On Monday the global commodity exchanges reacted to the situation in Iraq with oil price hikes. However, experts assume that economic shock is only a part of the future problems that the Middle East and the world community in general are bound to face.
Ukraine has quietly launched the presidential election campaign, appointed by the Verkhovna Rada for May 25. Experts call Crimea the main theme of the campaign, its main issue is the legitimacy of the election itself, the main favorite is Yulia Tymoshenko. In addition to the "gas princess", potential candidates for the presidency of Ukraine are Vitaly Klitschko, Oleg Tiagnybok, and Petro Poroshenko.
25 years ago, the almost 10-year long deployment of the limited contingent of Soviet forces in Afghanistan drew to a close. Experts have since been at variance about the assessment of the Afghan campaign, but they invariably agree that it was the biggest-scale (and actually quite ambiguous, obviously for that reason) foreign policy action throughout the post-war history of the Soviet Union.
Iranians are celebrating the 35th anniversary of the Islamic revolution. Against the background of official toasts and congratulatory telegrams, contradictions within the Iranian society grow more noticeable, and this can be easily explained by the critical question of social and political modernization.
The number of participants of anti-government rallies at Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square) in Ukraine’s capital Kiev is rapidly decreasing. The Ukrainian opposition’s leaders are starting to think whether they should look for another form of protests than street rallies.
Some experts even believe that it is for the better. Although the disintegration on the continent may turn out to be deeper than skeptics are dreaming of it. Everyone has heard of the example of Scotland. The referendum scheduled for this autumn should demonstrate, whether the inhabitants of this historically independent Kingdom and now the most autonomous part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland's want to obtain full sovereignty.
The uranium laser enrichment technology that has been given a new impetus in the US is capable of knocking the bottom out of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). The technology consists in uranium isotope separation with laser stimulation (SILEX). Optimists put a great deal of trust in this and pessimists warn about negative consequences.
Six Arab countries of the Persian Gulf region have started to form a united military contingent. Its incidence is expected to be 10,000 people. As the initiators of this step are claiming, their decision was dictated by an increasing threat of aggression from Iran.
Arab Persian Gulf kingdoms are building a 100,000-strong collective defense force to counter an alleged threat from Iran.
The French military seems to be holding its ground in Africa. Observers point out that Paris's formally peacekeeping operations amount to an attempt to make the most of its presence in France's former colonies politically and economically.
Despite progress towards a nuclear deal with Iran, the United States isn’t going to curtail the planned deployment of its anti-missile system in Europe. One reason, analysts say, is that too much money is involved.
The international conference on Syria that will be held at the end of January is very important, though experts doubt that it will lead to a breakthrough. In fact the Syrian government doesn’t have an opponent that can make an agreement with it. Ban Ki-moon, the UN General Secretary, stated that the main aim of the Geneva-2 convention was to imply former agreements, according to which a transitional governmental organ, possessing exertive power, will be created in Syria. “We are heading to Geneva with the mission of Hope”, said Ban Ki-moon.
Russia is hastily forming a rapid deployment force. Experts say that what is meant here first of all is searching for an adequate response to the threat of export of instability coming from Afghanistan, which is increasingly growing.
The approval rating of French President François Hollande has hit an all-time record low. Word has it the President is going to replace the Prime Minister. But experts say it’s time to change the entire policy.
According to the UN, today more than a billion of people in the world suffer from starvation. Experts believe that the problem can not be solved within the current political-economic paradigm framework.
The US is forced to cut its defense budget. The figures with many digits conceal America's inability to preserve its exclusivity relying only on military force. Defense spending and some other expenses will be cut by about one trillion USD by the year 2021. American military officials believe that the sudden cuts and the lack of flexibility of the cuts could reduce the combat power of the country to a dangerous level.
President Hassan Rouhani's policy forces the West to abandon skepticism regarding negotiability of the Islamic Republic. Iran announced their decision to stop enriching uranium to 20 percent, which was one of the key demands of the international community for Iran's nuclear program.
NATO has again announced that it is not yet ready for cooperation with the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). Experts believe that NATO’s unwillingness to cooperate with the CSTO is laying restrictions on itself rather than on the Collective Security Treaty Organization.
The world public is more and more actively getting involved in the discussion about the ethical aspect of the problem of combat robots, which can get out of control and turn against their creators. There are numerous facts confirming that serious work to develop autonomous systems that can fight a battle without the involvement of human beings is currently being done. Such systems are called LARS (lethal autonomous systems).
According to the estimates made by the World Energy Council, the world's proven oil reserves will last for 56 years, the proven reserves of natural gas – for 55 years. No all experts agree with the alarmist scenarios, although most do believe that there are tough times in front of the industry.