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Much of the new U.S. administration’s foreign policy is a mystery, but expect broad policy continuity in U.S. relations with India while geopolitical and geoeconomic questions pull the two countries in new directions.
PM Modi’s search for support for India’s NSG bid around the world shows leadership, not desperation.
The relationship between India and the United States has evolved from one of cool distance to strategic proximity in a generation. This is lightning fast for geopolitics, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass.
Earlier this week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India visited President Obama, marking his second visit to the White House in two years. Like his two immediate predecessors, Obama has made special efforts to expand ties with India.
Ahead of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s fourth visit to the United States and his first address to the U.S. Congress on June 8, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and Foreign Affairs offer resources on relevant topics.
In testimony before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on May 24, 2016, Alyssa Ayres discussed areas of progress and the importance of managing expectations in U.S.-India relations. Drawing on recommendations made by the 2015 CFR Independent Task Force on U.S.-India Relations, Ayres recommended reframing the bilateral relationship as a joint venture instead of as a not-quite alliance, arguing that such a shift would allow for increased cooperation in areas of convergence without letting differences undermine progress.
In testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, Alyssa Ayres recapped the trajectory of U.S.-India economic ties over the past decade and a half, and proposed ways to take the relationship forward.
The government of India filed suit on March 3 in the World Trade Organization (WTO) seeking to overturn a new U.S. tax on high-skilled migrants that India says discriminates against its citizens and would damage some of its most successful companies. The case marks the first time that a country's immigration laws have been challenged using the rules of a trade agreement, writes CFR’s Edward Alden.
Alyssa Ayres discusses how the United States and India should work together to improve their shared interests.
The U.S.-India defense relationship has entered a new phase that includes the joint development and manufacturing of defense equipment. Both the United States and India stand to benefit from defense collaboration, but the risks of technology transfer involved in the projects require both sides to be clear about their expectations, write Ashlyn Anderson and Amy J. Nelson.
India is growing faster than any other economy in the world. This is not just because oil prices have fallen, writes CFR’s Sebastian Mallaby.
In this report, Varun Sivaram and co-authors argue that three very different segments of the Indian solar industry—utility-scale, distributed, and off-grid solar—will be required to deliver both climate results and domestic co-benefits to India. In addition, the Indian national and state governments, with the support of countries and institutions around the world, can advance the development of three diverse segments of the solar industry—utility-scale, distributed, and off-grid solar— by pursuing four building blocks of a successful solar strategy: (1) Reform the utility sector; (2) Harmonize federal and state policies; (3) Secure substantial and cost-effective financing; and (4) Foster the diffusion of technology and standards from abroad.
Given the complex politics of the India–Pakistan relationship, the United States does not play a role in their bilateral talks, but Washington can certainly take steps to help prevent spoilers from once again disrupting a dialogue process that deserves every chance to succeed.
Daniel Markey examines scenarios that could lead to armed confrontation between China and India, and the implications and consequences were that to occur.
India has taken a major step forward ahead of global climate talks in Paris, but the country’s clean energy strategy still faces domestic and international challenges, write CFR’s Varun Sivaram and Annushka Shivnani.
Although China and India have repeatedly demonstrated a mutual desire to prevent conflict, the potential for their relationship to deteriorate is ever present. A border clash, conflict with Pakistan, maritime skirmish, or crisis over Tibet could raise tensions to the point of armed confrontation. Daniel S. Markey explains how the United States can promote peaceful relations between the world's two largest countries.
Experts discuss U.S.-India relations and a new CFR independent task force report.
Experts discuss U.S.-India relations and a new CFR independent task force report.
“A rising India offers one of the most substantial opportunities to advance American national interests over the next two decades,” asserts a new Independent Task Force report sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), Working With a Rising India: A Joint Venture for the New Century.
India has long been an economy with tremendous promise.
The next president says he wants to make deals, but his administration is going to be flying blind.
CFR President Richard N. Haass, Director of Studies James M. Lindsay, and CFR.org Managing Editor Robert McMahon examine the world that President-Elect Donald Trump will inherit on Inauguration Day.
Donald Trump is sworn into office, Detroit hosts an auto show, and Turkey's state of emergency continues.
If Mr. Trump’s slavish devotion to Putin persists in office, it will continue to raise questions about the exact nature of their relationship. If the president-elect wants to put such suspicions to rest, he should get as tough with the Kremlin as he vows to do with America’s other enemies.
