The Obama administration's search for a less costly, more "sustainable" foreign policy recalls previous presidents who wound down major wars, according to Stephen Sestanovich, George F. Kennan Senior Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. In Maximalist: America in the World from Truman to Obama, Sestanovich argues that the most challenging phase of retrenchment comes after the United States has extricated itself from a stalemated conflict. Postwar cutbacks in the Pentagon budget usually last longer than the surge that preceded them, but political controversies over the direction of American foreign policy begin much sooner.
French President Francois Hollande visited the United States, from February 10-12, 2014. In Washington, he met with President Barack Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, directors of the IMF and the World Bank, and met with several American CEOs.
Will the Assad regime and Syrian political opposition negotiate a political transition or move to alleviate Syria's humanitarian crisis? This Issue Guide provides background and analysis on the long-awaited Geneva II talks.
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos on January 24, 2014, discussing the United States' global commitments in trade, economic development, foreign relations, and conflict resolution.
Though it's unlikely the Geneva II talks on Syria will yield major breakthroughs, movement is possible on humanitarian aid, cease-fires, and prisoner exchanges, says former ambassador to Syria Edward P. Djerejian.
Daniel S. Markey examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to confront and quarantine immediate threats to regional security while simultaneously attempting to integrate Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.
Not so long ago the idea of a gay person representing the United States in embassies abroad was unimaginable. Oh, how times have changed. Whether by inspiring young U.S. foreign service officers or by promoting human rights through their diplomatic efforts abroad, openly gay U.S. ambassadors are adding a new aspect of diversity to the face of the U.S. diplomatic corps.
Elliott Abrams argues that U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian peace process should focus on pragmatic, achievable goals rather than raising expectations for a comprehensive peace settlement that is not now attainable.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held a press conference with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh on December 16, 2013. They discussed the U.S.-Vietnam Comprehensive Partnership and tensions in the South and East China Seas.
The United States maintains important interests in Afghanistan, even as most U.S. and allied troops are withdrawn in 2014. Seth G. Jones and Keith Crane assess the political, security, and economic challenges facing U.S. policymakers in Afghanistan and evaluate a range of policy options.
James M. Lindsay argues that while Congress has no direct role in the conduct of U.S. diplomacy, it can nonetheless still shape what presidents say to foreign governments or if they say anything at all.
Tensions between the United States and Israel over Iran negotiations have jeopardized peace talks with Palestinians and left Israel vowing to go it alone on security if necessary, says expert Gerald M. Steinberg.
"The diplomatic deals the United States is pursuing to constrain Iran's nuclear program and destroy Syria's chemical weapons are not at odds with Gulf security. On the contrary, they are essential to prevent regimes hostile to Gulf interests from possessing the world's most dangerous weapons."
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
The author examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to quarantine threats while integrating Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.