Unlike other movements, the rallies across the United States have no distinct constituency, put forward few policy proposals, and have a shifting configuration of supporters. They are something new. These are “we are here” protests.
China is hardly the first great power to make authoritarian development look attractive. As Jonathan Steinberg’s new biography of Bismarck shows, Wilhelmine Germany did it with ease. But can even successful nondemocratic political systems thrive and evolve peacefully over the long run? The answer depends on whether authoritarian elites can tolerate sharing power.
Like an odorless gas, economic inequality pervades every corner of the United States and saps the strength of its democracy. Over the past three decades, Washington has consistently favored the rich — and the more wealth accumulates in a few hands at the top, the more influence and favor the rich acquire, making it easier for them and their political allies to cast off restraint without paying a social price.
Increasing inequality in the United States has long been attributed to unstoppable market forces. In fact, as Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson show, it is the direct result of congressional policies that have consciously — and sometimes inadvertently — skewed the playing field toward the rich.
Embroiled in violence and famine, Somalia is a perennially failed state. The expert articles found here offer insight and open the discussion on what actions can be taken to address the multitude of challenges that Somalia faces.
In the Foreign Affairs Snapshot: “Engage the Players on the Ground,” Bronwyn Bruton and J. Peter Pham make the claim that the void left by the radical group al Shabaab should be filled by an array of actors — governmental entities, regional authorities, clans, and civil society organizations – who can help.
In a letter from Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki entitled “Africa Could be Opening a New Chapter,” the President explains how to move East Africa forward by arguing that, despite the conflict and famine ravaging Somalia, there is an opportunity for East Africa to escape a regional mess.
In Walter Clarke and Jeffrey Herbst's essay “The Lessons of Somalia,” the pair use the Somali intervention of 1993 as a peacekeeping lesson for helping to rebuild failed states. In it, they argue that “no large intervention, military or humanitarian, can remain neutral or assuredly brief in a strife-torn failed state. Nation-building, the rebuilding of a state’s basic civil institutions, is required in fashioning a self-sustaining body politic out of anarchy. In the future, the United States, the United Nations, and other intervenors should be able to declare a state “bankrupt” and go in to restore civic order and foster reconciliation.” With Somalia now widely considered to be the world’s most failed state, this article is as relevant today as the day it was written.
This interactive presentation traces Iran’s history, its evolution as an Islamic republic, and the controversial nuclear program. It also offers an expert overview of the main policy options for dealing with Iran.
Iran’s ambitions as a regional power, its links to groups considered terrorist organizations, and tensions within the Iranian regime pose a range of challenges to its neighbors and the world. Drawing on the insights of more than twenty-five leading analysts, government officials, and journalists, this interactive guide explores these challenges and offers a range of expert opinions on the policy options for addressing them. The guide also uses multimedia elements to trace the country’s history, examine its oil-driven economy, and survey its controversial nuclear program.
This guide is organized into seven chapters including a cinematic overview, photo timelines, followed by several chapters dedicated to overviews of certain aspects of Iran today, video discussions of the various policy options for dealing with the challenges posed by Iran, and lastly—a staple in every Crisis Guide—a thorough list of readings, primary source documents, and other resources for those looking to pursue further research.