To Start Page

Voice of Diaspora


Important News, Belangrijke nieuws, Nouvelles importantes, Wichtige News, Fontos hírek, Importanti novitŕ, Pomembne novice, Importante Notícias, Viktiga nyheter

Ing. Salih CAVKIC

Prof. dr. Murray Hunter
University Malaysia Perlis

20 Years to Trade Economic Independence for Political Sovereignty - Eva MAURINA


Aleš Debeljak +
In Defense of Cross-Fertilization: Europe and Its Identity Contradictions - Aleš Debeljak



Rattana Lao
Rattana Lao holds a doctorate in Comparative and International Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and is currently teaching in Bangkok.

Bakhtyar Aljaf
Director of Middle-East and Balkan Studies (IFIMES) in Ljubljana, Slovenia

Rakesh Krishnan Simha
Géométrie variable of a love triangle – India, Russia and the US

Amna Whiston
Amna Whiston is a London-based writer specialising in moral philosophy. As a PhD candidate at Reading University, UK, her main research interests are in ethics, rationality, and moral psychology.

Eirini Patsea 
Eirini Patsea is a Guest Editor in Modern Diplomacy, and specialist in Cultural Diplomacy and Faith-based Mediation

Belmir Selimovic
Can we trust the government to do the right thing, are they really care about essential things such as environmental conditions and education in our life?


Dubravko Lovrenović + Univ. prof. Dubravko Lovrenović is one of the leading European Medievalist specialized in the Balkans, pre-modern and modern political history.

Manal Saadi
Postgraduate researcher in International Relations and Diplomacy at the Geneva-based UMEF University

doc.dr.Jasna Cosabic
professor of IT law and EU law at Banja Luka College,
Bosnia and Herzegovina

Aleksandra Krstic
Studied in Belgrade (Political Science) and in Moscow (Plekhanov’s IBS). Currently, a post-doctoral researcher at the Kent University in Brussels (Intl. Relations). Specialist for the MENA-Balkans frozen and controlled conflicts.


Dr. Swaleha Sindhi is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Administration, the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, India. Decorated educational practitioner Dr. Sindhi is a frequent columnist on related topics, too. She is the Vice President of Indian Ocean Comparative Education Society (IOCES). Contact:

Barçın Yinanç
 It is an Ankara-based journalist and notable author. She is engaged with the leading Turkish dailies and weeklies for nearly three decades as a columnist, intervieweer and editor. Her words are prolifically published and quoted in Turkish, French an English.

Modified from the original: They killed 1 Saddam and created 1,000 others (Daily Sabah)

Aine O’Mahony
Aine O'Mahony has a bachelor in Law and Political Science at the Catholic Institute of Paris and is currently a master's student of Leiden University in the International Studies programme.Contact:

Elodie Pichon

  Elodie Pichon has a  bachelor in Law and Political Science at the Catholic Institute of Paris and is currently doing a MA in Geopolitics, territory and Security at King's College London. Contact :

Qi Lin

Qi Lin, a MA candidate of the George Washington University, Elliott School of International Affairs. Her research focus is on cross-Pacific security and Asian studies, particularly on the Sino-U.S. relations and on the foreign policy and politics of these two.

Born in Chile and raised in Rome, Alessandro Cipri has just finished his postgraduate studies at the department of War Studies of King's College London, graduating with distinction from the Master's Degree in "Intelligence and International Security". Having served in the Italian Army's "Alpini" mountain troops, he has a keen interest in national security, military strategy, insurgency theory, and terrorism studies. His Master's dissertation was on the impact of drug trafficking on the evolution of the Colombian FARC.

Ms. Lingbo ZHAO
is a candidate of the Hong Kong Baptist University, Department of Government and International Studies. Her research interest includes Sino-world, Asia and cross-Pacific.



Hannes Grassegger
Hannes Grassegger and Mikael Krogerus are investigative journalists attached to the Swiss-based Das Magazin specialized journal.


Mikael Krogerus

Hannes Grassegger and Mikael Krogerus are investigative journalists attached to the Swiss-based Das Magazin specialized journal.


Michal Kosinski

Scientific analysis


Elodie Pichon,
Ms. Elodie Pichon, Research Fellow of the IFIMES Institute, DeSSA Department. This native Parisian is a Master in Geopolitics, Territory and Security from the King’s College, London, UK.

Djoeke Altena

Muhamed Sacirbey
Muhamed Sacirbey

Ambassador Muhamed Sacirbey currently lectures on Digital-Diplomacy. "Mo" has benefited from a diverse career in investment banking & diplomacy, but his passion has been the new avenues of communication. He was Bosnia & Herzegovina's first Ambassador to the United Nations, Agent to the International Court of Justice, Foreign Minister & Signatory of the Rome Statute establishing the International Criminal Court. He also played American football opting for a scholarship to Tulane University in New Orleans after being admitted to Harvard, oh well!!

Amanda Janoo

Amanda Janoo is an Alternative Economic Policy Adviser to governments and development organizations. Graduate from Cambridge University with an MPhil in Development Studies, Amanda worked at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) supporting government's with evidence-based industrial policy design for inclusive and sustainable growth. Her research focus is on the relationship between international trade and employment generation. She has worked throughout Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa promoting greater economic self-determination and empowerment.

Michael dr. Logies,


Endy Bayuni

The writer, editor-in-chief of The Jakarta Post, took part in the Bali Civil Society and Media Forum, organized by the Institute for Peace and Democracy and the Press Council, on Dec.5-6.

Élie Bellevrat
Élie Bellevrat is the WEO Energy Analysts

 Kira West
 Kira West is the WEO Energy Analysts

Victor Davis Hanson NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won.

Alexander Savelyev - Chief Research Fellow at the Primakov Institute of World Economy and International Relations (Moscow, Russia). In 1989-1991 was a member of Soviet negotiating team at START-1 negotiations (Defense and Space Talks).

Ingrid Stephanie Noriega
Ingrid Stephanie Noriega is junior specialist in International Relations, Latina of an immense passion for human rights, democratic accountability, and conflict resolution studies as it relates to international development for the Latin America and Middle East – regions of her professional focus.

Syeda Dhanak Fatima Hashmi
Author is a Foreign Policy Analyst and Research Head at a think tank based in Islamabad. She has done Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.) in Governance and Public Policy. Her areas of research include both regional as well as global issues of contemporary international relations.

Pia Victoria Poppenreiter

Davos: The Other Side of the Mirror
An “inventor, startup guru, conceptualist and CEO” hangs out at the world’s four-day power lunch

Jomo Kwame Sundaram,
a former economics professor, was United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development, and received the Wassily Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economic Thought.

Dr. Guy Millière, a professor at the University of Paris, is the author of 27 books on France and Europe. Earlier version published by the GeterstoneInstitute under the title France Slowly Sinking into Chaos

Mr. Masato Abe, specialist at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Corneliu PIVARIU is highly decorated two star general of the Romanina army (ret.).
For the past two decades, he successfully led one of the most infuential magazines on geopolitics and internatinal relations in Eastern Europe – bilingual journal ‚Geostrategic Pulse’.

An early version of this text appeared as the lead editorial in the The Geostrategic Pulse (No. 268/20.11.2018), a special issue dedicated to the Centennial anniversary.

INDEX 2017

INDEX 2016

Important News

Dutch - Nederlands
Belangrijke nieuws

French - Français
Nouvelles importantes

German - Deutsch
Wichtige News

Važne vijesti



Hong Kong:
No more China’s disheartened capitalism, please

Wan T. Lee

Yuan T. Lee 1-1.jpgHong Kong's unrest started in June 2019. It was triggered by the plans to allow extradition to mainland China. Critics felt this could compromise judicial autonomy and jeopardize free-speech legacy.
Until 1997, Hong Kong was under the British rule as an overseas territory (effectively a colony), but then returned under the mainland China jurisdiction. Under the Deng’s "one country, two systems" arrangement, it has considerable autonomy, and Hongkongers (Mandarin: 香港人) enjoy comparatively more civic rights.

