The stilted evolution of democracy in Afghanistan has been further affected by the existence and proliferation of competing centers of power outside the scope of the constitution. Parallel structures of governance have impacted the overall democratic structure adversely.
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been entangled in the Panamagate scandal revealed on April 3, 2016. The eight offshore companies listed in the Panama Papers are linked to his family members, including a daughter, two sons, and the in-laws of his brother.
As a small state, Singapore’s foreign policy is largely premised on a realist approach to international relations. At the same time, the question as to whether realism can be harmonized with a principled approach to the practice of diplomacy is worth pondering.
Cambodia has recently become much closer to China in almost every respect, leading some scholars to label Cambodia-China relations as a client-patron relationship. Meanwhile, Cambodia’s bilateral relations with the US have been getting worse.
Currently, Cambodia’s foreign policy faces significant challenges amid great power rivalry for regional influence. The high-level official defense visits between China and Cambodia highlight the strong cooperation which is widely seen to be at the expense of the US.
In recent years, the downward spiral in Saudi-Iran relations, the worsening Syrian conflict, the Saudi-led war in Yemen, and the rise of new diplomatic rivalries between the Sunni Arab states have created new complications for Pakistan.
Contemporary East Asia seems to resemble much more an American tianxia than a Chinese one. And not just East Asia. America’s NATO allies are tightly integrated into US-centered security institutions, and the European Union is in effect controlled by NATO countries.
The first FONOP under the Trump administration occurred in late May 2017, when the USS Dewey made a non-innocent passage within 12 nm of Mischief Reef. It raised questions as to the purpose and effectiveness of US FONOPs in the South China Sea.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel in July 2017, in a year which marks the 25th anniversary of Indian-Israeli ties, is probably amongst his most important so far. The India-Israel FTA may move forward during Modi’s visit.