May 2015

Will Russia join China’s AIIB as an ‘Asian’ member?

The sizes of the equity stakes that members plan to take in the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) keeps changing as more countries join and their designations change. A South Korean news agency also reports a diplomatic source as saying that  China will allow Russia to join the AIIB as an “Asian” member with greater voting rights than non-Asian nations.

How British Elections Represent the State of Europe

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By George Friedman

The United Kingdom is going to the polls on Thursday. Elections electrify the countries in which they are held, but in most cases they make little difference. In this case, the election is a bit more important. Whether Labour or the Tories win makes some difference, but not all that much. What makes this election significant is that in Scotland, 45 percent of the public voted recently to leave the United Kingdom. This has been dismissed as an oddity by all well-grounded observers. However, for unsophisticated viewers like myself, the fact that 45 percent of Scotland was prepared to secede was an extraordinary event.

China Takes Stock of U.S.-Japan Alliance as Abe Speaks to Congress

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By Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga

As Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits the United States on April 26-May 3, all eyes in China are watching how Abe speaks about ongoing historical memory issues and how he is strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance. By revising the defense guidelines on April 27 and speaking in front of a joint session of Congress on April 29—the first time for a Japanese leader—Abe made arguably the most high-profile visit ever by a Japanese prime minister to the United States.