The controversial bill was finally withdrawn in September 2019. Under the slogan ‘too little too late’, the demonstrations continued, growing even larger. Protesters now demand full democracy and an independent inquiry into police actions.

Lately, clashes between police and activists have turned worryingly violent; police firing rubber bullets and occasionally even live rounds, while protesters counter-attacking officers by throwing stones and petrol bombs.

Generational and Class struggle is back?

What still remains rather underreported are social and generational dimensions of the protests. Hence, it indeed feels to comment on some distorting interpretations and oversimplified views.
As an illustration, one can take reporting such as James A. Dorn’s columns (eg. “If protesters want to protect Hong Kong’s way of life, they must win the war of ideas”). This author is cited as a China specialist. Essentially, he is a senior fellow of the Cato Institute, a conservative think tank similar to The Heritage Foundation, which often declares Hong Kong the “world’s freest economy”, even though Hong Kong’s working class endures horrid living conditions here.

Authors like him allude to a “war of ideas” and do criticise socialism with Chinese characteristics, even though China has made tremendous economic progress and enjoyed political stability. One wonders why such views and opinions about Hong Kong or China should be considered or adopted.

China has not dictated how the US or other Western countries should run their economies or political systems, nor has it solicited advice from these free market theoreticians or think tanks. China has lifted at least half a billion people out of poverty, helping to alleviate poverty globally.

Another country which has done exceptionally well and which has not subscribed to neoliberal dogma but retains strong state control of the economy and political freedom is Singapore.

Hong Kong’s main problem is that the sacrosanct free market has become a political excuse for government non-interference, allowing tycoons and big businesses to freely game the system, gorge themselves on Hong Kong’s resources and create large wealth disparities that have contributed to our current social and political instability.

This neither alleviated the suffering of Hong Kong’s working class nor solved the housing problem. Rather it has allowed tycoons to profit. The city needs tax reform so that government revenue does not rely on land sales.
The policy of non-intervention has led to tycoons and big businesses privatising necessities like housing, health care, education and, through the Mandatory Provident Fund, retirement savings. This benefits the private sector at the expense of the public.
Driven by an unrestrained greed, someone wishing to monetise, gambles with our future. Simply, compare the Gini for Hong Kong of 1997 and of today, and see yourself.

Massive social costs to enrich few - Parasites among us

Nowhere in the world is housing as unaffordable and nowhere has it made property developers as wealthy. Allowing markets to set prices only reinforces the housing crisis, as does letting local and foreign investors buy up property despite the housing shortage. Another absurdity is calling for more free competition to break up the property cartel.

As professor Anis H. Bajrektarevic observed and compared: “… it seems that the narrative by which the ‘freedom’ obsessed and spoiled capitalist youth is fighting the big egalitarian communist apparatus is overly simplified and is, thus, short in capturing the truth… It is [what is happening last months in Hong Kong] closer to an outcry of excluded and pauperised youth – quite similar to the one on the streets of Europe, whose protests faded away years ago … [Well] educated but disfranchised youth that feels the generational warfare replaced the social welfare… The Hongkongers are not fighting against the egalitarian ideas or system.
Quite to contrary, they are bitterly opposing social inequality and endemic generational exclusions.
The very tomorrow of European society might be – prudently or violently – decided on the streets of Hong Kong.”

A low-tax regime mostly benefits the landlord class and big business. Hong Kong residents actually pay among the highest taxes in the world in the form of high rents and housing prices, yet they have scant social safety nets. A wealth tax and more progressive taxes should be imposed to generate government revenue, instead of relying on land sales.

Hong Kong needs the opposite of the free-market dogma, so we can have more humane living conditions and social stability. Or as a former Vice-chancellor of the Hong Kong University wonderfully captured: “Neither violence, nor Beijing, can fix City’s housing shortage and lack of a social safety net.”

Many Hongkongers have lost out due to economic changes, and many have deep-seated distrust of mainland China. The Hong Kong government must first address their social exclusions and financial insecurities, enhancing all-generational debate before it can work on fostering a sense of Chinese identity.

Yuan T. Lee 1-1.jpg

About the author:
Wan T. Lee is a Hong Kong based scholar and researcher.

December 12,  2019

Romania 101: In its second Century – challanges ahead

Corneliu PIVARIU

Motto:“The light is on for those who see, not for the blind ones”.
Mihai Eminescu – Romanian poet

The Great Union of December 1st, 1919 was a ”stellar moment” for Romania, which was achieved by Romanian visionary and patriotic politicians with international support yet above all with the blood sacrifice of hundreds of thousands of Romanian soldiers, anonymous in their sacrifice yet eminents by sacrifying their lives on the sanctuary of imortality as a kin. It was a strictly national objective, not directed agains anyone of the world’s family of nations.
In fact, Romania paid in blood, probably more than other nations, its achievements of unity and independence and the strategic mistakes of the political class during different historical periods of the last 101 years as well.

War to the fore

After 1918, two essential moments marked in a dramatic way Romania’s contemporary history: The Second World War (where Romania lost around 800 thousand people, military and civilian) while the end of this universal scourge marked the fall into the then USSR arch of influence (with the acceptance – it should be said and reiterated – of the other Moscow’s allies during the war)  – and the socialist (communist) political orientation. The second moment is represented by the events of December 1989 when on the backgound of Nicolae Ceaușescu’s and the Communist Party’s removal from power, the orientation towards a democratic society and free market has been resumed going into a transition period which even the dead’s spirits and the aspirations of those who remained to achieve it have wanted to be a very short one yet proved to be longer than we wished. The greatest achievements of the almost 30 years of post-December 1989 period are Romania’s joining NATO (29th of March, 2004) and the European Union (1st of January, 2007).

During the almost 50 years of communist dictatorship, some hundreds of thousands more Romanians perished (the exact figure is difficult to quantify), great part of the intellectual elite, generals, valuable politicians who could not survive a terror regime instituted in 44 penitenciaries, 72 forced labour camps, 63 deportation centers, compulsory domiciles, 10 psychiatric hospices with political real cause. We can ask ourseves if Soljenitsin’s gulag was more terrifying than the gulags set up during communism in a space called Romania.

After The Second World War, Romania could not come back to its territorial configuration consecrated by the Great Union and, moreover, the Kremlin leadership took care that through arbitrary drawing up of the frontiers (and in 1952 by imposing the establishment of the Hungarian Autonomous Region, which changed its name in Mureș Autonomous Region in 1960, afterwards abolished in 1968 only by the administrative territorial  division into counties) < Cambria">and that left several possibilities for  the neighbours’ and minorities’ possible discontents and aspirations – especially of the Hungarian one – for achieving its political designs in Romania and in the area.

During the socialist period we notice two important moments: the withdrawal of the Soviet troops (June-July, 1958), while they remained in the other socialist countries until 1990; the 1968 moment – the invasion of Czechoslovakia, when Romania was the only socialist country that did not take part in , followed by an independent policy from Moscow, by the development of relations with democratic Western countries  and by a pervasive economic development (with great sacrifices and hardships for the population) promoted by Nicolae Ceaușescu.

After December 1989 events, when some outside forces sought Romania’s dismemberment as well – something that succeeded later on in cases of former Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia – we went through the Târgu Mureș events of March, 1990, another plot of tearing Transylvania away and of manipulating, through part of international media the reality of those events. In fact, a feature of the almost last 30 years is represented by the action of our Hungarian co-nationals to gain territorial autonomy on ethnic criteria, backed almost continuously by Budapest  although, according to Brussels’ assessments, the rights the Hungarian minority enjoys in Romania exceed those applied in the European states and, even more, the ethnical Romanian citizens in the areas with Hungarian prevailing population are subject to numerous discriminations.

