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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on Russian escalation of Ukraine strengthening NATO, omicron and the end of COVID-19, and on the most recent military coup in West Africa — Burkina Faso:

How will Russian escalation of Ukraine strengthen NATO?

Well, NATO over the last 10, 20 years even was increasingly beset by problems. You had the US unilateralism focused more on Asia. You had the old mission of defending against the Russians less relevant. The French wanting strategic autonomy. Macron leaning into that. Now, of course, Merkel's gone, too. But the proximate reality in danger of the Russians invading Ukraine, actually, as much as the Europeans are more dependent on the Russians for their economy and their gas, they're also more concerned about Russia in terms of national security. That has driven a lot of coordination, including announcements of a lot more troops and material from being sent by NATO states to Ukraine and also to defend NATO borders, like in the Baltic states as well as Bulgaria and Romania. I would argue that what Putin's been doing so far has had no impact greater than bolstering NATO, and it's one of the reasons why I'm skeptical that a full-on invasion is something that Putin has in the cards because that would frankly do more than anything else out there to make NATO, focused on Russia, a serious and going concern.

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week, discussing Boris Johnson's tenuous status as UK PM, US Secretary of State Blinken's visit to Ukraine, and the volcano eruption in Tonga:

Will Boris Johnson resign?

It certainly looks that way. He's hanging on by his fingernails. He's losing members of Parliament. He's giving shambolic media interviews. In fact, I think the only people that don't want him to resign at this point is the Labour Party leadership, because they think the longer he holds on, the better it is for the UK opposition. But no, he certainly looks like he's going. The only question is how quickly. Is it within a matter of weeks or is it after local elections in May? But feel pretty confident that the days of Boris Johnson are numbered.

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on Boris Johnson's tenure, COVID-19 fatigue, and China's zero-COVID policy and the Winter Olympics:

Is Boris Johnson's tenure as prime minister of the UK on the ropes?

Well, yeah, it increasingly looks like he's not going to last the year. You'd think it would be because of Brexit, you'd think it would be because the economy is going to hell in the UK. Massive inflation, quality of life is going down. No, it's none of those things. It's actually because the British citizens have a really strong sense of fair play. And Boris Johnson has now been caught in a number of different scandals, the most shambolic of which has been a party for some hundred staffers that he denied he was at. Then he said investigators would have to look into it because he didn't know that he was or wasn't in the party. Then he finally admitted it and apologized, but said, "Well, it was bad judgment, but it was really a work event." And of course this is all BS, and he has lost a lot of the support of his own party. His approval ratings are lower than Biden's. They're in the twenties right now. It increasingly looks like there will be an internal party challenge. And they'll want to get rid of him after the worst news for the economy comes out this year, so they don't have to, whoever's coming after him doesn't have to take responsibility. But it does look like Boris Johnson is near the end of his rather ill-fated tenure.

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on the anniversary of the January 6 Capitol insurrection, Trump's endorsement of Viktor Orbán, and Novak Djokovic's avoidance of vaccination rules.

A year later, what should we call the Jan. 6? A coup attempt? A riot? An insurrection? Domestic terrorism?

I think I'd go with an insurrection, since it was the former president, sitting president of the United States who had not been re-elected, claimed he was re-elected, and called on his supporters to march on the Capitol building, and didn't stop them when they occupied it illegally. The whole “Hang Mike Pence” thing does imply insurrection. Doesn't imply domestic terrorism. Very few of them were trying to engage in political violence, though I think certainly, a few were. And a riot by itself doesn't really hit it.

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on Omicron, Putin's antics, and Chile's millennial president.

With Omicron cases increasing, is December 2021 really any different than December 2020?

Of course, it's different. You know why it's different? Because so many more people are vaccinated and so many people have already gotten COVID, which means the likelihood that they're going to be severely hospitalized or die goes way, way down. So we should be worrying less individually about COVID even though the policy impact the shutdown impact for at least a few weeks is going to be very significant. And of course, if you haven't gotten your boosters, get those boosters. Of course if you're not vaccinated, I don't know what a booster's going to do for you. Why am I even telling you that?

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week with a look at Naftali Bennett's first official visit to the UAE, China's response to recent US sanctions, and Elon Musk's chances at Time Person of the Year.

How did Naftali Bennett's first official visit to the UAE go?

Went extremely well. This was probably President Trump's largest and most unexpected foreign policy success, The Abraham Accords, which meant opening diplomatic relations between Israel and the UAE, in addition to other countries in the region. Now we have the prime minister of Israel touching down on an official visit in the UAE, where he met with Mohammed bin Zayed, who is the defacto ruler of all of the Emirates, as well as a lot of other leaders. We're seeing more investment, more tourism, and we're also seeing more intelligence cooperation, especially around issues like Iran, where frankly, both the Arab governments and the Israelis have problems. Big question everyone's watching out for is when are the Saudis going to open up to Israel? The Saudis are really reluctant in part because they feel like that would seed too much ground to Iran on the Palestinian question, and also lead to much more pushback given a much more conservative Saudi population. The UAE is one of the most cosmopolitan populations out there, frankly.

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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week with a look at Biden and Putin's talk, the US boycott of the Beijing Olympics, and the omicron variant.

As Presidents Biden and Putin meet, how are US-Russia relations at the moment?

They're pretty bad. I mean, I would say compared to China where we have lots of mutual interdependence, in the case of Russia, that is not the case at all. The United States does not need Russia economically. The Russians feel like the present geopolitical order, especially in their backyard really doesn't suit them. And Putin also feels like he has more ability to press the Americans harder because Merkel is leaving; energy prices are high. And also because the Europeans coming into winter need Russian gas much more. So for all those reasons, this is going to be a much stroppier, chippier meeting, if you don't mind me using those terms, than we would've seen last time they met in Geneva back in June.

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