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Crossing the Line At Odd Times: China-India Border Disputes
By Jeff M. Smith, Foreign Policy, October 16, 2014

Last month yet another standoff at the disputed China-India border reached yet another peaceful conclusion, though not before spoiling the atmosphere of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s inaugural visit to India. In mid-September, as many as 1,000 Chinese soldiers crossed the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh, Kashmir and were met in a prolonged face-off by an equal number of Indian troops. While violations of the de facto border are a common affair, the conspicuous timing and motives of the latest intrusion, and its broader implications for Sino-Indian relations, merit greater scrutiny.


Giving Iran The Store
By Lawrence J. Haas, U.S. News & World Report, October 7, 2014

Monday's reported explosion at Iran's secretive Parchin nuclear site - leaving two dead and shattering windows 12 kilometers away - is welcome news to those concerned about Tehran's nuclear progress, but it's likely a mere blip on what seems an increasingly smooth Iranian road to nuclear weaponry. 

For a host of reasons, Washington is growing ever-more desperate for a nuclear deal through which to claim a diplomatic victory, while Tehran is growing less concerned about the ultimate outcome of the ongoing talks and, not surprisingly, more intransigent about offering new concessions. 

Closed Door Policy: How China's Reforms Are Pushing Away Foreign Business
By Joshua Eisenman, Foreign Affairs, September 24, 2014

"We shall proceed with reform and opening up without hesitation," said Chinese President Xi Jinping to his country's top leaders at a symposium last month that marked the 110th birth anniversary of his predecessor Deng Xiaoping. At first glance, his pledge appeared sincere. In the two years since taking office, Xi has consistently advocated a reform agenda intended to continue the economic revitalization and restructuring that Deng started in 1978. Xi’s campaign includes plans to reduce government meddling in the economy by making it easier for private-sector firms to compete with state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and allowing companies and individuals to invest and borrow more freely. 

Horror And Terror In Nigeria
By Lawrence J. Haas, U.S. News & World Report, September 23, 2014

She was at her high school in Chibok, Nigeria when the Islamist monsters of Boko Haram arrived in April, brandishing their guns and forcing the girls onto trucks for an unknown destination. 

Fearing where the trucks would take them, she and a friend jumped off during the trip, scampering into the forest. With her friend injured from the fall, they slept under a tree and then found a shepherd to help them find their way back to their village, where their parents and other relatives were weeping. 

Putting The Islamic State In Proper Context
By Ilan Berman,, September 17, 2014

Quite suddenly, all eyes are riveted on the Islamic State (IS). Ever since its self-proclaimed “emir,” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared the creation of a new “caliphate” during a speech in Mosul, Iraq this June, his group has become global public enemy number one. 

Latest In-House Bulletins

Russia Reform Monitor - No. 1930
October 9, 2014

Jitters in Poland... and an emerging U.S.-Russian sub race;
Moscow’s plan to defend ethnic Russians



Russia Reform Monitor - No. 1929
October 8, 2014

Putin versus the Internet;
A new nuclear ally in Africa

China Reform Monitor - No. 1126
October 8, 2014

University of Chicago latest to shutter Confucius Institute;
China ready to invest in Russia-occupied Crimea



South Asia Security Monitor - No. 351
October 8, 2014

PM Modi visits the US;
Pakistan, China conduct bilateral naval exercise;
Pakistan endorses BSA;
India-Pakistan border violence

China Reform Monitor - No. 1125
October 6, 2014


Beijing wants more Han-minority marriages;
China-India border standoff



Latest Policy Papers

Protecting the Warfighter in an Austere Budget Environment
By David J. Trachtenberg , September 24, 2014

Winston Churchill is often quoted as saying, “Gentlemen, we have run out of money. Now we have to think.” A similar statement is attributed to Ernest Rutherford, a New Zealand physicist often cited as the “father” of nuclear physics. Regardless of who uttered this quote, many believe it appropriately summarizes the state of America’s defense establishment today. “Fiscal austerity” is the environment in which national security decisions are made...

Security and Defense Dimensions of the Asia Pivot
By Dr. Peter Brookes , May 14, 2014

There is no question that the United States faces significant and increasing security challenges in the Asia-Pacific region, including the growing threat posed by ballistic missiles and their payloads. It is fair to argue that China is increasingly confident and assertive in addressing its perceived national interests, supported by its expanding military might and power projection capabilities. From appearances, it is also reasonable to assert that North Korea is not on a path to openness, reform, and reconciliation with its neighbors. As such, it is critical that the United States provide for its national defense in the Pacific...