When Hungary further acts and prepares actions for condemning the Treaty of Trianon (among others Budapest will organize on 11-13 of June, 2020 a conference on the issue) a treacherous declaration in favor of the Transylvanian Hungarians’ ”cultural and territorial autonomy” was signed on 12th of October, 2018 in Cluj Napoca and the actions aimed at Romania’s dismemberment, especially  by creating an independent Transylvania, will go on, as the separatist options gain ground in the European Union and Brussels proves unable to articulate a real management of the Union.

(Post-) December 1989 residual heat

The evolution of the Romanian political class after 1989 was greatly influenced by the socialist past and, thereafter, by the political evolutions in Europe and the USA. It would be mistaken not to mention the influence Moscow still exerts in Romania with persuation in many fields of the political, economic and social life.

Unfortunately, most of the valuable Romanian intellectuals refrained and further avoid to be directly involved in the political life. That resulted in a political class which, in general, is not able to meet the population’s expectations and the desired evolutions. As my dear colleague prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic often repeats: „Eastern Europe is probably the least influential region of the world – one of the very few underachievers. Obediently submissive, therefore rigid in dynamic environment of the promising 21st century, Eastern Europeans are among last remaining passive downloaders and slow-receivers on the otherwise blossoming stage of the world’s creativity, politics and economy.”

The most illustrative example is represented by the four presidents who could not stand above times, each of them due to different reasons: the first – as a result of the socialist-communist education he received especially in Moscow; the second – an university professor (lecturer) who declared himself being defeated by the former Securitate; the third – conditional on his training as long-haul commercial navy officer - yet with a political instinct that kept him in power for two mandates and who knew how to maneuver abroad for gaining support; the fourth – a mayor of a provincial town unexperienced in great politics who nevertheless gained in November 2019 a second mandate although in his first one, he shone internationally through obedience – and that played the most important role in his recent victory. The 66% of the votes he got in the second round (and more than 90% of the votes of the Romanians living abroad) signals a widespread popular appreciation. The direct involvement of the SPP (Protection and Security Service) has no relevance yet it proves Romania’s original democracy, never met in any other of the EU’s countries.

In Romania indeed, a semi-presidential state, the president has no decision-making  competences of first importance, especially in the economic field, as he cannot either fire the prime minister or dissolve the parliament (except under very particular conditions), precisely for avoiding the emergence of a new dictatorship. Yet that does not mean the president cannot be a factor for cristallyzing the people’s aspirations and to create, within the political class, a consensus for Romania’s future durable development. It is exactly this kind of project which is nowhere to be found now. Besides, since around 15 years, Romania hasn’t had any important country project and that proves the weak leadership capabilities of the entire political class and especially the presidency’s, who are required to chrystallize all the nation’s forces to that purpose.

The separation of powers is affected by the struggle of the four powers although there are numerous cases when the magistrates’ powers (judges and prosecutors – the latter being included amongst the magistrates according to a model which is not to be found in other European Union’s coutries) is used by forces and interests which are not beneficial to the Romanian state in achieving its specific objectives, sometimes under the pretext of fighting corruption (predominantly the domestic one, without touching any  of the great corporations).

Several thousands of judges and prosecutors enjoy a special status in the society as a result of the importance of their work and dispose of a power they believe that many do not realize yet they have. In 2018 only a law on the magistrate’s accountability was issued at a time when judgements of the European Court of Human Rights against Romania placed the latter on the first place as number of condemnations per capita or on the third place after Turkey and Russia (wich have much bigger populations).

However, the governing political forces, the president included, call for abolishing the Department for Investigating the Criminal Offences Accountability in Justice in spite of the fact that the High Court of Cassation and Justice opposed the abolishment, securing thus a a privileged position for the said social category. The much touted Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification on justice set up by the EU was and is still used more as a Brussels’ political instrument (or by some countries) against Romania especially on economic grounds and not for the initially declared purpose.

Romania’s accession to Schengen Area is further postponed although the country met the technical requirements since more than five years and that entails yearly economic losses of around 2 bill. Euro. The reasons behind are the particular interests of certain EU members and especially the president’s lack of action who, although represents us in the European fora, has never presented a report on his activity at the EU.

The citizen still does not get the needed respect and the state, instead of being the citizen’s  servant, has still the mentality of being above him.

The current situation in Romania is due first of all to us: some of us remained with a prejudicial obstinacy in the Byzantine reflex of ”complaining to the Sublime (High) Porte” which was later replaced by obsequios low-bow to Moscow’s, Brussels’,  Washington’s Portes or to other great European capitals. The forest could have not been cut if the axe had not the handle carved from the very wood of the forest, a proverb says, and we still have enough traitors, some of them in rather important positions, including abroad, of whom the magistrates have not yet the courage of dealing with.

Fit for defeat ?

After 1990, unhappy with the general situation in the country and seeking a better life, more than 4 million Romanians left the country for the EU, USA, Canada and other countries and in their greatest majority they are physicians, professors, engineers, researchers, technicians and highly qualified workers. It is the biggest contemporary population exodus from a country after the one provoked by the civil war in Syria. The danger of this situation was not correctly interpreted by the political class either. Let alone taking effective measures to prevent the weakening of the people’s national being!

The situation of the education is more than alarming. We had 26 ministers of Education during the last 29 years, most of them concerned about changing the law of education. According to public data, 42% of the pupils under 15 are functional (workable) illiterates. The relatively recent step of granting 6% of the GDP to education must be followed by decisive measures so that education become a top national priority. The latest 2019 budgetary adjustments cut 2 billion lei (around 500 mil. euro) from the budget of the education.

Romania – a country able to easily secure food for a population of 90 million people – continues to import in 2019 much more food products than it produces.

The situation of the development of infrastructure, roads, railways, energy is deplorable. During the almost 30 years since the fall of communism we were not able to build a highway crossing the Carpathians and our country is the laggard in Central and Eastern Europe with 783 km of highways. Romania has the same number of kilometers of railroads – approximately 11,000 km – as it had 100 years ago (in 1989 we had 24,000 km), and the average circulation speed for the passenger trains is 45km/h. In exchange, we are well placed in what the Internet speed is concerned, on the fifth place worldwide.

The post 1989 period is characterized economically by the foreign capital’s taking over the subsoil resources, the public utilities and banks, as the Romanian capital was not supported for dealing with the situation. In a special report, a Ernst&Young research is quoted whereby the takeovers (mergers and acquisitions) in the economies of the former socialist countries are analysed and clasified in three cathegories, takeovers by foreign capital, takeovers where the buyer and the seller are indigenous and takeovers from abroad which finds out that Romania is on the first place in what takovers by the foreign capital are concerned, 67% of them, and by far on the last place in what takeovers abroad are concerned, with 3% only. No country in the region witnessed such a discrepancy, of more than 22 times, between what the indigenous capital ceded to foreign capital on its own markets and what it managed to take over from the foreign capital  on the latter markets. The foreign capital externalizes yearly to their origin countries pre-tax profits of at least 35-40 billion euro.

A crime is perpetrated since many years against Romania’s forests and implicitly against its citizens. In 2019 only, 39 mil. cubic meters of timber are disforested (of which 18 – 20 mil. cubic meters unlawfully). The president and the government are notorious for their non involvement and their absolute lack of a position for addressing this situation and preventing unlawful deforestation to be followed by steady steps of reforestation.>

So that’s Romania’s real end-result in brief at the anniversary of 101 years since the Great Union. We could be proud of the achievements of the past yet at the same time we must be aware of the current problems and think of the future with solutions adapted to both the actual situation and to the perspective.

