Poland and the partnership with the United States: The US has shifted its focus to China. This makes sense geopolitically, but it is problematic for eastern European countries. For Finland, the Baltic States and Poland, Russia has traditionally been a powerful threat in the east. A separatist division of any of these countries could well fuel Moscow. The annexation of Crimea and the propaganda game around it have not been forgotten. It is interesting, however, that Poland is not turning to Europe. Within Nato, Poland primarily seeks direct proximity to the United States and not proximity to Europe. Poland is exceeding Nato’s two percent target by half a percent and is buying 32 F-35 fighter jets from the United States. Poland is also pushing ahead with the Nato Defender 2020 maneuver, which has been reduced as much as possible due to Covid-19. Unfortunately, this clearly shows how unattractive the EU is as a partner in security matters.
Warm greetings from
– Editor Defensio Briefing –
Hifter wants ceasefire: Libyan commander Khalifa Hifter declared on Saturday that he was ready to stop fighting and enter talks to end Libya’s civil war. He made the cease-fire offer in Cairo as he stood alongside his Egyptian ally, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Egypt, along with Russia and the United Arab Emirates, have invested heavily in supporting Hifter and are now scrambling to limit his losses after the dramatic collapse of his 14-month campaign to capture Tripoli. The announcement was unlikely to bring an immediate end to the fighting. But it offered new evidence of the decisive clout of Turkey, on the other side of Libya’s war, whose intervention in favor of the UN-backed government in Tripoli has thwarted Russia’s ambitions and shifted the course of the conflict.
Donor conference for Yemen: International donors have raised $1.35 billion in humanitarian aid for Yemen but the amount fell short of the United Nations’ target of $2.4 billion needed to save the world’s biggest aid operation from severe cutbacks. Britain – which sells weapons to coalition members – and Germany announced respectively $201 million and $140 million. They called on the warring parties to immediately end the conflict that has killed more than 100,000 people, mostly civilians.
North Korea has severed all communication with South Korea: North Korea announced Tuesday it was axing all communications with South Korea, a move analysts believe could be an attempt to manufacture a crisis and force concessions from its neighbor. North Korea said it was suspending contact in anger at activist defectors who have fled to the South and routinely fly balloons back over the border carrying propaganda leaflets. Many experts suspect the underlying reason is an attempt to gain leverage in inter-Korean negotiations that have stalled since a series of high-profile summits in 2018.
Fulbe gangs are a growing threat in Nigeria: The Fulani people (also known as Fulbe or Peul) are one of the largest ethnic groups in West Africa, with at least 25 million members. However, because the Fulani are scattered throughout the region, in most states they are a minority. Traditionally, they live as nomadic pastoralists. Conflicts occur frequently. Even though the situations vary according to the country and region, there are recurrent patterns. In Nigeria alone, one must distinguish between three types of incidents, says Nigerian journalist Aliyu Tilde. First is the conflict over land between nomadic herders and farmers. There is also the possibility of gang criminality. The third type is the most problematic: In the struggle for political supremacy in Nigerian states, local rulers would often strengthen their own ethnic groups and agitate against minorities.
UN decries human rights violations in the Philippines: Human rights abuses in the Philippines have worsened under President Rodrigo Duterte, with police and vigilantes encouraged to use lethal force in the country’s war on drugs, the UN human rights office said in a new report published Thursday. According to the report, police forces received a command circular containing terminology referring to the “negation” and “neutralization” of drug suspects, echoing pledges made by Duterte. Raids on private households were routinely carried out without warrants, while police reports where alleged drug suspects had been killed shared very similar language, raising the question whether they had been completed “pro forma”, rather than describing operations as they really happened.
Boogaloo movement: They want war faz.net
America’s pressure on Israel: The friendship stops at China handelsblatt.com
US troop transfer: Dangerous – and perhaps welcome? tagesschau.de
Textbook: An impressive basic course in geopolitics for children tagesspiegel.de
Kosovo: The diplomatic proxy war faz.net
NUMBER OF THE WEEK
According to a survey by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, 30 percent of Poles associate Germany with war.
Preparations for an Arctic Cold War: According to a report from Denmark, tensions between the world’s major power players regarding arctic resources are foreseeable. Climate change is accelerating the melting of the polar caps – free routes for ships could soon become a reality. Among other things, the routes between Russia and Canada would suddenly be shortened. However, power struggles for resources under the ice are also expected. Denmark wants to maintain the partnership with the United States – but without selling Greenland to the United States, as President Trump suggested.
Wars from a historical perspective: Martin Clauss, Professor of European History in the Middle Ages and the Early modern period at Chemnitz University of Technology, analyzes the history of violence and war in the Middle Ages. Historically, violence and war have had positive connotations – especially because it justified the nobility’s merits. When society was divided into the peasantry, clergy and nobility, the nobility enjoyed privileges, which it justified to protect the common good. In doing so, nobles risked their own lives, making war decisions something to be carefully considered.
Defense wants more time in Dutch MH17 trial: Defense lawyers have insisted they needed more time to prepare at the trial of suspects in the downing of a Malaysia Airlines flight over eastern Ukraine, as proceedings resumed after a coronavirus lockdown was eased in the Netherlands. Hearings resumed Monday with extra social distancing measures in place. Four defendants went on trial in March over the downing of flight MH17, which killed all 298 aboard, after nearly six years of research by international investigators. Investigators say the missile launcher used to hit the jet came from a Russian army base just across the border. They add that pro-Russian forces had frequently been in contact with government officials in Moscow before the July 17, 2014 strike.
“It is extremely important that the International Red Cross is guaranteed access.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Selenskyj has called for relief organizations to have better access to eastern Ukraine.
Support for refugees in Turkey to increase: The EU Commission has proposed to top up support for refugees and host communities in response to the Syria crisis by a total of €585 million. Out of the amount proposed, €100 million will go to Jordan and Lebanon, who are hosting the largest number of refugees per capita in the world. €485 million will support refugees in Turkey in 2020 and continue the EU’s two flagship humanitarian programmes.