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Geopolitical Trends for January 2017

January 12, 2017

Geopolitical Trends for January 2017


Europe is shifting right which is fairly apparent by now. Quite a few elections should

occur this year from France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, and Czech Republic.

Italy may also have a very big upsurge in popular shift with the 5 Star movement

likely to do well unless things are “adjusted” against them.


U.S. should finally have change at the helm in a few weeks. The fear of directional

change it is having on other global actors is interesting.


Turkey may reap a peace dividend if the agreement on Syria holds. In the past three

months the lira depreciated against the dollar by about ~17%. Deficits it has are

widening which was more or less understandable, energy and payback of debt in

foreign currency by enterprises and other actors is what is driving it in my view.

Reforms that will transition it into an presidential republic from a parliamentary

one are taking shape.


Two thoughts. It will stabilize and streamline decisions that need to be taken. Dissent

if squashed unabatingly may completely destabilize the country into civil war. I am

going to provide an example.Russia ended the war in Chechnya by coming to

agreement with the population, ergo at least half of the locals on the ground

supported re-integration and terms proposed by the central gov’t. How and through

what operations it was achieved afterwards is secondary. Turkey on the other hand

attempted and for a time succeeded using this model as well with the Kurds. However,

as of right now it is apparent that the compromise was breached a while ago and the

terms of reconciliation are simply not going to be followed by either side. Turkey will

attempt to purge any dissent in political sphere which will leave only the military

outlet for those locals on the ground. Perception that external communities of Kurds

that are already integrated into Turkish society is enough to coalesce the issue is false.

There has to be an agreement with the poor populous instead of the “elites” of that

society that is essentially outside.


Syria seems to be slowly transitioning into a positionary war. Which means that in the

next few years the processes will shift from military to politics even if no gains are

made on the ground by either side.


Korea is quiet even though the political process there with the impeachment and other

corruption scandals are gaining steam. What people ignore is during times of turmoil,

actions that were thought of as impossible can occur because leadership devolves

downward. This occurred in Ukraine after the presidential overthrow, when the

“acting” president essentially ordered military operations against Donetsk and

Lugansk. Focus should be made on the interregnum if Park leaves office and someone

assumes transitional duties. The Unification of Korea(s) is the event people

significantly discount. Note the headline “North Korea will declare WAR now” in the

express paper. Just saying the likelihood increases for this action.


The pressure on North Africa is bound to increase significantly once deportations occur

and migrants can’t get to Europe. The effect it may have will not be apparent for some



Yemen is also forgotten. Problem with it, is that Saudis’ do not understand the

dynamics around them and have no consideration of the global influence around them.

Right now there is a chance to come to terms and “gracefully” agree to end the conflict.

Perhaps it will be seen as a loss but one that is recoverable from. In two to three years

it may be possible for Yemen to actually claim victory through force. If the Yemen

offensive fails, and it will due to various factors favoring those on the other side from

terrain, morale, initiative, maneuverability, and so on, there will eventually come a

simple question. Why back a looser? This question will be asked by the global

community that supported the conflict when it was begun. Changing the narrative

after cumulative losses will not be possible. Mentality in the east of “my way or the

highway” without realizing that sometimes giving something is better than losing

everything, will take precedence. My expectation is the conflict will spiral out of

control, completely unexpectedly. Especially since China is beginning to establish itself

in Djibouti on the other side of the Bab-el-Mandeb.



Be well dear reader and take care.






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