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Why Russia is not Losing Siberia

By Ben Judah in Politics, February 5, 2013

The Yellow Peril was a feature of life in Soviet times and the demographics on either side of the Russia-China border do little to convince the fearful that Siberia will not be colonised by the Chinese.

Thomas Wyatt: The Heart’s Forest

By Allston Mitchell in Arts and Culture, February 2, 2013

In Susan Brigden’s new biography of the poet and diplomat Thomas Wyatt, the first truly modern voice in poetry is revealed as a canny player in the capricious and dangerous court of Henry VIII. A complex and flawed man of great genius whose poems were of unrivalled originality.

Have We Solved ‘Too Big to Fail’?

By Andrew G. Haldane in Economics and Finance, February 1, 2013

The Sub-prime Crisis became the Global Crisis when one too-big-to-fail bank was allowed to fail. Andrew Haldane, Executive Director, Financial Stability, at the Bank of England. argues that too-big-to-fail is far from gone despite years of reform efforts.

Dreams and Dilemmas of Iraqi Kurdistan

By Giorgio Cafiero in Politics,

The Kurds are perfectly placed to take advantage of the dissolution of the once great Arab states, Iraq and Syria and the dream of a Kurdish state looks closer to becoming a reality.

Libya’s Radical Muslim Groups

By Daniel Wagner - Giorgio Cafiero in Politics, January 23, 2013

It would be an understatement to say that the National Transition Council (NTC) has failed to govern Libya effectively since the fall of Gaddafi. The majority of territory outside Tripoli has fallen under the control of armed militias that have refused to disarm.

Lost Tribes

By Daniel Levy in Politics, January 15, 2013

The Israeli election on Jan 22 is not about Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu. It is best understood as a “Tribes of Israel” election that will take identity politics to a new level and may accelerate Israel’s journey towards hegemonic nationalism writes Daniel Levy, the Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations.

Religious Strife in Russia

By Astrit Dakli in Politics,

After four generations of being an officially secular state, Russia now has something akin to a war between moderate and hard line Islam being fought on its doorstep while the Orthodox Church is becoming heavily involved in Kremlin politics.

Rabih Abou-Khalil

By Allston Mitchell in Arts and Culture, January 14, 2013

The Lebanese-born oud player and composer (now a European of long standing) talks to TGD about his new CD “Hungry People” out on Harmonia Mundi. On the way he touches on Arab and Western musical styles and his musical influences from Thelonious Monk to the Mighty Sparrow.

The MONUSCO Contradiction

By Moctar Aboubacar in Politics,

Elevating the military role of UN peacekeeping forces would do little to address the root causes of instability and violence in the Congo. MONUSCO needs to be a force for stability in a diverse field of international actors, and it needs to help provide for a more durable system of civilian protection.

Happy 2013?

By Charles Wyplosz in Economics and Finance, January 10, 2013

Financial market quiescence has removed pressure for immediate policy action on the Eurozone crisis. While important repairs were made in 2012, the most difficult ones still lie ahead. Much remains to be done by unwilling politicians. Things will have to get worse before they get better.