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This Week at ISN

06 - 10 May 2013 The increasing securitization if not overt militarization of space continues unabated. This week, we looked at the broader implications of this trend, both conceptually and in practice. Next week, we'll examine the space-centered strategies of some of the key actors in this domain.

Militarizing Space
International Relations Theory and Spacepower
06 May 2013

Just as geography has historically framed and even defined the conceptualization of international relations, space is increasingly bounding 21st century IR discourse. To help us grasp this trend better, Robert Pfaltzgraff explores the growing interrelationship between space power and international relations theory. More Security and Space Power
07 May 2013

Space Power is set to play an increasingly important role in statecraft and conflict prevention in the future. M.V. Smith looks at how Space Power could be employed to deter adversaries without necessarily using or threatening to use force. More Finding Space in Deterrence
08 May 2013

In the past, deterrence in space was considered simply one element of nuclear stability. But as James Finch and Shawn Steen observe, this is no longer the case. They explore the lessons - as well as the limits - of nuclear deterrence literature in understanding the space component of strategic stability. More Transparency and Confidence Building in Outer Space: Inching Toward Action
09 May 2013

Progress at the multilateral level in addressing potential challenges to space security has been glacially slow, observes Theresa Hitchens. Nonetheless, she argues that a consensus has emerged around the notion that multilateral cooperation is required to mitigate the potential for conflict in space. More Deliberating the Space Code of Conduct
10 May 2013

The draft International Code of Conduct for Outer Space Activities aims to ensure the security, safety and sustainability of Outer Space. Ajey Lele doubts that in its present form the Code is capable of realizing these objectives. This is because it lacks an accountability mechanism. More

Security Watch
Why Terrorism is Different
06 May 2013

While the Boston Marathon bombing was immediately labeled as a terrorist attack, the US has witnessed several outbreaks of mass violence that weren't defined that way. James Joyner revisits a familiar definitional game i.e., he tries to distinguish one form of politically motivated violence from another. More Balochistan: Pakistan's Next Headache?
07 May 2013

Balochistan has struggled for independence from Pakistan for decades. Vikas Kumar believes upcoming elections and the US withdrawal from Afghanistan will provide Baloch nationalists with opportunities to rejuvenate their cause. They will then have to contend with China's growing presence in this restive province. More The Beting Serupai Incident
08 May 2013

The People's Liberation Army Navy recently undertook 'patrol and training missions' within territorial waters claimed by Malaysia. Tang Siew Mun considers this an error of strategic judgment on Beijing's part. Kuala Lumpur has always advocated a more reasoned and diplomatic approach to problems in the South China Sea. More Japan Under Shinzo Abe: 'Too Nationalist for the Rest of Asia?
09 May 2013

Nationalist gestures and rhetoric from Tokyo in recent months have led to suggestions that Japan may be abandoning its post-War pacifism in favor of a more assertive posture. According to Axel Berkofsky, however, this narrative forgets that the overwhelming majority of the country is opposed to such a change. More Greenland's Dilemma and its 'Reluctant' Alliance with China
10 May 2013

China is becoming increasingly interested in Greenland's natural resources. And while the autonomous Danish territory once welcomed Chinese investment, Bhavna Singh believes Nuuk is now using domestic opposition to foreign workers to realign its diplomatic relations with Beijing and other states. More

ISN Blog
The Collapsing Arab State
06 May 2013

Is the nation-state system compatible with an emerging and more fragmented Arab world? Nawaif Obaid has his doubts, which then leads to another burning question can the region's stability survive without centralized nation-states remaining in place? More Praetorian China?
07 May 2013

Is the Chinese Communist Party in complete control of the People's Liberation Army? Not according to Masahiro Matsumura, who believes that the Chinese state apparatus is largely detached from the military and has only a loose grip on the generals. More Erdoan's Kurdish Gambit
08 May 2013

Sinan Ulgen believes Recep Tayyip Erdoan has developed an audacious plan to enhance Turkey's regional status and extend his political dominance at home. This includes a strategic realignment with the country's Kurdish minority that may eventually facilitate the exploitation of the region's last untapped energy resources. More

Two Policy Prescriptions for the Global Crisis


09 May 2013

Kaushik Basu is not surprised that we remain mired in a global economic crisis. This is because central banks are designed to steer national instead of global economies. What's needed, he argues, is a 'G Major' grouping of economies to better coordinate global monetary policies. More Syria's Chemical Genie
10 May 2013

International organizations and leading global powers have so far failed to contain the security risks posed by Syria's stockpile of chemical weapons, or so argues Bennett Ramberg. As a result, he casts doubts over their combined capacity to handle an imminent nuclear threat. More

Video
29th National Space Symposium: The Space Warfighters Luncheon In this video, Major General Jack Weinstein, who is Director of Air, Space and Cyberspace Operations for the US Air Force Space Command, shares his thoughts on how this organization has fundamentally changed the way America fights and wins wars. More Saudi Arabia's Demographic Challenge In this video, Stratfor Middle East Analyst Ashley Lindsey discusses Saudi Arabia's demographic challenge of educating its young population and integrating more women into its work force. More Fundamentals of Space Security In this video, Roy Sach considers some of the scientific and technological developments that may profoundly impact upon the dynamics of space security over the coming decades. These include advances in automated robotics and mining on the moon. More

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