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Posts tagged ‘Nicholas Burns’

Two challenges that college graduates will inherit

Nicholas Burns

By Nicholas Burns

(Excerpt from op-ed in Boston Globe, May 24, 2012)

My family and I spent Monday at Boston College celebrating the graduation of our youngest daughter. And at Harvard, where I teach, thousands of graduates will parade to Harvard Yard in the annual rite of spring that never fails to remind that our young people are our greatest hope. Late May is an optimistic time when students emerge from commencement ceremonies to make their way in the world. This scene plays out in every American city, but especially here in the citadel of learning, Greater Boston, where higher education is our most vital industry.

Many of this week’s graduates may be too exhausted by round-the-clock celebrations and too distracted by the fanfare to remember much of what their graduation speakers tell them. And it is too much to ask that they focus on their cosmic responsibilities as citizens after receiving their diplomas. But, as we pass the symbolic baton of leadership to them in the years to come, there are at least two great national challenges the graduates will inherit that are worthy of reflection.

(Read the full text of the op-ed)

 

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Blame China, not the U.S., for the Plight of Chen Guangcheng

Nicholas Burns

By Nicholas Burns

The dramatic events in Beijing surrounding the brave Chinese dissident, Chen Guangcheng, are confounding and hard to fathom at such a great distance and without all the facts.   That has not stopped critics who should know better from rushing to blame the Obama Administration for having mishandled negotiations with the Chinese authorities over his fate. Read more

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India disappoints U.S. friends with its Iran policy

Nicholas Burns

By Nicholas Burns

The Indian government’s ill-advised statement last week that it will continue to purchase oil from Iran is a major setback for the U.S. attempt to isolate the Iranian government over the nuclear issue.  The New York Times reported Sunday that Indian authorities are actively aiding Indian firms to avoid current sanctions by advising them to pay for Iranian oil in Indian rupees.  It may go even further by agreeing to barter deals with Iran—all to circumvent the sanctions regime carefully constructed by the U.S. and its friends and allies.  According to the Times, India now has the dubious distinction of being the leading importer of Iranian oil. Read more

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India’s strategic importance to the US

Nicholas Burns

By Nicholas Burns

In my February 3 Boston Globe op-ed, “India’s Strategic Importance to the U.S.”, I argue that a close U.S.-India partnership can be of immense value to the United States in the future, particularly in preserving the influence of the democratic countries as China rises to power in Asia.

I also emphasize how difficult a partner India can be, from differences on global trade to Iran sanctions and the NATO intervention in Libya. Read more

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Libya: A victory for NATO, too

Nicholas Burns

Nicholas Burns

By Nicholas Burns

The death of Muammar Qadhafi is the decisive event in the nine-month civil war in Libya.   In the minds of most Libyans, the war could not end without his departure from the country or death on the battlefield.

As British Prime Minister Cameron reminded us today, it is important to remember Qadhafi’s many victims, including the hundreds of Americans and other nationals who died in the Lockerbie terrorist attack of December 1988.  Qadhafi was a tyrant who ruled mercilessly for over forty years and left most of the people of his oil-rich country impoverished.  His brutal, authoritarian rule extinguished all independent movements and denied the building over time of the civil society organizations that are the foundation of most countries and all democracies. Read more

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