Newsletter Article, Belfer Center Newsletter
By Susan M. Lynch, Program Assistant, International Security Program; Web Manager, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program
A survey of recent books by Belfer Center affiliates.
Journal Article, Bologna Center Journal of International Affairs
By Timothy Sandole, Associate, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is considered the most successful military alliance in history, and yet, its future is clouded in uncertainty. With the end of the Cold War, followed by the breakup of the Soviet Union, NATO has suffered from a structural problem that has become more acute over time—the absence of a clearly defined existential threat to Europe. This makes for a dubious raison d’être. If NATO’s future was ambiguous immediately following the Cold War, it is disquieting to consider its role in an environment of draconian defense cuts, fiscal woes in the United States, a Europe-wide financial crisis, and a U.S. military shift toward the Pacific.
April 24, 2013
Op-Ed, Washington Post
By David Ignatius, Senior Fellow, Future of Diplomacy Project
"John Maynard Keynes once said that words should be used aggressively, “for they are the assault of thoughts on the unthinking.” That’s a starting point for an appreciation of Mervyn King, who will retire soon as governor of the Bank of England and who has displayed the quirky intellectual passion of Keynes himself."
By Donna Lee
Forests can play a significant role in helping to avoid dangerous climate change, and a global agreement under the UNFCCC would be uniquely placed to support efforts in this regard. The rising global demand for agricultural and other land-based products means that pressures on land are increasingly cross-border, and there is an accelerating expansion of the deforestation frontier. Smart domestic policies are critical to solving the deforestation challenge, and recent private sector interest in "sustainable agriculture" is encouraging. However, global agreements that value standing forests and provide incentives that positively impact land use change decisions can be an equally important tool.
April 4, 2013
Op-Ed, The Huffington Post
By Charles G. Cogan, Associate, International Security Program
"...[U]nlike the French in Algeria, the Israelis, back in history, had a leading presence in the land they much, much later moved in on; nevertheless, there are similarities. What struck me most about The Gatekeepers was reminiscent of The Battle of Algiers: thousands and thousands of indigenous faces shouting or silently expressing their unhappiness at living under the thumb of foreign occupying forces. Looking at this sea of frustration, in frames that must have come largely from official Israeli footage, I said to myself, how can the Israelis, in continuing an occupation that has lasted over 45 years, hope to contain this movement?"
Newsletter Article, Belfer Center Newsletter
In this article, new Belfer Center visting fellows tackle some of the most pressing current issues in international relations including U.S.-Brazilian relations, the European financial crisis, the legality of drone strikes and what a post-Assad Syria will look like.
March 29, 2013
This seminar examined the prospects for further nuclear arms reductions between the United States and Russia, including the possibility that negotiations might be expanded to weapons not limited by the New START Treaty. The seminar covered U.S. and Russian differences over missile defense and how those might be resolved to allow a cooperative NATO-Russia missile defense arrangement for Europe.
The United States' extended system of security commitments creates a set of institutional relationships that foster political communication. Alliance institutions are first about security protection, but they also bind states together and create institutional channels of communication. For example, NATO has facilitated ties and associated institutions that increase the ability of the United States and Europe to talk to each other and to do business. Likewise, the bilateral alliances in East Asia also play a communication role beyond narrow security issues. Consultations and exchanges spill over into other policy areas. This gives the United States the capacity to work across issue areas, using assets and bargaining chips in one area to make progress in another.
March 21, 2013
Op-Ed, Boston Globe
By Juliette Kayyem, Lecturer in Public Policy
"The austerity measures enacted in response to the Greek economic crisis have propelled the rise of right-wing politics; nationalist groups are gaining footholds throughout the country. One far-right party, Golden Dawn, has embraced the language and ideology of German fascism, focusing its ire on immigrants. Greece sits at the crossroads of Europe, Africa, and Asia, and shares a porous border with Turkey. The mass migration of refugees from Africa and the Middle East, in particular Syria with its 1 million displaced citizens, has led to increased violence against real and perceived outsiders in Greece."
March 20, 2013
Magazine or Newspaper Article, The European
"Iran has always been a major power in that region. Under Saddam however, Iran and Iraq were bitter enemies who fought a long war and were strongly opposed to one another. There was almost a rough balance of power between the two countries. By reducing Iraq's power and by allowing the Shia to become the dominant political force in Iraq, the US removed the main country balancing Iran, and helped bring to power a government that has at least some sympathies and links to Iran. So, Iran is by far the main strategic beneficiary of the Iraq War, which made it even more difficult for the US and its allies to deal with the country."