The Magical, Mystery Tour of the Middle East

February 19, 2018

One of the many unique advantages America still has — if it chooses to exercise it — is its remarkable convening power. Reflecting on his predecessors’ Middle East efforts dating back to Henry Kissinger in the 1970s, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s recent tour of Middle East...

The Tale of an Incompetent President and His Secretary

October 09, 2017

If the reports are true, Rex Tillerson was correct to call Donald Trump a moron. But that doesn't get him off the hook. It is reassuring to hear that President Donald Trump’s obdurate behavior has stupefied his own cabinet members and not just the American people. On October 4, NBC News...

What are We Doing to Protect the Rohingya?

September 21, 2017

If only Muslims reach out to help the Rohingya, the international community will suffer another blow to its reputation. They were Muslims, and they were leaving the country in droves. Their homeland, a remote corner of a multiethnic country, had become a warzone. Militants had taken up arms to...

The Racism Heard Round the World

August 31, 2017

When the neo-fascist National Front is more progressive than the president of the United States, then, yes, Washington, we have a problem. On race relations, the United States has slipped into the same category as Burundi and Iraq. After the violence in Charlottesville earlier this month — and...

Jordan’s Mediation in the Trump-Putin Ceasefire Deal

July 13, 2017

To some, the significance of the Trump-Putin meeting is a harbinger of things to come.  The July 7 meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin in Hamburg, on the sidelines of the G20 summit, will be remembered not so much because the meeting of two most important world leaders finally...

Can Trump Actually Cut (Good) Deals on Diplomacy?

July 13, 2017

From North Korea to Russia to the Middle East, there's no shortage of deal-making needed. But beware the fine print of anything with Trump's insignia. American beef is now available in China — as a result of a deal that Donald Trump made with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. In exchange, Chinese...

Protesting the War in Yemen

May 31, 2017

The US is complicit in policies that could kill as many Yemenis as Jews perished in the Holocaust. We are witnessing a period of activism and civic engagement unprecedented in my generation. Liberals have picked up the placards they put away for most of the Obama era and remembered how to...

America’s Values Should Guide its Foreign Policy

May 23, 2017

Without the compass of values to guide foreign policy, we descend to profit and power and sacrifice principle and people. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson addressed his State Department employees in Washington earlier this month. It was his first significant encounter with his charges since...

Trump’s New Foreign Policy is the Worst of Both Worlds

April 14, 2017

The greenhorn president is heading down a well-worn path: see a problem, fire a missile at it. It didn’t take long for Donald Trump to discover that US foreign policy is about as easy to turn around as a warship in dry dock. Despite any number of promises to shake things up — during the...

Donald Trump and Washington’s Arab Gulf Allies

March 17, 2017

Will Donald Trump’s brand of anti-internationalism prove to be a new status quo or a short-lived aberration? Donald Trump’s presidency has great potential to bring about significant changes in global affairs. Throughout his candidacy, Trump railed against globalism while advocating an...

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