On the Black Sea

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I have just awakened on the first day following a 24-hour trip from Austin to Constanta, a city in Romania that few Americans know of. It is where the Danube meets the Black Sea, and it has been a pivot point since before even the Romans arrived. The Danube is something like the American Mississippi, a river drawing in the waters and the trade of the tributaries that flow from the Alps and Carpathians. It reaches the Black Sea, which is where the similarity ends. The Mississippi reaches the Gulf of Mexico, which opens on the waters of the world. But the Black Sea is an enclosed body of water from which the Mediterranean Sea can be accessed only through the narrow Bosporus, and the world’s oceans only through the Strait of Gibraltar. (click to enlarge) The Mississippi trades with the world. The Danube trades mostly within the Black Sea Basin, which today is a body of glowering mistrust, much as it has always been. The Ukrainians and Russians are to the north; Bulgarians and Turks to the south; and across the sea, Georgia and the Caucasus, where Russians, Turks and Iranians have battled for domination for centuries. These nations […]

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George Friedman

George Friedman is an internationally recognized geopolitical forecaster and strategist on international affairs and the founder and chairman of Geopolitical Futures.

Dr. Friedman is also a New York Times bestselling author. His most recent book, THE STORM BEFORE THE CALM: America’s Discord, the Coming Crisis of the 2020s, and the Triumph Beyond, published February 25, 2020 describes how “the United States periodically reaches a point of crisis in which it appears to be at war with itself, yet after an extended period it reinvents itself, in a form both faithful to its founding and radically different from what it had been.” The decade 2020-2030 is such a period which will bring dramatic upheaval and reshaping of American government, foreign policy, economics, and culture.



His most popular book, The Next 100 Years, is kept alive by the prescience of its predictions. Other best-selling books include Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe, The Next Decade, America’s Secret War, The Future of War and The Intelligence Edge. His books have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Dr. Friedman has briefed numerous military and government organizations in the United States and overseas and appears regularly as an expert on international affairs, foreign policy and intelligence in major media. For almost 20 years before resigning in May 2015, Dr. Friedman was CEO and then chairman of Stratfor, a company he founded in 1996. Friedman received his bachelor’s degree from the City College of the City University of New York and holds a doctorate in government from Cornell University.