From Moral Responsibility to Magical Thinking: How Biden Changed His Mind on Afghanistan
After 9/11, Biden embraced the idea that U.S. troops should leave the country better than how they found it. Now, as president, he’s withdrawing them regardless.
The country can’t contain insurgent movements until it has a comprehensive national plan for tackling them.
Biden Plans Big Pledge on U.S. Emissions Cuts
Washington wants to reclaim climate leadership and get other major countries to ramp up ambitions.
Biden Just Made a Historic Break With the Logic of Forever War
But will he really end the United States’ other open-ended conflicts?
Biden’s War at Home Over Afghanistan Is Just Beginning
After making the right call on withdrawal, the U.S. president better get ready for second-guessing.
The Anthropocene Is Overrated
The way we talk about climate change and our effect on the planet is all wrong—and increasingly dangerous.
America’s Come-From-Behind Pandemic Victory
China was the global winner of the coronavirus disaster—until the United States beat the odds.
The United Kingdom Finally Acknowledges Its Hard-Power Limits
In its new defense and foreign-policy posture, the country is no longer trying to punch above its weight.
What to Do With U.S. Forces in the Persian Gulf
As the United States leaves Afghanistan, the question of troops in the Middle East to support the Afghan mission looms large.
Biden’s Back Channel on the Amazon
Rocky Brazil-U.S. diplomacy on protecting the rainforest approaches a pivotal moment.
Britain’s Post-Brexit Foreign Policy Can Be a Force for Good
Boris Johnson shouldn’t shy away from global leadership and the morally driven approach that protected Kosovars and Iraqi Kurds in the 1990s.
Arafat’s Nephew Is Coming for Abbas
Veteran diplomat Nasser al-Qudwa could prompt a realignment within Palestinian politics.
Is Leaving Afghanistan Misguided or Overdue?
Biden’s withdrawal announcement is meant to end a 20-year war, but Washington has been dragged back into conflicts before.
U.S. Slaps Wide-Ranging Sanctions on Moscow—but Stops Short of Killer Blow
The Biden administration takes a novel, broad-brush approach to Russia’s nefarious activity.
Biden to Announce Nominees for Key Diplomatic Posts
Experts and former diplomats want to see Biden pick up the pace on nominations to better compete with China on the world stage.
America and India Need a Little Flexibility at Sea
A U.S. operation targeting Indian claims has drawn unnecessary outrage.
U.S. Mounts All-Out Effort to Save Iran Nuclear Deal
Chief negotiator Robert Malley begins to forge a compromise with both Iran and hard-liners at home.
The Wisdom of Leaving Afghanistan
The United States hadn’t accomplished its goals in 20 years. The next few weren’t going to make much of a difference.
Yes, the Atrocities in Xinjiang Constitute a Genocide
Beijing’s own words and actions highlight the intent to end the Uyghurs as a people.
Ecuador Just Voted Against Populism, but Its Democracy Is Far from Healthy
Conservative Guillermo Lasso will take office as an isolated president with a weak mandate, tasked with restoring faith in the country's institutions.
Taiwan and China Are Locked in Economic Co-Dependence
Both sides have leverage but have been reluctant to use it.
Biden Is Done with Afghanistan. Is Afghanistan Done With America?
Pulling out all U.S. troops is the administration’s risky plan to pressure Kabul and the Taliban to make peace.
Biden’s Withdrawal Plan Sets the Clock Ticking in Afghanistan
With troops to depart on Sept. 11, the next five months are critical for any chance of peace.
The World Should Treat Pandemics Like It Treats Chemical Weapons
Plans for a global pandemic treaty don’t solve the problem of China’s refusal to cooperate.
Asian Americans Belong, but Sometimes It’s Hard for Us to Believe It
Oscar-nominated “Minari” is about flowering in the United States—with the aid of our elders.
Sputnik V’s Biggest Legacy May Be Political Turmoil
In Eastern European countries that have accepted the Russian vaccine, destabilization has followed.
A Hashemite Family Reunion Can’t Hide Jordan’s Woes
Making nice after an alleged coup attempt obscures serious challenges, including water scarcity, a refugee crisis, and unhelpful neighbors.
Why the World Won’t Criticize Chad
Western democracies look the other way as a dictatorial ally in the war on terror holds another election marred by violence and intimidation.
The Summit That Can’t Fail
Japan’s prime minister visits Washington at a time when, thanks to Chinese aggressiveness, U.S.-Japan relations are critical.
The Future of Solar Is Small
Local community projects are already powering parts of London and could pave the way for a green transition.
Nuclear Sabotage Could Be What Iran Needed
This week’s attack on an Iranian enrichment facility has improved the country’s negotiating position.
