US Policy Changes Vol.93 (Foreign Policy Vol.10)


Taking History as a Mirror (w PDF; June 2018) | Neil Thomas @BelferCenter


Trump’s focus on China trade: Right target, wrong approach (06/14/2018) | Ryan Hass @BelferCenter


Ukraine fears falling victim to Trump-Putin ‘grand bargain’ (11/11/2016) | Neil Buckley and Roman Olearchyk @FT


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.40


https://twitter.com/The_GA/status/956911551801421824


https://twitter.com/merrionstreet/status/964507886083768320


Ireland Vol.27 (St. Patrick’s Day, et al. – universities/institutes of technology, counties/cities, chambers, airports, et al.)

Carlow


Clare


Cork


https://twitter.com/UCC/status/974663665503948800


Donegal


Galway


Limerick


https://twitter.com/UL/status/974720446955483138


Louth


Waterford


Westmeath


https://twitter.com/AthloneIT/status/974977569161469952
County Dublin
Fingal


https://twitter.com/Fingalcoco/status/975009841008861185


South Dublin


Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown


City of Dublin


https://twitter.com/DublinAirport/status/974631661114744832


Ireland Vol.25 (St. Patrick’s Day 2018)


https://twitter.com/dfatirl/status/973619007839506432


Watch the 2018 St. Patrick’s Day parade in Boston – See what South Boston looks like during this year’s event. (w Video; 03/18/2018) | Kevin Slane @BostonDotCom
PHOTOS: Chicago goes green for St. Patrick’s Day 2018 (w Video & Photos; 03/18/2018) | @Suntimes
@StPatsParadeNYC


https://twitter.com/FOXLA/status/975054159148797952


https://twitter.com/AmbAnnaBrandt/status/974277210856148994


https://twitter.com/IrlEmbVienna/status/974616271869370369


https://twitter.com/merrionstreet/status/974002704279330816


Austria Vol.2 (Legislative Election & Coalition 2017)


Factbox: Key figures in Austria’s new coalition government (16/12/2017) | @reuters
SEBASTIAN KURZ (OVP), CHANCELLOR; HEINZ-CHRISTIAN STRACHE (FPO), VICE-CHANCELLOR; KARIN KNEISSL (FPO REPRESENTATIVE), FOREIGN MINISTRY; HERBERT KICKL (FPO), INTERIOR MINISTRY; MARIO KUNASEK (FPO), DEFENSE MINISTRY; HARTWIG LOEGER (OVP), FINANCE MINISTRY; GERNOT BLUEMEL (OVP), CHANCELLERY MINISTRY
MAKING ENEMIES: THE SILBERSTEIN AFFAIR AND THE AUSTRIAN ELECTION (01/15/2018) | Jesus Olivares Guerrero @OxPol
Coalition @TheLocalAustria
Austria holds watershed election marked by migrant crisis (15/10/2017) | @BBC
Republic of Austria (UN, World Bank)
Capital: Vienna
Population: 8.7 million
Area: 83,871 sq km (32,383 sq miles)
Major language: German
Major religion: Christianity
Life expectancy: 80 years (men), 84 years (women)
Currency: euro
Austrian far-right joins coalition led by PM Sebastian Kurz (16/12/2017) | @BBC
Sebastian Kurz gets approval for coalition with Austrian far right: Freedom Party returns to power after 12 years. (12/16/2017) | NICHOLAS VINOCUR @POLITICOEurope
New coalition government shifts Austria to the right: Anti-immigration Freedom Party will take control of much of country’s security apparatus (12/16/2017) | @reuters @CBC
Austria’s new coalition government rules out EU referendum (12/16/2017) | @AFP @DailySabah
Austrian populist coalition deal a warning sign for other EU states (12/17/2017) | Derek Scally @IrishTimes
Austria’s new coalition gets started (PDF; 12/18/2017) | @ING_news
Why Austria’s Anti-Immigrant Experiment Is Worth Watching: The new ruling coalition has set out draconian immigration controls that every populist party dreams of implementing. (12/18/2017) | Leonid Bershidsky @bpolitics
Austria’s Coalition Government Includes Party Linked To Ex-Nazis (12/18/2017) | SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON @NPR
Austrian far-right party strikes coalition deal, enters government (12/18/2017) | SHADIA NASRALLA & FRANCOIS MURPHY @globeandmail
Theresa May congratulates new Austria leader amid huge protest over coalition (12/18/2017) | @AOLNews
Austrian Coalition Puts Europe’s Human Rights Values to the Test: Coalition Has Worrying Policies on Immigration, Asylum, and ‘Political Islam’ (12/20/2017) | Kartik Raj @hrw
The Far Right Is Now in Power in Austria: The new governing coalition includes the Freedom Party, which has deep roots in the country’s Nazi past. (12/29/2017) | Jordan Stancil @thenation
The Austrian Anti-Social Coalition (12/31/2017) | Joachim Becker @LeftEast1
A Populist Victory in Austria: The Freedom Party Enters Government (12/28?2017) | Reinhard Heinisch @ForeignAffairs


