Far from decisive, Trump’s decision to fire cruise missiles against a single air base in Syria was reminiscent of the kind of low-risk cruise missile attacks that Republicans have mocked in the past for their symbolic, ineffectual nature. While it is a good thing Trump did act, it is hard to know what larger lessons about U.S. policy in the world or in Syria itself one can draw from this decision. The Trump doctrine appears to be: The United States reserves the right to use force whenever the president is upset by something he sees on TV.
Speaker: Kimberly Marten Speaker: Alexander R. Vershbow Presider: Micah Zenko
Tensions between Russia and NATO are high, making escalatory rhetoric, dangerous military encounters, and conflict frighteningly real. Please join us for a discussion on a new approach to U.S. policy toward Russia, with speakers Kimberly Marten, Ann Whitney Olin professor of political science at Barnard College, and Ambassador Alexander R. Vershbow, distinguished fellow at the Atlantic Council.
Authors: Reuel Gerecht and Ray Takeyh Washington Post
The United States can cripple the Iranian regime if it doesn’t compromise the battle on the ground for fear of compromising arms control, argue Reuel Gerecht and CFR’s Ray Takeyh. America should fight Iran’s proxy militias in the regions, support popular movements against the Islamic Republic, and make human rights a priority for its Iran policy.
Ahead of the Donald Trump-Xi Jinping summit this week at Mar-a-Lago, Taiwan is understandably anxious. Trump’s ascendance to the American presidency has injected uncertainty into the U.S. approach to China and Taiwan — an element of foreign policy that is traditionally carefully calibrated to avoid upsetting the precarious cross-strait arrangement.
The United States and its allies have a rare second chance to punish Syria for attacking civilians with chemical weapons or else risk the further weakening of global norms against the use of weapons of mass destruction, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass.
The United States has just launched a missile attack against Syrian air bases, apparently in response to the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians. (The attack apparently was launched in the middle of President Trump's dinner with Chinese President Xi, and is not likely to make the Chinese very happy.)
Ray Takeyh testified before the Subcommittee on National Security of the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government and gave his assessment of the stability of the Islamic Republic and what the United States can should do to counter Iran’s influence in the region and weaken the regime.
Speaker: Amina J. Mohammed Presider: Rachel B. Vogelstein
Leading international institutions and private sector corporations have concluded that women’s economic participation is critical to global growth and prosperity. However, today nearly 90 percent of nations around the world still have laws on the books that impede women’s work, thereby undermining economic development. H.E. Amina J. Mohammed discusses the legal barriers that women face and offers recommendations to level the economic playing field for women in order to grow economies worldwide. This meeting is part of a new high-level series, in collaboration with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to explore the economic effects of inequality under the law.
The U.S.-China relationship is one issue on which President Trump’s instincts are at least partly right — for China, let’s be honest, does not always play fair in international economic relations. It has limited respect for intellectual property; it subsidizes strategic industries with bargain loans and export credits; it uses government power over procurement to favor domestic firms.
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 »