Foreign Policy Blogs

Archive by Author

Talking ‘Smart Power’ With Admiral Stavridis

Talking ‘Smart Power’ With Admiral Stavridis

Retired Admiral James Stavridis talks “smart power,” Latin America, and Snowden With one-liners like, “We are excellent at launching Tomahawk missiles; we need to get better at launching ideas,” it is not hard to appreciate why The New York Times labeled recently retired Admiral James Stavridis a “Renaissance admiral.” Labels like “innovator” and “thought leader” may be overused, […]

read more

Super Angry Geeks Versus “The Man”

Super Angry Geeks Versus “The Man”

“I will be satisfied if the federation of secret law, unequal pardon….that rule the world that I love are revealed even for an instant.” – Edward Snowden In the 1983 American science-fiction film “War Games” star Matthew Broderick played a teenage internet hacker who unwittingly accesses a U.S. military supercomputer programmed to predict possible outcomes […]

read more

Cuba’s Little Bird Flies Free

Cuba’s Little Bird Flies Free

Freedom is fundamentally the possibility of standing on a street corner and shouting “There is no freedom here!” — Yoani Sanchez Cuban dissident Yoani Sanchez is fond of comparing Cubans to little birds in a cage – captives who are given free education, food, and water but who are still not free. Thanks to a […]

read more

Terrorism: Time For “Killer Drones” To Go Global

Terrorism: Time For “Killer Drones” To Go Global

  “When force is necessary, we will continue to do so in a way that reflects our values and strengthens our legitimacy, and we will seek broad international support, working with such institutions as NATO and the U.N. Security Council.”  — President Obama (2010 National Security Strategy)  Is it time for the international community to […]

read more

Chavez: Latin America’s Most Successful Failure

Chavez: Latin America’s Most Successful Failure

“A state too expensive in itself, or by virtue of its dependencies, ultimately falls into decay; its free government is transformed into a tyranny; it disregards the principles which it should preserve, and finally degenerates into despotism.” — Simon Bolivar Regrettably, the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez  did not heed the sage words of his […]

read more

Secretary Kerry Needs to Bring His “A” Game

Secretary Kerry Needs to Bring His “A” Game

“We would accomplish many more things if we did not think of them as impossible” — Vince Lombardi Will Secretary of State Kerry prove to be a master of the foreign relations game by overcoming the seemingly impossible? Or will he have a hard time finding his footing on the slippery geopolitical pitch and achieve […]

read more

How Secretary Clinton Got It All Wrong

How Secretary Clinton Got It All Wrong

  “To work with all our heart and all of our might to make sure that America is secure, that our interests are promoted and our values are respected.” –  Former Secretary of State Clinton If only former Secretary of State Clinton had remained true to the words she uttered so many times during her […]

read more

“Individual” or “National” Security — You decide!

“Individual” or “National” Security — You decide!

“Should the proper referent for security be the individual not the state?”  In the wake of the recent Newtown massacre that claimed the lives of 26 innocents, Americans have begun to understand that the boogieman they need to fear most lives amongst them and not in a cave in Afghanistan. According to a recent U.N. study, […]

read more

Excuse Me Mr. President…

Excuse Me Mr. President…

“The spirit of this country is totally adverse to a large military force.” — Thomas Jefferson  Dear President Obama, Congratulations on winning your second term in office. I wish you the best as you work with your team, and the Congress, to chart a course to strengthen our economic and national security in the years […]

read more

The Press Marches In Lockstep For War, Again!

The Press Marches In Lockstep For War, Again!

“The public sees no reason to get involved in foreign adventures. So you have to whip them up. And to whip them up you have to frighten them.” – Noam Chomsky So here we go again. Nine years after the invasion of Iraq, the mainstream press marches in step to the melodies of our Pied […]

read more

Institutions And New World “Netizens”: Act 1

Institutions And New World “Netizens”: Act 1

“First They Ignore You — Then They Ridicule You — Then They Fight You — Then You Win” Mahandas Gandhi Will technology fundamentally change the relationship between the nation state and citizens? Are hyper-connected citizens a threat to or opportunity for government? These are the kinds of questions that the political ruling class across the […]

read more

The Rise of “Human” Security

The Rise of “Human” Security

  “Human Security Is The Primary Purpose Of Organizing A State In The Beginning.” — Surin Pitsuwan, ASEAN In the wake of the Arab Spring, and in light of the ongoing global economic disorder, world leaders would be well advised to examine their understanding of national security. Recent events paint a picture of national leaders […]

read more

International Development: Shifting Our Focus From iGenius to eDevelopment

International Development: Shifting Our Focus From iGenius to eDevelopment

“Humanity is acquiring all the right technology for all the wrong reasons” ~ R. Buckminster Fuller Much has been made about how the late technology giant Steve Job “changed our lives”. The Discovery Channel, not to be outdone by all the media hoopla surrounding his death, will air a one-hour documentary on Sunday 30 October […]

read more

Listening To A Dead Hawk

Listening To A Dead Hawk

 “The only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.”  Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel One hundred years hence, when historians study the factors that led to the economic decline of the United States, it is likely that they will mark the first week of August, 2011 as a crisp break in […]

read more

We’ve Lost More Than Our ‘AAA’ Rating

We’ve Lost More Than Our ‘AAA’ Rating

So here we are my fellow Americans, starting a fresh week after learning some pretty dark news. For starters, we learned that the credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s on Friday downgraded the credit rating of the United States, stripping us of our gold medal and replacing it with a tarnished silver pennant. Yes, we […]

read more

About the Author

Oliver Barrett
Oliver Barrett

Oliver Leighton-Barrett is a multi-lingual researcher and a decorated retired military officer specializing in the inter-play between fragile states and national security matters. A former U.S. Marine, and Naval aviator, Oliver is a veteran of several notable U.S. military operations, to include: Operation Restore Hope (Somalia); and Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan and Philippines). His functional areas of focus include: U.S. Diplomacy; U.S. Defense; and Climate Change. His geographic areas of focus include: Latin America and the Caribbean and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

americasdiplomats_socialmediaasset

Blog Authors

FPA Administrator