@pollofpolls_EU for Austria
OVP
FPO
How to watch the Austrian election like a pro: @POLITICO’s guide to keeping on top of all the Austrian action as the far-right FPO looks set to enter government. (10/14/2017) | EMMA ANDERSON & JUDITH MISCHKE
Austria’s Snap Election and the End of the Grand Coalition (10/14/2017) | Lindsay Mackenzie @QuilletteM
Results of Austrian Parliamentary Election 2017 (10/15/2017) | @AUSTRIANUSA
Austria election results: Far-right set to enter government as conservatives top poll: Austria seems to have elected its youngest ever head of government (15/10/2017) | Jon Stone, Samuel Osborne @Independent
Austrian election results: Conservative Sebastian Kurz on course to become Europe’s youngest leader (10/15/2017) | Justin Huggler & Balazs Cseko @Telegraph
AS IT HAPPENED: ‘Whizz-kid’ Kurz’s OVP clearly wins Austrian election, as voters turn right (15/10/2017) | @thelocalaustria
Austria moves to right as anti-immigration star seals election win: Kurz claims credit for closing Balkan migrant trail in 2016 that saw hundreds of thousands of migrants trek into Western Europe (15/10/2017) | @MiddleEastEye
Austria Election: Center-Right Party Head Likely Next Prime Minister (10/15/2017) | SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON @NPR
Young party leader declares victory in Austria election, meaning a turn to the right (10/15/2017) | Maximilian Mayerhofer & Aamer Madhani @USAToday
Austrian Vote Paves Way for Nationalist Party to Enter Government (10/15/2017) | Boris Groendahl & Jonathan Tirone @bpolitics
Austria election: Europe reacts to Sebastian Kurz victory – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she was hoping for close cooperation in Europe with Sebastian Kurz, who led his conservative party to election victory in Austria. DW has reaction from Berlin and beyond. (16/10/2017) | @dwnews
Meet the 31-year-old conservative poised to become Austria’s new chancellor: Sebastian Kurz reshaped a traditional political party to drive the Austrian elections. (10/16/2017) | Sarah Wildman @vox
Austria election RESULTS: Eurosceptic Sebastian Kurz declares VICTORY in nightmare for EU (16/10/2017) | REBECCA PERRING & ALIX CULBERTSON @Daily_Express
Austria’s election: Four things to know about the result (16/10/2017) | Manes Weisskircher & Matthew E. Bergman @LSEEUROPP
The Guardian view on the Austrian elections: an old threat in a new guise (16/10/2017) | @guardian
Why Austria’s Election Should Worry Liberals (10/16/2017) | Jonah Shepp @nymag
EU holds breath after Austrian vote (10/16/2017) | Georgi Gotev @euractiv
World’s youngest leader: Sebastian Kurz, 31, declares victory in Austria election (16/10/2017) | Shadia Nasralla & Kirsti Knolle @smh
Orban, Szijjarto applaud right-wing victory in Austrian parliamentary election (10/16/2017) | Justin Spike @BudapestBeacon
The Austrian elections should terrify Europeans (10/17/2017) | Paul Hockenos @CNN
Austria’s march to the right got a boost from fake Facebook content (10/17/2017) | Hanna Kozlowska @qz
How the Result of the Austrian Election Will Affect My Life as a Refugee: The Freedom Party’s motto is “Austrians deserve fairness,” but its notion of fairness doesn’t extend to people like me. (10/19/2017) | Zakarya Ibrahem @vicenews
Austrian election proves right-wing populism is new normal in Europe (10/22/2017) | ANNA GRZYMALA BUSSE @TheHill
Austria and Czech elections will change Visegrad dynamics (24/10/2017) | WOJCIECH PRZYBYLSKI @euobs
The Austrian election showed populists yet another path to power (25/10/2017) | MARTIN EIERMANN @NewStatesman
The Battle for Austria’s Right Is a Harbinger for the Rest of Europe: In Vienna, the center-right and populist right are vying for power. All of Europe is watching. (11/01/2017) | PETER ROUGH @ForeignPolicy
Austria’s Prospective Ruling Parties Agree on Budget Discipline, Cutbacks for Migrants (11/03/2017) | @reuters @VOANews
The Meteoric Rise of Sebastian Kurz: Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz could become his country’s next chancellor on Sunday. The politician is conservative and vain, but also adroit. What would the 31-year-old’s election mean for the country? (13/10/2017) | Walter Mayr @Spiegel
Now it’s Austria’s Turn (11/10/2017) | FABIO WOLKENSTEIN @myfairobserver
A few thoughts on the Austrian election: Why the rightwing Freedom party is so successfull and what the likely outcome will mean for Austria and Europe. (10/13/2017) | Felix Simon @medium
Austria’s snap election: Everything you need to know: With a young front runner and an anti-immigration party gaining traction, the election could send shockwaves through Europe. (15/10/2017) | Ceren Senkul @SkyNews
ElectionGuide – Republic of Austria | IFES
Elections in Austria | @OSCE
Austrian parliamentary election (10/15/2017) | @reuters
Austrian president to insist on pro-EU government after election (09/12/2017) | @reuters @businessinsider
How the Populist Right Is Redrawing the Map of Europe (12/11/2017) | Andre Tartar @bpolitics


UK Vol.113 (Post-EUref #Brexit Vol.37)


https://twitter.com/WeyandSabine/status/968817974906970112


https://twitter.com/WISERDNews/status/966995819898515456


https://twitter.com/GenBrexit/status/964990927063388160


US Policy Changes Vol.80 (Middle East Vol.6)

Great stuff!


Are Oil Prices Heading for Another Spike? (01/31/2018) | Carmen Reinhart, Vincent Reinhart @ProSyn @BelferCenter
OPEC’s Misleading Narrative About World Oil Supply (w PDF; March 2017) | Leonardo Maugeri @BelferCenter
Inside the Middle East Q&A: Ali Ahmad on Nuclear Power and Energy in the Middle East (Podcast; 02/20/2018) | @BelferCenter
A Lasting Defeat: The Campaign to Destroy ISIS (October 2017) | Ash Carter @BelferCenter
The Syrian crisis: A reckoning and a road map (09/12/2017) | Itamar Rabinovich @BrookingsInst
Don’t underestimate Kurdistan’s resilience (09/22/2017) | Ranj Alaaldin @BrookingsInst
A political surge is what’s needed in Afghanistan (05/30/2017) | Douglas Lute @thehill
Is it time for India to play a role in Israeli-Palestinian peace? (02/22/2018) | Kadira Pethiyagoda @BrookingInst
Who is responsible for solving Gaza’s massive electricity crisis? (02/05/2018) | Diana B. Greenwald @washingtonpost
Iran and Israel face off in Syria, as if it wasn’t complicated enough (02/13/2018) | Dror Michman and Yael Mizrahi-Arnaud @Brookingsinst
A Poorly Negotiated Saudi Nuclear Deal Could Damage Future Regional Relationships (02/05/2018) | Henry Sokolski, William H. Tobey @TheNatlInterest
Saudi Reforms Get a Boost From Google (02/04/2018) | Karen Elliott House @WSJ
Trump, Jerusalem, and a dispensable Arab region (12/06/2017) | Rami G. Khouri @agenceglobal
Jerusalem: securing spaces in holy places (07/31/2017) | Beverley Milton-Edwards @BrookingsInst
Jerusalem: After 30 years of hope and failure, what’s next for Israel/Palestine? (12/13/2017) | Hady Amr @BrookingsInst
Has Israel Grown Too Dependent on the United States? (02/05/2018) | Chuck Freilich @mosaicmag
How much does BDS threaten Israel’s economy? (01/26/2018) | Dany Bahar and Natan Sachs @BrookingsInst
The two things that will determine Netanyahu’s fate (02/15/2018) | Natan Sachs @BrookingsInst
Trump Wants to Attack North Korea? He Should Learn from Israel First (02/01/2018) | David Ignatius @washingtonpost
Cooperation in the Libya WMD Disarmament Case (PDF) | William Tobey
Verifying the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons and Providing Assurance against Breakout (w PDF; February 2018) | John Carlson @BelferCenter
The World Doesn’t Need Any More Nuclear Strategies (02/06/2018) | Stephen M. Walt @ForeignPolicy


Middle East Vol.3 (Iran Vol.3 – Nuclear Agreement Vol.3)

Ernest J. Moniz Addresses Global Nuclear Risks (Speech; 01/11/2018)
Information Note on EU sanctions to be lifted under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) (PDF; 23/01/2016)
Annex II: Sanctions-related commitments | @StateDept


Iran: One year since sanctions relief (17/01/2017) | Henry Smith @Control_Risks
Iran: Flexibility in contract negotiations to arise out of uneven enforcement of local content regulations (10/05/2017) | Henry Smith @Control_Risks


Middle East Vol.2 (Iran Vol.2 – Nuclear Agreement Vol.2)

