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u/Seldon_ · 1 pointr/geopolitics

Look at George Friedman's The Next 100 Years.

This is a good starting point on how one should be predicting which countries might become great powers and which will decline. His actual predictions don't really matter here, however; the takeaway is that long-term analysis of geopolitics relies a holistic and multidisciplinary approach and situational awareness of world events rather than simple linear extrapolations. Projections of population and GDP and other metrics are not going to give you anything close to the complete picture, even though they deceptively lead you to believe they do.

Anyway, predictions:

  • India is not going to be a leading power for quite some time. I have been there - there are so many social and environmental issues that I don't even know where to begin. It is extremely overcrowded and polluted, whatever infrastructure it has is under immense strain from overuse, and its technological base is impressive but thinly spread out over a large country with over 1.3 billion people. It has a lot of talent, resources, and potential, but even in the best case scenario, most of that is going to be focused inward on solving those problems rather than projecting power and influence outward.
  • China is already one, but it has many of the same issues that India has, and whether it is going to overtake the US as the leading hegemon is a question that is completely up in the air. The US' current stance is one of containment - control of the island chains surrounding its major trade lines is a central component of that. Provided that internal economic and demographic issues do not catch up, China will largely be focused on dislodging the US from its littoral either through diplomatic or military means.
  • Russia is a power in terminal decline.
  • Japan is in managed decline.
  • Korea has potential, should it be unified.
  • Southeast Asia will be contested ground between Pacific powers.
  • Europe is in slow decline, and strictly speaking is not a proper power in its own right. The main power centers of Europe are Germany and France. In the absence of any significant shifts in foreign policy, their international stature is not likely to change significantly but perhaps decline over time. Poland is interestingly resurgent and will likely become a bigger player as time goes on.
  • The Middle East is the region most likely to change over the next thirty years. The only countries truly capable of becoming major power centers there are Turkey and Iran, but only one of them, and the former is currently dealt the better hand. Saudi Arabia is an honorable mention.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa will continue to see Chinese investment but remain largely peripheral to world affairs. However, countries there will become much more capable of confronting internal and regional issues.
  • Australia will assert an increasingly independent foreign policy.
  • The US will still be powerful but is likely to remain in (relative) decline. Internal political/economic issues will probably start mounting as the boomers die off. Mexico will be in much better shape on the other hand. This combined with the large Mexican-American population may become a genuine source of tension at some point - perhaps much sooner than Friedman expected, if Trump's presidential campaign was any indication.
  • Brazil will remain, as always, the country of the future.
u/shillforyou · 0 pointsr/geopolitics

>Ummm please stop making up total BS and acting like you know what you're talking about when you quite obviously do not.

Reality: All claims have been sourced.

>Allow me to educate you a bit.


Reality: Linking books from one international lawyer's opinions does not constitute a specific response to any claim made.

>The NPT and the IAEA are two separate things. The IAEA is not a nuclear weapons police force in charge of finding hidden nuclear weapons programs, it is just another international organization in charge of promoting nuclear power by setting stadnards etc.

Reality: True, and uncontested in any post.

>The NPT requires signatories to maintain safeguards with the IAEA (the one Iran signed in 1974 was the standard as that signed by other countries)

Reality: True, and uncontested.

>had you actually read it and understood it you'd see this -- the role of the IAEA is

>EXCLUSIVELY to measure the amount of nuclear material and compare it to the countries declarations to ensure that there has been no diversion of nuclear material to non-peaceful uses

Reality: True, and uncontested. The original claim made was that military sites must be opened for inspection on suspicion of violation of safeguards even under the NPT, making Iranian refusal of any grounds for inspection appear threatening to Saudi Arabia, rightly or wrongly.

>which the IAEA has certified to be the case in every single IAEA report on Iran, ever.

Reality: Misleading, at best.

Reality: A 2011 IAEA report noted that the IAEA can verify non-diversion of declared material, but due to Iranian non-cooperation, cannot verify the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran (p. 10). The IAEA therefore said it could not verify that Iran's program was "entirely peaceful". This is contrary to the goal of the IAEA Safeguards Agreement concluded with Iran, which states in Article 1:

>The Agency shall have the right and the obligation to ensure that safeguards will be applied, in
accordance with the terms of this Agreement, on all source or special fissionable material in all
peaceful nuclear activities within the territory of Iran, under its jurisdiction or carried out under its
control anywhere, for the exclusive purpose of verifying that such material is not diverted to nuclear
weapons or other nuclear explosive devices.

Reality: The IAEA could not undertake this function because Iranian noncompliance made it impossible to have "credible assurance" of Iranian use of nuclear material solely for peaceful purposes.

