"The dirty little secret inside the Beltway is that international economics either scares or bores America's foreign policy community. Although foreign affairs analysts understand on some level that economics is important, they see it as distinct from geopolitics. As a result, very few of them have the necessary experience or training to talk about international economic matters.
It was not always this way. During the Cold War, some of America's greatest foreign policy minds — Dean Acheson, Walt Rostow, George Schultz or James Baker — had substantive backgrounds in economics, finance or business. This allowed them to navigate the waters between high politics and high finance with a minimum of fuss.
More specialization has left fewer foreign policy professionals and commentators with the capacity to talk about economics. This knowledge divorce can have bad long-term effects on American diplomacy.
(…) Foreign policy wonks like to talk about "high politics" and "low politics," and they usually relegate economic diplomacy into the latter category. In these times, however, economics is foreign policy. The United States is embroiled in a transatlantic dispute over fiscal policy. China and Russia are proposing that the dollar be replaced as the world's reserve currency. India is upset over U.S. criticisms about offshore outsourcing. These disputes can bleed over into the meat and potatoes of international security.
America needs a continuing education program for its foreign policy community, and the first course they should take is Economics 101."
Daniel Drezner, docente di Politica Internazionale alla Tufts University