Commentary Series

The Commentary Series is intended to promote better policy by fostering constructive debate among leading policymakers, academics, and observers.  Designed to be timely and relevant, these commentaries seek to illuminate the issues of the day by raising important questions and challenging underpinning assumptions.  Opinions expressed in Commentaries are those of the author(s) alone. Comments should be directed to

Disaster Diplomacy (PDF)

February 26, 2010

Like the 2004 tsunami in Indonesia or the 2003 earthquake in Iran, there are times when the scale of devastation wrought by Mother Nature is simply so great as to dwarf whatever traditional interstate rivalries, animosities, or mistrust that may exist. While these times may be few and far between, they are arguably proof positive that nations and people can, and will, rise to the occasion when urgency demands, and reflect their better angels.

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