George Friedman

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George Friedman
About the author:

Founder, chief intelligence officer, financial overseer, and CEO of Stratfor.

Why Russia & The US Must Work Together On Ukraine

Date: 2 April 2014

Despite their current animosities, Russia and the U.S. need each other to maintain influence in Eastern Europe. For different reasons, neither side wants the crisis to continue, and each has a different read on the situation.

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Ukraine’s Real Problems Have Yet To Be Addressed

Date: 25 February 2014

There should be no mistake – the Yanukovich government in Ukraine was rotten to the core, and he will not be missed. But revolutions are much easier to make than to recover from. Ukraine’s political and economic woes may be so problematic that another Yanukovich may emerge or the government may have little choice but to turn back to Russia.

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Why The US & Iran Need Each Other

Date: 13 November 2013

The ongoing talks between U.S. and Iran politicians over the Islamic state’s nuclear program – and the resulting sanctions – signal a major shift in their bilateral relations. But there is more at stake for the two countries, rather than just these issues. Iran will need the U.S.’s help to repair its economy, while America sees Iran as an opportunity to manage its interests in the Middle East.

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US-Europe Relations: Growing Apart?

Date: 25 September 2013

The U.S.-Europe “friendship” helped shape the 20th century; but as Europe becomes increasingly fragmented – while showing greater divergence to American foreign policy, as demonstrated with the Syrian issue – does a strong transatlantic relationship still bear any significance in the 21st century?

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Can Fear Necessarily Justify The Violation Of Rights?: George Friedman

Date: 6 August 2013

U.S. missions across the Middle East and Africa will remain closed until the end of the week for fear that terrorist cell al Qaeda will launch an attack to mark the end of Ramadan. Calling it one of the most specific and credible threats since 9/11, U.S. lawmakers say the preemptive move would not have been possible if not for electronic intercepts by the National Security Agency. Do such threats legitimise the need for NSA’s surveillance programme which has become hotly debated since the revelations made by former contractor Edward Snowden?  

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Has The Chinese Growth Miracle Hit A Wall?: George Friedman

Date: 25 July 2013

The mainstream debate on China has shifted from forecasts of how quickly China will overtake the United States to considerations of what the consequences of a Chinese crash would be.  Following weeks of financial drama and weak economic data, the signs are now unmistakable: China is in big trouble, and the problems in its economy are deeper and even more fundamental than previously thought. 

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Germany’s Dangerous Gamble On The Cyprus Bailout: George Friedman

Date: 28 March 2013

Since announcing the Cyprus bailout on March 25, the European Union, and by de facto Germany, have been keen to emphasise the uniqueness of Nicosia’s situation – downplaying a repeat for any other eurozone nation. The question, of course, is whether foreign depositors in European banks will accept that Cyprus was one of a kind. Indeed, we must ask ourselves why the Germans would have created this risk in the first place.

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Is The US-Israel ‘Marriage’ Breaking Up?: George Friedman

Date: 20 March 2013

As domestic issues continue to weigh heavily on the minds of American and Israeli leaders, the foundations for their alliance have gradually withered ahead of Barack Obama’s first visit to Israel as president this week. There has therefore been a very real, if somewhat subtle shift, in the U.S.-Israeli relationship. Neither party is what it once was; and in the end, each has its own fate, linked by history to each other but no longer united.

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Will Europe’s Unemployment Crisis Spark A Return For Fascism? : George Friedman

Date: 8 March 2013

Fascism had its roots in Europe, during the 1920s and 1930s, in massive economic failures in which the financial elites failed to recognize the political consequences of unemployment. While history may not repeat itself so neatly, the emergence of new political parties speaking for the unemployed and the newly poor could lead to governments who enclose their economies from the world and manage their performance through directive and manipulation.

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North Korea’s Brilliant Bluff – Why Kim Still Holds All The Trump Cards: George Friedman

Date: 30 January 2013

For years, North Korea has been using nuclear tests as an existential ‘threat’ against its neighbours and the United States. Yet despite the nation’s weak economy and technologically inferior military, successive leaders have somehow managed to manoeuvre themselves into powerful bargaining positions with the world’s superpowers. The North Korean strategy is simple and ingenious: by portraying itself as weak, yet ferocious and crazy, international players are unable to predict the result of any engagement – allowing the North Korean regime to survive another day.

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Could Europe’s Social Crisis Overshadow Its Economic Woes In 2013?: George Friedman

Date: 7 January 2013

For close to three years, the primary focus of European leaders has been to solve the region’s banking and sovereign debt crisis, which have caused a serious weakening of the economy and created massive unemployment in some countries. The same leaders however faces a larger problem in 2013: how to manage the social unrest across the continent as a direct consequence to the [mis]handling of the economic crisis.

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Catalonia’s Calls For Independence – Can Parallels Be Drawn With Gaza?

Date: 29 November 2012

Barcelona (in Catalonia) and Gaza (in Palestinian territories) may be roughly 3,000km apart, yet the independence movements rising from both regions share similar roots; The idea of romantic nationalism has driven their inhabitants to challenge the legitimacy of their ruling state, demanding liberation and the right to their own authentic nationalism.

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Behind The Narrow Margins Of Victory In US Presidential Elections: George Friedman

Date: 31 October 2012

American presidential elections have historically been close affairs; with just four presidential candidates in the past have receiving more than 60 percent of votes across the electorate. But while the American electorate may appear to be deeply and persistently divided, the reality is that most elections are simply elections of relative indifference.

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Is A New US Foreign Policy Doctrine Emerging?: George Friedman

Date: 12 October 2012

In the aftermath of its disastrous invasion of Iraq back in 2003, the U.S. has learnt critical lessons on the consequences of intervention, which has led to the emergence of a new foreign policy doctrine based on 'reality'. As demonstrated by its actions in Libya, Syria and possibly Iran, the U.S. now appears to have entered a period in which it has moved from military domination to more subtle manipulation; and more importantly, they have begun to allow events to take their course.

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Why Personality, And Not Policies, Should Determine Elections: George Friedman

Date: 7 September 2012

During any election, most political observers would want to see candidates engage in intense debate over policy issues, with matters of personality and character being pushed to the background. But in some ways, a candidate’s character may actually be more important than his policies when he assumes a country's leadership; while the idea that you should vote for a leader based on his policy intentions could be inherently flawed.

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Germany Will Make An Example Of Greece: George Friedman

Date: 3 February 2012

Germany is caught in a dilemma. On the one hand, while the Germans cannot afford austerity in troubled states due to the resulting decline in demand for German goods, cannot simply tolerate Greek-style indifference to fiscal prudence as well. In dealing with other countries such as Spain or Italy, Germany must now show with Greece that there are consequences to not complying with the orderly handling of debt without default.

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Forget Finance, Europe’s Next Crisis Will Be Political In Nature: George Friedman

Date: 28 November 2011

The European Union project is facing its biggest test. Regardless of whether the next immediate European crisis is focused on Spain or Italy, it follows that by mid-decade, Europe’s political landscape will have shifted dramatically, with new parties, personalities and values emerging. As such, the real question, therefore, is not how the financial crisis works out. It is whether the European project will survive.

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The Shifting Sands of Power In The Middle East: George Friedman

Date: 23 November 2011

As the US readies itself for a complete withdrawal from Iraq by the end of the year, the rest of the Middle East have also been preparing for this eventuality. The dynamics between Iran, Iraq, Syria and Israel could determine the future of the region as Washington’s influence becomes increasingly distant and irrelevant.

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