- A Tangled Embrace: What the JFK Papers Tell Us about the CIA's Anti-Castro Cuban Agents
In 1976, Cubana Flight 455 was brought down by a terrorist bomb. All 72 people aboard perished. Anti-Castro terrorist and longtime CIA asset Luis Posada is widely considered responsible, yet today he lives in Florida, a free man. Why was critical information about Posada and the CIA buried in the recently released JFK assassination files, even though his case has no relation to JFK?
- Top Risks and Ethical Decisions 2018 with Eurasia Group's Ian Bremmer
Probably the most dangerous geopolitical environment in decades-China, AI, Trump, end of Pax Americana--yes, it's very bad. But all these challenges energize political scientist Ian Bremmer to do his best work! Don't miss this great talk.
- Deciphering the Middle East and Trump's National Security Stategy, with Asha Castleberry
Asha Castleberry, Fordham professor and U.S. Army veteran, describes her "mixed reaction" to Trump's National Security Strategy--touching on China and Russia, cybersecurity, and climate change--and what effect it will actually have on the military's operations. Plus, she details an increasingly complicated Middle East, with the Saudi crown prince on a warpath and a dangerous transitional period in Syria and Iraq after major victories against ISIS.
- Trump's National Security Strategy, with Julianne Smith
"I would say most of the people I have talked to outside of government, including some people in Congress, have been a little taken aback," says Julie Smith, senior fellow at Center for a New American Security. "A lot of people have been left scratching their heads because a lot of what appears in the strategy has actually been contradicted by the president himself in one or another of his tweet storms."
- Slowing the Proliferation of Major Conventional Weapons with Jonathan D. Caverley
Although today's hot topic is nuclear proliferation, let's not forget that wars like Syria are being fought with conventional ones, such as aircraft and artillery. Jonathan Caverley has an intriguing and practical proposal to slow down the spread of these deadly weapons.
- Banning Nuclear Weapons with 2017 Nobel Peace Prize Winner ICAN
Did you know that 122 countries have adopted a treaty to ban nuclear weapons? The organization behind this movement is the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN). In this spirited and informative discussion, Ray Acheson and Beatrice Fihn of ICAN take apart the nuclear deterrence myth, expecially in the case of North Korea, and the belief that nukes are "special" and therefore exempt from the ban on targeting civilians.
- Digital World War: Islamists, Extremists, and the Fight for Cyber Supremacy, with Haroon Ullah
Despite defeats like Mosul and Raqqa, ISIS and other extremist groups are thriving, says Ullah. For them, the most important battlefield is not the physical one but the information one, and there they are winning. They are nimble, moving from open-source platforms to encrypted ones and are not afraid to fail, getting instant feedback on what propaganda works best. We need a much more concerted effort--a "Manhattan project"--to combat this.
- Trump, North Korea, China: War or Peace, with Gordon G. Chang
There is disturbing evidence that China is weaponizing North Korea, and it's time that Washington started asking Beijing some pointed questions, says Gordon Chang. The fact is, the United States has overwhelming leverage over China--we just don't use it enough--and China has overwhelming leverage over North Korea. "These two points lead to one conclusion, and that is, we can, without the use of force, disarm North Korea."
- The Rise of Duterte in the Philippines, with Richard Heydarian
Duterte is part of an arc of populism in emerging market democracies such as Turkey and India, says author Haydarian, but unlike populist movements in developed economies, its main supporters are the rising middle class. This newly prosperous group demands better living conditions and is increasingly attracted to strongmen leaders like Duterte, "who promise overnight solutions to very complicated 21st-century problems."
- Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides's Trap? with Graham Allison
Thucydides is not saying that the inevitable frictions between a rising power and a ruling one will always lead to war, says Allison. The danger is when "third-party actions become provocations to which one or the other feels obliged to react, to which the other primary actor feels obliged to respond, which then leads to a cascade, often dragging people where they do not want to go." Think North Korea.
- False Dawn: Protest, Democracy, and Violence in the New Middle East, with Steven A. Cook
Half a decade after Arabs across the Middle East poured into the streets to demand change, hopes for democracy have disappeared in a maelstrom of violence and renewed state repression. How did things go so wrong so quickly across a wide range of regimes? What role can and should the United States play? Don't miss this conversation with Steven Cook, an expert on Arab and Turkish politics as well as U.S.-Middle East policy.
- North Korea: A Conversation between Joel Rosenthal and Devin Stewart
Carnegie Council President Joel Rosenthal and Senior Fellow Devin Stewart discuss the tense North Korea situation. What does Kim Jong-un want? How should the United States respond? What would the "enlightened realist" do?
- Podcast Series on Rising Tensions in Asia
Over the summer, Carnegie Council Senior Fellow and Asia Dialogues Director Devin Stewart continued his series of interviews with a wide range of experts on Asia. Topics covered include U.S.-Asia relations under President Trump, North Korea, the Trump effect in Japan, Islamic influence in Indonesian politics, avoiding war with China, and more.
- The Trump Effect in Japan with Robert Dujarric
"When you have a president like Trump, you do have to ask yourself: 'What will the United States look like in five years or in ten years?' A strong United States is what the government of Japan wants. In that sense, Trump is a threat. It is one that not all, but I feel a lot of Japanese analysts, are oblivious to. And second, what can they do? The answer is they can't do anything."
- Heidi Grant on U.S. Air Force Global Partnerships
George Washington understood that building capable partners during peacetime can actually prevent war, says Heidi Grant. She is deputy under secretary of the Air Force, International Affairs, an organization which works with over a hundred countries to address shared security challenges. This includes selling them military equipment and increasing their capability to conduct their own ISR: intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance.
- Stratfor's Rodger Baker on the Rebalancing of World Politics and Asia
"I think the biggest impact of Donald Trump's presidency, particularly in Asia-Pacific, has been the concept of uncertainty," says Baker, citing the lack of a clear and concise policy from the administration. "Uncertainty, if the United States were just a small peripheral country, is manageable; uncertainty when the United States is such a large and impactful country becomes very difficult to manage."
- Scott D. Sagan on the Nuclear Necessity Principle
Major changes must be made if U.S. nuclear war plans are to conform to the principles of just war doctrine and the law of armed conflict, declares Stanford University's Scott Sagan. He proposes a new doctrine: "the nuclear necessity principle." In sum, the U.S. will not use nuclear weapons against any target that could be reliably destroyed by conventional means.
- Alexander Klimburg on "The Darkening Web: The War for Cyberspace"
In the West we view cyber threats as largely a technical issue, while in Russia and China they see it in terms of propaganda, information control, and influencing their domestic affairs, says Alex Klimburg. When we confuse these two narratives, we risk missing other nations' key strategies to push the Internet in unwanted directions. Indeed, almost without realizing it, we are contributing to something approaching an arms race in cyber.
- Isaac Stone Fish: Facts and Fiction on North Korea
Asia Society's Isaac Stone Fish is working on a novel set in Pyongyang, but he's also looking for the truth in the "world's most opaque country." Why does he think the North Koreans are acting rationally? What are the possible outcomes if tensions continue to rise between Kim and Trump?
- Mira Rapp-Hooper on "Subcontracting" U.S. Policy Toward Asia
The U.S. and China have fundamentally different priorities regarding the Korean Peninsula, explains Asia expert Rapp-Hooper. "So, by subcontracting North Korea policy to China," she says, "I think the United States is evincing some amount of naïveté on how far Beijing is likely to actually be willing to go."