James M. Lindsay

The Water's Edge

Lindsay analyzes the politics shaping U.S. foreign policy and the sustainability of American power.

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Showing posts for "Politics"

The World Next Week: Barack Obama Is Inaugurated, Shinzo Abe Visits Southeast Asia, and Israel and Jordan Vote

by James M. Lindsay
The U.S. Capitol prepares for President Obama's second inauguration with a dress rehearsal on January 13, 2013 (Mike Theiler/Courtesy Reuters). The U.S. Capitol prepared for President Obama's second inauguration with a dress rehearsal on January 13, 2013 (Mike Theiler/Courtesy Reuters).

The World Next Week podcast is up. Bob McMahon and I discussed Obama’s second inauguration; Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe’s tour of Southeast Asia; and next week’s elections in Israel and Jordan Read more »

The World Next Week: Future U.S. Troop Levels in Afghanistan, Colombia and FARC Peace Talks, and the North American International Auto Show

by James M. Lindsay
U.S. president Barack Obama and Afghan president Hamid Karzai meet in Kabul in May 2012 (Kevin Lamarque/Courtesy Reuters). U.S. president Barack Obama and Afghan president Hamid Karzai meet in Kabul in May 2012 (Kevin Lamarque/Courtesy Reuters).

The World Next Week podcast is up. Bob McMahon and I discussed the debate over future U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan, the resumption of peace talks between the Colombian government and the FARC rebels next week in Havana, and the start of the North American International Auto Show. Read more »

The World Next Week: Global Economic Risks After the Fiscal Cliff, Hugo Chavez’s Inauguration, and U.S.-Russian Talks on Syria

by James M. Lindsay
A man walks past a mural depicting Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in Caracas (Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Courtesy Reuters). A man walks past a mural depicting Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in Caracas (Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Courtesy Reuters).

The World Next Week podcast is up. Bob McMahon and I discussed global economic risks, Hugo Chavez’s presidential inauguration in Venezuela, and upcoming U.S.-Russian talks on Syria with UN and Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi. Read more »

World Outlook in 2013

by James M. Lindsay
Nigerian River state governor Amechi stands with security officials to assess a burnt commercial bus (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters). Nigerian River state governor Amechi stands with security officials to assess a burnt commercial bus (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters).

CFR.org just posted a conversation I had with Bernard Gwertzman about the world outlook in 2013. We discussed three sets of issues: turmoil in the greater Middle East (Egypt, Iran, Syria, and Afghanistan); rising tensions in East Asia (territorial disputes in the East China and South China seas and the U.S. “pivot”; and turbulence in the global economy (prompted in part by the impending “fiscal cliff” in the United States).  But those three subjects hardly exhaust the list of issues that could dominate the news in the coming year. Here are five other stories I will be watching in 2013. Read more »

Ten Foreign Policy Voices That Will Be Missed

by James M. Lindsay
A boatman arranges wishing spheres released onto the Singapore River as part of New Year Day celebrations. (Edgar Su/Courtesy Reuters) A boatman arranges wishing spheres released onto the Singapore River as part of New Year Day celebrations. (Edgar Su/Courtesy Reuters)

Year’s end is a time for taking stock, counting successes and assessing failures. It is also a time for remembering those who are no longer with us. Here are ten people who died in 2012 who made significant contributions to American foreign policy. They will be missed. Read more »

The World Next Year: 2013 Edition

by James M. Lindsay
(Jorge Adorno/Courtesy Reuters). The Copa Libertadores trophy is seen during the draw for the 2013 edition of the competition at the South American Football Confederation headquarters (Jorge Adorno/Courtesy Reuters).

Bob McMahon and I typically use our weekly podcast to discuss major foreign policy issues likely to be in the news in the coming week. In honor of the approaching New Year, we decided to change things up and examine the issues likely to dominate world politics in 2013. We discussed a sluggish global economy; the fiscal crisis in the United States; power struggles in the Middle East; the withdrawal of NATO forces from Afghanistan; sovereignty disputes in east Asia; and the battle over Internet freedom. Paul Stares, director of CFR’s Center for Preventive Action (CPA), joined our conversation to talk about CPA’s newly released Preventive Priorities Survey, which assesses the likelihood and consequences of potential conflicts in 2013. Read more »

Americans Oppose Intervention in Syria

by James M. Lindsay
A damaged area of Syria is pictured after a car bomb near Damascus on December 13 (SANA/Courtesy Reuters). A damaged area of Syria is pictured after a car bomb near Damascus on December 13 (SANA/Courtesy Reuters).

The Pew Research Center is out with a new poll today on U.S. public attitudes toward Syria. The results are unambiguous: Americans want nothing to do with the civil war that has now killed almost 40,000 Syrians. More than six-in-ten respondents (63 percent) say that the United States does not have a responsibility to do something to end the fighting in Syria. A slightly higher number (65 percent) opposes even arming rebel groups in Syria. Read more »

The World Next Week: Japan Elects a Parliament; South Korea Chooses a President, Egypt Decides on a Constitution, and the U.S. Electoral College Votes

by James M. Lindsay
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) leader Shinzo Abe shows a leaflet from the party's campaign during a news conference in Tokyo (Kyodo/ Courtesy Reuters). Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) leader Shinzo Abe shows a leaflet from the party's campaign during a news conference in Tokyo (Kyodo/ Courtesy Reuters).

The World Next Week podcast is up. Bob McMahon and I discussed Japan’s parliamentary elections; South Korea’s presidential election; Egypt’s constitutional referendum; and the Electoral College vote for the U.S. president and vice president. Read more »

An Embrace and a Slap: Congress Votes to Normalize Trade With Russia—and Slap It on the Wrist

by Guest Blogger for James M. Lindsay
Russian president Vladimir Putin shakes hands with U.S. president Barack Obama during the G20 summit in June 2012 (Jason Reed/Courtesy Reuters). Russian president Vladimir Putin shakes hands with U.S. president Barack Obama during the G20 summit in June 2012 (Jason Reed/Courtesy Reuters).

The U.S. Senate today approved a bill to normalize trade relations with Russia. The House voted overwhelmingly for it last month, and President Obama is expected to sign it into law. The move will allow U.S. companies to benefit from Russia’s recent entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO). However, the bill also includes a provision that penalizes Russian human rights violators—a move that infuriates Moscow, which has promised to strike back. I asked my colleague Anya Schmemann, who follows Russian issues, to explain the double-edged bill. Here’s what she had to say: Read more »