Why China will “reclaim” Siberia | China Daily Mail

English: Map of Russian federal subjects belon...

English: Map of Russian federal subjects belonging to Siberia.         Siberian Federal District,          Geographic Russian Siberia ,           Historical Siberia (and present Siberia in some usages). Esperanto: La mapo de subjektoj de Rusia Federacia, rilatantaj al Sibirj. Русский: Карта субъектов Российской Федерации, относящихся к Сибири. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is a fascinating article published by the China Daily Mail, originally sourced from the NYT.

Why China will “reclaim” Siberia | China Daily Mail

The article speculates that China will one day use typical Russian policies to annex Siberia. Firstly, it would offer Chinese passports to Siberians and then it would annex Siberia to protect Chinese passport holders.

Personally, I find it rather far-fetched. But Siberia would be strategically attractive in terms of both mineral resources and massive space for the Chinese population.

Of course, with Western sanctions, Russia will not want to speculate on Chinese territorial expansion into Siberia. These days, with Russia dependent on mineral wealth, largely from Siberia, this would be a catastrophe scenerio for Russia.

Thoughts?

Europe’s Patchwork Foreign Policy Needs More Than a Few New Stitches | The German Marshall Fund of the United States

English: The Fall of the Berlin Wall, 1989. Th...

English: The Fall of the Berlin Wall, 1989. The photo shows a part of a public photo documentation wall at Former Check Point Charlie, Berlin. The photo documentation is permanently placed in the public. Türkçe: Berlin Duvarı, 1989 sonbaharı (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is an excellent piece of research by the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Open the link and download the PDF article.

via Europe’s Patchwork Foreign Policy Needs More Than a Few New Stitches | The German Marshall Fund of the United States.

Essentially, the article focuses on Europe’s patchwork foreign and defense policy but Europe is losing out on effective leverage in the world. The article explores the pull of national sovereignty. Overall, the article calls for a more strategic approach to both foreign and defense policies.

Sadly, Europe is weak on strategy across the board, especially in areas like economic management and energy.

It’s plain to see that countries like China, Russia and the US still prefer bilateral relationships. Meanwhile, Germany, France and the UK are intensely competitive in trying to win trade concessions with China for their own countries.

Personally, much as I admire modern Germany, I feel that Germany’s leadership of Europe has been deeply flawed and based on German self-interest. Since 2008, Germany has had an enormous windfall advantage from the Euro. But Germany’s growth is likely to tail off and the UK and France are likely to become much more powerful again.

Overall, I cannot see Europe becoming sufficiently decisive to indentify and adopt a winning strategy. With or without Angela Merkel Europe will muddle through.

Thoughts?