Debate "Housekeeping" (07:31)
John Donvan frames the debate on national security and introduces panel members: Executive Vice President of the German Marshall Fund of the United States and former Assistant Secretary of Defense Derek Chollet, Professor of Russian Studies and Politics Emeritus at New York University and Princeton University Stephen F. Cohen, Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and former CIA Case Officer Reuel Marc Gerecht, American Political Scientist and Professor at the University of Chicago, John Mearsheimer, and Deputy Director-General at the Institute for Strategic Studies Kori Schake.
Resolution: NATO Is No Longer Fit for Purpose (09:18)
Schake explains that NATO was formed by individuals who fought World War II. Mearsheimer feels that there is no meaningful threat in Europe and the United States needs to pivot towards Asia. Panelists explain why they agree or disagree with the resolution.
Spreading Influence (12:32)
Schake describes how the United States dragged its NATO allies into places like Afghanistan and Kosovo. Mearsheimer explains that European allies helped the U.S. stabilize Libya. The growing militarization of Chinese politics is a big issue.
Resolution: The Russia Threat Is Overblown (09:30)
Cohen explains that Putin is a reactive, not aggressive leader; Russia should be a U.S. partner, but Washington DC squandered the opportunity by provoking threats that do not exist. The Ukraine crisis is a result of NATO expansion. Chollet describes how Putin's agenda undermines the foundations of democracy.
Dallying with China (12:14)
Donvan summarizes the panelists' opinions on whether the threat is exaggerated. Mearsheimer explains that the United States pushed the Russians to the Chinese. Cohen describes how Putin was pushed into action in Crimea.
Resolution: It's Time to Take a Hard Line on Iran (09:13)
Chollet describes how Iran supports terrorists who want to destabilize the Middle East. Cohen does not see how increased volatility in Syria and Iraq could help. Mearsheimer explains Trump's withdrawal from the nuclear agreement was a fundamental mistake; nuclear weapons are the ultimate deterrent.
Risk of War (08:01)
Schake explains that there are dangerous unintended consequences of not confronting Iran's actions. Mearsheimer describes how the United States has destabilized more regimes than any other country in the world and how America played a role in the war in Syria. Cohen explains how regimes are good or bad depending on an individual's perspective.
Moderate Element in Iran (07:09)
Schake does not believe that there are moderate Iranians in the government. Mearsheimer explains that the foolishness of the United States allowed Iran to become a stabilizing force in the Middle East. Gerecht suggests economic sanctions.
Time to Vote (08:03)
Donvan compliments panelists on their conduct and instructs the audience to vote. Debaters discuss what citizens should consider when voting in the mid-term elections.
Audience Vote Results (01:49)
Pre-Debate: NATO Is No Longer Fit for Purpose - Yes: 20% No: 80%
Pre-Debate: The Russia Threat Is Overblown - Yes: 31% No: 69%
Pre-Debate: It's Time to Take a Hard Line on Iran - Yes: 38% No: 62%
Post-Debate: NATO Is No Longer Fit for Purpose - Yes: 25% No: 75%
Post-Debate: The Russia Threat Is Overblown - Yes: 44% No: 56%
Post-Debate: It's Time to Take a Hard Line on Iran - Yes: 48% No: 52%
Credits: Unresolved: U.S. National Security: A Debate (00:09)
Credits: Unresolved: U.S. National Security: A Debate
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