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Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Impossible Syria, in less than 600 words

Syria: 320,000 dead (11,500 of them children) up to June and 4,088,099 refugees since 2011, and yet more to come. So, far from being resolved, the three-way civil war has become increasingly complicated. Neither Arabs nor Westerners, nor anyone else for that matter, have a clear strategy. Why? The [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega The New Silk Road passes through Iran

The agreement between the six world powers and Iran is important not only because it will prevent a war or a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, but because it paves the way for reintegrating the country into both regional and global frameworks. But this does not mean [...]

Arctic: from Cold to Ice-cold War

Vyacheslav Shtyrov, chairman of the Russian council of experts on the Arctic and Antarctica, recently said that ‘there is a strong possibility that the Russian Arctic is the first line of defence in case of a global military conflict, because that is the most likely direction of an adversary’s [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Dignity by 2030: no hunger and no extreme poverty

Despite the long and hard road that lies ahead, the world is a better place today than in 2000. It is closer to complying with some of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) that the countries meeting at the UN set for the end of 2015. The General Assembly will [...]

Think tanks and universities: what, why and how?

What are think tanks, and what is the nature of the relationship between them and the old universities from which almost all think tankers hail? This is a brief and very provisional attempt to think through how think tanks operate, and how they relate to the traditional universities with [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Charlie Hebdo: more questions than (provisional) answers

Why France now? Because France is where Charlie Hebdo and its Muhammad cartoons were published. Also, it is the most secular (but not necessarily the least religious) and most republican country in Europe. It is the society with the largest number of Muslims in the EU. It is taking [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega The coming proliferation: home-printed guns

After drones have become cheaper and almost commonplace, making them available today to any armchair aviator, the new possibility is printing plastic guns at home that are able to fire real bullets. The technology involved is 3D printing –by way of microjets that print layer upon layer of plastic [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Giving up on regime change, but hoping to transform them

In the last stretch of his second and final term, Barack Obama is coming out of the closet as an activist, using his presidential prerogatives. First has come the regularisation of nearly 5 million immigrants, then a push forwards in the negotiations with Teheran –which have gone beyond the [...]

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