Rising Political Risk for Miners in Zambia

The 2011 election of President Michael Sata and the Patriotic Front (PF) government in Zambia turned out to be one of the most negative events for foreign investors in the country. Not only did the Sata government expropriate properties, re-nationalise assets, and rack up debt and inflation – they also sought to tighten control over […]

Venezuela and the Limits of Sanctions

As the a new sanctions bill against specifically targeted Venezuelan government officials has now cleared both houses of the legislature (a rare event indeed) and is headed to President Barack Obama’s desk for signing, a wide range of reactions have come forward, from conspiracy mongering to the familiar cries of imperial oppression. While sanctions are […]

Austrian Press Reports on Stephan Templ Case

During a trip to Austria this week, I had the pleasure of speaking with Eric Fey of Der Standard about the persecution of my client, the Jewish activist and author Stephan Templ. The interview, in German, can be read here. As I said in the interview, the case against Templ is a clear legal scandal […]

An Open Letter to the Austrian Attorney General

The prosecutors in this case have committed multiple errors in both factual and legal matters, resulting in the unfair persecution of Stephan Templ.

THE TPPA: TRADING AWAY NEW ZEALAND’S INDEPENDENCE

This new paper addresses the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and its impact on New Zealand ahead of a critical election.

Russia’s ‘Irredentism’

This week Strobe Talbott has an extensive piece in Politico on the background of Vladimir Putin’s worldview. Despite Talbott’s past myopia on Russia, there are some interesting arguments in the long article, including the following issue of “irredentism” as a driving force for Russia’s habit of invading neighboring nations. The best word for what might […]

Historical Memory in Thailand and Guatemala

Guatemala and Thailand share a fascinating common history of repeated, violent military coups and heavy U.S. involvement as a result of the Cold War, creating a lingering distortion in each nation’s political culture

Defning Modern Authoritarianism

Writing in Bloomberg View, Leonid Bershidsky argues that more and more emerging economies are led by people modelling themselves after the leadership style of Vladimir Putin – Narendra Modi, Najib Razak, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, to name a few. Bershidsky ventures into the phenomenology of modern authoritarians – which, contrary to old school dictators, rely on […]

$50 Billion Yukos Ruling Could Change Russian History

The case is not only one of the largest ever rulings against a sovereign, it also means that Yukos shareholders could start seizing assets across Europe.

‘Oligarchs’ Are Not a Unitary Class

Allow me a moment to register shock and disdain for the front page of today’s Times of London, which broadly declares, “Cameron Under Pressure to Punish Putin Oligarchs,” lending to other misleading coverage ramping up unchecked Russophobia in Britain in response to the horror of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. We have seen before the dangers […]