Robert D. Kaplan

How to Crash Putin’s Brexit Party

For decades, NATO and the European Union have silently worked in unison. The former required a foundation of European unity, and the EU to a significant extent provided that, its elitist and statist bureaucracy notwithstanding. Now the architecture is being toppled, as the vote for Brexit may trigger a cascade of desertions.

How Islam Created Europe

Europe was essentially defined by Islam. And Islam is redefining it now.

Notable & Quotable: Anarchy in the 21st Century

From foreign-affairs analyst Robert D. Kaplan's "The Post-Imperial Moment: Vulgar, populist anarchy will define the twenty-first century" in the May-June issue of the National Interest:

Freedom for Me—But Not for Thee

When historians in future decades ponder America’s wars in Vietnam and Iraq, the name of Andrew J. Bacevich, a West Point graduate, retired Army colonel and professor emeritus at Boston University, will have its own poignant chapter. Mr. Bacevich fought in Vietnam, and his only son, an Army first lieutenant named after him, was killed in Iraq.

Obama Is No George H. W. Bush

President Barack Obama is known to be a great admirer of President George H. W. Bush, who Obama recently said is "one of the more underrated presidents we have ever had." Obama notes, "When you look at how he managed foreign policy. . . he was thoughtful, restrained and made good decisions." Rahm Emanuel, Obama's former chief of staff, explicitly compared his boss some years back to Bush 41, because of Obama's "realpolitik" and "cold-blooded" instinct about national self-interest.

A blunt defense of interrogations, targeted killings and domestic spying

People living in a democracy in an age of electronic communications can be altogether fickle. After a mass casualty attack, they demand total vengeance on the killers and their co-conspirators. But once severe retribution is exacted and normalcy returns, these same people may accuse their security organs of going too far in their methods. The safer they feel, the less tolerant they are regarding the methods of those who keep them safe.

Eurasia's Coming Anarchy

As China asserts itself in its nearby seas and Russia wages war in Syria and Ukraine, it is easy to assume that Eurasia’s two great land powers are showing signs of newfound strength. But the opposite is true: increasingly, China and Russia flex their muscles not because they are powerful but because they are weak. Unlike Nazi Germany, whose power at home in the 1930s fueled its military aggression abroad, today’s revisionist powers are experiencing the reverse phenomenon. In China and Russia, it is domestic insecurity that is breeding belligerence.

Book Launch: In Europe’s Shadow: Two Cold Wars and a Thirty-Year Journey Through Romania and Beyond

The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) hosted the book launch for In Europe’s Shadow: Two Cold Wars and a Thirty-Year Journey Through Romania and Beyond by Robert Kaplan, CNAS Senior Fellow, on Thursday, February 11, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Europe’s New Medieval Map

Look at any map of Europe from the Middle Ages or the early modern era, before the Industrial Revolution, and you will be overwhelmed by its dizzying incoherence—all of those empires, kingdoms, confederations, minor states, “upper” this and “lower” that. It is a picture of a radically fractured world. Today’s Europe is, in effect, returning to such a map.

Time to Act on Ukraine

The Ukraine crisis, though temporarily out of the headlines, is at a critical stage. There is no better opportunity than now through the next several months to forge a deal with Russia advantageous to American interests. The Europeans may very well not extend sanctions after the first half of 2016, even as Russia is now in a near-disastrous economic position. The confluence of the two trends calls for dramatic diplomatic action. This is not a deal for a deal's sake, but a way to get Russia effectively out of eastern Ukraine.


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