14 May 2024

Negotiating Climate Finance: India’s Leadership Role in the Global South

Shanthie Mariet D’Souza

Indian parliamentary elections are taking place amid soaring summer temperatures, crossing 40 degrees Celsius (104 F) as voters queue up to cast their ballots amid heat waves sweeping most parts of the country. The elections will conclude in early June and the new government will have to tackle an array of issues such as poverty, unemployment, pollution, water shortages, food insecurity, and rising temperatures that have direct linkages with climate change. In the coming months, India will also experience the annual monsoon, projected to be above average in 2024, which brings much-needed respite for the agricultural sector but also deluges parts of the country.

India’s ability to tackle climate change will depend upon domestic action and also the way it negotiates with the Global North on critical issues of climate reparations and technology transfer.

In the past few years, India, the third largest emitter of carbon dioxide behind China and the United States, has sought to position itself as the leader of the Global South in climate change negotiations. It has demanded that the world’s approach to climate change must include justice and equity accompanied by climate reparations and technology transfer.

China’s Complex Presence In Southeast Asia – Analysis

Enze Han

There is considerable uncertainty in Southeast Asia regarding what a resurgent China means for the region. Over the past four decades, the once impoverished communist country has emerged as the world’s second-largest economy, transforming the image of Chinese people from famine-stricken to major consumers and investors. Due to the immense size of the Chinese economy, its vast population and its enigmatic authoritarian government, China’s intentions towards the region remain a significant question mark for Southeast Asian countries.

Debates abound within Southeast Asia regarding the implications of this resurgence of a historical hegemon for the region. This is primarily due to the deep, historical interconnectedness between China and Southeast Asia, established through tribute, trade and migration. Uncertainty stems from a lack of consensus on the nature of the great power China represents and may become. Some suggest that China is the celestial kingdom of the past, seeking to reassert its former tributary relations with Southeast Asia, while others worry it will resemble the colonial powers of the imperial West, which seized control of the region, plundered resources and enslaved people.

Japanese angst as India set to become 4th largest economy

Julian Ryall

The announcement that India will overtake Japan in nominal gross domestic product in dollar terms in 2025 has shocked Tokyo. Until 2010, Japan had been home to the world's undisputed second-largest economy, but it's now on the brink of slipping to fifth place.

In estimates released in late April, the International Monetary Fund indicated that India's nominal GDP will reach $4.34 trillion (€4.03 trillion) in 2025, surpassing Japan's $4.31 trillion. The timing of India's surge into fourth place comes one year earlier than the IMF's last estimate, due in large part to the weakness of the Japanese yen.

Japan's decline in the global economic standings follows the government's confirmation that the nation had slipped behind Germany in 2023. The shock at India likely surpassing Japan next year is comparable to 2010, when a buoyant China replaced Japan as the world's second-largest economy.

"For Japan, this is a very big concern — but few people are talking about it openly because it is embarrassing and very difficult to solve," said Martin Schulz, chief policy economist for Fujitsu's Global Market Intelligence Unit.

The Squad: Adding an ‘S’ for Security

Oorja Tapan

Amid rising tensions in the South China Sea and the potential for conflict over Taiwan, the U.S. Department of Defense has been ramping up its diplomatic efforts in the Indo-Pacific region to counter China’s escalating regional threats and ambitions. Recently, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin convened a meeting with his counterparts from Japan, Australia, and the Philippines, dubbed the new “Squad” defense partnership.

This quadrilateral alliance is just one of several regional partnerships the United States has forged to counter China’s assertiveness in the wider Indo-Pacific region. Other notable partnerships include the Quad – consisting of the U.S., Australia, India, and Japan – as well as AUKUS, a defense pact between Australia, the U.K., and the U.S. Together these illustrate the larger “minilateral” foreign policy of the Biden administration in the Indo-Pacific region, all geared to keep the pressure high on Chinese belligerence.

China views the newly formed “Squad” as another attempt by the U.S. to contain China as part of its Indo-Pacific Strategy. Beijing warns of a “Ukrainization” of the Philippines – essentially casting the country as a pawn under U.S. influence in the “Great Power Game.”

Behind the Scenes: China’s Increasing Role in Russia’s Defense Industry

Nathaniel Sher

Carnegie Politika is a digital publication that features unmatched analysis and insight on Russia, Ukraine and the wider region. For nearly a decade, Carnegie Politika has published contributions from members of Carnegie’s global network of scholars and well-known outside contributors and has helped drive important strategic conversations and policy debates.LEARN MORE

Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Chinese exports to Russia have risen by more than 60 percent. Many analysts suggest that trade with China is providing nothing short of a lifeline to Russia’s economy. In the process, China has emerged as the largest supplier of not only commercial goods, but increasingly of dual-use components covered by Western export controls.