The current international situation is a complex one and important changes are taking place in the international order at a time when Romania, consumed with petty domestic disputes, is quite inexistent. No one but us will act for our sake except strictly within specific interests. Romania may have the future it deserves if it wants to act in this regard. Another 30-40 years will be probably needed for that.

About the author:
Corneliu PIVARIU is highly decorated two star general of the Romanina army (ret.).
For the past two decades, he successfully led one of the most infuential magazines on geopolitics and internatinal relations in Eastern Europe – bilingual journal ‚Geostrategic Pulse’.

An early version of this text appeared as the lead editorial in the The Geostrategic Pulse (No. 268/20.11.2018), a special issue dedicated to the Centennial anniversary.

December 2,  2019

Greta the Swede – manufacturing the Nazarethian preachers

By: Srdja Trifkovic


Seemingly out of nowhere, suddenly and rapidly, an obscure and evidently troubled Swedish teenager became a global celebrity. The phenomenon of Greta Thunberg is the theme of Srdja Trifkovic’s text.

Greta Thunberg soared from an apparently lonely girl protesting climate change with a hand-written cardboard placard outside the parliament building in Stockholm to one of the best-recognized faces in the world, at least for a brief while.

The Western media conglomerate would like its consumers to believe that the phenomenon has occurred spontaneously and on its own merits. Greta is in the news, they imply, because she is intrinsically newsworthy.

As it happens Greta’s “spontaneous” rise was neither true in fact nor possible in principle. Greta was not “in the news,” she became news because there is an agenda behind her launch. This is confirmed by ample empirical evidence. It could not be otherwise. The media do not “reflect” reality, and they are not designed to do so. They process reality and seek to shape reality in line with the ideological assumptions and political ambitions of their owners and controllers.

There is no “journalistic freedom” in the news media space, on either side of the Atlantic, any more than there is “academic freedom” in the departments of sociology, history, or anthropology in today’s Anglosphere. Both the media and the PC-infested academe exist for a clear purpose. They are in the twofold business of:

• setting the agenda by imposing and vigilantly maintaining a strict hierarchy of mandatory, desirable, or merely approved topics for debate; and

• manipulating their consumers (readers, watchers, students) into seeing those topics as important per se, and accepting their treatment within the prescribed terms of reference.

In the unreported reality there is a major, well financed PR machine behind Greta. It is controlled by powerful international actors and lavishly financed from discrete sources. This machine has enabled her to appear on the covers of magazines, to yield over three million results on Google, to meet Pope Francis and various world leaders, to address the UN, etc.

At the very least it would seem intuitively legitimate to ask how exactly did this phenomenon happen. But no major news outlet, TV channel, or newspaper has allowed—let alone encouraged—its reporters to go in search of the “untold story of Greta Thunberg.”

Most major media outlets are owned by a half-dozen companies. This enables the elite class to impose a specific message on the consumers rapidly and massively. Greta’s meteoric rise is the fruit of such media saturation. She embodies the ability of the media to manufacture issues ex nihilo. Mass media programming is particularly effective when directed at those who have not developed an ability to think critically, i.e. adolescents. Greta was developed and fine-tuned to target this exact audience.

The green movement has accordingly degenerated into a millenarian cult. It has its apocalyptic creed, its sacred rituals, its heretics, and now its priests. It is rooted in the politics of irrational fear. “Repent, you sinners, for the end of the world is nigh!” says Greta, and she could have come straight from Salem 300 years ago. The bizarre spectacle is aided and abetted by the media machine. Rational analysis of her claims is extremely rare and detested.

Greta IS the High Priestess: the monotone voice, her eyes filled with apocalyptic dread, plus warnings of the coming great ‘fire’ that will punish us all for our sins, the sense of absolute certainty. The Western media machine has made this spectacle possible. Greta is saying what she has been trained to say, and what the powerful recipients of her message want her to say. Greta is a project. She has been manipulated into manipulating others.

How it all started… With a simple tweet! “One 15 year old girl in front of the Swedish parliament is striking from School until Election Day in 3 weeks[.] Imagine how lonely she must feel in this picture. People were just walking by. Continuing with the business as usual thing. But the truth is. We can’t and she knows it!”

Tagged in Rentzhog’s “lonely girl” tweet were additional twitter accounts: Greta Thunberg, Zero Hour (youth movement), Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project, and the People’s Climate Strike Twitter account. Rentzhog is a member of Al Gore’s Climate Reality Organization Leaders, part of its European Climate Policy Task Force.

In the media-ignored real world, the very foundations which have financed the climate “movement” over the past decade are the same foundations now partnered with the Climate Finance Partnership looking to unlock 100 trillion dollars from pension funds.  Check out “The Manufacturing of Greta Thunberg for Consent” for the identities of individuals and groups at the helm of this interlocking matrix, controlling both the medium and the message.

There’s one Mĺrten Thorslund, chief marketing and sustainability officer of We Don’t Have Time, who took many of the very first photos of Thunberg following the launch of her school strike on August 20, 2018. His photos accompany the launch article written by David Olsson, chief operating officer of We Don’t Have Time,

“Greta became a climate champion and tried to influence those closest to her. Her father now writes articles and gives lectures on the climate crisis, whereas her mother, a famous Swedish opera singer, has stopped flying. All thanks to Greta. And clearly, she has stepped up her game, influencing the national conversation on the climate crisis—two weeks before the election.”

We Don’t Have Time reported on Greta’s strike on its first day and in less than 24 hours its Facebook posts and tweets received over 20,000 likes, shares and comments. It didn’t take long for national media to catch on: “As of the first week of the strike, at least six major daily newspapers, as well as Swedish and Danish national TV, have interviewed Greta. Two Swedish party leaders have stopped by to talk to her.”

The article continues: “Is there something big going on here? This one kid immediately got twenty supporters who now sit next to her. This one kid created numerous news stories in national newspapers and on TV. This one kid has received thousands of messages of love and support on social media.”

What was going on was the launch of a global campaign to usher in a required consensus for the the Green New Deal and other climate-related policies and legislation written by the power elite. This is necessary in order to unlock the trillions of dollars in funding—ostensibly due to massive public demand. Agreements and policies which include carbon capture and storage (CCS), enhanced oil recovery (EOR), bio-energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS), rapid total decarbonisation, payments for ecosystem services (“natural capital”), etc., need money. Their development and maintenance requires a mechanism to unlock $100 trillion for new investments and infrastructure. The project is audacious, but it is deemed doable by its creators.

The manipulative masterminds behind the Greta Project are her own parents. Her father is actor Svante Thunberg, and his father is actor and director Olof Thunberg. Her mother is the famous opera singer Malena Ernman who became a celebrity at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2009. In 2017, Ernman won the WWF “Environmental Hero” award for her “involvement in the climate issue”. Just a year later, on August 20th, 2018, her 15-year-old daughter started protesting in front of the Swedish parliament. Four days later, Ernman published a book Scenes From the Heart, which claims (inter alia) that Greta can actually see carbon dioxide emanating from vehicles and buildings.

A young woman is often seen “advising” Greta.  Meet Luisa-Marie Neubauer, a member of ONE Campaign, managed by Bill Gates and Bono and funded by George Soros’ Open Society Foundation. The corporate media machine overtly denies any such connection. To wit, the Associated Press (on its “fact-checking” site!) has an item with the weird title Climate activist Greta Thunberg does not have ‘handler’. The AP felt compelled to deny any such possibility upfront. It admits that Neubauer is linked to the Soros-funded group, but asserts that she does not serve as Greta’s “handler." Well, that settles the matter.

