati. Per questo privilegiamo il dubbio.
Intendiamo percorrere, in spirito di ricerca e consapevoli che siamo chiamati a scandagliare le tante posizioni e analisi che si sono rincorse, i decenni che ci separano dalla caduta del muro di Berlino e dalla implosione dell’Unione Sovietica. Non per rubare il mestiere agli storici, e neppure agli analisti strategici, il nostro contributo vuole essere quello d’intellettuali critici che guardano alle prospettive.
Massimo D’Alema (Italianieuropei, 6-2019) scrive: “Nel disordine internazionale di oggi (…), non emerge la prospettiva di un nuovo ordine. Esso ci appare più come la crisi di un sistema tradizionale, una crisi pericolosa e che può scivolare verso esiti che appaiono almeno in parte imprevedibili”.
Era il 2019 ma sembra passata un’era geologica. Eppure, sempre D’Alema (cit., 2019) guardava con preoccupazione ai conflitti irrisolti notando, tra gli altri, il “nodo irrisolto tra Russia e Ucraina”. Lo riprendiamo perché nulla è nuovo nel panorama che vediamo ogni giorno e perché tale nodo era giustamente inquadrato in un mondo di conflitti irrisolti, parte di un mosaico-mondo in ebollizione.
Per completare il quadro, non vi sono solo i conflitti politici, le crisi delle alleanze globali e regionali e le voglie di ritorni nazionalistici ma i grandi temi delle questioni economico-commerciali, ambientali, migratorie. Insomma, il mosaico-mondo è complesso e non può essere affrontato con il metro lineare e separante della Verità assoluta di Parte.
Ancora D’Alema (cit., 2019) nota: “Un tratto significativo del nostro tempo è che l’insieme di tali conflitti sembra non trovare più risposte all’interno delle istituzioni multilaterali”.
Senza nostalgie per l’ordine che si era formato dopo la fine della Seconda Guerra Mondiale, è giusto notare come in quegli anni vi fosse una idea di mondo, e della complessità dello stesso. Si può essere d’accordo o meno con le soluzioni allora adottate ma non si può negare il dato strategico della presenza di visioni politiche. E’ molto interessante un passaggio di D’Alema (cit., 2019) che spiega anche molte cose dell’oggi: “La grande ambizione è stata quella di espandere oltre i confini dello Stato-Nazione la dimensione della statualità e il dominio della legge”. Su questo, crediamo, occorrerebbe riflettere ed elaborare calandoci nelle prospettive che ricerchiamo.
Entra in gioco ciò che davvero è entrato in crisi, non da oggi: l’ordine mondiale liberale. Qui pensiamo che tale ordine rappresenti una grande conquista ma che, dopo l’89, esso hanno cambiato pelle e si sia trasformato in un qualcosa di molto diverso da ciò che, scrive D’Alema (cit., 2019), “ha resistito alla prova della guerra fredda”.
Vittorio Emanuele Parsi (Titanic. Naufragio o cambio di rotta per l’ordine liberale, Bologna 2022, p. 22) scrive: “(…) dobbiamo riconoscere il fatto che un ordine globale neoliberale è andato sostituendosi all’ordine internazionale liberale a partire dalla fine della Guerra fredda, destabilizzando l’equilibrio tra valori e interessi e tra democrazia e mercato”.
D’Alema (cit. 2019) evoca un passaggio che conferma la sostituzione, sottolineata da Parsi, dell’ordine internazionale liberale con un ordine globale neoliberale: “Quando nel 1999 incontrari, come presidente del Consiglio, papa Giovanni Paolo II rimasi colpito da ciò che mi disse all’inizio del nostro colloquio: “Ho combattuto tutta la vita contro il comunismo, ma ora che il comunismo è caduto mi domando chi difenderà i poveri”. Si trattava di un messaggio forte, persino drammatico, e di una preoccupazione che esprimeva una critica alla globalizzazione neo-liberista che si è rivelata assolutamente fondata.”.
