Backgrounders

Warfare Evolved: Quantum Encryption

cc Nasa, modified, public domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:GPS_Satellite_NASA_art-iif.jpg

Advances in quantum encryption could change the way that modern states conduct their intelligence-gathering.

The Wagner Group: Origins and Early Deployments

cc Kremlin.ru, http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/60797, modified,

First in a two-part series, this backgrounder traces the origins and earliest deployments of Russia’s infamous mercenary outfit: the Wagner Group.

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.

Backgrounder: China’s Military Modernization Comes of Age

cc Flickr emperornie, modified, https://www.flickr.com/photos/77326563@N06/14110452040/

The latest defense department report on China’s military modernization suggests that Beijing is rapidly closing the capability gap with Western peers, particularly with regard to air, sea, and missile forces.

Warfare Evolved: Drone Swarms

cc Flickr, modified, Greg Goebel, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

The advent of drones may have revolutionized modern warfare, but the disruptions are only getting started.

Backgrounder: The Rise of Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua

cc Rosa_Poser, modified, Flickr, https://flickr.com/photos/77992023@N08/9560472331/in/photolist-fyPVkR-5SB6Gd-QS8deJ-2dJnKgu-2drwhmH-Pb2LMv-29XUVvf-8nweYh-26VbEYb-2jbSvW3-282kW7e-24eqFbw-4UbRyJ-caBTR-24eqFoW-MDn7fP-MDn6GK-MDn7CT-25gw7Sw-Mt1boa-7fi6Au-caBNW-282kVHi-25gw8Um-7fegn8-WR34zm-6498oQ-Mt1b6B-25gw8sj-7fi5cj-649gPf-J1qLH5-qYEUuq-2a8mkGw-qjqZxa-518mNX-6496oq-qjqZg8-P6as1S-2a8mkL9-7fefet-2hGCwRP-2hGCwEb-2hGCx7i-P6as4N-2hGF8wE-2ggVQA3-7fia6E-2ggWmKx-2ggWmQC

Examining the political rise of Daniel Ortega, a figure who has come to dominate politics in Nicaragua.

Backgrounder: Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC)

cc Bruce Detorres, Flickr, modified, https://flickr.com/photos/brucedetorres/43351771930/in/photolist-5d3vbP-9cqNhh-5d7TA9-5d34Rn-5d3twn-5d3Btk-5d7rcN-5d7Dm7-5d7SWh-dbW5yg-5d33DK-5d7G9d-5d3gcH-5d7mX5-5d7Hah-5d3bWg-5d7ZXj-5d3cUH-5d7YRA-5d31Hr-5d7VEy-5d395x-5d3w5e-5d7zPG-7BsdUR-5d3aWT-5d3yNe-5d35ED-NrCHU7-MwWfDp-5d3sHa-5d3pBn-5d7Mvf-5d7y8C-5d3i1M-9dvcUL-5d7EWo-5d7EcU-5d7uus-5d3wM8-5d7PK5-qsiiS-5d3qrg-6DvAe1-tBLFH-uzU3x-5d3APt-2iaHW9-293RarC-2aHsgRE

The race is on to bring cash into the digital era, and finance may never be the same.

Backgrounder: 2021 Nicaraguan Elections

Anti-government protesters in the monument to Alexis Arguello in Managua, May 9, 2018 , cc El arzobispo, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Protest_in_Managua,_May_9,_2018.jpg

Examining the slow and steady criminalization of dissent in the lead-up to Nicaragua’s 2021 election.

Strategic Commodities 2.0: Global Uranium Supply & Demand

cc Achilaos, wikicommons, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Search&limit=500&offset=0&ns0=1&ns6=1&ns14=1&search=nuclear+power+plant#/media/File:Leibstadt_AG_-_Nuclear_Power_Plant_-_02.jpg

Next in our series on strategic commodities we examine uranium, a key input in nuclear power generation that was included on the US Interior Department’s list of critical minerals.

Backgrounder: 2021 Tunisia Political Crisis

The palace view as Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper meets with Tunisian President Kais Saied, at Carthage Palace, Tunisia, Sept. 30, 2020. (DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando), cc U.S. Secretary of Defense, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:200930-D-BN624-2191_(50402134718).jpg

Examining the background and consequences of the sudden removal of Tunisia’s prime minister.

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