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Council on Foreign Relations
The Lengthening List of Iran Sanctions

IntroductionWith concern in the West mounting over Iran's nuclear ambitions, some lawmakers and policy advocates are pushing for a fresh round of sanctions aimed at halting Tehran's uranium-enrichment program. In March 2009, President Barack Obama, like President George W. Bush and President Bill Clinton before...

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Twenty Agendas at G-20, Part II

Heads of state and government from the Group of Twenty (G-20) advanced economies meet in the U.S. city of Pittsburgh on Sept. 24-25 to discuss continuing efforts at coordinating action to combat the global economic crisis. The meeting builds on summits held in Washington in...

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The Purpose of the Afghan War

The publication of the confidential U.S. strategy review in Afghanistan in today's Washington Post affirms what is already largely known--U.S. military commanders are worried about the course of the war and are signaling the need for thousands more troops. But the assessment from Gen. Stanley...

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The Role of the UN General Assembly

IntroductionSince its inception more than sixty years ago, the United Nations General Assembly has been a forum for lofty declarations, sometimes audacious rhetoric, and debate over the world's most vexing issues, from poverty to peace and security. In the 2009 session, attention will likely focus...

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Conditioning a U.S.-Iranian Dialogue

President Barack Obama has confirmed a willingness to press ahead with negotiations to try to end the standoff over Tehran's nuclear program. Talks between the United States, Iran, and world powers are scheduled for October 1, possibly in Turkey (Reuters). And while the Islamic Republic...

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Iran's Nuclear Program

IntroductionIran's leaders have worked to pursue nuclear energy technology since the 1950s, spurred by the launch of U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Atoms for Peace program. It made steady progress, with Western help, through the early 1970s. But concern over Iranian intentions followed by the...

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Ill Trade Winds with Beijing

The Obama administration's decision to levy tariffs of up to 35 percent on imported Chinese tires and Beijing's threats of reprisal against some U.S. products have raised concerns about a sudden escalation of protectionism between two of the world's largest economies.Roughly 17 percent of tires...

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The African Union

IntroductionThe African Union (AU), formed in 2002 from the vestiges of the Organization for African Unity (OAU), aims to protect the security of the continent, rather than the sovereignty of individual states. Though the AU still is struggling to reform its governing bodies, it plays...

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Rethinking Afghanistan

From the start of his presidency, Barack Obama has promised more troops for Afghanistan and called for a new direction in the way the conflict is being waged. This week, his top commander laid the groundwork for a new military strategy (VOA), which could see...

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