Geopolitics / ISIS – ISIS: What the US Doesn’t Understand

New York Review of Books – Ahmed Rashid writes that the crisis ISIS has created for the West and the Arab world cannot be effectively addressed until there is a broader understanding of what ISIS wants. The first thing we need to recognize is that ISIS is not waging a war against the West…ISIS wants to destroy the near enemy, the Arab regimes, first. This is above all a war within Islam: a conflict of Sunni against Shia, but also a war by Sunni extremists against more moderate Muslims—between those who think the Muslim world should be dominated by a single strand of Wahhabism and its extremist offshoot Salafism and those who support a pluralistic vision of Muslim society. The leaders of ISIS seek to eliminate all Muslim and non-Muslim minorities from the Middle East—not only erasing the old borders and states imposed by Western powers, but changing the entire ethnic, tribal, and religious composition of the region.

Geopolitics / North East Asia – Australia May Not Be Prepared for North-East Asia Conflicts

Epoch Times – Desmond Ball has spent over a quarter of a century as a special professor at the Australian National University’s Strategic and Defence Studies Centre. For Professor Ball, the recent Australian deployment of air power and military personnel to northern Iraq represents a familiar scenario – the Middle East has once again become a distraction from what is needed to defend Australian shores.

Geopolitics – Old world order is out

Geopolitics – Old world order is out – Robert D. Kaplan writes that there has been something both conclusive and convulsive — and yet sustaining — about the crisis in Ukraine that has caused people to believe we have entered a new chapter in international relations. As other commentators have noted, the old order has collapsed. By that they mean the period erstwhile labeled the post-Cold War.

Geopolitics – The Gift of American Power

Real Clear World – Robert D. Kaplan states that great powers are rarely appreciated in their own time, for the benevolent order they spread goes unacknowledged by those who benefit most from what they provide. Global civilization — and the system of legal norms that arises from it — survives to a significant extent because the American military remains robust and widely deployed. And that, in turn, is not a situation that is necessarily permanent, or one that can ever be taken for granted.