INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AND DEFENSE
Magazine or Newspaper Article, The Atlantic
We urge the next president to establish a White House Council of Historical Advisers. Historians made similar recommendations to Presidents Carter and Reagan during their administrations, but nothing ever came of these proposals. Operationally, the Council of Historical Advisers would mirror the Council of Economic Advisers, established after World War II. A chair and two additional members would be appointed by the president to full-time positions, and respond to assignments from him or her. They would be supported by a small professional staff and would be part of the Executive Office of the President.
August 23, 2016
By Chuck Freilich, Senior Fellow, International Security Program
"Israel must continue building an effective offensive response. Victory and military decision are only achieved through offense, not restraint and defense. The Hezbollah threat has, however, been with us for a long period and will unfortunately remain with us for many years to come. A war postponed may be a costly war, but it may also be a war that never breaks out. In this case, an effective offensive response may be even more costly than the threat itself, and we should thus seek to postpone resort to it for as long as possible."
By Stephen Biddle, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 1985–1987; Editorial Board Member, Quarterly Journal: International Security and Ivan Oelrich, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 1988-1989
This policy brief is based on "Future Warfare in the Western Pacific: Chinese Antiaccess/Area Denial, U.S. AirSea Battle, and Command of the Commons in East Asia," which appears in the summer 2016 issue of International Security.
August 18, 2016
Op-Ed, The National Interest
By Simon Saradzhyan, Director, Russia Matters Project; Assistant Director, U.S.-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
The disagreements between Moscow and Kiev on whether there were any armed skirmishes in Crimea at all and, if so, which side initiated them, did not stop international media from sounding alarms that a war may soon break out between Russia and Ukraine.
Op-Ed, Foreign Affairs
The United States has the best military in the world today, by far. U.S. forces have few, if any, weaknesses, and in many areas—from naval warfare to precision-strike capabilities, to airpower, to intelligence and reconnaissance, to special operations—they play in a totally different league from the militaries of other countries. Nor is this situation likely to change anytime soon, as U.S. defense spending is almost three times as large as that of the United States’ closest competitor, China, and accounts for about one-third of all global military expenditures—with another third coming from U.S. allies and partners.
Nevertheless, 15 years of war and five years of budget cuts and Washington dysfunction have taken their toll.
By Charles L Glaser, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 1982–1985; Editorial Board Member, Quarterly Journal: International Security
This policy brief is based on "Should the United States Reject MAD? Damage Limitation and U.S. Nuclear Strategy toward China" which will appear in the summer 2016 issue of International Security.
August 12, 2016
Op-Ed, The Washington Post
By David H. Petraeus, Non-resident Senior Fellow
In the next few months, a mixed force of Iraqi Arab and Kurdish security forces — including various Sunni and perhaps some Shiite militia elements — will enter Mosul, clear the city of Islamic State extremists and then work to bring governance, stability and reconstruction to one of Iraq’s most complex cities and its province.
August 12, 2016
Op-Ed, The Atlantic
By Juliette Kayyem, Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
"At the moment the explosions went off at the Boston Marathon, the first responders had no idea if it was the result of two brothers with a bomb or an overheated generator. It didn't matter. Plans in place to protect American citizens had to be viable for national-security threats, natural disasters, or any other mayhem."
August 12, 2016
In August 2015, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) published its first formal defense doctrine. Authored by IDF Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, the doctrine outlines the military's strategic and operational responses to the main threats facing Israel. The doctrine was published only in Hebrew.
In order to make this document accessible to the American strategic community, the Belfer Center commissioned an English translation of the strategy. Users can easily navigate the seven sections of the translation – the introduction, five chapters, and conclusion. In addition, the Belfer Center annotated the translated document to provide context for readers less familiar with the Israeli national security environment.
August 10, 2016
By Calder Walton, Ernest May Fellow in History and Policy, International Security Program
"It is reasonable to assume that, faced with vocal Scottish opposition to Trident—the Scottish National Party voted overwhelmingly not to renew it last month—if Scotland gains independence, policy-makers in Washington will soon start looking for alliances elsewhere in Europe with more stable and certain futures. Norway would seem to be an increasingly attractive alternative: it has similar seaports to the UK, is strategically placed for controlling sea-lanes with Russia, has well-respected intelligence services (which are not undergoing public censure in the way Britain's are after Chilcot), and it also has strategic access to Europe in a way that is an unknown quantity for Britain at present."