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Fertile Crescent

Wasting the Golden Hour in America's Iraq Meltdown

A firsthand account of the U.S. failure to seize the initiative in the early days of the Iraq occupation.

Lessons of the Syrian Reactor

The intelligence failures of Iraq seriously constrained policy makers in other areas.

Dreams of Babylon

Iraq is not yesterday’s war. If Obama withdraws too quickly, the tenuous peace will collapse.

Spoils of Babylon

Kirkuk is about to bring Iraq back into civil war. The Obama administration is moving toward a settlement of this disputed region that will anger everyone.

The Federalists Go to Brussels

The European Union’s potential for superpower status has been greatly exaggerated. Brussels has neither the stomach for the job, nor the united purpose to undertake it.

Empire Falls

The United States is in unprecedented decline. Future generations will look back at the past decade as the beginning of the end of American hegemony.


Syria Deal: As Good As It Gets?

A strong line will be vital in negotiations, for Damascus is sure to dawdle.

Israel, Syria and American Moral Hazard

Why do Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and others clamor for an intervention they could carry out themselves?

Bombing Can Wait

Washington will have more leverage in a negotiation than it would after an attack.


Anne-Marie Slaughter Conquers Uncertainty

Did Syria use chemical weapons in December? State Department officials aren't sure. But Anne-Marie Slaughter is.

The Tragic Right Turn

Golda Meir jokingly lamented Moses's left turn during the Exodus. The real tragedy is modern Israel's ideological shift to the right.

The Arab League's Business

The Arab League--albeit a ridiculously lame substitute on the Palestinian side for U.S. support for Israel--is a reminder of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict's importance across the Middle East.

Books & Reviews

Revisionism on the West Bank

For many, Israel’s founding is shrouded in mysticism. But there is a battle raging among the historians of the Holy Land. The current stalemate is a story of bad actions on both sides. Beware those who rewrite narratives.

Eating Vichyssoise in Athens

Beyond the latest rows, institutional paralysis and financial incompetence, the scars of war have plainly not all been healed. Is there a deeper collapse of European self-confidence?

Heirs of Sargon

Iraq has a long and tortured history. Home to the tyrant, the origins of despotism lie in the primordial ooze of the Mesopotamian swamp. Yet for a brief moment fifty years ago, the land of two rivers experienced democracy.

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April 18, 2014