Abandoning Yemen to War Criminals

The United Nations body responsible for monitoring and recording human rights abuses effectively abandoned the people of Yemen last week. In a 21-18 vote with seven abstentions, the U.N. Human Rights Council (UNHRC) refused to extend the mandate of an independent investigation into war crimes committed by all sides in Yemen. Since its establishment in … Continue reading “Abandoning Yemen to War Criminals”

The Bankruptcy of ‘Great Power Competition’

A militarized rivalry between the US and China will be costly and dangerous for all concerned, but the people most likely to suffer from it will be found in the countries that the two major powers choose to turn into their battlefields. The Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union split Europe … Continue reading “The Bankruptcy of ‘Great Power Competition’”

Remembering the Crime of War

The effort to make war more humane has had the regrettable and foreseeable effect of making war more tolerable and therefore much easier to perpetuate. Along the way, the focus on how wars are fought has distracted us from the even more important questions of whether to fight them and for how long. This is … Continue reading “Remembering the Crime of War”

Don’t Forget About Yemen

The war on Yemen has not ended, and unfortunately neither has U.S. backing for the Saudi coalition. As Bruce Riedel and Annelle Sheline explain in their recent analysis for Brookings, Biden has failed to cut off support for Saudi coalition offensive operations as he said he would: "As long as the US materially and rhetorically … Continue reading “Don’t Forget About Yemen”

Shut Down the Drone War

The August 29 U.S. drone strike in Kabul that killed ten civilians, including seven children, demonstrates the bankruptcy of the war on terror. Like many other drone strikes, the strike in Kabul targeted innocent people and achieved nothing except to blow up civilians that had the misfortune to be in the vicinity. According to two … Continue reading “Shut Down the Drone War”

How the US Lost in Afghanistan

The U.S. fought the war in Afghanistan for almost twenty years, but for that entire time the political and military leaders never knew what they were doing and had no clear idea of what they were trying to achieve. To make matters worse, the US government knew almost nothing about Afghanistan and its politics at … Continue reading “How the US Lost in Afghanistan”

Don’t Wage Economic War on Afghanistan

Now that U.S. forces have finally exited Afghanistan, some American hawks are already agitating for the government to stoke internal conflict by backing a new insurgency and wage economic warfare on the country. Last week, Sen. Lindsey Graham and Rep. Mike Waltz publicly called for US recognition of anti-Taliban forces in the Panjshir Valley as … Continue reading “Don’t Wage Economic War on Afghanistan”

An Unsustainable and Unwinnable War Finally Ends

The U.S. ended its almost 20-year war in Afghanistan in defeat last week. The speed with which the client government in Kabul disintegrated confirmed that the US military presence in the country was merely delaying the inevitable collapse of a rickety state that the US had propped up at enormous expense and a high cost … Continue reading “An Unsustainable and Unwinnable War Finally Ends”

Recognizing and Combating the Pernicious Effects of Propaganda

The U.S. is extraordinarily secure from physical threats, and the threat of international terrorism is small and manageable, but the government has nonetheless waged a "war on terror" for the last 20 years in which it assumed extensive new powers that encroached on Americans’ constitutional rights, wreaked havoc in numerous countries, and left hundreds of … Continue reading “Recognizing and Combating the Pernicious Effects of Propaganda”

Time Is Running Out on North Korea Diplomacy

The window for resuming productive negotiations with North Korea will be closing soon. The Biden administration has not treated diplomacy with North Korea as a priority in its first six months in office, and it has shown no sign of pursuing a more creative and moderate policy focused on arms control rather than disarmament. Despite … Continue reading “Time Is Running Out on North Korea Diplomacy”