The media class is imposing frames which make every discourse possible only within its peculiar terms of reference. The result is a global problem that is a synthesis of all others. The globalist utopia advocated by Al Gore, Soros, Greta’s handlers, et al., is symptomatic of the looming end of Western culture as such. The elite’s environment, the real world outside the Empire’s control centers, is rapidly becoming symbolic rather than substantial.

However, on the plus side, the power of the corporate media is on the wane among the grown-ups. Its overtly partisan character in the U.S. is manifested in the collective Trump Derangement Syndrome. The collapse of all standards is grotesquely manifested in the media coverage of the Epstein affair. In the media world, the “natural” is squeezed out of the milieu, with nature merely providing the building blocks for the virtual.

The Western elite class, spearheaded by the media machine, seeks a new form of the ‘end of history’ in the transformation of society into a socio-technological system regulated by the enlightened state apparatus composed of themselves. Artificially induced climate panic, based on dubious science, is a major step in this endeavor. It would reflect the culture of man who has lost his bond with nature, immersed in artificial reality and permeated with it from within.

There is a malaise at the very core of Western media machine, and Greta is one of a thousand possible case studies. The corporate media elite shares with its masters the rejection of polities based on national and cultural commonalities. It detests durable national elites, constitutions and institutions. It is hostile to independent national economies. It exalts transnational institutions and mechanisms of control, such as the EU machine. It rejects Western political tradition based on limited government at home and nonintervention in foreign affairs. Above all, it advocates a form of state capitalism managed by the transnational elite apparatus of global financial and regulatory institutions.

The elite class’s core belief—that society should be managed by the transnational state in both its political and its economic life—is equally at odds with the tenets of the old liberal left and those of the traditional right. After the demise of totalitarian XX century projects, neoliberalism has become the agent of what Oswald Spengler presciently described, over a century ago, as the Decline of the West.

The Western media machine is an accessory to the project, its instigator and propagator. The media controllers’ key dictum—that humans can and should be transformed by the process of systematic indoctrination—was not defeated in the Berlin bunker or on the Berlin Wall. It must be debunked, discredited and destroyed, for the sake of truth, and decency, and—ultimately—for the sake of humankind’s very survival.

Srdja Trifkovic, Ph.D., is foreign affairs editor for Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is a professor of international relations at the University of Banja Luka in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the author of several books. Earlier version of this text appeared in the Chronicles, under the title: “Greta the Swede, or Gretinizing the Global Media”

[Image via Anders Hellberg [CC BY-SA 4.0]

NOVEMBER 29,  2019

Belt and Road Initiative: Challenging South and Southeast Asia

Dr. Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat

The euphoria about the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in Indonesia and elsewhere in South and Southeast Asia (SEA) has been felt since 2017, particularly following the country’s participation in the BRI Summit in Beijing that year, where Indonesia (along with other SAARC and ASEAN member states) was expected to receive massive investments from China to support several infrastructure projects.
This year, the debates concerning the BRI are again becoming prevalent after Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan as Indonesia's representative signed 28 BRI projects last April. Among the various debated subjects is the growing concern about the real nature of the BRI. Is that a Chinese developmental initiative or a geopolitical instrument that uses debt-trap as a tool to bring targeted countries into the desired terms.

The BRI as Chinese debt trap

In the realisation of the BRI, China is targeted to spend US $ 4.4 trillion (Rp 62.7 thousand trillion) which is divided into various infrastructure projects in 65 countries. The funds from China will be disbursed from three main institutions, namely the Export-Import Bank of China, the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank and the Silk Road Fund. However, the implementation of the BRI caused various kinds of controversy, one of which was related to the fear of a debt trap.

Sri Lanka is one of the BRI participating countries that must give up on China’s debt. The Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) project in Sri Lanka which costed US $ 190 million (Rp 2.7 trillion) with an interest of 6.3 percent did not benefit from the airport's operations.

As a result, the Sri Lankan government is losing money. This made the country unable to pay debts to China. The inability to pay credit or interest, at the end of June 2016, led Sri Lanka to make an agreement with China in the form of equity (surrendering land for lease) for 99 years to the country.

According to a well-known SAARC strategic analyst based in India, Brahma Chellaney, what China does with its BRI is a debt-trap diplomacy effort, where this type of diplomacy is a bilateral relationship that is interwoven on the basis of debt. In its operations, this type of diplomacy involves a creditor country that deliberately extends excessive credit to the debtor country. If the debtor country cannot fulfill its debt obligations, often the creditor country will make it possible to interfere with economic and political conditions in the debtor country.

Acknowledging this, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad in August 2018 said his country would stop funding-backed projects from China, including a railway line worth US $ 20 billion as there is a possibility that the country would be trapped in huge debts.

“We should avoid binary categorisations… However, a bilateral approach in developmental strategies historically does not bring back satisfactory results. Besides the Bretton Woods instruments – often enveloped in controversies, do not forget developmental champions. All of them are multilateral institutions of fair conditionalities, of balanced and transparent instruments: UNIDO, ADB, but also Islamic Development Bank, OFID or UNCTAD. If not a loan, ask them at least for advice”, prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic reminded us recently in Kuala Lumpur at the Economic Forum.

Indonesia and lessons from Malaysia

The same concern is also prevalent in Indonesia, given that the country, in the midst of many of its own problems, the government seemed to be incessantly ambitious to continue to take part in the BRI. It is important to remember that currently Indonesia's external debt has reached US$387.6 billion at the first quarter of 2019. It consists of government and central bank external debts of US$190.5 billion that have slightly rose by 3.1 percent (year-on-year) and private external debts of US$197.1 bilion that have rocketed by 12.8 percent (year-on-year).

Although the ratio of Indonesia’s external debt to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is relatively safe at the level 36.9 percent and S&P Global Rating has just raised the long-term sovereign credit ratio for Indonesia from “BBB-“ to “BBB”, the Indonesia’s economic foundation is very fragile.

In 2018, for instance, the massive capital outflow made significant depreciation of the Rupiah against the US dollar due to the hike of Fed Fund Rates and the contagion of Turkish lira crisis. The currency hit about 15,000 rupiah against the greenbacks, the lowest level since the 1998 financial crisis, and made it one of the worst performing currencies in the region.
The extreme volatility of the Rupiah causes payments of interests and foreign debts more expensive. The 1998 financial crisis provided a precious experience that many companies faced default and the country’s economy experience chaos with economic growth of -13.1%. With such conditions, how come Indonesia dear to magnify its debts by signing massive BRI projects?

There is also a concern that the BRI projects is, instead of profiting Indonesia, putting the country at a disadvantage. One example comes from the Palembang LRT project, which has the same potential as the airport in Sri Lanka, is empty with little visitors. In fact, this project must suffer losses with an operating burden of Rp. 8.9 billion (US$618, 545) per month.

By looking at the fact that infrastructure projects have not been able to improve economic growth and to the gap in inequality - especially in the East - as well as various other disputes, the government's decision to sign many BRI projects is certainly questionable. Also ironic is that the implementation of infrastructure development in Indonesia remains suffering from overt corruption practices. Instead of aiming at the welfare of society, infrastructure projects often become fields of concern for interested parties. Overall, there is a possibility that Indonesia will face Chinese debt trap is it is not careful, which would have negative impacts on the Indonesian economy.

The government needs to be able to make sure that participating in the BRI would not led to its loss. As what Malaysia has done, Jakarta may need to renegotiate with China on the terms and conditions of those projects. Indonesia must realise that China needs them more than they need China as the planned maritime route under the BRI would not be realised without Indonesia. Malaysian case demonstrates that negotiation is possible with China. Failure to do the above, it would not be surprising if what happened to Sri Lanka would also happen to Indonesia.

