Frederick Kempe

  • Here’s Why US Commitment to the Western Balkans Matters

    The United States and the European Union (EU) must deepen their engagement with the Western Balkans, a region where Russia, Turkey, and wealthy Arab Gulf states have extended their influence and that is considered integral to realizing the idea of a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace, speakers and panelists said at the Atlantic Council on November 29.

    One European official described the United States as an invaluable partner in realizing the vision of a whole and free Europe, while a US official affirmed the commitment of US President Donald J. Trump’s administration to the Western Balkans.

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  • Along for the Ride?

    Beyond power machinations and political maneuvering, events in Saudi Arabia signal a more important, historic shift is underway

    Riyadh – King Salman’s unprecedented purge of the Saudi royal family this week was an earthquake whose ongoing aftershocks will go far beyond the country’s borders—rippling out across the Islamic world from the custodian of Mecca.

    The purge’s possible architect and certain benefactor was the king’s son, the 32-year-old Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is engaged in one of the most audacious political and economic gambles of our times. Yet perhaps even more far-reaching have been his moves toward social liberalization and his public appeals for “moderate Islam.”

    Talk to royal family members over the age of 50 and you’ll hear whispered trepidation over what they consider the reckless actions of a headstrong prince. By contrast, among Saudis under 30, who make up more than half the population, and women, who account for the majority of the country’s graduate students, one hears a new sense of optimism and opportunity.

    The facts by now are well known, but their importance remains underestimated. 

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  • Germany’s ‘Lame Duck’ Chancellor

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was re-elected on September 24, will be a “lame duck” in her fourth, and likely final, term in office, according to Wolfgang Ischinger, chairman of the Munich Security Conference and Atlantic Council board director.

    “There are those in her party and sister party that will want to start having a discussion about ‘after Merkel,’ and that number will go [up] as of today,” Ischinger said in an Atlantic Council press and members phone briefing on September 25. However, he added, “she shouldn’t be counted out. She’s been very good.”

    Ischinger joined Annette Heuser, chief executive officer of the Professor Otto Beisheim Foundation and Atlantic Council board director, and Stefan Kornelius, foreign policy editor at Süddeutsche Zeitung, to discuss the implications of Merkel’s re-election, not only for Germany, but also for its relationships with international partners such as the United States. Atlantic Council President and Chief Executive Officer Frederick Kempe moderated the conversation.

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  • Kempe Joins CNBC to Discuss Trump's Threat to North Korea


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  • Atlantic Council Honors Champions of Freedom

    The political, security, and humanitarian challenges facing the world today cannot be overcome without international cooperation and a concerted effort to strengthen the “solidarity of values” of the transatlantic community, Daniel Fried, a recipient of the Atlantic Council’s 2017 Freedom Award, said at the awards ceremony in Warsaw, Poland, on July 7.

    The post-World War II international order created by the collaborative efforts of the United States and Europe “is at risk and under assault from without—from Russia—and from within—from those who doubt the value of what the free world achieved and what the free world stands for,” said Fried, a former assistant secretary of state for Europe who is currently a distinguished fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center and Future Europe Initiative.  

    In an ardent call for transatlantic cooperation, Fried said: “We must equally recommit to the free world and the common values which have propelled us this far.”

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  • Former Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James Joins Atlantic Council as Board Director and Distinguished Fellow

    WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council announced today that Deborah Lee James, former secretary of the air force, has joined the Atlantic Council as a board director and its Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security as a distinguished fellow. Secretary James has thirty years of senior national security experience in the federal government and the private sector.

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  • Kempe Joins CNBC to Discuss the Potential Impact of the UK Election on Financial Markets


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  • Ford ‘Disappointed’ by Trump’s Decision to Quit Paris Climate Deal

    While Ford Motor Company is “disappointed” by US President Donald J. Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, it will not impact the company’s strategy to continue working toward technological advances designed to improve customers’ quality of life, William C. Ford, Jr., executive chairman of Ford Motor Company, said at the Atlantic Council on June 5.

    It “would be nice” to see the United States abide by the Paris deal, an international agreement with more than 190 countries committed to reducing their greenhouse-gas emissions, however, the US withdrawal from the accord “doesn’t change anything for us,” said Ford. He insisted his company, which has already made great progress toward clean energy improvements, will continue with business as usual.

    “We are already ahead of where the Paris accords would like us to go,” in terms of environmental regulations, he said.

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  • Statement from Atlantic Council President and CEO Frederick Kempe

    The Atlantic Council strongly condemns the violence that occurred involving protestors and Turkish security personnel Tuesday evening outside an event that the Council was co-hosting for Turkish President Erdoğan.  

    The Atlantic Council has a 55-year history of promoting free speech, peaceful protest and civil dialogue to address global challenges. The Council frequently convenes small, off-the-record sessions such as the one for President Erdoğan, at which he fielded questions that addressed issues ranging from international to domestic challenges.

    Atlantic Council events never endorse a particular speaker but provide an independent platform for leaders to participate in candid conversations. The proper authorities will determine what, if any, actions should be taken in response to the violence. Such behavior only detracts from the Council’s foundational mission of promoting constructive US leadership alongside friends and allies to secure the future.

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  • Atlantic Council’s Istanbul Summit Affirms Transatlantic Engagement

    Speakers at the Atlantic Council’s Istanbul Summit on April 27 emphasized the importance of strengthening transatlantic bonds to the Middle East with the goal of jointly addressing challenges and harnessing opportunities.

    “We all need each other, and we are strong when we can work together, and pull in the same direction, and address the many challenges in the three regions,” said John Bass, the US ambassador to Turkey.

    “We’ve got some differences in the meantime, but how we deal with those differences… is an essential piece of what we do,” he added.

    This sentiment reflected the theme of this year’s summit: Strengthening Transatlantic Engagement with a Turbulent Region.

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