Mar-Apr 2012

The Realist

The False Neocon View of Reagan

There's a dangerous illusion in the  legend that Reagan changed course in Cold War policy and set the country on a path to expansive overseas adventurism. Beware of false lessons about his stewardship.

Robert W. Merry

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Articles

Nigeria's Battle for Stability

Despite a veneer of democracy, this oil-rich nation has suffered from dysfunctional governance for decades, and tensions between the Christian South and the Muslim North are rising. Nigeria needs creative American diplomacy.

John Campbell

Reviews and Essays

Great Catherine's Many Dimensions

With his usual literary lilt, Robert K. Massie captures Catherine the Great's stirring story. But by focusing on her personal life, he slights her role as absolute monarch obsessed with the enlightenment and power of her adopted Russia.

Even Academics Like Ike Now

Dwight D. Eisenhower was a paradoxical man—warm in groups but frosty in person; not an intellectual but steeped in history; a simple man who dominated giants. Jean Edward Smith's tome offers insight into this self-effacing yet effective man.

Imperial Britain's Afghan Agony

America's effort to shape events in Afghanistan has many historical antecedents. None ended in greater tragedy than Britain's involvement there from 1838–1842. Diana Preston offers a well-researched, well-written account of this sad tale.

Iraq's Federalism Quandary

Iraq faces major questions about the power-sharing agreements between Baghdad and Iraq's various regions. A solution may require granting greater autonomy to the country's Kurds than to other regions.

Sean KaneJoost R. HiltermannRaad Alkadiri

The Better War That Never Was

The "better-war" thesis blames generals for failed wars and misses the crucial role of faulty strategies. William Westmoreland's Vietnam ordeal offers a case in point. He deserves better than this latest assault by Lewis Sorley.

Beinart's Quest to Save Zionism

How can an Israeli PM mobilize U.S. politicians against a U.S. president committed to Israeli interests? Beinart's provocative answer: U.S. Jewish leaders commandeered Jewish organizations and turned them into agencies for Likud interests.

Nigeria's Battle for Stability

Despite a veneer of democracy, this oil-rich nation has suffered from dysfunctional governance for decades, and tensions between the Christian South and the Muslim North are rising. Nigeria needs creative American diplomacy.

John Campbell

West's Afghan Hopes Collide with Reality

The outcome in Afghanistan won't resemble the vision of America and its allies, who wanted a strong, Western-aligned central government keeping the Taliban at bay. The goals should now be less ambitious.

Michael Hart