Madeleine K. Albright

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Putin Is Making a Historic Mistake

A principios del año 2000, cuando Vladimir Putin llegó a la presidencia interina de Rusia, fui la primera alta funcionaria estadounidense en reunirse con él. En ese momento, al interior del gobierno de Bill Clinton, no sabíamos mucho de él, solo que había comenzado su carrera en la KGB, la agencia de inteligencia soviética. Esperaba que la reunión me ayudara a tomar la medida del hombre y evaluar lo que su ascenso repentino podría significar para las relaciones entre Estados Unidos y Rusia, que se habían deteriorado en medio de la guerra en Chechenia. Sentada frente a él en una pequeña mesa en el Kremlin, me llamó la atención de inmediato el contraste entre Putin y su predecesor grandilocuente, Boris Yeltsin.…  Seguir leyendo »

Putin Is Making a Historic Mistake

In early 2000, I became the first senior U.S. official to meet with Vladimir Putin in his new capacity as acting president of Russia. We in the Clinton administration did not know much about him at the time — just that he had started his career in the K.G.B. I hoped the meeting would help me take the measure of the man and assess what his sudden elevation might mean for U.S.-Russia relations, which had deteriorated amid the war in Chechnya. Sitting across a small table from him in the Kremlin, I was immediately struck by the contrast between Mr. Putin and his bombastic predecessor, Boris Yeltsin.…  Seguir leyendo »

One month into his administration, President Joe Biden faces a daunting set of domestic and international crises. As Covid-19 continues to spread around the world, America's allies are also counting on the Biden administration to restore leadership, credibility and international partnerships as part of US foreign policy.

Among the many challenges Biden must tackle is the rapidly deteriorating situation in Afghanistan. Following the Trump administration's agreement with the Taliban last February, a wave of orchestrated assassinations targeting civilians has besieged Afghanistan in recent months.

Journalists, human rights activists, doctors, civil servants, judges, religious leaders and teachers have been injured and killed in a string of attacks.…  Seguir leyendo »

La comunidad internacional necesita con urgencia nuevas herramientas, ideas e iniciativas para encarar las amenazas y desafíos comunes a los que se enfrentan los 193 países miembros de las Naciones Unidas. El 75º aniversario de esta organización mundial, que se celebra el 24 de octubre, Día de las Naciones Unidas, brinda la oportunidad para trazar un camino con dirección hacia las alianzas que necesitamos forjar para hacer frente a los desafíos que afrontaremos en los años y décadas por venir. A raíz de la pandemia de COVID-19 – la crisis más costosa y de mayor alcance desde la Segunda Guerra Mundial – se hace evidente la necesidad de una renovación y recuperación de la institución.…  Seguir leyendo »

In 1956, András Gróf decided to start walking. At 20, he had survived Hungarian fascism, Nazi occupation, and the invasion of the Soviet Red Army. To escape the crossfire of a bloody counterrevolution, he walked from Budapest to Vienna, where he reached the offices of the International Rescue Committee (IRC): an organization founded by Albert Einstein to help people fleeing violence and persecution.

The IRC put Gróf on a boat to the United States. When he arrived at Ellis Island, he took the name Andy Grove.

Andy Grove went on to become co-founder and CEO of Intel. He is recognized today as one of the people who profoundly shaped Silicon Valley and the digital transformation of the world economy.…  Seguir leyendo »

La crise des réfugiés et des migrants que connaît l’Europe est une catastrophe humanitaire imputable aux guerres civiles qui frappent le Moyen-Orient et aux défaillances institutionnelles de l’Occident. Le climat politique devient cauchemardesque, les nationalistes de toute l’Europe exploitant la peur des réfugiés pour affaiblir l’Union européenne et critiquant les valeurs de démocratie libérale qu’elle représente.

La situation est d’autant plus inquiétante que cette stratégie semble fonctionner. Depuis un an, l’Europe est déchirée et paralysée par la crise humanitaire qui échoue sur ses côtes. L’UE n’inspire plus confiance, tandis que le populisme séduit de plus en plus.

