Although domestic issues took precedence over foreign policy during the 2012 US presidential election, on Wednesday, AEI and Center for American Progress national security experts emphasized the significance of national security in President Obama's second term.
AEI's own Danielle Pletka kicked off the discussion by asking the panelists whether the US has a credibility problem with respect to Obama's foreign policy. Brian Katulis of the Center for American Progress claimed the US must learn to use threat judiciously in the Middle East, making sure it is part of an overarching strategy.
Paul Wolfowitz of AEI countered that the administration has used mistakes from the past 10 years as an excuse for excessive caution. Wolfowitz said that when Obama was elected, many were hopeful that the president could change the world's view of America; however, the US is still losing the battle of ideas.
Finally, Rudy deLeon, also of the Center for American Progress, concluded that the US must get its financial house in order and be honest about its budget. Thus, in order to tackle foreign policy concerns, the US government must first address its domestic issues.
-- Alex Della Rocchetta
Americans voted to keep their commander in chief, but the country is still in for real national security change in the coming months. There will be a new secretary of state, potential new secretary of defense, more transitions in Washington, and continued challenges abroad. Iran’s nuclear program, Syria’s civil war, and the Afghanistan war are just a few of the issues that will be high on the agenda. And then there is the issue of the fiscal cliff and the possible sequestration of $500 billion in defense funds if Congress does not act to stop it. What will change and what will remain the same between now and January 21, 2013?
Join AEI and the Center for American Progress for the first in a series of joint conversations examining major national security challenges in the months and years ahead.
If you are unable to attend, we welcome you to watch the event live on this page. Full video will be posted within 24 hours.