Why the Iran protests matter (Voice; 01/02/2018) | Suzanne Maloney @BrookingsFP
Iran nuclear deal: Key details (13/10/2017) | @BBC
Iran Nuclear Agreement (PDF; 09/15/2017) | Kenneth Katzman & Paul K. Kerr @CRS4Congress
Full text of the Iran nuclear deal (14/07/2015) | @washingtonpost
Iran’s Nuclear Ambitions and Political Theory (06/03/2012) | Allison Kushner @FPA_ORG
HARVARD POLL ON RENEGOTIATING IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL USED “BLATANTLY BIASED QUESTION” (10/28/2017) | Murtaza Hussain @theintercept
Saving the Iran Nuclear Deal, Despite Trump’s Decertification (13/10/2017) | @CrisisGroup
The Real Promise of the US-Iran Agreement – Yes, it will prevent Iran from developing nukes. But it could also transform the Middle East, bringing  order and peace to a region falling into chaos. (07/16/2015) | @thenation
Proxy War Over Iran Nuclear Deal Divides U.S., Europe at UN (10/12/2017) | Kambiz Foroohar @bpolitics
The Iran Nuclear Deal – A Simple Guide (03/31/2015) | @nytimes
Trade – Iran | @EU_Commission


https://twitter.com/CFR_org/status/952571019239149568


Middle East Vol.1 (Iran Vol.1 – Nuclear Agreement Vol.1)


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.30


US Policy Changes Vol.74 (National Security Strategy)

The below excerpt of National Security Strategy of the United States of America DECEMBER 2017 (PDF) is on our own.

The American people elected me to make America great again. …
During my first year in office, you have witnessed my America First foreign policy in action. …
The United States faces an extraordinarily dangerous world, filled with a wide range of threats that have intensified in recent years. …
We are rallying the world against the rogue regime in North Korea and confronting the danger posed by the dictatorship in Iran, which those determined to pursue a flawed nuclear deal had neglected. …
At home, we have restored confidence in America’s purpose. …
The whole world is lifted by America’s renewal and the reemergence of American leadership. …

pp.1-4 INTRODUCTION
… Putting America first is the duty of our government and the foundation for U.S. leadership in the world.
A strong America is in the vital interests of not only the American people, but also those around the world who want to partner with the United States in pursuit of shared interests, values, and aspirations.
… Liberty and independence have given us the flourishing society Americans enjoy today-a vibrant and confident Nation, welcoming of disagreement and differences, but united by the bonds of history, culture, beliefs, and principles that define who we are.
… American political, business, and military leaders worked together with their counterparts in Europe and Asia to shape the post-war order through the United Nations, the Marshall Plan, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and other institutions designed to advance our shared interests of security, freedom, and peace. …
A Competitive World
… China and Russia challenge American power, influence, and interests, attempting to erode American security and prosperity. …
…jihadist terrorists such as ISIS and al-Qa’ida continue to spread a barbaric ideology that calls for the violent destruction of governments and innocents they consider to be apostates. …
… North Korea-a country that starves its own people-has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons that could threaten our homeland. …
An America First National Security Strategy
First, our fundamental responsibility is to protect the American people, the homeland, and the American way of life.
Second, we will promote American prosperity. …
Third, we will preserve peace through strength by rebuilding our military so that it remains preeminent, deters our adversaries, and if necessary, is able to fight and win. …
Fourth, we will advance American influence because a world that supports American interests and reflects our values makes America more secure and prosperous. …

pp.7-14 PILLAR I: PROTECT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, THE HOMELAND, AND THE AMERICAN WAY OF LIFE (“July 2017”)
… North Korea seeks the capability to kill millions of Americans with nuclear weapons. … Non-state actors undermine social order through drug and human trafficking networks…
Secure U.S. Borders and Territory
Defend Against Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)
…deploying a layered missile defense system focused on North Korea and Iran to defend… Enhanced missile defense is not intended to undermine strategic stability or disrupt longstanding strategic relationships with Russia or China. …
Combat Biothreats and Pandemics
Strengthen Border Control and Immigration Policy
Pursue Threats to Their Source
Defeat Jihadist Terrorists
Dismantle Transnational Criminal Organizations
Keep America Safe in the Cyber Era
…assess risk across six key areas: national security, energy and power, banking and finance, health and safety, communications, and transportation. …
Promote American Resilience

pp.17-23 PILLAR II: PROMOTE AMERICAN PROSPERITY (“November 2017”)
… Working with our allies and partners, the United States led the creation of a group of financial institutions and other economic forums that established equitable rules and built instruments to stabilize the international economy and remove the points of friction that had contributed to two world wars. …
… Experience shows that these countries distorted and undermined key economic institutions without undertaking significant reform of their economies or politics. They espouse free trade rhetoric and exploit its benefits, but only adhere selectively to the rules and agreements. …
Rejuvenate the Domestic Economy
… Departments and agencies will eliminate unnecessary regulations that stifle growth, drive up costs for American businesses, impede research and development, discourage hiring, and incentivize domestic businesses to move overseas. …
… Federal, state, and local governments will work together with private industry to improve our airports, seaports and waterways, roads and railways, transit systems, and telecommunications. …
Promote Free, Fair, and Reciprocal Economic Relationships
…will pursue bilateral trade and investment agreements with countries that commit to fair and reciprocal trade and will modernize existing agreements to ensure they are consistent with those principles. …
Lead in Research, Technology, Invention, and Innovation
… The Department of Defense and other agencies will establish strategic partnerships with U.S. companies to help align private sector R&D resources to priority national security applications. …
Promote and Protect the U.S. National Security Innovation Base
…will reduce the illicit appropriation of U.S. public and private sector technology and technical knowledge by hostile foreign competitors. …
…will review visa procedures to reduce economic theft by non-traditional intelligence collectors. …
Embrace Energy Dominance
…will streamline the Federal regulatory approval processes for energy infrastructure, from pipeline and export terminals to container shipments and gathering lines, while also ensuring responsible environmental stewardship.