>So I suggest you educate yourself before spouting total nonsense

Reality: All claims are sourced.


Reality: Does not contest any point directly. Unclear response.

>Iran supports Hezbollah, a legitimate Lebanese political party that won massive support in parliamentary elections there

Reality: Hezbollah won 2 additional seats. Hezbollah's allies made significant gains, but are not Iranian-backed groups with military presence. Hezbollah retains 13 seats in a 128 seat Parliament.

Reality: Hezbollah's political clout does not change its terrorist status. The group remains a terrorist organization in the eyes of the liberal world. Hezbollah continues to plan and organize attacks targeting civilians for political purposes.

>Iran backed Nelson Mandela when the US had labeled him a terrorist

Reality: Source required.

>and while Israel was trying to sell nukes to tthe racist apartheid regime in S Africa, so what's your point?

Reality: This has been contested heavily, but the only allegations relate to allegations of an Israeli offer of sale in March 1975. This would be prior to the Iranian Revolution, and therefore could not physically be during the time you claim that Iran was backing Nelson Mandela, unless you are referring to the Shah backing Mandela.

>And ps there's no distinction between "private financiers" and the Saudi officials when it comes to state money there.

Reality: False. The Saudi government has, in the past, cracked down on private financiers. It has not done this regularly, but there is a separation that has turned towards crackdowns in recent years, despite prior ambivalence or tacit support.

>"There were parts coming from Iran, there was parts also coming from other countries" said Brig.-Gen. Guy Laroche. "I cannot say from what I see on the ground that Iran is behind that."

Reality: Article is from 2008. This is highly misleading. Afghan officials do not allege mere arms transfers. US intelligence does not allege mere arms transfers, but also funding. RAND think-tank reports describe this in further detail historically.

Reality: Article quotes NATO refusal to name Iran as source of IED materials. NATO's head in 2016 explicitly named Iran as a funding source for the Taliban. Your information is outdated.

>"We do not have any information about whether the government of Iran is supporting this, is behind it, or whether it is smuggling, or exactly what is behind it."

Reality: Incorporate above response. Also note article date of June 2007. US SecDef Gates said less than two weeks later that intelligence did tie Iran's government to the shipments.

Reality: US SecDef Gates reiterated that Iran was supporting the Taliban in 2010 under President Obama.

Reality: You are misrepresenting the information presented with misleading and outdated sources.

>British Find No Evidence Of Arms Traffic From Iran

Reality: Article is also from October 2006. Please incorporate above responses.

Reality: In 2008, British special forces uncovered evidence of Iran funding the Taliban.

Reality: In 2007, the British Army reported Iran supplies of missiles to the Taliban for use on British troops.

Reality: In 2011, British forces seized shipments of Iranian weapons bound for the Taliban.

Reality: You distorted and misled once more.

>Top US General: No Evidence Iran Arming Iraqis

Reality: Note article date of February 2007. Incorporate above sources.

Reality: Note article relates to arms to Iraqis, not Taliban.

Reality: In April 2007, two months after your article, Gen. Peter Pace stated that Iran was sending weapons to Iraq.

>Scant evidence found of Iran-Iraq Arms link

Reality: Note article date is January 2007. Incorporate above points, which thoroughly rebut argument.

>The US even refused Iranian cooperation over Al Qaeda

Reality: True, but uncontested and unrelated to above points.

>Iran even offered to give BinLadin's son to the US but the Bush admin refused

Reality: True, but uncontested, and unrelated. Bin Laden's fourth son, a middling operative, was not a high-value target as well.

Reality: Your own sources have all stated Iran funded, aided, and abetted Taliban and Iraqi militia actions. The 9/11 Commission Report and Bin Laden files confirm that Iran has assisted Al Qaeda. Iran has assisted Hezbollah. Iran has assisted Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the Houthis. Iran has at times not complied with IAEA Safeguards Agreements credibly, and is required under these agreements to open military sites for inspection upon suspicion per former deputy director-general of the IAEA Olli Heinonen and the Agreements and the IAEA Board of Governors, but refuses to open any military sites for any reason. This has, for good reason or not, led to fear by the Saudis, who have thus withdrawn their support for the JCPOA.

u/rnev64 · 10 pointsr/geopolitics

Interesting analysis.

Yet I'd like to challenge the fundamental argument : both authoritative and centralized states like Russia and the more pluralistic nation like the US, Canada or UK do not directly act to benefit their people. In all nations a governing elite forms as well a a civil service bureaucracy - and these two groups always act in ways that first and foremost benefit themselves.