“These are no ordinary times. It will not be business as usual in a world of disarray; as a result, it cannot be foreign policy as usual,” writes Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), in his latest book, A World in Disarray: American Foreign Policy and the Crisis of the Old Order—a timely examination of a world increasingly defined by disorder. In three parts, the book contemplates the history of world order from the rise of the modern state system to the end of the Cold War; accounts for the momentous shifts in the last quarter century to shed light on the current state of affairs, and outlines specific steps to tackle the many challenges ahead.
When Rex Tillerson, Exxon Mobil Corp.’s longtime chief executive and now Donald Trump’s choice to be secretary of state, appears before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, he will get a lot of questions about his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin. If senators want a better conversation with Mr. Tillerson, they should get him to acknowledge—or dispute—the basic facts of Russian-American relations. Stephen Sestanovich presents three questions aimed at getting Tillerson to admit how much sanctions have accomplished.
CFR President Richard N. Haass argues for an updated global operating system to address challenges from terrorism and the spread of nuclear weapons to climate change and cyberspace.
Contrary to his image as a “pragmatist,” former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who died last week, brandished a moderate image that concealed the reality of his militancy, argues CFR’s Ray Takeyh with Reuel Gerecht. Instead, Rafsanjani was the most consequential architect of the theocracy’s machinery of repression and regional ambitions and a primary sponsor of the Islamic Republic’s nuclear aspirations.
Trump’s reaction to the Russia hack report suggests a guilty conscience and raises the question of why he fails to raise the slightest objection to Russia’s egregious misconduct
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un turns 33, President Barack Obama delivers his farewell address, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits the Philippines.
CFR's James M. Lindsay, Robert McMahon, and Scott Snyder examine President-Elect Donald Trump's priorities on North Korea.
Delegates from nineteen countries discuss how best to address challenges posed by the enduring threat of transnational terrorism, renewed prospect of territorial aggression, massive flows of migrants, and growing public skepticism of globalization and free trade.
CFR President Richard Haass will discuss A World in Disarray: American Foreign Policy and the Crisis of the Old Order with David Remnick of the New Yorker
Iraqi Kurds have enjoyed virtual autonomy for more than two decades, but formal independence might finally be in reach due to changing realities facing Iraq and Turkey, writes CFR’s Steven A. Cook.
Last week’s rollout of new sanctions against Russia by the Obama administration answered many questions about Moscow’s alleged hacking activities. But it didn’t address one crucial question, writes Stephen Sestanovich.
Jay Winik commends President-elect Trump’s irrepressible spirit and boldness while simultaneously cautioning him to be mindful of the unique demands put upon the occupant of the Oval Office, as demonstrated through a collection of past presidencies.
How did the Obama administration become obsessed with freezing Israeli settlements, leading to the UN vote and Kerry speech that have brought such widespread condemnation? Elliott Abrams explains the history in National Review.
Unconditional U.S. support could cause problems for Israel’s prime minister, argues Philip Gordon.
John Kerry’s 75-minute apologia on Israel, peace, and the settlements contained no new ideas, but did further damage to Israel. Elliott Abrams explains the problem in The Weekly Standard.
President Obama’s signature rebalance to the Pacific never really got off the ground. Could Trump succeed where he failed?
General Sir Adrian Bradshaw discusses his tenure as deputy supreme allied commander Europe and provide his perspective on the strategic threats facing NATO.
U.S. leadership in the UNHRC can advance U.S. interests and lessen anti-Israel bias while supporting measures to avert and de-escalate human rights crises.
In his op-ed, Stewart Patrick analyzes prospects for U.S.-UN relations under President-Elect Trump and Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who will both assume office in January 2017.
Last week the Obama administration abandoned Israel at the United Nations, allowing the passage of a damaging and hostile Security Council resolution. In an op-ed entitled “The United States Just Made Middle East Peace Harder” in The Washington Post, Elliott Abrams explained his views.
This was a serious strategy pursued energetically by leaders of both the United States and Russia. For many years it seemed to work. That it has lately yielded to acrimony and division does not mean there was a better choice, argues Stephen Sestanovich.
"The duty to prevent and halt genocide and mass atrocities lies first and foremost with the State, but the international community has a role that cannot be blocked by the invocation of sovereignty."
The United Nations said that in 2005 about its "responsibility to protect." It's the concept that "if a State is manifestly failing to protect its populations, the international community must be prepared to take collective action to protect populations."
And here is what UN officials said this week when describing what is happening in Syria: "A complete meltdown of humanity in Aleppo."
