Glasses on a pile of books

Best of the fortnight - 28 July 2023

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Guest Editor Louis Newstead has scoured the internet for IR-related content that might interest you. Here he brings you the past fortnight's best readings and podcasts to keep you up to date with what's happening around the world.

Global Issues

UN should be learning from sustainable food producers – not hosting Big Ag. Shalmali Guttal and Sofia Monsalve for openDemocracy

Podcast: Artificial intelligence – a threat to democracy? Independent Thinking from Chatham House

UK and Europe

The UK’s island identity has long shaped its political outlook – is that why it currently feels so adrift? Nick Whittaker for The Conversation

Reading Erdoğan: The demand for EU entry is more than bluster. Philip Balboni for Responsible Statecraft

Blockaded Nagorno-Karabakh is running out of food, fuel and hope. Bashir Kitachayev for openDemocracy

Russia and Ukraine

Ukraine war: how Russians are rallying on the home front to support ‘their boys’. Anna Matveeva for The Conversation

Ukraine war: ‘joke’ about Wagner Group invading Poland highlights regional security fears of rogue mercenaries. Natasha Lindstaedt for The Conversation

Ukraine war: Crimean bridge attack is another blow to Putin’s strongman image. Stefan Wolff for The Conversation

Ukraine war: Wagner Group boss and Belarus’s president are still manoeuvring for power. Jennifer Mathers for The Conversation


Cutting US aid to Israel won’t cure what ills. Matthew Petti for Responsible Statecraft

US-Korea policy: Is it all about China? Robert Ross for Responsible Statecraft

Can Washington discourage South Korea from wanting its own nukes? Jae-Jung Suh for Responsible Statecraft

The State Department’s a mess — just like its Afghanistan report. Gordon Adams for Responsible Statecraft

Latin America

Uruguay’s missing women may have been trafficked. Why doesn’t the state care? Angelina De Los Santos for openDemocracy

EU talks show Latin America’s growing influence in global politics. Manuella Libardi & Francesc Badia I Dalmases for openDemocracy

Central America’s Turbulent Northern Triangle. Diana Roy and Amelia Cheatham for Council on Foreign Relations


 Xi’s Security Obsession: Why China Is Digging In at Home and Asserting Itself Abroad. Sheena Chestnut Greitens for Foreign Affairs

Why America Forgets—and China Remembers—the Korean War. Mike Gallagher and Aaron MacLean for Foreign Affairs

Qin Gang's Removal Puts the Focus on Xi Jinping's Leadership. Ian Johnson for Council on Foreign Relations


Cambodia’s Elections: No Surprises, but an Uncertain Leadership Future. Joshua Kurlantzick for Council on Foreign Relations

Is China building a military base in Cambodia? John Pollock nand Damien Symon for Chatham House

India’s Efforts to Strengthen Indian Ocean Security. Manjari Chatterjee Miller and Clare Harris for Council on Foreign Relations

Opportunities and Challenges for South Korea-U.S. Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific. Kuyoun Chung for Council on Foreign Relations

Middle East

Israel: unpopular judicial reform involves repeal of law set up under British colonial rule in Palestine – here’s what that tells us. Anne Irfan for The Conversation

Syria’s attempts to rejoin the international fold are far from convincing – here’s why. Scott Lucas for The Conversation

The Conflict in Yemen Is More Than a Proxy War. Ahmed Nagi for Foreign Affairs

Iraq’s president says only diplomacy will solve region’s ‘real issues’. Tanya Goudsouzian for Responsible Statecraft

Defeated and Detained, Islamic State Still Poses Extremism Threat. Kali Robinson for Council on Foreign Relations

Why the West won’t let Afghanistan define itself. Hameed Hakimi for Chatham House


Will crackdown on Mali over Wagner mercenaries actually do anything? Alex Thurston for Responsible Statecraft

The West harms queer Africans by failing to hold its own people accountable. Khatondi Soita Wepukhulu for openDemocracy

Will South Africa’s Power Crisis Sink Its Green Ambitions? Mariel Ferragamo for Council on Foreign Relations


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