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Is Donald Trump right to call NAFTA a “disaster”?

TCF fellow Mark Thoma explains the history of NAFTA and points out the specific effects that it has and has not had on the US economy. He says that historically, it has not had a very deep impact on either the US or Mexican economy, largely because of the rise of China as an economic power.

The biggest factor was the unforeseen rise of China. Much of the production and jobs that would have ended up in Mexico as a result of NAFTA went to China instead. If those jobs had gone to Mexicans, much of their new income would have been used to purchase goods produced in the U.S. thereby nullifying NAFTA's negative effects for U.S. workers.

Read Thoma's full article on the realities of NAFTA via CBS Moneywatch .

Tags: trade agreements, nafta, job growth

India’s New Green Revolution

Just in time for the day of the United Nations deadline, India has released its formal greenhouse gas emissions plan for the COP 21 conference. In a new article, TCF policy associate Neil Bhatiya discusses the promising aspects of India's proposal.

The renewable energy ambitions outlined are extremely significant and should be encouraged. Mobilization of the Green Climate Fund, the U.N.-backed mechanism for channeling financing from developed nations to developing ones to fight climate change, can assist with this. While the plan didn’t include a peak emissions year or national carbon pricing policy, as China’s announced plans do, that is not a reason to feel disappointed that something more ambitious wasn’t put forward. India has stated it has a desire to be a constructive player in Paris.

Read Bhatiya's full analysis of India's emissions plan in FP.

Don’t Ask the UN Climate Change Conference to Do Everything

September 29, 2015 COMMENTARY BY: Neil Bhatiya TOPICS: Foreign Policy, Climate Change, Additional Focus, Climate Change

In the lead-up to the Paris climate talks in December, many are placing too many expectations on the UNFCCC in terms of what it can—and will—accomplish.

Tags: united nations, unfccc, refugees, climate policy, climate change

Confronting the “Moscow Track” for Syria

​When it comes to Russian involvement in Syria, the United States will ultimately have to choose between two different courses.

Tags: syrian war, syrian refugees, syrian crisis, syrian civil war

Pentagon Hypes Russia Threat in Effort to Boost Defense Spending

Russia's recent behavior has left the Pentagon calling for increased military spending, says TCF fellow Michael Cohen in the latest installment of his foreign policy column for World Politics Review.

Russia is not about to begin a conventional war with a NATO country. If it did, it would lose, and the consequences to Russia—not just militarily, but also economically and diplomatically—would be catastrophic. The Pentagon’s no-holds-barred effort to turn Russia into America’s next bogeyman is, in reality, a rather transparent attempt by the military, and particularly the Army, to make the case for its continued budgetary relevance in a post-Iraq, post-Afghanistan world.

Read more from Cohen at World Politics Review.

Tags: russia, pentagon, military spending, military

2 Al-Jazeera Journalists Pardoned, Released in Egypt

On Wednesday, President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi pardoned and released two Al-Jazeera Western journalists. TCF senior fellow Michael Wahid Hanna spoke with the Associated Press on the development:

Michael W. Hanna, senior fellow at the New York-based Century Foundation, said the presidential pardon "reflects greater comfort in his position internally."

"Now, he also has a better story to tell when he goes to New York; that he is addressing questions of international concern," Hanna said.

Read more on the journalists' release at the New York Times.

Tags: el-sisi, egyptian politics, al jazeera journalists, al jazeera, abdel fattah al-sisi


Foreign Policy

Foreign Policy

In the first years of the new century, an assertive foreign policy took a toll on the cultivated role of the U.S. as a responsible global leader. The Century Foundation's work in this area provides perspective on the international difficulties the U.S. is facing today, while providing policy recommendations to promote the nation's security interests. Our research and analysis focuses on effectively responding to challenges in the Middle East and Pakistan, as well as responding to international crime.

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