Thursday News and Notes

Trade Pact With Europe Should Anchor New US-European Relations Clemens Yergin advocates for a US pivot to Europe using the pending Trans Atlantic Trade Agreement as an anchor for renewed relations.

Yergin says what began as an economic matter has taken on a new form in the wake of Russian aggression in Eastern Europe making the trade agreement “the partnership is the most ambitious project to date to bind both sides of the Atlantic into a more perfect Western union, and to add an economic pillar to the longstanding military one represented by NATO.”

“We are the global rule makers, and that is at the heart of T.T.I.P.,” economist André Sapir, a senior fellow at the German think tank Bruegel, tells The New York Times.

Small-Footprint Interventions Have Poor Success Record
Rand analyst Stephen Watts contends that historically, small-footprint interventions are good at preventing allies from losing wars but they are not for winning wars.

“Proponents of such interventions—which include a large number of thinkers in the U.S. defense community—typically point to recent U.S. successes in the Philippines and Colombia, where small contingents of U.S. forces have helped partner governments turn the tide of their counterinsurgency campaigns. Unfortunately, these proponents seldom ask whether these successes are replicable elsewhere,” he writes.

Quick Hits

Syrian refugees in Lebanon surpass the one million mark.

Christian Science Monitor’s Dan Murphy looks ahead at Afghanistan’s path in a post-Karzai world.

Robert M. Damin of the Council on Foreign Relations offers his thoughts on whether the Middle East peace process has reached a critical juncture.

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