Cambridge, Massachusetts, March 28, 2019
By now it is widely accepted that U.S. influence in the Middle East is in something approaching freefall. The Arab uprisings of 2011 overthrew the governments in Tunis, Egypt, and Yemen, stimulated bloody miscalculations by both the Syrian government and its opposition, and destabilized Bahrain.
I’m here at your kind invitation to discuss China, how bad our relations with it may get, and how the contest we’ve initiated with China is likely to play out. Let me take a minute or two to set the context for this discussion.
Ladies and Gentlemen:
We are only beginning to understand the slowly unfolding impact of Jamal Khashoggi's murder. I considered him a friend. No one deserves to die as he apparently did. The incident is in every respect repellent.
A couple of days ago, I read an article on economic statecraft in Foreign Affairs. It asserted that sanctions had “helped drive North Korea to the negotiating table.” That’s the accepted narrative. But the north Koreans were never unwilling to negotiate.
We live in turbulent times. In Europe, in America, and in parts of Asia there is an elemental unease about what is to come. The rule-bound order that the Western victors of World War II created is disintegrating. International law no longer protects the weak. Bluster, bullying, and bombing ap
Time was, the countries of the Middle East relied on the United States for patronage, protection, and guidance. Suez taught Israel, Britain, and France that without Washington’s acquiescence, their policies could not succeed. Egypt’s defection showed Russia the limits of its ability to compete
I am honored to stand before you this morning to discuss US-China relations. It’s a challenge to speak on a subject so many here know so much about, and to do so at a moment of such radical inflection in the relationship. But Sino-American relations are a matter of great importance to all in ou