There was a famous study of the US (by Harvard researchers iirc) that showed less than 1% of decision by US congress were consistent with what is perceived to be the public benefit or interest - rather it was shown that congress votes according to sectoral interests 99 out of 100 times.

All governing elites in all nations act with such similar selfish interests - but often enough these interests will also benefit the rest of the nation, it's not the intent but it is a byproduct. for example: big trade interests (corporations, share-holders, however you choose to define them) in the US want to keep the south-china seas open for trade because they profit billions off of it (as does the government/civil-service/bureaucracy - indirectly) - the benefit to American citizens in contrast is a secondary by-product.

Situation is similar in Russia: taking over Crimea is something Putin perceives as an interest for his regime but indirectly this is also in the interest of Russians because as you mentioned having Ukraine integrate with western economy weakens all of Russia - thereby worsening the economic situation and the quality of life for all Russians.

Now I am not claiming there are no difference between the western democracies and the Russian democracy (and I believe it is some type of democracy or pseudo-democracy - even if different than the "western" models) - but at the end of the day the fundamental core difference is how big the beneficiary elite is - in Russia it's tiny and in the west it's much bigger.

I believe the book "The Dictator's Handbook: Why Bad Behavior is Almost Always Good Politics" does a good job explaining this idea - that ultimately the difference between a centralized/pseudo-totalitarian state and less-centralized democracies is only the relative size of the ruling elite - that's still a big difference but it's a quantitative difference, not a qualitative one - as we might like to think.

u/dieyoufool3 · 1 pointr/geopolitics

It's one of their biases, though it's not anti-china as much as its not pushing to legitimize China's claims on the East Asian Sea/South China Sea. But save that comment for later this week, as I'll post a (hopefully on monthly or bi-monthly basis) discussion Friday regarding critical analysis of a certain publication/source's short-sight and biases. From there we would cycle through the most common publications posted, offering great opportunities to pool our communal perspectives (Fact-check, etc).

On on a more abstract level publication like "the Diplomat" do provide is an interesting case study of soft power projection from the broader American-lead consensus relating to foreign policy (aka current alliance orientations). Though using words like alliance may sound like 19th anachronism, Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote the highly influencial book The Grand Chessboard. Terminology he puts forth is often used, particularly as a lens of analysis in the recent Crimean Crisis. Anyways, he describes Japan's role in the US grand strategy as a "vassal". So that might be a rough and ready reason for the publication's particular thematic choices.

u/OleToothless · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

Sure, although it really depends on which geopolitical facets you enjoy the most.

Zbigniew Brzezinski's The Grand Chessboard. Heavily influences US foreign policy.

George Friedman's The Next 100 Years. This is the guy that started Stratfor and this book is a large part of why they started getting so much attention. I really like Friedman but I do find his actual prose can be pretty droll.

Charles Lister's The Syrian Jihad. Good read.

Any of Kissinger's books would probably be worth reading. Even if you don't like the guy, he's not dumb by any stretch, and he's still pretty influential.

If I think of more I'll post 'em.

u/StudyingTerrorism · 31 pointsr/geopolitics

This field can be very overwhelming and requires digesting a lot of information, so don't feel bad if you have a hard time understanding everything at first. Start by reading up and learning about the foundations of international relations (IR), which will later help you understand geopolitics. Despite the fact that this subreddit is named r/geopolitics, it not focus solely on geopolitical issues and instead looks at international relations as a whole.


Begin by reading Jack Snyder's article "One World, Rival Theories". It is a little dated, but it provides a sound overview of the field of international relations, the three primary paradigms of IR, and some examples of practitioners of those paradigms. Alternatively, if you wish to spend a little money, read Dan Drezner's Theories of International Politics and Zombies. It's a more relaxed and humorous introduction into IR through the lens of a global zombie threat.

You can also watch the London School of Economics and Political Science's video International Relations: An Introduction. It's about 10 minutes long and partially an advertisement for the university, but it provides a very simple overview of IR. If you wish to watch something longer and more in-depth, William Spaniel created a International Relations 101 playlist with videos that deal with individual aspects of IR. If you decide to watch it, do it in order so that you do not get overwhelmed by the more interesting-sounding (but much more complex) videos.

Once you feel you have a basic understanding of international relations and its theories, it's time to move to geopolitics. For this, I recommend watching Ronald J. Granieri's lecture entitled "What is Geopolitics and Why Does It Matter?" It's a little long, but it is one of the best explanations of geopolitics. Another video to watch is Robert Kaplan's (the patron saint of geopolitics) lecture entitled "The Geopolitics of the World", which is a little less introductory but provides a decent overview of geopolitics.

After all this, you should have a solid-enough grasp of the field to begin branching off and reading about more specific materials.


