New AtlanticistMar 4, 2021
A three-step plan for reviving the transatlantic alliance
By Edward Fishman, Mark D. Simakovsky
Reviving the transatlantic partnership will require more than the traditional close diplomacy, warm rhetoric, and lofty white papers. It will demand bold action that proves the United States and Europe can still accomplish major feats together.
Edward Fishman is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center. His research focuses on Europe, Russia, the future of the international order, and the use of economic sanctions as a tool of foreign policy and deterrence strategy.
From 2015 to 2017, Mr. Fishman served at the US Department of State as a member of the secretary’s Policy Planning Staff. In that role, Mr. Fishman advised Secretary of State John Kerry on Europe and Eurasia and led the staff’s work on economic sanctions, long-range strategic planning, and international order and norms. During his time on the Policy Planning Staff, Mr. Fishman formulated strategic plans on a wide range of issues, including the preservation of transatlantic unity on Russia sanctions, the creation of a new economic pressure campaign in response to North Korea’s nuclear provocations, and diplomacy in Europe surrounding the British referendum to exit the European Union. Mr. Fishman also managed the secretary of state’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board and represented the State Department at the National Security Council-led Strategic Planning Small Group, an interagency body that conducted wide-ranging strategic assessments of trends in geopolitics, economics, and technology.
Before joining the Policy Planning Staff, Mr. Fishman was the Russia and Europe lead in the State Department’s Office of Economic Sanctions Policy and Implementation, where he played a central role in designing and negotiating international sanctions in response to Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. In that position, Mr. Fishman traveled widely in Europe to negotiate joint policies with the European Union (EU) and solidify support for sanctions. Earlier, Mr. Fishman served as a member of the Iran sanctions team, where he developed policies to strengthen implementation of sanctions against Iran and maintain pressure during the international nuclear negotiations.
Outside of the State Department, Mr. Fishman has served at the Pentagon as special assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on the Chairman’s Action Group (CAG), at the Treasury Department as special assistant to the under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, and at IronNet Cybersecurity on the strategy and business development team. Mr. Fishman is a recipient of the State Department’s Superior Honor Award (twice) and its Meritorious Honor Award, recognized for his contributions to US policy toward Ukraine, Russia, Belarus, and Iran. He was a 2016 Next Generation National Security Fellow at the Center for a New American Security and is an alumnus of the Presidential Management Fellows Program.
Prior to his government service, Mr. Fishman was an editor at Foreign Affairs. His writings have appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, and other outlets, and he appears regularly as an expert commentator on television and radio programs. A native of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, Mr. Fishman holds a B.A. in history from Yale University and an M.Phil. in international relations from the University of Cambridge.