Policy Series: America and the World-2017 and Beyond (Introduction)

The election of a new President typically offers an opportunity to reflect upon the state of international relations and America’s role in the world.  This would have been especially true of the 2016 election no matter who won: as former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger recently claimed, many believe that for the first time since 1945 the United States’ relations with the world are unsettled.[1] The unexpected election of Donald Trump only heightens the sense of uncertainty about the future of America’s global role.  While much is unknown about President Trump’s foreign policy views, many of his campaign statements are at odds with long-standing American traditions and policies.

H-Diplo | ISSF
POLICY Series
America and the World – 2017 and Beyond

Published on 2 January 2017 | issforum.org

A production of H-Diplo with the journals Security Studies, International Security, Journal of Strategic Studies, and the International Studies Association’s Security Studies Section (ISSS).

H-Diplo/ISSF Editors:  Robert Jervis, Francis Gavin, Joshua Rovner, and Diane Labrosse
H-Diplo/ISSF Web and Production Editor:  George Fujii

Shortlink:  tiny.cc/PR-1-5A
Permalink:  http://issforum.org/roundtables/policy/1-5A-policy-series-introduction
PDF URL:  http://issforum.org/ISSF/PDF/Policy-Roundtable-1-5A.pdf

The election of a new President typically offers an opportunity to reflect upon the state of international relations and America’s role in the world.  This would have been especially true of the 2016 election no matter who won: as former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger recently claimed, many believe that for the first time since 1945 the United States’ relations with the world are unsettled.[1] The unexpected election of Donald Trump only heightens the sense of uncertainty about the future of America’s global role.  While much is unknown about President Trump’s foreign policy views, many of his campaign statements are at odds with long-standing American traditions and policies.

As part of its new Policy Roundtable Series, the International Security Studies Forum will be publishing a rolling series of analyses.  What do diplomatic history and international relations theory tell us about the future of the U.S. in the world?  What tools and insights can the H-Diplo/ISSF community provide to make sense of this evolving situation?  What assumptions about a range of topics – including alliances, multilateralism, nuclear policy, regional dynamics, international law, civil-military affairs, escalation, human rights, globalization, etc – may be found wanting and in need of further reflection and scholarship in the aftermath of the election?  We do not seek instant analyses of the election or speculation about the Trump administration’s likely course. Instead, we seek to put the election in historical and theoretical context.

We are pleased to launch the series with an essay from Robert Jervis.  Further essays will be commissioned from a wide range of scholars and policymakers.  We also welcome your suggestions.

Robert Jervis, Francis Gavin, Joshua Rovner, and Diane Labrosse

© Copyright 2017 The Authors

 

Notes

[1] Jeffrey Goldberg, “The Lessons of Henry Kissinger,” The Atlantic (December 2016), http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/12/the-lessons-of-henry-kissinger/505868/