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Afghanistan’s Fate Will Be Shaped by Geoeconomics

Operation Enduring Freedom

Three geoeconomic factors will determine the future of Taliban-controlled Afghanistan: opium, natural resources, and regional trade networks.

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Global Forecast (9-20-2021)

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France withdraws ambassadors over AUKUS, Canada heads to the polls, and the Federal Reserve prepares to show its hand on bond tapering.

Timeline: The Downward Spiral of China-Australia Relations

Prime Minister and Andrew Robb signing the Free Trade Agreement with Chinese President Xi and Minister for Commerce Gao Hucheng., 2014, cc Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website – www.dfat.gov.au, modified 0 https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Abbott_and_Robb_signing_the_Free_Trade_Agreement_with_Chinese_President_Xi_and_Minister_for_Commerce_Gao_Hucheng_November_2014.jpg

Chronicling the events that led to the present low point in China-Australia relations.

Europe’s Energy Crisis Goes from Bad to Worse

cc ruben van eijk, Flickr, modified, https://www.flickr.com/photos/073/3163309842

Record-high natural gas prices have European consumers hoping for a mild winter.

Is the Australia-UK-USA Trilateral Security Partnership (AUKUS) a Gamechanger?

Pictured is HMS Ambush returning to HMNB Clyde in Scotland., cc Flickr Defence Images, https://flickr.com/photos/defenceimages/9522632603/in/photolist-fvtYUK-2jvDiab-fmb3EE-2ki7bRg-2hLXvyq-2kYn1ir-vWMtJQ-2krQA2g-Xda2ms-2gVEfRr-2dvRio9-2bxdsxh-2kZSKx7-2gnGJiZ-i1Cji-2grCbXH-divhFt-ek2ELw-2grCcix-2gnH86i-8mkqff-fmb3Dj-7CPPUd-hKchQ-2gUoQq4-dkxhD8-divhBV-2iukW5U-6sw9G1-5yypmV-dF5FSj-dEZgsr-dF5FPJ-SWdZuE-evC8Ec-hJEvb4-HHdBMr-divgvQ-divhJn-fpm5Po-divgzj-6z8nQp-ijchoS-wey27c-fp6Q3Z-rDjWBr-D3FtQV-2jddQbZ-2jx7D5g-2m3g9Mk

The pact is notable in its shift from style to substance in US-led efforts to counter China in the Indo-Pacific.

Evergrande: China’s Property Goliath Teeters on the Brink

Tianjin Skyline in 2008 cc Flickr Jakob Montrasio, https://flickr.com/photos/yakobusan/2363688612/in/photolist-or5QKs-4ASwgW-jsPxZm-9mqSr4-5p1eV4-5px8HG-qeK7Q6-jRG1hi-cfSysm-avFEWz-gn4sq7-nF9keS-7QGK-apBigU-e7s8ma-nkFxDm-GkXecR-nkFEPv-nkFn3k-MHcYC1-osM6DE-bUT8n4-dzJz2q-9ZHKC8-8Mk6Rd-rnKVP2-XWH1yv-rnEddr-agoRz8-oSXUEZ-oAtroj-nkFCRT-duM8s9-DS9SS7-MDuhXW-qqTdid-r6jFG9-Mfx5Y1-H7prF9-MfxcVC-r6iM77-2dQb9KS-Wfunid-orxeSV-WVcV4J-ottDJg-DS9Giw-Xsevz5-nBWZzA-owkMvgmodified,

What does too-big-to-fail with Chinese characteristics look like? Evergrande could be just that.

Nickel Prices Recover, Seek Out New Highs

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Supply concerns seem to be trumping fears of technological disruptions, with an EV-driven demand boom looming on the horizon.

What Does a Taliban-Controlled Afghanistan Mean for India’s Foreign Policy?

cc G20 Argentina, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan reshuffles the geopolitical deck in Central Asia, leaving India with what appears to be a losing hand.

Global Forecast (9-13-2021)

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Russian elections, a US angle on the Guinean coup, and a financial crisis in Sri Lanka.

ECB Moves to Scale Back COVID-Era Bond Buying

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Citing improved growth and rising inflation, the ECB moved to scale back its bond purchases. But don’t call it a taper.

Dissolving the Leviathan in Lebanon

cc Mahdi Shojaeian, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Damages_after_2020_Beirut_explosions_1.jpg

The mismanagement of Lebanon is almost criminally negligent. But perhaps that’s the point.

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