South Asia

12 Items

President Barack Obama and several foreign dignitaries participate in a Trans-Pacific Partnership meeting

Charles Dharapak

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Affairs

Rescuing the free trade deals

| June 14, 2015

The Senate’s rejection of President Wo odrow Wilson’s commitment of the United States to the League of Nations was the greatest setback to U.S. global leadership of the last century. While not remotely as consequential, the votes in the House last week that, unless revisited, would doom the Trans-Pacific Partnership send the same kind of negative signal regarding the willingness of the United States to take responsibility for the global system at a critical time.

The repudiation of the TPP would neuter the U.S. presidency for the next 19 months. It would reinforce global concerns that the vicissitudes of domestic politics are increasingly rendering the United States a less reliable ally. Coming on top of the American failure to either stop or join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, it would signal a lack of U.S. commitment to Asia at a time when China is flexing its muscles. It would leave the grand strategy of rebalancing U.S. foreign policy toward Asia with no meaningful nonmilitary component. And it would strengthen the hands of companies overseas at the expense of U.S. firms. Ultimately, having a world in which U.S. companies systematically lose ground to foreign rivals would not work out to the advantage of American workers.

Both the House and Senate have now delivered majorities for the trade promotion authority necessary to complete the TPP. The problem is with the complementary trade assistance measures that most Republicans do not support and that Democrats are opposing in order to bring down the TPP. It is to be fervently hoped that a way through will be found to avoid a catastrophe for U.S. economic leadership. Perhaps success can be achieved if the TPP’s advocates can acknowledge that rather than being a model for future trade agreements, this debate should lead to careful reflection on the role of trade agreements in America’s international economic strategy.

China's President Hu Jintao (C) delivers a speech at the BRICS summit in Sanya, China, Apr. 14, 2011. A statement adopted by the 5 BRICS states offered strong backing to reform the international financial order.

AP Photo

Analysis & Opinions - The Wall Street Journal

Another Overhyped Challenge to U.S. Power

| July 20, 2011

"In political terms, China, India and Russia are competitors for power in Asia. Russia worries about China's proximity and influence in Siberia, and India is worried about Chinese encroachment into the Indian Ocean as well as their Himalayan border disputes. As a challenge to the United States, BRICS is unlikely to become a serious alliance or even a political organization of like-minded states."

Book - W.W. Norton & Company

God's Century: Resurgent Religion and Global Politics

    Authors:
  • Daniel Philpott
  • Timothy Samuel Shah
| March 2011

Is religion a force for good or evil in world politics? How much influence does it have? Despite predictions of its decline, religion has resurged in political influence across the globe, helped by the very forces that were supposed to bury it: democracy, globalization, and technology. And despite recent claims that religion is exclusively irrational and violent, its political influence is in fact diverse, sometimes promoting civil war and terrorism but at other times fostering democracy, reconciliation, and peace. Looking across the globe, the authors explain what generates these radically divergent behaviors.

Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

The Security Curve and the Structure of International Politics: A Neorealist Synthesis

    Author:
  • Davide Fiammenghi
| Spring 2011

Realist scholars have long debated the question of how much power states need to feel secure. Offensive realists claim that states should constantly seek to increase their power. Defensive realists argue that accumulating too much power can be self-defeating. Proponents of hegemonic stability theory contend that the accumulation of capabilities in one state can exert a stabilizing effect on the system. The three schools describe different points along the power con­tinuum. When a state is weak, accumulating power increases its security. This is approximately the situation described by offensive realists. A state that con­tinues to accumulate capabilities will eventually triggers a balancing reaction that puts its security at risk. This scenario accords with defensive realist as­sumptions. Finally, when the state becomes too powerful to balance, its oppo­nents bandwagon with it, and the state’s security begins to increase again. This is the situation described by hegemonic stability theory. These three stages delineate a modified parabolic relationship between power and secu­rity. As a state moves along the power continuum, its security increases up to a point, then decreases, and finally increases again. This modified parabolic re­lationship allows scholars to synthesize previous realist theories into a single framework.

A U.S. dollar on a renminbi (RMB) banknote is seen through a magnifier in Fuyang, China, 14 Oct. 2010. The value of the RMB hit new high against U.S. dollar as the central parity rate of the RMB was set at 6.6582 per U.S. dollar.

AP Photo

Report - Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments

Understanding America's Contested Primacy

| 2010

"A rigorous assessment should consider the strengths and weaknesses of the United States' putative competitors on the global scene as well as the enduring strengths and sources of resilience that have enabled America to extend its primacy and maintain a stabilizing, global hegemonic role against all expectations. There is a need for a framework to inform how US policymakers might think about the problem of developing strategies and policies to extend that role yet again, since it is at least an arguable proposition that rather than a multipolar world, the global system, after the current Great Recession passes, will continue to be unipolar but with some additional challenges for US leadership."

Book - MIT Press Quarterly Journal: International Security

Going Nuclear: Nuclear Proliferation and International Security in the 21st Century

The spread of nuclear weapons is one of the most significant challenges to global security in the twenty-first century. Limiting the proliferation of nuclear weapons and materials may be the key to preventing a nuclear war or a catastrophic act of nuclear terrorism. Going Nuclear offers conceptual, historical, and analytical perspectives on current problems in controlling nuclear proliferation. It includes essays that examine why countries seek nuclear weapons as well as studies of the nuclear programs of India, Pakistan, and South Africa.

Book Chapter - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Preface to Going Nuclear

| January 2010

"Concern over nuclear proliferation is likely to increase in the coming years. Many observers believe that the spread of nuclear weapons to one or two more states will trigger a wave of new nuclear states. More states may turn to nuclear power to meet their energy needs as other sources of energy become more costly or undesirable because they emit carbon that contributes to global climate change. As more nuclear reactors are built, the world's stock of nuclear expertise and fissionable materials is likely to grow."

Magazine Article - The American Interest

Size Matters

| July-August 2008

"As the American political system hurtles toward its quadrennial encounter with the oracle of democracy, it is worth our while to take stock of the country's place in a world beset by bewilderingly rapid change. (Heaven knows none of the candidates will bother to do this.) I want to suggest that an old yet generally neglected subject remains particularly relevant: the relationship between the size of political units and the effective scale of systems of economic production and exchange. Another way to describe this relationship is by recourse to the hoary scholarly phrase "political economy", a term of art that has unfortunately gone out of style...."