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In the Fast Lane? The Tymoshenko Phenomenon

High Inflation and Economic Problems Have Hardly Damaged Her Popularity so far

When Yulia Tymoshenko was elected Ukrainian prime minister for the second time in December 2007, she must have been aware of the fact that the tasks she would be facing in the future would by anything but easy.

Transformation and Civil Society in Poland. Civil Society and the Church as ’Allies’

Some Considerations Based on New Studies

When transformation began in Poland in 1989, it was dedicated to three fundamental objectives: Introducing a liberal democracy under the rule of law, building a market economy, and establishing a civil society with the capacity to take action. While the nation has come considerably closer to the first two objectives despite certain problems, the road towards a civil society appears somewhat rockier, for the extent to which it has been implemented so far is not satisfactory.

Brazil´s Boom

Brazil is making the grade: The economy is doing just fine, and consumer spending is growing. Thanks to its numerous natural resources, its enourmous spread of cultivated land, and the slow but steady renewal of its manufacturing industry, the country today offers a rich assortment of goods that are in great demand and command high prices worldwide.


Ausgabe 4/2008 der Auslandsinformationen der Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung

Escalation and Spontaneous Fraternization in the Andes

Die Region im Dilemma zwischen antiterroristischem Kampf und caudillistischen Konfrontationen

When tension escalated between Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela in March of this year, threatening to turn the countries’ worst diplomatic crisis so far into a military conflict, the world became aware of the instability of this region, which is divided by a deep political and ideological rift. And yet: Only one week after Raúl Reyes, the number two in Colombia’s terrorist FARC, was killed by Colombian units on Ecuadorian territory, the spook came to an end, and the heads of the states involved embraced or at least shook hands.

Guatemala: Hope is the last to die

Although the new Guatemalan leadership under Álvaro Colom Caballeros has only been in office for a little more than two months, the euphoria that attended the change of government appears to have evaporated. Colom and his team keep veering and vacillating, and there is no hint of consistency in the policy of the new President whose slogan ’Your Hope Is My Mission’ won him and his party, Unidad Nacional de la Esperanza (UNE), more than half of the Guatemalan vote in the elections.

Mexico: Reforms and Block-Heads

After nearly eighteen months in office, the image projected by the Mexican government under Felipe Calderón is one of unity and efficiency. However, the devotion to duty of its ministers is not least among the reasons why they are hardly known to the general public and rarely hit the headlines. It was to reestablish himself and his team in the minds of the Mexican population that the President initiated a spectacular cabinet reshuffle a short while ago.

The Peacemaker from Venezuela

Domestic-Policy Motives for Foreign-Policy Escalation

It was not only for foreign-policy reasons that Venezuela’s President, Hugo Chávez, took advantage of Colombia’s military action against FARC fighters on Ecuadorian territory and the subsequent conflict between Bogotá and Quito to interfere and provoke a crisis in the region.

A Survey of Vietnam's Development in Recent Years

Throughout the last two decades, Vietnam has been undergoing a process of profound transformation which affects not only the economy of the country but also, and increasingly so, its political, social, and cultural life. The considerable rate at which the economy has been growing in the last six years indicates the impact of this process. In foreign policy, the country has completed a radical change of course: Having effected a reconciliation with the People's Republic of China, normalised its relations with the USA, and joined ASEAN, it now enjoys international recognition

Applying Germany’s Experience in the Middle Eastern/Mediterranean Region in European Foreign and Security Policy

When France’s president, Mr Sarkozy, presented his country’s initiative to form a Mediterranean union, Germany’s chancellor, Mrs Merkel, was noncommittal. Her critical reserve towards the French idea was probably motivated by both intra-European reasons and her personal experience in dealing with the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean region. Diverse trips to these areas have given Mrs Merkel a feeling for the conditions and problems of our southern neighbours.

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About this series

International Reports (IR) is the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung's periodical on international politics. It offers political analyses by our experts in Berlin and from more than 100 offices across all regions of the world. Contributions by named authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editorial team.

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Dr. Gerhard Wahlers



Benjamin Gaul

Benjamin Gaul

Head of the Department International Reports and Communication +49 30 26996 3584

Dr. Sören Soika


Editor-in-Chief International Reports (Ai) +49 30 26996 3388

Kim Karcher

Portrait von Kim Karcher

Referentin Kommunikation und Vermarktung +49 30 / 2 69 96 - 2387