It is worthwhile at this juncture to consider the nature of the US presidency and its likely impact on the role of the US in the post-World War II and post-Cold War world order. The issues inherent in the US president’s recent statements and behavior — his fondness for autocrats, dismissal of allies and long-term partnerships, and his embrace of mercantilist approaches to trade —constitute a major break with core bipartisan traditions in US foreign policy.[i] Close advisors to the president articulate broad views of global politics that they define as standing at odds with this tradition.[ii] These developments contribute to a major increase in uncertainty for those who govern amidst disorder.Continue Reading →
On March 8, 2017, Reiner Braun spoke to a group at Tufts University. In a world where global military expenditures top 1.8 trillion dollars, Reiner Braun urged his audience to find common points of understanding to avoid conflict. Braun cited the expansion of NATO alongside European national armies, and the increasing connections between these military […]Continue Reading →
Security: the unmentionable debate
While there are genuine points of disagreement between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump, the centrality of ‘security’ is not one of them. I wish this were not the case.
Both candidates seem to agree that security ought to be the basis of foreign (or even domestic) policy decision-making. They differ, […]Continue Reading →
Under the Obama Administration, we have seen the humanitarian imperative compromised by counter-terror laws and the politics of alliances. In Somalia and Syria, aid agencies were hampered by the PATRIOT Act from operating in areas in which they might be deemed to be providing assistance, material or symbolic, to groups labeled as terrorists. Preventable humanitarian disasters followed. In Yemen, the U.S. has been party to economic warfare conducted by the Saudi Arabia-led coalition, causing famine conditions. In each of these cases, U.S. counter-humanitarianism cost lives, to no political benefit.Continue Reading →
The US is the world’s number one international seller of arms. This is true whichever way you slice the data: using SIPRI’s measure of the volume of major conventional arms transfers, and even more so using the Congressional Research Service estimates of the financial value of orders.
The US distributes its arms widely, selling major […]Continue Reading →
So the US needs a debate on reform of the existing architecture, what strategy to pursue to bring about that reform, and what role the US should play. The debate should take place now, before the US finds itself in a purely reactive mode, responding to initiatives taken by emerging powers and others who are increasingly able to shape the global agenda.Continue Reading →
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