The Realist Prism: Without Consensus, U.S. Red Lines Can’t Force Action

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There has been a great deal of talk in U.S. foreign policy circles about “red lines” and the strength of American resolve in recent days. Much of it has revolved around the emerging evidence that chemical weapons, namely sarin gas, may have been used in the Syrian civil war, which drew attention back to the Obama administration’s declarations in 2012 that the use of unconventional weapons could be a trigger for American intervention in that conflict. The sarin discussion came on the heels of a brief controversy surrounding allegations made by Chinese dissident Chen Guangchen that the Chinese government was […]

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