Publicly available customs data indicate that every month, China is exporting over $300 million worth of dual-use products identified by the United States, the European Union, Japan, and the United Kingdom as “high priority” items necessary for Russia’s weapons production (Figure 1). While monthly transactions have declined from a peak of over $600 million in December 2023, China remains Russia’s largest supplier of these controlled products.

Are Campus Protesters Heroes or Hypocrites?

Emma Ashford and Matthew Kroenig

Emma Ashford: Hi, Matt, how is your week going? It’s the end of the semester, and I’m sure things on campus must be peaceful and tranquil as the students prepare for their exams.

After Iran attack, will the US stand with Israel against Hezbollah? - opinion


As a consequence of October 7, Israel is a traumatized but still resilient country. Until the joint American-Israeli anti-missile response to the Iranian assault on April 14, Israel felt isolated, as its primary ally in the world appeared to be turning its back because of its actions in Gaza as it fought an existential battle against Hamas, Hezbollah, and their patron, Iran.

Will the alliance remain strong after Israel responded to the Iranian attack? President Joe Biden told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to “take the win” and not counterattack the Islamic Republic of Iran. Or will the relationship return to the strained status before the attack, as Israel may next be forced to confront Hezbollah in Lebanon? Without American support and resupply, can Israel effectively fight Hezbollah, returning its citizens to the North and regaining deterrence against Iran’s principal proxy?

Statements from the Biden administration and its supporters before the Iranian attack have shocked Israelis as never before. Former House speaker Nancy Pelosi signed a letter written by antisemitic members of Congress calling to end the transfer of weapons to Israel. Biden called for an immediate ceasefire without an explicit linkage to the release of all the hostages, who are continually sexually abused.

Minsk Confirms Deployment of Russian Tactical Nuclear Weapons in Belarus

Alexander Taranov

The new military doctrine of Belarus, which includes a provision on Russian nuclear weapons, was adopted by the All-Belarusian People’s Assembly (ABPA) during its recent session on April 24 and 25 in Minsk (see EDM, May 2). The text, however, did not clarify the role and status of tactical nuclear weapons (TNW). The document only declared what many already knew in advance (see EDM, March 12). According to the new doctrine, the deployment of Russian nuclear weapons on Belarusian territory is considered an essential component of deterrence for Minsk. It is also a forced reaction to the failure of Western guarantor countries to comply with the terms of the Memorandum on Security Assurances in connection with the accession of the Republic of Belarus to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, also known as the Budapest Memorandum (Pravo.by, April 25). Last year, Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka confirmed that he was discussing the deployment of Russian strategic nuclear weapons in Belarus with President Vladimir Putin and even started to prepare old Soviet launching pads for Topol-M mobile ground-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (President of Belarus, March 31, 2023; see EDM, April 4, 2023; T.me/modmilby, April 22, 2023). At the ABPA, Lukashenka and Belarusian Minister of Defense Viktor Khrenin confirmed the deployment of Russian TNWs in Belarus. Against the backdrop of Putin’s nuclear saber-rattling during his inauguration speech, the presence of Russian nukes on Belarusian territory has elevated fears of their possible use in Ukraine and/or the wider region (Kremlin.ru, May 7).

Africa’s Economic Development: Exploring Geopolitical Complexities And Contradictions – Analysis

Kester Kenn Klomegah

Within the context of rapidly geopolitical changes and the Russia-Ukraine crisis, African leaders have to absolutely rethink and take strategies to save their straddling economy. Both situations have created increasing problems across the world. The underlying causes are well-known and therefore allowing its possible effects to largely influence the already-stressed economic development processes will spell disaster and tragedy for Africa and its 1.4 billion population.

Several years have elapsed after the United Nations declared Africa’s political independence. Archival records show that Russia not only supported African countries in liberating themselves from the yoke of colonialism and attaining political independence but also facilitated in the UN General Assembly adopting in 1960 the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples. It was precisely May 25, now more 60 years ago, but still Africa is far away from attaining its economic freedom despite the huge natural and human resources there. The resources are untapped, development remains shabby while about 60% of the population impoverished.

Countdown Begins For Russia’s Ukraine Offensive – OpEd

M.K. Bhadrakumar

A study by the Harvard Business School in experimental psychology relating to people’s tendency to “shoot the messenger” came up with a startling finding that such human behaviour stems in part from a desire to make sense of chance processes.

