For the first time in decades, the United Nations is undergoing a transition at exactly the same time as the United States. The term of the outgoing secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, ends on Dec. 31, and his successor, Antonio Guterres, takes over on Jan. 1, 2017. The United States must act soon to preserve our influence in the organization, as Elliott Abrams explains in The Washington Post.
Much of the new U.S. administration’s foreign policy is a mystery, but expect broad policy continuity in U.S. relations with India while geopolitical and geoeconomic questions pull the two countries in new directions.
“The U.S.-Israel relationship is in trouble,” warn Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellows Robert D. Blackwill and Philip H. Gordon in a new Council Special Report, Repairing the U.S.-Israel Relationship. Significant policy differences over issues in the Middle East, as well as changing demographics and politics within both the United States and Israel, have pushed the two countries apart. Blackwill, a former senior official in the Bush administration, and Gordon, a former senior official in the Obama administration, call for “a deliberate and sustained effort by policymakers and opinion leaders in both countries” to repair the relationship and to avoid divisions “that no one who cares about Israel’s security or America’s values and interests in the Middle East should want.”
The president of the United States has vast power—nearly unlimited in the realm of foreign affairs. He can order U.S. troops into combat. He can bomb any country he wants. He can round up illegal immigrants. He can spy on millions of people. Soon all that power will be in the hands of Donald J. Trump, hardly the most sober and restrained individual ever to occupy the Oval Office. Checks and balances on a president's national security powers have never been more important, writes CFR's Max Boot.
While Donald Trump was getting himself elected president, various factions of the American Left were fighting over just how much to boycott Israel. Elliott Abrams explains their ludicrous debate in The Weekly Standard.
This week, the podcast will air the first episode of The President's Inbox. CFR's James M. Lindsay, Robert McMahon, and Elizabeth N. Saunders examine President-Elect Donald Trump's two most immediate priorities: assembling a new administration and deciding how to start his presidency.
CFR's James M. Lindsay, Robert McMahon, and Elizabeth N. Saunders examine President-Elect Donald Trump's two most immediate priorities: assembling a new administration and deciding how to start his presidency.
In addressing the question of how America was so wrong in predicting the 2016 presidential election, Gayle Lemmon notes that “the problem lies not just in the geography, but in the mindset of journalists.” A journalist by training, Lemmon speaks of the elite echo chamber in which journalists often operate and urges writers to speak with, understand, and respect the broader American public.
Donald Trump is the president-elect of the United States. Among many other things, this means he will take charge of U.S. foreign policy. Trump will not manage foreign policy alone, but presidents have a lot of power nonetheless. Here are three things we know about leaders, advisers and foreign policy.
In 1777, when Britain received words of the drubbing its forces had suffered at Saratoga to the American rebels, a friend of Adam Smith’s exclaimed that “the nation was ruined.” The wise philosopher calmly replied: “There is a great deal of ruin in a nation.” That proposition is about to be put to the test by President-elect Donald Trump. We must now hope that Trump can be reined in from the rhetoric of his campaign.
Speaker: Joshua B. Bolten Speaker: William M. Daley Speaker: Thomas F. "Mack" McLarty III Presider: Amy S. Davidson
Former White House chiefs of staff discuss the challenges facing the incoming administration as it enters the White House, as well lessons learned from the three previous U.S. presidential transitions.