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Retro: Thomas P.M. Barnett: The WorldChanging Interview
Jamais Cascio, 24 Aug 05

We're always looking for opportunities to talk with interesting and provocative worldchangers. These interviews tend not to be the run-of-the-mill rehash of the same talking points one could find elsewhere; we really try to get people to talk about the ways in which their work and ideas are worldchanging. This is particularly important when the person being interviewed is not someone who might immediately spring to mind as having a "WorldChanging" perspective. Alex's December, 2004, conversation with Thomas P.M. Barnett is an excellent example of this. Barnett is a military strategist, and his views on the role the United States should play internationally often get him lumped in -- incorrectly -- with the "neocon" movement. In reality, his views are much more complex than that, and over the course of the lengthy discussion, we begin to see why he is the perfect subject of a WorldChanging Interview.

We need to rethink the connections between security and developmental economics. We need to stop having an antagonistic relationship between military people and the development community, because the fact is, we're not succeeding at all in these failed states. Insecure places are desperately poor places. Desperate poverty breeds insecurity. We need a new approach, a more comprehensive and integrated approach that sees these problems as two sides of the same coin and thinks differently about how to solve them.
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