The Center on International Cooperation (CIC) has appointed Sarah F. Cliffe as its new Director. Ms. Cliffe will take up the Director position on January 1st 2015. Until January 1st 2015, Barnett Rubin will continue to serve as Acting Director. Former CIC Director Bruce Jones has taken up a position at the Brookings Institution as Deputy Director for Foreign Policy, and additionally was recently appointed to serve on the Secretary-General's High-level Independent Panel of Experts on Peace Operations.
One hundred and seventy soldiers, 50 degree heat, 10 months away from home and 700 individual missions to complete. This all adds up to one of the toughest deployments in recent Chinese military history, undertaken by the first batch of People's Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers sent on a UN peacekeeping operation in the war-torn West African country of Mali.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, at least among American political analysts, that the struggle against violent Islamist extremism is back in play as an organizing principle in international affairs.
There are reasons to think that Africa may be a place where prospects of Sino-European cooperation are promising. EU members – and above all France – continue to play an active role in crisis management in weak African states like Mali, Somalia, and the Central African Republic.
Russia and China are good friends these days. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Moscow last week and, by signing a bundle of economic agreements, demonstrated Beijing’s disregard for Western sanctions on Russia over Ukraine. Early in the Ukrainian conflict, American and European officials hoped that Beijing would take steps to penalize Russia over its annexation of Crimea. But it has confined itself to token complaints, while reinforcing its trade relations with its northern neighbor.
Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai was inaugurated as president of Afghanistan on Sept. 29, 2014, after a three-month-long dispute over the outcome of the June 14 runoff election. A Sept. 21 agreement between Ghani and runner-up Abdullah Abdullah provided for the establishment of a national unity government and created a new position: chief executive officer, held by Abdullah. It also contained long-term provisions to allow for permanently establishing the office of executive prime minister, institutionalizing the role created for Abdullah by decree.