Dr. Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat is a lecturer at Universitas Islam Indonesia and a research associate at Jakarta-based Institute for Development of Economics and Finance.
Dendy Indramawan is a research assistant at Jakarta-based Institute for Development of Economics and Finance.

NOVEMBER 20,  2019


International Institute IFIMES prepared the analysis of actual political situation in the Western Balkans prior to the European Council meeting to be held in Brussels on 17th and 18th October 2019, where the date for the start of negotiations with Republic North Macedonia and Republic Albania for their EU membership shall be determined. From the comprehensive analysis “Western Balkans 2019: Does the EU push the Western Balkans countries to the Russian ‘hug’?” we present the most important and the most interesting parts.

Western Balkans 2019:

Western Balkans and decades ‘eaten’ by the EU’s double standards

Regular autumn meeting of the European Council (EC) shall be held on 17th and 18th October in Brussels. Although the importance of meeting of the EU leaders is focused on Brexit on October 31st 2019, the Western Balkans expects that the Republic of North Macedonia and the Republic of Albania get the date for the start of the negotiations with the EU.

The EU was made as peace project after the end of the World War II and it enabled to ensure permanent peace in Europe and long-term stability. In recent past, in the Western Balkans though, several wars were going on. Therefore, a fragile peace was established and temporary stability.

The analysts believe that the EU leaders must be aware of the fact that if they want the EU peace project to be continued, it needs to be implemented in the Western Balkans countries, because through the EU membership, it would be ensured that countries of that region achieve permanent peace and long-term stability. As long as the Western Balkans is an unstable region, the EU shall not be able to address the key issues and long-term strategic positioning in the international framework.
Is the Western Balkans a stepchild of Europe ?

European leaders have often confirmed their support to the Western Balkans and its Euro Atlantic road, expressing at the same time concerns about the impact of individual states in the region, particularly Russia, China and Turkey. The EU with its enlargement stalemate practically pushes the Western Balkans counters to Russian „hug“, to blame in the end those countries for their close relations and cooperation with Russia. However, some EU states always set new requirements and membership criteria for the Western Balkans.

Some experts have been pointing out that 15 EU member countries would not be able to fully meet the membership criteria now, which are required from the Western Balkans countries. They also note that Bulgaria and Romania were admitted to the EU membership, as well as Croatia recently, without imposing so strict requirements of the membership. In 2004 only 9,5 countries were accepted to the EU membership, because only half the Cyprus was accepted. The French region Corsica and the Italian region Sicily are also mentioned as those, where the EU regulations do not function at all as stipulated by the EU standards, regulations and directives.

(Non)functioning of the EU can be illustrated best on the example of the dialogue between official Belgrade and Pristina on normalization of the relations, which is mediated by the EU. Although so called Brussels agreement on dialogue was signed on April 19, 2013 the dialogue was terminated and its destiny is not certain.

The dialogue was held non-transparently, while on the other side the EU demands transparency from the Western Balkans countries, though the EU is non-transparent itself. It proved in the cases of tax evasion for certain transnational companies, which were happening in Luxembourg in times when its prime minister was the current president of the European Commission Jean-Cloud Juncker (EPP). There are numerous examples of non-transparency and unacceptable role of the EU.

The Unacceptable role of the EU – the case of Ursula van der Leyen

The latest example of an unacceptable role of the EU is disputable visit of newly elected president of the European Commission (EC) Ursula von der Leyen (CDU/EPP) to the Republic of Croatia. She will have to be more careful in future when it comes to the Western Balkans and actions of the European Commission. Von der Leyen said during the visit that she will work on bringing closer the Western Balkans countries to the EU. The Western Balkans is the part of the Europe and if the EU wants those countries to become EU members, it must precisely define the year of the enlargement, and not only send the statements about this; otherwise those countries will be forced to find some other solutions to take.

Croatia is typical example of new European behaviour. Actually, Croatia does not respect the decisions of international arbitration court regarding the cross-border dispute with Slovenia. At the same time, Republic of Croatia does not respect the decision of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Courts for the crimes perpetrated in the former Yugoslavia (MICT), by which certain highly positioned officials of Croatia and Croatian Democratic Party (HDZ) are sentenced by absolute decision for participation in the associated crime against Bosnia and Herzegovina. HDZ is a political party against which the process is ongoing at the district court in Zagreb. At the same time it should be added that the position of Serbian community in Croatia suddenly deteriorated after Croatia became full member of the EU. Serbian community was cooperative and important factor, which contributed that Croatia became the EU member.

The audit of events from the Word War II is ongoing in Croatia where the attempts are made to rehabilitate fascist and collaboration armies and present them as anti-fascist. Of enormous importance is the position of Jewish community, which still did not resolve the issue of returning its property taken from them. Audit of history contributed that the Jewish community and other anti-fascist associations independently and in fact separately celebrate anniversary of liberation from the concentration camp Jasenovac that was held by the Ustasha regime. Representatives of the Croatian state do not take place at those commemorations. Pro fascist appearances and speeches of the president of the Republic of Croatia Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović (HDZ) and her open involvement in internal affairs in the nearby Bosnia and Herzegovina are evident.
Croatia as the EU and NATO member did not resolve open border issues with any of the neighbours except for Hungary, since it inherited that border from former Yugoslavia.

Republic Croatia shall on January 1, 2020 start with the Presidency of the EU Council. The focus of its presidency will be the Western Balkans where it is in conflict with almost all states. Croatia does not recognize legal and legitimate election of the Croat Željko Komšić (DF) for Presidency member of Bosnian and Herzegovina from the Croatian population only because its favourite president of HDZ BiH controversial Dragan Čović (HDZ BiH) was not elected. Komšić was elected based on the same election law by which Mr Čović was previously elected. It became almost constant trend that Croatian officials misuse their EU and NATO membership when it comes to Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as to the Republic of Serbia. It is expected that similar situation will be soon in the Council of Europe (CoE), because secretary general of the Council of Europe is Marija Pejčinović Burić (HDZ), former minister of foreign affairs of Croatia.

The analysts find worrying the fact that the EU and NATO institutions did not react to the behaviour of Croatia when it comes to Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, because it is evident Croatia misuses its EU and NATO membership. Many war criminals find their shelter in Croatia, including those who were sentenced by absolute decision in Bosnia and Herzegovina for the crimes they perpetrated, while Croatian secret services harass the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina living on its territory. Croatian police practices inhuman behaviour against the migrants (beating and torture) and performs illegal readmission of migrants from its territory to BiH, which was already alerted by the human rights organisations. Croatia strongly builds its relations with Russia despite the introduced sanctions of the EU against Russia. Croatia shall need help to face and overcome challenges and situations it is in. If it wants its chair mandate in the EU not to be doomed in advance, at least when it comes to the Western Balkans, it shall need help from the EU as well as from the countries of the region, because the experiences so far showed that „facing the self“ is the most difficult.

Trilateral Serbia – North Macedonia – Albania

In Novi Sad on October 10, 2019 trilateral meeting between president of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić (SNS) and prime ministers of North Macedonia and Albania, Zoran Zaev (SDSM) and Edi Rama (PS) was held. Declaration of measures for establishment of „small Schengen“ was signed between the three countries.

This declaration should help the entire Western Balkans region to start functioning in four key EU freedoms – freedom of movement of capital, goods, services and people.

Joint declaration foresees elimination of state border controls and other obstacles to simpler movement in the region until 2021, and also to enable citizens to travel in the region with personal ID card only as well as to find employments anywhere if they have the certificate of their qualifications.

Declaration also foresees recognition of diplomas in the region as well as better cooperation in combatting organised crime and support in cases of natural disasters.

