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November 07, 2019

U.S. unemployment at 3.7% (August 2019). U.S. stock markets at record levels. Yet something is dramatically wrong with the economy — in the U.S., in Japan, and in the E.U. Low to negative interest rates and exploding inequality suggest a paradigm shift is on the way.
——Marvin Zonis


October 28, 2019

China has mastered the elements of technology that give it the capability for continuous monitoring of the communications, social relationships, physical movements, and more of its population. Simultaneously, President Xi is totally committed to maintaining the rule of the Communist Party and preventing its demise (see the Soviet Union). His system of rule is massively repressive of any fundamental dissent or any attempt to organize its citizens, no matter how small the group. The combination of these three factors suggest that China is approaching true totalitarian rule. The first actual state in history — aside from states in novels — to do so.

--Marvin Zonis


October 18, 2019

Germany has consistently been the world’s most successful exporter while importing relatively little. The result has been that Germany’s current account surplus has been higher than that of any other country. For example, in 2017, Germany’s current account surplus was $296 billion versus $195 billion for Japan and $164 billion for China. Yet despite Germany’s impressive export performance, its economic future appears grim. Its population is shrinking and its economic growth rate is diminishing. Its infrastructure is increasingly decrepit and its export reliance on automobiles and machine tools is no longer sufficient to propel growth. Its largest export market has been China whose growth is diminishing. Even worse, there appears little impetus within the German government to do anything to address these negative forces.
——Marvin Zonis


October 11, 2019

President Trump has sent many tweets about his trade war: “China will never retaliate to U.S. tariffs,” “trade wars are easy to win,” "We are winning, big time, against China,” “China is eating the Tariffs,” “China wants to make a deal so badly,” “China does not want Tariffs!” “We are not in a trade war with China,” and on and on. In fact, China is winning the trade war. The U.S. is the big loser. Read this and weep.

--Marvin Zonis


October 03, 2019

By Marvin Zonis

President Trump has sought a meeting with Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani. But all his entreaties have failed. Rouhani has even refused to leave his hotel room in New York, attending the UN General Assembly Meetings, to avoid even a telephone call with Trump.


September 24, 2019

The General Accountability Office of the federal government (GAO.gov), has carried out many studies on the effects of U.S. sanctions on Iran. The GAO has been skeptical of their utility. Here are excerpts from two reports, one from 2007 and one from 1992. The first report suggests that without strong internal opposition, sanctions tend to be ineffective. Of course, there is no organized internal opposition in Iran.
——Marvin Zonis


September 18, 2019

Here is a stunning piece of investigative journalism in two parts. Part I details the role of North Korea in the building of a nuclear reactor in Syria, ultimately destroyed by Israel in 2007. Part II uncovers the role of North Korea in supplying weapons and technology to Israel’s enemies across the region.
——Marvin Zonis


September 16, 2019

When I was a child, everyone in America knew that “The Greatest Show On Earth” referred to the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus. Now — without doubt — the expression refers to Great Britain. The country’s as of yet unsuccessful efforts over three years to carry out the referendum to leave the European Union has been a spell binding drama. Now, finally, a solution is at hand. Here is a way forward for the U.K. that will ultimately allow it to achieve the goals of the “leavers.”
——Marvin Zonis


September 10, 2019

As has been reported in these pages in the past, China has consistently violated U.S. sanctions on Iran. For example, despite the sanctions, China has supplied Iran with specialty steels which are used as the skin of ballistic missiles. Recent reports suggest that China continues to buy substantial quantities of Iranian oil. But this new announcement seems highly improbable. That China would invest hundreds of billions of dollars in Iran’s oil industry and station security personnel in Iran to protect its investments goes a step too far. Given Iran’s passionate defense of its independence, the idea of Chinese security personnel stationed in Iran is fanciful. But what is certain is that China will continue to be the leading breaker of U.S. sanctions.
——Marvin Zonis


September 05, 2019

The most complete account of the decades long effort to bomb Iran.
——Marvin Zonis


