24 November 2014   Leave a comment

We’ve noted earlier that there have been a number of incidents between NATO and Russian forces lately.  Generally speaking, these incidents are tests of both capability and will.  At least that is what intended.  The danger of these types of incidents is that they could mistakenly escalate due to some error or miscalculation.  If you’re keeping score, the chart below gives a tally of the incidents that we know about.  I am certain that there are many more that have not been reported.  It’s a risky game that both sides are playing.

The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has stated that “[o]ur religion [Islam] has defined a position for women: motherhood”.  The speech has ignited a firestorm of criticism within Turkey.  Later in the speech he stated that “What women need is to be able to be equivalent, rather than equal. Because equality turns the victim into an oppressor and vice versa.”  The comments follow similar comments made by the President and some of his advisers in recent days.  Over the last few years, many in Turkey have protested what they perceive to be a growing authoritarianism in the Erdogan administration.

The P5+1 and Iran failed to reach an agreement on the Iranian nuclear program today, but all sides agreed to extend the negotiation period by 7 months.  It is hard to interpret how close the two sides were to an agreement since details of the negotiations have been sparse.  But the extension is a good sign since the alternative was to confess that an agreement was not possible.  The extension poses a political problem for the US since it is clear that there are elements in the US Congress that would prefer to impose more stringent sanctions, and any move in that direction would definitely scuttle the possibility of an agreement.


Posted November 25, 2014 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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