The Skeptics

U.S. Mid East Policy: Success or Spin?

Really. It’s time for America to stop the self-deception in the Middle East. There is one overriding question that needs answering: does the United States genuinely want to succeed in its fight against the Islamic State (ISIS) or does the preeminent objective remain spinning international events for domestic benefits? If it’s the latter, today’s leading voices will continue thriving. If it’s the former, we’re in real trouble.

Should the U.S. Leave NATO?

Is NATO a military alliance or social club? The “North Atlantic” Treaty Organization just invited Montenegro to join. With 2,080 men under arms, Podgorica is a military nullity. Having peacefully separated from Serbia years ago, Montenegro neither threatens nor is threatened by anyone. Adding it to NATO is like accumulating Facebook Friends. They do little more than allow preening Washington officials to wander the globe gloating how popular the U.S. is.

Is It Time to Expel Turkey from NATO?

Turkey’s rash action in shooting down a Russian plane that apparently violated Turkish airspace for no more than 17 seconds is only the latest incident that should set off alarm bells in other NATO capitals.  Ankara’s reckless belligerence was exceeded only by its hypocrisy.  Turkish planes violated the airspace of Greece more than 2,000 times in 2014 alone, and 2014 was a typical year for such incidents.  Greek officials have long complained that their country mus

Montenegro and the Folly of NATO Expansion

On Wednesday, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) formally invited Montenegro to join the U.S.-led Western military alliance.  Montenegro is consequently on track to become the thirteenth country from the former Eastern bloc to join NATO since the end of the Cold War.  In the midst of ongoing Russo-American tension over Ukraine and Syria, however, further NATO expansion is a huge mistake.

How Ronald Reagan Would Run in 2016

Every Republican wants to be Ronald Reagan reincarnated. At least that’s what the candidates all say. But the fortieth U.S. president probably wouldn’t feel comfortable running in the current field. On foreign policy, at least, the contenders appear to be about as un-Reaganlike as possible.

Got a Plan to Defeat ISIS? Candidates, Show Your Work.

For many years, my former colleague Justin Logan had an editorial cartoon posted on his door in which two scholarly looking men are reviewing a long and convoluted proof scrawled on a blackboard. Amidst the incomprehensible symbols and numbers, somewhere between the beginning and QED, is written, “Then a miracle occurs.”

One turns to the other and says, “I think you should be more specific here in step two.”

Jeb Bush's Big Foreign Policy Speech: Dreams vs. Reality

Last week’s terrorist attack in the heart of Paris has not only rightly refocused the world’s attention on the dangers that the Islamic State represents--it has also upended the presidential politics here in the United States.  If immigration reform and the economy were the top two subjects that dominated the first two nationally televised debates, the November 13 attack in Paris have shifted the deck as to the issues voters care about.