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inFOCUS Quarterly

Spring 2014

Borders, Nations and Conflict

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Articles by the JPC

How the US Went Wrong and Why

by Shoshana Bryen
April 14, 2014 | American Thinker

It is tempting to simply list all the ways the Obama administration -- particularly Secretaries Kerry and Hagel -- has been wrong on foreign and defense policy. After all, Russia/Ukraine, Syria, Iran, China, and Israel/Palestinians are nothing to sneeze at. But finding a common thread among the mistakes might be the beginning of a corrective policy -- if not by this administration, then perhaps by Congress or the next administration.

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Book Review: War Front to Store Front

by Shoshana Bryen
April 10, 2014 | inFocus Quarterly: Spring 2014

Americans, by a fairly wide margin, tell pollsters that the Iraq war "wasn't worth it." This reflects, perhaps, an isolationist sentiment and desire to ignore a divisive and painful episode—a public more interested in "cocooning" than in foreign policy. The public can turn away and does. Policymakers and analysts, however, should require of themselves an understanding of the military, diplomatic, economic and social slices of the war, some of which were more successful than others.

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Where Did the Peace Process Go?

by Shoshana Bryen
March 30, 2014 | American Thinker

Check your newspaper, Twitter feed, or CNN.  You will find the Malaysian airplane, Ukraine, the mudslide in Washington State, and in Washington, D.C. the terrible story of a missing 8-year-old girl.  There is the occasional story about the Syrian civil war, the Central African Republic, or the declining U.S. defense budget.  You are unlikely to learn much about the meeting between Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and President Obama, or about the current state of Secretary of State Kerry's "American Framework" for Israel-Palestinian peace.

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America's 'Provocative Weakness'

by J. Michael Waller
March 27, 2014 | inFocus Quarterly: Winter 2014

As it continues its spiraling, across-the-board decline, the Russian Federation is becoming more relevant as a world power.

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What's Happening to the Internet?

by Shoshana Bryen
March 20, 2014 | American Thinker

It sounds like something you don't want to know too much about. When you type an address into your computer's browser, you go to that address. How your computer knows where to find the Google image of kittens and puppies isn't your problem, is it? Well, it might be. Not kittens, perhaps, but what if you want to find the Israeli Ministry of Tourism or the American Constitution?

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EU Report, EU Money Threaten Israel

by Shoshana Bryen
March 14, 2014 | PJMedia

As Israelis in the southern part of the country have taken to shelters and safe rooms under a barrage of more than 60 (and counting) rockets from the Gaza Strip, and as the Israeli General Staff considers a response, it is worth a look at the just-released EU Heads of Mission report on Gaza. It got a few things right, including:

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An "Unfriendly Gesture"

by Shoshana Bryen
March 12, 2014 | American Thinker

In response to mounting unhappiness in the West with Russia's acquisition of Crimea and plans to split Ukraine, Vladimir Putin has struck again. The Russian Defense Ministry released a statement over the weekend saying, "The unfounded threats... are seen by us as an unfriendly gesture," raising the possibility of "new circumstances, giving Russia the right to pull out of the inspections" required under the START treaty with the U.S.

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The Permanent Crisis of the Russian State

by Stephen Blank
March 10, 2014 | inFocus Quarterly Winter 2014

"Today's Russian state fundamentally remains the patrimonial Muscovite state originating in the medieval formation of the Tsar surrounded by his Boyars, an aristocratic tier of society that formed the early supreme council, the Duma. This system characterized both Tsardom and Soviet power." - Stephen Blank, PhD.

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Money, Politics and Israel's Defense

by Shoshana Bryen
March 7, 2014 | Gatestone Institute

Missile defense buys time and the Administration should appreciate -- and fund -- that. So when the President is leaning hard on Israel to be forthcoming and flexible on issues of its own short and long-term security, the signal that missile defenses are expendable sends the wrong signal to both friends and adversaries.

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Putin's Russia or Russia's Putin

by Ilya Levkov
March 4, 2014 | inFocus WINTER 2014

Editor's Note: The crisis in Ukraine requires an understanding of the Russian State and its political, historic and military drivers. Ilya Levkov, President of Liberty Publishing, wrote in the JPC's inFOCUS Quarterly (Winter 2014):

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America Speaks: Who Cares?

by Shoshana Bryen
March 3, 2014 | American Thinker

President Obama has long made clear his distaste for fighting wars -- his or anyone else's. He has followed through on his belief in diplomacy not necessarily moored to military power, and on his priority issues within the military related to social and group identity issues. Now in his sixth year, the president has almost fully implemented his assumptions through budget cuts. Objective geopolitical circumstances aside, he is spending the "peace dividend" he claims.

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Waking up to Defense Cuts

by Shoshana Bryen
February 27, 2014 | American Thinker

If you are surprised by this week's announcement of major manpower cuts to the U.S. Army, you haven't been paying attention. For a long time.

There are two components to understanding America's defense spending choices -- the political and the budgetary; they are not the same. The Administration has made the political case clear.

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Why Jordanians Worry about the Two-State Solution

by Shoshana Bryen
February 7, 2014 | Forbes

It has been said that Jordan is the only Arab country in which Palestinians have "full citizenship." That is less than a complete truth. As Secretary of State John Kerry pursues his plan for a "two state solution," the insecurity of Palestinian legal status in Jordan is emerging.

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