Giovanni Paolo II era stato testimone diretto degli orrori di un tempo oppressivo e totalitario, li aveva vissuti nella sua carne e in quella del suo popolo. La sua visione era di dover superare quella fase terribile della storia dell’umanità, a qualunque costo. La lettura del suo amplissimo Magistero è assai interessante e crediamo che vada fatta criticamente, anche da queste pagine. Ciò che è accaduto il 9 novembre 1989, dunque, deve fare i conti con l’anelito della libertà ma anche con il realismo della politica.
Verrebbe da dire che la spinta dell’89 fu in parte avventata. Con grande rispetto per il respiro della libertà, il dibattito sulla opportunità di quella svolta fu acceso: posizioni diverse si confrontavano. Ciò che vediamo oggi, dopo molti anni, è che l’assenza di una visione complessiva e complessa della Storia del mosaico-mondo ha pesato come un macigno. Oggi, infatti, ci troviamo di fronte agli stessi nodi storici, chiaramente più complicati da districare, di allora. Nodi culturali, politici, economici, strategici: anche se siamo dentro un mondo completamente diverso da allora, per effetto – in particolare – della rivoluzione tecnologica, quei nodi restano sullo sfondo, in buona parte irrisolti. Compito di una ricerca critica è percorrerli.
- AROUND THE WORLD
- DEFENSE – MILITARY
- ON LIFE & CYBERSECURITY
- RUSSIA – UKRAINE (impact, reactions, consequences)
AROUND THE WORLD
- Technology and the future of jobs in Africa, April 1. By Louise Fox and Landry Signé, Brookings. Rapid technological advances are bringing major changes to workplaces around the world. In the U.S., this has been a source of both joy—for those able to work from home thanks to advanced video technology and the internet of things (IoT)—and sorrow for those who lost their job due to advanced robotics. Predicting the impact of new, Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) technology on employment opportunities around the world is now a growth industry. But how relevant is the technology, and to a large extent the experience of rich countries, to Africa’s current problems and choices? (read more)
- Canberra’s new plan against Chinese firm’s leasing of Darwin port self-destructive, By Global Times. Citing clues from the federal budget and a press release from Australian Infrastructure Minister Barnaby Joyce and then confirmation from Australian officials, several Australian media outlets on Thursday reported that the Australian government will announce a new port to be built in the strategically important city of Darwin, a move that some reports called a “major blow to China” and could “check Chinese control of key asset.”. (read more)
China – Afghanistan
- Chinese industrial park to be built in Kabul New City, March 31. By Global Times. Chinese firms and businessmen are eyeing more opportunities in Afghanistan, with an industrial park to be established in the Kabul New City, providing more jobs and helping train local Afghan workers, the Global Times has learned. (read more)
China . Bangladesh
- China-funded largest sewage plant in South Asia begins operations. April 1. By Global Times. The China-funded Dasherkandi Sewage Treatment Plant in Bangladesh, the largest sewage plant in South Asia, officially began operating on Friday. The project provides 1,000 local jobs and processes sewage for nearly 5 million people in Dhaka daily. (read more)
China – Europe
- China, EU share consensus, to jointly face global crisis as two major stabilizing forces: FM, April 2. By Wang Qi, Global Times. Chinese foreign ministry on Saturday hailed the importance of China-EU ties and space in further cooperation and coordination, following the China-EU leaders’ summit on Friday, which “provided political guidance and the strategic planning for China-EU relations.”. (read more)
- China, EU should seek further cooperation, strengthen policy coordination: Premier Li, April 2. By Global Times. China called for cooperation with the EU as Chinese Premier Li Keqiang stressed on Friday that the two sides should seek “new highlights” in their relationship and strengthen “policy coordination” in major areas. (read more)
- Xi calls on EU to form independent China policy, encourages bloc to take primary role for Ukraine resolution, April 2. By Zhang Hui and Liu Xin, Global Times. Chinese President Xi Jinping, during a video meeting with EU leaders on Friday, offered four suggestions on how China and the EU can cooperate to help with the current Ukraine crisis, especially on supporting the EU play a primary role in promoting communication among the EU, the US and NATO and finding solutions to build an effective and sustainable EU security framework. (read more)
- China tells EU it will pursue Ukraine peace in its own way, April 2. By Philip Blenkinsop and Yew Lun Tian, Reuters. China offered the European Union assurances on Friday that it would seek peace in Ukraine but said this would be on its own terms, deflecting pressure for a tougher stance towards Russia. Premier Li Keqiang told EU leaders that Beijing would push for peace in “its own way”, while President Xi Jinping said he hoped the EU would treat China “independently”, in a nod to Europe’s close ties with the United States. (read more)
