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  • Author: Paul Saunders
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: America’s relationship with Russia was among the most controversial foreignpolicy issues of the 2016 presidential campaign, and has remained so in the Trump administration’s initial weeks. Much of the controversy has been strictly political, focused primarily on exploiting anger and suspicion toward Moscow as a weapon during the election campaign and, more recently, in confirmation hearings for President Donald Trump’s key foreign-policy and national-security nominees. That said, public discussion before and after the November election has also exposed sharp differences over U.S. policy toward Russia and the assessments of U.S. and Russian interests, objectives and values that shape Washington’s choices. This volume seeks to contribute to that debate by exploring U.S. options in pursuing President Trump’s stated intent to engage with Moscow
  • Topic: International Relations, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Japan, America
  • Author: Keith B. Alexander, Emily Goldman, Michael Warner
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: PRESIDENT BARACK Obama has identified cybersecurity threats as among the most serious challenges facing our nation. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel noted in April that cyberattacks "have grown into a defining security challenge." And former secretary of defense Leon Panetta told an audience in 2012 that distributed denial-of-service attacks have already hit U.S. financial institutions. Describing this as "a pre-9/11 moment," he explained that "the threat we face is already here." The president and two defense secretaries have thus acknowledged publicly that we as a society are extraordinarily vulnerable. We rely on highly interdependent networks that are insecure, sensitive to interruption and lacking in resiliency. Our nation's government, military, scientific, commercial and entertainment sectors all operate on the same networks as our adversaries. America is continually under siege in cyberspace, and the volume, complexity and potential impact of these assaults are steadily increasing.
  • Topic: Security, Development, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: William W. Chip
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: AMERICA'S CHANGING demographics, long a delicate topic, have become an increasingly prominent part of national political debate. The subject's prominence was assured when President Barack Obama won reelection with less than 40 percent of the white vote in 2012. It quickly became conventional wisdom that Mitt Romney had antagonized Hispanic voters by proposing that illegal aliens engage in "self-deportation" and that the Republican Party was committing political suicide by catering to a shrinking white voter base. Leading Republican strategists such as Karl Rove urged the GOP to change course. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Rove announced: "If the GOP leaves nonwhite voters to the Democrats, then its margins in safe congressional districts and red states will dwindle-not overnight, but over years and decades." Rove pointed to a Georgia county where a 339 percent increase in the Hispanic population was accompanied by a drop in the Republican share of the presidential vote-from 66.4 percent in 2000 to 51.2 percent in 2012.
  • Topic: Immigration, Law
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Georgia
  • Author: Christopher Whalen
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: PRESIDENT OBAMA and Congress continue to wrestle with competing ideas to fix America's housing crisis, ranging from abolishing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to introducing new regulations for repairing the rickety mortgage-financing system years after it crashed. To understand the enduring nature of today's housing-system mess, it is not really necessary to do much more than to look backward. To look, that is, at the careers of two former prominent politicians, each of whom has played an integral role in American finance in recent decades.
  • Topic: Government, Reform
  • Political Geography: United States, New York, America
  • Author: James Joyner
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: Andrew J. Bacevich, Breach of Trust: How Americans Failed Their Soldiers and Their Country [5] (New York: Metropolitan Books, 2013), 256 pp., $26.00. FOLLOWING HIS graduation from West Point, Andrew J. Bacevich had a distinguished career as an army officer, retiring as a colonel and serving in both Vietnam and the Gulf War. He has since carved out a second career as an iconoclastic scholar preaching the evils of perpetual war. In numerous essays and books, Bacevich, who teaches international relations at Boston University, has ventilated his contempt and despair for America's penchant for intervention abroad, directing his ire at both the liberal hawks and neoconservatives. Throughout, his stands have been rooted in a cultural conservatism that sees America as having strayed badly from its republican origins to succumb to the imperial temptation.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Vietnam, England
  • Author: Amity Shlaes
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: A. Scott Berg, Wilson [5] (New York: Putnam, 2013), 832 pp., $40.00. WHICH PREVIOUS president does President Barack Obama resemble most? Historians have likened the forty-fourth president to the thirty-second, Franklin Roosevelt. Obama, after all, chose to open his first term with a progressive campaign that explicitly evoked FDR's progressive Hundred Days. But Roosevelt functioned in a more political and opportunistic fashion than does Obama.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: James Clad
