Robert D. Kaplan

Senior Fellow, Center for a New American Security

PATRON EVENT: The Return of Marco Polo's World

About the Topic

This is a Patron Event and will run from 6:30-8:00 PM.

In the lead essay of his recent book, The Return of Marco Polo’s World, Robert Kaplan lays out his unique vision of the world ’s rapidly changing power politics as harkening back to the thirteenth century. Join us to hear his compelling argument that “state failure, globalization and technological change have eroded state sovereignty and begun to restore an older world defined by culture and geography.”  

In his view, empire remains the organizing principle of world affairs. You will hear Mr. Kaplan’s unsettling assessment that Europe and the West are no longer a political force; rather, the old empires of Russia, Turkey and Iran are now competing to dominate a Eurasian supercontinent.

About the Speaker

Robert Kaplan is a renowned geopolitical analyst and bestselling author. Foreign Policy magazine has twice named him as one of the world's “Top 100 Global Thinkers.” He is also a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security and a senior advisor at Eurasia Group. He held the national security chair at the U.S. Naval Academy and was a member of the Pentagon’s Defense Policy Board.  

Mr. Kaplan is also the author of 18 books on geopolitics. In his words, he has “tried to avoid the herd instinct and searches out places and stories that the media has ignored, but which deserved coverage.” 

In 1994, he had the extraordinary prescience to predict “ ‘the coming anarchy’ of the early twenty-first century in which terrorism, and the dramatic rise of young males in the third world population, resource scarcity and sectarian and ethnic divides would erode the political fabric of the planet.” His view is that today’s greatest threat is not tyranny but anarchy.

James Traub of The Wall Street Journal calls Kaplan “an eloquent defender of foreign-policy realism” and a grand strategist.”