23 Items

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Russian businessmen in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Monday, Dec. 19, 2016.

(AP)

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

A Blueprint for Donald Trump to Fix Relations with Russia

| December 18, 2016

In a "policy memo" to President-elect Donald Trump, Graham Allison and Dimitri K. Simes write: "The two Chinese characters that make up the word “crisis” can be interpreted as meaning both “danger” and “opportunity.” Russia today offers your administration not only a serious challenge but a significant opportunity.

Russia is no longer the Evil Empire the United States confronted over decades of Cold War. Nonetheless, Russia remains a player whose choices affect vital U.S. interests profoundly across the agenda of global issues. First and foremost, Russia remains the only nation that can erase the United States from the map in thirty minutes.

Blog Post - Iran Matters

Iran Nuclear Deal Implementation Day: A Belfer Center Expert Round-Up

The Iran nuclear deal was officially implemented on Saturday, as Iran successfully fulfilled its initial key nuclear commitments and the international community relieved major sanctions, including unfreezing about $100 billion of Iranian money. Implementation Day was met with applause from deal supporters in the U.S. and Iran, while critics have raised questions about whether Iran will adhere to its requirements and how it will flex its newfound economic power. Also in recent days, the U.S. and Iran agreed to a prisoner swap that led to the freedom of Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian and others, and negotiated the release of American sailors detained in Iran. What does the arrival of Implementation Day mean for Iran’s nuclear program and nuclear nonproliferation, and how does it bode for the future of U.S.-Iran relations? We asked Belfer Center experts to weigh in on these and related questions.

Blog Post - Iran Matters

4 Myths about the Iran Sanctions

| July 11, 2015

Graham Allison, Director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and Gary Samore, Director of Research at the Belfer Center, identify inThe National Interest four myths about the sanctions structure on Iran due to its nuclear program. Specifically, they argue that not all sanctions on Iran will be removed after a nuclear deal, that the sanctions are not clearly delineated between "nuclear" and "non-nuclear" related sanctions, that some sanctions on Iran such as a conventional arms embargo and targeting the Iranian ballistic missile program are not closely linked to the nuclear program but are addressing areas of continuing concern for the United States, and that in a final agreement many sanctions may be lifted, but will not be permanently removed, as they are codified in Congressional legislation.

US Secretary of State John Kerry (right) and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif meet in Paris to discuss the Iranian nuclear deal.

United States Department of State

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Assessing an Iran Deal: 5 Big Lessons from History

| July 7, 2015

As the policy community prepares to assess an agreement between the U.S. and its P5+1 partners and Iran, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker asked me to review the history of analogous agreements for lessons that illuminate the current challenge. In response to his assignment, I reviewed the seven decades of the nuclear era, during which the U.S. negotiated arms-control treaties, including the Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1968; strategic arms limitation talks and agreements from SALT to New Start; the North Korean accord of 1994; the agreements that helped eliminate nuclear weapons in Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus in the early 1990s; and the pact that eliminated the Libyan nuclear weapons program in 2003.

Among many lessons and clues from this instructive history, five stand out

Analysis & Opinions - The Boston Globe

Fidel Castro at Harvard: How History Might Have Changed

| April 25, 2015

FIFTY-SIX YEARS ago today, in 1959, a 32-year-old victorious revolutionary named Fidel Castro arrived at Back Bay Station to face a raucous crowd of 5,000 Bostonians.

Graham Allison writes in the Boston Globe that Castro was headed to Harvard, his last stop on a 12-day trip along the East Coast....Castro’s visit aroused so much excitement that Harvard had no auditorium large enough to host his speech. So the Harvard football stadium was converted into an amphitheater.

"The social sciences rarely allow for controlled experiments where we can test initiatives for cause and effect," Allison writes. "But occasionally the world around us offers its own clues. Is it accidental that the two states that have persisted the longest as bastions of Stalinist authoritarianism are the two that the US has most harshly isolated and sanctioned: North Korea and Cuba?"

Blog Post - Iran Matters

Belfer Center Scholars Consider Potential Effects of A Failure of Negotiations with Iran

| Mar. 04, 2015

What could happen if the Iranian nuclear talks fail?

Along with President Obama, four members of the Belfer Center's Iran Working Group--Graham Allison, Nader Habibi, Payam Mohseni, and William Tobey--answer the vital question of what scenarios are possible if the negotiations fail, both sides declare diplomacy finished, and the commitments from the interim Joint Plan of Action are voided. 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Policy Conference in Washington, Monday, March 2, 2015.

(AP Photo)

Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

Iran Already Has Nuclear Weapons Capability

| March 3, 2015

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in Washington this week to try to sell members of Congress a false dichotomy. In nuclear negotiations with Iran, he will argue that the United States faces a choice between a “good deal” and a “bad deal.” He will urge Congress to stop President Barack Obama from accepting the latter which, he will say, “endangers the existence of the state of Israel.”

Buyer beware. Every serious analyst of this issue — including the prime minister — knows that this is a false dichotomy.

How to Solve the Ukraine Crisis

U.S. Dept. of State

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

How to Solve the Ukraine Crisis

| June 6, 2014

Amid heightened fighting in eastern Ukraine this week, with separatist rebels gaining control of several checkpoints along the Russian border as well as various military bases in Luhansk, few observers are forecasting a peaceful resolution to the conflict anytime soon. Yet even as President Obama and Putin trade warnings alongside D-Day anniversary commemorations, the terms of an eventual agreement are not difficult to imagine.