Simply put, receiving bad news activates the desire to sense-make, and in turn, activating this desire enhances the tendency to dislike bearers of bad news.

In the current churning around the Ukraine war, French President Emmanuel Macron and the UK foreign Secretary David Cameron fit the description of messengers with malevolent motives — Macron keeps repeating his pet idea of combat deployment by European countries in Ukraine and Cameron arguing for the escalation of the war theatre to Russian territory.

Moscow disliked them both as bearers of bad news. But if further evidence was needed, the US national security advisor Jake Sullivan provided the “big picture” at the FT Weekend Festival in Washington last Saturday when he expressed the hope that Kiev would have the capacity to “hold the line” over the course of this year, and expects Ukrainian military to mount a new counteroffensive in 2025.

Netanyahu And Ultraconservatives Jeopardise Israeli Security – Analysis

James M. Dorsey

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has fractured a long-standing pillar of Israeli foreign policy that dictated it always needed to ensure the backing of the United States. Fixing the pillar may prove easier said than done.

US President Joe Biden’s insistence that US support for Israel is “ironclad,” despite the conditioning of arms sales, is rooted as much in the president’s deep-seated commitment to Israel as it is a reminder of the risk to Israel of surrendering a principle that enabled Israel to do what it wanted.

To be sure, past US presidents, including Ronald Reagan, have put the US-Israeli relationship on the line to pressure Israeli leaders.

Mr. Netanyahu’s defiance of US insistence that it refrains from launching a full-blown offensive in Gaza, saying that 76 years ago when Israel declared independence, “We were alone. We had no weapons, there was an arms embargo on Israel… Today, we are much stronger… If we have to stand alone, we will stand alone,” echoes his predecessor, Menahem Begin, Israel’s first right-wing prime minister.

US Expresses Confidence Ukraine Will Repel Any Fresh Russian Offensive

Washington says it expects Russia to intensify a new offensive in Ukraine but expressed confidence in Kyiv and doubted that Moscow will make major territorial gains.

“It is possible that Russia will make further advances in the coming weeks, but we do not anticipate any major breakthroughs, and over time, the influx of U.S. assistance will enable Ukraine to withstand these attacks over the course of 2024,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters in Washington on May 10.

His comments came hours after Russian troops attempted to open a new front by breaking through Ukrainian lines in the Kharkiv region, a move Kyiv said its forces repelled, though fighting was reported to be continuing.

Kirby also spoke after the White House announced that the United States is preparing a $400 million military aid package for Ukraine, as the country returns to a regular pace of supplying weapons to Kyiv after lawmakers passed a bill that includes $61 billion in assistance for Ukraine.

Europe’s Youth Are Fueling the Far Right

Paul Hockenos

Evidence is mounting that Europe’s far right will score better than ever before in the upcoming European Parliament elections on June 6 to June 9—and that the continent’s young voters will fuel its ascent. The young adults now gravitating to far right aren’t Nazis or xenophobic racists, but they may have a hand in an outcome that will, at the very least, shift the European Union’s priorities and accents to the right. A particularly solid right-wing finish—and cooperation across the hard-right spectrum—could rattle EU unity and throw a wrench into the bloc’s workings at a time when it is confronting acute crises on several fronts, not least the war in Ukraine.

How Joe Biden Sabotaged the ‘Rules-Based Order’

H.A. Hellyer

Just after Russia pushed further into Ukraine in February 2022, I met with a senior Singaporean diplomat. We were discussing other matters, but naturally, Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine came up, and I asked him about Singapore’s position.

Russia opens front on Kharkiv region in major new offensive

John Hill

Russian forces have launched a new assault in the northeastern Kharkiv region, Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed in a post on the social media platform X on 10 May 2024.

“Over the past day, the enemy used guided aerial bombs to carry out airstrikes in the Vovchansk direction,” a city that lies 45 miles, or 75 kilometres, north east of Kharkiv, much closer to the border with Russia.

“[At] the beginning of the night, the Russian occupiers increased the fire pressure on first line of our defence with the support of artillery.

“At approximately 5AM local time, there was an attempt by the enemy to break through our defence line using armoured vehicles,” the MoD reported. Although they confirmed that these attacks have been repelled while “battles of varying intensity continue.”

Army embarking on electronic warfare data pilot to help inform rapid reprogramming


The Army will be beginning an electronic warfare data pilot to determine what it needs to be able to rapidly reprogram systems on the battlefield.

