United States

My Expanded Lowy Post on Moral Hazard in US Alliances: Explaining Japan-Korea (and Greece-Turkey?)

domhSo this post is a bleg to those of you who know more about alliances than me. I am considering writing up this for an article, so I thought I would ‘crowd-source’ early comments on this. I also wonder if someone elsewhere has already suggested this idea in the vast alliance literature, so please let me know.

My December Newsweek Japan Essay: Japan as a Unique Bulwark to Chinese Hegemony in Asia


I recently joined Newsweek Japan in a more official capacity as a regular contributor. I am pleased to do so, as I increasingly think that Japan is the primary bulwark to Chinese hegemony in Asia. So more and more, my research interest is drifting toward the Sino-Japanese competition as weightier than the inter-Korean competition.

My December Diplomat Essay: US Alliance with Japan Sparks a Korean Grand Strategy Debate

ISC Research Paper: U.S. Government Shutdown

Recently, the US federal government shutdown has made a great splash in international news. And while the shutdown was ended by a last minute deal between the Republicans and Democrats on October 16th, this issue is not resolved and hasn’t just been postponed to January 15th 2014. At that time, the same issues are likely to arise again as the Republicans attempt to re-open debate on Obama’s Affordable Care Act and larger fiscal issues.

This research paper explains the background of the shutdown, its domestic and international impacts and what’s next for the U.S. government.

Download the PDF here.


My November Diplomat Essay: China & Russia are Not Displacing the US bc of the Syria Deal


This is a re-up of my monthly column for The Diplomat for November. Here is the original. I must say I don’t find the comments to be particularly helpful over there, so please give me your thoughts.

No More Neocon Faux-Cassandra Posturing: American Defense is not in “Decline”

Two pieces got emailed to me in the last few days that nicely illustrate just how entrenched semi-imperial thinking has become in Washington, how wildly disconnected from the reality of US security our foreign policy community’s threat assessments have become, and the hysteria that greets serious debate on DoD’s size in this post-Great Recession era of high unemployment and large deficits.

Current Korean Strategy Debate in the Media: K Caught b/t the US and China

cover_28151813This is a lengthy piece I just wrote for this week’s edition of Newsweek Korea. Here is the link for the Korean version; below is the English translation. That is the edition’s cover to the left. Needless to say, the guys who came up with that cover haven’t been to Amsterdam. Moving on… Here is that essay.

“Since the recent visit of US Secretary of Defense Charles Hagel to Japan, a rising discussion in South Korea (SK) turns on the country’s tight position between China and Japan.

Robert Kelly's Diplomat Interview on North Korea, Syria, and China’s Rise


Frequent readers know that I am regular contributor to the Diplomat web-magazine. On October 10, Editor James Pach interviewed me, mostly about Northeast Asia. Jim is a great guy, and I think these questions helpfully expand on some ideas I have put on the blog recently, especially my recent piece on reining in US presidential wars powers.

My October Diplomat Essay: Was Syria a Bridge-Too-Far for Untrammeled Executive War-Powers? (yes)

Jump to 1:13: That’s best question asked during the GOP debates last year

This is my monthly essay for the Diplomat web-magazine. The original can be found here.

My September Diplomat Essay: Relax – Chinese Hegemony in Asia is Unlikely

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