May 10, 2007
Political scientist Stephen Krasner and retired Gen. John Abizaid return to Stanford
Political science Professor Stephen D. Krasner, former director of Policy Planning at the U.S. State Department, and retired Army Gen. John P. Abizaid, former commander of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), are returning to Stanford.
Krasner, former director of the Center for Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law and deputy director of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, was tapped in 2005 by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to head the State Department's internal think tank. As director of policy planning, a position equivalent to an assistant secretary of state, Krasner was a driving force behind foreign assistance reform designed to target American foreign aid more effectively. Krasner also was involved in activities related to the promotion of good governance and democratic institutions around the world.
At Stanford, Krasner will be a center-affiliated faculty member and will resume his teaching duties as the Graham H. Stuart Professor of International Relations. An expert on failed and wrecked states, Krasner's research interests include work on market failure and distributional conflict in the international political economy, and on historical practices of sovereignty, especially with regard to domestic autonomy and non-intervention.
This is the second time Krasner has made the jump from academia to policymaking and back again. In 2001 and 2002, he was a member of the State Department's policy planning staff and worked with Rice at the National Security Council. He helped to formulate the Millennium Challenge Account, a bilateral development fund established in 2004 that links increased aid to developing countries to steps they take to improve governance and economic freedom.
Meanwhile, Abizaid has been named the first Annenberg Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, effective June 1. "His knowledge and experience in the national security arena are incredible, and we look forward to engaging him in a number of important Hoover projects over the course of the coming year," Hoover Director John Raisian said. A grant from the Walter and Leonore Annenberg Fund, made in honor of former Secretary of State and Hoover Distinguished Fellow George P. Shultz, has endowed the new position. At Hoover, Abizaid will focus on national security and foreign policy. It is his second stint at the think tank. In 1992-93, then Lt. Col. Abizaid was a national security fellow and worked on a project titled "Peacekeeping and America's Armed Forces."
As commander of CENTCOM from 2003 to 2007, Abizaid oversaw 250,000 U.S. troops conducting military operations in a 27-country region, from the Horn of Africa to the Arabian Peninsula to Central Asia and much of the Middle East. On May 1, Abizaid retired from the military following 34 years of service.