Accessibility links

Breaking News

Smart Power Under Obama - A Briefing with Joseph Nye

How will President Obama conduct U.S. foreign policy?
(note: audio clips are available on the right).

Harvard Professor and former U.S. Government official Joseph Nye, Jr. gave an exclusive briefing to RFE/RL via videolink from Washington, D.C. titled, “Smart Power Under Obama – What Can We Expect?”

The session included an extensive question and answer session focusing on soft power, democracy promotion, and how the Obama Administration will conduct its still-evolving foreign policy in realtion to specific issues icluding Iran, Russia, and Afghanistan, among many others

Professor Nye described democracy promotion as being an inevitable part of U.S. foreign policy because of democracy’s place in the American psyche. “America has to do democracy promotion because that’s who we are, it’s in our ‘civil genes,’” he said. Nye went on to stress the importance of method over rhetoric, explaining, “Successful democracy promotion can’t be coercive, it has to be attractive.” He added, “We’ve got to talk about democracy as something which is in the interests of others.”