The NATO Summit: Important Issues Beyond the Antics

Mike Pompeo, Donald Trump, and John Bolton at the NATO ministerial (State Department via Flickr)

by Paul R. Pillar Most press coverage of the NATO summit meeting was about Donald Trump’s political theater, for which NATO itself was merely a backdrop. Journalists who said that their heads were spinning after hearing Trump’s everything-is-fine press conference… Continue Reading  

The Palestinians and Nuclear Weapons

Warhead for the Titan II ICBM (Wikimedia Commons)

by Paul R. Pillar The significance of the unresolved Israeli-Palestinian conflict has long been the subject of tendentious argumentation. The right-wing government of Israel, not wanting to relinquish the conquered land whose relinquishment would be necessary for peace, often contends,… Continue Reading  

Doctrine and Trump’s Foreign Policy

Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen

by Paul R. Pillar The urge within the commentariat to describe every president’s foreign policy in terms of some clearly defined doctrine is as strong as ever, but Donald Trump presents would-be doctrine-definers with perhaps their toughest challenge yet. This… Continue Reading  

Nuclear Diplomacy with North Korea and Iran: Let the Comparisons Begin

North Korea's titular head of state Kim Yong Nam and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

by Paul R. Pillar North Korea and Iran represent significantly different nuclear-related challenges. The biggest difference is that North Korea has nuclear weapons while Iran doesn’t and never has. If North Korea really were to become no longer a nuclear… Continue Reading  

Land Grabs and the Rules-Based Order

Angela Merkel, Donald Trump, and other world leaders at the G-7 Meeting (Jesco Denzel)

by Paul R. Pillar The main takeaway from the recent G-7 summit obviously is the striking damage to U.S.-allied relations from Donald Trump’s posturing and accusations about trade. Also worth assessing, however, is a different and milder disagreement between the… Continue Reading