Presidents and Chiefs of State

Op-Ed

An Earful for Vladimir Putin in Latest ‘Direct Line’ Call-In Show

Author: Stephen Sestanovich
Wall Street Journal

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.

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Article

Why Credibility Matters

Author: Stephen Sestanovich
The Atlantic

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.

 

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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

Nigeria: Buhari’s 2016 Budget Continues Use of Secretive ‘Security Votes’

Author: Matthew T. Page
African Arguments

Under President Muhammadu Buhari, the fight against corruption in Nigeria has unquestionably turned a corner. Shortly after taking office in May, he vowed to “plug revenue leakages”, made sweeping changes in the notoriously corrupt Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), and took steps to tighten control over public spending.

 

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Article

A Modestly Humbled Obama

Author: Max Boot
Commentary

In the State of the Union, President Obama offered a welcome rebuke to the pessimism and Muslim-bashing of so many Republican candidates. But in his discussion of foreign policy he used tired rhetorical tricks to defend his record on Iran, Syria, and ISIS, and to attack strawman arguments on nation-building and military interventions.

 

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