The French newspaper Le Monde interviewed Afghan President Hamid Karzai on December 10, 2013. He discussed the U.S.-Afghan Bilateral Security Agreement about U.S. military assistance in Afghanistan after 2014 and his conditions for signing it.
On December 10, 2013, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation approved the "Prohibitions and Restrictions on Proprietary Trading and Certain Interests in, and Relationships With, Hedge Funds and Private Equity Funds," part of the Dodd-Frank Act commonly known as the Volcker Rule.
Benn Steil's latest op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, co-authored with Dinah Walker, shows that developing countries running large current account deficits have seen their economies whipsawed by volatile capital flows triggered by unconventional monetary policy at the Fed and elsewhere in the developed world. The clear lesson for such countries is that they should pursue policies which constitute "currency manipulation" in Washington, thereby setting the stage for rising global trade tensions.
Several U.S. technology companies, Google, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo, LinkedIn, and AOL, published an open letter to the government in newspapers on December 9, 2013. The letter requests an end bulk collection of user data, including email, address books, and video chats, and lists accountability and transparency principles the companies support.
It has been a generation since our country last had a robust conversation about combatting poverty. Now is the time to reinvigorate that conversation, not cut needed benefits, write Robert E. Rubin, Roger C. Altman, and Melissa Kearney.
Vice President Joe Biden met with Chinese President Xi Jinping on December 4, 2013, during the vice president's trip to Asia. The vice president also spoke to the American Chamber of Commerce in Beijing and the U.S.-China Business Council on December 5, 2013.
The scorecard infographic and accompanying progress report, "Trading Up: U.S. Trade and Investment Policy," analyzes the overall health of the U.S. economy by focusing on shifts in global trade and foreign direct investment in the United States.
The Obama administration has embraced the most ambitious agenda on trade and investment liberalization in the past two decades, but more must be done to remove trade barriers in services, which is where the United States is most competitive, according to Ted Alden.
"Conflict prevention's placement as a policy goal deep within the National Security Strategy (NSS), and the lack of specificity about how this is pursued, says a lot about how the U.S. government thinks about preventing future wars," Micah Zenko writes. Heprovides a series of recommendations to address under-prioritization and under-development of conflict prevention in U.S. policies and strategies.
"Snowden grew up in the shadow of the biggest intelligence-gathering organization in the world – the National Security Agency – in the Anne Arundel County community of Crofton, Maryland. A solidly middle-class, planned community of 27,000 that Money has ranked as one of the '100 Best Places to Live,' Crofton, like the towns around it, fed the workforce of the defense and intelligence contractors in the area. The NSA, which employs tens of thousands of people in the public and private sectors, was just 15 miles away, at Fort Meade, whose high school boasts a 'homeland-security program' to funnel kids into the industry."
National Security Advisor Susan Rice delivered a speech at Human Rights First's Annual Summit on December 4, 2013. She discussed the relation of human rights and security in the United States and the Obama administration's human rights policies and actions.
Americans are conflicted about the U.S. role in the world: a record 52 percent surveyed recently said "the United States should mind its own business internationally," the highest recorded response in fifty years and up from 30 percent just a decade ago. Furthermore, a record 80 percent of the public believe that the United States should address domestic problems over international ones.
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.