Foreign Policy

Personnel and Policy

“Personnel is policy” is a decent maxim as a guide to indications as to the directions a new administration will take.  A president-elect’s prospective appointees generally have histories and perspectives that are well-known.  Whom he chooses tells us something about ...

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How progressive is realism?

If you need a break from impeachment trial fatigue and are interested in American foreign policy, I have a reading recommendation for you, and you don’t even have to click on a link—it directly follows this paragraph.  It’s a review ...

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What’s with Dershowitz?

Alan Dershowitz had already put himself outside the mainstream of constitutional legal thought with his claim that a president could be impeached only because of criminal or “criminal-like” (whatever that means) behavior.  But that wasn’t enough; in his defense of ...

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More on Iran

Just a short post today to pass on two reading recommendations that put the current crisis with Iran in useful perspective. If you read nothing else on the crisis in the next couple of days, you should take a look ...

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War is Peace

“We took action last night to stop a war.  We did not take action to start a war.”  So said the stable genius who occupies the White House.  His Secretary of State similarly claimed that Americans are safer now, even ...

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Ukrainegate and the Russia Problem

Some time ago I expressed concern that revulsion over Russian interference in US domestic politics and over the Trump/Putin bromance works against a realistic approach to our relations with Russia. Yes, we should oppose Russian wrongdoing, but we still need ...

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Syria

In the well-justified outrage at Trump’s tossing the Syrian Kurds to the tender mercies of his pal Erdogan, there has been a tendency to lose sight of the bigger questions regarding the US presence in Syria. What are we doing ...

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Bye bye Bolton

In my search for silver linings following the 2016 election disaster, I observed that Trump during the campaign had made a case for a more restrained, less interventionist foreign policy. He hasn’t consistently followed through, but his basic instinct is ...

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Short Takes

Two reading recommendations for those who are interested: More on the spectre of ’72—New York Magazine’s Ed Kilgore has done a fine piece that covers much of what I wrote in my own post on the subject, but a lot ...

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That Bipartisan Consensus: An Added Note

I can’t help it: when a widely read pundit writes a column saying pretty much the same as what I have just said, I must point it out.  Here is Peter Beinart, who might well have read my post of ...

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