As 2014 draws to a close, today I take a look back at what I opined of 2014 at the end of 2013. My analyses might not have offered the scientific reasoning, charts and boring figures of the six-figure-salaried Think Tank experts - not my intention, but I hoped to provide a "people" perceptive of the way things are, and why, and what could be possible given man's inherent nature to act predictably in many circumstances, thus affecting the state of affairs of global security and stability, the facilitation and action to democracy, freedom, equality and respect of the rights of humankind.
Sometimes last December, I fell short on my analyses of 2014. Many other times, I was correct in determining the actions of nations and actors on the World stage as they impacted international security and stability. Following are a few examples of when I missed and of when I hit the mark on events of 2014.
I was wrong that "...Democrats...will gain a majority in the House of Representatives thus bestowing upon President Obama the legislative cooperation he needs to complete his agenda..." Not only did Democrats lose the House of Representatives to Republicans in the fall 2014 Mid-term Elections, Democrats also lost their majority in the US Senate.
I wrote that prospects "for Comprehensive Immigration Reform will surface in 2014...any legislation emerging will be far flung from being comprehensive." The 113th House of Representative failed to take up the matter. President Barack Obama, through Executive Order, has since sought to shed a beacon of hope on the immigration status of some five million undocumented residents in the US.
It was very easy to determine that the US "will keep an overt presence on the East and South China Seas to honor security arrangements with allies in Asia." And that the US would "encourage Iran to honor international agreements in respect to nuclear materials."
In respect to the deployment of US troops abroad in 2014, I rationalized it should be "looked upon as...the US being the World's stalwart, champion and defender of democracy, of freedom and of the will of the human spirit."
Also with regards to the US, last December I opined: "Equal civil and human rights will be the continued theme into 2014"; but little did I know that the sequence of events in which unarmed Black men and youth were be killed by police, would re-enforce the needed theme of equality and human rights in 2014.
That in 2014: "The Philippines and Vietnam...will both seek greater western alliances as a counter balance to the strength and expansion of China into the waters of the East and South China Seas," was an easy prediction, so was Russia's meddling to create a Custom's Union because of a need for "more trade partners despite its huge oil and gas reserves." It was also easy to note that in 2014 in China, "the aspirations of academics, journalists, Tibetans, Uyghurs and others will continue to frustrate Beijing with their calls for simple democratic freedoms." And with regards to North Korea, I opined: "...no nation can predict the erratic actions of North Korea..."
That the "continent's participation in supranational institutions of the European Union(EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization(NATO) is its greatest stabilizing force for the future", rang true in 2014. So was Ukraine's need to "find a solution to the aspirations of hundreds of thousands..."
Scottish Independence which seemed "50/50" then, ended titling to retain the union with the United Kingdom(UK). In Spain, Catalonia's Independence desire rose. I opined of forthcoming political changes in Turkey.
Syria, Egypt, Israel, Palestine, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan, all had evolving issues in 2014. The Israeli-Gaza conflict killed many innocents and thousands more died in Syria and from direct actions of the Islamic State(IS).
Conflicts from South Sudan to Central African Republic to Nigeria, Somalia and Kenya flourished in 2014. But no analyst could foresee at the end of 2013, the 2014 Ebola Virus epidemic.
Beginning tomorrow, I look toward 2015 with my analyses of what might lay ahead in the New Year. I start with Africa, then Canada and Mexico, then the Caribbean, then Central and South America, then the Middle East, then Europe, then Asia and conclude with the United States. The World in 2015, starts tomorrow.