On February 24, Foreign Policy at Brookings and NBC’s Meet the Press hosted a discussion with Brookings Senior Fellow Robert Kagan, author of the new book The World America Made (Knopf, 2012).New York Times columnist David Brooks joined the discussion, which focused on the belief that America is in decline and whether U.S. dominance on the world stage was ever a reality. David Gregory, host of NBC’s Meet the Press, moderated the session.
Russian voters went to the polls on March 4 to choose their next president. While politics in Russia have undergone a seismic shift over the past six months, few doubted that Vladimir Putin would return to the Russian presidency. On March 7, the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings held a discussion exploring the political, economic and foreign policy implications of the election. Panelists included CUSE Director Fiona Hill and Senior Fellows Clifford Gaddy and Steven Pifer.
On March 1, Tamara Cofman Wittes returned to Brookings, becoming the new director of the Saban Center for Middle East Policy. Wittes originally joined the Saban Center as a senior fellow in 2003 and left to join the Obama administration in 2009. Wittes served as deputy assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs from November of 2009 to January 2012, coordinating U.S. policy on democracy and human rights in the Middle East for the State Department. Wittes also oversaw State’s Middle East Partnership Initiative and served as deputy special coordinator for Middle East transitions. She was central to organizing the U.S. government's response to the Arab awakening.
During her previous tour in the Saban Center, Wittes directed the Middle East Democracy and Development Project. In that capacity, Wittes conducted research into political and economic reform in the Middle East region as well as U.S. efforts to promote democracy there. While at Brookings, Wittes authored Freedom’s Unsteady March: America’s Role in Building Arab Democracy (Brookings Press, 2008).She is also editor of How Israelis and Palestinians Negotiate: A Cross-Cultural Analysis of the Oslo Peace Process(USIP, 2005). A long-time and much respected Middle East researcher and policy adviser, Wittes was one of the first recipients of the Rabin-Peres Peace Award, established by President Bill Clinton in 1997.
Outgoing Saban Center Director Ken Pollack will continue as a senior fellow, returning to research and writing on a full-time basis. Brookings is grateful to Ken for his hard work and leadership during his time at the Saban Center’s helm.
In Cybersecurity and U.S.-China Relations, Kenneth Lieberthal and Peter Singer explain why the U.S.-China relationship is perhaps the most significant to the future of world politics. Lieberthal and Singer argue that how these two nations cooperate and understand the challenges of cybersecurity will be critical, not just to the future of the Internet and its billions of users, but also to the overall global order beyond cyberspace.
As a new president, Barack Obama captured the attention and imagination of citizens around the world unlike few of his predecessors. How well has Obama carried out his duties as U.S. commander-in-chief, top diplomat and grand strategist? In Bending History (Brookings Press, 2012), Martin Indyk, Kenneth Lieberthal and Michael O'Hanlon explore the promise and contradictions of Obama's foreign policy strategies.