Just two days after the terrorist attack at the offices of the French satirical magazineCharlie Hebdo last January, Amedy Coulibaly, a French-born militant who had pledged allegiance to the self-proclaimed Islamic State (also known as ISIS), murdered four Jewish shoppers in a kosher supermarket in eastern Paris.
There has been no shortage of scrutiny of what Russian President Vladimir Putin is up to in Syria and why, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass. Much of the analysis, though, has been narrowly focused on the short term and may be too negative in assessing his actions’ likely long-term consequences.
As a 2009 Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Contingency Planning Memorandum "Crisis Between Ukraine and Russia" argued, a major Ukraine-Russia confrontation has significant implications for the United States. Despite ongoing diplomatic efforts, few aspects of the Minsk II agreement have been implemented and heavy fighting could resume, precipitating an even deeper crisis between Russia and the West.
"The Chinese often point out that in their language the character for crisis and opportunity are one and the same," writes CFR President Richard N. Haass. "But, while it is indeed true that crisis and opportunity often go hand in hand, it is difficult to see much opportunity in Europe’s current circumstances."
On September 28, 2015, the UN Peacekeeping Summit met during the UN General Assembly. U.S. President Barack Obama spoke and announced new presidential guidance to expand U.S. support in UN peacekeeping. The summit also affirmed the recommendations of the High Level Independent Panel on Peace Operations from September 11, 2015, which includes addressing sexual abuse of civilians by peacekeeping personnel.
A wave of Syrian refugees has caught Europe and the United States flat-footed, leaving the European Union scrambling to devise a plan to deal with those arriving on its shores and Americans debating our role in the matter. A humanitarian reaction is natural–but woefully inadequate, because refugees will keep coming as long as the Assad regime continues to brutally repress Syria’s Sunni majority. Only by bringing the conflict to an end will the flow of ever more thousands of refugees stop.
Ukraine faces two severe and immediate challenges: armed pro-Russian separatists in the eastern part of the country and a sharp, nationwide economic deterioration stemming in no small part from that military threat.CFR convened a group of experts to discuss Ukraine’s economic challenges and identify possible ways for outside actors to support Ukrainian policymakers
Speaker: Paul B. Stares Speaker: Paul D. Williams Speaker: David Haeri
The speakers assessed the current challenges facing UN peace operations and also discussed the future contribution of the United States, prior to the summit hosted by the Obama administration in late September on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.
This meeting is made possible by the generous support of Carnegie Corporation of New York and will be on the record.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2016 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 »