Politics and Strategy

Article

Nuclear Test, Political Fallout, and Domestic Turmoil

Authors: Scott A. Snyder and See-won Byun
Comparative Connections

South Korea’s domestic political vacuum following the impeachment of Park Geun-hye on December 9 overshadows prospects for renewing China-ROK relations in the year ahead. While the current cycle of DPRK provocations and international sanctions has drawn attention to vital Chinese interests in ensuring stability on the peninsula, Beijing’s deteriorating bilateral relationships with the two Koreas and the United States impede immediate regional efforts to break this cycle.

See more in United States; Asia and Pacific; Regional Security; Diplomacy and Statecraft

Article

Assessing U.S.-Asia Relations in a Time of Transition

Author: Sheila A. Smith
Asia Policy

“Although Abe’s quick reach out to Trump in the wake of an election has eased some of the anxiety about the future of the alliance under new U.S. leadership, the larger uncertainty about how the new president will shake up U.S. policy toward Asia continues to shape Japanese attitudes on the transition,” writes CFR Senior Fellow Sheila Smith.

See more in United States; Asia and Pacific; Presidents and Chiefs of State; Diplomacy and Statecraft

Article

Why Argentina’s Macri Could Have a Rockier Year in 2017

Author: Shannon K. O'Neil
Fortune.com

Argentine President Mauricio Macri and his team can take a bow for their first year in office. Despite Macri’s outsider status and his party’s limited influence in the Congress, he in short order took on the country’s biggest economic distortions—unifying the exchange rate, resolving the fight with international creditors, cutting energy subsidies, reestablishing credible statistics, and eliminating a whole host of tariffs, quotas, and export licenses.

See more in Argentina; Presidents and Chiefs of State; Economics

Article

Middle East Derangement Syndrome: Egypt, Turkey, and Israel Have All Fallen Prey to Delusions About Trump

Author: Steven A. Cook
salon.com

The belief among Egyptian, Turkish, Israeli, Saudi, and Emirati officials that the Donald J. Trump administration will demonstrate better “American leadership” in the Middle East is misguided, argues CFR’s Steven A. Cook. The lack of a coherent foreign policy means that Middle Eastern leaders will more likely than not be disappointed.

See more in Middle East and North Africa; United States; Presidents and Chiefs of State; Diplomacy and Statecraft

Article

The National Security Hole at the Heart of the Trump Transition

Author: Max Boot
ForeignPolicy.com

Thousands of key policymakers — from State to the Department of Defense — still need to be appointed to new positions. But nothing’s happening. Days before Trump steps into office, he has failed to announce enough capable replacements for the 4,000 political appointments that any president must make.

 

See more in United States; Presidents and Chiefs of State; Defense and Security

Article

Trump Says Europe Is in Trouble. He Has a Point.

Author: Sebastian Mallaby
The Washington Post

Germany’s foreign minister reports “astonishment and agitation.” The French president protests indignantly about unsolicited “outside advice .” Even Secretary of State John F. Kerry sees behavior that is “inappropriate.” President-elect Donald Trump’s weekend interview, in which he casually predicted the breakup of the European Union, has certainly attracted attention.

See more in Europe; Politics and Strategy; Economics

News Release

CFR President Richard Haass Explains In New Book How We Arrived at "A World in Disarray" and What to Do About It

Author: Richard N. Haass

“These are no ordinary times. It will not be business as usual in a world of disarray; as a result, it cannot be foreign policy as usual,” writes Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), in his latest book, A World in Disarray: American Foreign Policy and the Crisis of the Old Order—a timely examination of a world increasingly defined by disorder. In three parts, the book contemplates the history of world order from the rise of the modern state system to the end of the Cold War; accounts for the momentous shifts in the last quarter century to shed light on the current state of affairs, and outlines specific steps to tackle the many challenges ahead.

See more in Global; Politics and Strategy

Article

Three Hard Questions for Rex Tillerson About Russia Sanctions

Author: Stephen Sestanovich
Wall Street Journal

When Rex Tillerson, Exxon Mobil Corp.’s longtime chief executive and now Donald Trump’s choice to be secretary of state, appears before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, he will get a lot of questions about his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin. If senators want a better conversation with Mr. Tillerson, they should get him to acknowledge—or dispute—the basic facts of Russian-American relations. Stephen Sestanovich presents three questions aimed at getting Tillerson to admit how much sanctions have accomplished. 

See more in Russian Federation; Sanctions; Politics and Strategy

Article

A Conservative’s Prescriptive Policy Checklist: U.S. Foreign Policies in the Next Four Years to Shape a New World Order

Author: Robert D. Blackwill
Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs John F. Kennedy School of Government Harvard University

In a world full of danger and uncertainty, Ambassador Robert D. Blackwill lays out a comprehensive plan for U.S. foreign policy that would defend the vital interests of the United States.

See more in United States; Global; Grand Strategy