A l’heure où le continent est confronté à des défis majeurs, notamment la politique agressive de la Russie en Orient, la crise de la dette et l’éventualité d’un « Brexit », l’Europe doit prendre un tournant si elle ne veut pas mettre son avenir en péril.…  Seguir leyendo »

I teach my students that foreign policy is persuading other countries to do what you want. The tools available to accomplish this include everything from kind words to cruise missiles. Mixing them properly and with sufficient patience is the art of diplomacy, a task that for the United States has proved challenging even with our closest allies, and altogether necessary with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The United States and Iran have been locked in an adversarial relationship since the 1979 hostage crisis. Having worked for President Jimmy Carter, I viewed the country through the prism of that experience when I served in the Clinton administration.…  Seguir leyendo »

When President Obama and European allies meet next week, they can begin forming a meaningful response to Vladi­mir Putin’s adventurism. This new strategy should note that Putin’s view of the world is rooted in dangerous fictions.

Churchill said Russia was a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. Under Putin, Russia’s rhetoric can be described as a fantasy inside a delusion wrapped in a tissue of lies. He may believe that Ukrainians are fascists intending to attack Russians, but it is not true. Ukraine’s interim government is widely representative, and no outside observer has found evidence of a campaign of violence against Russians.…  Seguir leyendo »

The recent experience of “reset” in Russian-American relations is remarkable in at least two ways. On the one hand, it demonstrated that, given the political commitment of both presidents, the two sides can accomplish a lot within a short time span. On the other hand, this experience confirmed that the relationship between our countries remains vulnerable to shifting political winds and passing policy differences, as we are currently witnessing.

The challenge we face at the beginning of 2013 is not to preserve reset, but to move beyond it. The time has come to turn the page and to address the realities of the 21st century.…  Seguir leyendo »

This weekend, Chicago plays host to the leaders of NATO, the world's strongest and most successful alliance. During the summit, the first held in the United States outside of Washington, President Barack Obama and his counterparts from Canada and 26 European nations will discuss a range of urgent security challenges. These include the dangers posed by an increasingly desperate al-Qaida, violent extremism based in Afghanistan and parts of Pakistan, Iran's nuclear program, turbulence in the Middle East and the rising threat of cybersabotage.

Although founded in 1949 to confront Soviet totalitarianism, the alliance has always been defined more by what it defends — democracy, security and the rule of law — than by what it is against.…  Seguir leyendo »

On April 8, 2010 Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitry Medvedev met to sign the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). The treaty entered into force in February, and the sides have already exchanged data on their forces.

We should build on this momentum and take new actions to reduce nuclear risk and shape a safer world.

First, the United States and Russia should initiate early negotiations to further reduce their strategic arms. New START permits each side up to 1,550 deployed strategic warheads. They could negotiate to reduce that level to 1,000 deployed strategic warheads — with corresponding cuts in strategic missiles and bombers — which would leave each with more than enough to assure its security.…  Seguir leyendo »

The Senate should promptly vote to approve the New Strategic Arms Reductions Treaty (New START) with Russia for one reason: It increases U.S. national security. This is precisely why Defense Secretary Robert Gates declared at the outset of Senate consideration of the treaty that it has "the unanimous support of America's military leadership."

The treaty reduces and caps the Russian nuclear arsenal. It reestablishes and makes stronger the verification procedures that allow U.S. inspectors to conduct on-site inspections and surveillance of Russian nuclear weapons and facilities. It strengthens international efforts to prevent nuclear terrorism, and it opens the door to progress on further critical nonproliferation efforts, such as reducing Russian tactical nuclear weapons.…  Seguir leyendo »

Over the next few weeks, the Opinion section will publish a series of Op-Ed articles by experts on the challenges facing Barack Obama Barack Obama when he takes office. Military reform and potential foreign policy pitfalls is the focus of today’s articles.

1) Let Russia Stop Iran. A grand bargain on missle defense.

2) A Lean War Machine. A key to a better military: spend less.

3) Financial Time Bombs. How to prepare for economic terrorism.

4) Never Again, for Real. Ending genocide would help protect America.

5) The Syrian Strategy. Can a weak dictator bring Mideast peace?

6) How To Win Islam Over. Obama's 'Muslim summit' is a bad idea.

Some we see; others remain invisible to us. Some have names and faces; others we do not know. They are the victims of genocide and mass atrocities, their numbers too staggering to count.

