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In This Issue: May 2011

Save Money, Live Better: Doing More With Fewer Nonproliferation Dollars

A recent Gallup poll shows a growing willingness on the part of the American people to make real cuts to military, national defense, and homeland security spending. On Capitol Hill, legislators have proposed significant reductions to programs dedicated to limiting terrorist access to vulnerable nuclear weapons-usable materials around the globe.

With prospects of budget reductions for US programs geared to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction, it has become more critical to use existing funds in innovative ways that would also produce lasting results. In this opinion piece Brian Finlay, senior associate at the Henry L. Stimson Center, suggests three areas where the Obama administration should focus innovation while doing more with less and still improve and advance nonproliferation.

Finding a Path to Greater Impact for the G-20

The elevation of the G-20 in 2009 to an ongoing summit-level forum was emblematic of the power shifts that have placed the old post-WWII order under strain. No other recent multilateral innovation is so clearly premised on bringing together the established and emerging powers as peers. At the same time, the limitations of recent G-summitry show that the project of emerging-established power cooperation is far from complete. Assuming that this forum has not exhausted its potential in two short years, what path can G-20 leaders take to have a greater impact?

The evolution of the G-20 should be judged against the wider challenges for multilateral cooperation, argues Stanley Foundation program officer David Shorr. It thus should be viewed as a test of how much statesmanship today's international leaders can summon. In this article he offers several points to be monitored as the G-20 progresses to see if they’re making the grade.

Beyond The Headlines

A New Story for America’s New Century

“Where is the United States going in the world? How can we get there? What are the guiding stars that will illuminate the path along the way? We need a story with a beginning, middle, and projected happy ending that will transcend our political divisions, orient us as a nation, and give us both a common direction and the confidence and commitment to get to our destination.” Thus is the beginning of the ambitious Wilson Center report, “A National Security Narrative,” coauthored by US Navy Captain Wayne Porter and US Marine Corps Colonel Mark “Puck” Mykleby, both active-duty defense analysts. They wrote the report under the collective pseudonym “Mr. Y,” a reference to former diplomat George Kennan who in 1947 authored an anonymous narrative under the pseudonym Mr. X that outlined a policy of containment of the Soviet Union that eventually led to its collapse. This new narrative about America in the 21st century expresses a hopeful vision of an America that thrives by leveraging the opportunities that exist in the world, not building up defenses against perceived threats. Despite little press attention, many say the piece puts sustainability, and even the death of Osama bin Laden, in an important context. John Norris of Foreign Policy magazine says, “Its findings are revelatory, and they deserve to be read and appreciated not only by every lawmaker in Congress, but by every American citizen.”

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About The Stanley Foundation
The Stanley Foundation seeks a secure peace with freedom and justice, built on world citizenship and effective global governance. It brings fresh voices, original ideas, and lasting solutions to debates on global and regional problems. The foundation is a nonpartisan, private operating foundation, located in Muscatine, Iowa, that focuses on peace and security issues and advocates principled multilateralism. The foundation frequently collaborates with other organizations. It does not make grants. Online at

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Foreign Policy in Action: Measuring Global Progress on Nuclear Security

To mark the one-year anniversary of the Washington Nuclear Security Summit, the Fissile Materials Working Group gathered nearly 100 participants in Vienna to discuss progress on meeting the commitments made at the summit, Eurasian regional nuclear security efforts, education and training in nuclear security, and the role of the International Atomic Energy Agency in advancing nuclear security. A written summary, video, and panelist presentations from “Next Generation Nuclear Security: Measuring Progress & Charting the Way Forward” are now available.

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TSF Library

Making the G-20 a Reservoir of Global Leadership

Policy Analysis Brief
April 2011

In this new policy analysis brief from the Stanley Foundation, program officer David Shorr takes a consciously maximalist approach in arguing that the G-20 can become a vital multilateral hub where political leaders overcome policy differences and combine their leverage to tackle the major challenges of the era. Read the brief.

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