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Foreign Policy

Obama Needs a Grand Strategy

  • By
  • Rosa Brooks,
  • New America Foundation
January 23, 2012 |

Does the United States have a grand strategy? If so, what is it?

If you rummage around on the White House's website, you'll eventually stumble across something called The National Security Strategy of the United States. In fact, you'll find more than half a dozen National Security Strategy documents, since they're congressionally mandated. (Of course, in time-honored executive-branch tradition, they're generally submitted a year or two after the deadline).

Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney and GOP Forget Iraq Mistake in Push for Iran War

  • By
  • Peter Beinart,
  • New America Foundation
January 23, 2012 |

Newt Gingrich thinks that because CNN’s John King asked about his personal life last week, the “elite, liberal media” is out to get Republican presidential candidates. Nonsense. If journalists really wanted to make Gingrich and his fellow GOP frontrunners squirm, they’d ask why they supported the war in Iraq.

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The Haitian Migration

  • By
  • Charles Kenny,
  • New America Foundation
January 9, 2012 |

As we approach the second anniversary of the devastating Haiti earthquake, which killed around 150,000 people and destroyed much of Port-au-Prince, there has been mixed progress.  About half of the rubble has been cleared (if that sounds slow, consider it took five years to remove far less rubble in Aceh after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami). About half a million people are still living in camps in Haiti -- but that is down from closer to 1.5 million two years ago. Meanwhile cholera, introduced by U.N.

You May Want to Ignore Mexico

  • By
  • Andrés Martinez,
  • New America Foundation
November 14, 2011 |

Last Friday morning, the second most powerful man in Mexico’s government, the cabinet member leading the war against the drug cartels, died in a helicopter crash. Mexicans were stunned: Francisco Blake Mora was President Felipe Calderón’s second interior secretary to die in an air crash in three years.

Despite Everything, There's Plenty to Celebrate in 2012

  • By
  • Charles Kenny,
  • New America Foundation
December 31, 2011 |

It seems a hard time to be confident about the state of the country – or the state of the planet. We are still facing the aftershocks of the worst recession since the great depression and a significant risk of dipping back into it. Europe's economy looks increasingly old and enfeebled compared with the virile young tigers of Asia. Terrorism strikes fear at home while war drags on in Afghanistan and violence is used against protesters in Syria and elsewhere. And the condition of the global environment appears fragile at best.

Israeli-Palestinian Talks in Jordan: Working Hard at Treading Water

  • By
  • Daniel Levy,
  • Leila Hilal,
  • New America Foundation
January 5, 2012 |

On January 6, 2011, then Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Sharm el Sheikh in an effort to resuscitate the flagging peace process. Egypt for many years played the role of regional protector of an Israeli-Palestinian peace process, which was extremely heavy on process while being ever-more transparently light on delivering peace. It is a role that the new Egypt is unlikely to volunteer for.

Iraq Is a Mess. But Leaving Was the Right Call

  • By
  • Douglas Ollivant,
  • New America Foundation
December 23, 2011 |

Let us stipulate some ugly facts up front. Iraq remains a weak state. The political institutions are—charitably—immature. The business climate is not overly attractive and corruption is endemic. Were it not for oil, there would be no real economy. There is a serious terrorism problem. Relationships with all the neighboring states are problematic. Sectarian divides remain tense, with some key fault lines unresolved. The country’s armed forces remain incapable of defending its international borders.

The Last Straw for Bedouin in Jerusalem's Periphery?

  • By
  • Jonathan Guyer,
  • New America Foundation
December 23, 2011 |

United Nations officials have issued a warning that the Government of Israel's plans for Palestinian Bedouin communities living in Jerusalem's periphery could constitute "mass forcible transfers" and "grave breaches" of international law. A pending plan in the West Bank threatens to displace Khan al-Ahmar, a Bedouin village of refugees originally from Israel's south, pushed off their indigenous land in the early 1950's. Khan al-Ahmar lies on the side of a major West Bank thoroughfare and is sandwiched between the Israeli settlement of Maale Adumin and Jerusalem.

Year of the Fist

  • By
  • Romesh Ratnesar,
  • New America Foundation
December 22, 2011 |

By historical measures, there’s really not all that much to be angry about. Since 1981, the proportion of the developing world living in extreme poverty has fallen from 50 percent to less than 20 percent, according to the United Nations. Infant mortality is down across the board; the number of girls in school is up. Terrorists and tyrants get their comeuppance with toe-tapping regularity. The chances of dying in war have never been lower. In 2011, the 7 billionth person was born into a world that’s richer, healthier, and safer than at any time in history.

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Is the Embargo Doomed? A Fight Over the Future of Cuban American Politics

  • By
  • Anya Landau French,
  • New America Foundation
December 27, 2011 |

When Congress nearly failed to continue funding the government recently, one of the provisions in the spending bill that they couldn't agree on was an obscure bit of legislation related to the almost 50-year-old embargo of Cuba.

The provision -- which was eventually dropped -- would have reinstated a Bush administration policy that restricted Cuban Americans to visiting family in Cuba only once every three years, and then only to immediate family and with no humanitarian exceptions -- even for deathbed and funeral visits.

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