pp.25-35 PILLAR III: PRESERVE PEACE THROUGH STRENGTH (“DECEMBER 2017”)
… Three main sets of challengers-the revisionist powers of China and Russia, the rogue states of Iran and North Korea, and transnational threat organizations, particularly jihadist terrorist groups-are actively competing against the United States and our allies and partners. …
… China and Russia want to shape a world antithetical to U.S. values and interests. China seeks to displace the United States in the Indo-Pacific region, expand the reaches of its state-driven economic model, and reorder the region in its favor. Russia seeks to restore its great power status and establish spheres of influence near its borders. The intentions of both nations are not necessarily fixed. …
For decades, U.S. policy was rooted in the belief that support for China’s rise and for its integration into the post-war international order would liberalize China. Contrary to our hopes, China expanded its power at the expense of the sovereignty of others. China gathers and exploits data on an unrivaled scale and spreads features of its authoritarian system, including corruption and the use of surveillance. It is building the most capable and well-funded military in the world, after our own. Its nuclear arsenal is growing and diversifying. Part of China’s military modernization and economic expansion is due to its access to the U.S. innovation economy, including America’s world-class universities.
Russia aims to weaken U.S. influence in the world and divide us from our allies and partners. …
Renew America’s Competitive Advantages
Renew Capabilities
Military
Defense Industrial Base
…will work with industry partners to strengthen U.S. competitiveness in key technologies and manufacturing capabilities. …
Nuclear Forces
Space
… America’s newly re-established National Space Council, chaired by the Vice President, will review America’s long-range space goals and develop a strategy that integrates all space sectors to support innovation and American leadership in space.
Cyberspace
Intelligence
… To prevent the theft of sensitive and proprietary information and maintain supply chain integrity, the United States must increase our understanding of the economic policy priorities of our adversaries and improve our ability to detect and defeat their attempts to commit economic espionage. …
Diplomacy and Statecraft
Competitive Diplomacy
… Diplomacy is indispensable to identify and implement solutions to conflicts in unstable regions of the world short of military involvement. It helps to galvanize allies for action and marshal the collective resources of like-minded nations and organizations to address shared problems. Authoritarian states are eager to replace the United States where the United States withdraws our diplomats and closes our outposts. …
… Diplomats must identify opportunities for commerce and cooperation, and facilitate the cultural, educational, and people-to-people exchanges that create the networks of current and future political, civil society, and educational leaders who will extend a free and prosperous world.
Tools of Economic Diplomacy
… Economic tools?including sanctions, anti-money-laundering and anti-corruption measures, and enforcement actions?can be important parts of broader strategies to deter, coerce, and constrain adversaries. …
Information Statecraft
… China, for example, combines data and the use of AI to rate the loyal of its citizens to the state and uses these ratings to determine jobs and more. Jihadist…
Russia uses information operations as part of its offensive cyber efforts to influence public opinion across the globe. …
… Local voices are most compelling and effective in ideological competitions. We must amplify credible voices and partner with them to advance alternatives to violent and hateful messages. …

pp.37-42 PILLAR IV: ADVANCE AMERICAN INFLUENCE (“JULY 2017″)
… During the Cold War, a totalitarian threat from the Soviet Union motivated the free world to create coalitions in defense of liberty. Today’s challenges to free societies are just as serious, but more diverse. …
… The United States offers partnership to those who share our aspirations for freedom and prosperity. We lead by example. “The world has its eye upon America,” Alexander Hamilton once observed. “The noble struggle we have made in the cause of liberty, has occasioned a kind of revolution in human sentiment. …
Encourage Aspiring Partners
… China and Russia target their investments in the developing world to expand influence and gain competitive advantages against the United States. China is investing billions of dollars in infrastructure across the globe. Russia, too, projects its influence economically, through the control of key energy and other infrastructure throughout parts of Europe and Central Asia. …
… The United States will promote a development model that partners with countries that want progress, consistent with their culture, based on free market principles, fair and reciprocal trade, private sector activity, and rule of law. The United States will shift away from a reliance on assistance based on grants to approaches that attract private capital and catalyze private sector activity. …
Achieve Better Outcomes in Multilateral Forums
… Authoritarian actors have long recognized the power of multilateral bodies and have used them to advance their interests and limit the freedom of their own citizens. If the United States cedes leadership of these bodies to adversaries, opportunities to shape developments that are positive for the United States will be lost. All institutions are not equal, however. …
… The United Nations can help contribute to solving many of the complex problems in the world, but it must be reformed and recommit to its founding principles. We will require accountability and emphasize shared responsibility among members. If the United States is asked to provide a disproportionate level of support for an institution, we will expect a commensurate degree of influence over the direction and efforts of that institution. …
…  The United States will promote the free flow of data and protect its interests through active engagement in key organizations, such as the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), the UN, and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).
Champion American Values
… America’s core principles, enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, are secured by the Bill of Rights, which proclaims our respect for fundamental individual liberties beginning with the freedoms of religion, speech, the press, and assembly. Liberty, free enterprise, equal justice under the law, and the dignity of every human life are central to who we are as a people. …
… We support, with our words and actions, those who live under oppressive regimes and who seek freedom, individual dignity, and the rule of law. We are under no obligation to offer the benefits of our free and prosperous community to repressive regimes and human rights abusers. We may use diplomacy, sanctions, and other tools to isolate states and leaders who threaten our interests and whose actions run contrary to our values. …

pp.45-53 THE STRATEGY IN A REGIONAL CONTEXT
Indo-Pacific
… Although the United States seeks to continue to cooperate with China… Its efforts to build and militarize outposts in the South China Sea endanger the free flow of trade, threaten the sovereignty of other nations, and undermine regional stability. China has mounted a rapid military modernization campaign designed to limit U.S. access to the region…
… Our alliance and friendship with South Korea, forged by the trials of history, is stronger than ever. We welcome and support the strong leadership role of our critical ally, Japan. Australia has fought alongside us in every significant conflict since World War I… New Zealand is a key U.S. partner contributing to peace and security across the region. We welcome India’s emergence as a leading global power and stronger strategic and defense partner. We will seek to increase quadrilateral cooperation with Japan, Australia, and India.
In Southeast Asia, the Philippines and Thailand remain important allies and markets for Americans. Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore are growing security and economic partners of the United States. …
… We will work with allies and partners to achieve complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula and preserve the non-proliferation regime in Northeast Asia.
…we will cooperate on missile defense with Japan and South Korea to move toward an area defense capability. We remain ready to respond with overwhelming force to North Korean aggression and will improve options to compel denuclearization of the peninsula. We will improve law enforcement, defense, and intelligence cooperation with Southeast Asian partners to address the growing terrorist threat. We will maintain our strong ties with Taiwan in accordance with our “One China” policy…
Europe
… Russia is using subversive measures to weaken the credibility of America’s commitment to Europe, undermine transatlantic unity, and weaken European institutions and governments. With its invasions of Georgia and Ukraine…
China is gaining a strategic foothold in Europe by expanding its unfair trade practices and investing in key industries, sensitive technologies, and infrastructure. Europe also faces immediate threats from violent Islamist extremists. Attacks by ISIS and other jihadist…
… We will encourage European foreign direct investment in the United States to create jobs. We will work with our allies and partners to diversify European energy sources to ensure the energy security of European countries. We will work with our partners to contest China’s unfair trade and economic practices and restrict its acquisition of sensitive technologies.
… We expect our European allies to increase defense spending to 2 percent of gross domestic product by 2024, with 20 percent of this spending devoted to increasing military capabilities. …
Middle East
… For generations the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has been understood as the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region. Today, the threats from jihadist terrorist organizations and the threat from Iran are creating the realization that Israel is not the cause of the region’s problems. States have increasingly found common interests with Israel in confronting common threats. …
… We remain committed to helping our partners achieve a stable and prosperous region, including through a strong and integrated Gulf Cooperation Council. We will strengthen our long-term strategic partnership with Iraq as an independent state. We will seek a settlement to the Syrian civil war that sets the conditions for refugees to return home and rebuild their lives in safety. … We remain committed to helping facilitate a comprehensive peace agreement that is acceptable to both Israelis and Palestinians. …
South and Central Asia
… We will help South Asian nations maintain their sovereign as China increases its influence in the region. …
Western Hemisphere
Stable, friendly, and prosperous states in the Western Hemisphere enhance our security and benefit our economy. Democratic states connected by shared values and economic interests will reduce the violence, drug trafficking, and illegal immigration that threaten our common security…
… Transnational criminal organizations—including gangs and cartels—perpetuate violence and corruption, and threaten the stability of Central American states including Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. In Venezuela and Cuba, governments cling to anachronistic leftist authoritarian models that continue to fail their people. Competitors have found operating space in the hemisphere.
China seeks to pull the region into its orbit through state-led investments and loans. Russia continues its failed politics of the Cold War by bolstering its radical Cuban allies as Cuba continues to repress its citizens. Both China and Russia support the dictatorship in Venezuela and are seeking to expand military linkages and arms sales across the region. …
Africa
… China is expanding its economic and military presence in Africa, growing from a small investor in the continent two decades ago into Africa’s largest trading partner today. Some Chinese practices undermine Africa’s long-term development by corrupting elites, dominating extractive industries, and locking countries into unsustainable and opaque debts and commitments. …
… We will offer American goods and services, both because it is profitable for us and because it serves as an alternative to China’s often extractive economic footprint on the continent. …

