Trump: Not the Peace Candidate

Donald Trump presents his worldview as fresh and new. He promises to shake up the U.S. foreign policy elite that Hillary Clinton represents. He heaps scorn on the Obama administration’s approach to the Middle East, its failures to engage Russia and North Korea, its woeful neglect of the U.S. military. He wants U.S. allies to pull their own weight. Trump intends to put “America...
read more

Elite Smackdown

You know you’re a wonk when your nighttime reading is as thick as the latest Stephen King novel, but no one in your family is clamoring to borrow your doorstop. Consider, for instance, the Iran nuclear agreement. It’s a mere 159 pages, but it’s full of technical language that requires the parsing of a physicist. The deal’s opponents in Congress, the ones who would like to rip it up as...
read more

China on the Defensive?

It has not been a good month for China. On July 12, an international court of arbitration at The Hague handed the Philippines a huge victory over China in the struggle over the South China Sea. A few days before that, South Korea decided to go forward with the deployment of the US Army’s Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System (THAAD), a move that Beijing has consistently opposed. And then...
read more

The Myth of Trump’s Alternative Worldview

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has staked out a foreign policy position quite distinct from his opponent, Hillary Clinton. It is not, however, “isolationist” (contra Jeb Bush and many others) or “less aggressively militaristic” (economist Mark Weisbrot in The Hill) or “a jolt of realpolitik” (journalist Simon Jenkins in The Guardian). With all due respect to these...
read more

Russia Hacks the World

The email trove that WikiLeaks released on the eve of the Democratic National Convention has all the hallmarks of a dirty tricks campaign. The messages reveal, among other things, that the Democratic National Committee tried its best to tilt the electoral playing field in favor of Hillary Clinton. For anyone who has had even the slightest interaction with the Democratic Party — or mainstream...
read more

The Surprising Popularity of Military Coups

News of the military coup in Turkey was dribbling in on Saturday afternoon when I was having lunch with a group of six friends in West Virginia. Suddenly, one person looked up from her salad and said, “If Trump gets elected, I’d support a military coup in this country.” At least one other person at the table seconded her opinion. I was astonished. Since when had the “military option”...
read more