On 05 December, 2022 the Brookings Institute held an online event titled Nonstate armed actors in Iraq, Libya, Yemen, and Syria. It is archived and available to watch by clicking the link. I highly recommend taking the hour and a half to listen to it, no only for the updated information from the Brookings panel on conditions in Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Syria, but also for updates on the continued involvement of Russia and Iran, amongst others, in these and other countries.

Insuring instability by supporting rebels, insurgents, governments, their own mercenary force (Wagner), or some fictional specter in these countries and all around the world is an integral part of Russia’s active, proxy, and hybrid war against… yes, the free world. It has come down to that again. 

Russia must bear responsibity for its crimes.

Russia must bear responsibility for its crimes.

For more background on why no “peace” can be negotiated with Russia, from the Prime Minister of Estonia, Kaja Kallas, see the article on the Foreign Affairs website, No Peace on Putin’s Terms: Why Russia Must Be Pushed Out of UkraineThe article is adapted from a speech given in November, 2022, and reiterates the concerns I have been noting all along, but from the perspective of a country formerly under Soviet rule. If you do not have access the Foreign Affairs website, you can also find the article here.  By the way, a plug here for Foreign Affairs magazine (I receive no money or any sort of backing from them)- a subscription to the magazine which includes 6 annual print issues and unlimited online access is only $45.95 USD per year.  That is an unbeatable value for the quality and amount of information they publish.

Finally for today, on Aljazeera there is an article and infographic that shows how much and where support for Ukraine is coming from. In terms of overall dollars, the US clearly leads. But further down the page the article notes that in terms of GDP, the US contributes .23 percent, whereas Estonia as a percentage of its GDP contributes 1.1 percent. Latvia is just below Estonia with 0.93 percent, Poland with 0.5 percent and Lithuania 0.46 percent of their GDP.