On February 5, Foreign Policy published a biweekly column featuring Scowcroft Center deputy director Matthew Kroenig and New American Engagement Initiative senior fellow Emma Ashford discussing the latest news in international affairs.
In this column, they discuss Biden’s approach to democratic backsliding in Myanmar, Russian protests to Navalny’s prison sentencing, the Longer Telegram on China, the value of a summit of democracies, and potential tradeoffs between values and interests in US foreign policy.
The Biden administration has promised to prioritize democracy and human rights. They’re also trying to balance against China. It’s a test of which way the administration will tilt: human rights, or great power competition—and a reminder that these two missions are in tension.
There are different tiers of countries for U.S. foreign policy. Washington can have the deepest cooperation with countries that share U.S. values and interests, like the U.K. and Japan. It needs to stand firm against countries that share neither values nor interests, like Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea.