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Ambassador David Saperstein talks TPP, ISIL, and the Next Administration

| Nov. 28, 2016

David Saperstein, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Religious Freedom, spoke on Monday, November 14th at the Harvard Kennedy School on “U.S. Efforts to Promote Religious Freedom Abroad.” In a wide-ranging discussion moderated by Future of Diplomacy Project Executive Director Cathryn Clüver, the diplomat and rabbi explained the importance of religion and human rights as part of an integrated approach to foreign policy.

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.

Company A, 1st Battalion, 77th Armor Regiment, part of Task Force 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment (TF 1-18 IN) board aircraft in Kuwait on 19 OCT 2006 in order to move to Baghdad, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

CC-BY-SA-3.0

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

What Do Politicians Really Mean by 'Global Leadership?'

| September 4, 2015

"...[W]hat I'd really like to know is what the different candidates think about this issue, and hear them explain why U.S. taxpayers should pay a lot more than our allies’ citizens do and how Americans actually benefit from the energetic foreign policy that both GOP and Democratic stalwarts never even question. I'd also like to see reporters give them a good grilling on this topic, and refuse to accept vague or non-specific responses."

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Analysis & Opinions - TIME / time.com

Hirsi Ali: Beware of Michiganistan

| April 1, 2015

Since the massacre at the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January, the U.S. media has understandably devoted attention to the problem of radical Islam in Europe. The fact has been widely reported that thousands of European Union citizens have traveled to Iraq and Syria to join the self-styled Islamic State. Almost as much coverage has been given to stories of French Jews emigrating to Israel. And there have been numerous articles about Michel Houellebecq’s diabolically timed novel Soumission, which imagines France in 2022 with a Muslim president introducing sharia law and being fawned over by the Parisian establishment.

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Just Say No

| March 31, 2015

"...[T]he central challenge in the greater Middle East is the lack of effective and legitimate political institutions — especially in places like Libya, Syria, Yemen, and post-invasion Iraq. Military force is useful for certain purposes, but the ability to blow things up and kill people does not translate into a workable set of governing institutions. In fact, the more the United States relies on military force to 'manage' these problems, the more it encourages others to take up arms against us or against our clients, which in turn allows those with a taste and talent for violence to dominate the political landscape."

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

The Credibility Addiction

| January 6, 2015

"When Washington goes to war on the basis of cooked intelligence, worst-case assumptions, and unsurpassed hubris, then other countries will be warier the next time we try to get them to line up alongside us....If foreign powers believe U.S. policy is driven more by domestic politics than by strategic imperatives, they'll view us with barely veiled contempt and meddle even more in our porous political system."

Book - CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Digital is the New Third Age: Adventures in the Blogosphere

| July 2014

This book is a collection of the author's blogposts from 2008–2013, almost all of them from the Huffington Post and reposted on the website of the Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs by the International Security Program. Most of them deal with the author's particular area of expertise, from Morocco to Bangladesh, but also with Europe and transatlantic issues. A few are film reviews, and others deal with the U.S. Presidency and the Congress.

    President of the United States, Barack Obama, talks with the President of Iran, Hassan Rouhani, during a telephone call in the Oval Office on 27 September 2013.

    White House Photo

    Analysis & Opinions - The Huffington Post

    The Peacemaking Presidency

    | November 25, 2013

    "The Obama Administration is on the way to becoming the peacemaking presidency, after having been handed down two wars (Iraq and Afghanistan) and having been urged to start two others (Syria and Iran). The way the President handled these challenges should ease the way for Hillary Clinton in 2016, should she decide to run."