p.55 CONCLUSION
… It is realist because it acknowledges the central role of power in international politics, affirms that sovereign states are the best hope for a peaceful world, and clearly defines our national interests. It is principled because it is grounded in the knowledge that advancing American principles spreads peace and prosperity around the globe. We are guided by our values and disciplined by our interests. …


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.28

Here are tweets of great stuff retweeted by @_WorldSolutions.


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.26

Here are tweets of great stuff retweeted by @_WorldSolutions.


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.25

Here are tweets of great stuff retweeted by @_WorldSolutions.


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.24

Here are tweets of great stuff retweeted by @_WorldSolutions.


UK Vol.106 (Post-EUref #Brexit Vol.31)


https://twitter.com/GenBrexit/status/937460498177691648


US Policy Changes Vol.67 (US law professors Vol.3)

Here is a part of U.S. law schools’ recent tweets on legal and political issues in which their professors are featured, quoted, et al. (mainly those in November 2017). Great stuff!
[We don’t have affiliations with these schools or professors.]


https://twitter.com/PennLaw/status/930062946159521796
https://twitter.com/PennLaw/status/929508794933088258
https://twitter.com/PennLaw/status/929195732221022208
https://twitter.com/PennLaw/status/928631766050656256
https://twitter.com/PennLaw/status/928280695633514497


US Policy Changes Vol.66 (US law professors Vol.2)

Here is a part of U.S. law schools’ recent tweets on legal and political issues in which their professors are featured, quoted, et al. (mainly those in November 2017). Great stuff!
[We don’t have affiliations with these schools or professors.]


UK Vol.99 (Northern Ireland Vol.4)

Antrim and Newtownabbey


cf.
COUNTY ANTRIM and BELFAST – Mineral Resource Map of Northern Ireland (PDF) | @BritGeoSurvey @daera_ni @Economy_NI

Belfast


niBelfast1niBelfast3
cf.
Department for the Economy @nidirect
Belfast strongest UK city for economic growth in 2015 (15/12/2016) | John Campbell @BBC
Belfast Tourism continues to drive the NI visitor economy (07/07/2017) | @VisitBelfastOrg
Boeing/Bombardier trade war could have ramifications for Belfast economy (w Video; 09/27/2017) | @globalnews
Northern Ireland on target for 80,000 Knowledge Economy jobs by 2030 | @CatalystIncHQ
A new kind of trouble – With the guns mostly silent, Ulster can begin to deal with its lamentable economy (01/22/2015) | @economist
Competitive economy | @belfastcc
Belfast City Report (PDF; 2007) | Jorg Ploger @CASE_LSE
THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF QUEEN’S UNIVERSITY BELFAST ON THE NORTHERN IRELAND ECONOMY (PDF; 2015) | @UniversitiesUK
THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY IN NORTHERN IRELAND (PDF; 2015) | @UlsterUni @OxfordEconomics
Economic expert Esmond Birnie leaving PwC to take up Ulster University post (09/28/2016) | Margaret Canning @BelTel
The Economic Impact of International Students on Northern Ireland (PDF; 27/11/2015) | Eoin Murphy @niassembly
How is the Belfast economy performing, and what are the key policy issues facing the city? | @CentreforCities
The History of Economic Development in Ireland, North and South (PDF; 1999) | John Bradley @britac_news
Queen’s University Centre for Economic History – QUCEH Working Paper Series | IDEAS @stlouisfed


Balkan Vol.3 (Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia)

former Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia1Yugoslavia2Yugoslavia3Yugoslavia4
Bosnia & Herzegovina


Serbia


Croatia


Slovenia


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.7

Here are @_WorldSolutions’ RTs which include free papers, reports (citing others), et al.


Central Asia Vol.3

Uzbekistan

cf. Uzbekistan country profile (12/14/2016) | @BBC   Uzbekistan: Economy | @ADB_HQ   Uzbekistan | @StateDept   Uzbekistan | Observatory of Economic Complexity @MIT   Trains in Uzbekistan    UZBEKISTAN AND KAZAKHSTAN: A TALE OF TWO TRANSITION PATHS? (PDF; 2004) | Asad Alam and Arup Banerji @WorldBank   Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan Deploy Troops In Dispute Over Border Mountain (3/23/2016) | @pragpete @RFERL   Public health risk assessment and interventions – Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan (PDF; June 2010) | @WHO   Uzbekistan & Kyrgyzstan map (PDF) | @FAO   Uzbekistan, Tajikistan Flights Loom, And Prices Soar (2/1/2017) | Kamila Ibragimova @EurasiaNet   Central Asia: Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan | @WWF   Uzbekistan’s View of Security in Afghanistan After 2014 (PDF) | Matthew Stein @ Foreign Military Studies Office   Uzbek Railways awarded new Afghan operations and maintenance contract (3/22/2015) | @andrew_grantham   Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Iran Combined Tour 23 days | @NasrinInfo

(Excerpts are on our own.)

Brothers Again: Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan – Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev visited his Kazakh counterpart Nursultan Nazarbayev in Astana. (3/24/2017) | Catherine Putz @Diplomat_APAC   … Nazarbayev, a long-time proponent of regional integration initiatives, never quite found a receptive partner in Uzbekistan’s first president, Islam Karimov. … Nazarbayev said that the two leaders would sign 75 contracts worth nearly $1 billion at a Kazakh-Uzbek business forum on March 23. … Uzbekistan has the population advantage, with more than 30 million to Kazakhstan’s 17 million; but Kazakhstan has had the economic advantage with a GDP of $184.4 billion in 2015, to Uzbekistan’s $66.7 billion. …

Dammed or Damned: Tajikistan and Uzbekistan Wrestle Over Water-Energy Nexus (4/2/2013) | Shavkat Kasymov @WorldPolicy   … Tajikistan consumes an average of 39,000 barrels a day, mostly from Uzbekistan… A main point of contention is a controversial hydroelectric project, the Rogun Dam, in the works since the 1960s. The project has been advertised by Tajik leaders as a path to energy and economic independence, but Uzbeks claim it will stop their share of the flow of the Vakhsh River, a resource that is crucial to its cotton monocrop economy. … The bulk of it is consumed by the Tadaz aluminum plant, a major source of revenues for the state budget. …