Assad Regime Continues Stonewalling U.S. Aid to Syria
Syrian government is using aid deliveries as a weapon, State Department reports.
Biden to Complete Full Afghanistan Withdrawal by Sept. 11
The move will finally end the United States’ longest war.
India’s Suffering Female Farmers Have the Most to Lose
The country’s rural Dalits are already exploited—and know it can get worse.
Jordan’s King Is His Own Worst Enemy
There’s much more evidence of the monarch’s poor governance than a foreign conspiracy against him.
Asaduddin Owaisi’s Bid to Redefine Indian Secularism
Muslims need their own nationwide party, he believes. And he’s going to build it.
How Brexit Lit the Fuse in Northern Ireland
Loyalist fears that Boris Johnson is abandoning them have sparked a wave of violence that could endanger the Good Friday Agreement.
Biden Faces His First Disasters in Yemen and Afghanistan
Unless it changes tack, the administration is about to make bad situations even worse.
The United States Can’t Welcome More Refugees Without Reforming Its Resettlement System
Trump gutted the programs that helped aid and place migrants. Now Biden is left with a mess.
You Say ‘Coup,’ I Say ‘Koo’
India is a warning about unintended consequences for those looking to regulate Big Tech in the United States.
Ukraine Needs a Clear Path to NATO Membership
Russia’s recent aggression along its border shows why Kyiv needs decisive action from the alliance.
When Clean Energy Is Powered by Dirty Labor
Most solar panels come from China, and using them to fuel a clean energy transition risks reliance on Uyghur slave labor in Xinjiang.
The ICC’s Israel Investigation Could Backfire
It’s more likely to inflame nationalist sentiments than change anything on the ground.
Even With Seoul Paying More, America Can’t Afford to Defend South Korea
A rich and strong nation can pay for its own military.
State Dept. Out to Tackle Diversity Failings With New Appointment
Career diplomat Gina Abercrombie-Winstanley will be tasked with reversing the department’s record of big promises and little results.
Sanctioning India Would Spoil the Quad
Let India buy its weapons from Moscow. The real strategic threat is Beijing.
How Biden Will—and Won’t—Battle the Pentagon
What the new president really thinks about the military—and what the military really thinks about him.
Israel’s Government Has Nobody at the Wheel
A cycle of deadlocked elections has left the country without a functioning administration—and a foreign policy set on autopilot.
A Global Minimum Corporate Tax Is a Bad Idea Whose Time Hasn’t Come
Janet Yellen’s proposal has all but zero chance of success.
China’s Crackdown on Islam Brings Back Memories of 1975 Massacre
Islamophobia has spread far beyond the persecuted Uyghur minority.
A Masterful Account of America’s Doomed Afghanistan Mission
Wesley Morgan’s “The Hardest Place” is embedded reporting at its finest.
Bangladesh’s Long Journey From ‘Basket Case’ to Rising Star
But 50 years after independence, an authoritarian turn casts a shadow over the country’s future.
Yes, You Can Use the T-Word to Describe China
China is governed by a totalitarian regime. Why is that so hard to say?
Is Russia Preparing to Go to War in Ukraine?
Troop buildup near Ukraine’s border is the largest since 2014.
Sanctions Won’t Stop Nord Stream 2. Diplomacy Will.
Quiet negotiations with Berlin can do what economic coercion can’t.
It’s Time to Take Bernard-Henri Lévy Seriously
A close reading of the philosophical career, and influence, of France’s most ridiculed public intellectual.
COVID-19’s Baby Bust
Disasters usually come with falling birth rates. But this time, they might not recover unless governments take action now.
The Return of Palestinian Politics
Elections in May will be the first since 2006—a remarkable but risky gambit.
The Sullivan Model
Jake Sullivan, Biden’s “once-in-a-generation intellect,” is facing a once-in-a-generation challenge.
South America’s Election Super Sunday
“None of the above” is a popular vote in Ecuador and Peru, spelling legitimacy troubles.
Japan Toughens on China as Beijing Issues Threats
Pro-engagement politicians are aging out of the Liberal Democratic Party.
Myanmar Is on the Precipice of Civil War
Existing conflicts with ethnic groups add fuel to the fire.
Britain’s Immigration Overhaul Is Shortsighted
The United Kingdom needs to prepare for future climate migrants rather than obsessing over asylum-seekers.
Benin’s King of Cotton Makes Its Democracy a Sham
Talon’s procedural reforms have hollowed out fair elections and are a master class in entrenching autocracy.
It’s Still Hard to Be America’s Ally
Biden wants to rebuild relationships, but old friends aren’t so sure.