I am currently working on an introduction to geopolitics and international relations for r/geopolitics as a way to introduce neophytes to the theories and ideas that are the foundation of the field. Unfortunately, it is one of several projects I am working at this moment. Combined with the time commitments to my actual career and crazy personal life (yes, us mods have lives outside of Reddit), it probably won't be completed anytime soon.

u/xingfenzhen · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

>Which reforms?

This one, essentially expanding capital of IMF and increase quote of emerging markets, including China, to align more closely to current GDP shares rather current US and European centric quotas. Similarly WTO Doha round has being stuck for so long, that people have forgotten that it even exists.

> Even when China is found to be in violation of said rules, no sanctions follow.

Not so, all WTO decision carry penalties against companies and industries. The most famous one recently is 78% tariff levied on Chinese solar panels. You can read details here

>Who was hoping for this?

Plenty of people in 90s and into the early 2000s, the idea that the "freer", wealthier and more capitalistic Southern and Coastal China will break away from it conservative, poor and conservative North unless China transition into a democracy and adopt a federal-state government. And it is the most frequent western view I have encountered when I was in China though underground pamphlets and article distributed by pro-democracy activists as well as in Chinese language Voice of America broadcasts. I not sure how widespread this view is actually in the western think tanks at the time, but it is accurately described in senario #3 in this article. However, by the time I really get into this . Hence the use of "in the past" in my previous post. The most recent use this view I know of is Stratfor's George Friedman in his book, The Next 100 Years. While such an event will certainly cause instability around the world, it will however, take care of The Chinese Question once and for all.

>Nixon's opening of China was the first step, and as the US pushed for greater economic liberalization and opened its markets to China, China grew exponentially.

Perhaps you should read Chinese, American history more carefully before entering into this discussion. (Harry Harding's China's Second Revolution and A Fragile Relationship are excelent starts depsite it's age) Not sure where you get this idea from, at the time with US foreign policy under Kissinger and Brzezinski, US-China relationship centered primarily on security and the American establishment was actually surprised at the Rapid demise of Chairman Hua, the scale of Chinese economic reform and the rise of Deng.

>non-existent labour laws

Oh, they exist even in the 1990s see here and here. They are quite generous too, for example 98 days of mandatory Maternity leave, retirement at 60 for males and 50 for females, and no fault termination (layoffs) must carry severance payment of at least 3 month of salary etc. However, not well followed outside of SOEs with foreign contractors often being the biggest violators due to price pressure. If you want to be educated about this issue, read this

>Could you explain this, please?

Well, next year we'll have either Trump, Hillary or Bernie as president. And their all take a much more hawkish stance towards China (in addition to many other things, this election cycle is truly wild). The same year, all member of the Chinese Politburo except Xi and Li will retire, and leadership transition will finally complete. If Hu-Wen to Xi-Li transition is any indication; China will shift more hawkish as well.

Well, this took me two hours to write, and I have a day job. So I guess I'll end it here.

u/rogersII · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

> Israel is a country that seems to feel like it's backed into a corner as a Jewish state surrounded by Arab neighbors

The point was that Israel manufactured the "threat" for its own reasons.

You need to read this award-winning book before buying into the frame that Israel is the victim merely reacting to threats:

The point is that Israel manufactured the "Iran threat" because they don't want to see Iran and the US getting along.

>"[I]t wasn’t Iran that turned the Israeli-Iranian cold war warm – it was Israel . . . The Israeli reversal on Iran was partially motivated by the fear that its strategic importance would diminish significantly in the post-cold war middle east if the then president (1989-97) Hashemi Rafsanjani’s outreach to the Bush Sr administration was successful."

And so,

> Israeli politicians began painting the regime in Tehran as fanatical and irrational. Clearly, they maintained, finding an accommodation with such “mad mullahs” was a non-starter. Instead, they called on the US to classify Iran, along with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, as a rogue state that needed to be “contained.”

And as profs Walt & Mearsheimer have written, the "Iran threat" is useful for the pro-Israeli lobby too:
> In addition to this tendency for those with more extreme views to back and dominate key organizations in the lobby, there is another reason that many pro-Israeli groups have moved rightward: to keep contributions flowing in. As Waxman notes, "Many American Jewish organizations now need Israel to legitimate their own existence. Although these organizations may have been established for the purpose of enhancing and strengthening Israel, today Israel is vital for their continued viability." Portraying Israel as beleaguered and vulnerable, and issuing dire warnings about continued or growing anti-Semitism helps maintain a high level of concern among political supporters and thus helps ensure these organizations' continued existence. ...

