Middle East & North Africa

6 Items

Policy Brief - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Why America Should Not Retrench

| March 2013

The United States' extended system of security commitments creates a set of institutional relationships that foster political communication. Alliance institutions are first about security protection, but they also bind states together and create institutional channels of communication. For example, NATO has facilitated ties and associated institutions that increase the ability of the United States and Europe to talk to each other and to do business. Likewise, the bilateral alliances in East Asia also play a communication role beyond narrow security issues. Consultations and exchanges spill over into other policy areas. This gives the United States the capacity to work across issue areas, using assets and bargaining chips in one area to make progress in another.

Gen. David Petraeus, left, coalition forces commander in Afghanistan, and U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates at his arrival in Kabul, Mar. 7, 2011. Gates began a 2-day visit to gauge war progress as the Obama administration ponders troop level reductions

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Resurrecting Retrenchment: The Grand Strategic Consequences of U.S. Decline

| May 2011

"Husbanding resources is simply sensible. In the competitive game of power politics, states must unsentimentally realign means with ends or be punished for their profligacy. Attempts to maintain policies advanced when U.S. relative power was greater are outdated, unfounded, and imprudent. Retrenchment policies—greater burden sharing with allies, less military spending, and less involvement in militarized disputes—hold the most promise for arresting and reversing decline."