A Chance to Stop Syria and Russia From Using Chemical Weapons
Moscow and Damascus have evaded all accountability, but Biden can build a coalition to change that.
On Immigration, ‘Building Back Better’ Isn’t Enough
Rather than taking Obama-era policies as a baseline, Biden needs to start from scratch.
Peru’s Election Is About to Make Its Problems Worse
This weekend’s vote will deepen the pandemic-ravaged country’s impasse.
How Erdogan Got His Groove Back
It’s been a difficult and dizzying few months for Turkey—which is just the way the president likes it.
Philippines Leaning Toward Allowing U.S. Troops After All
But the Biden administration still faces an unreliable ally in Duterte.
The End of Quiet Diplomacy in Myanmar
The U.N. dials up the pressure campaign against Myanmar’s putschists.
10 Years On, Syrians Have Not Given Up
A survivor of regime atrocities explains why the international community must act.
We Don’t Have the Words to Fight Anti-Asian Racism
Tangled questions of Asian identity need answers that aren’t defined by U.S. terminology alone.
French Secularism Isn’t Illiberal
Letting culture wars drive debate about “laïcité” obscures similarities between France and the United States.
Israel’s Osirak Option
As Netanyahu forms his government, the parallels between the politics that led to a strike on Iraq’s nuclear facility and those that could result in targeting Iran today are clear.
How Far Will the Ethiopian-Eritrean Alliance Go?
Former foes have found a common enemy in the TPLF. Will it lead beyond battlefield cooperation?
The Death of Neoliberalism Is Greatly Exaggerated
The West’s economic orthodoxy of the past 40 years has been shaken by the pandemic—but the fight isn’t nearly over yet.
China Has an Image Problem—but Knows How to Fix It
Many in Beijing realize a declining international reputation won’t help the country achieve its goals.
Will Australia’s New Defense Minister Play Bad Cop to China?
Peter Dutton stopped the refugee boats. His next job is stopping Beijing’s maritime militia.
The U.S.-China Clash Is About Ideology After All
Claims that the rivalry is purely geopolitical don’t hold water.
Big Talk on Big Tech—but Little Action
In both the U.S. and EU, antitrust and regulatory efforts against Facebook, Google, and Amazon are gaining traction. But no one’s about to break them up.
How Liberal Values Became a Business in Afghanistan
Washington promised to bring liberal democracy to Kabul. It created a bloated and ineffective sector of artificial NGOs instead.
Pakistan’s Geoeconomic Delusions
The country says it wants to pivot from hard power to economic power, but its economy begs to differ.
The World Needs a Post-Pandemic Health Treaty With Teeth
WHO has no power to demand openness or independently confirm data at present.
What’s Behind India’s Second Coronavirus Wave?
Waning immunity, new virus variants—India’s sharp surge could be caused by any number of alarming factors.
Taiwan’s COVID-19 Success Is Worryingly Smug
Beating the pandemic has made the government and people overly complacent about China.
Nobody Knows What Lebanon’s Currency Is Worth Anymore
In Lebanon’s absurd economy, money’s value depends on whom you ask.
Octogenarian Sherlock Holmes
Oscar-nominated “The Mole Agent” is a film noir take on life in a Chilean nursing home.
The West’s Obsession With ‘Good Refugees’ Is Bad Policy
Wealthy countries love to celebrate immigrant success stories, but they are letting many potentially productive citizens fall through the cracks.
Russia’s Buildup Near Ukraine Puts Team Biden on Edge
Is Russia testing the waters or just testing Biden?
Australia Is Under Pressure to Implement Magnitsky-Style Laws
Both Washington and the Australian public want more sanctions on China.
Russians Aren’t Buying Putin’s PR Stunts Anymore
To save its approval ratings, the Kremlin might be better focusing its energy elsewhere.
In Afghanistan, the Choice Isn’t Withdraw or Endless War
A middle path, with a greater role for India, is still possible—and preferable to either extreme.
Soccer’s Financial Crisis Could Transform Leagues Forever
Private equity’s power may eliminate promotion and relegation.
When Nature Conservation Goes Wrong
Environmentalists’ intent on saving the planet by protecting natural habitats are creating human disasters of their own.
It Is Western Europe’s Turn for a Brain Drain
Knowledge-sector jobs are heading to Eastern Europe, and the consequences could remake the EU.
What Is It to Be Human Anymore?
Walter Isaacson explores the future of gene editing. But that future is already here, and it’s more than a bit scary.
Latin America’s COVID-19 Fiasco Is Also a Crisis of Regional Integration
A spat at Mercosur’s 30th birthday marked a low point for regional cooperation.
