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Thinking about Ukraine: Four Options

Thu, Jan 19, 2023, 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Featuring: Dr. Henry Nau
Location: The Institute of World Politics - 1521 16th St NW, Washington, DC 20036, United States

You are cordially invited to attend a lecture on the topic of

Thinking about Ukraine: Four Options


Dr. Henry Nau
Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University


Thursday, January 19, 2023
5:00-6:00 PM EST


The Institute of World Politics
1521 16th St. NW
Washington D.C. 20036
Marlatt Mansion, Commodore Barry Room
Getting to campus

***This lecture is part of the Intermarium Lecture Series***



About the Lecture

America can escape “forever” wars, but it cannot escape “forever” debates about American foreign policy. The debate today about Ukraine reflects four time-tested ways of thinking about America’s role in the world. Nationalists urge America to stay out of Ukraine and conflicts in general outside the western hemisphere. Realists, now called Restrainers, envision a “frozen conflict” or status quo outcome that splits the difference between western and Russian/ Chinese interests in Ukraine and Taiwan. Liberal internationalists appeal to diplomacy and the Minsk process to reach a cease fire, demilitarization and gradual settlement of disputes through peaceful processes and institutions. Finally, conservative internationalists address the conflict in ideological terms, authoritarian versus democratic governments, and insist that freedom “wins” in Ukraine and Taiwan through a Cold War process of balancing power and eventual negotiations that tilt toward freedom.

About the Speaker

Henry R. Nau is an Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University. He holds a B.S. degree in Economics, Politics and Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). He taught at Williams College (1971-73) and George Washington University (1973-2019) and as visiting professor at Columbia University, Stanford University and Johns Hopkins SAIS.

His books include Conservative Internationalism: Armed Diplomacy Under Jefferson, Polk, Truman, and Reagan (Princeton 2013, paperback with new preface 2015); The Myth of America’s Decline (Oxford 1990, paperback with new preface 1991); At Home Abroad (Cornell 2002); and Perspectives on International Relations (Sage 2021, 7th edition 2021). His latest articles include “Why Reagan Matters,” The National Review, July 10, 2022; “Why Nation-Building is Inevitable,” Providence, August 31, 2021; and “What Trump Gets Right about U.S. Foreign Policy,” The National Interest, April 30, 2020.

From January 1981 to July 1983, he served on President Reagan’s National Security Council as senior staff member and White House sherpa for the Annual G-7 Economic Summits at Ottawa (1981), Versailles (1982), Williamsburg (1983) and a special summit with developing countries at Cancun, Mexico (1982). Dr. Nau also served, in 1975-1977, as Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Economic Affairs in the Department of State and, from 1963-65, as Lieutenant in the 82nd Airborne Division, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.

From 1989-2016 he directed the U.S.-Japan-South Korea Legislative Exchange Program bringing together semiannually legislators from the U.S. Congress, Japanese Diet and South Korean National Assembly, the only forum for regular off the record political discussions among these three major Asia allies. In recognition of this Program, the Japanese Government awarded Professor Nau The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon, presented by the Japanese Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the United States, Kenichiro Sasae, at the Japanese Embassy, September 29, 2016.

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