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: IN LATE April 2003, I rode in an open car down Baghdad's wide-open airport highway. U.S. Army and Marine units had seized the city just two weeks before, at the end of a short invasion. I had come to Iraq for a few months, detailed to the White House from another agency, and I was heading that morning to Basra, the southern city occupied by the British Army. At the airport, I climbed into a C-130, an old model of the transport workhorse with just a few tiny windows. We were heading for a first official visit to the British zone, traveling with the retired U.S. Army general Jay Garner, the three-star commanding the occupation authority called the Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance (ORHA). When taking the job, Garner expected that his ad hoc occupation entity, and its anodyne acronym, would disappear in three months or less, leaving the Iraqis to rule themselves. It was not to be. As a dazzling dawn broke over Mesopotamia, Garner already had become the invasion's first political casualty, the terms of his engagement rewritten back in Washington, changed from “rapid departure” to “indefinite stay.” From my marginal place, I saw Garner working hard at what needed doing, predicated on our need to get out of Iraq almost as quickly as we had arrived.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, America, Mesopotamia
  • Author: Jakub Grygiel
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: THE EUROPEAN Union's unfolding crisis tends to be seen as purely economic in nature and consequence. The EU is a common market, with a common currency adopted by most of its members and with fiscal problems of one kind or another facing almost all of its capitals. Most analyses of the euro crisis focus, therefore, on the economic and financial impact of whatever “euro exit” may occur or of a European fiscal centralization. In the worst case, they project a full-fledged breakup of the common currency and perhaps even the EU itself. Not much can be added to this sea of analysis except a pinch of skepticism: nobody really knows the full economic impact, positive or negative, of such potential developments. In fact, not even European leaders seem to have a clear idea of how to mitigate the economic and political morass of the Continent. While it is certain that the EU of the future will be different, it isn't clear just how. If we look at the current situation of the EU from a security perspective, however, it becomes much more difficult to foresee any long-term positive outcome. That's because the euro troubles of today will have powerful negative effects on the security of the region, resulting in challenges that will preoccupy Europeans as well as Americans in the years to come.
  • Topic: Security, Economics
  • Political Geography: America, Europe
  • Author: Jennifer Lind
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: THE UNITED States has security partnerships with numerous countries whose people detest America. The United States and Pakistan wrangled for seven months over a U.S. apology for the NATO air strikes that killed twenty-four Pakistani soldiers in 2011. The accompanying protests that roiled Islamabad, Karachi and other cities are a staple of the two countries' fraught relationship. Similarly, American relations with Afghanistan repeatedly descended into turmoil last year as Afghans expressed outrage at Koran burnings by U.S. personnel through riots and killings. “Green on blue” attacks—Afghan killings of U.S. soldiers—plague the alliance. In many Islamic countries, polls reflect little warmth toward Americans. Washington's strategy of aligning with governments, rather than peoples, blew up in Egypt and could blow up in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Yemen. America's alliances in the Middle East and Persian Gulf are fraught with distrust, dislike and frequent crisis. Is there any hope for them? Turns out, there is. Fifty years ago, a different alliance was rocked by crisis and heading toward demise. Like many contemporary U.S. alliances, it had been created as a marriage of convenience between Washington and a narrow segment of elites, and it was viewed with distrust by the peoples of both countries. Yet a half century later, that pairing is one of the strongest security partnerships in the world—the alliance between the United States and Japan.
  • Topic: Security, Islam
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, United States, Japan, America, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: John M. Broder
  • Publication Date: 08-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The National Interest
  • Institution: Center for the National Interest
  • Abstract: Michael Levi, The Power Surge: Energy, Opportunity, and the Battle for America's Future (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013), 272 pp., $27.95. AROUND THE corner on K Street, one of the half dozen designer salad places in my part of downtown Washington recently closed after about a year in business. "Coming soon," the sign in the papered-over window reads, "Dunkin' Donuts." Hurried Washingtonians will soon be able to get their calorie fix for a tenth of the time and money spent. Maybe not so good for them in the long run, but John Maynard Keynes told us what happens in the long run. This, in miniature, is the choice the United States faces on energy and climate change. Fossil fuels are convenient, cheap, plentiful and, in the long run, deadly. Renewable energy-from the sun and the soil, the wind and the waves-is comparatively expensive, hard to produce and healthy. Mankind has chosen the cheap and plentiful path for the past two hundred years, burning coal, oil and gas and spewing the trash into the atmosphere. In May, the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere surpassed four hundred parts per million, the highest level in three million years. The planet teeters on the cusp of calamity. Science says it's time to switch to salads.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Washington