Let’s start this post off with a pop culture confession: I didn’t like The Hangover. I realize that this probably puts me in the minority of the American movie-going public (the film earned nearly a half-billion dollars at the box office, making it the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all-time), but I found it to be a bit too crass and a bit too formulaic for my taste.
A recent New York Times article revealed that the Obama administration is considering withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan ahead of the planned 2014 withdrawal date, raising questions about what the country might look like after foreign forces exit – whenever that may be. The answer is critical, as the future of post-withdrawal Afghanistan has implications for the entire Asian continent.
On Tuesday, February 12 (the night of Monday, February 11 in the U.S.), North Korea conducted its third nuclear test. While the test might seem like more of the same intermittent provocation from the “hermit kingdom,” there’s reason to believe that Nor…
President Barack Obama’s first-ever trip to Myanmar (Burma) shows he is still taking a two pronged approach on North Korea by sending two explicit messages: 1. the door is still open for cooperation if North Korea is serious about surrendering its nuclear ambitions, and 2. sanctions against the North will continue in the meantime to cut off the cash flow to its military.
Many of you know there is a slew of bilateral civil nuclear cooperation agreements (“123”) that need to be renewed, and among them is one with South Korea. I recently wrote an op-ed in The Hill arguing that the North Korean nuclear issue is irrelevant to 123 discussions and point out the real dilemmas US policymakers are faced with when negotiating all civil nuclear cooperation agreements hereafter.