Issues

Primary Sources

U.S. Department of Justice Memo: Applicability of Federal Criminal Laws and the Constitution to Contemplated Lethal Operations Against Shaykh Anwar al-Aulaqi

This U.S. Court of Appeal's Second Circuit ruled that this redacted version of a 2010 Justice Department memo, which "signed off on the effort to target Anwar Al-Awlaki, an American citizen deemed a terrorist, for killing without a trial," had to be released, in response to FOIA requests filed by the New York Times and the American Civil Liberties Union.

See more in United States; Organization of Government; Terrorism and the Law

News Release

Michael Levi Named Director of Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies

The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) is pleased to announce that Michael A. Levi, David M. Rubenstein senior fellow for energy and the environment and director of the program on Energy Security and Climate Change, has been named director of the Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies (CGS). Founded in 2000, the CGS is one of the premier venues for informed analysis on the global economy and foreign policy—from international economic cooperation to the uses of economic statecraft, national security consequences of economic developments, and domestic U.S. economy.

See more in Global; Economics

Transcript

Transcript: Foreign Affairs Media Call on Iraq and ISIS

Speakers: Steven Simon and Barak Mendelsohn
Presider: Gideon Rose

Steven Simon, former senior director for Middle Eastern and North African affairs at the National Security Council, and Barak Mendelsohn, associate professor of political science at Haverford College discuss the fight between the Iraqi government and the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).

See more in Iraq; Terrorism

Op-Ed

The Man Who Broke the Middle East

Author: Elliott Abrams
Politico

The Middle East that Obama inherited in 2009 was largely at peace, for the surge in Iraq had beaten down the al Qaeda-linked groups. U.S. relations with traditional allies in the Gulf, Jordan, Israel and Egypt were very good. Iran was contained, its Revolutionary Guard forces at home. Today, terrorism has metastasized in Syria and Iraq, Jordan is at risk, the humanitarian toll is staggering, terrorist groups are growing fast and relations with U.S. allies are strained.

See more in Middle East and North Africa; Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

Op-Ed

In Iraq, Obama Has Two Terrible Choices

Author: Meghan L. O'Sullivan
Politico

In his efforts to save Iraq, President Obama is right to demand more power-sharing and other political reforms from Iraqi leaders before the United States offers more military assistance. But Obama should not think he can hold off offering such assistance until he secures those reforms—not if he wants to prevent the bloody breakup of the country and a wider regional war.

See more in Iraq; United States; Defense Strategy

Audio

Women and Girls in the Afghanistan Transition

Following the release of her report on the status of women in Afghanistan, Catherine Powell moderates a discussion with Open Society Foundations' Rachel Reid and the U.S. Department of Defense's David Sedney on the role the United States can play in extending the progress of Afghan in women in education, the economy, health care, and beyond.

See more in Afghanistan; Women

Primary Sources

Details of Exchanges Between Japan and South Korea Regarding the Comfort Women Issue

From 1991 to 1992, the Japanese government conducted research about the trafficking of sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. The study established the Asian Women's Fund, which worked in Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, and Indonesia to redress victims. On June 20, 2014, more details were released about information exchanged between Japan and South Korea during the study and about Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono's statement which acknowledged the involvement of the Japanese military in establishing "comfort stations."

See more in Japan; South Korea; Human Trafficking; Women

Council Special Report No. 69

Limiting Armed Drone Proliferation

Authors: Micah Zenko and Sarah Kreps

In this Council Special Report, Senior Fellow Micah Zenko and Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow Sarah Kreps argue that it is essential to begin working now to expand and establish rules and norms governing armed drones. By doing so, they predict, the United States will create standards of behavior that other countries will be more likely to follow.

See more in Global; Drones; Arms Control, Disarmament, and Nonproliferation

Op-Ed

Rebooting China

Author: A. Michael Spence
Project Syndicate

A. Michael Spence urges China's leaders to be steady-handed and sensible in their foreign policy and domestic reform agendas so as to maintain the kind of economic stability necessary for complex structural changes to work their way through the Chinese economy with minimal disruption.

See more in China; Financial Markets; Economic Development