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The Persistence of Global Imbalances

By Carmen Reinhart JACKSON HOLE, WYOMING – The primary focus of this year’s Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, which convenes the world’s leading central bankers, was not explicitly monetary policy. Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s opening remarks emphasized the changes in regulatory policy that followed Read more…

The Balkans Between Competing Poles

By Javier Solana MADRID – Few world regions are more culturally and politically complex than the Balkans. And there may be no clearer illustration of the region’s freighted past and present than the life and legacy of one of its exceptional sons: the physicist and inventor Nikola Tesla. Born into Read more…

The Achilles Heel of Putin’s Regime

By Anders Åslund WASHINGTON, DC – Russian President Vladimir Putin’s authority is weaker than it seems. In fact, the bedrock of Putin’s power – the clientelist economic arrangements that he has assiduously consolidated over the past generation – has become the main threat to his political survival. The reason is Read more…

Valg i Tyskland

Germany’s New Power of the Purse

[:en] By Mark Leonard BERLIN – Last week, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel interrupted his holiday on the North Sea to respond to Turkey’s jailing of a German human-rights activist. Gabriel warned German tourists about the dangers of visiting Turkey, and advised German firms to think twice before investing in Read more…

Liberal Democracy in Poland

Kaczyński’s Threat to Europe

By Jacek Rostowski ROME – Poland’s President Andrzej Duda has vetoed two of three bills that would have given Jarosław Kaczyński, leader of the far-right Law and Justice Party (PiS), total control of the country’s judiciary. But, despite Duda’s veto, the threat to democracy and the rule of law posed Read more…

One Hundred Years of Indebtedness

By Carmen Reinhart CAMBRIDGE – Gabriel Garcia Márquez, the Nobel laureate novelist most famous for One Hundred Years of Solitude, was native to Colombia. Nonetheless, as a master of magical realism, Garcia Márquez would have appreciated the Republic of Argentina’s recent combination of fact and fantasy. In mid-June, the finance Read more…

Russia’s Oligarchs-in-Waiting

By Anders Åslund STOCKHOLM – Under President Vladimir Putin, cronyism has replaced Russia’s once-burgeoning capitalism. If Putin lives by any motto, it is this: “To my friends, anything; for my enemies, the law.” In his 2000 “autobiography,” First Person, Putin reveals what “counts most” to him. “I have a lot Read more…

Poland’s Immoral Refugee Policy

By Sławomir Sierakowski WARSAW – On June 13, the European Commission filed a lawsuit against Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary, accusing them of violating European Union law by refusing to admit refugees. The next day, Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydło gave a speech at the site of the Auschwitz Read more…

Revisiting the Global Order

By Javier Solana MADRID – As many analysts have observed, the Pax Americana of recent decades is on life support. After the first 150 days of Donald Trump’s “America First” – or, more accurately, “America Alone” – presidency, it seems that America’s traditional stabilizing role can no longer be viewed Read more…

Xi Jinping’s Marco Polo Strategy

By Joseph S. Nye, Jr. CAMBRIDGE – Last month, Chinese President Xi Jinping presided over a heavily orchestrated “Belt and Road” forum in Beijing. The two-day event attracted 29 heads of state, including Russia’s Vladimir Putin, and 1,200 delegates from over 100 countries. Xi called China’s Belt and Road Initiative Read more…