Part of the effort stems from lessons learned during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“We’re learning that the EW landscape is changing everywhere between three weeks and three months, and so that we need to be more flexible in our approach … The battlefield is changing really, really rapidly,” Gen. Randy George, chief of staff of the Army, said during testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee in April.

As a result, the force must become more agile.

“This forces the Army to design for agility — EW payloads (techniques and software) must be dynamic and reprogrammable so they can be delivered from a variety of independent platforms” like drones, tactical vehicles and manpacks, among others, David May, a senior advisor at the Cyber Center of Excellence, said in response to questions from DefenseScoop. “Consequently, the Army is shifting its EW paradigm, moving away from inflexible, tightly coupled solutions and towards a more adaptive and responsive approach. This involves developing and integrating new technologies within an Army Reprogramming Enterprise.”

Ukraine and the Pity of War

Francis P. Sempa

During the debate over the most recent Ukraine aid bill that Congress passed, Biden administration officials, legislators, and many in the media proclaimed that this was a Churchillian moment for the United States. Rep. Michael McCaul, for example, repeatedly stated from the House floor and elsewhere, that how you voted on the aid bill determined whether you were Churchill or Chamberlain (referring to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, one of the architects of appeasement in the 1930s). The pro-Ukraine aid forces have invoked the “lessons of Munich” to justify deeper involvement by the United States and NATO in the Ukraine War, but they would be wise to consider that the path they are following might end in what the British historian Niall Ferguson called “the pity of war.”

Pro-Ukraine aid forces repeatedly compare Russian President Vladimir Putin to Hitler and Russian aggression in Ukraine to Hitler’s aggression in Czechoslovakia. Britain and France capitulated to Hitler at Munich, thereby dooming Czechoslovakia and setting the stage for the invasion of Poland and the beginning of the European phase of the Second World War. The pro-Ukraine aid forces claim that if the United States negotiates a ceasefire in Ukraine rather than helping Ukraine to defeat Russia and win the war, it will be another Munich moment--and the Baltic States and Poland will be the next victims of Putin’s aggression.

How to Win the New Great Game in Central Asia

Azeem Ibrahim

In the nineteenth and early twentieth century, during the “Great Game” between the Russian Empire and British Empires, Central Asia was divided into spheres of influence. Five of the modern “stans” were under St. Petersburg’s control. The Emirate (then Kingdom) of Afghanistan was neutral. Pakistan was then a series of provinces in British India.

The fall of the Soviet Union granted the five Central Asian States independence a little over thirty years ago. The region was largely ignored by the world’s great powers, even though its southern neighbor, Afghanistan, was the theatre of NATO’s twenty-year war.

However, geopolitics and geoeconomics have changed since then. The five countries have come of age, both domestically and regionally, working together to unleash the region’s potential as a key mineral and infrastructural hub for energy security and global trade. The region has close historical ties to Russia and is positioned along China’s Belt and Road. Still, it also offers significant opportunities for U.S. and European companies to access the key precious metals for the energy transition.

From terror to liberation: The strategic rebranding of Hamas


In his poignant address commemorating Holocaust remembrance, President Joe Biden attended the troubling resurgence of antisemitism, linking it directly to Hamas’s Oct. 7 assault on Israel. Drawing upon the solemn commitment encapsulated in “Never Again,” Biden expressed deep concern over the rapid erosion of the public’s memory, stating, “Here we are, not 75 years later but just seven and a half months later, and people are already forgetting. They’re already forgetting that Hamas unleashed this terror, that it was Hamas that brutalized Israelis, that it was Hamas who took and continues to hold hostages.”

Indeed, despite perpetrating one of history’s most documented massacres, Hamas appears conspicuously absent from current public discourse, and even its designation as a terrorist organization has increasingly come into question.

The dearth of discussion surrounding the group is evident in the rebranding of the conflict from the “Israel-Hamas War” to the “Israel-Gaza War” by most media outlets. Meanwhile, across college campuses nationwide, pro-Palestinian demonstrations often gloss over, rationalize and even justify Hamas violence.

Israel’s other war

Joshua Keating

If not for the ongoing carnage in Gaza, there’s a good chance the spiral of violence between Israel and the Lebanon-based military group Hezbollah would be the Middle Eastern conflict dominating the world’s attention right now. In the weeks leading up to the current Israeli offensive in Rafah, there was often more actual fighting happening on Israel’s northern border with Lebanon than in the south in Gaza.

