Backgrounder posted June 6, 2013
EU Defense Integration: Undermining NATO, Transatlantic Relations, and Europe’s Security
When it comes to defense and military capability in the 21st century, it is clear that Europe is not pulling its weight. Spending and investment in defense across Europe has steadily declined since the end of the Cold War. The political will to deploy troops into harm’s way when it is in the national interest has all but evaporated for most EU countries. During the recent…
Issue Brief posted June 5, 2013
The U.S. Should Back Montenegro’s NATO Membership
Montenegro, a small but geopolitically important Balkan nation, has made steady progress in its path toward NATO membership since it formally began a Membership Action Plan (MAP) in 2009. As one of the four official NATO-aspirant countries and currently in the third cycle of the MAP, Montenegro has made and continues to make significant reforms that are essential for NATO…
Issue Brief posted May 23, 2013
Withdrawing U.S. Forces from Europe Weakens America
In the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2013, the House of Representatives passed an amendment that called for the removal of all four U.S. Army Brigade Combat Teams (BCTs) currently based in Europe. It is likely that a similar amendment will be considered in the upcoming FY 2014 NDAA.
The sponsors of the amendment, Representatives Mike…
Issue Brief posted May 20, 2013
U.N. Arms Trade Treaty: U.S. Decision to Sign Treaty Shows Review Process Was Rushed
On May 15, Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Countryman stated that the U.S. would sign the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) “in the very near future.” The treaty opens for signature at the United Nations on June 3.
The fact that this decision was announced only six weeks after the treaty was negotiated shows that the U.S. rushed its internal review process. Before it…
Issue Brief posted May 16, 2013
U.N. Human Rights Experts: More Transparency and Accountability Required
Recent statements by United Nations Human Rights Council Special Rapporteur Richard Falk rekindled a debate over how such experts should be held accountable when their behavior violates the conduct expected of them. Moreover, the scrutiny elicited by Falk’s statements has exposed the fact that funding for special procedures deserves more transparency, especially regarding…
Issue Brief posted May 10, 2013
On Hezbollah, the U.S. Should Work Around the EU
The European Union (EU) has repeatedly failed to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. This failure makes Europeans and the Euro-Atlantic region less safe. It also shows the EU’s shortcomings when it comes to agreeing on common positions and demonstrates why individual European countries need to develop their own policies regarding national security.
Issue Brief posted May 10, 2013
In Meeting with Cameron, Obama Should Advance the U.S.–U.K. Special Relationship
President Barack Obama will host British Prime Minister David Cameron at the White House on May 13. Publicly, it has been announced that the visit will be dominated by events in Syria, economic cooperation, countering terrorism, and priorities for the next meeting of the G-8.
Privately, David Cameron is likely to raise a number of sensitive issues, such as the U.S.…
Issue Brief posted May 7, 2013
European Court Errs in Decision on Terrorist Suspect Extradition
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has given an interim ruling that Britain cannot extradite Haroon Aswat to the United States. Aswat has been indicted in the U.S. on conspiracy charges related to the establishment of a terrorist training camp for radical Islamists in Bly, Oregon, in 1999.
By this decision, the ECHR, unless its decision is overturned, will have…
Issue Brief posted April 30, 2013
U.S. Should Oppose Return to U.N. Peace Enforcement
The U.N. Security Council recently adopted resolutions to create an “intervention brigade” to supplement the U.N. Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) and to establish the U.N. Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
The Security Council’s approval of the Mali mission where there is no peace to…
Special Report posted April 29, 2013
Britain and Europe: Where America’s Interests Really Lie
The United States has a strong and continuing interest in a prosperous and stable Europe, but the policies and pronouncements of President Barack Obama and the U.S. Department of State are making that goal less, not more, attainable. This is especially true as regards current, very public U.S. pressure on Britain to stay inside the European Union, apparently…