- Tensions in Korea are straining Beijing-Moscow-Washington relations
- An unexpected shock could set the big three nuclear powers against each other
- This situation lays bare Europe’s inherent weakness
The increasingly bellicose standoff between United States President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is sending shock waves throughout the global security system. The ultimate danger is that the confrontation will be pushed to the point of a nuclear conflict. While this risk must still be considered small, the brinkmanship is already causing considerable collateral damage, playing into the triangular relationship between the three superpowers that was a defining feature of the Cold War. The baseline scenario for 2018 is that developments will follow a trajectory defined by three well-established features. Deviations will result only from substantial shocks.