Ashish Kumar Sen

  • Trump Right to Call Out Russia, But is Quitting an Arms Control Treaty the Answer?

    If there is one thing most arms control experts can agree on it is this: Russia has for many years been violating the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

    Another thing they agree on: US President Donald J. Trump’s intention to walk away from the treaty signed by the United States and the Soviet Union in 1987 has created the impression that it is the United States that is at fault.

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  • Why is a Caravan of Central American Migrants Fleeing to the United States?

    An estimated 5,000 Central American migrants are heading north.

    US President Donald J. Trump has warned this “caravan” not to enter the United States. In a tweet on October 22, he claimed that “criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in.”

    Trump also threatened to cut off, or substantially reduce, aid provided to the countries of the Northern Triangle—Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras—which are the chief source of these migrants.

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  • US Pastor's Release Signals a New Chapter in US-Turkey Ties

    A Turkish court on October 12 freed from house arrest a US pastor whose case had severely strained ties between Washington and Ankara—NATO allies.

    Pastor Andrew Brunson was arrested in 2016 and convicted on terrorism charges in relation with a coup attempt in Turkey on July 15, 2016. He was sentenced to three years in prison. Brunson has denied the charges.

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  • UN Ambassador Nikki Haley Resigns

    US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley’s resignation on October 9 caught many, including some within US President Donald J. Trump’s Cabinet, by surprise. She will leave the post at the end of the year.

    Haley, a former governor of South Carolina and the daughter of Indian immigrants, at times struck an independent position from Trump, but was also a prominent supporter of the president.

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  • Led by Leftists Since 2003, Brazil Could Soon Get a Far-Right President

    Jair Bolsonaro, a far-right populist who has been compared to Donald J. Trump, won the first round of the presidential election in Brazil on October 7, but fell just short of the majority required to avoid a second-round runoff. The former army captain will face left-wing Workers’ Party (PT) candidate, Fernando Haddad, in a runoff on October 28.

    Bolsonaro belongs to the Social Liberal Party (PSL). He has a history of making incendiary remarks about women, minorities, and gays; he has also promised to get tough on crime and corruption. He won just under 47 percent of the vote, his closest competitor, Haddad, got 28 percent.

    “Bolsonaro’s near victory in the first round shows Brazilians are fed up with insecurity and corruption, and desperately want their economic fortunes reversed,” said Jason Marczak, director of the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center.

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  • Western Nations Go On the Offensive Against Russian Cyberattacks

    Atlantic Council’s Ben Nimmo warns: polarization is America’s Achilles’ heel

    Western governments on October 4 unleashed a torrent of accusations against Russia saying its intelligence agency was responsible for cyberattacks on inquiries into Olympic doping, a former spy’s poisoning, and the downing of a commercial aircraft in 2014.

    The US Justice Department indicted seven Russian intelligence officers on charges of hacking anti-doping agencies and other organizations.

    Earlier in the day, Dutch authorities accused four Russians, who they said belonged to Russia’s military intelligence agency, the GRU, of attempting to hack into the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

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  • So Much for US-Iran Amity

    Trump administration pulls out of 1955 treaty with Iran

    US President Donald J. Trump’s administration said on October 3 it was terminating the 1955 Treaty of Amity with Iran. Announcing the decision, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo noted “the absolute absurdity” of remaining in the treaty given the prevailing high tensions between the United States and Iran.

    Later, speaking at the White House, US National Security Advisor John Bolton accused Iran of having made a “mockery” of the treaty “with its support for terrorism, provocative ballistic missile proliferation, and malign behavior throughout the Middle East.”

    “Theater is part of diplomacy,” said William F. Wechsler, interim director of the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East.

    “In this case, we have a largely symbolic US action regarding a mainly obsolete treaty in response to another largely symbolic Iranian action regarding a generally ineffectual...

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  • South Sudan’s First Vice President Optimistic About Peace, But No One is Buying It

    Atlantic Council’s Damon Wilson urges release of former Millennium Fellow

    On a visit to the Atlantic Council in September 2016, South Sudan’s First Vice President Taban Deng Gai had a clear message for his interlocutors in Washington: “What we tell them is, ‘Look, there is peace. Let us not allow that to collapse.’”

    Deng spoke even as the death toll in South Sudan’s civil war steadily mounted. The war, which broke out in December 2013, was triggered by the bitter rivalry between South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, and his on-again-off-again First Vice President Riek Machar. A new study backed by the US State Department concluded that at least 382 900 people have died since 2013; millions have been displaced.


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  • A Modernized NAFTA

    The new trade agreement between the United States, Canada, and Mexico “modernizes” the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and lifts a cloud of uncertainty that has lingered over the past several months, according to Earl Anthony Wayne, a nonresident senior fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Program.

    In negotiations that went down to the wire, Canada agreed on September 30 to join the United States and Mexico in a revised version of NAFTA. The new agreement will be referred to as the United State-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

    “Overall, each of the three countries showed flexibility, can claim wins from the new agreement, and gave up preferred positions to reach agreement,” said Wayne, who served as the US ambassador to Mexico from 2011 to 2015.

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  • Meet the New NAFTA: The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement

    Canada agreed, moments before the clock ran out on a September 30 deadline, to sign on to a trade agreement between the United States and Mexico that would replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The new agreement will be known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement or USMCA.

    US President Donald J. Trump announced the deal at the White House on October 1 describing it as a “brand new deal to terminate and replace NAFTA.” With this breakthrough, Trump has fulfilled his campaign promise to rewrite NAFTA, which he has called “the worst trade deal in history.” The new agreement was negotiated “on the principle of fairness and reciprocity,” said Trump.

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