China – Serbia
- China-Serbia Ironclad friendship sets a good example of China-CEEC cooperation amid world complex: Embassy, March 31. By Global Times. China and Serbia are “iron brothers” and comprehensive strategic partners. As one of the first countries to sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with China, Serbia is also among the very first to benefit from the infrastructure partnership. From railways to telecommunications, the achievements of China-Serbia cooperation have continued to be a benchmark for success, bringing significant benefits to the two peoples and bilateral trade. While the external situation is becoming increasingly complex, on the basis of solid political mutual trust and public opinion, the bilateral relationship is only becoming more solid and sustainable. In an exclusive interview with the Global Times reporter Yin Yeping (GT) , Tian Yishu, Chargé d’Affaires of China’s Embassy to Serbia addressed how the bilateral ties remain strong despite the complex global landscape. (read more)
China – Taiwan
- Chinese Embassy in the US refutes attempt to use Ukraine issue to provoke confrontation across the Taiwan Straits, April 2. By Global Times. The Taiwan question is China’s internal affair. It is not about “democracy versus authoritarianism,” but about secession versus anti-secession, the Chinese Embassy in the US stated in a solemn response to a Washington Post Op-ed titled “Ukraine has inspired Taiwan. We must stand against authoritarianism.” The embassy sternly refuted the attempt to use the Ukraine issue to foment splits between the two sides of the Taiwan Straits. (read more)
China – USA
- Opinion: US wants to shift trade policy toward China, but is still headed for a dead end, March 31. By Wang Yi, Global Times. In a testimony before the US House’s Ways and Means Committee, US Trade Representative Katherine Tai on Wednesday said that the US needs to “turn the page on the old playbook” when it comes to trade policy toward China, while suggesting moving further on a wrong approach of pressuring and decoupling. (read more)
- Hong Kong’s Carrie Lam says leadership election to go ahead as planned, April 2. By Reuters. Hong Kong’s leadership election will go ahead on May 8 as planned, city Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Saturday, rejecting media speculation it might be delayed for a second time due to a major COVID-19 outbreak. (read more)
- Neutrality With No Guarantees: The Evolution of Moldova’s Defense and Security Policies, April 1. Moldova has been discounting and underfunding its defense and security sectors for the past three decades, despite having over 10 percent of its territory under Russian control. Today, the foreign armed forces stationed on Moldovan territory against Chisinau’s will effectively surpass the strength of Moldova’s entire military. Objective reasons explain this state of affairs, including the country’s historical legacy as well as the poor strategic culture of its ruling elites. The historical legacy includes the deficient skills of statecraft among the Moldovan elites following the disintegration of the Soviet Union, their psychological reticence toward employing the military as a tool after the army’s defeat in Transnistria in 1992, the civilian leadership’s fear of military involvement in politics, as well as chronic economic scarcity. The weak strategic culture was driven by the lack of statecraft skills of Moldovan ruling elites as well as a routine over-emphasis on police as a more propitious tool of domestic coercion and rent-extraction by autocratic or corrupt rulers. (read more)
- Tight security in Sri Lanka’s capital as shops open after state of emergency order, April 2. By Uditha Jayasinghe and Dinuka Liyanawatte, Reuters. Shops opened in Sri Lanka’s capital city Colombo amid tight security on Saturday – the first day after a state of emergency was declared to tackle growing unrest amid an unprecedented economic crisis. (read more)
- Thailand, southern insurgent group to halt violence during Ramadan, April 2. By Reuters. The Thai government on Saturday hailed “significant progress” in the latest talks with the main group fighting an insurgency in Thailand’s Muslim deep south after the sides agreed to stop violence during the upcoming holy month of Ramadan. (read more)
- The State of U.S. Strategic Stockpiles, April 1. By Anshu Siripurapu, CFR. President Joe Biden has tapped the nation’s emergency oil reserves several times over the past year. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve is just one of the stockpiles that the United States maintains for economic and strategic purposes. (read more)
