The Fog of Selling a War

by Paul R. Pillar The “fog of war,” about which Carl von Clausewitz wrote, refers to the confusion and lack of knowledge of what an adversary is up to on a chaotic battlefield. Currently, those promoting or welcoming a war… Continue Reading  

As U.S. Weighs War, Iraqis Prepare a Carnival for Peace

by Laura Gottesdiener There’s a dark joke going around Baghdad these days. Noof Assi, a 30-year-old Iraqi peace activist and humanitarian worker, told it to me by phone. Our conversation takes place in late May just after the Trump administration… Continue Reading  

The Russia Investigation and Cherry-Picking of Intelligence

by Paul R. Pillar The selective release of classified information from U.S. intelligence agencies has long been a favorite way for administrations to make a public case amid doubt or controversy. Raw intelligence lends a cachet of seriousness and authenticity… Continue Reading  

America’s Standard of “Normal Nation” in the Middle East

by Pouya Alimagham On June 2, 2019, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated that the United States would be willing to engage with Iran as long as “the Iranians…behave like a normal nation.” Aside from the condescension of talking to… Continue Reading  

Beware Iran’s Ideological Power

by Ali Rizk As tensions flare up between the Trump administration and Iran, many observers have been quick to point out that Iran is no Iraq and that war with Iran will have far more devastating consequences. Iran, for instance,… Continue Reading