Who’s More Powerful, Jeff Bezos or Mohammed bin Salman? Neither.
The relationship between the two men proves that, even at a time of rapid technological and economic change, you can’t buy real power.
Welcome to the Belt and Road Pandemic
There’s one difference between the Wuhan virus and previous outbreaks in the region: China is now impossible to quarantine.
Outrage Culture Is Ruining Foreign Policy
As the 2020 presidential campaign heats up, U.S. politics is getting harder and harder to explain to the rest of the world.
Trump’s Growing European Base
Attitudes toward the United States are improving across the Atlantic—but only because the right wing is getting stronger.
Why Is the United States So Bad at Foreign Policy?
It’s not just Trump. Washington hasn’t had a coherent strategy for decades.
Just in Time for Lunar New Year, Another SARS-like Epidemic Is Brewing in China
Scores of people in Wuhan and Hong Kong have been sent to hospitals because of a mystery respiratory ailment—and true to form, China is trying to keep it quiet.
Europe’s Green Deal Could Open a New Front in the Trade War
Economic tensions with China may be soothed, but in 2020, Trump will have other trade concerns to worry about.
There Is Nothing Left for Americans to Do in Iraq
Qassem Suleimani and Tehran have won the battle for Baghdad. U.S. policymakers should understand that—and leave.
Trump’s Iran Policy Is Brain-Dead
Lacking coherent objectives and a strategy for achieving them, moves like the assassination of Qassem Suleimani are foreign policy as theater—and could leave the United States worse off.
The World Didn’t Change Much in 2019. That’s Bad News for 2020.
Several important events occurred this year, but few did anything to significantly alter global trends.
Don’t Hold Your Breath for Democratic Change in the Middle East
The region is accustomed to cycles of protest and political upheaval, so it’s better not to bank on successful revolutions.
Governments Can Kill Protesters—but Not Protest
The people want more democracy, even if their leaders want less.
How Hypocrisy Became Standard Operating Procedure for the U.S. Government
The “Afghanistan Papers” point to an information cartel that will likely persist for the foreseeable future.
Everyone Knows America Lost Afghanistan Long Ago
Inflated threats, concealed costs, and lack of accountability for failure—and the complicity of the foreign-policy establishment—have kept the infinity war going for 18 years.
Pompeo’s Departure Is Restoring the State Department’s Swagger
The U.S. secretary of state appears to have one foot out the door—and that’s exactly what U.S. diplomats have been waiting for.
10 Things in the World to Be Thankful for in 2019
Be grateful for Greta Thunberg, Emmanuel Macron—and the fact that things aren’t as bad as they could be.
Trump Is Happy to Seem Weak Next to Erdogan
The benefits of their personal relationship are clear for the Turkish president. But the U.S. president has his reasons, too.
The Real Reason to Panic About China’s Plague Outbreak
It’s not the disease that’s worrisome—it’s the Chinese government’s response to it.
Impeachment Is Redeeming the Blob
The U.S. foreign-policy establishment is responsible for countless woes—but the impeachment proceedings prove parts of it are better than others.
Mohammed bin Salman Is Having a Fire Sale of His Political Power
Saudi Arabia’s crown prince will take money from investors in the national oil company—but he’ll be giving up far more than he thinks.
Germany Chooses Economic Nostalgia Over Saving the Planet
Central bankers are recognizing they have the power and responsibility to fight climate change. The Bundesbank would rather not.
How to Tell if You’re in a Good Alliance
Not all allies are made equal. But who’s worth the commitment, and who’s not?
Erdogan Has No Idea What He’s Doing in Syria
The Turkish president’s war will likely fail because he doesn’t know what he wants.
Assad Is Now Syria’s Best-Case Scenario
The ruthless Syrian dictator is guilty of countless war crimes—and regrettably represents his country’s least bad remaining option.
The Fire in Syria Is Shedding Light on the United States
There’s only one positive aspect to the disaster in Syria: It’s forcing an overdue conversation about U.S. grand strategy.
There’s Always a Next Time to Betray the Kurds
The Kurds have no choice but to always trust the United States—and to suffer the inevitable consequences.
Welcome to Trump’s Impeachment Foreign Policy
His administration’s decisions will be erratic, ill-considered, and ineffective. In other words, business as usual.
The United States Is Done Caring About Syria
A major new report about the Syrian war raises the question of whether Washington ever cared about it in the first place.