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Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

What Terrorism Could Have in Store for America

by Mark Moyarvia Analysis
Monday, February 2, 2015

The scarcity of significant terrorist attacks in recent years has led Americans to assume that the days of mass casualty attacks are in the past. But history teaches us to beware of the assumption that recent trends foretell the future. Americans are paying insufficient attention to unexpected events in which terrorists inflict serious harm on the United States.

A More Balanced Approach to Climate Change Policy

by Thomas F. Stephensonvia Analysis
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
Our country urgently needs a more balanced approach to the global warming and climate change issue. On its own, it is a major policy problem, and it has also come to dominate discussions over our country’s broader energy strategy.
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Managing the Cyber Security Threat

by Abraham D. Sofaervia Analysis
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The cyber threat is part of a transnational game, with low barriers of entry, increasing sophistication, increasing cost, and no prospect that any state will be victorious.  The U.S. needs to manage the risk by focusing on those aspects of cyber insecurity that relate to commerce and critical infrastructure, leaving traditional forms of intelligence and military activities unregulated; and by allowing private companies and individuals to use strong encryption or open source software without built-in vulnerabilities. 

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Transnational Terrorism

by Stephen D. Krasnervia Analysis
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Given the low probability of a mass casualty terrorist attack and the lack of new attacks since 9/11, the U.S. is probably devoting too many resources to fighting terrorism. However, no political leader could endorse this conclusion, so the challenge of counterterrorism policy is channeling the political will terrorism engenders effectively.

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Moral Hazard and the Obama Doctrine

by James D. Fearonvia Analysis
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The U.S. war against ISIL risks helping the enemy in the long run by lessening locals’ incentives to develop their own military and state capabilities, and that it also helps with the enemy’s recruitment and PR. The more the U.S. does militarily, the less our friends and allies in the region do.

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Thoughts on Unconventional Threats and Terrorism

by Ambassador Karl W. Eikenberryvia Analysis
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The term “unconventional threat” has often been an imprecise classification tool and has led to a focus on tactics at the expense of strategy in the U.S. struggle against transnational terrorists groups like Al Qaeda.  Combating transnational terrorism requires properly evaluating the threat terrorism poses, a deep understanding of geopolitical context surrounding a transnational terrorist group, and a willingness to be flexible in the tools used to mitigate risk, including focusing on improving countermeasures in the homeland. 

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KTO KOVO?

by Coit Blackervia Analysis
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Russia’s aggressive actions in the Ukraine are intended to signal to the West that there are limits to what Russia will accept in what it sees as aggressive Western action against Russia, even if Russia’s intervention comes at the cost of a split Ukraine. Ukraine will likely remain a frozen conflict, with the real issue being “for how long, and what cost, Putin will seek to impose his vision of the new Russia on the neighboring states of the region”.

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Dealing with China

by Francis Fukuyamavia Analysis
Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Francis Fukuyama argues that, while neither the Chinese economic nor political models are sustainable in the long run, “We need to assume that China will remain on its current growth trajectory” and “cannot assume a deus ex machina solution to our present problem.” The first step, he says, entails building a multilateral framework for dealing with China's territorial claims.

Speaking the Law: Chapter 5

by Kenneth Anderson, Benjamin Wittesvia Analysis
Tuesday, September 23, 2014

In chapter 5, the authors look at the criticisms of the Obama administration’s legal policies on counterterrorism from both the political Right and the political Left—and explain why they largely reject both. They assert that although the framework of law and legitimacy that the administration has laid out is not without its problems, the legal, ethical, and policy framework is far more robust, as a matter of law, morality, and legitimacy, than the critics acknowledge. Moreover, in the view of the authors, it compares favorably with all the alternatives the various strains of critics have proposed in its stead.

Speaking the Law: Chapter 4

by Kenneth Anderson, Benjamin Wittesvia Analysis
Tuesday, September 23, 2014

In chapter 4, the authors discuss the Obama administration’s speeches in response to the NSA revelations made public by Edward Snowden and review the involvement of other branches of government in the legal framework described in the administration’s national security speeches. They explore the degree to which each branch is implicated in major aspects of the administration’s position. They also look at the degree to which the international system and its actors—other countries and international nongovernmental organizations—have had their voices heard, even though outsiders to the government, and have exerted leverage to influence it.

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