What Putin Wants from Trump

What Putin Wants from Trump

I wrote this article about Russian efforts to cultivate Donald Trump as an asset last week for a Korean newspaper where it was published on Sunday. Little did I know that news would break this week of allegations that Russia has a file of damaging information it can...
Are We Near the End of NATO?

Are We Near the End of NATO?

If the number of eager applicants on a waiting list determines the strength of a club, then the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is in fine fettle. At its most recent gathering in July, NATO welcomed its 29th member — Montenegro — which means that the...
Keep Elites Accountable, But Don’t Dumb the Issues Down

Keep Elites Accountable, But Don’t Dumb the Issues Down

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...
The Trump Doctrine: Talk Loudly and Carry the Biggest Stick Possible

The Trump Doctrine: Talk Loudly and Carry the Biggest Stick Possible

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...
Russia’s DNC Hack is Just the Tip of the Tundra

Russia’s DNC Hack is Just the Tip of the Tundra

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...
Does the Brexit Vote Mark the End of Internationalism?

Does the Brexit Vote Mark the End of Internationalism?

This week might represent the beginning of the end for international cooperation. All the treaties, alliances, and unions that have incrementally strengthened the ties between nations over the last several centuries have suddenly been revealed as a house of cards,...
Donald Trump: Joker’s Wild

Donald Trump: Joker’s Wild

In poker, a wild card can add to the fun of the game. But it throws off the odds and makes the hands more unpredictable. That’s why poker purists prefer to keep jokers and other wild cards out of the deck. In American politics, the presidential primaries usually...
The Future of Europe Depends on This Vote in the Netherlands

The Future of Europe Depends on This Vote in the Netherlands

The future of Europe is being decided this week in the Netherlands. Perhaps you thought that the European Union’s fate would be voted up or down in June, when the United Kingdom holds its referendum on continued membership. The “leave now” constituency in the UK...
The Mad Hatters of Poland’s Tea Party Movement

The Mad Hatters of Poland’s Tea Party Movement

On a rainy day in April 1990, I journeyed to the outskirts of Warsaw to one of those functional Communist-era apartment building complexes to meet with Antoni Macierewicz. The opposition leader’s apartment contrasted sharply with its grim institutional surroundings....
What Comes After Empire?

What Comes After Empire?

  Let’s say the car stops and we get our teeth around the tire. Let’s say that we bite down hard enough to let out all the air from the U.S. empire. Now what? Those of us who have campaigned for a radical reduction of the U.S. military footprint overseas, for a...
The Kremlin’s Kool-Aid

The Kremlin’s Kool-Aid

We were nearing the end of dinner when the eminent personage leaned in my direction and began yelling at me. Up to that point, the argument among the five of us at the end of the long table at the restaurant had been heated but at a conversational volume. The fact...
Can Ukraine Gnaw Its Way out of Trouble?

Can Ukraine Gnaw Its Way out of Trouble?

Animals caught in a trap will often chew off a limb to escape. Even the occasional human being has resorted to this nightmare option, as the hiker Aron Ralston did when a boulder pinned his arm in a remote area of Utah wilderness. He’d run out of food, water, and...
The Cold War Never Ended

The Cold War Never Ended

In ’89, it looked as though the war had finally ended. For five decades the conflict had ground on, and both sides had grown weary of it all. There had been previous pauses in the hostilities, even a détente or two, but this truce looked permanent. Sure, there were...
Digging in on Drones and other Flawed Foreign Policy Strategies

Digging in on Drones and other Flawed Foreign Policy Strategies

The take-away from President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address was his line “wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.” He’s going to be the go-it-alone...