10 Items

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Analysis & Opinions - MSNBC.com

Nicholas Burns: Trump's Wiretap Allegation Is "The Most Dishonest Statement that the President Has Made"

| Mar. 16, 2017

"When in American history has a president accused his predecessor of a felony, of breaking the law? This is unfair to President Obama, who did no such thing. It's unfair to the American people that our president -- our current president -- would stoop so low. And then to prevaricate again and to allege again that there's information forthcoming. This is not serious. It's not how a president should act. It's shameful behavior."

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

Trump’s cuts would cripple the country’s diplomats when we need them most

| March 4, 2017

The Trump Administration’s threatened 37 percent budget cuts for the State Department and USAID, the most severe for any federal agency.  Professor Burns warns if these reductions are implemented, they will cripple the Foreign and Civil Service when we need them the most to cope with a weakening Europe, violent Middle East and strategic challenges to U.S. power from Russia and China.  He warns that this is simply not a sensible or wise path.

As President Kennedy said more than a half century ago:  “Diplomacy and defense are not substitutes for one another.  Either alone would fail.”

Hillary Clinton at Harvard

Tom Fitzsimmons


Nicholas Burns welcomes Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton to Harvard

| Mar. 03, 2017

On Friday, March 3, 2017, the Harvard Kennedy School was proud to host former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on campus.  She met with Harvard undergraduates in a session sponsored by the Institute of Politics.  Professor Nicholas Burns and his American Secretaries of State Project co-chairs, Professor Bob Mnookin of Harvard Law School and Professor Jim Sebenius of Harvard Business School, conducted a lengthy video interview with her on the major negotiations she led as Secretary. They then hosted a lunch with Harvard Deans, Professors and students to honor her extraordinary public service to our country.

Here are Professor Burns's remarks at the lunch that paid tribute to her accomplishments as Secretary of State.

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Analysis & Opinions - NPR.org

After Missile Launch, White House Warns Iran But Offers No Action Plan

| Feb. 02, 2017

Nicholas Burns talks with NPR's All Things Considered 

The White House says it's putting Iran officially "on notice" after its missile launch over the weekend. But officials offered no details on what exactly that means, or whether military options are on the table. It's another example of what's already emerging as a pattern for the Trump administration: coming out swinging with tough words, before having consulted or decided on an actual policy.

Paper - Harvard Business School

Henry A. Kissinger as Negotiator: Background and Key Accomplishments

| Dec. 12, 2016

Following a brief summary of Henry A. Kissinger’s career, this paper describes six of his most pivotal negotiations: the historic establishment of U.S. diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China, the easing of geopolitical tension with the Soviet Union, symbolized by the signing of the first Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (“SALT I”), the limited success of the SALT II negotiations, the mediation after the 1973 Arab-Israeli war of the agreement on Sinai disengagement between Egypt and Israel and of the Israel-Syria Separation of Forces Agreement, and the Paris Peace Accords to end the Vietnam War.

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Paper - Harvard Business School

Henry Kissinger's Negotiation Campaign to End the Vietnam War

| Dec. 12, 2016
President Richard M. Nixon was elected in 1968 with the widespread expectation that he would bring about an end to the costly and unpopular war in Vietnam. The task largely fell to National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger. When the negotiations began, North Vietnam appeared to have a winning hand with time on its side. To induce agreement from North Vietnam on acceptable terms, Kissinger orchestrated a complex negotiation campaign with multiple fronts: North Vietnam, the U.S. public and Congress China, the USSR, West Germany, and South Vietnam. Kissinger’s efforts culminated in the signing of the 1973 Paris Peace Accords, which held for about two years before collapsing in the wake of Watergate. The account in this working paper carefully describes — but does not analyze nor draw lessons from — core features of these challenging negotiations. Forthcoming papers will provide analysis and derive general insights from this negotiation campaign.