September 04, 2019

Below is a link to the web site my wife and I put together to publicize the sale of our Umbrian home. We would appreciate your circulating the site to anyone you know who might be interested in buying an Umbrian gem. We have listed our home with two realtors — James Stephens at www.ipncastello.com and Riccardo Romolini at www.romolini.com. They will soon post the property with professional photos on their web sites, which can give those interested a fuller idea of what’s on offer. But please have any inquiries directed to me. Thanks and best wishes.
—— Marvin Zonis


August 30, 2019

We are approaching the first anniversary of the reimposition of U.S. sanctions on Iran, following President Trump's withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. As widely predicted, including in these pages, Iran has learned to cope with the intense economic pressures generated by the sanctions. Despite a shrinking economy, popular manifestations of unrest have declined. In short, U.S. policy shows no sign of ending Iran’s aggressive activities across the region or its missile development program. John Bolton’s goal of regime change is as remote as ever.
——Marvin Zonis


August 13, 2019

On the anniversary of the establishment of the IMF, Professor Aliber argues that it has failed in its primary mission — "the need to ensure that changes in the prices of currencies would not lead to significant changes in the competitive position of various foreign countries relative to the United States.”
--Marvin Zonis


July 15, 2019

President Trump seems to demand that Iran return to the nuclear deal of 2015 from which he withdrew.
——Marvin Zonis


Publications

Books

The Kimchi Matters: Global Business and Local Politics in a Crisis Driven World,
co-authors Daniel Lefkovitz and Sam Wilkin, Chicago: Agate Press, 2003

The Eastern European Opportunity, A Complete Guide and Sourcebook,
co-author Dwight Semler, New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1992

Majestic Failure: The Fall of the Shah,
Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1991

Khomeini and the Islamic Republic of Iran,
co-author Daniel Brumberg, Cambridge: Harvard Middle East Papers
, 1987

The Political Elite of Iran.
Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1976
 

Press


Chicago Tribune
"Russian Protests Will Keep Haunting Putin"
April 3, 2017
 
Chicago Tribune
"Mission Creep and the Islamic State"
September 30, 2014
 
Chicago Tribune
"Plenty of Reasons for Ukraine's Grim Future"
March 5, 2014
 
Chicago Tribune
"Iran's New Leaders and the American Response"
August 5, 2013
 
EconoMonitor
"A Beheading in London; A Bombing in Boston: The Transformations of the al-Qaeda Threat"
May 24th, 2013
 
Chicago Tribune
"Realistic Optimism on Nuclear Talks with Iran"
May 22, 2012
 
International Business Times
"Austerity Push in Greece Leaves Citizens Hungry for Alternatives"
February 23, 2012
 
Advisor.ca
"US Economy Poised for Growth"
February 3, 2012
 
Chicago Tribune
"Will Israel Bomb Iran?"
November 13, 2011
 
Chicago Tribune
"MidEast Rulers of a Certain Age" [PDF]
March 6, 2011
 
Chicago Tribune
"Are We Going to Miss Mubarak?"
[PDF]
February 4, 2011
 
 
Archive

Les Echos
"Washington Risque de Regretter Le Depart d'Hosni Moubarak"
[PDF]
February 2, 2011
(French version)
 
Les Echos
"Washington Risque de Regretter Le Depart d'Hosni Moubarak"
 [PDF]
February 2, 2011
(English version)

Credit Suisse
"Middle East and Africa - Regulation Will Influence the
Future of Banking"
[PDF]
June 1, 2010

ROOZ, 1116
"The Iranian People Are Entitled to More Freedom"
[PDF]
February, 2010

The Wall Street Journal
"Russian Ripples Hit U.S. Firms - Sharp Slowdown in Consumer
Spending Is Felt From Cigarettes to Copier"
[PDF]
August 2009

The Mind of a Mullah
June 17, 2009

Focus Trends (Dutch)
"Obama Is Jezus Christus"
[PDF]
February 2009

GSB Magazine
"Faculty Smackdown with Marvin Zonis: From HBS Dropout
to Iran, Nightline, and the GSB"
Part One [PDF]
Part Two [PDF]
January, 2006