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Daniel Wagner

Circus Politics Is Alive and Well in the Philippines

Edsel Tupaz | Posted 07.26.2014 | Politics
Edsel Tupaz

The circus continues with the motion to impeach President Aquino, with opposition politicians having sharpened their knives in an attempt to draw some blood from the Teflon President.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 Was Shot Down for Money

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.21.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down in Ukraine last week because three crucial actors all played a role, and they all had something in common -- a desire for money.

Bahrain's Jihadist Dilemma

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.19.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

Bahrain finds itself in an increasingly untenable position. If it misplays its hand, or events in the region outpace the government's ability to manage domestic politics, the Bahraini government could find itself facing a dire crisis in the near future.

Russia, the U.S., and Preservation of the Status Quo

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.18.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Russia is a well-ingrained enemy of the U.S., and vice versa. For that reason, not too much effort is required to dust off and re-oil the propaganda machines on both sides of the Atlantic.

Dilma Is Likely to Be Reelected, So Why Are Brazilians Celebrating?

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.10.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

The wind appears to again be at Dilma Rousseff's back again, as Brazil's performance at the World Cup has virtually assured that she will be re-elected -- politics working as politics do.

Islamic Extremism in Africa

Daniel Wagner | Posted 06.25.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

In spite of all the resources devoted to fighting Somalia-based Al Shabaab in recent years, the group has grown stronger, and continues to cross the region's borders with impunity. The same is true with Boko Haram in Nigeria and Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.

Kenya, Corruption, and Terrorism

Daniel Wagner | Posted 06.19.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Kenya is too important to fail. The government knows it, and so donor governments. So its dependence on foreign aid will also continue. Let us hope that Kenya does not become part of the African Confederation of Failed States.

Paris Wants to Know: Where is U.S. Leadership in the World?

Daniel Wagner | Posted 06.06.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

While in Paris this week someone asked me when the U.S. will take a leading role in helping to resolve any number of the world's ongoing crises -- from Syria to Ukraine to the Central African Republic. My reply was that this will not happen for several reasons.

Al Qaeda's Growing Influence in Central Africa

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.30.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Judging from the gains made by both Al Shabab and Boko Haram over the past year, the CAR and its neighbors should be concerned.

Only the Tourists Can Save Thailand

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.23.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

One thing that could make a difference would be if the tourists stopped coming, prompting the exchange rate, foreign exchange reserves, and stock market to fall substantially. Perhaps, if there was enough collective pain, the red and yellow shirts would determine that it is in everyone's interest to find common ground.

Why MH370 Will Not Change Chinese/Malaysia Relations

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.20.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

In spite of the bilateral tension created by MH370, China is likely to remain cautious about taking actions that could jeopardize its partnership with Malaysia, given the country's importance in the region's geopolitical landscape and its warming relations with Washington.

Why Obama Has Foreign Policy About Right

Daniel Wagner | Posted 07.05.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

A plethora of pundits, law makers and think tanks continue to criticize the Obama Administration for presiding over what appear to be persistent failures in the foreign policy arena. Opponents are quick to attack the perceived lack of meaningful progress.

Why the West Gets Putin So Wrong

Daniel Wagner | Posted 06.10.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Putin is being consistent with his training in martial arts and the KGB -- he is disciplined, calculating, precise, and seized an opportunity that presented itself in pursuit of his objectives. His thought process is not driven by Western principles, but, rather, realpolitik.

Can the Peace Dividend Last in the Philippines?

Edsel Tupaz | Posted 05.31.2014 | World
Edsel Tupaz

Whether this Agreement has real traction and can be duly implemented will be a front burner issue in the 2016 presidential election, and President Aquino has staked significant political capital on achieving lasting peace in Mindanao.

What MH370 Says About Malaysia's Challenge

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.26.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Malaysia sits at a crossroads. The government has been widely criticized for a lack of perceived transparency, and although the legacy of semi-authoritarian rule remains strong, it's slowly changing in some fundamental ways.

Asia and Air Security

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.17.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

As has unfortunately been the case in the past, it is now taking such a tragedy to focus minds, governments, and budgets, on the problem. If this incredible story results in positive change, at least the victims of MH370 will not have died in vain.

What Israeli Airport Security Can Teach the World

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.17.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

If more airport authorities were to adopt Ben Gurion's approach, surely it would be more difficult for those intending to do harm to succeed. There is a lot to be said for emphasizing eye contact, behavioral cues, and instinct when addressing the subject of airport security.

The Geopolitics of Gay Rights in Uganda

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.06.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

Last week's passage into law of the controversial anti-gay bill in Uganda puts the country among an elite club of nations noteworthy for their backpedaling on human and civil rights. As a host of a U.S. military presence, Washington has long viewed Kampala as a strategic ally in Central and East Africa.

Ukraine: Putin, Pride and Ports

Daniel Wagner | Posted 05.02.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

The de facto expropriation of Crimea by Russia raises serious questions about the perceived legitimacy of the new government in Kiev, ethnicity in Ukraine, Russian history, Russian pride, and Russia's ability to project its power in the future.

Turkey and Iran's Growing Alliance

Daniel Wagner | Posted 04.23.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

Declaring a desire to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with Iran in combating terrorism, and driven by Turkey's evolving policy toward Syria, Erdoğan's trip highlighted Ankara and Tehran's tendency to pursue mutual interests when their paths cross.

Nostalgia for the Past Won't Cure Greece's Ills

Daniel Wagner | Posted 04.23.2014 | Politics
Daniel Wagner

With just a few months until the upcoming double elections in Greece, the political system has never been more in a state of flux across the political spectrum.

Putin's Sochi Challenge

Daniel Wagner | Posted 04.07.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

While Mr. Putin may rightly bask in the light of his many accomplishments in foreign policy, and having presided over the energy boom that thrived during much of his first term in office, he is now faced with some serious issues that cast a pall over Sochi.

Can 'Peace' Last in the Philippines?

Daniel Wagner | Posted 04.05.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Can the latest Framework Agreement create meaningful political space and perceived political participation that is inclusive enough for Christians and Muslims alike in the governance of resource-rich Mindanao?

Myanmar's Lady vs. The Dragon

Daniel Wagner | Posted 03.26.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Speculation remains high in Myanmar as to if and when opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi will travel to China, which was one of the strongest supporters of the previous military government and remains highly influential in the country's affairs.

France's 19th Century Foreign Policy Fails in 2014

Daniel Wagner | Posted 03.23.2014 | World
Daniel Wagner

Since Operation Sangaris was launched, however, the French military has proven powerless to stop the sectarian violence, which took more than a thousand lives in Bangui last month.