Afghanistan, Uzbekistan Trade Relations Strengthened (1/3/2017) | @TOLOnews   … “When we import goods from Pakistan, it takes nineteen days, but when we import from Uzbekistan, it takes nine days,” said Rasa. …construction materials will be imported from Uzbekistan and that Uzbek companies will invest in road construction, bridges and railways in the country. …

Uzbekistan, key to Afghan war drawdown, to ban foreign military bases (8/30/2012) | Abdujalil Abdurasulov @csmonitor   … When Pakistan closed the main NATO supply route in November, the Northern Distribution Network (NDN), a route that relies on Uzbekistan, took up the slack – about 75 percent of all non-lethal cargo was shipped through the NDN supply route mostly via Uzbekistan. … Uzbekistan is trying to send a message to Russia and its neighbors that Tashkent is not going to make a U-turn and host US bases on its territory. … Tashkent-based political analyst Farkhod Tolipov says Uzbekistan’s ban is in an effort to prevent militarization in the region. “Any new base will only lead to a geopolitical competition.” …

Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan: Staying Away (PDF) | S. Frederick Starr @SilkRoadStudies   … Uzbekistan has the region’s largest military force and Turkmenistan one of the smallest. And Uzbekistan inherited from Soviet times the largest establishment of heavy industry, while Turkmenistan began with the smallest. … No sooner did the Uzbeks arrive in Central Asia in the thirteenth century than they began settling in the region’s ancient cities, with their capital at Bukhara. … In gestures directed against what they openly call Russian colonialism, both Latinized their alphabets (the only states in the region to do so) and have marginalized the Russian language. … With respect to Turkmenistan, it can push Iran to seize the initiative in supplying Pakistan and India with gas; create access problems at Turkmenistan’s expanded Black Sea port of Turkmenbashi… Russia can easily invent and apply other restrictions to prevent Uzbek goods such as fruits and vegetables from entering its market. Considering that Russian-Uzbek bilateral trade reached $7 billion in 2013… Russia has already begun to play the “water and electricity card” against both Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. …Kambarata hydropower plant and effectively controls the Toktogul reservoir and power plant, both in Kyrgyzstan. …democratization and human rights. … Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are the main bellwethers for stability and instability in Central Asia as a whole. …they value their trade with Russia, which for each country is valued at approximately $7 billion per annum. …unclear whether Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, too, will be drawn into the Eurasian Economic Union, remain outliers constantly under pressure from Moscow, or become beacons of sovereignty, self-determination, coordination and cooperation in the region…


Free papers, reports, et al. Vol.1

Here are @_WorldSolutions’ recent RTs which include free PDFs of papers, reports, et al.


Canada Vol.32 (Prince Edward Island)

(There are some broken links…)

cf. Canada Vol.18 (PEI econ)    PEI Economy | @InfoPEI    Strategic Sectors | @Innovation_PEI    The Prince Edward Island Bioscience Cluster Economic Impact Analysis (PDF; 3/2014) | @PEIBIOALLIANCE @jupia   PROVINCIAL OUTLOOK: PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND (PDF; 3/2017) | @RBC   Open for Business: Sectors | @ChtownPE   Charlottetown, PEI home neighbourhoods, realtors, and movers | @movingincanada

Cf. #Easter  The Bunnies Are Ready For Easter Breakfast Tablesetting (4/15/2017) | @PEIBistro   Classic French Easter Menu Fresh Spring Flavor for Paques (4/10/2017) | Rebecca Franklin


Easter 2017

Here are articles on Easter. Excerpts are on our own.

The Economics Of Easter (4/12/2017) | Rutger Bloemenkarr @The_MarketMogul   … According to @NRFnews’s annual Easter Spending Survey, which surveyed 7411 American customers about their Easter Sunday plans at the beginning of March, the total amount that is expected to be spent in the US is $18.4bn in 2017, which is approximately $152 dollar a person. This is considered to be the highest amount in 14 years, up by about 6% compared to 2016. …consumers are expected to spend $5.8bn on food, $3.3bn on clothes, $2.9bn on gifts, $2.6bn on candy, $1.2bn on flowers, $1.1bn on decorations, and $788mn on greeting cards. … The majority of Americans, about 58% to precise, visit discount stores to purchase their gift of preference, while the remainder visit department stores (46%), local stores (26%), or online stores (27%). … Almost two out of three Americans (61%) will visit their family and/or friends for Easter, 57% will cook a holiday-oriented meal, a majority visit church (52%), and a small portion go to a restaurant (17%). Additionally, more than one-third of the consumers surveyed (35%) are expected to have a so-called Easter egg hunt. Lastly, 16%…  According to @smallbiztrends…

Easter in Canada | @dgreetings   … – Eggs are forbidden during Lent but after fasting they are consumed mixed with maple syrup. Also special Easter passion plays and songs are performed at the major theatres and community halls of the major cities of Canada.    – A typical Canadian Easter is characterized by its mouthwatering and sumptuous recipes of ‘Maple Baked Beans’, ‘Potatoes Nicoise’, ‘Cape Breton Scones’ and apple tart. Thus, Easter in Canada is an event worth enjoying for its wide festive activities.

The Easter Egg Hunt, the Economy and the New Game (6/4/2015) | @LearntSchool @HuffPostUK   … @charliehoehn,@FreeRangeHumans,@ajjuliani …

Britain to benefit from 1.8 per cent boost to economy this Easter:  BRITAIN’S economy will grow by 1.8 per cent this year according to upgraded forecasts from the EY ITEM Club, thanks to a recovery in global trade. (9/4/2017) | Geoff Ho @Daily_Express    Easter: Quarter of UK Christians do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, survey reveals (11/4/2017)     Irish business owners urged to be vigilant this Easter (13/4/2017) | Robert McHugh @BusinessWorldIE

Canberra’s experts divided over economics of Easter holidays (10/4/2017) | @DavidTuckwell3 @The_RiotACT   … According to @CBRBusiness, the territory’s top business lobby, the effect can be negative as public holidays mean penalty rates, and penalty rates mean unemployment. “Generally speaking, penalty rates on public holidays make businesses think staying open on a public holiday is just not viable,”… “Some businesses – particularly small businesses – look at their cost of operation compared to potential income and think it’s not commercially viable to open.” … “The problem with this entire penalty rates debate is the ‘fallacy of composition’,” says @MattGrudnoff, an economist at @TheAusInstitute, a left-leaning think tank based in Civic. … According to Professor Phil Lewis, an economist at @UniCanberra, there are both moral and economic considerations to keep in mind. “If you have a public holiday, employers who pay the award will be obliged to pay $45 an hour for a person on the lowest wage. …some businesses will stay open, especially family-owned businesses, as family members won’t demand penalty rate…

