Foreign Policy Blogs

The FPA’s Must Reads (November 2 – November 8)


Vladimir Putin, nicknamed “Pootie Poot” by George W. Bush, demonstrates his first car, a Zaporozhets, to the U.S. President. (E. Draper/White House)

The Seduction of George W. Bush
By Peter Baker
Foreign Policy

Peter Baker tells the intimate story of how Bush and Putin’s personal relationship shaped American foreign policy toward Russia. This excerpt from Baker’s new book is a rich collection of revealing anecdotes ranging from Putin’s suggestion that Bush amend the constitution to accommodate a third term to Bush’s frustrated characterization of Putin as an eighth grader who doesn’t know his facts.

The A-Team Killings
By Matthieu Aikins
Rolling Stone

Aikins examines how the lives of Afghan villagers have been caught in U.S. war efforts and how this further muddies relations with the Afghan government. This piece offers interviews with the villagers of the Nerkh district of Afghanistan, where the bodies of ten missing Afghan residents were found last Spring near an American Special Forces base.

New Players on the World Stage: Chinese Provinces and Indian States
By William Antholis

Although they have no U.S. consulates, the regional provinces and states of China and India today have both the population and economic power of major countries. Antholis makes a compelling argument that the U.S. should shift its attention to understanding these countries from within.

No Morsel Too Miniscule for All-Consuming N.S.A.
By Scott Shane
New York Times

From its weekly internal brag notes about scoops to its eavesdropping on friends and foes alike, the National Security Agency is now caught in a not-so-private debate about its legitimacy and purpose both in domestic politics and international relations.

Bridge to Somewhere
By Jose W. Fernandez
Foreign Affairs

Market-oriented countries with a growing middle class are on the rise and need a modernized infrastructure to sustain their growth. Fernandez shows how important it is for the United States to direct its attention toward infrastructure investment.


Message to Congress: No More Starships Please
Transatlantic Snooping: National versus Transatlantic Interests
Time: The Overlooked Arctic Resource
New Trends in Free Trade Agreements: Canada, the EU and the BRICS
China, Africa, and South African Regional Influence