Duties Without Borders
CAMBRIDGE — More than 130,000 people are said to have died in Syria’s civil war. United Nations reports of atrocities, Internet images of attacks on civilians, and accounts of suffering refugees rend our hearts. But what is to be done – and by whom?
The Myth of Isolationist America
CAMBRIDGE — Is the United States turning inward and becoming isolationist? That question was posed to me by a number of financial and political leaders at the recent World Economic Forum at Davos, and was heard again a few days later at the annual Munich Security Conference. In a strong speech at Davos, Secretary of State John Kerry gave an unambiguous answer: “Far from disengaging, America is proud to be more engaged than ever.” Yet the question lingered.
CAMBRIDGE—This year marks the hundredth anniversary of a transformative event of modern history. World War I killed some 20 million people and ground up a generation of Europe’s youth. It also fundamentally changed the international order in Europe and beyond.
The Presidency: 20th Century Presidential Leadership
On Sunday, December 15, 2013, Harvard Kennedy School Professor Joseph Nye examined the foreign policies of 20th century American presidents in a segment titled “The Presidency: 20th Century Presidential Leadership” on C-SPAN’s American History TV. Through the identification of two main types of presidential temperaments—transformational and transactional—Nye argues both styles were important in the development of America’s international power.
After his talk, Nye continues the discussion with fellow Harvard Kennedy School Professor David Gergen. To see the episode in full, click here.
Nicholas Kralev speaks with Harvard professor Joseph Nye about presidential leadership in the conduct of diplomacy, and how the United States can maintain its primacy in world affairs. Commenting on political appointments to diplomatic positions Nye says, “It has become worse with the pressure of money in modern politics.”
Kralev is an author and expert on diplomacy, world affairs, and global travel, and is host of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev." A former Financial Times and Washington Times correspondent, he has traveled around the world with four U.S. secretaries of state—Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell, and Madeleine Albright.
The Diplomat: Interview with Joseph S. Nye
The Diplomat’s Assistant Editor Zachary Keck sat down with Dr. Joseph Nye of Harvard University to discuss Syria, China, ‘Soft Power’, America’s ‘Pivot/Rebalance’ to the Pacific, cybersecurity and more.
Keck: You’ve often discussed the notion of China’s soft power, noting both its potential sources and its continued weaknesses. What impact, if any, do you think Beijing’s refusal to break with Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria will have on its soft power, both inside and outside the Arab world?
Nye: China’s ability to get what it wants through attraction and persuasion rests on a number of factors: its culture (witness the Confucius Institutes it promotes); its values (particularly a successful growth model); and its foreign policies (for example, the pledge not to intervene in the internal affairs of other countries). But China’s refusal to support UN resolutions against the Assad regime has hurt more than helped. While Iran applauds the non-intervention policy, most Arab states and publics find China less attractive because of its policy on Syria.
The Return of Japan
TOKYO – “Japan is back!” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declared during a visit to Washington, DC, earlier this year. But, while Japan may be on the right track after two decades of economic stagnation, there is still much to be done to secure the country’s long-term future.
November 22 will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. For people alive at the time, it was one of those events that are so shocking that you remember where you were when you heard the news. I was getting off a train in Nairobi when I saw the dramatic headline.