Biden Needs to End His Staff Travel Ban Now
Only three top State Department officials have been allowed to travel abroad. That’s no way to preserve U.S. interests.
Are U.S. and Chinese Interests Really Opposed in Iran and Myanmar?
Beijing is making moves to ensure regional dominance in Southeast Asia and oil supplies from the Middle East. It could be shooting itself in the foot.
Biden’s Strategy in the Sahel Looks a Lot Like Trump’s
U.S. diplomacy is back in West Africa—but the United States is also back to its old counterterrorism playbook.
Ethiopia Needs a Constitutional Convention
Establishing an inclusive reform process could end the country’s stalemate between unitarists and ethnonationalists.
In Putinism, Hurting the United States Is All About Payback
Russia still hasn’t recovered from its own trauma.
Janet Yellen and Mario Draghi Have One Last Job
The U.S. treasury secretary and the Italian prime minister have spent decades shaping this economy. But can they control what comes next?
Great-Power Competition Is a Recipe for Disaster
The latest poorly defined buzzword in Washington is leading pundits and policymakers down a dangerous path.
Romanticizing Dissidents Plays Into the Hands of Repressive Governments
When it comes to Alexei Navalny and Aung San Suu Kyi, we can’t have it both ways.
Ukraine Cracks Down on Its Own Pro-Russian QAnon
With media bans and treason charges, well-financed conspiracy peddlers are being shut down.
U.S. Sanctions Are Killing Innocent Syrians
The Caesar Act isn’t hurting Assad; it’s harming civilians.
Congress Can Do Better to Fight Weaponized Corruption
An understaffed agency vital to U.S. security desperately needs a bigger budget.
Biden Plans to Repeal Trump-Era Sanctions on ICC
Human rights advocates say the move is long overdue.
Biden Team’s Embrace of Europe Falls Short on Content
Outcomes, not optics, should be the measure of U.S. policy in Europe.
Russian Opposition Leader Navalny Announces Hunger Strike
The Kremlin foe’s health has deteriorated dramatically since being transferred to a brutal penal colony.
Scottish Activists Want a Quiet, Safe, Progressive Independence
The new country would scurry to join NATO and the EU.
COVID-19 Made Sustainable Investments Go Viral
The pandemic has proved the viability of ESG metrics, and the business world may be changed for good.
China Wants a ‘Rules-Based International Order,’ Too
The question is who gets to write the codes—and whether the United States will live up to its own.
Russia and China Seek to Tie America’s Hands in Space
Biden should avoid the treaty trap set by Moscow and Beijing.
Russia and China Are Exploiting Europe’s Vaccine Shortfalls
Slovakia’s prime minister has resigned over a secret delivery of Moscow’s Sputnik V as Brussels struggles to keep the EU united.
Is Uganda Returning to the “Dark Days”?
As protesters disappear, Bobi Wine’s opposition is demanding answers from the Museveni regime.
Without Shipping, the Global Economy Sinks
The Suez Canal blockade is a reminder that sea freight still keeps the global economy running—and leaders and consumers ignore it at their peril.
How I Got Caught Up in the Great Vaccine Race
As China, the United States, and other nations roll out their COVID-19 cures, it’s hard to know where to get the jab.
An Arab Kingmaker in Israeli Politics?
With election results deadlocked, an Arab-led party is seen as a possible swing faction.
The United Nations Turns Up the Heat on Rajapaksa
As Sri Lanka’s human rights record worsens, the world body tries to hold the country accountable for past crimes.
Women Cut Out of the Afghan Peace Process
Two decades of progress are threatened by the Taliban return—and a hasty U.S. exit.
The U.S. Army Goes to School on Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict
Off-the-shelf air power changes the battlefield of the future.
Biden Can Help Armenia and Azerbaijan Make Peace. Here’s How.
Four steps Washington can take to facilitate a lasting end to the conflict.
In Brazil, Vaccine Diplomacy Can Help Save the Climate
Washington should bypass Bolsonaro and open a direct dialogue on Amazon deforestation with local leaders in regions hit hard by COVID-19.
India’s Rich Farmers Are Holding Up Reforms Designed to Help the Poor
Don’t listen to the activists. Millions of Indian farmers will benefit from Modi’s new laws.
A Green Africa Is the Key to a Greener World
The United States won’t be a global leader in climate change until it works with African nations.
China’s Military Could Turn Small Clashes Into Major Conflicts
It’s not clear who’s in command when things go wrong.
The United States Must Pay the United Nations What It Owes
There are few better ways for the country to reclaim its credibility and moral authority.
