National Security Research Division

  • A U.S. flag is seen at a post in Deh Bala district, Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, after U.S. and Afghan forces cleared Islamic State fighters from the area, July 7, 2018

    Likely Effects of a Precipitous U.S. Withdrawal from Afghanistan

    Winning may not be an option in Afghanistan, but an early departure of U.S. forces without a peace settlement will mean choosing to lose. The result will be the weakening of deterrence and the value of American reassurance elsewhere, an increased terrorist threat, and the possibility of having to return there under worse conditions.

Blog Posts and Media Coverage

  • A view of the cargo terminal of the Standard Gauge Railway line constructed by the China Road and Bridge Corporation and financed by the Chinese government, Nairobi, Kenya, May 31, 2017, photo by Thomas Mukoya/Reuters

    The Little-Known Security Gaps in China's Belt and Road Initiative

    Feb 18, 2019

    China's Belt and Road Initiative focuses on developing infrastructure to connect Beijing to key hubs of economic activity throughout the world. But the more interests one has abroad, the more one has to protect.

  • UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir O. Pedersen shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping as King Harald of Norway looks on during a visit to China, October 16, 2018, photo by NTB Scanpix/Heiko Junge via Reuters

    The U.S. Withdrawal from Syria Is an Opportunity for China

    Feb 15, 2019

    The U.S. withdrawal from Syria could allow Beijing to further assert its role as a key international partner in Syria and, by extension, further its interests in the Middle East. The extent of Sino-Syrian cooperation remains ambiguous but it has reportedly deepened, with China supplying intelligence personnel, strategic advisors, and special forces.

  • World map with exclamation points for epicenters for terrorist attack

    A New Framework for Evaluating Counter Violent Extremism Projects

    Feb 15, 2019

    Gathering evidence in the area of counter violent extremism (CVE) is vital, given the increasing role for CVE interventions in the political and security environment. Evaluations of these interventions can play a role in growing this knowledge, by helping the CVE field itself to develop.

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a business forum, Delovaya Rossiya in Moscow, Russia, February 6, 2019

    Russia Chooses Paupers as Partners, with Questionable Benefit

    Feb 14, 2019

    By leveraging the efficiencies of globalization and cultivating ties with prosperous partners, Russia could increase its economic potential and improve living standards for its people. And by engaging more positively with the world, it could gain influence in the forums that matter, such as the G20 and multilateral institutions.

  • Donald Trump holds up a photo of a border wall design in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., January 11, 2019

    Terrorists on the Border and Government Secrecy

    Feb 13, 2019

    Detailed information on how many would-be terrorists may have sought to cross the southern border is being withheld on the grounds that it is sensitive. The refusal of officials to offer a fuller explanation of the numbers illustrates how the continued expansion of secrecy in government is damaging the ability of the public to assess the risk and evaluate the response.

  • Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev addresses the first meeting of the Madrid Peace Conference in Madrid, Spain, October 30, 1991

    The Warsaw Summit Is No Madrid

    Feb 13, 2019

    The peace process begun in Madrid nearly 30 years ago showed promise, but ultimately stalled, and will need rethinking to adapt to today's Middle East. The world could use a worthy successor. The Warsaw summit probably isn't it.

Recent Publications