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Global Geopolitics

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Global Geopolitics

This course examines the global political situation from a geographical perspective. Topics include: how the countries of the world were formed and came to occupy their present territorial configurations; border conflicts and other spatially based international issues; struggles for secession from established states and movements of territorially based autonomy; and the development and enlargement of supranational organizations such as the European Union (EU) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). While the course is globally comprehensive, special attention will be given to current sites of geo-political tension. Maps will be used extensively for both descriptive and analytical purposes.
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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Bedford Wells, Feb. 14, 2012

Could Saudi Arabia and Iran Soon Engage in a Nuclear Cold War?

The controversy surrounding Iran’s nuclear program has one very important international dimension: What happens if Saudi Arabia carries out its assertion of going nuclear in response to Iran itself going nuclear? The implications are serious, because there would be little the West can do to affect the policy behaviour of a rich, oil-exporting country, let alone how it chooses to approach its relations with Iran.

For the wider region, a nuclear Iran and Saudi Arabia will certainly make Iraq, Syria, or Turkey think really hard about their relative positions. Already, Turkey is investing into building nuclear power stations, and this may translate into the militarization of nuclear energy within a decade.

http://www.policymic.com/articles/4181/could-saudi-arabia-and-iran-soon-engage-in-a-nuclear-cold-war

http://youtube.com/watch?v=QjlJm27Bbrc
Bedford Wells
Comments (2)
  • Maja A-Sweden Maja A-Sweden Feb. 15, 2012
    aaaaaah, Fox News… that explains all the paranoia.
    if Israel and Pakistan already have nuclear weapons, then why haven't they used them? Or at least, why haven't they showed them up, if only to threaten?
    With all the anciety going on around the Middle East, one would think that they'd use all of their arcenal to at least TRY and make peace…
    If Iran gets nuclear weapons it's most likely to come from Russia (whom already all too eagerly assists the middle east countries in their quest for fire arms), though I don't think that very likely, or they'll find some way to make them themselves.
  • Maja A-Sweden Maja A-Sweden Feb. 15, 2012
    what exactly does this have to do with potential nuclear wars?? O.o

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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Bedford Wells, Jan. 10, 2012

How the West is wholly missing China’s geopolitical focus

China is capitalizing on vast space for influence to its west in Central Asia - not in Asia-Pacific as perceived by the West.

http://oilandglory.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/01/09/how_the_west_is_wholly_missing_chinas_geopolitical_focus

Case in point: China’s choice of Turkmen, Kazakh and Uzbek gas imports, over importing from Russia, has forced Russia’s Gazprom to reassess its regional strategy. While Gazprom’s price negotiations with Moscow have slogged on over the last five years…five years, the China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) has cobbled together and upgraded largely existing transportation infrastructure to create the China-Central Asia gas pipeline. The resulting shift in the region’s energy geopolitics reflects China’s rise.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=TU5AS82cOJw
Bedford Wells
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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Steurt Strickland, Dec. 23, 2011

Oil and geopolitics: a turbulent year, and no end in sight

Kazakhstan unrest — violence in the western city of Zhanaozen in which some 14 protesting oil workers were killed — caps an extraordinarily turbulent year in the world’s oil regions.

The distribution of power has been shaken up in the Magreb countries of Egypt, Libya and Tunisia, and violence continues to threaten the rulers of Syria and Yemen.

Saudi Arabia is spending some $130 billion to stave off its own public dissatisfaction.

In Russia, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s seemingly unassailable hold on power has been challenged by a botched decision to return to the Kremlin, and a rigged parliamentary election.

All in all, the uprisings have helped to push annual average oil prices to their highest level in history, exceeding $100 a barrel.

Look for the global turbulence to continue well into next year… good analysis at the URL:

http://oilandglory.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2011/12/22/oil_and_geopolitics_a_turbulent_year_and_no_end_in_sight

This week’s eyewitness video of police killing and beating of protesting Kazakhstan oil workers

http://youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=XKXzcylIjPE
Steurt Strickland
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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Ria Deamonte, Dec. 20, 2011

Richard Weitz, the Director of the Center for Political-Military Analysis at the Hudson Institute, says that the US government has concerns over a power struggle following Kim Jong-il’s death on Monday, which could seriously affect geopolitical relations for all major powers in the world.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=XGcA7hLkSxA
Ria Deamonte
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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Bedford Wells, Nov. 26, 2011

Iran threatens to target NATO missile shield in Turkey if attacked by US or Israel.

Tensions have been rising between Iran and the West since the release of a report earlier this month by the International Atomic Energy Agency that said for the first time that Tehran was suspected of conducting secret experiments whose sole purpose was the development of nuclear arms. Israel, which views Tehran as an existential threat, has warned of a possible strike on Iran’s nuclear program. Iran says its program is for peaceful purposes.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle-east/iran-threatens-to-target-nato-missile-shield-in-turkey-if-attacked-by-us-or-israel/2011/11/26/gIQA1R7jyN_story.html

Tensions have increased in recent weeks between Iran and the U.S., with several American neoconservatives urging the Obama administration to use covert action against Iran and kill some of its top officials, including General Ghassem Soleimani, chief of Iran’s elite Quds Force.

Critical, skeptical, view of the authenticity that Iran isbuilding a bomb follows…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2w7J59FPmQ
Bedford Wells
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Discussions Discussion Global Geopolitics
Steve Durgan, Nov. 24, 2011

On Nov. 17th, Washington announced the creation of the new Bureau of Energy Resources within the U.S. State Department. The geopolitical aspects of the oil and natural gas sector have a direct impact on the economic interest of the United States. The task of the new bureau is to address foreign policy, security and economic issues related to oil and gas over the next 25 years.

http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Energy-Resources/2011/11/17/US-ties-geopolitics-to-energy/UPI-60771321542985/?spt=hs&or=er

Here’s a summary of one of the leading books on the Geopolitics of Energy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-BHy97B-nU
Steve Durgan
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