Atlantic Update 2/7/11


Western powers refrain from demanding Mubarak’s resignation, and a row continues between Japan and Russia over the disputed Kuril Islands.


State multiculturalism has failed, says David Cameron (BBC News)

Europe’s leaders gather for a summit Friday under attack for a slow response to violence in Egypt and for tolerating authoritarian regimes in their backyard as bulwarks against Islamist extremism.

NATO embraces cloud computing (Deutsche Welle)

 THE first successful pirate attack of 2011 could scarcely have come more promptly. In the early afternoon of January 1st, monitors at the Maritime Security Centre-Horn of Africa, based in Northwood near London, picked up distress signals from the MV Blida. 

Afghan handover to start in first half 2011: NATO (Reuters)

A programme for handing over security responsibility in Afghanistan to Afghan forces will be announced in March, with a view to launching the actual process later in the first half of this year, NATO said on Monday.

Brazil and UK ready to sign huge defence contract, say media reports (MercoPress)

If the agreement finally goes through a first deal could involve £ 2.9 billion which includes the purchase of six patrol vessels (£ 60 to £ 80 million) and five or six frigates Type 26 with a unit cost of £ 300 to £ 400 million, similar to those of the Royal Navy.

EU leaders shy away from demanding Mubarak resignation (EurActiv)

Colonization and the effects of the Cold War have prevented the Middle East from “normalizing” until the present day, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said in reference to protests currently engulfing the Arab world.

US, Europe lacked intelligence on Egypt and Tunisia (Deutsche Welle)

Washington’s top military officer has acknowledged that the United States was caught off guard by the uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, but said the armed forces were now closely monitoring developments in the region.

Key Speeches at the Munich Security Conference:

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Afghan President Hamid Karzai


Who is “rude” – Medvedev or Kan? (Voice of Russia)

Japan’s authorities call February 7 “The Day of Northern Territories”.

On this day, Japan’s government and ultra-right organizations usually call on Russia to give the southern Kuril Islands back to Japan.

This time, however, there was more to it than that. Japan’s Prime Minister Naoto Kan called President Medvedev’s recent visit to Southern Kurils “unacceptable rudeness”.

When revolutionary euphoria subsides: Lessons from Ukraine (The Daily Star)

From snowy Kyiv, I have watched the revolutions in Cairo and Tunis with joy and admiration. Egyptians and Tunisians are right to be proud of their desire to peacefully overthrow despotic governments. But as someone who led a peaceful revolution, I hope that pride is tempered by pragmatism, because a change of regime is only the first step in establishing a democracy backed by the rule of law. Indeed, as my country, Ukraine, is now demonstrating, after revolutionary euphoria fades and normality returns, democratic revolutions can be betrayed and reversed.

Compiled with the assistance of Klée Aiken.

Image: transatlantic.jpg