International Security & Defense

330 Items

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AP

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Trump Has Already Blown It

| Feb. 03, 2017

What these modern-day Jacobins don’t realize, alas, is that destroying institutions is easier than building them. If their assault on our core political traditions and institutions is successful, the United States will at best end up weaker and poorer. At worst, it will cease to be a meaningful democracy. The fact that the generally conservative Economist Intelligence Unit recently downgraded America — that’s right, the "Land of the Free" — from a "full" to a "flawed" democracy tells you just how serious this problem is. Based on the early evidence, Trump and Bannon want to accelerate that trend.

A Royal Air Force Reaper RPAS (Remotely Piloted Air System) at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.

Sergeant Ross Tilly (RAF)

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Separating Fact from Fiction in the Debate over Drone Proliferation

Claims that drones will soon remake warfare or international politics are unwarranted. Although almost a dozen states now possess armed drones, and more are racing to acquire them, they will not play a decisive role in interstate conflicts. Drones will rarely be “winning weapons,” because they are vulnerable to air defenses. States will, however, continue to use drones against terrorists and domestic opponents.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrives for a Conference on Afghanistan in Brussels, Oct. 5, 2016. The 2-day conference, hosted by the EU, will have the participation of over 70 countries to discuss the current situation in Afghanistan.

AP

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

The 2016 Epidemic of Afghan War Amnesia

| October 16, 2016

"...[T]he well-intentioned Western effort to create a new Afghan state from scratch was equally misguided, as the new constitution envisioned a centralized, Western-style government in Kabul that was at odds with Afghan history and traditions. It also presumed a level of administrative competence and a revenue base that far exceeded Afghan capacities. Yet none of the international participants who embraced this outcome seemed to realize they had taken on an unrealistic and open-ended burden and that the new Afghan state would be dependent on lavish outside support more or less indefinitely."

Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders talks to reporters as he arrives at at Quicken Loans Arena before the start of the second day session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Analysis & Opinions - Project Syndicate

Putting the Populist Revolt in Its Place

| October 6, 2016

In many Western democracies, this is a year of revolt against elites. The success of the Brexit campaign in Britain, Donald Trump’s unexpected capture of the Republican Party in the United States, and populist parties’ success in Germany and elsewhere strike many as heralding the end of an era. As Financial Times columnist Philip Stephens put it, “the present global order – the liberal rules-based system established in 1945 and expanded after the end of the Cold War – is under unprecedented strain. Globalization is in retreat.”

In fact, it may be premature to draw such broad conclusions.

Some economists attribute the current surge of populism to the “hyper-globalization” of the 1990s, with liberalization of international financial flows and the creation of the World Trade Organization – and particularly China’s WTO accession in 2001 – receiving the most attention. According to one study, Chinese imports eliminated nearly one million US manufacturing jobs from 1999 to 2011; including suppliers and related industries brings the losses to 2.4 million.

President Barack Obama speaks with Defense Secretary Ash Carter at the start of a National Security Council Meeting on the counter-Islamic State group campaign, Thursday, Aug. 4, 2016

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Why ISIS Fears Israel

| August 8, 2016

In the wake of the Orlando and Istanbul attacks, President Obama reiterated his determination to “destroy” ISIS by executing a strategy that combines air strikes, American special-operations units and support for local ground forces. Both of the candidates campaigning to succeed him insist that the United States must do more: Donald Trump advocates that Washington “bomb the hell out of” the group, while Hillary Clinton promises to “smash the would-be caliphate.” All three, however, are in violent agreement on one point: the overriding objective must be to destroy ISIS.

President Gerald Ford meets in the Oval Office with Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger and Vice President Nelson A. Rockefeller to discuss the American evacuation of Saigon, Oval Office, White House, Washington D.C., April 28, 1975.

White House

Magazine Article - Foreign Affairs

The Case for Offshore Balancing: A Superior U.S. Grand Strategy

| July/August 2016

"For nearly a century, in short, offshore balancing prevented the emergence of dangerous regional hegemons and pre­served a global balance of power that enhanced American security. Tellingly, when U.S. policymakers deviated from that strategy—as they did in Vietnam, where the United States had no vital interests—the result was a costly failure."