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Map of world oil reserves 17, January 2008

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Oil.
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This map equates a countries oil reserves with geographical size.

Oil Reserve Map

Indian Soft Power 17, January 2008

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Soft Power.
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An excellent article on Indian soft power.


China is building up its soft power in Russia 17, January 2008

Posted by thegulfblog.com in China, Soft Power.
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China are setting up a new television channel aimed at promoting China and its culture in Russia, it was announced. This is one aspect of a vast programme that China has been undertaking for years now to expand the attractiveness of China as a brand and to make China an easier, more approachable, more understood place to trade and work. This kind of programme has been especially prevalent in South East Asia in recent years. There are countless examples of exchanges of diplomats being offered as well as scholarships being set up for students and officials from various countries to go and study in China. The idea being that the more familiar foreign officials and foreign nationals are with China the more they will trade with them and come to rely on them as a whole.

“The channel will focus on news about Sino-Russian relations, how to do business in China, programs teaching the Chinese language, series on China’s art, culture, history, places of interest, and also well-chosen Chinese movies, teleplays, and cartoons. There will also be talk shows on hot issues discussing problems emerged during Sino-Russian exchanges.”


A riposte to Gallic arrogance 17, January 2008

Posted by thegulfblog.com in French IR.
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Mshari al Zaydi, the editorial editor for the Saudi daily ‘al Sharq al Awsat’ neatly summed up the hubris of Sarkozy’s intrepid international dealings in recent times. Indeed, this quote needn’t be restricted to this particular situation: simply replace country specific terms, in this case Syrian, with issues in Chad, the Emirates, Bulgaria, Libya, Colombia…

“If Sarkozy believes that he is more informed than the rest of the Arab countries that have repeatedly tried to have faith in the promises of Bashar Assad to no avail, then he is surely deluded. If he thought that he could tempt the Damascene regime to change then he is surely deluded.