EsadeGeo Daily Digest, 09/07/2020

Archivo:Taipei Skyline 2015.jpg - Wikipedia, la enciclopedia libre

Foreign Affairs – Michael Green and Evan Medeiros / Is Taiwan the next Hong Kong?

  • U.S. policymakers must consider more than Hong Kong when formulating their response. A tepid U.S. reaction could leave Beijing with the impression that it can proceed with relative impunity on other contentious issues in Asia. 
  • The shadow of Taiwan looms large in this context. Unless the US demonstrates the resolve and ability to resist Chinese coercion and aggression, China’s leaders may eventually conclude that the risks and the costs of future military action against Taiwan are low.
  • There isn’t a straight line from Hong Kong to Taiwan. A Chinese assault on the island is neither imminent nor inevitable. But Beijing’s recent actions in Hong Kong—and elsewhere in Asia—raise worrying questions about its increasing willingness to use coercive tactics. 
  • Hong Kong and Taiwan have more in common than many analysts appreciate, both in the view of Beijing and in the sentiments of their citizens. The democracy movement that has so united the citizens of Hong Kong and Taiwan has allies in other parts of Asia too.
  • Foreign Policy – Lev Nachman, Nathan Kar Ming Chan and Chit Wai John Mok / Hong Kongers say Taiwan is their first choice as exile looms

Euractiv – Vlagyiszlav Makszimov / ‘Uncensored’ debate features three speeches and no dissenting voices

  • Leaders of Hungary, Serbia and Slovenia spoke of the threat of regional conflicts and the need to reestablish the power-balance in Europe in the wake of Brexit and COVID-19 crisis during an online conference on Wednesday (8 July).
  • The debate — described as being “without useless political correctness, without taboos, completely uncensored” by the organiser — was moderated by François-Xavier Bellamy, a philosophy teacher from Versailles who became an EPP MEP.
  • Vučić expressed his support for further European defence integration, saying that “in the future, Serbia, will be very ready to be supportive and to be a part of a bigger united European military strength than it used to be, than it is.”
  • Brexit was high on the agenda for Slovenia’s anti-immigration prime minister, Janez Janša, who said that “Brexit is a strategic catastrophe.” Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán also pointed to a shift in the power balance in Europe with the UK’s departure.
  • The Guardian – Shaun Walker / Violence at Belgrade protest over government’s handling of lockdown

Financial Times – Janan Ganesh / The real threat to liberalism will come after Trump

  • That Mr Trump’s successors will retain the substance of his views, even harden them, is plain enough. A base that is still mesmerised by his nativism will punish much deviation from it.
  • If anything new does emerge, however, it will be an emphasis on governmental competence. Its absence has been the salvation of liberals in recent years.
  • Those who are expected to jostle for the Republican candidacy in 2024 are of Mr Trump’s persuasion, but not of his background. Most are more culturally conservative than the president and all are better-equipped to turn their instincts into law.
  • This, far more than Mr Trump, is the liberal nightmare: a populist agenda in the hands of insiders. The trouble starts when those with institutional knowledge embrace the same programme. And that trouble is coming.
  • The Atlantic – Michael Schuman / Why China wants Trump to win

Politico – Arthur Neslen / How Europe could help save the Earth by selling it

  • As the EU aims to become climate-neutral by 2050, the bloc is looking for ways to reduce emissions, or even remove them from the atmosphere through carbon sequestration, and therefore some see healthy soil as key.
  • A solution for reaching Europe’s Green Deal goals could be right under Brussels’ nose — or rather, its feet. One concept literally gaining ground worldwide is carbon farming, where farmers use certain techniques to capture and store more carbon in their soil.
  • Schemes to financially reward farmers for doing so are already being tested in some European countries, some through nongovernmental initiatives.
  • Around 51 billion tons of CO2-equivalent is stored in the topsoil of the EU’s farms and fields. By comparison, the bloc’s total annual emissions of CO2-equivalent amount to 4 billion tons.
  • The Guardian – Damian Carrington / Spreading rock dust on fields could remove vast amounts of CO2 from air

Today’s long read:

The selected pieces do not necessarily reflect the views of Javier Solana and EsadeGeo. The summaries above may include word-for-word excerpts from their respective pieces.

Política Internacional |