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Highlights Of OEWatch For August 2017

August 9, 2017

The newest issue of OEWatch is preoccupied with Russian technology again with the headline Russian Anti-Access and Area Denial. August runs 60 pages and is divided between six sections. For the first time ever, the editorial team put the Russia, Ukraine section ahead of the rest, thereby supplanting the familiar Middle East, North Africa section. OEWatch is available as a free download from the APAN Community Network.

Editorial duties are shared between Tom Wilhelm and Karen Kaya with layouts by Lucas Winter.

The Russia, Ukraine section begins on page 3 and stretches till page 20. The best parts deal with–as the headline indicated–anti-access technology with an emphasis on electronic warfare. These are from page 3 to 10. Useful insight about the development of new transports for Russia’s next-generation armor is on page 15.

The Middle East, North Africa section opens with the sale of advanced Russian anti-aircraft missile systems to Turkey and Egypt. Iran commands the brunt of attention with entries detailing its politics, domestic and regional, on pages 25, 26, 27, and 28. Page 27 in particular deserves a close read since it reveals how much more money ($7 billion) Tehran has given to the IRGC and its ballistic missile program. The blossoming alliance between Israel and India is discussed on page 30.

The Africa section is unremarkable in scope. Two entries, on pages 31 and 32, are focused on China’s role in the continent. On page 35 is an analysis of an alliance called the G5 Sahel involving Chad, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Mali, and Niger.

The Latin America section has little to offer on ongoing conflicts–the entire continent is at peace. But crime and politics are still prominent. On page 42, however, is an odd overview of ISIS propaganda via mobile apps in South America.

The entries for the Asia-Pacific section are very serious this issue. A budding alliance between India and Japan is assessed on page 41. But much of the section’s coverage is about anything related to China, with an emphasis on space (page 48), military reform (page 50), and the Arctic Circle (page 51). On page 55 is a very critical look at Thailand’s 20-year “National Strategy” that may entrench military government for decades to come.

There’s no longer a Special Essay in this issue. In its place is the often under served Central Asia, Caucasus section which has been expanded to Caucasus, Central and South Asia.

With just four brief entries the content cherry picks from a very broad region. Worth reading is Armenia’s Security Cooperation Dilemma on page 57. It examines Yerevan’s unease with always depending on Russian arms and aid and a recent attempt at closer ties with Iran. Page 58 tries to determine whether Central Asian peacekeepers can assist the Russians in Syria. On page 60 is a brief rundown of ISIS’ propaganda network in India.

OEWatch often runs several dozen stories in a single issue. Readers should download copies to find what’s most relevant to their curiosity.

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