Since the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Europeans have reflected on the transatlantic relationship they’ve known  for over seven decades, and which now seems to be at risk. Guided by an “America First” rhetoric, a transactional approach to U.S. foreign policy and potential U.S. disengagement from key international institutions, President Donald Trump is forcing Europe to …Read More

When German Chancellor Angela Merkel has her first face-to-face meeting with President Trump in Washington on March 17,* she will have two key tests. Can she take the sting out of the burden sharing debate between the United States and Europe in NATO? And can the U.S. and Germany find common ground on trade policy, an …Read More

It is said that Mark Twain once commented, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.” Maybe a more accurate version is that history doesn’t repeat itself, but people often do—for better or for worse.

The Munich Security Conference this year was as much about who was in the main hall at the Bayerischer Hof, as who wasn’t. Lurking in the shadows of empty words about supporting an alliance that is in truth unraveling, were 4.9 million Syrian refugees who have been displaced and killed, with 5,079 migrants dying in …Read More

The seventieth anniversaries in 2015 of the end of World War II and the Holocaust have generated renewed interest in reconciliation and the question of whether the German and European experience holds lessons for Japan and East Asia. Much of the thinking on comparative lessons, developed in the last fifteen years, has focused on an idealized notion of Germany’s successful international reconciliation.

This text was originally presented at a public lecture at the  University of Pretoria, South Africa, on February 15, 2017. Introduction One might reasonably ask what is actually special about Donald Trump and the Trump presidency. After all, it is not populism in public office that is new. Neither is Donald Trump the first narcissist …Read More

The idea of “global economic order” may sound far away from the concerns of the average citizen, but it means something both simple and important: that it is better for trade, investment, and other forms of commercial activity to take place according to agreed-upon rules, and that those rules should reflect the principles of the United States, Germany, and other liberal economies in Europe, Latin America, and Asia. “Liberal” in this case signifying not a position on a right-left political spectrum, but rather a set of ideas that encompasses the rule of law, openness to change, and the primacy of the individual vs. state authority.

In January, Germany’s Federal Statistical Office (Statistisches Bundesamt) announced that the country’s population is likely growing again—a direct result of an increase in immigration since 2012.  The latest preliminary survey results indicate that approximately 82.8 million people lived in Germany at the end of 2016. This is an increase of 0.6 million compared to the …Read More

It is not the first time the Bundeswehr is engaged in the Baltic States. For a number of years, the German air force has participated as a rotating member in NATO’s Baltic Air Policing mission. But the new presence of the Bundeswehr in the German-led NATO battalion marks a sea change in German security policy: …Read More

In the summer of 2014, Stephen Bannon gave a talk at the Institute for Human Dignity in Rome via Skype saying that “we are in an outright war against jihadist Islamic fascism. And this war is […] metastasizing far quicker than governments can handle it.”[1] Bannon is now the Chief Strategist for President Donald Trump …Read More

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