- U.S. cancels ICBM test due to Russia nuclear tensions, April 2. By Phil Stewart and Idrees Ali, Reuters. The U.S. military has canceled a test of its Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile that it had initially aimed only to delay in a bid to lower nuclear tensions with Russia during the war in Ukraine, the Air Force told Reuters on Friday. read more)
USA – Taiwan
- U.S. discusses ‘opportunities’ for Taiwan to participate at WHO meeting, April 2. By Reuters. U.S. and Taiwanese officials have held talks on expanding Taiwan’s international participation including “opportunities” for the island to attend a major World Health Organization meeting next month. (read more)
DEFENSE – MILITARY
- Air Force software factory looks to unleash ‘chaos’ on civilian IT shops, April 1. By Lauren C. Williams, Nextgov. The Air Force’s Kessel Run software factory wants to share its recipes for success with the whole federal government when it comes to engineering and security best practices. “We’re talking to other software factories and part of our initiative is to release all these templates and playbooks that not just [Defense Department] entities can use, right, from a software factory perspective or just a program office perspective, but any agency can just grab them off our site and say, hey, this is how Kessel Run does chaos engineering, this is how we do performance engineering,” said Omar Marrero, Kessel Run’s deputy test chief and the chaos and performance tech lead. (read more)
- Inflation Is the New Sequestration, April 1. By Mackenzie Eaglen, Dustin Walker, Defense One. As the Pentagon asks Congress for $30 billion more for fiscal year 2023 over enacted appropriations for this year, inflation is at the center of a defense-spending battle brewing on Capitol Hill. It’s injecting uncertainty and risk in the Pentagon’s budgeting and planning. And it’s dividing lawmakers on the size of the defense budget just as global threats are on the rise. (read more)
- Germany looks to buy Israeli or U.S. missile defence system, April 2. By Reuters. Berlin is considering buying a missile defence system from Israel or the United States to defend against threats including Russian Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad, German weekly Welt am Sonntag reported on Saturday. (read more)
- Marines’ 2023 wish list includes funding a ship the Navy plans to cancel, April 1. By At the top of the U.S. Marine Corps’ 2023 spending wish list is funding for an amphibious warship the U.S. Navy doesn’t plan to buy. The Navy announced in its March 28 fiscal 2023 budget request rollout that it would buy one last amphibious transport dock, LPD-32, and then end the production line. (read more)
- US Navy wants long-range missiles, more maintenance money in wish list, April 1. By Megan Eckstein, Defense News. The U.S. Navy would not buy more ships if it were given more money in fiscal 2023. The Navy often uses its so-called unfunded priorities list sent to Congress to ask for another destroyer or connector vessel. But the service is standing firm in its belief that it doesn’t want a fleet any larger than what it can afford to keep ready — having enough sailors, funding for training, dollars and shipyard capacity for maintenance and modernization work, munitions to fill missile launchers, spares to fill stock rooms, and more. (read more)
- Air Force seeks more than $5B to shore up outdated infrastructure, April 1. By Rachel S. Cohen, Defense One. The Air Force is seeking $5.3 billion in fiscal 2023 to continue revamping its outdated facilities across the globe, nearly half of which comes in the form of major construction projects. “These actions undertake urgently needed actions to improve the defense ecosystem and build resilient facilities and infrastructure,” the service said in its latest budget request, released on Monday. (read more)
- US Army picks L3Harris and Thales for radio modernization, April 1. By Colin Demarest, Defense News. The U.S. Army recently selected two companies to furnish voice and data radios as part of a broader effort to move away from aging assets and better secure military networks and communications. L3Harris Technologies and Thales Defense and Security were selected for the potential $6.1 billion combat net radio contract March 25. (read more)
- Turkey and Italy hint at return to SAMP/T air defense efforts, April 1. By Tayfun Ozberk, Defense News. Statements by the leaders of Turkey and Italy last week raised the possibility of the former procuring the SAMP/T air defense system — an effort that has been frozen for some time now. “We have decided to continue our efforts to revive the triple steps we took as Turkey-France-Italy. I hope we will start this new process vigorously after the elections [in France],” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan told reporters on a flight back from Brussels. France will hold a presidential election in April. (read more)
