September 14, 2023

Citizens for Leverage: Navigating State Hostage-Taking in a Shifting Geopolitical Landscape

A number of states today are unlawfully detaining foreign nationals within their criminal justice systems for use as foreign policy leverage. Often referred to as “hostage diplomacy,” or state hostage-taking, this form of coercive diplomacy is not new in international politics, but its growing prevalence has raised alarm bells among many states, especially Western nations and their allies. This cruel practice places individual citizens at the center of a complicated calculus where…...


July 06, 2023

TSC Insights: France’s Missed Moments In Mali

Why did France fail in Mali? French President Emmanuel Macron’s decision to withdraw his country’s remaining troops from Mali in August 2022 followed a nearly decade-long military mission to combat jihadist insurgents, particularly in the country’s north. France’s failure reflected an inability to define clear and achievable counterterrorism objectives during Operation Barkhane, misaligned public opinion and relations within France and Mali, and indecision among senior policymakers regarding the political status of Sahelian…...


June 25, 2023

Wagner Group: The Evolution Of A Private Army

In an astonishing turn of events starting 23 June 2023, the Wagner Group’s leader Yevgeny Prigozhin declared all-out war on the Russian state, leading a convoy of mercenaries to march straight toward Moscow. The mutiny, which embarrassed Russian President Vladimir Putin and caught the Russian military and security services completely off guard, developed at lightning speed and ended just as quickly, leading to widespread confusion and chaos. After storming through towns and…...


May 08, 2023

TSC Insights: Will Elections Set Turkiye on a New Course?

  Among foreign policy watchers, Türkiye’s upcoming vote for president and parliament could be the most consequential election of 2023. Türkiye’s current leader, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has been president since 2014 and, before that, served as prime minister from 2003 to 2014. In many ways, he has fundamentally reshaped Türkiye’s foreign policy, elevating Ankara on the world stage and cultivating a neo-Ottoman approach to world affairs. If Erdogan wins, foreign policy is…...


February 16, 2023

Form Over Function? Reviewing the UN Global Counterterrorism Strategy

In 2006, UN Member States did something unusual. Despite being unable to agree on a universal definition of terrorism, and having fought over whether terrorism truly had “root causes” or if that rhetoric was a perceived justification for terrorism, they managed to agree upon an overarching “global counterterrorism strategy” (GCTS). The Strategy is based on four pillars outlining measures to prevent and combat terrorism for states and for the wider UN system,…...