Goodbye Grotius, Hello Putin
Russia’s provocations in the Kerch Strait aren’t just a challenge to Ukraine. Like Beijing in the South China Sea, Moscow is seeking to undermine international maritime law.
In Cyberwar, There Are Some (Unspoken) Rules
A recent article argues that the lack of legal norms invites cyberconflict. But governments know the price of overreach and are refraining from unleashing their full capabilities.
Don’t Let the U.S.-Japanese Alliance Get Out of Shape
Joint military exercises have kept the relationship strong despite Trump, but that could soon change.
Planning for the Post-Trump Wreckage
When the president eventually exits the White House, the rest of us will quickly have to make sense of the world he's left behind.
What’s Driving the U.S. Air Force Pilot Shortage?
It’s not leadership or combat culture driving pilots out of the service.
The Afghan War Isn’t Being Won, Says New Pentagon Audit
A new summary of the country’s troubles by a special inspector general doesn’t paint an optimistic picture.
I’m Sorry for Creating the ‘Gerasimov Doctrine’
I was the first to write about Russia’s infamous high-tech military strategy. One small problem: it doesn't exist.
The Military’s ‘Readiness’ Scam Worked Again
The Pentagon always complains for more money – and politicians always eventually give in.
The World Doesn’t Need Any More Nuclear Strategies
The Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review answers questions nobody should be asking.
Trump’s National Security Strategy Is Nothing Like the British Empire’s ‘Blue Water’ Policy
The historical analogy is wrong — whichever way you look at it.
What Would a Saudi-Iran War Look Like? Don’t look now, but it is already here
After eight years at Foreign Policy, here are the ten most popular Best Defense posts
The ouster of Mattis: Some follow-up details and a White House response
After eight years at Foreign Policy, here are the ten most popular Best Defense posts.
Moral Repugnance: A Response to ‘Can’t Kill Enough to Win? Think Again’
There are multiple ways to describe retired Lt. Cols. David Bolgiano and John Taylor’s article in the December issue of Proceedings.
It Is High Time to Do Away With the President’s Nuclear ‘Football’
The recent Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on nuclear weapons introduced some unsettling possibilities.
Australia Is Worried About America’s Ability to Lead
The West needs a strong, committed, engaged White House to hedge against China’s inexorable rise.
China Should Send 30,000 Troops Into North Korea
The only way to stand down from a nuclear confrontation is to reassure Kim Jong Un that the United States won’t — and can’t — invade.
Edgar on Strategy (Part X): Build your approach on the understanding that the global state system is here to stay
While some arguments for the decline of the state are insightful and important, none of them have stuck.
Edgar on Strategy (Part IX): To what end? The frequently missing ‘why’ of strategy
Policymakers must articulate the “why” informing a strategy and periodically revaluate whether it is achievable and what ought to come next.
My time in the rotation helps show why our approach in Afghanistan is doomed
The U.S. military’s way of operating in Afghanistan is a recipe for failure.