Robert Gates, Pro and Con

"I worry that there’s a temptation to overstate the terrorist threat. It is not an existential threat." "Demonizing Islam and demonizing Muslims is self-defeating. It will make the problem worse." These are two of the statements made by former Secretary of Defense and former director of the Central Intelligence Agency Robert Gates at the Naval … Continue reading “Robert Gates, Pro and Con”

Richard Epstein’s Faulty Case for Intervention

My Hoover Institution colleague Richard Epstein recently argued ("Rand Paul’s Fatal Pacifism," Defining Ideas, September 2) for an interventionist foreign policy. Although his attack is on Senator Rand Paul, it is much broader than that. He claims that libertarians are “clueless on the ISIS threat” and that “libertarians often have the illusion of certainty.” I’m … Continue reading “Richard Epstein’s Faulty Case for Intervention”

An Economist’s Case for a Non-Interventionist Foreign Policy

The Naval War College, based in Newport, Rhode Island, runs a special 11-month course for foreign Navy officers. On February 3, the Naval War College held a special morning session at the Hoover Institution, where I am a research fellow. I was invited to speak. The best invites, in my experience, are those for which … Continue reading “An Economist’s Case for a Non-Interventionist Foreign Policy”

What Is War Good For?

David Henderson appeared on John Stossel’s show on the Fox Business channel January 19, 2012. He debated regular Fox contributor Colonel David Hunt on “war, Ron Paul’s foreign policy views, Israel, 9/11, and Iran.” Watch the clip: Watch the latest video at

The Left’s Antiwar Movement in Monterey: Down but Not Out

There’s no doubt that antiwar activism among the left has declined substantially since Barack Obama became president. That has led many people to claim that the apparent antiwar views of many on the left were not so much antiwar as anti-Bush. I’m sure that there’s something to that, but there’s also a more nuanced explanation. … Continue reading “The Left’s Antiwar Movement in Monterey: Down but Not Out”

Is Leon Panetta a Saint—or a War Criminal?

David R. Henderson’s Introduction: The first part of this article’s title is absurd, right? How could the head of the CIA, a man who sends drones to kill alleged terrorists and ends up killing not only terrorists, but also many innocent people, be a saint? Well, you probably don’t live in the Monterey area. I … Continue reading “Is Leon Panetta a Saint—or a War Criminal?”