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Sputnik Moment for U.S. After China Moon Landing?

Sputnik Moment for U.S. After China Moon Landing?

When the Soviet Union launched the Sputnik satellite during the Cold War it was a shocking wake-up call for the U.S., alarming both policy-makers and the public and sparking what came to be known and the Space Race. Of course, the U.S. went on to win that particular race, still having the distinction of being […]

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U.S. Owes Debt of Honor

U.S. Owes Debt of  Honor

How well the U.S. can pay our debts has been in the news lately. There’s the government shutdown, which resulted in the delay of death benefits to families of fallen soldiers, and of course, the upcoming vote on raising the U.S. debt-limit. The issue of the death benefits was particularly emotional and struck a nerve […]

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Strike on Syria: What Kind of World?

Strike on Syria: What Kind of World?

President Woodrow Wilson has long fascinated me. He is one of those presidents that is a giant in history, but few people know much about him. Steven Spielberg has never made a movie about him, you don’t hear his name referenced on the Sunday talk shows, and he seems entirely missing from pop-culture. And yet […]

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Strike on Syria: Dissenting Voices

Strike on Syria: Dissenting Voices

In the aftermath of the 2003 invasion of Iraq the American mainstream news media underwent a period of intense introspection (and by that I mean brief and superficial reflection) about how little critical reporting and analysis they offered in the run-up to the war. Is there a danger that the news media will once again […]

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The Guns of August Redux

The Guns of August Redux

The classic book The Guns of August is not exactly standard summertime beach reading material. It is, however, a book I like to turn to every once in a while to remind me of the role of folly in international affairs. In the book, author Barbara Tuchman studiously examines the role of misconception, misperception and […]

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U.S. Still Lost in Space

U.S. Still Lost in Space

China’s manned space program scored a major advance this week as they launched three astronauts to an orbiting space lab for a brief stay in orbit. It may surprise many Americans that not only does China have a manned space program but they have a small space station with plans to build a larger one […]

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U.S. Supports Syrian Online Resistance

U.S. Supports Syrian Online Resistance

The internet went dark in Syria last week. Although media reports blamed the outage on a fault in optical fiber cables many in the tech community were skeptical. After all, it’s not the first time Syria shut down the internet in an attempt to prevent protestors from using social media to coordinate and share with […]

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Budget Cuts Diminish U.S. Role in the World

Budget Cuts Diminish U.S. Role in the World

Like many Americans, I’ve been watching the budget impasse with a mix of consternation and disgust. It seems like our politicians are playing a game of chicken with our country’s welfare hanging in the balance. Of course, the most talked about implication of the so-called sequester is the certain impact it will have on the […]

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Looking Forward to SOTU 2013

Looking Forward to SOTU 2013

I’m looking forward to the State of the Union address tomorrow night; it promises to mark the back-to-business start of Obama’s second term and the official proclamation of his agenda. While I would understand if the bulk of the speech is taken up with matters of domestic policy, I do hope to get a few […]

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Is Liberty Losing Her Voice?

Is Liberty Losing Her Voice?

The history of Radio Liberty is the stuff of Cold War legend: dissidents huddled around a contraband radio in some dimly lit room in a cold and dreary gulag, hoping desperately to hear that the world recognized their suffering and that the promise of liberty was still within reach. Funded by the U.S. over decades, […]

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U.S. Counters Rising Tide of Internet Censorship

U.S. Counters Rising Tide of Internet Censorship

As rebel forces advance in Syria’s north and east and prepare to contest regime forces for control of Damascus, the internet went dark in Syria last week. The strategic importance of cutting communication lines is obvious and it suggests a certain desperation on the part of Assad’s government. While much of the discussion about U.S. […]

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Another Look At Captain America

Another Look At Captain America

  I received an email from a publisher today, and I was tempted to quickly skim it and move on. Like many of you, I get far more email than I can reasonably deal with. This e-mail, however, was apropos of a blog post I wrote over the summer of 2011 about the Captain America […]

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Ready for the Foreign Policy Debate?

Ready for the Foreign Policy Debate?

  I’m looking forward to the upcoming presidential debate on foreign policy. This will be the final debate before election day and will be held in Florida on Monday night at 9pm ET and hosted by Bob Schieffer of CBS News. According to the  Commission on Presidential Debates we can expect the debate to cover […]

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Survey: U.S. Still A Force for Good

Survey: U.S. Still A Force for Good

  This is a quick follow up to my last post and it continues the theme of foreign policy as a topic in the U.S. presidential election. We have previously noted that there is a perception that this election will focus primarily on economic issues (jobs!) and domestic policy (health care) with foreign policy a […]

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Foreign Policy in the Partisan Age

Foreign Policy in the Partisan Age

    Foreign policy has come roaring back into a presidential campaign that pundits said would be devoted almost exclusively to economic issues. Since the Foreign Policy Association is a non-partisan group I will shy away from partisan spin, but there’s no denying the appeal of the renewed focus on foreign policy, and I’m certain […]

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About the Author

Joel Davis
Joel Davis

Joel Davis is the Director of Online Services at the International Studies Association in Tucson, Arizona. He is a graduate of the University of Arizona, where he received his B.A. in Political Science and Master's degree in International Relations. He has lived in the UK, Italy and Eritrea, and his travels have taken him to Canada, Brazil, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, and Greece.

Follow U.S. Role on Twitter: @FPAUSRole
Follow Joel on Twitter: @joeladavis

Areas of Focus:
State Department; Diplomacy; US Aid; and Alliances.

Contact Joel by e-mail at [email protected]

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