The Dangers of (Insert your country’s name) First policies

They go by different names: Britain First, Party for Freedom, America First.  They range from right-wing nationalists to left-wing communists.  And as far as it is possible to nail down proper policy from him, America's leading Republican candidate, Donald Trump, seems to be one of them. Years ago I wrote a two part series positing … Continue reading The Dangers of (Insert your country’s name) First policies

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NATO could destroy the Islamic State. So why don’t they?

NATO is the most powerful military alliance in human history: it combines 3 of the world's 7 nuclear-armed powers and tops it off with the conventional power of the world's lone superpower.  It has potentially formidable military powers within it: Germany, Italy, France, and Britain could all well rearm to much success should they so … Continue reading NATO could destroy the Islamic State. So why don’t they?

Mission Accomplished for Putin in Syria? Well, yes and no.

Six months ago, Putin stunned just about everyone by sending Russian forces off to a distant war in the Middle East.  Folly, cried many, including myself, for the Middle East is an ugly morass of conflict that siphons power and undermines great states. Now, Putin is pulling most of his forces out.  Once more, just … Continue reading Mission Accomplished for Putin in Syria? Well, yes and no.

Why the Free Syrian Army Never Went Anywhere

As the Syrian civil war embarks upon an odd cease fire - one replete with exceptions and violations - it's worth looking back at some of the failures that led up to this point.  There are plenty to choose from, and that long sad path is better detailed elsewhere.  Instead, we'll focus on just one: … Continue reading Why the Free Syrian Army Never Went Anywhere

Iran is becoming a better place (but don’t take that for granted)

While America's upcoming election fills many with worry, the Islamic Republic of Iran has a quiet yet meaningful election all its own.  The results shoved aside the hardliners who have for so long dominated Iran's many branches of the Islamic Republic, stuffing the all-important Assembly of Experts with relatively moderate forces poised to elect a … Continue reading Iran is becoming a better place (but don’t take that for granted)