April 11, 2016
Op-Ed, Project Syndicate
By Ishac Diwan, Affiliate, Middle East Initiative
Discussion of education in the Arab world has focused only rarely on the role of schooling in changing social and political mores. This is unfortunate, because educated citizens of Arab countries tend to be much less emancipated politically and socially, on average, than their peers in other parts of the world. If Arab societies are ever to become more open and economically dynamic, their education systems will have to embrace and promote values appropriate to that goal.
April 7, 2016
Op-Ed, Foreign Policy
By Stephen M. Walt, Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Affairs; Faculty Chair, International Security Program
"...[A]fter seven-plus years in office, this most articulate of presidents never articulated a clear and coherent framework identifying what those vital interests are and why and spelling out how the United States could advance broader political ideals at acceptable cost and risk."
Newsletter Article, Belfer Center Newsletter
Call it the fall heard round the world.
The dramatic decline in oil pricesófrom over $100 a barrel in 2014 to below $30 this yearóhas been one of the most disruptive and least expected developments in global energy markets since the 2008 financial crisis.
With the continuation of high oil production and low prices, the Belfer Centerís Khalid Alsweilem, Calestous Juma, David Keith, Henry Lee, Leonardo Maugeri, Meghan OíSullivan, and Robert Stavins offer insights, predictions, and recommendations based on their research and varied perspectives.
April 1, 2016
By Calestous Juma, Professor of the Practice of International Development; Director, Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; Principal Investigator, Agricultural Innovation in Africa
For a summary of Prof. Juma's Twitter Q&A on this topic, click here. #AskCJuma
Digital connectivity has the potential to do for Africa what railroads did for Western economies in the 19th century. The digital revolution is not just about communication. It is about recognizing that information is the currency of all economic activities.
March 29, 2016
Op-Ed, Agence Global
By Rami Khouri, Senior Fellow, Middle East Initiative
"Hundreds of thousands of desperate and dehumanized individuals transform their former local grumblings or security-forced passivity into a growing global network of terrorists and anarchists whose numbers are beyond the capacity of any intelligence systemís ability to monitor, arrest, prevent, or shut down."
...[M]ilitary integration's benefits are unclear, the costs can be high, and the outsiders pressing for it do not suffer the consequences. The first rule of international intervention is "do no harm." Military integration fails that test.
March 27, 2016
Op-Ed, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Martin B. Malin, Executive Director, Project on Managing the Atom, William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
"World leaders face a stark choice at the final Nuclear Security Summit later this week: Will they commit to efforts that continue to improve security for nuclear weapons, fissile materials, and nuclear facilities, or will the 2016 summit be seen in retrospect as the point at which attention drifted elsewhere, and nuclear security stalled and began to decline? The answer will shape the chances that terrorist groups, including the Islamic State, could get their hands on the materials they need to build a crude nuclear bomb...."
By Zachary D. Kaufman, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, International Security Program
In United States Law and Policy on Transitional Justice: Principles, Politics, and Pragmatics, Zachary D. Kaufman explores the U.S. government's support for, or opposition to, certain transitional justice institutions. By first presenting an overview of possible responses to atrocities (such as war crimes tribunals) and then analyzing six historical case studies, Kaufman evaluates why and how the United States has pursued particular transitional justice options since World War II.
March 16, 2016
Op-Ed, The Boston Globe
By Simon Saradzhyan, Director, Russia Matters Project; Assistant Director, U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Vladimir Putinís Tuesday decision to scale down the Russian military campaign in Syria seems to have caught world leaders off their guard. But is the Russian leaderís declaration of mission accomplished really that surprising? A brief look at the list of Russiaís stated†short-term objectives in Syria, which I formulated shortly after beginning of Russian air campaign, shows that Putin has attained all that he wanted ó and made significant progress toward his longer-term objectives as well. Did the Russian air strikes prevent Bashir Assadís government from losing control over the remaining part of Syria and enable his forces to eliminate most immediate threats to their positions, making frontlines more defensible?
March 10, 2016
An audio recording of a book talk by†Melani Cammett, Professor of Government, Harvard University and Ishac Diwan, Distinguished Chair of Arab World Studies, Paris Sciences et Lettres.