We are delighted at the news of the late Bill Powers being unanimously named as President Emeritus. We owe the very establishment of the Clements Center to Powers' support and vision. Will Inboden, Clements executive director and William Powers, Jr. chair, writes, "Bill’s enthusiasm for the Clements Center also came because as a Navy veteran he knew firsthand the importance of a strong national security policy, as a scholar, he appreciated the value of diplomatic and military history, and as a university president he embraced the cultivation in our students the values of citizenship, patriotism, and service to country."
In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Michael Kimmage, professor and department chair at the Department of History at Catholic University in Washington D.C., discusses his book, The Abandonment of the West: The History of an Idea in American Foreign Policy. Kimmage asserts that the idea of the “West” — a set of shared values that he argues revolve around liberty and self-determination — can be traced both to Wilsonian idealism, as well as to profound developments at the end of World War II. He traces the influence that this concept that there is a group of like-minded transatlantic nations had on Cold War foreign policy. Kimmage’s discussion is wide ranging, encompassing issues as diverse as the influence of race and questions about “America first.”
Kimmage was introduced in this episode by Jeremi Suri of the LBJ School and professor at the Department of History at the University of Texas at Austin.
In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, we listen to a talk by David French, author of Divided We Fall: America’s Secession Threat and How we Restore our Nation. French details the way in which the United States has become increasingly polarized politically, geographically, and culturally, and examines what he considers to be the threat of secession. French makes the case that in order to unite the country, Americans need to find causes and ways of interacting that focus on bringing people together and finding common ground. This discussion was part of the University of Texas’ celebration of Free Speech Week.
In the latest episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Clements Center Senior Fellow Jim Golby sits down with National Security Fellow Brandon Archuleta to talk about his new book, Twenty Years of Service: The Politics of Military Pension Policy and the Long Road to Reform. Archuleta’s book unpacks the forces that are behind the long persistence of a retirement system that was, as he puts it, “cliff vested,” where soldiers who remained for less than 20 years would receive nothing and those who remained for over 20 years would receive a generous pension. He also looks at the forces that enabled reform in the pension system in 2018.
Archuleta is an active duty Army officer and the views and opinions he expresses are his own and not those of the U.S. Department of Defense, the Department of the Army, or any other aspect of the military.
Clements Center Predoctoral Fellow Peter Slezkine publishes review of Michael Kimmage’s Abandonment of the West: The History of an Idea in American Foreign Policy combined with a broader reflection on the history of US leadership in "The Case for Questioning U.S. Leadership" in National Interest.
© Clements Center for National Security 2019