Posts Categorized: Regions and Powers

The Moonlanding

“I’ll be the first Palestinian woman to land on the moon,” she states with a wry smile. The world – and space – lies at her feet, as in theory it does for children all over the world. But these particular legs are standing on shaky ground. Her legs are in Lebanon, more specifically, they’re… Read more »

Digital India: Less Cash, but not Cashless

The past month has seen historic events in India. On Tuesday 8 November 2016, the Modi government announced without prior warning that all 500 and 1000 Indian rupee notes would be rendered valueless more or less overnight. In effect, this meant immediate withdrawal of the largest bank notes in circulation, and issuance of new notes… Read more »

What This Election Means for US Foreign Policy

The resonance of this U.S. election campaign is truly enormous, in every corner of the world. But despite much disgust about the mudslinging, it is not necessarily all that negative. Observers everywhere may be astounded that a candidate so arrogantly ignorant in international affairs could gather so much support, but that has also given them… Read more »

To Tame a Hawk

Hillary Clinton is not seeking attention for her views on Syria. And she has her reasons for not doing so. We can safely say that the 2016 US election campaign has been one of a kind. There is nothing new about the use of harsh rhetoric in pursuit of votes. The candidates and their supporters… Read more »

No One can Fill King Bhumibol’s Shoes

For 70 years, the beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) ruled Thailand, and to date he has represented the country’s only stable political reference point. Since the introduction of the constitutional kingdom in 1932, the country has been through 19 different constitutions and 12 military coups – the latest just two years ago. The King’s… Read more »

White Helmets in the Dark Night

In the long dark night that is the Syrian nightmare, the White Helmets have become the only ray of light. “In an earlier PRIO blog post, Erica Chenoweth observed that “there are really two types of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates – elites (or elite-led institutions) and ordinary people.” This year, for example, the Colombian nominees… Read more »

An Alarm from Aleppo

At dawn on 23 September, Syrian and Russian fighter jets roared over eastern Aleppo, bringing new death and destruction to the city’s besieged inhabitants. The attacks followed several days of relative quiet, but the ensuing days and nights were worse than ever. The chaos makes it difficult to determine exactly how many were killed, but… Read more »

Women, Peace and Security?

The Norwegian government had lofty ambitions to implement UN Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security in Faryab Province in Afghanistan. However, attempts to realise these ambitions were half-hearted. The role of the gender adviser became a political alibi for the Norwegian Provincial Reconstruction Team’s haphazard efforts to implement the resolution. The UN Security Council… Read more »

Rhetoric as Required

From “the pre-emptive defence of Norway”, to “conflict resolution and peace”, even in the event of “war-like actions”, Norwegian politicians have adapted their rhetoric on Afghanistan as required by circumstances and public opinion. From day one, the Norwegian government has been enthusiastic in its support of intervention in Afghanistan. But over the years many different… Read more »