Pakistani Poker: Playing Saudi Arabia Against China

Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Pakistan, called on Imran Khan, prime minister-in-waiting (Twitter)

by James M. Dorsey Desperate for funding to fend off a financial crisis fuelled in part by mounting debt to China, Pakistan is playing a complicated game of poker that could hand Saudi Arabia a strategic victory in its bitter… Continue Reading  

Why Trump’s Global Unpopularity Matters

Protest in London in July 2018 (Shutterstock)

by Paul R. Pillar The Pew Research Center has released the results of the latest survey in its annual series of public-opinion polls tracking attitudes in 25 foreign countries. Donald Trump’s numbers are bad. On the central question of whether… Continue Reading  

Middle Eastern Black Swans Dot China’s Belt and Road

Xi Jinping (Kaliva via Shutterstock)

by James M. Dorsey  If any one part of the world has forced China to throw its long-standing foreign and defense policy principles out the window and increasingly adopt attitudes associated with a global power, it is the greater Middle East,… Continue Reading  

China Struggles with Belt and Road Pushback

YIUCHEUNG via Shutterstock

by James M. Dorsey China, in an implicit recognition that at least some of its Belt and Road-related projects risk trapping target countries in debt or fail to meet their needs, has conceded that adjustments may be necessary. “It’s normal… Continue Reading  

China, The Language of Virtue, and the Global Order

Xi Jinping (Shutterstock)

by James Watt From a Western viewpoint, never has the international scene looked more provisional, more uncertain. Some of the confusion is self-inflicted (Trump, Brexit). Some results from a century of political failure and social crisis inflicted for the most… Continue Reading