Foreign Policy Blogs

Tag Archives: US foreign policy

GailForce: The Threat of Cyberwar Is Not Hype

GailForce:  The Threat of Cyberwar Is Not Hype

In the March/April 2012 issue of Foreign Policy Magazine, Thomas Rid wrote an article called Think Again:  Cyberwar.  The subtitle was:  Don’t Fear the Digital Bogeyman Virtual Conflict is Still More Hype Than Reality.  He states his premise up front: “Time for a reality check:  Cyberwar is still more hype than hazard. Consider the definition […]

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A new ‘rough patch’ in US-South Africa relations?

A new ‘rough patch’ in US-South Africa relations?

The US-South Africa bilateral relationship over the past eighteen months has been a diplomatic minefield. Issues include everything from military equipment and nuclear energy/weapons to oil, communication companies and the global north versus the global south. The most recent, and the most serious issue regarding US-SA relations is Iran. According to a press release sent […]

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The Summit of the Americas 2012: Agree to Disagree on a New Open Drug Economy

The Summit of the Americas 2012: Agree to Disagree on a New Open Drug Economy

Three main issues surrounded this year’s Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia this past weekend. For the most part, those issues created a division between the Americans and Canadians poised against most of Latin America with the exception of the prostitution scandal that will likely be more of an issue between Obama and the […]

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Baku Protests Foreign Policy’s Assertion of Airbase Access for Israel

Baku Protests Foreign Policy’s Assertion of Airbase Access for Israel

It’s just so hard to launch an international bash these days. Everyone’s a critic. Just ask Azerbaijan. Preparations for Eurovision, one of Europe’s biggest song contests to be held in May in Baku, are regularly sidetracked either by criticism of the country dismal human rights record, or allegations of the country’s silent involvement in Iran-Israeli […]

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The War on Iran: Necessity or Illusion?

The War on Iran: Necessity or Illusion?

Wide speculations about the possibility of military confrontation with Iran and Israel’s military intentions seem to be the order of the day. The debate on Iran has now found its way from mainstream media to leading academic institutions. Earlier this week at the University of Toronto a panel of experts discussed the increasing tensions between […]

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U.S. Foreign Policy and The Arab Spring

U.S. Foreign Policy and The Arab Spring

This article, appeared on the Political Reflections Magazine, vol.3, n.2, is the second part of my review of FPA’s Great Decisions episode on the Arab Spring: The first part, providing a general overview of the debate can be found here. ********************************** As the uncertainty of the Arab Spring continues, the debate on the future of […]

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Plot to Assassinate Saudi Ambassador or Murder-for-Hire Sting….

Plot to Assassinate Saudi Ambassador or Murder-for-Hire Sting….

It’s called a ‘murder-for-hire’ sting, a standard law enforcement ploy designed to help the criminal find the very worst in his nature and act on it. But sting operations come with their own risks as well as rewards—and attorneys know that ‘entrapment’ can be a strong defense. . .

Informants are like sharks, scouring the underworld for opportunities and targets the feds can use as springboards to career-making cases. It’s the informant’s job to find two sticks (agent and opportunity), to rub them together vigorously, and to blow gently on the sparks of criminal enterprise.

Think about this as well….the ‘downpayment’ for the ‘hit,’ the100k wired to the US undercover bank account is enough to trigger a case for conspiracy, but it still doesn’t prove that the Iranian government was driving the bus. To do that, US authorities must establish a link between the owner of the account in the UAE — or the owner/s of an account held by an international financial institution with correspondent branches/banks around the world — and the government of Iran.

This is a critical point–one that could defuse the Obama Administration’s claim that ‘senior officials at the highest levels of the Iranian government’ were tied to the assassination plot and challenge the call of senior US officials for alterations to current foreign policy, in the US and abroad, toward Iran. If US authorities cannot prove that this was something more than a plot formulated by a small group of non-state actors, the President, the Secretary of State, DEA and the FBI have some explaining to do. . .

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Iran’s Foreign Policy vis-à-vis Arab Uprisings

Iran’s Foreign Policy  vis-à-vis Arab Uprisings

The following is a contributing piece from guest writer Ladan Yazdian. Ms. Yazdian is a foreign affairs and Middle East specialist. She holds a BA and an MA in political science. She is currently a Ph.D. student at Virginia Tech, working on global security, foreign policy, international relations, and human rights. In the wake of […]

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Congress takes aim at Holder, ATF, Mexico

Congress takes aim at Holder, ATF, Mexico

The House Oversight Committee calls ATF’s Fast and Furious a ‘failed and reckless operation,’ but was it? If you look at it from Calderon’s perspective, or from the perspective of administration officials–including Obama, Holder, and senior ATF executives–who favor stronger gun legislation, Fast and Furious was a huge success….

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Obama's Middle East speech and Turkish foreign policy

Not one single word in Obama’s Middle East speech included or even made a remote reference to Turkey. This, from Turkey’s perspective, was the most important part of yesterday’s policy position statement. In traditional Turkish collective memory, Middle East has been a realm of ‘problem’, which Turkey had to stay away from; some of those […]

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US, India and Pakistan aid

In his budget proposal for 2012, President Obama has proposed $3.1 billion in aid to Pakistan. The aid is spread across various parts and will be provided partly under the five year Kerry-Lugar-Berman initiative and Oversees Contingency Operations (OCO). This proposal comes even as the two countries stand-off over the Raymond Davis affair and the […]

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WikiLeaks Grave Attack on US Foreign Policy

WikiLeaks Grave Attack on US Foreign Policy

A serious trust has been breached on two levels. First, by WikiLeaks so that nary a foreign contact will wish ever to speak, or at least speak with candor, to even the lowliest Foreign Service personnel. But second, also by the notion, and the threat to life and limb, that we use our Foreign Service personnel as low-cost spies.

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Reflections on Obama's India visit

Reflections on Obama's India visit

As expected, Obama’s maiden visit to India this weekend has been a success. President Obama struck all the right notes, and the First Lady charmed India as she danced with children. The highlight of the visit was Obama’s address to the joint session of the Indian Parliament on Monday where he endorsed India’s permanent membership […]

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Taking up the fight against military aid to Pakistan

Just days before President Obama begins his India visit, the U.S.-Pakistan strategic dialogue is underway in Washington D.C. The talks would focus on the “strategic” relationship between the two countries, a euphemism for more aid money to Pakistan to fight extremists within its borders and help out the U.S. in Afghanistan. Even with almost no […]

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Pakistan's Failure

The strangely bizarre and comical launch of Musharraf’s so called Muslim League (or whatever name he is using) forced me to examine Pakistan. And, believe me, this time; I really looked hard not only at today’s Pakistan but also at its short, but awfully tumultuous history. And, it is extremely distressing to realize that nothing, […]

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