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Steve Coll |
Pulitzer Prize-winner Steve Coll is dean of the Columbia University School of Journalism and a staff writer at The New Yorker.
A Conversation with Lieutenant General H. R. McMaster | 12/15/14
H. R. McMaster, Martin L. Cook
How can U.S. soldiers be trained to maintain ethical and legal standards in today's complex and often brutal environment? How is the Army preparing for current and future conflicts, in terms of military hardware, technology, and even social media? In this wide-ranging talk, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster discusses these challenges and more.
America in Retreat: The New Isolationism and the Coming Global Disorder | 12/10/14
America is not in decline, but it's certainly in retreat, says Stephens, and this is a mistake. He argues that the United States is the ultimate guarantor of a relatively decent, stable, liberal world order, governed by a sense of rules and the knowledge, both among its friends and adversaries, that it has the will and the wherewithal to ensure its interests.
Strategies for Countering Violent Extremists | 12/05/14
Jean-Paul Laborde, Joanne J. Myers
Jean-Paul Laborde, executive director of the UN Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) discusses the role of the UN in countering terrorism worldwide.
From "Indispensable Nation" to "Realism-Based Restraint": Reconsidering U.S. Engagement with the World | 11/24/14
Chas W. Freeman, Jr., David C. Speedie
Former ambassador Chas Freeman has had a wide breadth of diplomatic experience, from the Middle East to Africa, East Asia, and Europe. In this conversation he eloquently speaks his mind on the negative effects of sanctions, the folly of U.S. unqualified support for Israel, the U.S. strategy and diplomacy deficits, and much more.
Citizenship, Identity, and Conflict in South Asia's Borderlands | 11/20/14
Suchitra Vijayan, Liana Sterling
The intrepid Suchitra Vijayan is working on a 9,000-mile journey through South Asia, which has taken her to Afghanistan and Pakistan, the disputed territory of Kashmir, and India's borders with Burma and China. What has she learned so far about the effects of borders on human lives?
Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy | 10/15/14
What are the requirements for a liberal democracy? It's not just voting, says Fukuyama. It needs a distinction between public and private interest; rule of law; and accountability. Although the U.S. started off as a weak, corrupt state, it became a liberal democracy. Yet all political systems are subject to decay, and that's what's happening to the U.S. today.
A Conversation with Lieutenant-General Roméo A. Dallaire | 10/02/14
Roméo A. Dallaire, James Traub
In this inspiring conversation, Dallaire talks about his faith in the principle of R2P--"one of the great innovations of our time"--and how to go about actually implementing it; the tragedy of Rwanda; and most of all, his work to prevent the use of child soldiers.
A Conversation with Law Professor and Columnist Rosa Brooks on Obama's Foreign Policy | 06/12/14
Rosa Brooks, James Traub
With an insider's perspective, Rosa Brooks candidly discusses U.S. foreign policy, from Kosovo to Afghanistan, Syria, and Ukraine, along with her views on Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Would Clinton have made a better president?
Ethics Matter: A Conversation with Sebastian Junger | 03/18/14
Sebastian Junger, James Traub
Journalist Sebastian Junger knows about war from the inside: the horror and pain, the excitement and heightened awareness, and the fierce brotherhood between soldiers. In this moving conversation he talks about his life and work, and ponders on what everyone owes their country, whether they choose to fight or stay home.
"War on Terror," an Insider's View: A Conversation with Harold H. Koh | 02/28/14
Harold Hongju Koh, James Traub
As legal adviser to the State Department from 2009 to 2013, Harold Koh was responsible for making judgments about the most difficult issues in the "war on terror": drone strikes, military tribunals, preventive detention. This fascinating and revealing conversation explores Koh's moral convictions and the inner workings of government.
The Future of American Warfighting: Lessons of the Contemporary Battlefield | 02/27/14
Noah Shachtman, Patrick J. Mahaney, Jr., Ben FitzGerald
What are the ethical and legal questions raised by unmanned aerial vehicles, drones, and surveillance? How do they affect combatants, decision-makers, and civilians? An expert panel explores these crucial issues.
The Fog of Peace: The Human Face of Conflict Resolution | 02/25/14
The courageous Gianni Picco played a central role in negotiating the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, met with Saddam Hussein to bring an end to the Iran-Iraq War, and traveled to both Beirut and Tehran to rescue 11 hostages and 91 other prisoners. How did he do it? By treating adversaries as individuals, not just government representatives.
Rules of Engagement: The Legal, Ethical and Moral Challenges of the Long War | 02/13/14
Kenneth Anderson, Charles A. Blanchard, Robert Grenier
Can the drone campaign be legally and morally justified? What are the limits to the president's authority when it comes to targeted killing? Don't miss this discussion with Robert Grenier, former CIA counterterrorism director; Charles Blanchard, former general counsel of the U.S. Air Force; and Kenneth Anderson, professor of law at American University.
The Future of Transatlantic Security Cooperation after 2014 | 01/07/14
Brian Hensarling, Marco Overhaus, Adam Jarosz, Matthew Kroenig, Zornitsa Stoyanova-Yerburgh, Thomas A. Walsh
2014 may be a turning point for transatlantic security cooperation. This paper identifies the three most relevant "drivers" in this regard: financial and resource constraints, a turn towards a more inward-looking perspective in EU and NATO capitals, and shifting power relations in the international system. The paper concludes with policy recommendations.
Ethics Matter: The Future of War, with Andrew Exum | 12/19/13
Andrew Exum, James Traub
Andrew Exum is a scholar, author, and former U.S. Army officer. In this revealing talk, he describes, in vivid detail, his days leading platoons in Iraq and Afghanistan; insights gained while working at the Pentagon; the successes and failures of America's counterinsurgency efforts; and the growing civilian-military divide, especially in the Northeast.
The Constitution Project: Task Force Report on Detainee Treatment | 11/27/13
David Gushee, David R. Irvine
In many instances, U.S. forces used interrogation techniques which constitute torture; the nation's most senior officials bear ultimate responsibility; and there is no evidence that torture produced significant information of value. These are the unanimous conclusions of the task force on detainee treatment, as discussed here by two of its members.
Important Choices: Foreign Policy and Defense Spending | 10/07/13
Lawrence Korb, David C. Speedie
How much does the U.S. actually spend on defense and where does that money go? Lawrence Korb, an expert on the federal budget, the military, and national security, discusses the tough choices the U.S. needs to make on defense spending; relations with Iran; Syria; NATO; and nuclear weapons.
U.S. Policy on Iran and the Middle East: Where Do We Go From Here? | 09/27/13
Gary Sick, David C. Speedie
Are we on the brink of a new era in Iran-U.S. relations? Maybe. Iran expert Gary Sick discusses President Rouhani's UN speech, which took place just before this event, plus previous missed opportunities and the current possibilities of rapprochement. While condemning the regime, he sees an opening for constructive negotiations.
The Fate of Cultural Property in Wartime: Why it Matters and What Should Be Done | 09/17/13
Jennifer Otterson Mollick
Cultural property protection in conflict is often neglected as people argue that the lives of individuals in warzones are far more important than old buildings, pots, and books. However, it is not a question of prioritizing. We must not dismiss cultural property protection in conflicts as secondary to humanitarian tragedy, but as part of the effort to save humanity.