Trump’s New National Security Strategy

National security strategies are strange beasts. Their glittering generalities and kitchen sink approach to detailing threats, interests, and priorities can make it difficult to know how literally, or seriously, to take them. All strategies reflect on the importance of American leadership and bask in the warmth of American values. And thanks to the growing bipartisan […]

Time to Step Back from the War on Terror

President Donald Trump has expanded every aspect of the war on terror he inherited from his two predecessors. In his first nine months Trump has ordered a renewed surge in Afghanistan, increased the tempo of drone strikes, and granted the military greater autonomy. Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, the Taliban now control or contest more districts than at any point since 2001. And […]

Recent Writings

Here are a few of my most recent writings around the web: August 28, 2017, “Terrorism and the New Domino Theory,” @Cato.org August 22, 2017, “The Slim Chances That Trump’s Afghanistan Policy Will Succeed,” @NY Daily News August 21, 2017, “New Strategy, Same Results,” @U.S. News & World Report August 10, 2017, “U.S. Drone Strikes […]

Fatal Fallacies in the War on Terror

As I argue in my recently published policy analysis here at Cato, the American-led war on terror has clearly failed. Unfortunately, rather than accept the obvious fact that the campaign was badly misguided and focusing homeland security efforts in more fruitful areas, the Trump administration appears ready to embrace, and perhaps even to escalate, the American commitment […]

The Failure of American Leadership

Advocates for robust American global leadership are having a bad decade. Donald Trump’s election was clearly a wake-up call to the foreign policy establishment in Washington. In contrast to decades of bipartisan consensus that the United States was the “indispensable nation,” Trump appears to be monumentally indifferent to America’s role in the world. His tense […]

Lessons from the Failed War on Terror

Cato has just published my most recent study, “Step Back: Lessons for U.S. Foreign Policy from the Failed War on Terror.” In the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States launched an international war on terrorism defined by military intervention, nation building, and efforts to reshape the politics of the […]