President of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić invited all so-called members of the Balkans six to accept the document about “small Schengen”, regardless of their differences referring to the recognition of Kosovo.

The prime minister of North Macedonia Zoran Zaev said that the initiative for economic networking of the countries in the region should be joined by all six Western Balkans countries (Serbia, North Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Kosovo).

Zaev said that North Macedonia supported the initiative because „much more needs to be done in economic networking. We are sending message that political relations in the region become simpler, that Balkans is not a barrel of gunpowder anymore but the region of stability and economic development, committed to the Euro integrations and improvement of the standard of its citizens“.
Last week the president of Serbia Vučić held in Belgrade trilateral meeting Serbia-Turkey-Bosnia and Herzegovina and the joint basis for commencement of works on highway Belgrade – Sarajevo was laid, which is one of the important infrastructure projects.

Experts believe that those are new positive moments arriving from Serbia and its president Aleksandar Vučić which should be welcomed and supported by the EU in order to continue and additionally intensify that trend of cooperation. It is expected that new and better era for the future of Serbia and the region shall start.

The Western Balkans as the new Višegrad Group

On the initiative of the Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, with the support of North Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev and Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, mutual cooperation in the Western Balkans region has been intensified. The Western Balkans leaders are aware of the need to take strong steps towards mutual cooperation, which will be aimed at creating better living conditions for citizens and, especially important, stopping the trend of mass displacement of population from the region.

Analysts believe that the countries of the Western Balkans must establish strong political, economic, cultural and any other form of cooperation and act jointly towards the EU, as a group of states with clearly defined requirements. When it comes to the EU enlargement, it is necessary to specify when the enlargement will take place, since it cannot be delayed indefinitely. It is important to emphasize that regional cooperation does not mean that the countries of the region have given up their European path and the EU membership, which Montenegro expresses as its concern.

In so doing, as an experience can serve the cooperation within the so-called Višegrad group of countries (Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia), which very often jointly act within the EU with clearly expressed demands and attitudes. Moreover, the Višegrad Group was formed to make it easier and faster for these countries to join the EU and NATO, which they did. Therefore, it is important for the countries of the region to act jointly towards the EU and / or other foreign policy initiatives, as a single approach is insufficient and does not guarantee success.

The date for the start of the negotiations with the EU for North Macedonia and Albania

At the EU Summit on 17 and 18 October 2019 in Brussels, the decision on the date for the start of negotiations should be taken. Although some member states were sceptical of assigning the date, in the end only France remained to approve the start of the EU negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania.

Analysts believe that the EU member states, including France, must show vision for the enlargement, because if the enlargements had not happened in the past, the EU would never have developed into such respectable regional integration. Given that the EU has 27 members (excluding the UK), there is always the possibility of different conditions and blockades, which should be avoided or not allowed by the member states. This is especially important in circumstances where other countries are trying to exert strong influence in the Western Balkans, above all Russia, China and Turkey. The EU hesitance can have strategic consequences in the Western Balkans and it is due to uncertainty about EU membership and pressures from the domestic public, that certain countries could change their geopolitical orientation.

Analysts believe that the reservations of France and its President, Emmanuel Macron (ALDE), when it comes to assigning the dates to start EU negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania show another absurdity of the European policy. Specifically, Macron's La République En Marche Party is a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in the European Parliament (ALDE), who are strong supporters of the enlargement, and that its member La République En Marche is blocking the enlargement. This is why ALDE is under a historic responsibility because President Macron belongs to ALDE. It is surprising to see French President Macron, who was seen as the new leader of Europe two years ago when coming to power. With the announcement of the blockade of the assigning the date for the start of negotiations for North Macedonia and Albania, Macron shows that he has no vision and disassociates with his political group ALDE within the EU, which is a strong proponent of the enlargement, thereby assuming a huge responsibility for the EU's destiny and enlargement process.

In addition to the issue of stability in the Western Balkans region, it also concerns the credibility of European leaders. Namely, at the EU summit in June 2018, they decided that they would assign in 2019 a date for the start of negotiations to North Macedonia and Albania, if they meet conditions for the start of negotiations. For both countries, and especially for North Macedonia, this has been clearly achieved. If no date is set for the start of negotiations (the start of negotiations does not mean the EU membership), European leaders will eat their word and lose their credibility. This will also call into question (Robert) Schuman's vision of the united Europe. In that case, one could even say that President Macron was working against the idea of his great countryman, who launched the project of today's EU.

The EU has jeopardized the American interests as well

The dialogue between official Belgrade and Pristina was led by the EU as a mediator. The dialogue was a fiasco. No significant progress has been made in the last ten years since the Western Balkans region was left to the care of the EU. Other countries, especially Russia, China and Turkey, have strengthened their presence and influence in the region. Such action by the EU necessitated the return of the United States to the Balkans. The justified questions are, is the EU a reliable partner and can the EU overcome the internal crisis without strong support of the USA?

Analysts believe that of particular symbolic importance, and may be the last chance because of the credibility of the EU in the Western Balkans, is to save the Western Balkan countries from the “hug” of Russia, China and Turkey by assigning the start date of EU negotiations for North Macedonia and Albania, at the EU summit in Brussels, and to accelerate work on conclusion of a dialogue between official Belgrade and Pristina by signing a legally binding agreement, while the countries in the region intensively work on the regional co-operation started in the region.

Ljubljana, October 16, 2019

IFIMES is an international institute of the Special Consultative status with the UN. It has permanent representations with the Un in New York, Geneva and Vienna respectively.

OCTOBER 21,  2019



  Hong Kong: No more China’s disheartened capitalism, please - Wan T. Lee
  Romania 101: In its second Century – challanges ahead - Corneliu PIVARIU


  Greta the Swede – manufacturing the Nazarethian preachers - By: Srdja Trifkovic
  Belt and Road Initiative: Challenging South and Southeast Asia - Dr. Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat


  Western Balkans and decades ‘eaten’ by the EU’s double standards
  Limits to the Asia-Pacific Growth - By Meseto Abe


  Kosovo – Albania – North Macedonia 2019: In anticipation of the collapse of the Thaçi-Rama conjoined regimes?
A Short History of the ASEAN Digital Future - Dr. Andrew Sheng


  Deeper meanings of the Hong Kong protests - Is China a game changer or yet another winner? - Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarević,
France: Chaos or a New Social Compact? - Dr. Guy Milličre
Fracking Societies through manufactured revolts - Carlos Pereyra Méle

  BiH: Mystical Islam heals wounds of Sarajevo’s dramatic past - Ansambl Neyzen Hamza Dede


  Malaysia – Yet another crisis looming? - By: Murray Hunter

Sensation of Financialization - Jomo Kwame Sundaram, Michael Lim Mah Hui


  Anthropo-geographic Inversion: Tireless Othering - Anis H. Bajrektarevic
Davos: The Other Side of the Mirror - Pia Victoria Poppenreiter

  The Sino-US Trade War – Why China can’t win it - Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic


  Japan - A quiet geo-economic giant - Dr. Masahiro MATSUMURA
  CHRISTIAN SCHWARZ-SCHILLING NEVER SURVIVES: "Let the High Representative pass a law on the negation of the GENOCIDE, today's LAW Dodik takes a grave offense on himself ..."

