Author Archives: Damien Kingsbury

About Damien Kingsbury

Army wins Pakistan’s elections

Pakistan’s elections have been run and won … by the Pakistan Armed Forces. The adage that it takes more than elections to have  democracy is ringing true in what many are calling Pakistan’s ‘silent coup’. Former test cricketer and serial political candidate Imran Khan’s Pakistan Movement for Justice (Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf ,or PTI) was on track […]

Australia sends Tamil asylum seeker back to be arrested.

When it comes to asylum seeker policy in Australia, one of its biggest blind spots concerns Sri Lanka and the people, mostly ethnic Tamils, who have been fleeing there in fear of their lives. Sri Lanka continues to marginalize and persecute Tamils, continuing to chase the ghost of the long destroyed Tamil separatist organization the […]

Trump’s Helsinki coup de grace after disastrous European visit

A colleague tried to (seriously) explain Donald Trump’s behavior as possibly reflecting the onset of a serious brain disease. My take is that, while it is difficult to find a rational explanation for his behavior, that let’s him off far too lightly. Trump is emotionally undeveloped, hugely egocentric/narcissistic and a very long way from being […]

The beginning of the end of the Syrian civil war

The surrender of Daraa by Syrian rebels to Syrian government forces marks the beginning of the end of the Syrian civil war. Although the rebel forces remain concentrated in the north and east of the country, the Assad regime will now be able to concentrate its forces and those of its allies to defeat remaining […]

Mexico’s populist victory driven by crime and compensation

Following a global trend against the status quo, Mexicans have overwhelmingly voted in favour of a populist as their new president. The election of former Mexico City mayor, leftist Andrés Manuel López Obrador, with 53% of vote in a five cornered contest, represents an overwhelming rejection of Mexico’s slide into profound violence and corruption. In […]

Turkey moves further away from the West

The election of Recep Tayyip Erdogan as Turkey’s new executive president marks a significant step towards Turkey becoming an autocracy, and further separates Turkey from the West as a strategic partner. Turkey has been an important member of NATO, but it is increasingly doubtful whether it would now act in concert with its alliance partners […]

US-North Korea summit: the hard work is yet to come

President Donald Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-Un have bested their doubters and not only smiled and shaken hands but have signed off on a document committing both to the Holy Grail of contemporary diplomacy – the de-nuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. Both will be able to go home with a win in their pocket and […]

When Trump meets Kim

When President Donald Trump meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, for their meeting to have been deemed a success, all they will have to do is walk away saying they have agreed in principle to some relatively low level matters and leave the details to their officials. That the summit between the two leaders […]

High stakes for the on-off-on US N Korea summit

Short of President Trump changing his mind – again – the meeting between himself and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un looks like it will proceed as originally scheduled in Singapore on or close to 12 June. North Asia, and the world, should be able to breathe a sigh of relief. President Trump’s decision to cancel […]

Why Trump has abandoned the Iran deal

If US President Donald Trump is good at one thing, it’s keeping his word on election promises; the promises may have been utterly crazy, but President Trump does appear to be sincere about trying to deliver. Abandoning the 2015 Iran nuclear deal with the ‘strongest sanctions in history’ is a key case in point. Apart […]