History

Early versions of Foreign Policy featured a narrow format and a different logo color for each season—blue for winter, green for spring, burgundy for summer, and yellow or brown for fall.

Consensus Lost

How FP set out to change the world.

A young man pushes a cart in front of Tigrayan flags at Martyrs Square in the city of Mekelle, on Sept. 9, 2020.

The War in Tigray Is a Fight Over Ethiopia’s Past—and Future

The current conflict is the latest battle in a long-running war over the country’s identity as a unitary or federal state. The United States can restore its credibility as an honest broker by helping resolve it.

African infantrymen of the French Army in 1915

In the Trenches With the Colonizer

The French Senegalese writer David Diop revises the modernist archetype with a protagonist long excluded from World War I literature: the African soldier on the front lines.

People celebrate Biden's election in Boston

America’s Messiness Is Its Strength

As in the Holy Roman Empire, U.S. complexity and diversity let it thrive.

An undated poster, circulated during World War I, by the Franco-American Union.

The United States Can’t Sleepwalk Into the Coming Military Revolutions

European leaders misjudged World War I. America shouldn’t repeat their mistake.

U.S. President Donald Trump stands on stage with Vice President Mike Pence

Trump’s Language of Hate Has Deep Roots in American Religious Bigotry

Catholics were the first scapegoats of the new republic, but others followed.

Diplomacy-board-game-foreign-policy-Trump-Kissinger-JFK-Barr-Nikole-Rifkin-illustration

The Game That Ruins Friendships and Shapes Careers

For me, Diplomacy is an addictive quarantine hobby. For my high school frenemy, it was training for the Trump administration.

John F. Kennedy feeds the pigeons at the Piazza San Marco in Venice circa 1937.

The 4 False Deathbeds of John F. Kennedy

The 35th president grew up wealthy, privileged, callow—and extremely sensitive to the weakness of others.

A statue of Christopher Columbus, which was toppled to the ground by protesters

How Bad History Feeds Far-Right Fantasies

Justifying colonialism’s atrocities plays a toxic role in politics today.

A protester waves a QAnon flag

QAnon’s Creator Made the Ultimate Conspiracy Theory

There’s no fact the sprawling movement can’t dismiss—and no madness it can’t imagine.

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows (right) watches as U.S. President Donald Trump walks off Marine One upon arrival at Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, on Oct. 2 following the president's COVID-19 diagnosis.

What Happens When Presidents Get Sick?

Just when the U.S. public needs clarity about Trump’s health, tradition and the president’s proclivities make that unlikely.

A protester carries a “Register to Vote” sign during a peaceful demonstration against police brutality in Los Angeles on June 6.

Our Top Weekend Reads

Media bubbles get a reality check, Sudan toys with Tel Aviv, and the ivory tower comes full circle.

United Nations peacekeepers in the Middle East circa 1955.

Document of the Week: The Mighty U.N. Fighting Force That Never Was

After World War II, the United States envisioned the creation of a big-power fighting force to keep world peace. But the ambitious plan foundered amid bickering between Washington and Moscow.

Indian author Pankaj Mishra in 2006.

You Can Only See Liberalism From the Bottom

Why Pankaj Mishra sees the ideology’s limits more clearly than its most powerful fans.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, meeting during the Casablanca conference, preparing the Normandy and Italy landing, which lasted from Jan. 14 to 24, 1943.

The Postwar Global Order That Never Happened

After the wreckage of World War II, a new form of global community had huge momentum—but the United States rejected it.

General Douglas MacArthur and Japan's Emperor Hirohito in 1945, a few weeks after Japan's surrender on September 2, 1945.

The Dangerous Illusion of Japan’s Unconditional Surrender

For decades, U.S. foreign policy has been badly distorted by the way that World War II ended.

Police stands guard around the statue of Jan Pieterszoon Coen in Hoorn, the Netherlands, on June 19.

The Dutch Are Uncomfortable With Being History’s Villains, Not Victims

A refusal to confront colonial atrocities persists in the Netherlands.

Empty envelopes of opened vote-by-mail ballots for the presidential primary are stacked on a table at King County Elections in Renton, Washington on March 10, 2020.

‘The Tea Leaves Suggest That if He Doesn’t Cheat, He’s Going to Lose’

The presidential historian Timothy Naftali notes there’s no historical precedent for delaying an election, even in the middle of major wars, but Trump’s Republican Party is all about holding on to power.

Reenactors dressed as Greek hoplites attack Persians during an event  to commemorate the 2,500-year anniversary of the Battle of Marathon in Marathon, Greece, on Sept. 10, 2011.

Oh God, Not the Peloponnesian War Again

Western strategists need to learn some new history. Here are eight suggestions from Asia.