The DailyBrief

Tuesday February 28, 2017

Myanmar’s democratic failings: Many expected miracles when Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government took office after decades of military misrule but the political reality has been more prosaic. Bertil Lintner reports that if Suu Kyi fails to achieve more with democratic reform, economic progress and national unity, it is possible that her long awaited rule in Myanmar will be fleeting.

America’s Iraq legacy: The present ruin of Iraq and Syria is the direct result of the militarizing policies of previous US administrations that bought a temporary peace in Mesopotamia at the price of arming a Sunni resistance that eventually backed ISIS. Asia Times’ columnist Spengler predicted this exact situation in 2007 and here we republish his original article, that is as relevant today as it was ten years ago.

Pyongyang military capabilities: Senior US defense officials, serving and retired, are concerned that the recent focus on North Korea’s military has only looked at missile and nuclear weapons programs. Harry J. Kazianis writes that Pyongyang has other military capabilities, mostly forgotten in the current debate, that could kill millions of people.

South China Sea: Sending the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and its escorts into the South China Sea is an apparent shift from the Obama administration’s policies of accommodation towards China, writes Grant Newsham. Yet in itself, the Vinson patrol doesn’t mean much — unless it is part of a broader, long-term strategy – and the important thing to watch is how the Trump administration’s China policy plays out in the coming months.