The recent coup attempt in Turkey would not have ended democracy in the country, argues CFR’s Steven A. Cook. As President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has undermined whatever democratic progress Turkey has made in the early 2000s, there was no democracy for Turkey to lose.
We know what President Obama thinks of Islamism, but how does he view Communism and the Cold War? Obama’s misunderstanding of Islamism may be matched by his misunderstanding of Communism and of America’s role in the 20th century, as Elliott Abrams explains in National Review.
On January 28, 2009, barely a week into his presidency, Barack Obama met with the U.S. military’s top generals and admirals on their own turf, inside “the tank,” the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s conference room on the second floor of the Pentagon. A senior official recalled the new president as “remarkably confident—composed, relaxed, but also deferential, not trying to act too much the commander in chief.”
Earlier this week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India visited President Obama, marking his second visit to the White House in two years. Like his two immediate predecessors, Obama has made special efforts to expand ties with India.
It’s easy to snicker at Vladimir Putin’s annual televised call-in extravaganza, known as “Direct Line.” The show’s campy, “Dear Leader” deference would hardly be greater if Kim Jong Un were its star. Still, Mr. Putin’s performance is a valuable political barometer. The questions allowed and the answers they generate tell us how the Kremlin views the country’s mind and mood.
President Obama has a clear idea of what unsound foreign policy choices are, which he has real determination to avoid. He has made such understandings and determination the organizing framework of a downsized, less expensive, more risk-averse foreign policy. For better or worse, this is his “doctrine.” It is helping him to clean the policy arena. What it may not do is sustaining the American role in the world that he himself claims to want.
Robert D. Blackwill and Kurt M. Campbell analyze the rise of Chinese President Xi Jinping and call for a new American grand strategy for Asia that "seeks to avoid a U.S.-China confrontation and maintain U.S. primacy in Asia."
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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