The end of the year is fast approaching. In many respects 2016 has been a year for the ages. A failed coup attempt in Turkey, Russia’s expanding involvement in Syria, ISIS lashing out abroad as its territory in Syria and Iraq contracts, the death of Fidel Castro, Brexit and the resurgent populist fervor across the West. And last, but certainly not least, the historic 2016 US presidential election. Some of these events were anticipated, while others came out of nowhere and broadsided us. The crises, conflicts, and other events of 2016 will set the foundation for the challenges ahead in 2017.
For December, 2016 my plan is to look at some of those challenges and give readers a broad idea of what lies ahead on the horizon. I also want to devote some attention to defense issues. Specifically, how President-elect Trump’s promises to rebuild the US military could pan out. I will also touch on Russia’s ongoing efforts to modernize its armed forces, and the declining numbers and capabilities of Britain’s Royal Navy.
Current hot spots will also be discussed and updated: Aleppo and Mosul, a tale of two cities enduring unimaginable horrors. Kashmir, the flaring up of tension there has sparked concerns of a larger Indo-Pakistani conflict. Post-Castro Cuba, a look at what the future will hold for the island nation in the wake of Castro’s death.