Op-Eds

Published opinions and arguments by CFR fellows and experts.

What the 2014 Oil Crash Means

Author: Michael A. Levi
Politico Magazine

As oil prices continue to drop, Michael Levi argues that the benefit to American consumers will outweigh any damage to the U.S. economy. However, how you view this plunge in oil prices "depends a lot on where you live and what work you do."

See more in Global; Oil; Financial Markets

Five Myths About Ebola

Author: Laurie Garrett
Washingtonpost.com

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has reportedly claimed close to 4,000 lives, and World Health Organization officials believe the true death toll could be far higher. An international response — including U.S. military personnel, as well as assistance from several other countries and nongovernmental organizations — has begun, yet global concern about the virus is spreading. How worried should we be? What are the risks? In the Washington Post, Laurie Garrett debunks five common myths about the current Ebola outbreak.

See more in Global; Public Health Threats and Pandemics

Wall Street, Washington, and Brazil

Author: Julia E. Sweig
Folha de Sao Paulo

Following the first round elimination of "change candidate" Marina Silva in Brazil's presidential election, Julia Sweig reflects in her column on the run-off between establishment candidates Dilma Rousseff and Aecio Neves and their potential to implement much-needed reforms throughout the country.

See more in Brazil; Elections

Fiddling While Kobani Burns

Author: Steven A. Cook
ForeignPolicy.com

Despite the recent parliamentary approval authorizing cross-border operations into Syria and Iraq, and even at the risk of jeopardizing peace talks with the Kurds as the city of Kobani remains under siege, Turkey is not fully committed to confronting ISIS militants head-on, says CFR's Steven A. Cook.

See more in Turkey; Syria; Military Operations; Defense Strategy

Obama’s Own JV Team

Author: Max Boot
Weekly Standard

Gates, Panetta, Petraeus, Clinton, Mullen and Jones have given way to Biden, Hagel, Kerry, Rice and Brennan. In response to criticism of American foreign policy from former Defense Secretaries Gates and Panetta, Max Boot explores the causes and implications of the post-Bin Laden shake-up in Obama's foreign policy team.

See more in United States; Politics and Strategy

Combating Ebola: What Can Africa Learn From China?

Author: Yanzhong Huang
China-US Focus

Yanzhong Huang notes the limited public health infrastructure in certain West African countries that are currently battling the spread of Ebola, which is a similar phenomenon to that which occurred in China during the 2003 SARS outbreak. Dr. Huang stresses the importance of foreign aid, particularly Chinese funds, to slow the spread of Ebola but points out that dependence on foreign aid is ultimately an unsustainable public health strategy.

See more in Africa (sub-Saharan); Public Health Threats and Pandemics

The Shape- Shifting Coalition

Author: Micah Zenko
ForeignPolicy.com

The U.S.-led coalition to combat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) includes fifty-five states, nine of which have taken part in military operations or stated their willingness to do so. However, over time, CPA's Micah Zenko argues, these commitments will diminish as the mission shifts, resources dwindle, and national support decreases, just as was the case in the Iraq War and 2011 intervention in Libya.

See more in Syria; Iraq; Counterterrorism; Military Operations

Hollow Words and an Exponential Horror

Author: Laurie Garrett
Foreign Policy

Obama called the world to action against Ebola, but most countries are only paying lip service to the coming catastrophe. Laurie Garrett asks two questions about this newly announced war on Ebola in this article for ForeignPolicy.com: Will personnel and resources reach West Africa rapidly enough to dam the viral flow, and will the nations of the world learn from this disaster to build institutions and long-term targets that prevent pandemics in the future?

See more in Africa (sub-Saharan); Public Health Threats and Pandemics