>Although it makes good strategic sense for the United States and Iran to pursue a grand bargain, and although there is plenty of suport for that policy inside and outside of America, it is unlikely to happen anytime soon. Israel and the lobby will almost certainly try to thwart any efforts to seriously engage Iran before they get started, as they have consistently done since 1993...If the United States does launch an attack, it will be doing so in part on Israel's behalf, and the lobby will bear significant responsibility for having pushed this dangerous policy. And it would not be in America's national interest.

u/arjun101 · 3 pointsr/geopolitics

This is something that I have been looking into for the past month or so. Here are some good books that I've either read or am currently reading, and seem to have gotten positive reception from academics and experts and etc. Not all of these are specifically about all three subjects you mention, but taken as whole they will probably give you a pretty good understanding of what you want to know about.

u/capkap77 · 4 pointsr/geopolitics

From Amazon:

The world is changing in ways most of us find incomprehensible. Terrorism spills out of the Middle East into Europe. Russia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, China and Japan vie to see who can be most aggressive. Financial breakdown in Asia and Europe guts growth, challenging hard-won political stability.

Yet for the Americans, these changes are fantastic. Alone among the world's powers, only the United States is geographically wealthy, demographically robust, and energy secure. That last piece -- American energy security -- is rapidly emerging as the most critical piece of the global picture.

The American shale revolution does more than sever the largest of the remaining ties that bind America's fate to the wider world. It re-industrializes the United States, accelerates the global order's breakdown, and triggers a series of wide ranging military conflicts that will shape the next two decades. The common theme? Just as the global economy tips into chaos, just as global energy becomes dangerous, just as the world really needs the Americans to be engaged, the United States will be...absent.

In 2014's The Accidental Superpower, geopolitical strategist Peter Zeihan made the case that geographic, demographic and energy trends were unravelling the global system. Zeihan takes the story a step further in The Absent Superpower, mapping out the threats and opportunities as the world descends into Disorder.

u/Bizkitgto · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

Brzezinski's The Grand Chessboard is a great place to start.

u/ltsaGiraffe · 9 pointsr/geopolitics

> According to Stratfor's prediction

I'll be honest, Russia's current Federal structure isn't exactly a rock of stability, but a total USSR or Yugoslavia-style breakup/meltdown is a long-shot at best (worst). Besides, I wouldn't trust anything from Stratfor farther than I can throw George Friedman.

u/_ferz · 10 pointsr/geopolitics

Nope, that's not what I was getting at. Feel free to argue with your own preconceived notions at this point.

I will point out one thing. There is a good academic book on lobbies, particularly Israeli. In this case, is this okay for the government to take their money that ultimately alters US policy? Are you outraged by this or these particular players get a free pass but when Russia gives out a loan it's a subversion of democracy? Are you hypocrite or perhaps you can acknowledge that there is a fundamental flaw in the system and Russians are doing nothing wrong but to play this by the "rules" that Western democracies have established for themselves?

u/rwat1 · 1 pointr/geopolitics

You should check out George Friedman's 1991 book titled: "The Coming War with Japan" it's available on

I'm surprised that after 21 years after his prediction that Japan will go to war with the United States, the Japanese are still one of the staunchest proponents of American hegemony.

Basically, take his Asiatic geopolitical predictions with a grain of salt, but given his POLISH heritage, I find he has really good insight on the situation with Eastern Europe and Ukraine.

His dismiss of China succumbing to revolution and Japan becoming the leader of Asia is like science fiction wishful thinking.

u/SexyPundit · 3 pointsr/geopolitics

Drezner's Theories of International Politics and Zombies can be an enjoyable introduction to International relations. If you're interested in something more academic you can start by reading Morganthau's Politics Among Nations. And there's always the wikipedia route.

u/Bluebaronn · 54 pointsr/geopolitics

I was a fan of The Dictators Handbook.

Kissinger's On China was also very good.

u/Stephanstewart101 · 3 pointsr/geopolitics

The Dictator’s Handbook

This is a great book for understanding why governments do what they do.

u/Stormcloud23 · 4 pointsr/geopolitics

The Absent Superpower by Peter Zeihan would be a good start. He's also got a "sequel" coming out early next year called Disunited Nations which should go into even more detail. There are also plenty of recorded speaking events on youtube you can check out to get a general gist of his analysis. Here are the two most recent:

Keynote - Peter Zeihan 2019

The New World (Dis)Order - Peter Zeihan - 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference

u/fdeckert · 3 pointsr/geopolitics

Uh oh, someone is pretending to be an international arms control lawyer on reddit and doesn't know who he's talking to.

