Letting an octogenarian bull wearing high heels loose in a china shop.


Like most people who watched the highly orchestrated psycho-drama of Nancy Pelosi and whether she’d touch down in Taiwan or not on her magical mystery tour of parts oriental, i wondered why risk a war with China by a needless visit that was obviously designed to both provoke China over an issue that had laid … Continue reading

The winners and losers after the sledgehammer strike.


In the aftermath of the sledgehammer strike, it’s worth trying to have an informed guess as to what the new world will look like after all the pieces fall back to the ground and begin to be reassembled into a different jigsaw puzzle by geo-political forces. Who will be the winners, who will be the … Continue reading

The Sledgehammer.


Over last weekend a conference called the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) took place. The chances are you might not even of heard it occurred but it did and what came out of it confirmed my worst fears of how dire a situation the US, EU and the West in general have managed to … Continue reading

Getting out of there while you’ve still got a shirt on your back.


A number of developments of late concerned with Russia’s “special military operation” have signalled a ground shift in the West’s whole approach to the thing. The first was various attempts by America to open some public channels of communication with the Russians. The Biden administration is massively concerned with PR and spin, but there’s no … Continue reading

Turning off the war


Of late you might have noticed the volume control knob of the anti-Russian hate propaganda machine in the media has been slowly turned down. An easy explanation for that is hate fatigue. A two minute hate anyone can handle but when it drags into three months of a non-stop barrage and you’re supposed to be … Continue reading

One foreign policy blunder being compounded by another.


There are times we’ve all met people in high authority who appear to be making moves you can’t quite understand, but usually that’s because they have access to information you don’t have or they’re executing a particularly Machiavellian plan. On the other hand, sometimes you realise in a blinding flash of insight into them that … Continue reading

Russia, America, China and the Ukraine.


At this moment in time, there are only three power blocks of any consequence in the world; China, Russia and America. China is walking a tightrope between allowing a limited form of capitalism to make it prosperous while at the same time keeping a strict Soviet style grip on its population. Russia is a populist … Continue reading

There are only three power blocks in the world – America.


In the previous two articles in the power blocks series, I discussed how the problem of an increasingly assertive Oligarchy turned out differently in China and Russia. The problem in both cases was that their own home-grown and foreign oligarchs wanted a bigger say in the actual running of the countries, if not to rule … Continue reading

There are only three power blocks in the world – China.


Taking them in a very particular order, I’ll start with China. At its inception it was modelled very much on Stalin’s Soviet Russia. All political enemies were either killed or ran for their lives, a harsh regime of unquestionable conformity was imposed, but the carrot of a glowing socialist future was always dangled before the … Continue reading

Trump’s foreign policy.


As a school kid, I discovered the game of chess and played it enthusiastically for a few years, to the extent of even buying a miniature set that when closed, fitted neatly into a blazer pocket. On days when kicking a tennis ball around the playground didn’t appeal, I’d play a game with a friend … Continue reading

Some geopolitical thoughts on what to watch for in 2019.


Foreword. From a very top slice analysis, there are four significant power blocks around the globe struggling for control of the next fifty or a hundred years of the world’s history. What follows is highly speculative, but sometimes when you play the what if game, some of the at face value options you might initially … Continue reading

The blue remembered hills.


It’s half ten of a Sunday evening. We’re in the living room and my wife and I are looking forward to a bit of vegging out on the couch and watching the next episode of a TV series we both like. Her head is atop a pillow which rests on my lap and my arm … Continue reading

Mid-term blues.


The mid-term elections in America are over and the big winner is the Republican party who’ve taken control of both houses of congress. There are a number of conclusions to be drawn from the results. The big one is that once you get past the media’s continuing love affair with the concept of a Barack Obama, … Continue reading

COP19 – the grubby truth behind it all.


It must have been a weekend because I was about. The kids rushed in and I had the “Dad, Dad, he’s hurt” plea for help and their miniature hands plucking at me like a flock of birds pecking and pulling me urgently out of the house sideways. They do that, you know it’s important because … Continue reading

Legislation by regulation.


What is now called the European Union (EU), grew out of the aftermath of WWII, which had devastated both the economies and infrastructures of most countries in Europe. It was really the product of several treaties but the first big one was the 1957 treaty of Rome, which created a common market amongst its members, … Continue reading

The Durban debacle awaits …


Here we go again, another climate clambake attracting attendees from all over the world. They’ll be the usual assortment of politicians, government civil servants, Media, NGOs, activists and fruit loops determined to save the earth from global warming. Nothing changes. In terms of the basic political objectives, nothing much either has changed since Cancun. The developing … Continue reading

Cancun and the Chinese perspective on it


Cancun will be a very low-key affair. The attendees going there expect to achieve exactly nothing. I’ll repeat that; exactly nothing. At Copenhagen the Chinese, under extreme and unremitting pressure, agreed to nothing. The Chinese signed nothing, not even the closing statement. The Chinese ‘noted’ that some statement had been made. That’s it. That was … Continue reading