Protests Unite Myanmar’s Ethnic Groups Against Common Foe
The shared experience of military violence has shifted political objectives among the ethnic majority.
Doctors on the Front Lines of the World’s Worst Humanitarian Crisis
Director Skye Fitzgerald’s Oscar-nominated documentary “Hunger Ward” chronicles Yemeni health care workers as they wrestle with famine and violence.
WHO Says COVID-19 Likely Started With Animals, Not Laboratory Leak
The long-awaited report is unlikely to quell concerns about China’s influence over the investigation.
Records Expose China’s Maritime Militia at Whitsun Reef
Beijing claims they are fishing vessels. The data shows otherwise.
The Global Race To Vaccinate
Facing new coronavirus variants and threats of backsliding, the world's effort to protect its most vulnerable populations must accelerate
China and Europe Are Breaking Over Human Rights
Europe’s leaders want autonomy to strike deals with Beijing, but public outcry over the Uyghurs is forcing their hand.
The COVID-19 Global Response Index
From FP Analytics: A country-by-country assessment of government responses to the pandemic.
Biden Revives the Truman Doctrine
His call to wage a global war for freedom echoes the dawn of the Cold War.
Biden Must Follow the Law and Sanction Nord Stream Now
Why has the administration been so half-hearted on a malign Russian influence project?
This Is Europe’s Vaccine Rollout Going According to Plan
Member states are shirking responsibility for the system they designed—even when they’re the primary beneficiaries.
Will It Ever Be Anwar Ibrahim’s Turn?
At 73, Malaysia’s embattled opposition leader has had the top job snatched away from him every time.
Rio de Janeiro Faces Perfect Storm of Climate Change
Coastal cities need to experiment with different strategies to boost resilience.
‘Baizuo’ Is a Chinese Word Conservatives Love
Whether you support Xi or Trump, sneering at progressives is a shared hobby.
Biden Looks to Contain China—but Where’s the Asian NATO?
The United States needs a game plan for a continent that’s home to two-thirds of the world’s population and its biggest rival.
Social Media Is an Intel Gold Mine. Why Aren’t Governments Using It?
“To platform or to deplatform” is the wrong debate.
How a U.S.-Iran Deal Helps Red States
Republican districts stand to benefit most from the economic windfall that a revived JCPOA would bring.
Has Israel Pushed Realpolitik to Its Limits?
Two new books examine how an isolated state managed to expand its diplomatic horizons.
Why Is Putin Afraid of Jehovah’s Witnesses?
Since they were labeled an extremist group in 2017, more than 400 have been charged or convicted.
Biden Takes Small Steps Toward Feminist Foreign Policy
Biden’s push for gender equality is a huge change from Trump, but experts stop short of calling it a feminist foreign policy.
We All Live in Germany’s World
How the German government accelerated the 20th century’s economic march toward neoliberalism.
The Wounds of the Bosnian Genocide Haven’t Healed
An Oscar-nominated film exposes the crimes of Srebrenica at a time when the perpetrators are still celebrated in Serbia and beyond.
Now Russia Has Its Own Ultimatum for Twitter
If Twitter doesn’t remove content Putin dislikes, he’ll ban it. But that will hurt him more than the platform.
Europeans Fear Iran Nuclear Window Closing
The Biden administration rebuffed European pleas to lift some sanctions in its first weeks in office.
Biden Rethinks Central America Strategy
Corrupt local elites thwarted some engagement efforts of the past decade, Biden’s new special envoy wrote.
Did Israel’s Security State Fail the COVID Test?
Netanyahu’s focus on maintaining ultra-Orthodox support as the pandemic raged didn’t help him win, but it has left deep scars.
Making Peace With Iran and North Korea Could Be Good for U.S. Workers
Trump tied American jobs to endless wars in the Middle East. Biden should link them to renewed diplomacy.
At China’s Borders, “Vaccine Passports” Just Got Real
In announcing it would prioritize travelers who had received Chinese-made vaccines, Beijing sparked outrage in countries where those aren’t available.
India Joins the Afghan Peace Negotiations
Long sidelined by Islamabad, Moscow, and Beijing, New Delhi is finally taking a seat at the table.
Are Europe’s Syrians Still Refugees?
The migrants who fled the Syrian war now want real membership in their new home countries.
50 Years After Independence, Bangladesh Bursts Into Geopolitics
The country is on the cusp of a second liberation—one that would end its relative isolation.
It’s Time to Prepare for U.S. Withdrawal From Afghanistan
There are no good choices, but staying on is the worst.
Beijing’s Schadenfreude Over the Capitol Riots Conceals Deep Anxiety
China’s elite are nervous about the coming succession crisis around Xi Jinping.