Issues and Policy
Iran: The New Claimant to Regional Power?
As tensions between the United States and Iran increase, the question of engagement between the two countries becomes more important than ever. The Forum spoke with leading Iran scholar, Professor Vali Nasr, about the possibility of conflict, Iran’s role in the Middle East, and the potential for democracy in Iran.
Can Human Rights Monitoring Halt Abuses in Sri Lanka?
In the Sri Lankan conflict, taking substantial steps to promote human rights accountability could also have a positive impact on the overall peace process. In this context, international human rights monitoring could play an important role by providing some immediate protection to the population and helping establish the conditions for a sustainable peace.
A NATO for the 21ST Century: Toward a New Strategic Concept
NATO will mark its 60th anniversary in 2009, but celebrations are meaningless without a continuing sense of purpose. NATO’s ongoing mission in Afghanistan, its efforts to combat terrorism and WMD proliferation, and its humanitarian relief capabilities, among other things, will continue to be critical to the security of its member states and the broader regions within which the Alliance operates. A new Strategic Concept clearly outlining NATO’s 21st century roles may be in order.
Illicit Drugs and the Americas: Avoiding a Pax Mafiosa
U.S. national and international drug control strategies over the last four administrations have been largely unsuccessful and have produced substantial negative consequences, such as the unintended empowerment of organized crime in the United States and transnational criminal organizations. To combat the trend, new approaches to the “war on drugs” are needed. This includes a new consensus on controlling illicit drugs.
China, Taiwan, and the Battle for Latin America
Latin America is the latest battleground in China and Taiwan’s struggle for international legitimacy. If Washington does not play a much-needed role in advising the burgeoning democracies and economies in its own backyard, Latin American states may fall victim to East Asia’s competing interests.
The EU’s New Impact on U.S. Environmental Regulation
European Union policy, such as the recent REACH initiative on chemicals, has had a discernible “back impact” on the environmental laws and policy of the United States. As the U.S. has deregulated, new EU legislation on the environment, public health, and consumer protection has effectively begun to rewrite U.S. public policy through diplomatic negotiation rather than public debate.
Hizbollah and Today’s Battle for Beirut
The summer 2006 conflict between Israel and Lebanon revealed the extent that Hizbollah influences domestic and regional politics. As the political standoff continues in Lebanon, Hizbollah retains notable popular support and boasts organizational and military efficacy that have taken the international community by surprise. What implications does Hizbollah’s strength have on U.S. foreign policy in the region— and where does Lebanon fit in the struggle for Middle East peace?
Zimbabwe’s Meltdown: Anatomy of a Peacetime Economic Collapse
The roots of Zimbabwe’s current crisis lie in a series of ill-fated decisions by a leader more intent on retaining power than serving his people. An increasingly active opposition movement, however, now calls for the consideration of a new blueprint for political and economic transition after Robert Mugabe.
Africa’s Troubled Leadership and What To Do About It
The legacies of South Africa’s Nelson Mandela and Botswana’s Sir Seretse Khama are in danger of being eclipsed by the tyranny of Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe. A new continent-wide initiative to train and guide Africa’s rising statespeople now offers a possible solution to the current dearth of principled leadership.
Europe’s Energy Policy: Creating Change
Reflecting the European Union’s need to modernize its policies to deal with the challenges of globalization, the European Council recently articulated a new energy policy for Europe. Changes in the global energy economy, growing energy interdependence, and climate change have pushed Europe toward a global leadership role in tomorrow’s energy world.
The Peace of Illusions: American Grand Strategy from 1940 to the Present
By Christopher Layne
Who Controls the Internet? Illusions of a Borderless World
By Jack Goldsmith and Tim Wu
Reviewed by Andrew Bennett