In the Foreword to this paper by Andrei Kokoshin, Belfer Center Director Graham Allison writes: "The global nuclear order is reaching a tipping point. Several trends are advancing along crooked paths, each undermining this order. These trends include North Korea’s expanding nuclear weapons program, Iran’s continuing nuclear ambitions, Pakistan’s increasing instability, growing doubts about the sustainability of the nonproliferation regime in general, and terrorist groups’ enduring aspirations to acquire nuclear weapons. Andrei Kokoshin, deputy of the State Duma and former secretary of Russia’s Security Council, analyzes these challenges that threaten to cause the nuclear order to collapse in the following paper."
October 20, 2010
By Nicholas Burns, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
The economic, political, and military rise of India is reshaping world politics and promises to make India both a true global power and one of the most important bilateral partners of the United States. This report, authored by former Deputy Secretary of State Richard L. Armitage, former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns and CNAS Senior Fellow Richard Fontaine – and endorsed by over 20 esteemed foreign policy experts - provides a blueprint for the path forward for this critical relationship.
"U.S. Interagency Regional Foreign Policy Implementation: A Survey of Current Practice and an Analysis of Options for Improvement"
By Robert S. Pope, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 2009–2010
The United States has a complex, multi-agency structure to plan, synchronize, and execute foreign policy and national security. By statute, the State Department is the lead agency for foreign policy. However, in practice, the much larger and better-funded Department of Defense conducts much of America's foreign policy activity, often with little coordination with the State Department or other relevant agencies. Over the past two decades, the military's Geographic Combatant Commands have taken an increasing lead in planning and executing foreign policy activities around the world. This has often effectively put a military face and voice on America's foreign policy, sometimes to the detriment of broader U.S. goals and relationships. More effective U.S. foreign policy requires greater interagency coordination at all levels and a greater role for the State Department as America's lead agency for foreign policy.
June 2, 2010
"Proliferation of nuclear technologies and the increasing threat that these technologies could be used by dictatorial regimes and forces of international terrorism add urgency to the goal of protecting the international community from the pending nuclear catastrophe," according to senior IMEMO researcher Stanislav Ivanov.
By Joseph S. Nye, Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor
Power depends upon context, and the rapid growth of cyber space is an important new context in world politics. The low price of entry, anonymity, and asymmetries in vulnerability means that smaller actors have more capacity to exercise hard and soft power in cyberspace than in many more traditional domains of world politics. The largest powers are unlikely to be able to dominate this domain as much as they have others like sea or air. But cyberspace also illustrates the point that diffusion of power does not mean equality of power or the replacement of governments as the most powerful actors in world politics.
April 19, 2010
By Hassan Abbas, Former Senior Advisor, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Despite comparatively progressive forces taking control of Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province (NWFP) after success in the February 2008 provincial elections, stability remains elusive and the law and order situation has gradually deteriorated, raising important questions about the correlation between politics in the province and the nature and extent of militancy there. This essay investigates how different political and religious forces have influenced the state of affairs in the province in recent years.
By Kelly Sims Gallagher, Senior Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group
This paper outlines the current situation regarding advanced coal and carbon capture and storage (CCS) in the United States and China. The strategic interest in cooperation on coal and CCS is explored, and then three options for collaboration are identified and discussed. None of the options are mutually exclusive. Remaining questions for discussion are provided at the end.
September 11, 2009
By Simon Saradzhyan, Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Although powerful contingents within the Russian leadership ascribe significant value to the various roles played by the country's nuclear arsenal, they have nonetheless enumerated consecutive or simultaneous external conditions necessary for Russia to embark on the road towards eliminating nuclear weapons. These include: universal implementation of existing nuclear arms control and nonproliferation treaties; further and irreversible cuts in U.S.-Russian nuclear arsenals; constraints on U.S. missile defense and enhancement of Russian conventional forces; and resolution of major conflicts. Subsequently, there will be a verifiable accounting of all nuclear powers' nuclear arsenals, their reduction and elimination, followed by guarantees that no country or sub-state actor would be able to develop/acquire such weapons in the future.
"Enhancing Full-Spectrum Flexibility: Striking the Balance to Maximize Force Effectiveness in Conventional and Counterinsurgency Operations"
By William D. Anderson, Jr., Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 2008-2009
With the United States currently engaged in difficult and taxing counterinsurgency operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, renewed emphasis has been focused upon the country's capabilities and priorities vis-à-vis this type of warfare. Within the military, the Air Force has been especially and increasingly criticized for being too enamored with a Cold-War era conventionally minded force structure and for not shifting aggressively to meet the threats of COIN-style conflicts that many predict will be pervasive throughout the Global War on Terror.
This paper addresses the conceptual capabilities and limitations of air power in COIN in order to illuminate how the Air Force can leverage the distinct asymmetric advantage that air power presents across the spectrum of conflict. This asymmetry is founded upon a clear U.S. superiority in air power capabilities combined with the unique flexibility inherent in air power. An understanding of air power's efficacy in COIN, measured against conventional requirements and capabilities, will inform decisions on appropriate force structure and employment.
The domestic and international steps outlined in this paper could greatly advance the development and implementation of a GHG-mitigation strategy in the Indian coal-power sector, while allowing the sector to contribute suitably to the country’s energy needs. The key to success will be adopting a deliberate approach, with short- and long-term perspectives in mind, that allows for the development of an integrated energy and climate policy.