Donald Trump

President Trump must avoid at all costs a direct military confrontation with North Korea, which has a long history of engaging in brinksmanship. The United States has been successful in defusing past crises by working in partnership with U.S. allies in the region. Today, China calls for restraint, and South Korea is urging a diplomatic solution. [...] President Trump could demonstrate his art of deal making by advancing the only solution that’s ever worked: diplomacy and engagement.

Medical diplomacy is the kind of foreign policy tool that the world’s most powerful nation should embrace. [...] Nations such as the United States that have the financial and logistical ability to respond to these epidemics should accept their moral responsibility to do so. In the case of the United States, “America first” does not mean “America only.” Spending a tiny fraction of this country’s wealth to save lives should be done without a second thought.

World AIDS Day Mural

PEPFAR is key to U.S. medical diplomacy and should be protected, writes Philip Seib. 

Could the missile strikes on Syria enhance U.S. soft power? Philip Seib considers the possibility at the CPD Blog.

City diplomacy luminary and Attorney Michael Shuman, a leader of the former Center for Innovative Diplomacy, reminds us that local government participation in foreign affairs is enumerated in and protected by the Constitution. Thus, when American local governments responded to the threat of nuclear annihilation vis-à-vis the U.S. arms race with the Soviet Union, to the federal government’s inadequate response to Apartheid, and to other problems from the federal-level, the resultant municipal activism was not only legal, it was defining of American federalism.

China's President Xi Jinping, on the way to his eagerly awaited first encounter with Donald Trump, met his Finnish counterpart in Helsinki Wednesday, extending Beijing's famed "panda diplomacy" to Finland. The two sides agreed to carry out "cooperative panda research" and "make the pandas messengers of friendship between our two countries," Xi said at a joint press conference in Helsinki.

"The largely untold story of Southern California’s unique place in American diplomatic history is now being told," says Ben Leffel.

Contrary to public perceptions, foreign aid represents a tiny fraction of the $4 trillion federal budget. According to the Congressional Research Service, in the past three decades, foreign aid has never accounted for more than 1.4 cents of every dollar spent by Washington. [...] "When you deploy hard power, you actually need more diplomats," says Charles Ries, a vice president at the RAND Corporation who served in diplomatic posts in Iraq and Greece.

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