The Skeptics

Fallujah: ISIS's Latest Failure

For more than two years, the residents of Fallujah have been lorded over by the Islamic State, which took control of the city in January 2014 from an understaffed Iraqi security force.

Twenty-nine months later, the Iraqi government is striking back with the goal of retaking ISIS’s most important stronghold in Anbar province. Here are five things to keep in mind:

1.    Fallujah the latest in a string of Defeats for ISIS.

America's Doomed China Strategy

Two developments in the past month indicate that Washington’s mixed policy of engagement and containment (or “congagement”) toward China has begun to tilt more toward containment. The first development was the visit of Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to India in mid-April and the signing of a bilateral cooperation agreement on military logistics. The other episode is President Obama’s just-completed trip to Vietnam and the announced lifting of the long-standing arms embargo on that country.

Is China Really That Dangerous?

The United States dominates the globe militarily. Washington possesses the most powerful armed forces, accounts for roughly 40 percent of the globe’s military outlays, and is allied with every major industrialized state save China and Russia.

Yet the bipartisan hawks who dominate U.S. foreign policy see threats at every turn. For some, the People’s Republic of China is replacing the Soviet Union as America’s chief adversary. They view another military buildup as the only answer.

Congress Denies Justice to 9/11 Victims' Families

Last week, the United States Senate did something extraordinary: they passed an incredibly important piece of legislation on a bipartisan basis that would make it far easier for the families of 9/11 victims to seek financial damages against foreign nationals who aided and abetted the worst act of mass murder on American soil in modern times.

Why Hillary Clinton Will Be a Foreign-Policy Nightmare

Imagine it is the morning of January 21st, 2017: President Hillary Clinton enters the Oval Office for her first daily briefing from the CIA. Without having to do much guessing we know that this briefing will be replete with terrible news about all the many fires burning around the world. The first priority, of course, will be the Islamic State (ISIS).

Is Donald Trump Good for the Cause of Foreign-Policy Restraint?

When the Berlin Wall fell, Warsaw Pact dissolved and Soviet Union split apart, U.S. foreign policy became obsolete almost overnight. For a brief moment advocates of a quasi-imperial foreign policy seemed worried.

For instance, NATO advocates were reduced to talking about having the anti-Soviet military compact promote student exchanges and battle drug smuggling. But advocates of preserving every commitment, alliance and deployment quickly recovered their confidence, insisting that the status quo now was more important than ever.

Forgetting Phase IV All Over Again in Iraq

The strategy that the United States is following to “disrupt, degrade, and ultimately defeat” Daesh is to conduct an air campaign against their strongholds and personnel in Iraq and Syria, and to support whatever ground force is willing to go up against them. It is not the policy of the U.S. to provide that ground force. Instead, the U.S, has worked to put together a coalition of regional parties—Arab countries as well as “moderate” Syrian rebels—to provide an effective ground force, with no success to date.