Quincy Institute: 10 foreign policy questions that should be asked at the presidential debate (but probably won’t)

Kelley Beaucar Vlahos would ask: While many among the establishment would like to continue on this status quo path – focused on Russia as an enemy and a geopolitical threat – others are pressing for a change, acknowledging that diplomacy, not military or economic warfare, is the path forward in a multipolar world. Where do each of you stand on the matter?

Aaron Mate: Nuclear extortion: Trump admin stalls US-Russia treaty talks, threatening new arms race

The Trump administration is running out the clock on talks with Russia over renewing New START, the last treaty limiting the nuclear weapons arsenals of both countries. Russia has proposed an unconditional extension, but the US has stalled the talks and demanded new conditions – even issuing an ultimatum that the “price of admission” will go up after the November U.S. election.

Alexandra Bell: What the presidential candidates should be asked about arms control and nonproliferation

Whether President Trump or one of his challengers is sworn in as president on January 20, 2021, he or she will have the complete and unchecked authority to order the use of the approximately 4,000 nuclear weapons in the active US stockpile.

Matt Purple: Hawkish Republicans Set To Bury Trump’s Afghan Ambassador Nominee

The Senate is about to wade neck-deep into a confirmation battle over a Supreme Court nominee. But even as their calendar jams up, they shouldn’t forget another important executive appointment: Will Ruger, nominated by Donald Trump to be the new ambassador to Afghanistan. Ruger is a board member and longtime friend of The American Conservative. A Naval Reserve officer, a realist on foreign policy, a foe of idiotic wars, his elevation was viewed as a statement that the president is committed to bringing the troops home from Afghanistan.

Four Elegies

Time has taken a tragic toll. Sherle Schwenninger died in the middle of last week. As we were reeling from that loss, Stephen F. Cohen left us on Friday. The attached are recollections of the two great American originals by their friends Peter Kaufman, Marshall Auerback, James Carden and Patrick Lawrence.

Katrina vanden Heuvel: A personal recollection of Stephen F. Cohen

He was courageous and fearless in continuing to question the increasingly rigid orthodoxies about the Soviet Union and Russia. But in the last months, such criticism did take its toll on him. Along with others who sought to avert a new and more dangerous Cold War, Steve despaired that the public debate so desperately needed had become increasingly impossible in mainstream politics or media.

Yanni Kotsonis on his NYU colleague Stephen Cohen

Over time US media attention on Russia declined. And while many of us went quiet, Steve persisted and sought that national audience just about anywhere he could find it. By the 2010s, the problem was not simply that media attention had declined; any new attention was vapid and simplistic…It was hard to have a conversation about Russia without centering it on Putin; from 2016, Russia was only about election interference.

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