Retailers baffled by Easter trading laws (11/4/2017) | Matthew Theunissen @nzherald   … A recent law change gave local councils the authority to permit Easter Sunday trading and 25 mostly smaller councils have so far taken up the option. … Five councils have continued with the the ban while all major centres are yet to reach decisions. Shops which open in the restricted areas risk a prosecution and $1000 fine. … There are exemptions to the Easter trading laws, and some of them are quite unusual. Dunedin’s Carnegie Centre has an exemption to sell arts, crafts, children’s toys and books on Easter Sunday. “Toys and books sold only while performances happening on the mezzanine floor,”… In Nelson, crafts can be sold “whenever Founders Park is open”. @nelsoncitynz has been approached for clarification on whether this means any shop can sell crafts while the park is open, or only shops within the park. A clearer definition of “crafts” was also sought from the council. … Other exemptions include dairies, service stations, takeaways, bars, restaurants and cafes, duty-free stores and shops providing services rather than selling goods, such as a hairdresser. … The industry had fought hard to get the exemption and Odering could not understand why it didn’t include Friday, too. … Since 1992, Odering said the his business had paid in excess of $20,000 in fines, Department of Labour Fees and court costs because they had refused to shut shop over Easter. @RetailNZ spokesman… @MBIEgovtnz data shows that prosecutions for shops illegally opening over Easter steadily declined from 63 in 2006, to 34 in 2008, 28 in 2010, 25 in 2012, 0 in 2014 and 3 in 2016. …

Easter to bring a million foreign tourists to Netherlands (4/13/2017) | Janene Pieters   About 950 thousand foreign tourists will spend Easter weekend in the Netherlands, according to calculations by @NBTC. “It is expected to be very busy”, a spokesperson said to @NOS. “In comparison with last year, we expect 100 thousand more tourists.” Most foreign visitors come from Germany, about 600 thousand. And over 200 thousand Belgians are expected to visit this weekend. …increasing since 2009… Last year 15.8 million foreigners visited our country. This can partly be attributed to the recovering economy in Europe and America. And due to the weak euro, it is relatively cheap for non-euro countries to visit the Netherlands on holiday. The threat of terrorist attacks in European cities such as Paris and Brussels also…

Norwegian Easter Traditions   … In old times, people would climb mountains on Easter Sunday morn to watch the sunrise as they thought the sun danced with joy for the resurrection of Christ.  It is suggested that this could have started the Norwegian habit of ‘going up the mounatins’ at Easter time.  This day was also a day to predict the weather for the Summer.  If it was a good day then the Summer would be good too.  If there was frost the night before the Sunday then the Summer would come late.  For some reason, the Bunad is not worn during Easter. Easter Sunday breakfast is a grand affair.  Anything and everything is put on the table, cured meats and especially eggs – boiled, scrambled, fried, (and even fish eggs!), you name it.  The boiled eggs are often dyed or painted before eating.  Traditionally the Winter stores are low from the long Winter, so there is not much cooking or baking, especially compared to Christmas time.  However, egg dishes are in abundance, especially when there has been a lot of egg decorating with lots of leftover whites and yolks.  Pancakes are also a popular treat at Easter. … The Easter egg hunt is a common tradition around the world and in Norway children look for a brightly decorated paper eggshell filled with small lollies.  The eggs used to be real chicken eggs…

Easter | @denmarkdotdk   …most Danes regard Easter as a holiday. A national survey in 2000 showed that 48% of the Danes attached particular importance to the family spending time together during Easter and 37% regarded it as a holiday; only 10% mentioned ‘attending Church’ and ‘the Christian message’ as the main feature of Easter. … Many homes and shops are decorated for Easter in green and yellow, especially with new-leaved branches and daffodils. The main symbol of Easter is still the egg. The eggs used for decoration may be ordinary hen’s eggs which have been blown out and coloured or they may be imitation eggs or various kinds of sugar and chocolate eggs. Other decorations include small artificial hens and chickens and gradually also the Easter hare, which formerly was almost exclusively common in the areas by the German border. There is a unique Danish Easter tradition, viz. the custom of sending teaser letters. In the weeks before Easter especially children cut out elaborate letters, on which they write a so-called teaser verse. The letter is anonymous, but signed with a number of dots corresponding to the number of letters in the sender’s name, so that the recipient has a chance of guessing who sent it. The pledge is a chocolate Easter egg redeemed at Easter. The letter is accompanied by a snowdrop, which is regarded as the first flower of the year. …

Easter in Sweden (4/12/2017) | @Sweden_Belgrade   …most people celebrate it at home with their families and relatives. … Nowadays, eggs are a favourite accompaniment to the dish of pickled herring that is the centrepiece of most Swedes’ Easter meals. And few associate the omnipresent birch twigs − nowadays decorated with brightly coloured feathers − with the suffering of Christ. Easter has its own rituals. Children dress up as Easter witches; clad in discarded clothes, gaily coloured headscarves and red-painted cheeks, they go from house to house in the neighbourhood and present the occupants with paintings and drawings in the hope of getting sweets in return. Having consumed all these sweets, they are then given Easter eggs filled with yet more. … A traditional Easter lunch is likely to consist of different varieties of pickled herring, cured salmon and Jansson’s Temptation (potato, onion and pickled anchovies baked in cream). … At dinner, people eat roast lamb with potato gratin and asparagus, or some other suitable side dish.


New Zealand Vol.10 (Wellington, Manawatu-Wanganui)

Wellington

cf. Economic fall and rise: 1976 to 21st century | @Te_Ara   Key investment sectors | @Wellington_NZ   Profile of Wellington | @WgtnCC

Manawatu-Wanganui

cf. About our Region and Council | @HorizonsRC   Manawatu | @PureNewZealand   ‘Whanganui’ and ‘Wanganui’ | @VisitWhanganui

Cf. Easter and Beef Wellington. (4/6/2015)  


Good Friday (& Agreement)

Here are articles on #GoodFriday & the Good Friday Agreement (the Belfast Agreement).  Excerpts are on our own.

When is Easter weekend 2017? Key bank holiday dates and facts for Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter: Monday Why does the date for Easter Sunday change every year according to the lunar calendar? We’ve got all the answers to your questions (13/4/2017) | Ian Leonard & @jondeano @DailyMirror     Good Friday vs Easter: We Don’t Always Have to Win (5/4/2015) | @jontylangley @HuffPostUK

When is Good Friday in 2017 and is it a Bank Holiday? Easter celebrations and Christian festivals – here’s all you need to know: The important date in the Christian calendar is a national holiday (13/4/2017) | @LittleBitSoph @TheSun   … Good Friday is commemorated because the date marks the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. Accounts of the Gospel state that it was the day that the son of God was betrayed by Judas, before he was sentenced to death. The date falls during Holy Week on the Friday before Easter Sunday, and sometimes coincides with the Jewish celebration of Passover. Experts believe the event has been coined “Good Friday” because the word “good” means pious or holy. …

Who, What, Why: Why is Good Friday called Good Friday? (18/4/2014) | @BBCNewsMagazine   … according to Fiona MacPherson, senior editor at @OED, the adjective traditionally “designates a day on (or sometimes a season in) which religious observance is held”. The OED states that “good” in this context refers to “a day or season observed as holy by the church”… According to the Baltimore Catechism – the standard US Catholic school text from 1885 to the 1960s, Good Friday is good because Christ “showed His great love for man, and purchased for him every blessing”. … It also says that the day is known as “the Holy and Great Friday” in the Greek liturgy… Karfreitag (Sorrowful Friday) in German.

