The Middle East Powder Keg and the Great Battle for Raqqa

As events accelerate both within Syria on the battlefield and in the region, this article monitors and analyse these developments. It seeks to answer the question: do the unfolding states of affairs increase, or on the contrary decrease, the likelihood to see an intensification of Turkish escalation against the Syrian Kurds and, de facto, Northern Syria? We shall look first at the race that is taking place on the Syrian battlefield around the Battle of Raqqa and towards Deir es-Zor, there addressing furthermore the entrance of a new level of Iranian influence. We shall then turn to the evolving crisis around Qatar, pointing out notably impacts on Turkey and how  that crisis and the Battle of Raqqa feed into each other to heighten the risk to […]

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Conflict in Ukraine – Setting the Stage

The crisis in Ukraine started on 21 November 2013 with the Euromaidan protests in Kiev. Six months later, it is threatening to become a full-blown civil war with severe global impacts, unless the situation is stabilized. It is thus very important to assess the short to medium term plausible futures for this conflict, including if stabilization occurs or seem to take place, […]

The Red (Team) Analysis Weekly 144, Geopolitics also matters for businesses

Editorial – Geopolitics also matters for businesses – Among the big changes that the “Ukraine and Crimea crisis” are bringing or catalyzing, we may be seeing the end of the hegemonic belief that economics, and “business” only matter. Now that the E.U., its European members and the U.S. could be moving towards sanctions against Russia […]

The Red (Team) Analysis Weekly – 6 February 2014 – The financial system… again

Editorial – The financial system… again – The 23 January Weekly selected the contraction of the Chinese PMI as one of the signals to notice. Impacts of the China PMI drop have been felt notably in Asia, but, at least so far, not so much happened in the rest of the world. Thus, which types of warning could we […]

How to Analyze Future Security Threats (5): Scenarios and Crises

Related Towards an Operational Methodology to Analyze Future Security Threats and Political Risk (1) Methodology to Analyze Future Security Threats (2): a Game of Chess How to Analyze Future Security Threats (3): Scenarios as an Organic Living System How to Analyze Future Security Threats (4): Scenarios and War How to Analyze Future Security Threats (5): Scenarios and Crises This article is the fifth of a series looking for a methodology that would fulfill the challenging criteria demanded by our time, notably in terms of speed and resources. The previous article focused on how to build scenarios for war. This one will look at scenarios for situations qualified as non-violent crises, taking mainly as example the crisis between China and Japan in the […]

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How to Analyze Future Security Threats (4): Scenarios and War

This article is the fourth of a series looking for a methodology that would fulfill the challenging criteria demanded by our time. Having clarified with the last post the approach and mindset for the building of our scenarios, we shall now move to the practical part, how to do it, focusing here, in this post on scenarios for war, before moving to scenarios for situations qualified as non-violent crises with the next article. Mutually exclusive scenarios As a preamble, it is necessary to emphasize a crucial rule. To quote Glenn and The Futures Group International: “When a set of scenarios is prepared, each scenario usually treats the same or similar parameters, but the evolution and actual value of the parameters described in each scenario are […]

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How to Analyze Future Security Threats (3): Scenarios as an Organic Living System

This article is the third of a series looking for a methodology that would fulfill the challenging criteria demanded by our time. We shall now focus on scenarios, which are a way to simulate how the actors we defined and described during the previous step interact, not only among themselves but also with their environment, up until the end of the chosen timeframe. Using the precedent post’s game of chess analogy, with scenarios we imagine the various ways the game may “end”. Related Towards an Operational Methodology to Analyze Future Security Threats and Political Risk (1) Methodology to Analyze Future Security Threats (2): a Game of Chess How to Analyze Future Security Threats (3): Scenarios as an Organic Living System How to Analyze Future […]

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The Red (Team) Analysis Weekly No129, 5 December 2013

Editorial – A window of opportunity to regain some legitimacy? What do Hansen’s new study on the inanity of the current goals of the international community to mitigate climate change and the Council of Europe report regarding the terrible impact of austerity measures on European citizens have in common? The answer is legitimacy, or rather […]

The Red (Team) Analysis Weekly No127, 21 November 2013

Editorial – This week, three main themes stand out. They are unsurprising as we have been following them for a while, yet they show how difficult it may be to warn about an issue, i.e. to convince a client or an audience that a signal is neither noise nor anymore weak but strong (e.g. changes […]

The Red (team) Analysis Weekly No108, 11 July 2013

A glimpse into the future? As expected last week, the Egyptian events have already started impacting the world. Influence is rising and falling not only within the Arab World but also internationally, with what appears to be an American struggle to make sense of the events and respond adequately and a steadfast Russian foreign policy. Tension also rises with attacks in the Sinai, while a new outlook for the Syrian opposition could well be emerging. Domestically, the Tamarod approach reaches not only Tunisia but also Libya. Meanwhile, on twitter, the connection has started being made between Turkey and Egypt, each side supporting its counterpart in the other country.
Things seem however far from being settled in Egypt, as in the rest of the world. If the choice of El-Beblawi…

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