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The ASG Weekly Leaf: 9/11/20

In the news this week, tensions between India and China escalated again following shots fired on the border, the last Australian journalists in China fled the country, the German government confirmed that Alexei Navalny was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok, and there was an attempt to forcibly deport an opposition leader in Belarus. Read more below.

Today, we also remember the lives lost 19 years ago during the September 11th attacks and honor the memory of our fallen heroes.

This Week's Content Highlights

Features from Aspen Strategy Group Members


Madeleine Albright interviewed by Nicole Carroll for USA Today: “Madeleine Albright Talks About How She Became Secretary of State, Speaking Up as a Woman and the Importance of Calling Out Wrongs”

Jane Harman in The Hill: “Fixing Our Broken Foreign Policy is Critical Issue of the Next President”

Nick Kristof in The New York Times: “‘Remote Learning’ Is Often an Oxymoron”

Anne-Marie Slaughter and Sharon Burke in Project Syndicate: “The Solidarity America Needs”

Philip Zelikow, Robert Zoellick and William Inboden on War on the Rocks podcast: “A History of U.S. Foreign Policy from Z to Shining Z”

Robert Zoellick in Foreign Affairs: “Biden’s Domestic Priorities Should Guide His Foreign Policy”

Things to Know

Stay Informed with Important Analysis Relevant to Aspen Security Forum Discussions


Hannah Beech, Saw Nang, and Marlise Simons in The New York Times: “’Kill All You See’: In a First, Myanmar Soldiers Tell of Rohingya Slaughter”


Melinda Gates in Foreign Affairs: “The Pandemic’s Toll on Women: COVID-19 is Gender-Blind, But Not Gender-Neutral”

  • See our ASF 2020 discussion on the pandemic with WHO representatives Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Maria Van Kerkhove, and Mike Ryan here.

Caitlin Hu and Sebastian Shukla on CNN: “Belarus Activists Describe Dramatic Alleged Abduction and Last Sighting of Maria Kolesnikova”


Niha Masih, Gerry Shih, and Joanna Slater in The Washington Post: “Shots Fired on the India-China Border for the First Time in Decades as Tensions Flare”

  • See our ASF 2020 discussion on India’s foreign affairs strategy with Shivshankar Menon, Tanvi Madan, and Anja Manuel here.

James Mayger and Jason Scott on Bloomberg:Australian Media’s Last Reporters in China Flee Amid Tensions”

  • See our ASF 2020 discussion with Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison here.

Asfandyar Mir and Colin P. Clarke in Foreign Affairs: “Al Qaeda’s Franchise Reboot: An Aging Jihadi Brand Still Inspires the Next Generation”

  • See the Aspen Security Forum’s discussion on protecting American allies and interests in the Middle East with Commander Kenneth McKenzie here.

DW News: “Germany: Alexei Navalny Poisoned with Nerve Agent”

  • See our ASF 2020 discussion on foreign policy recommendations from past National Security Advisors Tom Donilon and Stephen Hadley here.

Book of the Week


Our Founders’ Warning: The Age of Reason Meets the Age of Trump

By Strobe Talbott

The Founders counted on their successors to protect and perfect their prodigy with its fundamental ideals, laws, and procedures. They also aspired to a code of personal morals and character. Paramount were honesty, rationality, empathy, and responsibility to the citizenry. These liberal, revolutionary criteria for public service and leadership derived from the European Enlightenment. Strobe Talbott tells that story from the vantage of the Age of Trump, bringing out the stark contrast between the 45th president and the first six—Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, John Quincy Adams, who were children of the Age of Reason. Amid myriad books on the Trump phenomenon in these dark days, Talbott shines a light on our history in hope that the Founders’ legacy, now in peril, will be vindicated.


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