January/February 2005

January/February 2005
84, 1

Essays

Essay
John Lewis Gaddis

In his first four years, George W. Bush presided over the most sweeping redesign of U.S. strategy since the days of F.D.R. Over the next four, his basic direction should remain the same: restoring security in a more dangerous world. Some midcourse corrections, however, are overdue. Washington should remember the art of speaking softly and the need for international legitimacy.

Essay
James Dobbins

By losing the trust of the Iraqi people, the Bush administration has already lost the war. Moderate Iraqis can still win it, but only if they wean themselves from Washington and get support from elsewhere. To help them, the United States should reduce and ultimately eliminate its military presence, train Iraqis to beat the insurgency on their own, and rally Iran and European allies to the cause.

Essay
Edward N. Luttwak

The best strategy for the United States now in Iraq is disengagement. In a reversal of the usual sequence, the U.S. hand will be strengthened by withdrawal, and Washington might actually be able to lay the groundwork for a reasonably stable Iraq. Why? Because geography ensures that all other parties are far more exposed to the dangers of an anarchical Iraq than is the United States itself.

Essay
Jeffrey E. Garten

Improving U.S. foreign economic policy after four years of neglect will require addressing a series of problems that, if left to fester, will have grave consequences for U.S. domestic interests and U.S. foreign policy as a whole. Above all, the second Bush administration must recognize that geopolitics and geoeconomics are deeply intertwined and must be managed accordingly.

Essay
John Deutch

The nuclear threat has been transformed since the end of the Cold War, but Washington's nuclear posture has not changed to meet it. The United States should scale back its arsenal while allowing limited nuclear tests, shaping its nuclear force to bolster nonproliferation without undermining deterrence.

Essay
Dennis Ross

The Middle East challenges facing Washington today have never been greater--but there remains a chance for peace. To secure it, the United States must stick with Iraq, pressure Iran into giving up its nukes, foster a moderate Palestinian leadership, and support Muslim reformers. Success in the region has never been more important.

Essay
Francis Fukuyama

Washington's system of Asian alliances may have worked during the Cold War, but it ignores today's political reality. Although the six-party talks now underway on North Korea's nukes were born of necessity, their format should be made permanent, so the White House can help reshape Asian diplomacy.

Essay
William Drozdiak

To repair the damaged transatlantic alliance, the second Bush administration must rediscover the values of Republican internationalism. Fortunately, the recent enlargement of NATO and the EU gives Washington a great chance to buttress the allies' economic ties, security strategy, and foreign policy.

Essay
Selig S. Harrison

Two years ago, Washington accused Pyongyang of running a secret nuclear weapons program. But how much evidence was there to back up the charge? A review of the facts shows that the Bush administration misrepresented and distorted the data--while ignoring the one real threat North Korea actually poses.

Essay
Edward P. Joseph

Since Slobodan Milosevic was sent to The Hague two years ago, the former Yugoslavia has dropped off the international radar. But the Balkans are far from secure: corruption runs rampant, economies are flat, and ethnic hatred continues to simmer. Worst of all, Kosovo remains a flashpoint that could re-ignite the region.

Essay
Scott Straus

As western Sudan continues to suffer, much international attention has focused on whether to call what is happening there "genocide." Yet once the term was invoked, it did not trigger outside intervention. Terminology turns out to matter far less than was expected. And once more, the world has dithered while people die.

Essay
Stuart Eizenstat, John Edward Porter, and Jeremy Weinstein

The turmoil caused by weak and failing states gravely threatens U.S. security, yet Washington is doing little to respond. The United States needs a new, comprehensive development strategy combining crisis prevention, rapid response, centralized decision-making, and international cooperation.

Reviews & Responses

Review Essay
Mahmood Mamdani

Thinking of modern jihad as simply a cultural extension of Islam is a common, and unfortunate, mistake. Two new books by Gilles Kepel and Olivier Roy offer better historical and sociological explanations, but they are only a start.

Review Essay
Jon B. Wolfsthal

Renewed anxiety over a nuclear attack has prompted three new books on the threat and how to confront it. On one key point they all agree: the need to ensure that "peaceful" nuclear programs do not serve as a guise for less-than-peaceful intentions.

Review Essay
Salman Ahmed

Three new studies of the international community's attempts at postwar state reconstruction in the 1990s offer valuable lessons about how best to handle the job, but they also overgeneralize and miss critical differences among their cases.

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