Obama-Scowcroft Connection Points to Realism

Whether Barack Obama is at heart a Wilsonian idealists or “progressive realist,” as Nikolas Gvosdev put it in his recent piece for WPR, is one of the key questions about the incoming administration’s foreign policy. Early in the campaign, I worried that some of Obama’s foreign policy advisers’ rhetoric about “dignity promotion” and a “transformative agenda” indicated the then-candidate was disposed to a brand of idealism that Walter McDougall has called “global meliorism.” In our expression of support for the President-elect in the wake of his election victory earlier this month, the WPR editors again voiced the worry that Obama […]

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