U.S. Masochism: Trying to Stay in Iraq and Afghanistan
Saudi Oil and the Yemeni Succession
As detailed in a U.S. State Department cable, which sources a British diplomat based in Yemen, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia seeks to build, own and operate a pipeline that bypasses the straits of Hormuz—and hence, the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The West’s Rube Goldberg Schemes in the Balkans Come Apart
Tensions and violence are again on the rise in the Balkans. The latest incident, which Morton Abramowitz and James Hooper document in depressing detail, was a dust-up between government forces and angry Serbs in northern Kosovo.
Taiwan and Other Security Clients Are Not Valuable Allies
The ongoing controversy surrounding Taiwan’s request to purchase sophisticated weapons systems from the United States, including 66 advanced F-16 jet fighters, continues to roil.
Defense Cuts Still on the Table, Not in the Bank
Policy Elites Ignore Public Opinion on Foreign Policy
It’s a bit striking how different public opinion and elite opinion are regarding U.S. foreign policy. One useful juxtaposition I’ve found is using National Journal’s “national security insiders” polls and contrasting them with polls of the public. Two recent examples:
The Convoluted Debate on Drones
The same week U.S. Defense Secretary Leon E.
Leave Iraq to the Iraqis
Many advocates of promiscuous military intervention angrily reject the claim that America is an “empire.” Granted, the U.S. doesn’t directly rule its imperial dependents. But Washington policymakers do insist on maintaining a military presence wherever and whenever possible, irrespective of America’s defense needs.
Rep. Forbes: Right Questions, Wrong Answers
Necessary reductions in military spending are finally coming...probably. It’s not surprising, then, that those who want to prevent these cuts are louder than ever. Yesterday’s hearing of the House Armed Services Committee’s Readiness Subcommittee, headed by Chairman Randy Forbes (R-VA), was a prime example. Forbes, with a group of military vice chiefs as his chorus, declared that efforts to cut the defense budget would result in the “slow dismantlement of the greatest military in the world.”