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Debates

It's Time To Clip America's Global Wings

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Live Transcript
  • Lawrence Korb on America's Global Role

    Clip: Lawrence Korb argues for the motion “It's Time to Clip America's Global Wings.”

  • Peter Galbraith on America's Global Role

    Clip: Peter Galbraith argues for the motion “It's Time to Clip America's Global Wings.”

  • Eliot Cohen on America's Global Role

    Clip: Eliot Cohen argues against the motion “It's Time to Clip America's Global Wings.”

  • Elliott Abrams on America's Global Role

    Clip: Elliott Abrams argues against the motion “It's Time to Clip America's Global Wings.”

Debate Details

Just two decades ago there seemed to be no limits to American power. 9/11, the financial crisis, and the rise of China are all reminders of what a different world we live in today. What should America’s role be in the new world order? Are we guilty of overreach, or have we not been ambitious enough?

The Debaters

For the motion

Peter Galbraith

Senator of Vermont and Senior Diplomatic Fellow at the Center for Arms Control.

Is a newly-elected Vermont state senator and the senior diplomatic fellow at the Center for Arms Control. Prior to joining the Center, he was a professor... Read More

Lawrence Korb

Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress.

Is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. Korb served as assistant secretary of defense (manpower, reserve affairs, installations, and... Read More

Against the motion

Elliott Abrams

Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations

Is senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He was deputy national security advisor in charge of Middle Eastern... Read More

Eliot Cohen

Professor of Strategic Studies at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of Johns Hopkins University

Eliot Cohen is Robert E. Osgood Professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). He directs the strategic... Read More

Where Do You Stand?

For The Motion
  • America will continue to take the lead, but the time for unilateralism is over.
  • Mired in two wars, our armed forces are already stretched dangerously thin.
  • The financial crisis has been a humbling check on the American economic model, and puts us in the position of having to make hard choices and reign in expansive foreign policy.
  • With torture, rendition, two unpopular wars, Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, America has lost the moral high ground.
Against The Motion
  • The effects of America withdrawing would be calamitous as there is no other country willing and able to take on the burdens of leadership.
  • We have not devoted vast energy and treasure to overreaching around the world and, in fact, we need to increase defense spending to support our global responsibilities.
  • We should do more to promote political and economic freedom.

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Pre-Debate
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The Research

The Research

Imperial by Design

John J. Mearsheimer
December 16, 2010

The Unipolar Moment Revisited

Charles Krauthammer
March 1, 2016

Conflict or Cooperation?

Richard K. Betts
December 1, 2016
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