"The increasingly real threat of economic turmoil is already chipping away at Putin's power with more effectiveness than any protest movement. There is bound to be a vacuum when the forces of economics prevail. But a movement that is pulled in myriad different directions, that cannot decide on an identity, and yet lacks variety in its leaders cannot fill the void. By crushing the opposition, Putin has all but ensured that, once again, Russia's history will repeat itself, and only the wrong people will be there to step in—the ultra-nationalists, childlike faddists, and dangerous purists."
"Many international development organizations hold that persistent poverty in the Global South is caused largely by corruption among local public officials. In 2003 these concerns led to the United Nations Convention against Corruption, which asserts that, while corruption exists in all countries, this 'evil phenomenon' is 'most destructive' in the global South, where it is a 'key element in economic underperformance and a major obstacle to poverty alleviation and development.' There's only one problem with this theory: It's just not true."
"Recent attacks, including two in Volgograd, suggest that Islamist terrorists may try to strike across the country and embarrass Moscow during the Olympics, the preparations of which have been beset by allegations of abuses against the local populace. Beyond the immediate risk, they underline the urgent need to achieve a comprehensive political solution to the North Caucasus conflicts before rolling out fully an ambitious tourism project in republics that still have active insurgencies or have been seriously affected by conflict."
Following President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech, Gayle T. Lemmon discusses why the United States needs to strike a balance between using military force and international diplomacy, rather than choosing one over the other.
"How the Sochi Games grew so expensive is a tale of Putin-era Russia in microcosm: a story of ambition, hubris, and greed leading to fabulous extravagance on the shores of the Black Sea. And extravagances, in Russia especially, come at a price."
Broad-based international economic sanctions on Iran have significantly impaired its economy and brought the regime to the negotiating table, but the recently concluded interim nuclear agreement remains controversial among many members of Congress.
Emerging economies have boomed over the past decade, but many have recently seen their currencies come under pressure. With a potential currency crisis looming, CFR's Steven Cook, Marcus Noland of the Petersen Institute for International Economics, and Mitchell Orenstein of Northeastern University take an in-depth look at three emerging market success stories in a conversation with Foreign Affairs editor Gideon Rose.
The annual worldwide threat briefings of the intelligence community began with Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's briefing to the U.S. Senate, during which he discussed the top threats facing the United States in 2014. In his article, Micah Zenko discusses the one thing that will remain shrouded from the American public—exactly who the United States is at war with.
A preview of world events in the coming week from CFR.org: Russia hosts the Sochi Winter Olympic Games; Thailand carries out parliamentary elections; and Ukraine faces intensified antigovernment protests. CFR Distinguished Visiting Fellow and former NYPD commissioner Raymond Kelly joins as a special guest to discuss security for the Olympics.
Lee Fuell, technical director for force modernization & employment at the National Air & Space Intelligence Center, testified on January 30, 2014, at a hearing on China's Military Modernization and its Implications for the United States before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.
The United States doesn't welcome a military takeover in Egypt, but its options are hamstrung by the need for Egypt to be a regional security partner as well as a peace partner for Israel, says Michele Dunne.
Annually, the Director of National Intelligence testifies before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to discuss the current and potential threats to United States' security and priorities for the Department of Defense budget. The assessment usually covers terrorism threats, cyber attacks, counterintelligence, proliferation, mass atrocities, regional and country-by-country threats, and other state and non state intelligence threats such as health threats, water security and transnational crime.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
The author examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to quarantine threats while integrating Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.