It’s Time to Talk About Taiwan | Defense One


In an interview with 60 Minutes on Sunday night, Democratic front-runner Bernie Sanders suggested that he might take military action to defend Taiwan if China attacks it. The implication is that a Sanders Administration would fundamentally transform America’s security policy toward Taiwan—a move that would surely cause hand-wringing in foreign policy circles from Washington to Beijing.

At least in this instance, Sanders is right to shake things up. Washington’s longstanding policy of “strategic ambiguity” is increasingly likely to inflame the very kind of crisis that it was intended to deter.

It’s time for Washington to re-evaluate, redefine and clarify its commitment to Taiwan.

Source: It’s Time to Talk About Taiwan – Defense One

Kenney promises new law to protect ‘critical infrastructure’ after Teck Frontier withdrawal | CBC News


Premier Jason Kenney promised to do “whatever it takes” to protect Alberta’s economic future — including legislation to avert railway blockades — as organizations reacted Monday to the bombshell news that mining giant Teck Resources was withdrawing its application for a $20-billion oilsands mine.

Kenney said Monday in a news conference that his government would introduce legislation to protect what he calls “critical infrastructure” in the province, including railways.

Source: Kenney promises new law to protect ‘critical infrastructure’ after Teck Frontier withdrawal | CBC News

In Ecuador, Protests Left a Lasting Mark on Moreno—and the Country’s Future


When it comes to repairing the harm done by populist authoritarian leaders, restoring the independence of democratic institutions is often just the start. The next challenge can be to steer polarized societies through the economic belt-tightening that is required after an autocrat’s spending spree.

That seems to be the message from Ecuador, where President Lenin Moreno won overwhelming support in a 2018 constitutional referendum that overturned much of the political legacy of his predecessor and one-time mentor, the brash leftist Rafael Correa, and also blocked him from returning to office by putting a two-term limit on the presidency.

But Moreno then sparked a deadly firestorm of national protests last October after signing a deal with the International Monetary Fund to restructure the debt he inherited from Correa, in part by drastically slashing fuel subsidies.

Source: In Ecuador, Protests Left a Lasting Mark on Moreno—and the Country’s Future

Trump’s Middle East peace plan: What’s there to be upset about?


For what else can be made of a plan that emphasizes that the Palestinian leadership did not reject Rabin’s vision at the time? And, as if the point the plan’s authors were trying to drive home was not adequately clear, they made sure to underscore that Rabin’s vision was explicit on “Jerusalem remaining united under Israeli rule; on the portions of the West bank with large Jewish populations and the Jordan valley being incorporated in Israel; and on the remainder of the West Bank, along with Gaza, becoming subject to Palestinian autonomy…in something that was less than a state.”

With Trump’s vision embracing these tenets of Rabin’s, the authors are clearly suggesting that the widely anticipated Palestinian rejection of the plan is unjustifiable.

There is a lot to unpack here.

Source: Trump’s Middle East peace plan: What’s there to be upset about?

White-Supremacist Violence Is Terrorism | The Atlantic


For much of the past 50 years, white-supremacist groups were largely relegated to the fringes of American society, where they continued to survive, if not thrive, as a shameful artifact of history. Yet today they are finding a geopolitical landscape that has grown permissive, or even supportive, of their rhetoric and activities—and we need to do more to combat them. The recent decision of the FBI to elevate racially motivated violent extremism to a “national threat priority” is a strong start.

These malign actors are terrorists, and that’s what we should call them. What’s more, we need a comprehensive domestic-terrorism law, one that would help bring the full weight of our laws and resources against the unaddressed and violent manifestations of racism that still persist in American culture today.

Source: White-Supremacist Violence Is Terrorism – The Atlantic

Japan to further ease rules on foreign ownership of stocks: sources | Reuters


Japan will add exemptions to new foreign investment restrictions for companies exposed to sensitive national security issues, government sources said, in a move aimed at keeping overseas capital in the country.

The exemptions will benefit foreign hedge funds and wealth asset managers, which own or invest heavily in Japanese shares, and help underpin Tokyo’s stock market – a key element of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s “Abenomics” stimulus policies.

Source: Exclusive: Japan to further ease rules on foreign ownership of stocks: sources – Reuters

Seven killed, 150 injured in riots in New Delhi | Reuters


At least seven people were killed and around 150 were injured in clashes between opposing groups in the Indian capital, a police official told Reuters on Tuesday, the deadliest riots in the city since protests against a new citizenship law began over two months ago.

Source: Seven killed, 150 injured in riots in New Delhi – Reuters

Israel-Gaza ceasefire takes hold after two-day flare-up | Reuters


A ceasefire brokered by Egypt and the United Nations took hold on the Israel-Gaza border on Tuesday after two days of fighting between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group.

Islamic Jihad had fired 80 rockets towards Israeli communities along the Gaza border since Sunday, an Israeli military spokeswoman said, while Israel attacked sites in Gaza and Syria that killed three members of the militant group.

Source: Israel-Gaza ceasefire takes hold after two-day flare-up – Reuters

Global stocks pause after coronavirus shakeout | Reuters


Global stock markets stabilised on Tuesday after a wave of early selling petered out and Wall Street futures managed a solid bounce after the previous day’s sharp selloff on fears about the spreading coronavirus.

European shares recorded their worst one-day loss since June 2016 on Monday as worries about the spread of the new virus far beyond China whacked global markets and risk sentiment.

Source: Global stocks pause after coronavirus shakeout – Reuters

After raucous welcome in India, Trump clinches $3 billion military equipment sale | Reuters


U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that India will buy $3 billion worth of military equipment, including attack helicopters, as the two countries deepen defense and commercial ties in an attempt to balance the weight of China in the region.

India and the United States were also making progress on a big trade deal, Trump said. Negotiators from the two sides have wrangled for months to narrow differences on farm goods, medical devices, digital trade and new tariffs.

Source: After raucous welcome in India, Trump clinches $3 billion military equipment sale – Reuters