The fighting has been happening since the day after Hamas’s October 7 attacks, when Hezbollah launched guided rocket strikes against Israel in what it called “solidarity with the victorious Palestinian resistance.” Hezbollah has continually fired rockets and drones into Israel and in return, the Israeli military has launched air and military strikes against the group’s bases in Lebanon in response. Hamas and Hezbollah are both Iran-backed, anti-Israel militant groups, though they differ significantly in ideology and operational approach.

In the first six months of the fighting, there were at least 4,400 combined strikes from both sides, according to the US-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). An estimated 250 Hezbollah members and 75 Lebanese civilians have been killed in the fighting, along with 20 Israelis — both civilians and soldiers. More than 60,000 residents of northern Israel have been displaced by the attacks, along with some 90,000 people in southern Lebanon.

Infrastructure Is Remaking Geopolitics

Mary Bridges

Falling water levels in Panama’s Gatún Lake. A cyberattack on a payment platform. An earthquake disrupting silicon-chip production in Taiwan. Elon Musk deciding which countries have access to the Internet. At first glance, these things have nothing in common other than their recent prominence in news headlines. But an invisible through line connects them: each one highlights modern society’s dependence on complex infrastructure to function. Disruptions in the Panama Canal can delay the delivery of critical shipments around the world. Computer failures can interrupt routine medical care provided by clinics across the United States. 

Biden’s Public Ultimatum to Bibi

Susan B. Glasser

It took seven months almost to the day, but Joe Biden appears to have, finally, reached a public moment of reckoning over Israel’s conduct of the war in Gaza. On Wednesday morning, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin confirmed that the Biden Administration had paused delivery of thirty-five hundred heavy bombs to Israel. That evening, the President himself explained why, admitting that “civilians have been killed in Gaza” as a result of American-supplied weapons and saying flatly that he could not accept them being used in a military offensive against Hamas in the densely populated city of Rafah, which Israel has threatened to carry out. Biden insisted that the U.S. would continue to help Israel secure itself from external threats, but he laid down what appeared to be an uncrossable line for the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. “If they go into Rafah,” the President told CNN’s Erin Burnett, “I’m not supplying the weapons.” His decision amounts to the most high-profile example in decades of a U.S. President publicly imposing such limits on American military assistance to Israel, and it came accompanied by a stark rebuke of how Israel has treated Palestinian civilians. “It’s just wrong,” Biden said.

Translation: the long Biden-Bibi bear hug is over. The President of the United States is now all but publicly daring the Prime Minister of Israel to defy him.

Is Russia jamming GPS in the Baltics?


Estonia has accused Russia of jamming GPS navigation devices in the airspace above the Baltic states, raising fears of potential aircraft disasters.

The incidents were part of an "ongoing pattern" of GPS interference in Europe, said New Scientist, but there are question marks over who is to blame and whether it is deliberate.

The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a network of satellites and other devices that are pivotal for aviation safety. But its signals are "vulnerable to blocking or distortion, creating problems for pilots and air traffic control dispatchers", said The Times.

AI Systems Are Already Skilled At Deceiving And Manipulating Humans

Many artificial intelligence (AI) systems have already learned how to deceive humans, even systems that have been trained to be helpful and honest. In a review article publishing in the journal Patterns on May 10, researchers describe the risks of deception by AI systems and call for governments to develop strong regulations to address this issue as soon as possible.

“AI developers do not have a confident understanding of what causes undesirable AI behaviors like deception,” says first author Peter S. Park, an AI existential safety postdoctoral fellow at MIT. “But generally speaking, we think AI deception arises because a deception-based strategy turned out to be the best way to perform well at the given AI’s training task. Deception helps them achieve their goals.”

Park and colleagues analyzed literature focusing on ways in which AI systems spread false information—through learned deception, in which they systematically learn to manipulate others.

‘TunnelVision’ Attack Leaves Nearly All VPNs Vulnerable to Spying


Researchers have devised an attack against nearly all virtual private network applications that forces them to send and receive some or all traffic outside of the encrypted tunnel designed to protect it from snooping or tampering.

TunnelVision, as the researchers have named their attack, largely negates the entire purpose and selling point of VPNs, which is to encapsulate incoming and outgoing Internet traffic in an encrypted tunnel and to cloak the user’s IP address. The researchers believe it affects all VPN applications when they’re connected to a hostile network and that there are no ways to prevent such attacks except when the user's VPN runs on Linux or Android. They also said their attack technique may have been possible since 2002 and may already have been discovered and used in the wild since then.