Tag: Foreign Affairs

How China Is Outmaneuvering Trump on Trade

As Chinese President Xi Jinping concludes his first foreign trip of 2019, he can congratulate himself on at least one thing: masterfully making use of the daylight between Brussels and Washington when it comes to China policy. While the Trump administration pursues its ongoing trade war, it has failed to convince European countries to banish […]

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The Christianization of U.S. Foreign Policy

Last Thursday, Donald Trump announced, via Twitter, a radical shift in foreign policy, saying it was time to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the occupied territory of Golan Heights, seized from Syria in 1981. As international headlines quickly pointed out, the tweet contradicted both international law and a UN resolution; seemed a transparent gift to embattled […]

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The Real-Life Implications of Trump’s Golan Heights Tweet

With a few strokes on his keyboard on Thursday, President Trump undermined one of the fundamental norms of international law. “After 52 years,” he tweeted, “it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and […]

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Trump’s Golan Heights Tweet Is a Gift to the Far Right

With a few strokes on his keyboard on Thursday, President Trump undermined one of the fundamental norms of international law. “After 52 years,” he tweeted, “it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and […]

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The Beginning of a Questionable Friendship

During his visit to the United States Monday and Tuesday, Jair Bolsonaro, the right-wing extremist sworn in as Brazil’s president in January, appeared visibly giddy at the prospect of meeting Donald Trump, gamely playing the amiable ally. While Bolsonaro represents a distinctly Brazilian and deeply militaristic strain of authoritarianism, he has expressed admiration for Trump’s […]

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Bolsonaro Is Betting His Presidency on Trump

During his visit to the United States Monday and Tuesday, Jair Bolsonaro, the right-wing extremist sworn in as Brazil’s president in January, appeared visibly giddy at the prospect of meeting Donald Trump, gamely playing the amiable ally. While Bolsonaro represents a distinctly Brazilian and deeply militaristic strain of authoritarianism, he has expressed admiration for Trump’s […]

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The Problem With Trying to Be Like China

For decades, the Republican economic creed has revolved around low taxes and free markets. The sacred dual directives had to be vigorously defended and market regulations of any kind aggressively parried. Free-market prophets such as Milton Friedman suggested a society’s “belief in freedom itself” might be measured by its commitment to deregulation. But quietly, in […]

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The Longer History of the Christchurch Attacks

On Friday, an Australian white supremacist committed a monstrous act of violence against Muslim worshippers in New Zealand. The attack, which he livestreamed, was steeped in the kind of global iconography and discourse that characterizes modern white supremacy. The assailant played a song about convicted Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic as he approached the Al […]

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White Nationalism Is an International Threat

On Friday, a gunman stormed a pair of mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, showering worshippers with gunfire, and livestreaming the country’s deadliest mass killing since 1943. “I was able to hear the big sound of the shooting,” one survivor, Mohan Ibrahim, told the Canadian broadcaster CBC. Ibrahim fled through back entrance, people dropping around him. […]

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The Amnesia of the U.S. Foreign Policy Establishment

“Donald Trump is undermining the rules-based international order.” The Economist’s headline last summer summarized a common refrain within America’s foreign policy establishment. Trump “wants to undo the liberal international order the United States built,” Thomas Wright of the Brookings Institution warned on Inauguration Day in 2017. Trump could “bring to an end the United States’ […]

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The Dying Howls of British Politics

In the movies, shapeshifters such as werewolves, witches, and demons show their true form when fatally wounded. This week Brexit, 33 months since conception and only a fortnight before its due date, showed what it has always truly been: politicians haranguing each other over esoteric laws, in the name of unbridgeable differences. The sheen of […]

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The Netherlands’ Burgeoning Free Speech Problem

In 2014, Geert Wilders, leader of the Dutch far-right populist Party for Freedom (PVV), asked a roomful of supporters a very on-brand question: “Although actually I’m not allowed to say this … Do you want, in this city and in the Netherlands, more or fewer Moroccans?!” “Fewer!” the crowd enthusiastically chanted. “Well, we’ll take care […]

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Can American Foreign Policy Be Greened?

In the 1977 novel Edith’s Diary, by the great crime writer Patricia Highsmith, Edith is the mother of a dipsomaniacal good-for-nothing who records in her diary not the truth about her son but, instead, the compensatory fantasy that he is a grad student in engineering, the husband of a charming wife, and father to a pair […]

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The Coalition of Despots for Regime Change in Venezuela

In the early 1970s, a handful of Sandinistas were in the mountains of Nicaragua fighting to overthrow the 40-year U.S.-backed, brutal dictatorship of the Somoza family. When a powerful volcanic eruption struck Nicaragua in 1971, Sandinista Omar Cabezas later recounted, they told the peasants whom they encountered that God was punishing them for not getting […]

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The Reality Behind Trump’s Coalition for Regime Change in Venezuela

In the early 1970s, a handful of Sandinistas were in the mountains of Nicaragua fighting to overthrow the 40-year U.S.-backed, brutal dictatorship of the Somoza family. When a powerful volcanic eruption struck Nicaragua in 1971, Sandinista Omar Cabezas later recounted, they told the peasants whom they encountered that God was punishing them for not getting […]

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Why France Is Losing the War on Anti-Semitism

In the first weeks of 2019, French authorities discovered 96 tombs desecrated in a Jewish cemetery in eastern France, the word “juden” scrawled across a bagel shop in Paris, and swastikas marring a street portrait of former government official and Auschwitz survivor, Simone Veil. On February 16 in Paris, a group of protestors in the […]

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How Regime Change Breeds Demagogues

In 1989, citizens rose up and tore down the Berlin Wall. As the people toppled statues of Communist leaders in cities across Eastern Europe and rallied in their central squares, world leaders declared a victory for freedom. Meanwhile, economists from Harvard and experts at the International Monetary Fund intervened with a suite of privatization and […]

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A Small Party Started Brexit. Is a Small Party the Antidote?

In 1988, Austrian philosopher Karl Popper argued in The Economist that the two-party system is the most democratic: Proportional representation, which encourages minority and coalition governments, gives undue power to small parties, who can threaten to leave and destroy a ruling coalition if their platforms aren’t prioritized. Nearly three decades later, the greatest political event […]

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The Shameful Campaign to Silence Ilhan Omar

History has been curling back lately in the most uncomfortable ways. Nearly 125 years ago, a French military court convicted the artillery captain Alfred Dreyfus of treason for handing military secrets to the Germans. Dreyfus, who was Jewish, would eventually be exonerated, but not before his case was turned into a national referendum on the […]

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