Theory

A person wears a QAnon sweatshirt during a pro-Trump rally

America’s Conspiratorial Delusions Weren’t Born Under Trump

False realities have been part of the U.S. political scene for decades.

A Brazilian demonstrator takes part in a protest against mandatory COVID-19 vaccination in São Paulo on Dec. 22, 2020.

In Brazil, QAnon Has a Distinctly Bolsonaro Flavor

A deluge of online conspiracy theories is dividing an already polarized country.

A cutout of the Goddess of Democracy stands out in a sea of light during a vigil to remember the Tiananmen Square movement on its 10th anniversary in Hong Kong, on June 4, 1999.

Autocrats Have a Playbook—Now Democrats Need One Too

With democracy still in retreat, it is time to get smart about fighting back.

A QAnon sticker is seen on the back of a car

QAnon Will Survive Yet Another Apocalyptic Disappointment

The sprawling conspiracy theory’s visions of a hidden world have always been an excuse for failure.

A supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump holds a Confederate flag outside the Senate Chamber after breaching the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

Washington Must Treat White Supremacist Terrorism as a Transnational Threat

After the Capitol attack, the U.S. government needs to recognize racist extremists as a national security risk and create a high-level counterterrorism czar to disrupt their financing and dismantle their networks.

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Wonks Gone Wild

In FP’s 50 years, its writers’ forecasts have ranged from prescient to spectacularly wrong. That’s because the field of international relations rewards catastrophic thinking.

isolation-american-foreign-policy-50-years-noma-bar-illustration-article

The Case for a Middle Path in U.S. Foreign Policy

Neither pure isolationism nor unchecked internationalism has served the United States well. It’s time for a third option.

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump in Miami

Miami’s Spanish-Language Media Is Overrun With Trumpist Conspiracies

Right-wing Cuban Americans believe they’re fighting U.S. communism.

A car with a flag endorsing QAnon

QAnon Is Trumpism Now

The sprawling conspiracy theory is dying—and being reborn as the new normal of the Republican Party.

A QAnon supporter

As QAnon Copes With Trump’s Likely Loss, They Wonder Where Q Is

The pseudonymous leader of the conspiracy theory hasn’t posted for days.

Car decorations reference the QAnon conspiracy theory at a campaign rally for U.S. President Donald Trump

In Likely Lost Election, QAnon Sees Even More Conspiracies

Trump’s most dedicated supporters are going into a spiral online.

A man carries a QAnon conspiracy theory sign

QAnon Followers Trust ‘the Plan,’ Not the Polls

Many adherents of the conspiracy theory believe Trump’s victory is preordained.

A demonstrator holds up a placard reading “Fake News: Trump Tested Positive” in Konstanz, Germany, on Oct. 3, 2020.

The Case Against Big Tech’s Election Strategies

Misinformation is hyperlocal. Attempts to counter it should be, too.

A Trump supporter holds a “Q” sign at a rally in Ohio on Aug. 4, 2018.

QAnon’s Sound and Fury

Where the conspiracy came from and what it means for politics at home—and abroad.

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.

A person wearing a QAnon T-shirt takes part in a rally in Brooklyn, New York, on Aug. 9.

QAnon Destroys Lives. Now It’s Coming for Congress.

It’s hard—but possible—to save people from the conspiracy theory’s grip.

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.

Spectators sit on top of a pillar at the World War II Memorial in the National Mall as fireworks explode in Washington, D.C., on July 4.

What American Century?

Those who worry about—or cheer—its demise don’t realize that there never was one.

US President Donald Trump attends the UN Climate Action Summit on Sept. 23, 2019 at the United Nations Headquaters in New York City.

Countries Should Mind Their Own Business

Two cheers for a classic idea that’s been out of fashion for too long: state sovereignty.

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump wearing “QAnon” t-shirts wait in line before a campaign rally at Freedom Hall in Johnson City, Tennessee, on Oct. 1, 2018.

QAnon Goes to Iran

Restart, a fringe Iranian dissident group, shows how conspiracy spreads—and what that means for U.S. politics.