Hillary Clinton has repeatedly sought to distinguish herself from Donald Trump by characterizing herself as a strong defender of U.S. interests, values, and allies in relations with Russia. Secretary Clinton correctly assesses Putin as a “bully,” the stakes involved in regions of U.S.-Russian tension like Syria and Ukraine, and the importance of America and its allies jointly confronting him. However, Clinton’s rhetoric regarding Putin and Russia is inconsistent with her tenure as Secretary of State. The “reset” in U.S.-Russian relations over which Clinton presided as Secretary of State wrought significant and lasting damage to U.S. strategic interests and had a particularly destructive effect on our Central and Eastern European allies, contributing to a crisis of deterrence in Europe. If she is elected president, we hope Secretary Clinton adheres to the spirit of her recent comments, moves to substantially strengthen U.S. alliances in Europe, and avoids the old patterns that she set in U.S.-Russian relations as Secretary of State.
The United Kingdom will vote on June 23 in a yes-no referendum on whether to leave the European Union (Brexit). A case can be made for Brexit based on arguments about government, economics, law, and cultural identity. There are also many strong arguments for remaining in the EU, making this vote neither clear nor easy. This backgrounder fleshes out the full array of arguments for the Leave (pro-Brexit) and Remain (anti-Brexit) campaigns as each side views them from its own perspective. The paper concludes with a set of recommendations as to how the U.S. should view the debate in light of its own interests.
The Western world is witnessing the largest migration of peoples since World War II. The crisis is a result of many factors, an important one being a less active United States in world affairs and an increasing reluctance by the U.S. to uphold the global rules-based order set up after World War II. To deal with this crisis, it is necessary to identify the underlying security issues driving people from their homes and restore a regulated system to address the arriving migrants. This backgrounder explores how the crisis came about and concludes with recommendations for policymakers.