International Security Studies
Should the United States Change, Contain, or Engage Nuclear "Outliers" Iran and North Korea?
The National Conversation, a joint production of The Wilson Center and NPR, provides a non-partisan forum for deep dialogue and informed discussion of the most significant problems facing the nation and the world.
In the Bush era, Iran and North Korea were branded “rogue” states for their flouting of international norms, and changing their regimes was the administration’s goal. The Obama administration has chosen instead to call these countries nuclear “outliers” and has proposed means other than regime change to bring them back into “the community of nations.” Can the “outliers” be integrated into the international community? And how should the United States respond if outlier regimes eschew integration and continue to augment their nuclear capabilities?
Outlier States: American Strategies to Change, Contain, or Engage Regimes, the successor to Litwak's influential Regime Change: U.S. Strategy through the Prism of 9/11 (2007), explores this significant policy adjustment and raises questions about its feasibility and its possible consequences.