- Raytheon wins SPY-6 radar contract worth up to $3.2 billion, April 1. By Megan Eckstein, Defense News. The U.S. Navy has awarded Raytheon Technologies a contract worth up to $3.16 billion to provide radars for as many as 31 ships over the next five years. The award covers the family of SPY-6 radars, which includes the large V1 Air and Missile Defense Radar that will be installed on new Flight III Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, as well as smaller and rotating variants that will go on aircraft carriers, amphibious ships, frigates and older destroyers. (read more)
ON LIFE & CYBERSECURITY
- Trend Micro fixed high severity flaw in Apex Central product console, April 2. By Pierluigi Paganini, Security Affairs. Cybersecurity firm Trend Micro has addressed a high severity security flaw, tracked as CVE-2022-26871, in the Apex Central product management console. The CVE-2022-26871 vulnerability is an arbitrary file upload issue, its exploitation could lead to remote code execution. (read more)
- AcidRain, a wiper that crippled routers and modems in Europe, April 1. By Pierluigi Paganini, Security Affairs. Security researchers at SentinelLabs have spotted a previously undetected destructive wiper, tracked as AcidRain, that hit routers and modems and that was suspected to be linked to the Viasat KA-SAT attack that took place on February 24th, 2022. Pierluigi Paganini, Security Affairs. (read more)
- CISA adds Sophos firewall bug to Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog, April 1. Pierluigi Paganini, Security Affairs. The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) added the recently disclosed CVE-2022-1040 flaw in the Sophos firewall, along with seven other issues, to its Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog. (read more)
- Lawmakers Move to ‘Crack Down’ on Dark Web-Based Opioid Trafficking, April 1. By Brandi Vincent, Nextgov. Reps. Chris Pappas, D-N.H., and Tony Gonzales, R-Texas, introduced legislation on Wednesday that’s aimed at quashing drug dealers’ efforts to traffic opioids and other illegal substances on the dark web, or what are essentially hidden websites accessible solely via a specialized internet browser. “We’re seeing the devastating and deadly results of the opioid crisis in both cities and rural areas across the country, fueled in large part by the dark web,” Gonzales said. “These illegal marketplaces are a hub and a safe haven for some of society’s most dangerous criminals, and as these bad actors get more advanced, we need to ensure our law enforcement [has] the proper tools to crack down on their efforts.”. (read more)
- IRS Awards $70 Million Contract For Digital Modernization, April 1. By Alexandra Kelley, Nextgov. The Internal Revenue Service announced a new contract focused on implementing machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies into their data analytics operations. Awarded a Blanket Purchase Agreement spanning one base year, Brillient Corporation will instill more automation technology into the IRS’s systems. The technology, called Robotic Process Automation, will incorporate scalable automated technology into the agency’s information management operations. (read more)
- Public Health Agencies Seek More Data Interoperability, April 1. By Alexandra Kelley, Nextgov. Data integration is a top priority for the National Institutes of Health’s modernization efforts, with an emphasis on interoperability. Susan Gregurick, the associate director for Data Science and Director of the Office of Data Science Strategy at the NIH, discussed her office’s initiatives on creating a solid infrastructure to share public health data. (read more)
RUSSIA – UKRAINE (impact, reactions, consequences)
- Anonymous targets oligarchs’ Russian businesses, April 1. By Pierluigi Paganini, Security Affairs. Anonymous continues to target Russian firms owned by oligarchs, yesterday the collective announced the hack of the Thozis Corp, while today the group claimed the hack of Marathon Group. (read more)
- The Three-Pronged Ukrainian Issue for China, April 2. By Francesco Sisci, Settimana News. China is experiencing three different forces that are shaking up its world. One is the war in Ukraine and the spin of the propaganda about it. The second is its ties with Europe, also strained because of the war. The third is the wild card of North Korea incensing the situation in East Asia. (read more)
- Russia’s Cyber War: What’s Next and What the European Union Should Do, March 30. By and , CFR. The EU has made long-term changes which will improve it’s cybersecurity. However, the bloc needs to make a series of short-term changes to guard against potential Russian cyberattacks. (read more)
