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Belarus After Lukashenko: The Next Ukraine?

LukaPuti, cc http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/54178, modified, Kremlin.ru

Anything is possible when Belarus’ long-serving president steps aside, including a repeat of the Ukraine crisis.

Thailand’s Balancing Act Between the US and China in the Age of Trump

US and Thai soldiers during Cobra Gold joint military exercises in 2001, public domain, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cobra_Gold#/media/File:US_Army_instructs_Thai_Army_2001.jpg

Bangkok’s historically close security relationship with Washington appears to be firmly back on track.

TAP Pipeline: Look Who’s Switching Off the Gas This Time

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It's not Moscow, but the new government in Rome that might be turning off the TAP and dooming the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline project.

Close Call Foreshadows Growing Tensions in South China Sea

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The near miss involving US and Chinese warships in the South China Sea is a troubling sign of things to come.

The Bering Strait: A New Chokepoint for Great Power Competition

The attack submarine USS Annapolis (SSN 760) rests in the Arctic Ocean after surfacing through three feet of ice during Ice Exercise 2009 on March 21, 2009. The two-week training exercise, which is used to test submarine operability and war-fighting capability in Arctic conditions, also involves the USS Helena (SSN 725), the University of Washington and personnel from the Navy Arctic Submarine Laboratory. DoD photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Tiffini M. Jones, U.S. Navy. (Released), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:USS_Annapolis_ICEX.jpg

The Northern Sea Route through the Arctic will alter global trade flows and in doing so create new geopolitical chokepoints. Chief among them is the Bering Strait, where US, Russian, and Chinese interests converge.

Backgrounder: Brazil Elections 2018

Sessão Extraordinária Plenário Ulysses Guimarães Dep. Jair Bolsonaro Foto: Beto Oliveira 30.06.2011 - https://www.camara.leg.br/internet/bancoimagem/banco/2011/06/2011063018359_20110630_018LP_LC.jpg - modified - Beto Oliveira / Câmara dos Deputados

With a divided presidential field, anything can happen in Brazil’s upcoming presidential elections – and that’s what has investors worried.

Italy Budget Grapples with Debt, EU Spending Limits

Di_Maio_Toninelli_Grillo, cc https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Di_Maio_Toninelli_Grillo.jpg, modified, Presidenza della Repubblica

Early indications suggest that the austerity of Finance Minister Giovanni Tria has been eclipsed by spending initiatives from Italy’s anti-establishment coalition parties, sending yield rates for 10-year Italian bonds back toward 3%.

China-India Relations: A Pearl Is Unstrung in the Maldives

Ibrahim_Mohamed_Solih_-_Maldives2, cc Wikicommons, modified, Asimoosa, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ibrahim_Mohamed_Solih_-_Maldives2.jpg

Opposition politician Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has won the Maldives’ general election, putting China’s latest foray into India’s backyard in jeopardy.

Emerging Markets: Turkey Shifts to Austerity, But Will It Be Enough?

ErdoganKrem, cc Kremlin.ru, modified, http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/55011

Finance Minister Berat Albayrak unveils a new austerity drive, but the plan does nothing about the mountain of toxic debt in Turkey’s private sector.

EU Salzburg Summit Sinks May’s Latest Brexit Plan

May, cc Flcikr PRO EU2017EE Estonian Presidency, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The demise of Prime Minister May’s Chequers plan increases the odds of a hard Brexit.

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