International Security & Defense

541 Items

In this April 17, 2017, file photo, U.S. forces and Afghan security police are seen in Asad Khil near the site of a U.S. bombing in the Achin district of Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul, File)

AP Photo/Rahmat Gul, File

Analysis & Opinions - Wall Street Journal

Getting an Edge in the Long Afghan Struggle

| June 22, 2017

America’s leaders should not lose sight of why the U.S. went to, and has stayed in, Afghanistan: It is in our national interest to ensure that country is not once again a sanctuary for transnational extremists, as it was when the 9/11 attacks were planned there.

In this Thursday, June 21, 2007 file photo, an F-16 Falcon takes off from Balad Air Base, 50 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq. (AP Photo/ Maya Alleruzzo, File)

AP Photo/ Maya Alleruzzo, File

Analysis & Opinions - The Cipher Brief

U.S. Downing of Syrian Warplane: A “Canary in the Coal Mine”

| June 22, 2017

As U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and Russia-backed Syrian government forces come ever closer to overlap in Raqqa Province and Deir al Zour, The Cipher Brief’s Leone Lakhani spoke with Admiral James ‘Sandy’ Winnefeld – former Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – about what this means for U.S.-Russian relations in the Syrian conflict.

Presidents Trump and Xi shake hands.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Magazine Article - The National Interest

How America and China Could Stumble to War

| Apr. 12, 2017

WAR BETWEEN the United States and China is not inevitable, writes Graham Allison, "but it is certainly possible. Indeed, as these scenarios illustrate, the underlying stress created by China’s disruptive rise creates conditions in which accidental, otherwise inconsequential events could trigger a large-scale conflict. That outcome is not preordained: out of the sixteen cases of Thucydides’s Trap over the last five hundred years, war was averted four times. But avoiding war will require statecraft as subtle as that of the British in dealing with a rising America a century ago, or the wise men that crafted a Cold War strategy to meet the Soviet Union’s surge without bombs or bullets. Whether Chinese and American leaders can rise to this challenge is an open question. What is certain is that the fate of the world rests upon the answer."

Donald Trump

Michael Vadon

Analysis & Opinions - Financial Times

Donald Trump’s welcome show of U.S. global leadership

| Apr. 07, 2017

Nicholas Burns's April 7 op-ed in the weekend edition of the Financial Times on the U.S. cruise missile strikes against the Syrian Air Force. His major points are:

  • He supports President Trump's decision. The U.S. should not tolerate Asad's use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians.
     
  • The Trump Administration needs a strategy for what comes next. They may consider working with Turkey to establish safe havens for civilians protected by a No Flight Zone. This carries enormous risk. Tread carefully.
     
  • The U.S. should push hard to resume UN-sponsored negotiations for a cease-fire and an eventual settlement to end the war. It may take years. But this is how the war will end.
     
  • Trump should reverse course and admit Syrian refugees into the U.S. This is the most direct way to help in the most horrific refugee crisis since World War Two.
     
  • Finally, this often brash and impulsive President should not conclude that the Syria strikes can be replicated easily elsewhere, such as in North Korea.  

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Analysis & Opinions - NPR

WBUR's Radio Boston: Nicholas Burns on U.S. Military Strike On Syria

| Apr. 07, 2017

On Thursday, President Trump ordered a military strike on "the airfield in Syria where the chemical weapons attack was launched." He said that "it is in the vital national security interest of the United States to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons." It was the first direct American assault on President Bashar al-Assad's regime since the Syrian civil war began six years ago.

Nicholas Burns talks with WBUR/Radio Boston. 

Ambassador Douglas E. Lute

U.S. Department of Defense/Senior Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz

Press Release - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Ambassador Douglas E. Lute Named Senior Fellow by Belfer Center's Future of Diplomacy Project

The Future of Diplomacy Project at Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs has named Ambassador Douglas E. Lute a Senior Fellow. While at the Kennedy School, Ambassador Lute will initiate a research project focused on NATO and transatlantic relations that will address the multiplicity of challenges facing the alliance as it approaches its 70th anniversary. He will also share his expertise in security and diplomacy by conducting seminars and study groups with students and fellows.

Syria Chemical Attacks

AP

Analysis & Opinions - NPR

Nicholas Burns and Gary Samore on WAMU's 1A: Is Syria’s President Getting Away With Murder? How Should the U.S. Respond?

| Apr. 06, 2017

Reports suggest Syria’s president Bashar Al-Assad was behind this week’s deadly chemical weapons attack that left dozens of people dead, some of them children. Guests Nicholas Burns and Gary Samore weigh-in: Should the U.S. and other Western nations act now to protect Syrians from further harm?

Analysis & Opinions - Future of Diplomacy Project, Belfer Center

Conversations in Diplomacy: Jake Sullivan on Deconstructing Trump Foreign Policy

| Apr. 03, 2017

Jake Sullivan, Future of Diplomacy Project Senior Fellow, in conversation with Faculty Director Nicholas Burns, attempts to deconstruct the logic behind President Trump's foreign policy decisions.

A Russian military medic inspects a patient near the village of Maarzaf, 15 kilometers northwest of Hama, in Syria, Wednesday, March 2, 2016.

AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin

News

Podcast: Humanitarian Negotiations Series: Negotiation with Non-State Armed Groups at the Frontlines

Dec. 21, 2016

A podcast from the Advanced Training Program on Humanitarian Action produced from a Middle East Initiative event on humanitarian negotiations with non-state armed groups featuring Professor Claude Bruderlein; Ashley Jackson; Stig Jarle Hansen; and Abdi Ismail Isse.