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Cyber Security, Digital Transition, Technology Geopolitics & Worlds In-Defense In-Security Pensiero Strategico

The Global Eye – february 18, 2022 pm

AFGHANISTAN

Analysts attribute the fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August 2021 to various factors. These include geopolitical shifts, and the Taliban’s tactics of warfare. However, fewer attempts have been made to understand the Taliban’s victory through internal mobilisation. This brief attempts to fill the gap, and examines the role of identity, grievance, and greed in the Taliban’s mobilisation and its contribution to a successful insurgency. It outlines the implications of these mobilisation tactics for the Taliban government and the international community. Observer Research Foundation, Aditya Gowdara Shivamurthy: Mobilising to a Victorious Insurgency: Locating Identity, Grievance, and Greed in the Taliban’s Strategy

AFRICAN UNION – ISRAEL

In the first week of February, the annual summit of the African Union (AU) took place in Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, the headquarters of the African Union. The principal objective of the meeting was to evaluate AU’s achievements over the past one year. There were several key issues in the agenda of the meeting including the recent surge of military coups and the ways to recover from the COVID pandemic. However, the whole meeting got disrupted because of disputes among its Member States over Israel’s observer status in the African Union. Vivekananda International Foundation, Samir Bhattacharya: Israel’s Africa Conundrum: Bilateral Relations, Multilateral Opposition

CHINA – RUSSIA

Despite the optics of a Sino-Russian presidential summit at a time of heightened tensions with the West, the trust upon which their bilateral relationship is built remains shaky. RUSI, Veerle Nouwens, Emily Ferris: The Beijing–Moscow Partnership: Natural or by Necessity?

CITIES

An effort now underway to establish a car-free zone bigger than Manhattan in central Berlin, a relatively dense location where 15% of the surface area is used for road traffic, just might succeed. But what about a place like Los Angeles County, a sprawling megalopolis where a nearly equal percentage of surface area is used just for parking – on top of the hundreds of square kilometers occupied by essential roads and clogged freeways? World Economic Forum, John Letzing: Are cars an urban design flaw? Cities advance car-free zones

CYBER SECURITY

L’esposizione agli attacchi informatici è aumentata a livello globale, accelerata dalla pandemia che ha imposto la diffusione del telelavoro e di ecosistemi aziendali digitalizzati. Secondo l’Acronis Cyber Readiness Report 2021, le aziende italiane sono tra quelle che affrontano più frequentemente attacchi di phishing. Come riportato dal 69% dei manager IT, il 25% delle aziende in Italia subisce un cyberattacco almeno una volta alla settimana, il 12% una volta al giorno e il 33% una volta al mese. Impresacity, Denis Valter Cassinerio: Cyber security: difendersi da minacce a tutto campo

EUROPE

Europe’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals have limited available capacity to absorb extra supply from the United States or other major producers in the event of Russian gas disruption if it invades Ukraine. Euractiv: Brimming European LNG terminals have limited space for more gas

On Wednesday (16 February), lawmakers approved the Parliament’s response to the European Commission’s offshore renewable energy strategy. Their report called for the quick deployment of offshore renewable energy and time limits for authorities approving permits. “Offshore wind is the key to reaching our climate objectives. If we are to have a chance to live up to our climate targets, we need more renewable energy, much more in fact,” said the lead lawmaker for the topic, Morten Petersen. Euractiv, Kira Taylor: European Parliament demands quicker deployment of offshore renewable energy

EUROPE – AFRICA

The EU “is there” for African farmers and food producers with development support should the increased European green agriculture standards create trade barriers, according to a Commission official. Euractiv, Gerardo Fortuna: Commission: EU committed to guiding Africa in raising sustainable food standards

Renewable hydrogen is one of the central discussion topics at the ongoing European Union-African Union summit. The EU has made its ambitions to import hydrogen from the African continent clear: in its 2020 Hydrogen Strategy, the European Commission foresees 40 GW of renewable hydrogen electrolysers in the EU neighbourhood, a large proportion of which are expected to be in North Africa, by 2030. Euractiv, Eleonora Moro: A hydrogen strategy for a balanced EU-Africa partnership

FRANCE – MALI

In February 2013, thousands lined up along the main road in the historic Malian city of Timbuktu to give a heroic welcome to France’s President Francois Hollande. He was visiting the city after French forces had pushed back armed groups that had captured swaths of Mali and were marching towards the capital, Bamako. Al Jazeera, Mucahid Durmaz: Analysis: Did the French mission in Mali fail?

GREECE

Greece’s ruling centre-right New Democracy party (European People’s Party) has expelled EU lawmaker Giorgios Kyrtsos from its ranks because of his criticism against the government over media freedom and the handling of the pandemic. Euractiv, Sarantis Michalopoulos: Ruling New Democracy expels MEP critical of media freedom in Greece

HONG KONG

Hong Kong on Friday postponed an election for a new leader until May to battle a raging COVID outbreak, but unlike previous years, there’s still no front-runner for the job, adding to uncertainty about the city’s future as Beijing imposes its rule. The former British colony returned to China in 1997, since when there have been four chief executives, all of whom struggled to balance the democratic aspirations of some residents with the vision of China’s Communist Party leaders. Reuters, James Pomfret: Hong Kong’s future unclear as leadership election, lacking front-runner, is delayed by COVID

IRAN

A leaked audio recording in which two former senior officials of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) discuss corruption that helps fund the powerful force and its secretive military operations abroad has shed light on infighting and graft that extends to the hierarchy of the country’s clerical regime. RFE RL, Golnaz Esfandiari: Radio Farda Exposé On IRGC Corruption, Infighting Raises Ire Of Iranian Authorities