UK government committed to Good Friday agreement, says NI secretary: James Brokenshire said government supports re-establishing power-sharing devolved authority after assembly elections (17/1/2017) | @henrymcdonald @guardian     Northern Ireland’s system of government is broken. We must review the Good Friday Agreement (18/1/2017) | @lrobertsonmp @Telegraph

The Good Friday Agreement and today: The Good Friday Agreement is the cornerstone of our commitment to peace and stability on this island. It was agreed on 10 April 1998 and overwhelmingly approved in 2 referendums in both parts of Ireland in May 1998. | @dfatirl   Northern Ireland Assembly, North South Ministerial Council, British-Irish Council; St. Andrew’s Agreement (2006), Hillsborough Agreement (2010), Stormont House Agreement (2014), A Fresh Start – The Stormont Agreement and Implementation Plan (2015)

Good Friday is Ireland’s Brexit talks ace card (31/3/2017) | Jim Power @irishexaminer   … The optimal outcome would be a smooth process that would placate the UK and, thereby, set the scene for a decent trade deal once the UK has formally exited the system in two years. For Ireland, the potential challenges are obviously immense. We clearly have a special relationship with the UK from a political, economic and cultural perspective. Some 800 years of history cannot be eroded overnight, nor should it be. I have always been sceptical about the willingness of the EU to treat Ireland as a special case and do us special deals, but the Good Friday agreement is very definitely Ireland’s ace card. There is a strong realisation in Brussels of just how important that process has been in delivering peace and prosperity on the island of Ireland, and one assumes that the EU would not want to undermine that. This should be the central plank of Ireland’s approach to the EU meeting on April 29. …

Britain ‘will never be neutral’ on Northern Ireland, says Theresa May Jeremy Corbyn backs NI assembly’s right to hold border poll on a united Ireland (29/3/2017) | @reuters,@IrishTimes   … “We are of course, within that, fully committed to ensuring that the unique interests of Northern Ireland are protected and advanced as we establish our negotiating position, and our position has always been clear that we strongly support the Belfast Agreement, including the principle of consent that Northern Ireland’s constitutional position is a matter for the people of Northern Ireland to determine. “But as our manifesto made clear, we have a preference that Northern Ireland should remain part of the United Kingdom, and we will never be neutral in expressing our support for that. …

Good Friday Agreement: 10 April 1998 | @BBC   … A personal assurance from Tony Blair to UUP leader David Trimble smoothed these last ripples of discontent. … The Belfast Agreement (or Good Friday Agreement as it would become known) contained proposals for a Northern Ireland Assembly with a power-sharing executive, new cross-border institutions with the Republic of Ireland and a body linking devolved assemblies across the UK with Westminster and Dublin. … Referendums were held on the same day in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. In the north, voters were asked to ratify the deal. In the south, they were asked to approve a change to the constitution of Ireland. All sides agreed a credible majority was required if the deal was to survive. While most nationalists and republicans were clearly in favour, a unionist and loyalist majority was far from certain. … In Northern Ireland, 676,966 people voted in favour of the deal, while 274,879 voted against. The ‘yes’ vote was 71.12%. Turnout was a record 81.10%. In the Republic the recorded ‘yes’ vote was 94.39%, with 1,442,583 people voting in favour and 85,748 voting against. …

Good Friday and the wait for a new politics in Northern Ireland (15/4/2015) | David Mitchell @openDemocracy   … For unionists, it was simply a pragmatic response to ensure that pro-Union voters did not lose out in the “winner takes all” Westminster system. … A pall of negativity has rested on the Northern Irish political scene at least since the Belfast City Hall flag protests began in late 2012. There has been failure to make substantive progress on the three issues which are symptomatic of the underlying and ongoing identity conflict: flags, parades and the past. … According to the 2013 Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey the proportion of people who think relations between Protestants and Catholics are better now than five years ago has fallen from sixty-five percent in 2007 to forty-five percent in 2013. …

The Troubles Are Back (5/10/2015) | Eamonn McCann (@IrishTimes) @nytimes   … Yet the deal delivered by Senator Mitchell contained the seeds of its own destruction. In effect, the Good Friday Agreement assigned every person in Northern Ireland to either the unionist or nationalist camp, and the decision-making institutions it created, the Northern Ireland Assembly and its accompanying Executive, were designed to be balanced between the two camps. The plan was not to eliminate sectarianism, but to manage its manifestations. …


South Carolina Vol.2

cf. Adults in South Carolina – Religious composition of adults in South Carolina | @pewresearch    Breaking the Baha’i code: An in-depth report on South Carolina’s second most common religion (2/12/2016) | @MandyNoell @wmbfnews    The Easter Miracle at Temple Beth El in Camden, South Carolina (7/25/2016) | Bill Fitzpatrick @SavingPlaces         Boeing machinists in South Carolina reject unionization (2/16/2017) | @CBSNews,@AP    Charleston Harbor deepening project to expand industry’s window to world market (1/29/2017) | @David_Wren_ @postandcourier


Caucasus Vol.1 (Armenia)

cf. Stuck with each other: A Russian ally rues its dependence upon Moscow (3/20/2015) | @TheEconomist    Armenia’s Russia problem (12/13/2016) | CHRISTINA GATHMAN @thehill (@IntelTrak)

Support to the Armenia-Turkey Normalisation Process: Stage Two | @Armenia_Turkey    Armenia and Turkey: From normalization to reconciliation (2/24/2015) | Andrew Moffatt, Fiona Hill, and Kemal Kirişci @BrookingsFP

The potential and obstacles to Armenia-Iran strategic relations (3/16/2016) | Eduard Abrahamyan, The Central Asia-Caucasus Institute and Silk Road Studies Program Joint Center    Christian Armenia and Islamic Iran: An unusual partnership explained (1/14/2013) | HAROUT HARRY SEMERDJIAN @thehill … Its border with an often unstable Georgia remains open to the North as well as a tiny 22-mile Southern border with Iran – termed as a “lifeline” for the culturally-rich yet resource-poor country of 3 million. …northern Iran is inhabited by over 15 million Azeris (double the population of the Republic of Azerbaijan), driving Iran’s concern of a potential… Two seats in the Iranian Parliament are appointed for Armenian representation and northern Iran, once a part of several Armenian kingdoms… Russia remains Armenia’s strategic ally and Armenia has very warm and developing relations with the United States and the EU. …the United States should assist Armenian integration in regional economic and transportation projects and to energize U.S.-Armenia economic relations via a bilateral Trade and Investment Framework Agreement. …

The world’s first Christian country? (4/6/2017) | Amanda Proença Santos & Rodolfo Contreras @BBC (via @ARAMAC_DC)

https://twitter.com/SupportArmenia/status/850904469466382336