>ocol. Iran's Safeguards Agreement from 1974 included a provision in Article 73 that allows the IAEA to inspect any site if they believe Iran's explanations and information furnished does not meet the standards of honesty and accuracy required

Ummm please stop making up total BS and acting like you know what you're talking about when you quite obviously do not.

This is not at all the case and you have nothing to back such a bs claim.

Allow me to educate you a bit.

The NPT and the IAEA are two separate things. The IAEA is not a nuclear weapons police force in charge of finding hidden nuclear weapons programs, it is just another international organization in charge of promoting nuclear power by setting stadnards etc.

The NPT requires signatories to maintain safeguards with the IAEA (the one Iran signed in 1974 was the standard as that signed by other countries) and under the terms of this safeguards agreement you cited -- had you actually read it and understood it you'd see this -- the role of the IAEA is

EXCLUSIVELY to measure the amount of nuclear material and compare it to the countries declarations to ensure that there has been no diversion of nuclear material to non-peaceful uses which the IAEA has certified to be the case in every single IAEA report on Iran, ever.

So I suggest you educate yourself before spouting total nonsense

Iran supports Hezbollah, a legitimate Lebanese political party that won massive support in parliamentary elections there
Iran backed Nelson Mandela when the US had labeled him a terrorist and while Israel was trying to sell nukes to tthe racist apartheid regime in S Africa, so what's your point?

And ps there's no distinction between "private financiers" and the Saudi officials when it comes to state money there.

As for BS claims that Iran backed the Taliban or militias in Iraq

>"There were parts coming from Iran, there was parts also coming from other countries" said Brig.-Gen. Guy Laroche. "I cannot say from what I see on the ground that Iran is behind that."

Even US Sec Def Gates said he didn't have proof implicating Irans' govt in arming the Taliban

>"We do not have any information about whether the government of Iran is supporting this, is behind it, or whether it is smuggling, or exactly what is behind it."

British Find No Evidence Of Arms Traffic From Iran

Top US General: No Evidence Iran Arming Iraqis

Scant evidence found of Iran-Iraq Arms link

The US even refused Iranian cooperation over Al Qaeda

>Iranian diplomats made clear at the time they were looking for broader cooperation with the United States, but the Bush administration was not interested ...

Iran even offered to give BinLadin's son to the US but the Bush admin refused


u/catmeow321 · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

George Friedman is the author of the wonderful book that predicted: "The Coming War with Japan" in 1991. That guy. Haha

u/Swordsmanus · 38 pointsr/geopolitics

This is what the book Superforecasting is about. It's not just geopolitical events, it's general estimation and prediction ability. Here's a review and excerpts. There's also a Freakonomics podcast episode on the book.

TL;DR: Use Bayes' Theorem.

u/njtrafficsignshopper · -2 pointsr/geopolitics

One important work, I think, is this one

Especially regarding the US' role in the conflict if that interests you.

u/politicaltheoryisfun · 5 pointsr/geopolitics

Pair it with Drezners book on Zombies and International Relations and you got some educational beach reading!

u/ccc45p · 4 pointsr/geopolitics

Do you have an opinion on how China's actions compare to the actions described in the book

u/dmpk2k · 6 pointsr/geopolitics

Perhaps you're referring to Philip Tetlock's work. Those people were far from mundane though; it took a specific set of habits and personality traits.

He wrote a mainstream book about it.

u/toryhistory · 0 pointsr/geopolitics

there are dozens of books written about the bush administration. You should try reading some of them before deciding who is and isn't grownup, because none of them contain the slightest bit of evidence for petrodollar conspiracies.

u/n4ggs · 1 pointr/geopolitics

As a percentage of GDP only two central African nations make less off of trade with other nations. The American economy is Americans buying goods and services from other Americans.

Global trade could end tomorrow and the US economy would chug along. Everyone else would enter a dark age.

u/redjenny12 · 1 pointr/geopolitics

Iran and Israel actually cooperated afrer the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

According to the award winning book by Trita Parsi, it was actually Israel that escalated the conflict with Iran, because they feared that if the US and Iran start to get along then Israel will become a third wheel.

>But it wasn't Iran that turnedthe Israeli-Iranian cold war warm – it was Israel...The Israeli reversal on Iran was partially motivated by the fear that its strategic importance would diminish significantly in the post-cold war middle east if the then president (1989-97) Hashemi Rafsanjani’s outreach to the Bush Sr administration was successful.

