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October, 2015


The ‘unbelievably small’ deployment of special operations forces to Syria

Today, the president reneged on his longstanding promise not to deploy American ground troops to Syria. It may be tempting to view this development as a change in the administration’s strategy, or even as a sign that they have finally recognized that degrading and destroying the Islamic State will take more than airstrikes and relying on other forces to conduct ground operations. Regretfully, neither appears to be true, as this deployment will neither be sufficient in size nor capability to make significant headway in the fight against ISIS. (L to R) Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, US Secretary of StateRead More

A trilateral in name only

When leaders of Japan, South Korea, and China gather in Seoul this weekend, it may be best to paraphrase Sigmund Freud: Sometimes, a meeting is just a meeting. The Seoul confab will be the first trilateral meeting of Northeast Asia’s main powers since May 2012. This time, however, a new face will represent China, current premier Li Keqiang, who will be making his first visit to South Korea. That is leading some observers to predict that the agenda will be focused more on economic issues than political and security ones. Such an approach would probably suit Japan’s leader, Prime MinisterRead More

Liberté de la mer: A case for French naval operations in Asia

A French frigate is docked at Zhanjiang in Guangdong province this week for a good will visit, and two Australian naval vessels will, in the coming days, engage in bilateral exercises with Chinese warships. After they conclude their activities with the Chinese navy, all three of these ships should head for Subi Reef and other (formerly) low-tide elevations in the South China Sea. There has been much talk about American allies joining it in combined freedom of navigation operations (FONOPS) like the one the USS Lassen carried out late Monday. Such cooperation would be well and good, but it mayRead More

State of the race: Ponnuru on MSNBC’s ‘MTPDaily’

Source: New AEI Feed State of the race: Ponnuru on MSNBC’s ‘MTPDaily’

On energy security, Obama should follow David Cameron’s example

Less than a decade ago U.S. energy security was in crisis. Domestic oil production had been declining steadily from a peak of 10 million barrels per day in 1970 to only half that amount in 2005. Our reliance on oil imports and OPEC had risen to an all-time high ten years ago. U.S. natural gas production had been flat for more than 30 years and was slipping behind growing domestic demand. We were on track to become a major natural gas importer, a future that energy experts the world over agreed was nearly inevitable. Despite countless promises about breaking —Read More

The family foundations of economic growth

It is often hard to understand exactly what drives economic growth. By definition, economic growth is the amalgamation of labor, capital and technological change. As individuals, we understand that we contribute to this process in our daily lives through our decisions to work, save, consume and invest. Yet it is often difficult to foresee how these choices yield the larger, macroeconomic process of economic development and growth. In his recent paper, economist Robert Gordon, documents the long history of U.S. economic growth, linking periods of slow and rapid growth to three industrial revolutions: steam and railroads; electricity and the internalRead More