Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Europe and the US have failed in Syria

By Kristin Helberg

After almost nine years of civil war, the crisis in and around Syria has not been resolved. Nonetheless, it is clear who the winners and losers in the conflict are. Among the winners are the Syrian regime, Russia, Iran and even Turkey, to a certain extent. These countries have always known what they wanted, have proven ready to do anything to get what they want, and have been able to adapt their strategies to the dynamics of the war. Among the losers are the United States and Europe, who championed the desires of Syrians citizens for a life of freedom and dignity but did so in a half-hearted manner and without any tangible plan.

As this gap between its words …

We must re-address arms control

We must re-address arms control
By Theo Sommer

When the history of these times is written, it may well be that the headlines of the day – Iraq and the controversies it has aroused – will pale in comparison to other international upheavals of our period. The center of gravity of world affairs is moving to the Pacific, and almost all major actors …

Europeans are no longer evading the security question

By Wolfgang Ischinger

What are Europeans willing and able to do in order to secure their wider neighborhood? This question is by no means new. But with instability growing and the US footprint shrinking in Europe’s southern periphery, the question regularly returns – and each time with greater force.

Encouragingly, it looks as if Europeans are no longer …

The West and the search for its future

The West and the search for its future
By Peter Koepf and Lutz Lichtenberger

There was a time when it appeared that history was coming to an end and the future was set to begin. The democratic and capitalist West had brought communism and the command economies of the East to their knees, not least by dint of an arms race the Soviet Union ultimately couldn’t keep up with. …

Germany can make a difference in an unsteady world

By Heiko Maas

This year’s Munich Security Report diagnoses the world with a condition it calls “Westlessness,” with symptoms that include signs of Western paralysis amid a loss of global significance. Many political observers share similar concerns. While our countries and societies increasingly question their own norms and values, the argument goes, we are losing the power and …

Beyond trade: the confrontation between the US and China

Beyond trade: the confrontation between the US and China
By Graham T. Allison Jr.

Could China and the US be stumbling down the path Germany and the United Kingdom took at the beginning of the last century? The possibility will strike many readers as inconceivable. But we should remember that when we say something is “inconceivable,” this is a claim not about what is possible in the world, but …

The US and Europe hold a hand that’s too good to fold

By Joseph S. Nye, JR.

With the end of the Cold War, many believed the West had prevailed. In his 1992 book The End of History and the Last Man, Francis Fukuyama wrote that humanity had reached “the end-point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government.” A few years …

America, China and the complexity of their rivalry

By Volker Perthes

The rivalry between the United States and China has become a guiding paradigm of international relations, shaping strategic debates, but also real political, military and economic dynamics. This is not to say that competition between Washington and Beijing – or even great-power rivalries in general – determines all other international problems and conflicts. However, Sino-American …

Brexit is a challenge shared by the UK, the EU and the US

By Nicholas Burns

Global leaders congregating at the annual Munich Security Conference this year must wrestle with a multitude of crises. The coronavirus pandemic is imperiling people in every region of the world and may threaten global economic growth and stability. The Middle East has been upended by an uneasy US-Iran truce after the attack on Qassim Soleimani. …

America’s retreat: A world without a keeper

By Herfried Münkler

Will the American century indeed give way to the Chinese century? While this may be the case in terms of industrial production, it will be some time before China can dominate the international order and become the actor dominating the globe. At the moment, the US commands the economic potency and the military might to …

Europe must deliver on the issues people care about

By Mark Leonard

The more European leaders talk about developing a “geopolitical commission,” the further they are from getting there. In the months since Ursula von der Leyen stated this as her goal, actors within each of the EU pillars of decision-making seem to have taken a step backward.

The Iran nuclear deal, which was already in intensive …

Europe misses opportunities to gain relevance

Europe misses opportunities to gain relevance
By Katja Gloger

Let’s face it: Germany and Europe may one day be thankful for Donald Trump. After all, his destructive and cynical unpredictability is finally forcing them to sufficiently appreciate their responsibility for foreign and security policy in an ever more fragile world.

Six years ago, German President Joachim Gauck attempted to give direction to his country’s …

NATO and the EU are muscling up

By Heinrich Brauss

Europe and the US face unprecedented challenges and threats. To the east, Russia’s aggressive actions aim to destabilize and intimidate neighbors and undermine NATO and the EU. To the south, continuing crises and violence across North Africa and the Middle East (MENA) have fueled terrorism and mass migration that are affecting Europe’s stability. Russia’s operations …

For an active EU policy towards Eastern Europe

For an active EU policy towards Eastern Europe
By Dirk Wiese and Reinhard Krumm

The future looked brighter 30 years ago. In 1990, the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe gave its brand-new Charter of Paris the title “For a New Europe.” The 30-page document began with the words: “A new era of Democracy, Peace and Unity.”

Much progress has been made in Europe since then. The Central …

Russia is benefiting from its new confrontation with the West

Russia is benefiting from its new confrontation with the West
By Ian Bremmer

In the nearly three decades since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia’s relationship with the West has undergone a dramatic transformation – from establishing economic ties the 1990s to being partners in the wake of 9/11 to once again being adversaries in the post-Bush era. There’s plenty of blame to go around, not least …