World Policy Newsletter, Week of January 22nd

Around the World

Where do we draw the line between free speech and dangerous speech? Amanda Dugan begins this conversation arguing that until we examine this issue more closely, the kind of incendiary rhetoric that gets a pass today will keep giving way to violence. Pauline Moullot continues the discussion in the French context, examining Marine Le Pen’s National Front and explaining that the party’s masking of racist and xenophobic sentiments makes supporting its far-right agenda more publicly acceptable.

Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, a peace settlement with the Taliban appears more realistic than ever following discussions between Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, and the U.S. Jonathan Power argues, however, that the Taliban’s present strength and desire for representation in government will make the path to peace difficult.

And finally, in this week’s episode of World Policy On Air, World Policy Journal editor Christopher Shay delves into the shifts in Latin America’s balance of power as countries respond to recent developments in the region, such as political scandal in Brazil and economic stagnation in Venezuela.

Around the Institute

The inaugural event in our new World Policy Security Series, led by WPI fellow Dr. Jonathan Cristol, will be a roundtable discussion featuring Dr. Wojtek Wolfe of the Foreign Policy Research Institute. In this off-the-record discussion, titled “Money, Oil, and Proxy Wars: Saudi Arabia’s Changing Status Quo,” Dr. Wolfe argues that policymakers need to prepare for multiple contingencies and a changing environment in both energy production and fiscal outflows. This event is by invitation only.

Can Democracies Develop Sound Foreign Policies? Please join us for the inaugural event of Los Angeles’ new research center and think tank, the World Policy Institute at Loyola Marymount University.‌‌ A distinguished panel discussion will feature four former U.S. ambassadors, Ambassador Alan Blinken, Ambassador Christopher Robert Hill, Ambassador Rockwell Schnabel, and Ambassador Derek Shearer. Fernando Guerra of Loyola Marymount University will moderate the discussion on diplomacy and the 2016 presidential election. The event will take place at Loyola Marymount University on Feb. 9, 2016 at 5:00pm. Register here.

On Feb. 11, 2016, World Policy Institute will begin its Cuban Reset Dialogues, a yearlong series that will feature leading figures in law, finance, and governance to assess the state of play in U.S.-Cuban reconciliation and trade. Pedro Freyre launches the series by addressing the evolving regulatory space and offering ground-level insight on the prospects for restored bilateral trade and investment. This event is by invitation only.

If you’d like to attend invitation-only events, please consider enrolling in the World Policy Membership Program today.


Fellow Updates

Jonathan Cristol appeared on CBC National News Tonight, discussing the recent prisoner exchange between the U.S. and Iran and the Obama administration’s handling of the Iran deal.

Erica Dingman writes for Arctic in Context about innovation in local renewable energy programs in Alaska, arguing that these projects can provide a testing ground for technologies that can be duplicated in other parts of the world.

Shaun Randol’s The Mantle published three books by Botswana playwright Donald Molosi, We Are All Blue (with a foreword by President Quett Masire), Blue, Black and White, and Motswana: Africa, Dream Again.



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[Photo courtesy of Blandine Le Cain]

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