“Thomas Aquinas once said, ‘if the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would leave it in port forever.’ This more than anything seems to represent the dominant mindset among America’s foreign policy elite. While Aquinas was a wise and quotable man, I find the concept of viewing American foreign policy as a ship with limits meant to be tested–even if it destroys the ship–to be very frightening (and irresponsible). Rather than captaining a ship in dangerous waters, I prefer to look at foreign policy as a medical doctor looks at healing a patient. The first duty of a medical doctor is to uphold the Hippocratic oath. That oath, which all doctors are required to swear fealty to, simply states, ‘First, do no harm.’ American foreign policy practitioners need to live by the Hippocratic oath as well. Imagine what the world would look like toady if the emergency men who populated the George W. Bush Administration lived according to the Hippocratic oath.”
“Since the United States has reaffirmed its strength in Putin’s eyes, the White House should pivot and offer Putin a gracious way of saving face with his people. If the Trump Administration fails to reach out and build off its displays of strength, then all of this posturing will have been worthless, and we might have helped formalize a Sino-Russian entente cordiale.”
“However, much like how the British and French Empires of old managed to keep relative peace and prosperity between their two countries, the United States and Russia must learn to balance each other peacefully–and work together more often and more amicably.”
Russian Foreign Policy is more than its relations with the West. In my most recent lecture at the Institute of World Politics, I elaborate how Putin views the world and how the United States should handle its relations with Russia (hint: not the way that we’ve been handling them).
“Putin is looking for a deal. He wants to re-establish a modicum of stability between the West and Russia. He needs help developing his energy sources in the Far East (and he’s not foolish enough to want the Chinese to take the lead—unless he’s left with no choice, as he currently is).”
“The Putin Regime is clearly frightened by the political trends working against it. The creation of the Russian National Guard forces is but the most prevalent example of how fearful the regime is. Given the demographic shifts in the country; the fact that most Russians are becoming increasingly isolated away from Russian society; the economic damage the U.S.-backed sanctions have done to Russia (and to their European trading partners), the Putin Regime is about to be put through its most difficult test.”
National security expert, Brandon J. Weichert, discusses U.S. foreign policy in the Mideast.
President Trump should disinvite all press from his high-level meetings, or selectively exclude the Western media outlets that he dislikes. It’s bad form to exclude everyone but the Russian state-owned press.
The defeat of the Islamic State will create several knock-on effects in the Middle East. Namely, the Kurds will likely renew calls for their independence. The U.S. should support these claims.
The European Union is collapsing. Nationalism and regionalism are consuming the supranational entity. Between the refugee crisis and Russia’s aggressions, the EU simply cannot hold together. Therefore, the U.S. must take a new approach to Europe.