Israel Rafalovich

In pursuit of a nuclear capability

The Arab Spring has shaken the Middle East and an innovative diplomacy is needed today in order to take advantage of the current shifts in the Middle East’s strategic architecture. An increased level of uncertainty has been generated under which most Middle East countries are unwilling to make any concessions with lasting strategic implications. Furthermore,…

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The power of forgiveness in international relations

The argument about war and justice is still a political and moral issue. Decisionmakers and victims alike have to examine the moral issues of warfare and at the same time, with the growing awareness of religion, pay attention to the status of religion on the subject of forgiveness in international relations. The questions that arise…

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Time to talk substance

Two decades have passed and the peace process in the Middle East is still used by the Israelis as a cover to consolidate their presence in the West Bank and Gaza. The peace process came to life after the 1991 Gulf War, but the Israelis developed the strategy to draw out the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in…

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China’s race for nuclear energy

The Chinese economy is in desperate need for energy to keep it growing. With power shortages and blackouts as well as a growing demand for electricity, the Chinese government is looking for new energy sources and nuclear energy stands at the top of the list. The rapid pace of China’s nuclear energy growth is emphasised…

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Iran: Nuclear ambitions and options

In what seems as a move away from previous calls by Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran made a conditional offer of dialogue to the new American administration in Washington saying it was ready for “talks based on mutual respect and in fair atmosphere”. This statement comes following American overtures towards Iran saying the US is…

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Europe, it is time to lead

Something has clearly changed on the international political stage that gives the European Union an unprecedented opportunity to bring stability and an end to a violent conflict in the Middle East, without the need to have someone’s permission to act. Europe is capable of conducting an active foreign policy and has the ability to commit…

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Are church and state reconcilable?

The separation of church and state in an ever-changing society will always be a complicated matter, and has been ever since the idea was new. It remains one of the most universally accepted principles in a democratic system. Accepting, as we do in Europe, the pluralist and multicultural character of the European society today, the…

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In pursuit of happiness

Have you ever reached a crossroad in your life and wondered what would make you happy? All too often, what we thought would make us happy hasn’t, so we have found ourselves on a never-ending quest to grab that carrot that bobs along just beyond our reach. Do we really know? Does that promised happiness…

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Between antagonism and ambivalence: Russia-China relations

For decades the antagonism between Russia and China was a constant of international politics. Such mutual relations tend to be marked by ambivalence. With hardly any other country has Russia fostered contacts with such intensity as with China. External trade relations have developed with similar intensity. Second only to Germany, China has become Russia’s most…

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Rubens’s ‘The Prodigal Son’ revived

The Royal Museum of Fine Art in Antwerp, Belgium, has recently presented a masterpiece of the painter Peter Paul Rubens that was hidden under layers of dirt and coloured varnish but now is a piece of pride of the museum. It is Rubens’s prized painting The Prodigal Son, painted in 1618. It’s a modest-sized work…

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