- Russian Disinformation: All Bot But No Bite?, April 1. By Patience Wait, Nextgov. Sometimes the absence of something is telling, like the dog that didn’t bark in the night. There has been a noticeable shift in misinformation and disinformation campaigns in U.S. social media ever since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24. “The Russians are [responsible for] maybe a third of the fake information on COVID and other things,” said James Andrew Lewis, senior vice president and director of the Technology and Public Policy Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He added that “the Russians are probably having a little bit harder time” keeping their online propaganda campaigns going. (read more)
- State Department Official: Belarus President Vulnerable Due to Putin’s War, April 1. By Patrick Tucker, Defense One. Analysts put low odds on a popular uprising forcing Russian President Vladimir Putin from power. But his closest ally in the current war against Ukraine is a lot more vulnerable, a senior State Department official told Defense One. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko faces a completely different and even more challenging political reality because of his support of Putin’s war, experts say. (read more)
- Pentagon announces $300M in aerial systems, military weapons for Ukraine. April 1. By Lexi Lonas, The Hill. The Department of Defense announced on Friday the U.S. will provide Ukraine with $300 million of additional security assistance to Ukraine. (read more)
- US to assist allies moving Soviet tanks to Ukraine: report, April 1. By Lexi Lonas, The Hill. The U.S. will help allies move Soviet-made tanks to Ukraine in an effort to assist the country in protecting its Donbas region amid the Russian invasion, The New York Times reported Friday. (read more)
- Harris says Biden administration ‘not into regime change’, April 1. By Lexi Lonas, The Hill. Vice President Harris said that the Biden administration was not looking for a regime change in Russia after President Biden’s remarks about Russian President Vladimir Putin during a speech he made last week in Warsaw, Poland. (The Hill)
- Russian missiles strike several Ukrainian cities – local officials, April 2. By Reuters. Russian missiles hit two cities in central Ukraine early on Saturday, damaging infrastructure and residential buildings, the head of the Poltava region said. (read more)
- Turkish drones won’t give Ukraine the edge it needs. April 1. By In addition to the ground invasion and airstrikes by Russia that are straining both the Ukrainian and Russian militaries in and around Kyiv, there is another layer of combat occurring in the air, an unmanned form of combat that is proving to be lethal. Drones have become a tool of both the invaders and the resistance in Ukraine, for both intelligence collection and attacks. In the run up to the invasion, Ukraine allegedly sent hand-launched reconnaissance UAVs into Belarus to gather information on the preparations and movements of Russian troops staged there. While this is better than no information at all, its usefulness was limited because reconnaissance alone could not analyze the patterns of troop movements to create an understanding of how Russia’s plans were developing. (read more)
- Russia headed for recession, closed economy despite rouble rebound, U.S. says, April 2. By David Lawder and Andrea Shalal, Reuters. Punishing sanctions imposed by the United States and its allies on Moscow for invading Ukraine are pushing Russia into recession and starting to turn it back into a closed economy, a senior U.S. Treasury official said on Friday. The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told reporters that the Treasury sees Russia as struggling with steep inflation, diminished exports and shortages despite a recovery of its rouble against the dollar. The official dismissed the rebound as driven by stringent capital controls and foreign exchange curbs, not market forces. (read more)
- U.S. will work with allies to transfer Soviet-made tanks to Ukraine -NY Times, April 2. By Reuters. The United States will work with allies to transfer Soviet-made tanks to Ukraine to bolster its defenses in the Donbas region, the New York Times reported on Friday, citing a U.S. official. (read more)
- China says not deliberately circumventing sanctions on Russia, April 2. By Yew Lun Tian, Reuters. China is not deliberately circumventing sanctions on Russia, a senior Chinese diplomat said on Saturday, a day after the European Union warned Beijing against allowing Moscow to work around measures imposed after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Wang Lutong, director-general of European affairs at China’s foreign ministry, told reporters that China is contributing to the global economy by conducting normal trade with Russia. (read more)
- U.S. to provide additional $300 mln in security assistance to Ukraine, April 2. By Reuters. (read more)
- Red Cross heads again for Mariupol as Russia shifts Ukraine focus, April 2. By James Mackenzie, Reuters. A Red Cross convoy travelling to the Ukrainian city of Mariupol will make another attempt to evacuate civilians from the besieged port on Saturday as Russian forces looked to be regrouping for new attacks in the southeast. read more)