Diplomacy and Statecraft

Primary Sources

Remarks by U.S. President Obama and Cuban President Castro in a Joint Press Conference

President Barack Obama traveled to Cuba March 20-22, 2016, the first time a sitting U.S. president has traveled to Cuba since 1928. The trip is part of the normalization of relations between the United States and Cuba that began in December 2014. President Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro held a joint press conference and discussed the opening of a U.S. embassy in Cuba, trade relations, and human rights.

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Article

Is Washington’s Myanmar Policy the Model for U.S.-Cuba Normalization?

Author: Joshua Kurlantzick
World Politics Review

Over the past year, the Obama administration has rapidly repaired diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Last month, in the latest of many agreements, Washington and Havana signed a deal restoring commercial flights between the two countries for the first time in more than 50 years, just as the White House approved construction of the first U.S. factory in Cuba since the 1960 embargo.

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News Release

CFR Report: China’s Slowing Economy Will Fuel A More Nationalist Foreign Policy

In light of China’s deepening economic slowdown, “China’s foreign policy may well be driven increasingly by the risk of domestic political instability,” write Robert D. Blackwill, Henry A. Kissinger senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), and Kurt M. Campbell, the Asia Group’s chairman and chief executive officer, in a new Council Special Report. “Economic growth and nationalism have for decades been the two founts of legitimacy for the Communist Party, and as the former wanes, [Chinese leader Xi Jinping] will likely rely increasingly on the latter.”

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Op-Ed

Can Taiwan Show Beijing and the World How Disputed Islands Should Be Used for Peace?

Author: Jerome A. Cohen
South China Morning Post

In this op-ed, published following the visit of outgoing Taiwanese president Ma Ying-jeou to Taiping Island in the South China Sea, Cohen outlines how peaceful initiatives could be developed on the island to help address tensions in the South China Sea and other parts of East Asia.

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Op-Ed

Forging a New Check on China

Author: Jennifer M. Harris
U.S. News and World Report

U.S. leaders still haven't quite figured out the right formula for the greatest geopolitical challenge facing the United States this century: managing China's rise. But that may have changed Monday, when President Barack Obama welcomed leaders from the 10 member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations for a two-day summit at Sunnylands in California, the so-called Camp David of the West.

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Article

The Dark Heart of ASEAN

Author: Joshua Kurlantzick
Project Syndicate
Next week, at a summit in California, US President Barack Obama will meet with the leaders of the ten countries of Asia’s most important regional grouping: the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. The event, the first-ever US-ASEAN summit on American soil, is being touted as a sign of America’s growing interest in Southeast Asia. The question is whether the US, by inviting all members of ASEAN, has allowed its interests to overwhelm its principles.

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Book

The Pragmatic Superpower

Authors: Ray Takeyh and Steven Simon

In The Pragmatic Superpower, Ray Takeyh and Steven Simon reframe the legacy of U.S. involvement in the Arab world from 1945 to 1991 and shed new light on the makings of the contemporary Middle East. Cutting against conventional wisdom, the authors argue that, when an inexperienced Washington entered the turbulent world of Middle Eastern politics, it succeeded through hardheaded pragmatism—and secured its place as a global superpower.

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Op-Ed

David Cameron’s Tea Party Problem

Author: Sebastian Mallaby
Washington Post

The United States is not the only place possessed by populism, and this week the results from Iowa coincided with a new lurch toward the gutter in formerly sane Britain. The country once governed by Bill Clinton-imitating centrists is now beset by its own version of Trump-Cruzery: a xenophobic nativism that would divorce Britain from Europe in defiance of ordinary good sense.

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Article

Propitiating Iran

Authors: Ray Takeyh and Reuel Marc Gerecht
Weekly Standard

The recent hostages-for-criminals exchange with Iran is the latest example of the Obama administration’s willingness to concede American red lines, argues CFR’s Ray Takeyh with Reuel Marc Gerecht of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. A permissive and passive diplomatic doctrine only serves to weaken American values and strengthen the resolve of its enemies.

 

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