Tag Archives | Iraq

If You Are Not Using the Presidency, Do You Mind If We Borrow It?

President Lincoln once said to an over-cautious general, “If you are not using the army, I should like to borrow it for a short while.” After yesterday’s press conference, I think we might need to say, to our disengaged, apathetic commander-in-chief: if you’re not using the presidency, would you mind if we borrowed it? When […]

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Getting Serious About Syria

Has anyone thought about what we’re going to have to do about the Islamic State—I mean, really thought about it? It has become obvious that the group that calls itself ISIS or just the Islamic State is the most serious terrorist threat to the United States since 9/11, and allowing its formation is the biggest […]

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Iraq Goes on the Obama Diet

President Obama has quite a knack for foreign policy: everything he touches seems to crumble. The administration’s policy in Iraq, for example, was to use the Kurds in northern Iraq to hold back the advance of ISIS, buying time to broker a political solution in Baghdad that would win back the loyalties of alienated Sunnis. […]

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Planning to Fail (Again) in Iraq

One of the consequences of Barack Obama’s presidency will be to discredit the foreign policy of the “humanitarians.” It won’t be because people think it’s bad to feel compassion for the suffering of others. It will be because the loudly declared compassion of the humanitarians is revealed, in practice, as ineffectual posturing adopted as a […]

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The Paradox of the Non-Interventionists

A rigorously non-interventionist foreign policy poses a basic paradox. The worse the rest of the world looks, the more the anti-interventionists can say there are no good options to choose from, and we should just stay home and keep out of trouble. But the worse the world looks, the more intervention is actually necessary to […]

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Why Rand Paul Can’t Be President

Rand Paul is one of the most promising new Republican politicians, with impeccable small-government credentials, a fanatical grassroots following, and the charisma to appeal to mainstream voters and even, potentially, to reach across party lines. So it’s an awful shame that he can’t be president. Senator Paul cannot be president because of his disastrous approach […]

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Wish-Fulfilling Prophecy

Democrats predicted that the war in Iraq was unwinnable, Harry Reid said it was already lost, and Senator Obama declared that President Bush’s “surge” wouldn’t work. And now here we are in 2014, and by golly it looks as if they were right: Iraq is a total disaster. An al-Qaeda splinter group, the Islamic State […]

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The Year of ‘We Told You So’

This is going to be the year of “we told you so.” It is the year in which all the disasters predicted by President Obama’s critics come true. It is the year in which the consequences of the president’s policies, which were staved off just long enough to permit his re-election, come crashing down on […]

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Observations of a Bystander

Writing about foreign policy these days is an exercise in frustration, because the United States is in the unusual and unnecessary position of being a bystander to world events. The reason is that President Obama is deeply committed to a policy of inaction, or more accurately, action so halting and reluctant as to be nearly […]

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Following from in Front

Top Stories of 2012: #4 Story #4 is about America’s current foreign policy, but in this article, my goal is not to recap my previous coverage from this year but to complete it by providing an overview of the big picture. The big picture of our foreign policy is that America is following from in […]

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