This Week in Geopolitics, August 2017

Skepticism of Experts and the End of Libor

August 28, 2017

For decades, the public generally placed its trust in technocrats, the people perceived to be skillful and knowledgeable managers of economically and politically important institutions (including banks). The thinking was that aspects of the economy and politics had become too complex for ordinary citizens to understand and that the best way to handle this complexity was to allow the experts to take over. The events of 2008–09 shattered that belief.

The US, North Korea, and the Lesser of Two Evils

August 21, 2017

Most US presidencies are defined by their foreign policies, and most foreign policies are defined by wars—those that were fought and those that weren’t.

North Korea’s Rational Analysis

August 14, 2017

The United States has several thousand operational nuclear missiles. It has a large fleet of strategic bombers, an enormous navy, and hundreds of thousands of soldiers and marines. The US could bomb, blockade, and invade North Korea if it chose to incur the cost.

When Neutrality Isn’t an Option

August 7, 2017

The new US sanctions against Russia overwhelmingly passed Congress. But in parts of Europe, they are far less popular. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel last week called them “more than problematic.” In diplomatese, that means the Germans oppose them. The Association of European Businesses, a nonprofit that advocates on behalf of European businesses with interests in Russia, urged that politics and business be kept apart.