  Huawei slučaj: HiFi Geostrateški Gambit - Juan Martin González Cabanas
  Back to the Afghan Future: The security challenges of Afghanistan's reconstruction and development - Gilles-Emmanuel JACQUET

  Zarif’s sudden resignation: The beginning of the militarization of the Iranian diplomacy? - Bakhtyar Aljaf


  Zarif’s sudden resignation: The beginning of the militarization of the Iranian diplomacy? - Bakhtyar Aljaf, Director of IFIMES
  From WWI to www. 1919-2019 - Anis Bajrektarević
  Twinning Europe and Asia in Cyberspace - Melda_Kamil_Ariadno and Anis Bajrektarević


prof. dr. Anis Bajrektarevic
prof. dr. Anis Bajrektarevic

Editor - Geopolitics, History, International Relations (GHIR) Addleton Academic Publishers - New YorK

Senior Advisory board member, geopolitics of energy Canadian energy research institute - ceri, Ottawa/Calgary

Advisory Board Chairman Modern Diplomacy & the md Tomorrow's people platform originator

Head of mission and department head - strategic studies on Asia
Professor and Chairperson Intl. law & global pol. studies

Critical Similarities and Differences in SS of Asia and Europe - Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic

MENA Saga and Lady Gaga - (Same dilemma from the MENA) - Anis H. Bajrektarevic

Dr. Nguyen Anh Tuan, Assos. Prof.[1] Nguyen Linh[2]

Climate Change and Re Insurance: The Human Security Issue SC-SEA Prof. Anis Bajrektarevic & Carla Baumer

Igor Dirgantara
(Researcher and Lecturer at the Faculty of Social and Politics, University of Jayabaya)

Peny Sotiropoulou

Is the ‘crisis of secularism’ in Western Europe the result of multiculturalism?

Dr. Emanuel L. Paparella
A Modest “Australian” Proposal to Resolve our Geo-Political Problems

Were the Crusades Justified? A Revisiting - Dr. Emanuel L. Paparella

Alisa Fazleeva
Earned an MA in International Relations from the University of East Anglia in Norwich, United Kingdom in 2013. Her research interests include foreign policy decision-making, realism and constructivism, and social psychology and constructivism.

Corinna Metz
She is an independent researcher specialized in International Politics and Peace & Conflict Studies with a regional focus on the Balkans and the Middle East.

Patricia Galves Derolle
Founder of Internacionalista
Săo Paulo, Brazil
Brazil – New Age

Dimitra Karantzeni
The political character of Social Media: How do Greek Internet users perceive and use social networks?


Michael Akerib

Petra Posega
is a master`s degree student on the University for Criminal justice and Security in Ljubljana. She obtained her bachelor`s degree in Political Science- Defense studies.


Samantha Brletich,
 George Mason University School of Policy, Government, and Intl. Relations She focuses on Russia and Central Asia. Ms. Brletich is an employee of the US Department of Defense.

Interview on HRT-Radio

Prof. dr. Anis Bajrektarević

Dr Filippo ROMEO,

Julia Suryakusuma is the outspoken Indonesian thinker, social-cause fighter and trendsetter. She is the author of Julia’s Jihad.


Gerald Knaus

Mads Jacobsen
Mads is an intern at PCRC. Mads Jacobsen is from Denmark and is currently pursuing his Master's degree in 'Development and International Relations' at Aalborg University...

Dzalila Osmanovic-Muharemagic
University of Bihac, Faculty of Education, Department of English Language and Literature - undergraduate
University of Banja Luka, Faculty of Philology, Department of English Language and Literature - graduate study

Rakesh Krishnan Simha

New Zealand-based journalist and foreign affairs analyst. According to him, he writes on stuff the media distorts, misses or ignores.

Rakesh started his career in 1995 with New Delhi-based Business World magazine, and later worked in a string of positions at other leading media houses such as India Today, Hindustan Times, Business Standard and the Financial Express, where he was the news editor.

He is the Senior Advisory Board member of one of the fastest growing Europe’s foreign policy platforms: Modern Diplomacy.

Damiel Scalea
Daniele Scalea, geopolitical analyst, is Director-general of IsAG (Rome Institute of Geopolitics) and Ph.D. Candidate in Political studies at the Sapienza University, Rome. Author of three books, is frequent contributor and columnist to various Tv-channels and newspapers. E-mail:

Alessio Stilo,
Research Associate at Institute of High Studies in Geopolitics and Auxiliary Sciences (IsAG), Rome, Italy, and Ph.D. researcher at University of Padova, is IMN Country Representative in Italy.

Tomislav Jakić
Foreign Policy Advisor to former Croatian President Stjepan Mesić

Zlatko Hadžidedić

Graduate of the London School of Economics, prof. Zlatko Hadžidedić is a prominent thinker, prolific author of numerous books, and indispensable political figure of the former Yugoslav socio-political space in 1990s, 2000s and 2010s.

Mr. Nicola Bilotta
Nicola Bilotta has a BA and a MA in History from Universitŕ degli Studi di Milano and a MSc in Economic History from the London School of Economics. He works as a Global Finance Research Assistant at The Banker (Financial Times) and collaborates as an external researcher at ISAG (Istituto di Alti Studi di Geopolitica e Scienze Ausiliari)

Markus Wauran

Date and Place of Birth: April 22, 1943 – Amurang, North Sulawesi, IndonesiaEducation: Bachelor in Public Administration.
Writer was a member of the House of Representatives of Indonesia (DPR/MPR-RI) period of 1987-1999, and Chairman of Committee X, cover Science and Technology, Environment and National Development Planning (1988-1997).
Currently as Obsever of Nuclear for peace

Sooyoung Hu

Attached to the US-based Berkeley University, Sooyoung Hu is a scholar at its Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies Department. Miss Hu focuses on international relations, international organizations and its instruments.

Senahid LAVIĆ

Nizar Visram
 Nizar Visram is a Ottawa-based free-lance writer from Zanzibar, Tanzania. Recently retired Senior lecturer on Development studies, he extensively publishes in over 50 countries on 4 continents. He can be reached at
nizar1941(at) .

Robert Leonard Rope
He studied at the University of Michigan,
He lives in: San Francisco, California: San Francisco, California, USA

Dragan Bursac,


Max Hess
Max Hess is a senior political risk analyst with the London-based AEK international, specializing in Europe and Eurasia.

Ananya Bordoloi
Ananya Bordoloi is a Malaysia based researcher in the fields of international relations, global governance and human rights. Author has previously worked with Amnesty International in research and data collection capacity, and for a publishing company as a pre-editor.

Robert J. Burrowes
 has a lifetime commitment to understanding and ending human violence. He has done extensive research since 1966 in an effort to understand why human beings are violent and has been a nonviolent activist since 1981. He is the author of Why Violence?’ His email address is and his website is here.

Amel Ouchenane is a member of the organization of Security and Strategic studies in Algeria. She is also Research Assistant at the Idrak Research Center for Studies and Consultations.
Ms. Ouchenane was researcher at Algiers University from 2011 to 2018. (Department of International relations and African studies).

Dr. Nafees Ahmad
Ph. D., LL.M, Faculty of Legal Studies, South Asian University (SAARC)-New Delhi, Nafees Ahmad is an Indian national who holds a Doctorate (Ph.D.) in International Refugee Law and Human Rights. Author teaches and writes on International Forced Migrations, Climate Change Refugees & Human Displacement Refugee, Policy, Asylum, Durable Solutions and Extradition issues.

Sinta Stepani
International relations specialists based in Săo Paulo, Brazil.

Gilles-Emmanuel JACQUET
Assistant Professor of the World History at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations. He is also senior anlaysit at the Geneva International Peace Research Institute (GIPRI)

Juan Martin González Cabańas
 Juan Martin González Cabańas
is a senior researcher and analyst at the Dossier Geopolitico

Dr. Andrew Sheng is distinguished fellow of the Asia Global Institute at the University of Hong Kong and a member of the UNEP Advisory Council on Sustainable Finance.

Srdja Trifkovic, Ph.D., is foreign affairs editor for Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is a professor of international relations at the University of Banja Luka in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the author of several books. Earlier version of this text appeared in the Chronicles, under the title: “Greta the Swede, or Gretinizing the Global Media”