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Gabriella Turrisi

The Graphic Truth: As US arms Taiwan, China arms itself

The White House announced on Friday that it plans to sell Taiwan $1.1 billion worth of new weapons, its biggest arms sale to the self-governing island since President Joe Biden took office. It's also the first since China upended the status quo in the Taiwan Strait in response to US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's uber-controversial trip to Taipei.

For decades, the US has sold weapons to Taiwan over China's strong objections. While Beijing claims the island is part of the People's Republic of China, Washington does not take a position on the question of Taiwan's sovereignty, holding that the issue should be resolved peacefully by both sides — while supporting Taiwan's self-defense capabilities. But tensions between Washington and Beijing over Taiwan have been rising as the US-China relationship deteriorates more broadly.

If China were to someday invade Taiwan — which it regards as a renegade province that sooner or later will be brought under mainland control — would the US come to the island's defense? A 1979 law provides "strategic ambiguity" on whether America would have to do so. In the meantime, US arms sales have bolstered Taiwan's defense deterrent while China's military budget has skyrocketed.

We take a look at US military sales to Taiwan compared with China's own defense spending since 1990.

Boris Johnson Is Going to Be Out, One Way or the Other | World In :60 | GZERO Media

Boris Johnson is going to be out, one way or the other

Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on World In :60:

First, will Boris Johnson step down?

I certainly think it is getting likely. He's going to be out, one way or the other. The question is, is it as a result of a second in one month no-confidence vote that he loses this time around, or he reads the writing on the wall, knows he's going to get voted out and so decides to resign himself. If you made me bet, I think he's going to resign, but he might well just force them to do it. He's lost… a majority of conservative voters in the United Kingdom now want Boris Johnson to step down. He's had scandal after scandal after scandal, lied, been caught lying about so many of those scandals, and it's just a disaster, frankly. While the economy's doing badly, while Brexit has not played out the way he said it would, this is a man that has well passed his sell-by date and I don't expect he will be there as prime minister for much longer.

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Ari Winkleman

The Graphic Truth: Tourists trickle back into the US

The global tourism industry got pummeled during the pandemic. Economies reliant on international visitors for a large chunk of their GDP were hit particularly hard. But after more than two years of restrictions, scenes at airports around the world today suggest that the travel bug is back. Still, looking at data from the US — a top destination for global travelers — it’s clear that the revival will be slow going. We take a look at international arrivals to the US from 2000 to March 2022.

This comes to you from the Signal newsletter team of GZERO Media. Subscribe for your free daily Signal today.

Why We’re in the Current Food Crisis — And Who Could Fix It | Hunger Pains | GZERO Media

Why we're in the current food crisis — and who could fix it

Sylvain Charlebois knows a thing or two about food. He's a professor at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, and tweets as @FoodProfessor. So, what does he think about the current global food crisis?

It started two years ago, when COVID disrupted supply chains, but the acute shortages that are driving up prices are more recent, he explained in a conversation for GZERO with Diana Fox Carney, Senior Advisor at Eurasia Group.

Why? Charlebois cites climate issues that hurt inventories, higher shipping costs due to the COVID hangover of weakened supply chains, Russia's war in Ukraine pushing prices up across the board, and "nationalistic hoarding" of staples by certain countries.

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No Second-Class Citizens: The Challenge of Diversity in Democracy | GZERO World

No second-class citizens: the challenge of diversity in democracy

In his new book The Great Experiment, political scientist Yascha Mounk digs into how tough it is for very diverse democracies to treat all their citizens equally. The price to pay if it goes wrong is high: society falls apart.

The US faces many ongoing challenges, especially on race relations, but has done much better in some areas than was predicted decades ago – for example, the increasing frequency of interracial marriages, Mounk tells Ian Bremmer.

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Does the EU really have a foreign policy?

For decades, European leaders have debated the question of whether Europe should have a common foreign policy that’s independent of the United States.

Germany, the UK, and countries situated closest to Russia have traditionally preferred to rely on membership in NATO and US military strength to safeguard European security at a cost affordable for them.

French leaders, by contrast, have argued that, with or without NATO, Europe needs an approach to foreign policy questions that doesn’t depend on alignment, or even agreement, with Washington.

There are those within many EU countries who agree that Europe must speak with a single clear voice if the EU is to promote European values and protect European interests in a world of US, Chinese, and Russian power.

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Laura Yasaitis: China’s Pandemic Playbook Will Fail With Omicron | Top Risks 2022 | GZERO Media

China’s pandemic playbook will fail with Omicron — Laura Yasaitis

China's zero-COVID strategy was a major success story in 2020-21. But it won't work with the new omicron variant, according to Eurasia Group healthcare consultant Laura Yasaitis.

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Podcast: How we got here: Evaluating 1619 and US history with Nikole Hannah-Jones

Listen: When Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times journalist Nikole Hannah Jones published the “1619 Project” in 2019, not even she could have predicted its cultural impact. It’s hard to think of another piece of modern journalism that has garnered such praise while also sparking such intense outrage. Now, her new book, The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story, expands upon her initial work. She joins Ian Bremmer for an in-depth look at how she’s trying to reshape US history, and the backlash it has caused.

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