Political risk must-reads

By Ian Bremmer
April 5, 2013

Eurasia Group’s weekly selection of essential reading for the political risk junkie – presented in no particular order. As always, feel free to give us your feedback or selections by tweeting at us via @EurasiaGroup or @ianbremmer. 

Must-reads

Is This a Pandemic Being Born?” – Laurie Garrett, Foreign Policy

In the past few weeks in China, we’ve seen over 15,000 dead animals pulled out of China’s polluted rivers, with vast distances between discoveries. Recently, three people have contracted a virus strain that previously did not affect humans. Explanations from government officials have been as murky as the polluted water itself. This piece doesn’t claim that we can draw a firm connection between these events… but it argues that we certainly cannot rule it out. 

Jobs Alone Do Not Explain the Importance of Manufacturing” – Scott Andes and Mark Muro, Brookings

The U.S. manufacturing sector makes up just 11% of the American economy—but it represents about 60% of U.S. exports and 68% of private sector research and development.  Does the rigid focus on manufacturing’s job creating capabilities tell the whole story?

Inside the cult of Kim” – The Economist

As provocations from the North Korean regime make international headlines, what is life like on the ground in Pyongyang? 

Arming for Virtual Battle: The Dangerous New Rules of Cyberwar” – Thomas Darnstaedt, Marcel Rosenbach and Gregor Peter Schmitz, Spiegel

It looks like someone’s hiring: U.S. Cyber Command at the Pentagon did not exist four years ago. Today it has 900 employees. In the next few years, that number is expected to rise to 4,900.

Hagel: U.S. ‘has grown weary of war and skeptical of foreign engagements’” – Jorge Benitez, Atlantic Council

In this collection of excerpts from Chuck Hagel’s speech at the National Defense University on April 3rd (full transcript here), Hagel addresses key questions: What is America’s role abroad as it becomes more hesitant to engage in global affairs? How has the American military—and the challenges it faces—evolved since 9/11?

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