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How Islam Will Change Russia

Russia is becoming increasingly a Muslim country. Out of a total population of over 146 million (including two million in annexed Crimea), it counts about 15 million people of Muslim background—even if not all are believers and even fewer practice Islam. Given forthcoming demographic changes,... MORE

Understanding the Origins of Wahhabism and Salafism

The phenomenon of Islamic terrorism cannot be adequately explained as the export of Saudi Wahhabism, as many commentators claim. In fact, the ideological heritage of groups such as al-Qaeda is Salafism, a movement that began in Egypt and was imported into Saudi society during the... MORE

Bhutan’s Relations With China and India

The 14th Dalai Lama’s April 4-13 visit to Tawang in the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, over which China lays claim, drew thousands of followers. Among these were some 3,000 Bhutanese, who trekked across mountains to see the Tibetan spiritual leader (India Today, April... MORE

Russia’s Tu-160 Strategic Bomber Faces Development Problems

Russia’s nuclear weapons modernization program raises suspicions and fear internationally. This process, however, faces serious difficulties. A case in point is the Tu-160 strategic bomber, whose maker, Joint Stock Company (JSC) Tupolev, has had trouble fulfilling the necessary modernization and repairs on this nuclear-capable aircraft... MORE

Russian Air Defense and the US Strike on Al-Shayrat

Moscow’s reaction to the United States’ cruise missile strike on a regime target in Syria, on April 7, has proved both swift and predictable: ranging from condemning an “act of aggression,” to suspend the bilateral de-confliction agreement and promising to further boost Syria’s air defense... MORE
China's Western Theater Command

Snapshot: China’s Western Theater Command

Despite continuing high-level meetings between China and India’s military, Beijing has not settled its border disputes with India, and continues aggressive military activity along the disputed border regions (China Military Online, November 22, 2016). This is despite China’s resolution of most disputed land borders including... MORE

Chechen Special Battalions Sent to Syria as Reinforcements

The press and government officials in Moscow are applauding the seemingly imminent and total defeat of Syrian opposition fighters in eastern Aleppo. Forces loyal to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, together with Iranian-led and financed Shia militias from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Lebanese Hezbollah, have... MORE

AQAP in Southern Yemen: Learning, Adapting and Growing

During the nearly two years of the Yemeni civil war, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has gone from an organization that was under pressure and struggling financially, to an organization that is larger, more formidable and better armed than it has ever been. The... MORE