NIGER

President Mohamed Bazoum says Niger has accepted that French and European special forces will be deployed into its territory from Mali to boost security near the border with its neighbouring country. Al Jazeera: After Mali exit, Niger accepts foreign forces to secure border

NIGERIA

In the 22 years since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999, academics in its public universities have gone on strike a record 15 times. The 16th one, a one-month warning strike declared on February 14 to press for increased wages, comes barely two years after a nine-month industrial action. Al Jazeera, Ope Adetayo: Nigeria is locked in an endless tug of war with its academics

RUSSIA – UKRAINE – SECURITY

Russia’s Defense Ministry has announced new strategic military maneuvers for February 19, to be overseen by President Vladimir Putin, amid concerns that the Kremlin is possibly planning an invasion of Ukraine. RFE RL: Russia Announces New Drills Involving ‘Strategic Forces’ Amid Ukraine Crisis

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov voiced alarm on Friday over a sharp increase in shelling in eastern Ukraine and accused the OSCE special monitoring mission of glossing over what he said were Ukrainian violations of the peace process. Reuters: Russia voices alarm over sharp increase of Donbass shelling

Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian rebels reported increased shelling in eastern Ukraine for a second straight day on Friday, an escalation that Washington and other Western allies say could form part of a Russian pretext to invade. A diplomatic source with years of direct experience of the conflict described the shelling over the past two days as the most intense along the frontline in eastern Ukraine since major combat there ended with a 2015 ceasefire. Reuters,  and : East Ukraine sees its worst shelling in years

Ukraine said on February 18 that it has recorded a sudden surge in cease-fire violations by Russia-backed separatists in the east as the United States warned that Moscow is preparing provocations to justify an invasion of its neighbor in the coming days. RFE RL: Ukraine Reports Spike In Cease-Fire Violations As U.S. Says Russia On ‘Path To War’ (rferl.org)

Su-24 crews belonging to the Black Sea Fleet’s naval aviation conducted drills on avoiding a potential enemy’s strike and relocating to alternate airfields, according to a statement by the Black Sea Fleet press service on Friday. Black Sea Fleet’s naval aviation redeploys Su-24s from Crimea to other regions

France believes that there are conditions for continuing negotiations on the crisis around Ukraine, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in an interview with the LCI TV channel on Friday. TASS: Top French diplomat sees conditions for talks on Ukrainian crisis

The EU and NATO are not preparing for war, the differences of opinion with Russia on the situation around Ukraine can be resolved through dialogue, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares said in an interview with the Onda Cero radio station on Friday. TASS: EU, NATO not getting ready for war, Spanish top diplomat says

The United States needs to take the concerns that Russia and other countries have over the complicated situation in Ukraine into consideration, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at a briefing on Friday. TASS: US should take Russia’s concerns over Ukraine into account, Chinese diplomat insists

Kiev’s crimes during the 2014 coup d’etat, the burning of the Trade Union House in Odessa, and the punitive operations in Donbass are being hushed up by Washington and Brussels, State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said on Friday. TASS: State Duma speaker says Kiev’s genocidal crimes swept under the rug by US, EU

SECURITY FORCE ASSISTANCE MISSIONS

With corruption playing a significant role in the outcome of recent security force assistance missions, a different approach to tackling the problem is needed. RUSI, Antonio Giustozzi: The Enemy Within: The Impact of Corruption on Security Force Assistance

SPAIN – PORTUGAL

As Spain and Portugal are hit by the worst drought in 15 years, MEPs have voiced worries over the situation. EU Equality Commissioner Helena Dalli raised hopes that support could come from funds in the EU’s farming subsidies programme. Euractiv, Julia Dahm: MEPs, Commission share concerns over ‘severe’ Iberian drought

TECHNOLOGY 

Accenture spinge su un approccio Thread First Thinking esaltando il modello digital thread. Ma cosa è il digital thread e che vantaggi porta alle aziende del manufacturing? Impresacity, Valerio Mariani: Cosa è il digital thread e perché sostituirà il digital twin

In Olanda il primo data center con alimentazione di backup a idrogeno “verde”: un maggiore costo a breve termine in nome della neutralità climatica. Impresacity: L’idrogeno verde entra nei data center

UK

The UK’s new Defence Space Strategy should be viewed primarily as a statement of aspiration, with decisions on capabilities and how to acquire them still to be made. RUSI, Trevor Taylor: The Defence Space Strategy: Undefined Commitments So Far

This Whitehall Report identifies what UK interests demand from the British Army. RUSI, Jack Watling: The Utility of Land Power to the British State

USA – INDO PACIFIC

Early this month, the United States President, Joe Biden, outlined his Indo-Pacific strategy amidst the geopolitical shifts taking place in the region. This greatly represented the region’s importance to US security and prosperity. While the document depicts a good grasp of the complexities, challenges, and opportunities involved in the region, and how the US seeks to safeguard its interests while maintaining the rules-based order, it is interesting to note that both China and India figure prominently in the document. Moreover, with the two Asian powerhouses having diverging views towards the established order, it will not only be important to underscore how the Biden administration seeks to incorporate them into the equation, but also to assess the degree of continuity and change in comparison to the Trump administration’s strategy, which was declassified in the waning days of his presidency. Furthermore, given the complex geopolitical issues unfolding in Eastern Europe, can (or should) the US operationalise such a strategy? Observer Research Foundation, Don McLain Gill: Mapping China, India, and Russia in President Biden’s Indo-Pacific Strategy

USA – THAILAND

The text of the following statement was released by the Governments of the United States of America and Thailand on the occasion of the 2nd United States-Thailand Energy Policy Dialogue. US Department of State: Joint Statement on the 2nd United States-Thailand Energy Policy Dialogue