A new regional cooperation bloc to include every country in the Americas except Canada and the United Sates has received almost no coverage in the English-language media. Some observers, however, believe the Community of Latin American and Carribean States — CELAC for its Spanish acronym — represents the first step in a historic geopolitical shift away from an era dominated by pro-U.S. policies. “It’s a regional grouping for a new era really, which is no longer about free trade and neoliberalism,” says Alexander Main at the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington. Foreign ministers from several of CELAC’s […]
An unmanned aerial combat drone developed by Boeing has successfully completed its first flight at Edwards Air Force Base, California. Called the Boeing Phantom Ray, the aircraft is designed to support several potential missions including surveillance and attack.
As details of the successful raid against Osama bin Laden’s Abbotabad compound come to light, it is becoming clear that the assault was the most important, and probably the most successful, operation in the history of U.S. special operations forces. Instead of Air Force bombs or Navy missiles, President Barack Obama opted for the special skills and capabilities of a Navy SEAL team to eliminate the al-Qaida leader. The reason is simple: A bomb or missile might have more easily killed bin Laden, but only special forces could confirm his death, recover his body and capture a trove of materials […]
The U.S. Export-Import Bank recently approved a nearly $3 billion loan guarantee to a Colombian oil refinery, one of many recent moves by the bank. In an email interview, Gary Hufbauer, Reginald Jones Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, discussed the operations of the U.S. Export-Import Bank. WPR: What is the core mission of the U.S. Export-Import Bank and what are its principal activities? Gary Hufbauer: The core mission of the U.S. Export-Import Bank should be to promote U.S. exports of goods and services in circumstances where financing conditions make a difference. The bank carries out its […]
The United States and Pakistan have sustained a decades-old partnership on the strength of a Cold War alliance and a set of narrow but shared vital interests. However, the relationship has undergone profound changes as a result of the Afghan War, which on one hand has forced the two countries into an awkward but necessary embrace, and on the other exposed deep and potentially irreconcilable differences. At the core of this rift is Pakistan’s duplicitous regional strategy, whereby Islamabad provides critical logistics and intelligence support to America while aiding or turning a blind eye to its extremist enemies. For years […]
While the death of Osama bin Laden represents the long overdue demise of one man, its impact on the long-term trajectory of American foreign policy is likely to be more profound: Along with bin Laden, so too dies the “global war on terrorism.” This does not mean that there are no longer any terrorists who want to kill Americans and other Westerners. Neither does it mean that al-Qaida will simply disappear overnight. And another major attack could return the U.S. and its allies to a war footing. But bin Laden’s death does mean that the exaggerated role that terrorism has […]
President Barack Obama reshuffled his national security team last week, and the reviews were overwhelmingly positive. The White House proclaimed that this was the “strongest possible team,” leaving unanswered the question, “Toward what end?” Obama’s choices represent the continued reduction of the role of security as an administration priority. That fits into his determined strategy to reduce America’s overseas military commitments amid the country’s ongoing fiscal distress. Obama foresees a smaller, increasingly background role for U.S. security in the world, and these selections feed that pattern. First, there is Leon Panetta’s move from director of the Central Intelligence Agency to […]