John Feffer

John Feffer is the director of Foreign Policy In Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies. His most recent book is the dystopian novel Frostlands. Previously, he was a writing fellow at Provisions Library in Washington, DC and a PanTech fellow in Korean Studies at Stanford University. He is a former associate editor of World Policy Journal. Feffer has worked as an international affairs representative in Eastern Europe and East Asia for the American Friends Service Committee. He has studied in England and Russia, lived in Poland and Japan, and traveled widely throughout Europe and Asia.

Beyond Latin America’s Lost Decade

December 03, 2021

After the pink tide of progressive politics came a brown tidal wave of reaction. The last few years of governance in Latin America have reeked of corruption, repression, and environmental degradation. They will go down in history as the “Sewage Decade,” thanks to Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil, Ivan Duque of...

Sanctions on North Korea Do Not Work

November 26, 2021

North Korea is one of the most heavily sanctioned countries in the world. It has been subject to US and international sanctions for more than 70 years. Those sanctions have come in three overlapping waves, first as a result of the Korean War, then in response to its development of...

The Vaccine Pushback Is Bad, But Wait for the Climate One

November 19, 2021

I’ve only had to show my vaccination card a couple times — to eat in a restaurant in New York City, to see a play in Washington, DC. I was happy to do so. Once inside, I was relieved to be among the vaccinated. Most Americans have gotten vaccinated because...

Climate Change Is Not Somebody Else’s Problem

November 12, 2021

There is an astonishing statistic in a Pew research study released in 2020 on perceptions of how different countries handled COVID-19. Only 15% of people in a dozen countries around the world thought the United States was doing a good job of addressing the pandemic. That sharply contrasted with how...

America Is a Poor Example of Democracy

November 05, 2021

In 988, Prince Vladimir was undecided about which of the three great monotheistic religions to bring to his Russian realm. He sent envoys to the lands of Judaism, Islam and Christianity. The envoys returned with stories of the three faiths. According to legend, Vladimir rejected Judaism and Islam because of...

Are the Rich Embarrassed by Their Riches?

October 15, 2021

The rich have always flaunted their wealth. It was rarely good enough to enjoy financial success, you had to be conspicuous about it. They build enormous homes for everyone to gawk at. They throw lavish parties. They commission paintings, statues, biographies. They endow institutions so that their names can live...

The Climate Change Transition in the Age of the Billionaire

October 08, 2021

It was supposed to be the greatest transition of modern times. Practically overnight, a dirty, inefficient and unjust system that encompassed 11 time zones was to undergo an extreme makeover. Billions of dollars were available to speed the process. A new crew of transition experts came up with the blueprint...

The UN Faces a Crisis

October 01, 2021

Jair Bolsonaro gave a speech at the UN General Assembly last month. It was full of the usual misstatements and exaggerations for which the Brazilian leader has become notorious. But the most noteworthy part of the speech had nothing to do with its contents. It was Bolsonaro’s refusal to take...

Who Will Stand Up to the US Military?

September 24, 2021

When he was trying to win the Vietnam War, Richard Nixon famously told his chief of staff that he wanted Communist leaders — in the Soviet Union, in North Vietnam — to think that the US president was a mad man, that he was capable of doing pretty much anything...

The Handcuffing of Joe Biden

September 17, 2021

The far right would like to impeach Joe Biden, kick him out of the White House, perhaps even throw him in jail. “Lock him up” has been a predictable chant at Trump rallies going back to before the 2020 election. Even Republicans in Congress have joined this chorus. Bipartisanship? As Donald...

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