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon discusses the role of the United Nations in a changing global landscape.
CFR’s John Bellinger publishes excerpts of his Sixth Annual Lloyd Cutler Lecture on Rule of Law at the Supreme Court, regarding presidential use of force and the bounds of domestic and international law.
The best way to advance the interests of American workers and consumers is to negotiate better and stronger international agreements, argue CFR's Thomas J. Bollyky and Edward Alden.
"President-elect Trump will find out very quickly that our allies are less a liability and more the very strategic asset the U.S. needs," writes Sheila A. Smith, CFR senior fellow for Japan studies.
As America and the United Nations face political transitions, the U.S. should not waste an opportunity to preserve its international interests, writes Elliott Abrams.
Experts discuss the upcoming Brexit negotiations, the various settlement options, and the future relationship between Great Britain and the European Union.
Among many challenges revealed during the 2016 presidential election to the Obama adminisration’s rebalance to Asia, Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, notes “it is the United States’ own commitment to the region that seems the most fragile.”
Gordon M. Goldstein and Robert M. McDowell address the stakes of the increasingly contentious struggle over who controls the future of the internet.
With the Philippine president ditching Washington for Beijing, the contest to control the South China Sea just got a lot more complicated.
In a review essay in Foreign Affairs, Philip Gordon asks whether the United States and Israel are drifting apart and assesses proposals to keep them together.
In this op-ed Jerry Cohen and Yu-Jie Chen argue that both governments would benefit if China ceased a new policy of having Taiwanese criminals from third countries deported to China instead of Taiwan.
Five authors examine the opportunities and risks presented by regional institutions across five issue areas: finance, trade, development lending, human rights, and peace operations.
Kenneth Rogoff discusses the 'Curse of Cash,' his new book about phasing out most paper money to fight crime and tax evasion—and to battle financial crises by tapping the power of negative interest rates.
Governments have long worried about terrorists using the Internet to launch cyberattacks, spread propaganda, recruit and radicalise individuals and raise funds. However, the Islamic State’s exploitation of social media has caused a crisis and generated questions about international law’s role in addressing terrorism in cyberspace.
Beginning on March 31, 2016, over fifty world leaders join President Barack Obama in Washington for the fourth and likely final Nuclear Security Summit (NSS). The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) offers resources on the global challenge of securing nuclear materials.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Powers gave a speech on March 2, 2016, about the UN Security Council vote North Korea sanctions.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met on February 23, 2016. They discussed North Korea's nuclear tests and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye spoke to the National Assembly on February 16, 2016, about North Korea's missile launch on February 7, 2016 and nuclear test on January 6, 2016.
The United Nations Security Council met on February 7, 2016, to discuss North Korea's missile launch and previous nuclear test. U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power, Japanese Ambassador Motohide Yoshikawa, and South Korean Ambassador Oh Joon discussed the Security Council's response.
The White House moved quickly to debunk North Korea's exaggerated claim that a Jan. 5 "artificial earthquake" at the site where Pyongyang had conducted three previous nuclear tests was a breakthrough detonation of a hydrogen bomb. The size of the blast was similar to that of North Korea's January 2013 test and had a yield thousands of times lower than the yield expected of a hydrogen blast. But in downplaying North Korea's claim so as not to feed Kim Jong-un's cravings for international attention, the Obama administration risks underplaying the growing danger posed by North Korea's unchecked efforts to develop nuclear and missile capabilities needed to threaten a nuclear strike on the United States.
A recent article on additive manufacturing sounded the alarm over the use of this technology for the production of a nuclear weapon. While the authors, Matthew Kroenig and Tristan Volpe, are correct to assert that additive manufacturing is changing proliferation, today’s clear and present danger comes from conventional weapons, not just nuclear warheads.
U.S. and international sanctions have battered the Iranian economy and brought Tehran to negotiate over its nuclear program. Lifting them is central to a deal but will be a complex process.
Experts discuss the status of global nuclear proliferation.
In his testimony before the Senate Committee on Armed Services, Ray Takeyh argues that the United States must find a way to impose limits on Iran's nuclear ambitions through negotiations while restraining its regional ambitions through pressure.
On March 20, 2015, three hundred and sixty-seven House lawmakers signed a letter to President Obama regarding nuclear negotiations with Iran. The letter lists concerns the lawmakers have regarding Iran's ability to build a nuclear weapon and the Iranian government's relations with Iraq, Syria, and Yemen.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to the U.S. Congress on March 3, 2015, to address Israel's concerns about U.S. negotiations with Iran on its nuclear program. Prime Minister Netanyahu also gave remarks to the U.S. Congress in 2011.