This month was the 60th anniversary of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. It has been 20 years since the United States became a party to the treaty. Despite six decades of efforts to prevent and halt systematic campaigns of massacres, forced displacements and mass rapes, such atrocities persist. Why are we still lacking the necessary institutions, policies and strategies?

It is not because the public doesn’t care.…  Seguir leyendo »

Estimado presidente electo:

Enhorabuena por su éxito. ¡Lo ha hecho muy bien! Ha obtenido usted una victoria impresionante, pero dicha victoria conlleva la responsabilidad de guiar a un Estados Unidos con enormes problemas y con un mundo dividido por los conflictos, la confusión y el odio.

Al tomar posesión de su cargo, se enfrentará a la apabullante tarea de restaurar la credibilidad de EEUU como líder mundial, eficaz y ejemplar. Esto no puede conseguirlo limitándose a distanciarse, usted y su Gobierno, de los errores cometidos por George W. Bush. Debe ofrecer estrategias innovadoras para enfrentarse a múltiples peligros, entre ellos el hundimiento de la economía mundial, dos guerras en auge (Irak y Afganistán), Al Qaeda, las amenazas nucleares y el cambio climático.…  Seguir leyendo »

La respuesta criminalmente negligente del Gobierno de Birmania al ciclón del mes pasado y la reacción del mundo a esa respuesta ilustran tres desalentadoras realidades de nuestros días: los gobiernos totalitarios siguen ahí tan campantes, sus vecinos son reacios a presionarlos para que cambien y la noción de soberanía nacional como algo sagrado está ganando terreno, ayudada no en pequeña medida por los resultados desastrosos de la invasión de Irak por EEUU. De hecho, muchas de las intervenciones necesarias en la década anterior a esta invasión, en lugares como Haití y los Balcanes, parecerían imposibles en el ambiente hoy reinante.

La primera realidad, y la más obvia, es la supervivencia de gobiernos totalitarios en una era de comunicaciones globales y progreso democrático.…  Seguir leyendo »

The Burmese government’s criminally neglectful response to last month’s cyclone, and the world’s response to that response, illustrate three grim realities today: totalitarian governments are alive and well; their neighbors are reluctant to pressure them to change; and the notion of national sovereignty as sacred is gaining ground, helped in no small part by the disastrous results of the American invasion of Iraq. Indeed, many of the world’s necessary interventions in the decade before the invasion — in places like Haiti and the Balkans — would seem impossible in today’s climate.

The first and most obvious reality is the survival of totalitarian government in an age of global communications and democratic progress.…  Seguir leyendo »

I believe the most precious gift the next president could bestow upon America is an end to the politics of fear.

Fear, of course, has its place. Seven decades ago, the world did not fear Hitler enough. Today, Iraq remains a powder keg, Afghanistan a struggle, Iran a potential danger and North Korea a puzzle not yet solved. Pakistan combines all the elements that give us an international migraine. Al-Qaeda and its offshoots deserve our most urgent attention, because when people say they want to kill us, we would be fools not to take them at their word.

Still, we have had an overdose of fear in recent times.…  Seguir leyendo »

La pregunta decisiva en cualquier guerra es: ¿por qué estamos luchando? Y los soldados norteamericanos necesitan una respuesta convincente en el caso de Irak. En ese país son varios los objetivos con los que se ha tratado de justificar nuestra presencia, sin conseguirlo nunca: protegernos de las armas de destrucción masiva, crear una democracia que fuese un modelo para el mundo árabe, castigar a los responsables de los atentados del 11-S, impedir que otros terroristas se subieran al próximo avión hacia Nueva York... El objetivo más reciente, la justificación para el refuerzo de tropas de este año, era dar a los dirigentes iraquíes la seguridad y el margen de maniobra necesarios para que tomaran decisiones políticas estabilizadoras, cosa por la que han mostrado poco interés.…  Seguir leyendo »

The threshold question in any war is: What are we fighting for? Our troops, especially, deserve a convincing answer.

In Iraq, the list of missions that were tried on but didn't fit includes: protection from weapons of mass destruction, creating a model democracy in the Arab world, punishing those responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks and stopping terrorists from catching the next plane to New York. The latest mission, linked to the "surge" of troops this year, was to give Iraqi leaders the security and maneuvering room needed to make stabilizing political arrangements -- which they have thus far shown little interest in doing.…  Seguir leyendo »