Towards a U.S.-China War?(2): Military Tensions in the Warming Arctic

From 1 to 28 September 2019, 3000 men and women of the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps are participating in the “Arctic Expeditionary Capabilities Exercise”. The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command leads this exercise. The exercise takes place in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska and Southern California (“Navy, Marine Corps conduct Arctic expeditionary capabilities exercise in Alaska”, […]

Quantum, AI, and Geopolitics (2): The Quantum Computing Battlefield and the Future

A race has started for quantum technologies or quantum information systems (QIS). Indeed, considering initially and notably the consequences in terms of cryptology – dubbed a “crypto-apocalypse” – no country may allow another state or a foreign company to be the first to develop quantum computing.

However, since the initial worry about cryptology somehow triggered the current quantum revolution, the situation has changed, discoveries have taken place… read more

Signal: State visit of Saudi King in Russia

Impact on Issues ➚ U.S. Decline – ➚ Russian Influence – ➘ ➃ Middle East Regional Tension – ➚➚ ➂  Global tension Among many other impacts, we shall notably stress here that this visit shows the skill of Russian diplomacy and the pertinence of Russian strategy as Russia seems to be highly likely to succeed in  maintaining and developing […]

Signals: Talks between Iraqi forces and Kurdish Peshmerga; President Barzani Steps Down; Iran…

Impact on Issues ➚ ? ➃  Short term – Willingness of Iraq to capitalize further on their military victory against the Kurds, notably capturing Kurdish oilfields (uncertainty) ? Medium to longer term – capacity of Iraq to govern legitimately over its multi-sectarian multi-ethnic population (critical uncertainty) ➚ ➃  /➄ Iraq strength and international support ➘➘➘ ➂ Legitimacy of Iraqi Kurdish […]

Militarizing the Warming Arctic – The Race to Neo-Mercantilism(s)

The warming Arctic is the stage of an ongoing maritime, geopolitical and geo-economic revolution.

For example, end of August 2018, the Danish Maersk Company, one of the major ship owners in the world and the world’s largest container shipping company by both fleet size and cargo capacity, sent a first container ship using this route, in order to test its commercial use. The ship went from Vladivostok to Saint Petersburg, through the Bering Strait, following the northern coast of Siberia (Tom Embury-Morris, “Container Ship Crosses Arctic Route for First Time in History Due to Melting Sea Ice”, The Independent, 18 September, 2018).

Since 2013, each year, the number the number of Chinese cargo convoys using the Russian Northern Sea Route, also known as the North East passage, increases thanks to the rapid warming of the region, which transforms

Artificial Intelligence and Deep Learning – The New AI-World in the Making

This article focuses on Deep Learning, the sub-field of Artificial Intelligence that leads the current exponential development of the sector. As we seek to envision how a future AI-powered world will look and what it will mean to its actors, notably in terms of politics and geopolitics, it is indeed fundamental to first understand what is AI.
We shall first give examples of how Deep Learning is used in the real world. We distinguish two types of activities: classical AI-powered activities and totally new AI-activities, related to the very emergence of DL. In both cases we shall point out their revolutionary potential.
Then, we shall take a deeper dive in the world of Deep Learning, taking as practical example the evolution of Google’s DeepMind AI-DL program initially developed to win against human Go masters: AlphaGo, then AlphaGo Zero and finally AlphaZero. After briefly presenting where DL is located within AI, we shall focus first on Deep Neural Networks and Supervised Learning. Second we shall look at the latest evolution with Deep Reinforcement Learning and start wondering if a new AI-DL paradigm, which could revolutionise the current dogma regarding the importance of Big Data, is not emerging.

Signal: Turkey and Iran discuss Iraqi Kurdish referendum

Impact on Issues ➚➚ ➁ Gulf Crisis ➚➚ ➄ Syria & Iraq Should we expect further rapprochement between Turkey and Iran, which could, in turn, further tense the Gulf crisis as well as the situation in Syria (and obviously Iraq)? Related articles Towards Renewed War in Syria? The Kurds and Turkey The Middle East Powder […]

Warning – New Issue – Will Western NGOs face Russian NGOs competition?

Impact on Issues No assessment yet How will Western NGOs be able to anticipate and face Russia’s humanitarian aid to Syria? Will Russian aid have an impact on their activities… and funding? Interesting question for the whole sector…

Signal: Mattis on Iran nuclear deal

Impact on Issues ➘ ➁ U.S. – Iran tensions The declaration by Defence Secretary Mattis could not only lower the tension between the two countries but also signal further appeasement. However, considering the current complexity of relations and dynamics within the American government and more largely political authorities, one should remain careful in estimating the […]

Signals: Russia Unveils Policy on Iraq Kurds Independence, Iraqis and Kurds discuss…

Impact on Issues ➘ ➁➀ /➄ Iraq vs Kurds – ➙ ➄ Syria  – ➘ ➀ Russia Conundrum ➚ Russia Influence – ➘ ➃ Middle East Tension – ➘ U.S. influence Note 13 Oct: Latest signal 16 Oct 2017 as situation has considerably evolved since 11 Oct, showing the essential fluid character of the dynamics ate work. A flurry of diplomatic moves, visits and […]