According to the prevailing wisdom in the West, the Ukraine crisis can be blamed almost entirely on Russian aggression. Russian President Vladimir Putin, the argument goes, annexed Crimea out of a long-standing desire to resuscitate the Soviet empire, and he may eventually go after the rest of Ukraine, as well as other countries in eastern Europe.
Twenty-five years ago this November, an East German Politburo member bungled the announcement of what were meant to be limited changes to travel regulations, thereby inspiring crowds to storm the border dividing East and West Berlin.
Authors: Eric Edelman, Dennis Ross, and Ray Takeyh The Washington Post
With the extension on the nuclear deal with Iran, Western powers would do well to reconfigure their assumptions on how to pressure Iran into a deal, writes CFR’s Ray Takeyh. Instead of economic or diplomatic punitive measures, the United States needs a comprehensive and coercive strategy that would mend fences between the White House and Congress on the foreign policy front, strengthen alliances in the Middle East, and isolate Iran from its partners.
Sheila Smith examines how domestic pressure in Japan, the release of U.S. citizens detained by North Korea, and a new UN resolution referring North Korean leaders to the International Criminal Court on charges of crimes against humanity could potentially shape Tokyo’s ongoing efforts to learn the fates of Japanese citizens abducted by Pyongyang decades ago.
Matthew Waxman reflects on the international legality of the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ), declared by China one year ago. Importantly, this zone includes a large area of the East China Sea, including islands the legal possession of which China disputes with Japan. Waxman discusses the somewhat ambiguous and developing legal field surrounding ADIZs in this particular context and beyond.
G20 leaders met in Queensland November 15 and 16, 2014. Leaders agreed to aim for a two percent increase in the G20 GDP, to fund an infrastructure knowledge sharing network, to address climate change with energy efficiency goals, and to combat tax evasion and corruption.
China’s unexpectedly easy cooperation with the U.S. on climate change, security and trade says a lot about the interests at the very top: Barack Obama’s legacy and Xi Jinping’s ambitions, says Elizabeth Economy.
The Berlin Wall's collapse a quarter of a century ago sparked the transformation of institutions, governments, and economies across Europe. This feature looks back at some of the most significant consequences and developments.
In Project Syndicate, RichardHaass writes: "Historical eras are difficult to recognize before they end. The Renaissance became the Renaissance only in retrospect; the same can be said for the Dark Ages that preceded it and any number of other eras. The reason is simple: It is impossible to know if some promising or troubling development stands alone or represents the start of a lasting trend."
Samir Saran explains India's position in advance of the 2014 ITU conference, arguing that India believes that the ITU has a role to play in Internet governance, although Delhi does not oppose a multistakeholder approach.
Christian Schaller and Johannes Thimm analyze Germany's policy priorities at the ITU conference in Busan, South Korea, arguing that Germany will go to Busan opposed to the expansion of the ITU mandate, but in search of ways to increase the ITU's technical capabilities to broaden access.
The interactive Global Governance Monitor tracks, maps, and evaluates multilateral efforts to address today's global challenges.
CFR Experts Guide
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.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Koblentz argues that the United States should work with other nuclear-armed states to manage threats to nuclear stability in the near term and establish processes for multilateral arms control efforts over the longer term.
The authors argue that it is essential to begin working now to expand and establish rules and norms governing armed drones, thereby creating standards of behavior that other countries will be more likely to follow.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2014 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »