President Obama has nominated two representatives who will lead US trade talks over the next two years: Michael Froman, former White House economic aide as U.S. Trade Representative and Penny Pritzker, Hyatt scion and Chicago fund raiser as the new Secretary of Commerce. Together their appointments signal America’s new focus on increasing international trade as a stimulus to the domestic economy. The two representatives will deal with proposals for a customs accord with the European Union (TAFTA and an investment agreement) and a commercial union with Pacific nations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership. But the new stress on trade represents a more profound reorientation than just a new way of seeking economic development. It underscores America’s undiminished power of attraction to other countries in both international politics and economics. Read more
Posts tagged ‘American power’
The Power & Policy Fellows’ Forum
By Chuck Freilich, Senior Fellow, International Security Program
The popular uprisings sweeping the Middle East are breathtaking and apparently far from over. After decades of paralysis and ossification, the entire Middle Eastern landscape is changing before our eyes.
With the rapidity of events elsewhere, attention has been diverted from Iran, in which all of the components of the revolutionary situation, which gave rise to the uprisings in the Arab world, exist as well, even more so. Read more
Last week, I published a piece in Foreign Policy entitled “The War On Soft Power.” I argued that many official instruments of soft or attractive power — public diplomacy, broadcasting, exchange programs, development assistance, disaster relief, military-to-military contacts — are scattered around the government, and there is no overarching strategy or budget that even tries to integrate them. But cutting them all to zero would make no difference to the resolution of our trillion dollar deficit problem. By cutting $8.5 billion from the State Department budget, Congress did nothing about the deficit, but took a large slice out of our foreign policy capacity. I concluded that “Congress needs to be serious about deficit reduction, and it also needs to be serious about foreign policy. The events of the past week suggest it is serious about neither.” Read more
As a colleague who has been learning from Joe Nye for many years, I join the chorus applauding his latest in a string of pearls of wisdom about power in international affairs. The Future of Power is a must-read. Imaginatively, judiciously, Joe tours the horizon of current debates and offers thoughtful, policy-relevant advice.
From questions about the rise of China and decline of the U.S., to cybersecurity and changing metrics of power in 21st century international affairs, he advances the debate. (Read Joseph Nye’s inaugural Power & Policy blog post)
With so much to agree with, what’s to disagree? While my major difference is more one of emphasis than fundamentals, let me overstate it for the sake of clarity. Consider the core question: what is the single biggest threat to American power today? Read more