There is a well-known warning to all politicians seeking to sound convincing to their audiences: if you have to explain too much, you are losing them. If there are too many ambiguities in a message, you trip yourself up justifying them. The platform of the Munich Security Conference is a tough testing ground for all politicians given the enormous concentration on what is discussed there. This year’s meeting was no exception.

The election of Donald Trump threatens to radically change the parameters of German foreign policy that go back to the foundation of the Federal Republic in 1949. Germany has benefited from a particular configuration of the liberal international order in which the United States provided security and acted as a consumer of last resort. During …Read More

Few issues stir more concerns—and confusion—about where the Trump administration is heading than relations with Russia. Several Cabinet secretaries, during their confirmation hearings and subsequent statements, voiced strong support for maintaining sanctions on Russia and providing lethal assistance for Ukraine, and cited Russia as a major threat to U.S. interests. Those views, however, clash with …Read More

The Munich Security Conference convenes at a time of the great unraveling of the world order.   The world is less stable and more uncertain than it has been for years. Conflicts and crises rage across Europe, the Middle East, and Asia from Ukraine and Syria to ISIL, and in the South China Sea.  The rise …Read More

With U.S. President Donald Trump poised to pull the United States back from global leadership and with the United Kingdom mired in a messy withdrawal from the European Union, Germany has emerged as the central economic and political power in Europe. Since German President Joachim Gauck’s much-lauded speech at the Munich Security Conference in 2014—“Let …Read More

Hardly any economist would have disagreed if Peter Navarro, new chief trade adviser to President Trump, had just restated the standard textbook wisdom: that a common currency cannot fit well the diverging needs of economies that are hit by asymmetric shocks. But Mr. Navarro’s statement was significantly more original, claiming that Germany is using a …Read More

President Trump’s first days in the White House has generated chaos and fear with his controversial travel ban targeting seven predominately Muslim Middle Eastern countries. Intended as a swift measure by the new U.S. administration to combat international terrorism, the policy not only sparked fierce debate about its impact, with some experts suggesting the ban serves …Read More

President Donald Trump’s sexist remarks made during the 2016 campaign, such as calling a former Miss Universe winner “Miss Piggy” or alluding to a female reporter’s menstrual cycle, have caused him to lose favor with many members of the opposite sex. However, the Women’s March that took place on his first day in office was …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. Over the past seventy years, German and American leadership has been defined by shared interests and objectives. Despite any number …Read More

As Donald Trump’s inauguration approaches, people around the world are struggling to understand the inhabitants of the newest Trump Tower, the one at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC. To comprehend the novel scene, they should view Mr Trump as an independent, not as a Republican. Other celebrity billionaires have tried to compete with America’s political …Read More

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