Eric Edelman

Practitioner Senior Fellow

Fast Facts

  • Career minister in the U.S. Foreign Service
  • Undersecretary of defense for policy in the George W. Bush Administration
  • Ambassador to Finland and Turkey
  • Recipient of Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service
  • Expertise on defense policy, nuclear policy and proliferation, diplomacy

Areas Of Expertise

  • Foreign Affairs
  • American Defense and Security
  • War and Terrorism

Eric Edelman, practitioner senior fellow, retired as a career minister from the U.S. Foreign Service in 2009, after having served in senior positions at the Departments of State and Defense as well as the White House. As the undersecretary of defense for policy (2005-2009), he oversaw strategy development as the Defense Department’s senior policy official with global responsibility for bilateral defense relations, war plans, special operations forces, homeland defense, missile defense, nuclear weapons and arms control policies, counter-proliferation, counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism, arms sales, and defense trade controls. Edelman served as U.S. ambassador to the Republics of Finland and Turkey in the Clinton and George W. Bush Administrations and was principal deputy assistant to Vice President Dick Cheney for national security affairs. Edelman has been awarded the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the Presidential Distinguished Service Award, and several Department of State Superior Honor Awards. In January of 2011 he was awarded the Legion d’Honneur by the French government. In 2016, he served as the James R. Schlesinger Distinguished Professor at the Miller Center.

Eric Edelman News Feed

Turkish President Recep Tayipp Erdoğan is likely to be reelected to another term on Sunday despite widespread speculation that he might lose. He has already ruled the Turkish Republic for almost a decade longer than its founder, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, and his victory at the polls will undoubtedly keep Turkey on its increasingly nationalist and authoritarian trajectory.
Eric Edelman The Dispatch
Eric and Eliot mark the latter’s return from his European travels with dark musings about why they have not yet been sanctioned by the Russian government. They also discuss Finland’s adaptation to NATO membership, the differing perspectives of the Nordic and Baltic states, whether or not the neutrality of the “global south” in the Russo-Ukraine war is consequential, and Ukraine’s post-Bakhmut prospects.
Eric Edelman The Bulwark
Will Inboden, the Executive Director of the William Clements Center for National Security, joins Eric to discuss the alleged “October Surprise” in 1980 — the long bruited charge that Reagan campaign manager Bill Casey colluded with Iranian intermediaries to forestall the release of the U.S. hostages until after the election.
Eric Edelman The Bulwark
Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko is the only European leader to have held power longer than Vladimir Putin—but perhaps not for much longer. His return to the public spotlight on Monday has not quieted suspicion that he is gravely ill.
Eric Edelman The Bulwark
The Russian military that existed before the war has been obliterated. This is one of the biggest bargains imaginable given the relatively low cost of inflicting devastating losses on one of America’s two near peer rivals. American (and NATO) assistance, and the losses suffered by the invading Russian forces, have not, however, been sufficient to help Ukraine win the war. The fighting continues.
Eric Edelman The Dispatch
While Eliot is still in Europe, Eric welcomes former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine (1998-2000) Stephen Pifer to the show. Steve is affiliated with the Stanford Center on International Security and Cooperation and is a non-resident fellow at the Brookings Institution. They discuss VE Day in Europe, the drone attack on the Kremlin, the prospects for the Ukrainian counter-offensive and the types of military equipment that would be most useful for the Ukrainians.
Eric Edelman The Bulwark