Even Israeli politicians quietly concede that Iran isn't actually the threat they make it out to be

u/LtCmdrData · 16 pointsr/geopolitics

> didn't take you to be one who believed in this conspiracy theory

There is conspiracy theory about Jewish lobby and then there is influential Jewish Lobby. Trying to insinuate that there is only the conspiracy theory version is just clever argumentative trick, just like anti-Zionist = anti-Semite assumption.

u/crazybear_the_druid · 95 pointsr/geopolitics

If you are sincerely interested in learning more about this, I highly recommend Ahmed Rashid's journalistic magnum opus, Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia, Second Edition

Can't hope to elucidate a complex narrative in a few words, but a good portion of the reason why the US has been in Afghanistan and Iraq for so long comes down to international oil interests, consequences of the cold war, and Central Asian and Middle Eastern regional politics.

Check out the book. Hands down the most gripping nonfiction work I've had the pleasure to read.

Edit: to clarify, this book was first published in 2000. It is not an explanation of the wars, but a description of the geopolitical scene in Afghanistan written at a time before 9/11. Imo, it's incredible that Mr. Rashid was able to describe the structures and tensions which ended up explaining future wars.

u/sexymanish · 11 pointsr/geopolitics

Shows how foreign countries can influence and manipulate the foreign policies of other countries T

his confirms several specialists on Iran-Israel relations who said that Israel promoted a hostile US policy because it feared becoming irrelevant should the US and Iran get along -- see Trita Parsi's book, "Treacherous Alliances"

Note also wikileaks confirmed that Israel threatened to nuke Iraq to pressure the US to take a more aggressive stance there too

u/iwouldnotdig · -2 pointsr/geopolitics

15 years later, Saddam is still dead, and Iraq is the only arab democracy, and those are the two things the war was fought for, somehting which is clear to anyone who has bothered to read about the bush administration. Anyone claiming a lack of clarity simply hasn't bothered to do even the most basic research on the subject. Additional research makes it clear that the war resulted in fewer deaths than Saddam's regime was killing. Anyone repeating the much debunked claim that the administration lied is, at this point, willfully spreading ignorance.

These questions were once debatable, but that time is long passed. they've entered the realm of verifiable history, and this piece seems to be written by someone trapped in 2006.

u/xkcdFan1011011101111 · 0 pointsr/geopolitics

Did you watch the video I linked above?

The Russian education attainment is sky high because during the cold war the Russians made higher education a priority to achieve technological parity with NATO. This educational system was state-funded (ie the Soviet Union paid for it).

The Soviet Union collapsed in the late 80's/early 90's. Not only did the Berlin Wall fall down, but the Soviet Union ran out of money and control. They made massive cuts to their education system. Russia is still a nation with a weak economy, almost exclusively reliant on oil exports.

Peter Zeihan's analysis is that the Russian education system has yet to recover to its former glory from the collapse of the Soviet Union. In the video I linked, he mentions that the youngest Russians who benefited from the Russian education system at its peak are in their 50's now, and the Russian male life expectancy is only in the mid 60's.

I would recommend reading Peter Zeihan's book to see his analysis.

TL;DR: The Russian population has a high tertiary education attainment percentage due to the cold war; Russia is different now. The Russian education system underwent massive funding cuts when the Soviet Union collapsed, and funding levels haven't come close to recovering. It is hard to pinpoint sources for these things, so I'm relying on Peter Zeihan's analysis.

u/lizzieb_23 · 4 pointsr/geopolitics

You won't find much written about AIPAC and the pro-Israeli lobby's role in the Iraq war because that is a VERY touchy issue since the pro-Israeli lobby is VERY sensitive about being seen pushing the US for war, despite the fact that they are also VERY active in doing so

(Note the original article has mysteriously gone missing)

However I can recommend reading Walt & Mearsheimer's book

>The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy

The authors are top-level American foreign policy experts, and their book created a HUGE reaction because until then it was pretty much taboo to talk about the role of Israel and the influence of the pro-Israeli lobby in US foreign policy (anyone who did was dismissed as a Nazi nut -- although George Ball had written about it:, and also Findley

Note that the pro-Israeli lobby denies that a pro-Israeli lobby even exists and attributes claims to anti-Semitism, while yet at the same time the pro-Israeli lobby itself brags and boasts about its influence:

> I asked Rosen if aipac suffered a loss of influence after the Steiner affair. A half smile appeared on his face, and he pushed a napkin across the table. “You see this napkin?” he said. “In twenty-four hours, we could have the signatures of seventy senators on this napkin.”
I would recommend Walt & Mearsheimer's book

The authors had difficulty getting the book published at all in the US and no major US newspaper touched it. They could only initially get the London Review of Books to publish their essay on the subject too

As for the claim that Chalabi was an "Iranian agent" that somehow duped the US into invading Iraq, this was a bit of nonsense promoted after the war in an effort to justify it when the much-touted WMDs failed to turn up. In fact the Iranians warned the US to not invade Iraq

There were other such spins too. For example is was claimed that the US invaded Iraq because that Saddam had supposedly pretended to have WMds in order to deter Iran, but that somehow ended up mistakenly inducing the US into invading. Because you know, the US was too stupid to know better.

