Horizon Scanning for National Security No90: Some Light within Darkness – For a change, let us focus on the positive (within the multiple remaining and rising challenges): climate change and environmental factors emerge this week as being increasingly integrated within our understanding of the complex dynamics at work in conflicts and more broadly threats or dangers to national security. Is the painting depicted scarier? Certainly, but understanding is also a crucial step towards solving properly problems… hopefully.
Horizon Scanning for National security No89 – Look East: Indicators are turning red! The possibility of war – between China and Japan… and the US (security treaties can also have an escalating effect) and ? – is now very much on the agenda, despite all wishful thinking and previous disbelief. The dire financial situation of Japan, which everyone tries so hard to ignore, while US potential sequestration shockwaves nears and Europe polarizes, are not the most stabilizing context and factors. We had a window of opportunity, at the beginning of February, it closed. Shall we see another opening up of “the funnel of choices” (Nye, 1993: 68-69)?
Horizon Scanning for National Security No85 – Window of opportunity, rising tensions and creeping new order(s)? The political situation in Greece escalates, as in the MENA regions. Turkey’s interest in the SCO is particularly indicative. Positively, on China/Japan, a window of opportunity seems to be opening, yet on a backdrop of high tension, including considering the Japanese upcoming revision of wartime history… meanwhile a potential terrible new way to understand resilience regarding climate change would be emerging.
Horizon Scanning for National Security No84 – Wars in a revised socio-economic order – The gathered signals seem to point (unsurprisingly) towards the following questions: Will there be a war between China and Japan? Will Israel attack Iran? Will a new – or rather old (similar to what existed before the birth of the Soviet Union)- economy with entrenched inequalities and the disappearance of a large middle class settles in? Shall Greece be the first to violently rebel against it?
Horizon Scanning for National Security No83: Towards a multiplication of increasingly fragile states? This is what could mean the report on the state of infrastructures in the U.S. (and probably other so called rich countries?). It is a crucial weak signal that could trump all others: imagine weak, increasingly fragile “rich countries” on the backdrop of all the other tensions and threats…
Horizon Scanning for National Security – No82 – On relativity: If, for example, we believe that Greece will be in the G20 in 7 years or that we are at the end of the economic crisis, notably in Europe, that “new oil” developments and use of coal are very positive, then, Australia’s heat index or European unemployment figures or Basel’s new liquidity rule might be (only “might” of course) weak signals that something is amiss… if we don’t believe the initial statements then those indications are strong signals of escalation, among so many others.