T
he Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan could soon find himself with a raft of sweeping powers as his party pushes for a far-reaching law with limited checks and balances that would transform the current parliamentary system of Turkey into a presidential one. Last January 21, a number of constitutional amendments seeking to expand the powers of Turkey’s president won the support of 339 deputies in a parliament composed of 550 members.

Published in Middle East

F
ifty percent of all worldwide peace agreements fail within five years of being signed , the rate of relapse worsening, year in, year out, with every passing decade since the 1960s . It seems we have all along been signing ‘agreements without peace’, failing to see that peace is a process and not a deal.

Published in Europe

T
urkey has been suffering from terrorism for a long time, losing over 40,000 people in the last 40 years. When the Syrian uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad began in 2011, Turkey was enjoying a peaceful era with the least causalities lost to terrorism in its recent history. However, this less-violent period quickly started to deteriorate due to new regional conflicts and Turkey’s flawed domestic and international policies.

Published in Intelligence

T
he Syrian civil war has been raging for close to six years, fueled by a tangled web of alliances, the regional ambitions of foreign powers, and an increasingly bitter power struggle between various armed rebel and Islamist groups. The conflict has claimed an estimated 400,000 lives in that time, but there are signs that the fighting may be tenuously coming to an end due—in part—to an unlikely détente between Turkey and Russia.

Published in Russia

X
injiang’s demographic and anthropic complexion is more complex than we tend to currently believe: according to China's 2000 census-taking, 40% of the population of East Turkestan-Xinjiang is Han Chinese, while the remaining 60% is Uyghur, Kazakh, Kyrgyz or Oirat.

Published in East Asia

T
here is an awful lot of emotional kvetching around the recent Trump executive order about banning entry to people from seven specific countries to the United States. Word of warning: this piece is not going to be diving into the symbolic wrist-cutting people on the left are doing or the hyper-defensive quasi-arrogant self-justification being pushed back from those on the right. If the initial period of the Trump presidency has shown us anything, it is that it is going to be full of great gusts of emotional wind from both sides of the spectrum.

Published in Iconoclast

I
f indeed “War is a mere continuation of policy with other means” [1] the metaphoric kill switches that have made their way into strategic weapons by arms manufacturers give Clausewitz's nearly two-hundred-year-old observation new meaning. The ability of states that manufacture complex strategic networked weapons systems to simply turn off or at least partially disable such systems, on demand, is not really new.

Published in Defense

T
urkey has been ruled by a declared State of Emergency since the July 2016 coup attempt, allowing President Erdogan to consolidate additional powers and target not just those responsible for the coup, but allegedly also those who hold or express opposing political views.

Published in Middle East
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