In reality the decision to invade Iraq had already been made despite the fact that the US knew there were no WMDs, and furthermore Iraq had filed a 12000 page detailed report to the UN showing how they had gotten rid of their WMDs as required. The Bush admin naturally claimed that this was all a lie and the WMDs were still there, Rumsfeld claimed they were "in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat" -- and later he denied saying that Iraq had WMDs at all.

Also the funny thing is that while the US was accusing Iraq of lying in their 12000 page report, it was also busy removing the pages from the report that implicated American and Western companies in the same WMD programs

u/thelasian · -2 pointsr/geopolitics

You can dismiss whatever you want, facts are still facts and don't care about your opinions:

FYI pro-israeli lobbyists themselves say so:

>“The reason why I want to tell this story now is, we may be going down a path, helped along by the American Jewish community, and maybe even Israel, that is going to be worse even than the one we’re on now – some sort of military confrontation with Iran. That worries me. Because they will be able to blame [it] on the Jews, to a great extent,” says Weissman, who worked at AIPAC from 1993 until 2005, much of that time as the group’s deputy director of foreign policy. Though Weissman disagrees sharply with those who say that AIPAC played a critical role in pushing for the 2003 U.S. decision to invade Iraq, he believes a war with Iran — which he says “would be the stupidest thing I ever heard of” — might well be blamed on AIPAC’s leaders and their constituents. “What the Jews’ war will be is Iran,” he says. “Not Iraq.”


Several award-winning books have been written on the subject too

u/dragonite1989 · 26 pointsr/geopolitics

George Friedman is terrible at East Asian geopolitics. Absolutely terrible.


In his 1991 book that he published/authored, entitlted: "The Coming War with Japan", available on Amazon with a measley 3 star rating, he predicts US will go to war with Japan in the future. The guy has been wrong for 27 years and counting!


He doubled down on Japan by predicting in the next 100 year's book that Japan will be the Leader of Asia, and China/India somehow disappears from relevance from internal upheaval. A fiction sci-fi American nationalistic narrative.


What a complete farce.


u/tayaravaknin · 6 pointsr/geopolitics

>"The pro-Iran" lobby AKA anti war lobby.

Those are not the same thing. Being pro-Iran involves being pro-war. You just want a war in Syria, Yemen, etc.

> He is a widely respect specialist whose book about how Israel was pushing for a US war on Iran, is widely lauded.

Widely respected is a loose term here. Nathan Thrall, who is very anti-Israel, pointed out that the book blurs the line between actual history and lobbying/propaganda. The book is wrong on its premise, as no war ever resulted. He has served as part of the lobbying machine, rather than as an expert. He doesn't criticize Iran's most heinous groups and proxies, has been praised by Iran's regime, and has influence in Iran because they like him and his lobbying...if the relationship isn't deeper than that.

When he was accused of being a shill for the regime, he sued the guy making the accusation for defamation, claiming he was lying. Parsi couldn't prove the guy was lying in court. He lost the case.

Then they appealed. The appeals court said they flouted deadlines, misrepresented documents, and were "dishonest and intransigent". They ended up having to pay over $180,000 in fines because, while they failed to prove that the accuser was lying when he called them shills for Iran, they were lying to the court too.

> Even the Jerusalem Post admitted that Netanyahu was pushing the US into a war with Iran

No, it didn't.

>"Netanyahu may not mind this scenario, as his primary goal throughout Obama's presidency– it is understood by his generals– was to have the US do the job of crippling Iran’s program through force on the world’s behalf."

I'm not sure why you'd misquote this source.

First of all, it isn't "the Jerusalem Post". It's an op-ed, by Michael Wilner. He is one correspondent. He does not represent the paper.

Second of all, the next few sentences say:

> Netanyahu likely sees Trump as a different animal who is either more likely to use force against Iran or, in the least, more likely to be feared if and when he threatens it

They're also talking about the possible threat of force, not just use of force. That's what Netanyahu wanted during Obama's years. Wilner is wrong if he means to say Netanyahu did want war. If Netanyahu wanted war, he'd have struck Iran himself in 2012 when given the option.

> Whatever labels you want to toss out, it is hardly just him saying it, Thee dispute was never about nukes or enrichment. He directly quotes Israeli officials too.

No, he doesn't quote Israeli officials. He makes a blanket statement without a source. Please do not misrepresent your own source.