Unfulfilled Expectations

As we all know there are lies, damn lies and statistics.  Nevertheless, for historians interested in public opinion, this week’s Pew Global Attitudes Survey on international views of the United States makes for interesting – if not necessarily surprising – reading. [1] On the positive side, in twelve of the twenty countries polled, a plurality […]

A Center-Left Leader, Missed Opportunities, and Anti-Americanism: A Possible new Direction in U.S. Policy Towards the Western Hemisphere?

I received an email from a former colleague and friend of mine recently who concluded that Lula’s (Luiz Inácio Lula de Silva) two terms in office as President of Brazil (2003-2010) represented a missed opportunity for the United States–and United States-Latin American relations in general. Here was a center-left leader, in one of the world’s […]

What Obama Might Learn from the Past: Bending History in the Direction of Justice

It is the nature of the political process that presidents campaign outside history and must then live within it. For Barack Obama, this meant promising a speedy withdrawal from Iraq, a stronger focus on defeating Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, firm but respectful relations with Russia and China, engagement with opponents like Iran, and progress with our […]