James ONeill

US and Terrorist Groups in Desperate Rearguard Actions in Syria

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While the attention of the world has been focused on the increasingly strident rhetoric between the United States and North Korea, a rather different and potentially more dangerous series of moves has been playing out in Syria…

Australia and U.S. “Joined at the Hip”: Where’s the Benefit?

The Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has on two recent occasions referred to Australia being “joined at the hip” to the United States on its defence and national security policies. That phrasing invited some critical commentary…

North Korea and the UN Sanctions Merry Go Round

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On 11 September 2017 the UN Security Council unanimously passed Resolution 2375 imposing further sanctions on North Korea in response to its latest nuclear test. This was the latest and ninth such resolution since 2006. There…

Further Evidence As To Why America’s Word Cannot be Trusted

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Recent events confirm the long held view of many that adherence to international law is, for the Americans, at best an optional extra rather than being an essential component of conduct between States…

Trump and Afghanistan: A Hidden Agenda

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On Monday 21 August 2017 US President Trump made his long awaited statement on future US policy in Afghanistan. There was considerable speculation beforehand that as to whether Trump might announce a US withdrawal. The basis…

Germany’s Ostpolitik in the Modern Era

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When Willy Brandt became Chancellor of the German Federal Republic in 1969 he implemented a policy of rapprochement with the East, including not only the then German Democratic Republic, but all East European countries then under…

US Sanctions Symptomatic of a Failing Empire

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On 26 July 2017 the US Congress overwhelmingly approved a Bill providing for fresh sanctions against North Korea, Russia and Iran. The passage of this Bill , and its level of support in the US Congress, is instructive on a number of…

The Bhutan Standoff: More Opportunity than Threat

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In June of this year a new dispute between India and China arose when Indian troops moved into an area where the borders of Bhutan, Tibet and China meet and confronted Chinese workers building a road. The area concerned is known…

Lessons from Mosul: Double Standards, War Crimes and Lack of Accountability

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Last week the Iraqi government announced that Mosul has been ‘liberated ‘ from the control of ISIS. The major campaign for Mosul’s liberation began in October 2016 when the US led coalition massively increased both…

North Korea: Origins of the Present Crisis and a Possible Solution

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North Korea recently successfully tested an ICBM capable of reaching Alaska, possibly the northwestern United States, and northern Australia. This has sparkled immediate reactions, ranging from direct threats of unilateral…

The Situation in Syria Just Became More Dangerous

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The military situation in Syria took a significant step for the worse on 19 June 2017 when an American fighter jet shot down a Syrian fighter jet carrying out operations against ISIS. That was the latest in a series of foolhardy…

One Belt, One Road: Opportunities and Challenges for Australia

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“China”, Napoleon once remarked, “is like a sleeping lion. Let here sleep, for when she awakens she will shake the world.” In 2013 in a speech delivered in Astana, Kazakhstan, China’s President Xi Jinping outlined an ambitious…


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