Lessons from Asean infrastructure development

For fast-developing economies throughout the world, infrastructure holds the key to sustainable growth. Southeast Asia is no exception, particularly in light of the ambitious plan by the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations to launch an Economic Community at the end of 2015.

The rich have advantages that money cannot buy

With the popularity of Thomas Piketty’s book, Capital in the 21st Century, inequality has become central to the public debate over economic policy. Piketty, and much of this discussion, focuses on the sharp increases in the share of income and wealth going to the top 1 per cent, 0.1 per cent and 0.01 per cent of the population.

U.S. Needs To Plan For The Day After An Iran Deal

Advocates of the effort to reach a negotiated settlement with Iran over its illicit nuclear activities have emphasized the benefits an agreement could bring by peacefully and verifiably barring Tehran from developing nuclear weapons. Skeptics, meanwhile, have warned of the risks of a “bad deal,” under which Iran’s capabilities are not sufficiently rolled back.

Putin Sees China as a Gas-Hungry Ally

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping are likely to find they have more in common than ever as they meet this week, starting today in Shanghai for a Sino-Russian summit and later in St. Petersburg for an economic forum. Both men are coming under sharp criticism from the West: Putin for his annexation of Crimea and Xi for his forays into the contested waters of the South China Sea. For all the fascinating and potentially consequential strategic conversations that may take place between these two men, the one to look out for will be whether they conclude a much-delayed energy deal to pipe huge amounts of Russian natural gas to China starting in 2018.

The State of U.S. Power: Perceptions across the Globe

In December 2013, the Pew Research Center released data suggesting that Americans’ views of U.S. power and prestige abroad had reached a 40-year low. That poll came in the wake of the first releases of National Security Agency (NSA) documents by Edward Snowden and the August 2013 Syria crisis and amid heated battles in Washington over the federal budget. More recently, controversy over the adequacy of defense funding in the President’s FY2015 Budget Request and Russia’s annexation of Crimea have renewed concern about how the United States is perceived beyond its borders. Kathleen Hicks, senior vice president, Henry A. Kissinger Chair, and International Security Program director at CSIS, recently sat down with some of CSIS’s most prominent regional scholars to discuss foreign views of the United States and practical steps we can take to improve U.S. standing in the world. Joining her were Ernest Bower, senior adviser and Sumitro Chair for Southeast Asia Studies; Heather Conley, senior fellow and director, Europe Program; Jennifer Cooke, director, Africa Program; Andrew Kuchins, senior fellow and director, Russia and Eurasia Program; Carl Meacham, director, Americas Program; and Richard Rossow, senior fellow and Wadhwani Chair in U.S.-India Policy Studies.

Resetting U.S.-Egyptian Relations

In the four decades since U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Egypt’s president Anwar Sadat ended Egypt’s two decades of close relations with the Soviet Union, U.S.-Egypt relations have never seen a more negative trajectory than that experienced during the past eight months. News this week that a court in Egypt has sentenced 528 members of the Muslim Brotherhood to death will likely further exacerbate the crisis. Increasingly, the reaction of U.S. opinion and decision makers to this downturn in Egypt-U.S relations is a mix of despair and abandonment. Thus, many in DC—in the administration, in Congress, and in the media—seem to have “given up” on Egypt.

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