The Lawfare Podcast

Lawfare Podcast, Episode #77: The Allure of Normalcy---Robert Kagan, Leon Wieseltier, and Fred Hiatt on America’s Leadership in the World

By Benjamin Wittes
Saturday, May 31, 2014, 1:55 PM

Brookings held a great event this week, entitled: "The Allure of Normalcy: America’s Leadership in the World and President Obama’s Foreign Policy." It featured Robert Kagan on his impressive new essay in the New Republic, "Superpowers Don't Get to Retire: What Our Tired Country Still Owes the World." Here's how Brookings described the event:

Many within the United States and others abroad continue to question the United States’ role in the world. Understandably, Americans have grown wary of the country’s role in the world, some asking whether the U.S. still has the power and influence to lead the international community, while others question why the United States must still take on this seemingly singular responsibility. On the eve of a major speech by President Obama addressing these questions, Senior Fellow Robert Kagan released a new essay entitled, "Superpowers Don't Get to Retire: What Our Tired Country Still Owes the World," which was published in the latest edition of The New Republic. Kagan argued that the United States has no choice but to be “exceptional.”

On May 27, the Foreign Policy program at Brookings and The New Republic hosted an event to mark the release of the Kagan essay and in advance of President Obama’s address to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Kagan, a senior fellow in the Project on International Order and Strategy at Brookings, was joined by The New Republic's Leon Wieseltier and The Washington Post's Fred Hiatt.

After the program, the panelists took audience questions.