Issues - International Reports
The announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump that Jerusalem will be recognised as the capital of Israel and the subsequent reactions from various political and religious gropus have once again shown: both spheres – politics and religion – have always been closely interwoven, not only in Christianity, but also in Islam, Judaism, and other religions. Even in the 21ˢᵗ century, it is hard to imagine politics without any religious dimension, and religion without politics, in many parts of the world.
Water. Power. Conflict.
Some 30 years ago, Boutros Boutros-Ghali – who went on to become UN Secretary General – predicted that the wars of the future would be fought over water. His prediction has not yet come true, but when we look at the various regions of the world, it is clear water is becoming an increasingly scarce resource that is indeed at the centre of many conflicts – or is at least exacerbating them significantly.
The Fight for Democracy
Democracy is not a matter of course, as a glance beyond our immediate horizon illustrates. To paraphrase Konrad Adenauer, democracy must be filled with life every day and, where necessary, defended vigorously, both internally and externally.
As Europe became more unified, Germany made strides in overcoming the country’s division and the processes of globalisation became all-pervasive, the last few decades have been characterised by increasingly disappearing boundaries. This development now seems to have stalled. The major migration movements of the last few years, the annexation of Crimea in contravention of international law, the Brexit vote, the proliferation of isolationist voices within and outside Europe – however different these phenomena may be in principle, they have one thing in common: they illustrate that borders and boundaries still have considerable significance.
Demographic Change: A Fateful Challenge
As long ago as August 2006 at a federal press conference Angela Merkel stated “anyone who knows how to successfully manage demographic change is to be congratulated”. Today, ten years later, the need to confront the challenges posed by demographic change has not lost its urgency. On the contrary, while global population numbers continue to rise, the German and European populations are shrinking and ageing.
Rise and Fall of Regional Powers
A constant struggle for power and influence between states has always figured among the main characteristics of international politics. Regional powers can be considered the middle management of world politics: sufficiently powerful to make their mark on the region and take on a political and economic leadership role, but not yet or no longer powerful enough to be able to fill this role at the global level as well. Accordingly, the latest issue of International Reports deals with the topic "Rise and Fall of Regional Powers".
Climate. Energy. Security.
The fight against climate change is not merely a question of ecological necessity but a question of economic reason. It is a question of generational equity, a question of compassion and a question of humanity and its future. These are the aspects Angela Merkel reminded her audience of when she addressed the 21st UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) at the end of 2015. Accordingly, the latest issue of International Reports deals with the topic "Climate. Energy. Security.".
The Globalisation of Terrorism
Preserving that which is worth preserving does not mean cementing the status quo. Anyone seeking to preserve something valuable in the long term must improve it cautiously, yet continuously. This applies as equally to politics as it does to a publication such as International Reports (IR), which is presenting itself in a new form in this issue with its focus on the "Globalisation of Terrorism".
Auslandsinformationen 2015 (Jahresregister)
Europe in Crisis
When we began planning this issue in mid-August last year, the third bailout package for Greece had just been approved and Europeans were on tenterhooks about the “euro crisis”, a term that had come to symbolise the financial and debt crisis. Hardly anyone would have thought at that time that the EU could enter a totally different crisis within just a few weeks – a crisis of unprecedented magnitude.
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
Head of the Department International Reports and Communication