Conflicts at home and abroad tinged with unceraintyt

China and Japan Tensions
China is Japan’s largest trading partner, but that fact is not stemming the growing tide of Asian nationalism that may be pushing into a fierce rhetorical battle. But the question for all in the region to consider is whether the conflict could lead to a real war over the disputed islands of Diaoyius?

Michael Mazza, writing in the Diplomat, recently noted that a resolution may not be as easy as it was in 2010 when the nations were embroiled in a showdown following a naval tussle between a Chinese fishing boat and a Japanese Coast Guard vessel.

“Unlike in 2010, there are no obvious steps for Japan to take in  pursuit of de-escalation, which Tokyo clearly wants. Foregoing the  purchase is not a viable option at this point, nor is ceasing regular patrols of the waters around the Senkakus, which Japan has effectively  controlled for the past four decade,” Mazza writes.

Afghanistan
The last remaining troops sent to Afghanistan in 2010 as part of the “surge” have returned to the US leaving approximately 68,000 soldiers in country. But what will happen when the last troops leave Afghanistan for good?

Syria
Air strikes on rebel strongholds killed at least 30 as the the United States and other Western nations are renewing charges that Iran is supplying Syria with military weaponry.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad told an Egyptian newspaper that he was confident the rebels will be defeated and attributed the uprising to the rise of the Arab Spring.

The Fiscal Cliff
House tax writers remain at a standstill on efforts to avert the fiscal cliff, but their colleagues in the Senate believe a deal can be reached. National Pubic Radio has three suggested solutions to mitigate the impact of veering into the fiscal wilderness.

Regulation Costs Higher Than Previously Estimated
A recent study by the Competitive Enterprise Institute finds that regulations cost American taxpayers and businesses an estimated $1.8 trillion per year.

 

 

 

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