The real risk to strategic stability may not be the U.S. falling behind the modernization of other countries but in racing aggressively ahead.
Will the extension of Iran's nuclear talks lead to a deal? Expert Robert Litwak says it depends on whether the Iranian regime is prepared to bear the political costs of concessions on uranium enrichment.
In his testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, CFR Senior Fellow Ray Takeyh discusses the perception of Iranian president Hassan Rouhani as a reformer or pragmatist, the role of the Supreme National Security Council, and the future of the Islamic Republic's nuclear program.
Frank Klotz examines President Obama's Berlin speech and his new nuclear weapons guidance and finds them to be a sensible and balanced approach in the post-Cold War world.
The United States has long struggled with how to manage Iran's nuclear ambitions. Any U.S. military option in Iran is likely to be dynamic, depending on its objectives.
According to Meghan O'Sullivan, U.S. action in Syria may have implications for Iran and its nuclear program.
Gregory Koblentz weighs the U.S. foreign policy options toward Iran.
Iran's nuclear ambitions are likely driven by multiple factors, from security concerns to domestic polices. However, political competition within Iran, rather than Israel's nuclear capabilities, plays a more significant role in driving Iran's nuclear ambition.
CFR hosted a workshop to discuss environmental health linkages in China, the Chinese government’s capability to respond to associated health crises, and international experience for coping with similar challenges.
During his annual New Year’s address on Sunday, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s dropped a bombshell: He stated as part of his review of the past year's accomplishments that North Korea has entered “the final stage in preparations to test-launch” an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). One that could hit the United States. To deal with the threat, the Trump administration should strengthen sanctions and find a way to work with China or, at a minimum, should isolate North Korea as an essential area of cooperation in an otherwise contentious U.S.-China relationship.
Many government policies now "lock in" mature clear energy technologies while blocking out innovative alternatives. Here's Varun Sivaram's plan to transform lock-in barriers into bridges for technological succession.
In the San Francisco Chronicle, Varun Sivaram argues that California must merge its grid with neighbors to continue to reach its ambitious targets for renewable power.
The incoming Trump administration will confront a Middle East in turmoil, writes Ray Takeyh.
CFR's James M. Lindsay, Robert McMahon, and Varun Sivaram examine President-Elect Donald Trump's energy and climate change priorities.
Varun Sivaram builds the case for energy innovation under the Trump Administration. He argues that President Trump should focus the government on technology-specific missions, reform the sprawling set of energy-focused federal institutions, and invest in research and development.
Laurie Garrett writes that all Rex Tillerson cares about is energy, but does that mean he’s going to gut America’s $50 billion foreign aid budget?
As sea levels rise around the world, experts discuss the adaptation policies for U.S. coastal cities and the budgetary and national security implications of rising sea levels on U.S. coastal communities.
At climate talks in Morocco, negotiators will try to move forward on issues left unresolved by the 2015 Paris Agreement. However, developed and developing countries still remain far apart on major issues, write CFR’s Varun Sivaram and Sagatom Saha.
Deputy Secretary Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall provides her perspective on the changing definition of energy security and the role of innovation in ensuring America’s energy future.
What CFR.org Editors are reading the week of October 24–28, 2016.
Adam Mount and Scott A. Snyder discuss the threat of North Korea's accelerating nuclear program and offer policy recommendations for stability in Northeast Asia.
Many countries quietly reduced their subsidies in the past few years, but more work remains. The United States can help consolidate these goals, write CFR’s Varun Sivaram and Jennifer Harris.
Fuel subsidies often strain government budgets, fail to target poverty efficiently, distribute benefits unfairly, perpetuate corrupt regimes, and worsen climate change.
Experts discuss deforestation in the Amazon rainforest.
Paul Douglas and Mitchell C. Hescox discuss faith, science, and responsible stewardship of the environment.
What CFR.org Editors are reading the week of September 19–23, 2016.
The next president of the United States will play a critical role in shaping the country's climate policy, deciding whether and how to reduce emissions, while minimizing any impact on economic growth. This video explains the domestic and global challenges.
Ernest Moniz discusses the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, its one-year anniversary, and the effectiveness of the nuclear deal's nonproliferation and verification measures in blocking Iran's path to a nuclear weapon.