It's easy to blame the violence in Iraq and the pitfalls of the war on terror on a small cabal of neocons, a bumbling president, and an overstretched military. But real fault lies with the American people as well. Americans now ask more of their government but sacrifice less than ever before. It's an unrealistic, even deadly, way to fight a global war. And, unfortunately, that's just how the American people want it.
The new U.S. Embassy in Baghdad is the largest the world has ever known. Thousands will live inside its blast walls, isolated from the bloody realities of a nation at war. Why has the United States built this place -- and what does it mean?
She is considered the ultimate team player, a woman of intelligence and poise whose loyalty to President George W. Bush is unwavering. But a closer look reveals that Condi is less intellectual, politically savvier, and far more formidable than people realize.
A series of subtle, if not very sexy, policies could help the United States bring an end to North Korea's communist era.
After the invasion, America was supposed to help Iraq become a model democracy. Instead, the arrogance of L. Paul Bremer and his team of naïve neocons only helped Iraq become the world's most dangerous nation. This is how it all went wrong -- before it ever had a chance to go right.
To regain control of American diplomacy, Condoleezza Rice must keep John Bolton in New York, place a mole in his office, and keep the vice president out of the loop.
Who will be blamed for Iraq? It's easy for politicians to point fingers at each other. But ultimately, the buck stops at the Oval Office.
It has long been fashionable in foreign capitals to criticize the Bush administration for not showing more economic leadership in cutting its budget deficit. But what would happen if the United States got serious about putting its economic house in order? The political bloodletting and instability that would ensue would make the world wish it had kept quiet.
September 11, 2001, was a catalytic event that revealed the core character of the Bush administration's national security team. As rival factions fought for the president's ear, the transformative ideals espoused by the neocons gained ascendancy -- triggering a rift that has split the Republican foreign-policy establishment to its foundations.
Secretary of State Colin Powell has always believed in alliances and quiet diplomacy -- except when it comes to dealing with his colleagues in the Bush administration.
Not since Richard Nixon's conduct of the war in Vietnam has a U.S. president's foreign policy so polarized the country -- and the world. Yet as controversial as George W. Bush's policies have been, they are not as radical a departure from his predecessors as both critics and supporters proclaim. Instead, the real weaknesses of the president's foreign policy lie in its contradictions: Blinded by moral clarity and hamstrung by its enormous military strength, the United States needs to rebalance means with ends if it wants to forge a truly effective grand strategy.
How does the 2004 U.S. presidential campaign appear to a non-American? To find out, FP recently chatted with Chidanand Rajghatta, the Times of India's Washington-based foreign editor. The Bangalore native has covered the United States for several Indian publications during the last decade.
Who outside the administration is to blame for the turmoil in Iraq? The list is long.
The United States invaded a distant country to share the blessings of democracy. But after being welcomed as liberators, U.S. troops encountered a bloody insurrection. Sound familiar? Don't think Iraq -- think the Philippines and Mexico decades ago. U.S. President George W. Bush and his advisors have embarked on a historic mission to change the world. Too bad they ignored the lessons of history.
"How is it in our nation's interest," asked U.S. Sen. Carl Levin recently, "to have civilian contractors, rather than military personnel, performing vital national security functions... in a war zone?" The answer lies in humanity's long history of contracting force and the changing role of today's private security firms. Even as governments debate how to hold them accountable, these hired guns are rapidly becoming indispensable to national militaries, private corporations, and non-governmental groups across the globe.
As U.S. President George W. Bush's first term draws to a close, FP dips into its archive for a look at first terms of the past.
Why John Kerry's foreign policy would emulate George W. Bush's -- and vice versa.
The 2004 U.S. presidential election may be the first in decades to center on the candidates' foreign-policy views. So what do most Americans really think about Iraq, terrorism, North Korea, and free trade? Herewith an "interview" with the American people, with each answer reflecting majority positions in recent opinion polls. Americans' surprising preferences offer insight into what voters want from their next president.
How does U.S. President George W. Bush's preelection spending binge stack up against history?
Excerpts from U.S. President George W. Bush's speech on freedom in Iraq and the Middle East at the 20th anniversary of the National Endowment for Democracy on Nov. 6, 2003.
If you want to understand why the Bush administration invaded Iraq, read Freud's Interpretation of Dreams, not the National Security Strategy of the United States. Only the twisted logic of dreams can explain why the United States thinks that the aggressive pursuit of contradictory goals -- promoting democracy, affirming U.S. hegemony, and ensuring stable energy supplies -- will produce success.