October 21, 2012
The attack in Benghazi, which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, was practically the only foreign policy issue to come up in the second presidential debate, and it's sure to come up again in Monday's final debate, which will be entirely devoted to foreign policy.
October 8, 2012, Vol. 18, No. 04
I recently visited Vietnam, primarily because of my interest in its history—and in particular the two Vietnam wars of the 20th century, the first one pitting the Viet Minh against the French and their local allies, the second pitting North Vietnam and the Viet Cong against the United States and South Vietnam. In the process of traveling across the country, from Hanoi in the north, to Hue in the center, and Ho Chi Minh City (née Saigon) in the south, I also learned something of its current achievements and challenges.
September 28, 2012
By Michael R. Gordon and Bernard E. Trainor
(Pantheon, 779 pages, $35)
It is hard now, with the war consigned down the memory hole, to believe that some 1.5 million American military personnel served in and around Iraq from 2003 to 2011. Of that total, according to official statistics, 4,475 made the ultimate sacrifice. Another 32,225 were wounded in action, many seriously. Then, too, there were the diplomats, intelligence operatives, even contractors: All played a vital role in America's costliest conflict since Vietnam.
September 27, 2012
By Michael Doran and Max Boot
WHETHER you agree or disagree with President Obama, there is no doubt that he has formulated a coherent approach to the use of American power. The Obama Doctrine involves getting into a conflict zone and getting out fast without ground wars or extended military occupations. This approach proved its effectiveness in Libya last year.
September 26, 2012
Interviewee: Max Boot, Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Senior Fellow for National Security Studies
Interviewer: Bernard Gwertzman, Consulting Editor
President Obama has withdrawn the last of the so-called 30,000 "surge troops" he sent to Afghanistan in 2009 and 2010, but Max Boot, a veteran military analyst for CFR, says there are "huge uncertainties about the outcome" in the country. He says that "we certainly do not have the sense of victory in sight that we saw in Iraq when the surge troops were pulled out of there." Even though President Obama campaigned in 2008 on a platform of bolstering forces in Afghanistan, "he has done very little to rally public support for the war effort, again because I think he's fundamentally ambivalent about the war himself," Boot says. He also says there are significant questions about long-term U.S. commitment "because neither President Obama nor [Republican presidential nominee] Governor Mitt Romney is eager to talk about Afghanistan."
October 1, 2012, Vol. 18, No. 03
Things are getting ugly in Afghanistan. Taliban insurgents somehow managed to penetrate the coalition’s main base in Helmand Province, Camp Bastion, and blow up six Marine Corps Harrier jump jets and damage two others, making this the greatest single-day loss of American warplanes since the Vietnam war. (The Harrier squadron commander, Lt. Col. Christopher Raible, was killed in the attack.) Another Taliban suicide bomber struck in Kabul, killing a dozen people, including contract workers for the U.S. embassy. Oh, and there have been more “green on blue” killings, bringing to 51 (and counting) the number of coalition troops killed this year by Afghan security personnel.