Israel and the resolution 2334: At last isolated?

The resolution 2334, stating that Israel′s settlement activity constitutes a « flagrant violation » of international law and has « no legal validity » [1] came as a shock and that, for various reasons: in Israel, it was interpreted as the Obama administration’s last betrayal, after months and months of tensions and petty rivalries, though Obama’s relative audacity consisted in not vetoing a resolution which only officialise a neutral Continue reading “Israel and the resolution 2334: At last isolated?”

Why Obama’s final plan for the Middle East must be prevented at all costs

The recent upheaval regarding America’s decision to abstain from using its veto power to protect Israel from a UN security council resolution was hard to miss. Israel was not just surprised, they felt humiliated by their traditional ally. President-Elect Donald Trump and Israeli officials had convinced Egypt, the original initiator of the resolution, to delay the voting process but current President Barack Obama unexpectedly made sure the vote would happen and even passed. This article will argue why that can be a horrible mistake. Continue reading “Why Obama’s final plan for the Middle East must be prevented at all costs”

Civil disobedience in Sudan: Another Arab Spring?

“Peaceful” civil disobedience is always linked in the minds with Mahatama Ghandi’s march to the sea in protest of the British monopoly on salt, his most courageous act of civil disobedience against the famous British rule in India in 1930. However, this time the news come from Africa, specifically in Sudan where Sudanese  started on Sunday 27th of November 2016 a five-day civil disobedience with varying proportions of response among the residents of the country.

Continue reading “Civil disobedience in Sudan: Another Arab Spring?”

Trump’s presidency and its implications for the European Union’s foreign policy

In the past days we are coming to terms with the fact that in the next 4 years we will have to deal with the Trump administration leading the most powerful country in the world, “the leader of the free world” would be a controversial person like Donald Trump. The two articles on this blog written by Luís[1] and Tjeerd[2] highlighted the failure of the Democratic Party and the Establishment to present a credible alternative or deliberately undermining one (yes, I am talking about Bernie). But after going through the five stages of grief with denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance it is time to look into the future and deal with the situation as it is. Some would even say there is a silver lining Continue reading “Trump’s presidency and its implications for the European Union’s foreign policy”

Where did it go wrong for Clinton?

Donald Trump will be the 45th President of the United States. A few days ago when saying this, people would have declared you mad. Hillary Clinton, the nominee for the Democratic party, was seen as favorite to succeed President Barack Obama. Trump was a clown, a racist, even a woman hater. The many scandals would prevent him from obtaining America’s highest public position. How different did it turn out to be.

First let me help some readers to get rid of their mourning and sadness. Hillary Clinton was never the perfect candidate. Not just because of the mail-affair or for whatever Bill Clinton did wrong. But because she was chosen for her name, not for her ideas. Sure, she was turned into the natural successor of Obama and a champion for women’s rights. But she never came with a great plan to back that image. When looking at her policy plans it was really hard to say what Clinton’s presidency would have actually stand for. Continue reading “Where did it go wrong for Clinton?”

The rage against the Establishment

November the 9th, 6:30 Am

I woke up quite early to hit the gym, I started my daily routine packing up things, had a quick breakfast trying to avoid the inevitable, checking who had won the elections or was predicted to win at that time. It was with no surprise that I saw Trump with 244 electoral votes against 215 from Hillary.

I must admit I wasn’t shocked at all, the night before I went to bed with the feeling the next morning I would wake up with Trump being the winner and that was what happened.

How did a guy accused of sexual assault, who filed for bankruptcy more than once, who proposed to build a wall, bring back waterboarding and torture[i], ban Muslims coming in, with no political experience and all his sexist, homophobic and racist interventions manage to be seen as the most fit for the job at the oval office? Continue reading “The rage against the Establishment”

The decline of the Arabian Peninsula. Time for a party?

The Middle East is going up in flames but the Arabian Peninsula has for years been the prosperous exception. This is now changing. The countries of the GCC are experiencing decreasing demand for oil which is putting pressure on prices worldwide. Oil economies that stop selling oil will at some moment collapse. Its a scenario that the international community has to prepare for. The question that remains is if we should fear this development, or celebrate it.

There are many reasons why the demand for oil is decreasing. The main one is the lower-than-expected growth of industrialized economies. Especially the disappointing growth in Asia has negatively impacted the demand for oil and gas. But also other factors have played a role. The United States for example, although recovering from a financial crisis, has increased domestic oil production to become more self-supporting. The oil producing countries of the GCC however, had prepared for better times. They are now stuck with a surplus in oil and in no strategical position to increase their prices. Continue reading “The decline of the Arabian Peninsula. Time for a party?”

An Alternative for Berlin?

14408147_10154643972719558_1117834378_oGiven the success of the rightwing populist party AfD, the outcome of the regional elections in Berlin last Sunday can hardly be considered a victory for the SPD, which remained the strongest force. If the political parties in Germany do not come up with true alternatives to revive the political debate, the influence of the AfD will continue growing.

What has happened to Berlin? What has happened to the European capital of ‘multi-kulti’, world-openness and progressive lifestyle? The rightwing populist party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) has achieved 14,2% of vote at the regional elections and will have 25 seats in the regional parliament. The Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands (SPD) has 38 seats with 24,8% of vote. Continue reading “An Alternative for Berlin?”

Brazil’s Glorious Rise and the Abrupt Fall of its Left

OPIX_Brazil_Political_Crisis.JPGThe world is still recovering from the Olympics in Rio. We have seen new world records being set. We have said goodbye to iconic sports figures such as Michael Phelps. The fastest man alive blew our minds away and the first Simone Biles amazed us. On the negative side, the LochteGate scandal caught us all by surprise when one of the world’s top swimmers tried to take advantage of Rio’s best known weaknesses: violence and crime. Nevertheless, the games were overall a success and the world was impressed. Amidst many concerns, Brazil pulled
it off and set a milestone as the first Latin American and the first lusophone nation to host such an event. As the city takes a break from the spotlight, the country is hosting another Continue reading “Brazil’s Glorious Rise and the Abrupt Fall of its Left”

Erdoğan’s Only Asset Is Our Do-Nothingness (or) How to Make a Coup – for Dummies!

Erdoğan’s decision to use that coup to legitimize his long-lasting desire to 13816858_1018024594983056_1808953605_ncontrol every bits of the Turkish society is the penultimate proof of his illegitimacy as a European Union’s ally or partner. To counterbalance his growing strength and influence, the European leaders must for once show some initiative: it is time for the Union to strike hard and fast in order to isolate him on the international scene. Blood, if not, will definitely have blood. Continue reading “Erdoğan’s Only Asset Is Our Do-Nothingness (or) How to Make a Coup – for Dummies!”