Foreign Policy and the Establishment of Religion

by Paul R. Pillar The opening line of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution bans any law “respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” It is no accident that this prohibition has pride of place… Continue Reading  

Lessons from the Gulf of Tonkin Incident

by Paul R. Pillar Disturbing similarities between the run-up to the Iraq War of 2003 and the Trump administration’s bellicosity toward Iran keep accumulating. They include war-selling rhetoric seemingly derived from the same script. But in some respects, the more… Continue Reading  

What Makes Iran Look Like an Immediate Threat

by Paul R. Pillar The current crisis atmosphere in U.S.-Iranian relations, in which the risk of open warfare appears greater than it has been in years, is solely and unequivocally due to the policies and actions of the Trump administration.… Continue Reading  

Bolton’s War

by Paul R. Pillar National Security Advisor John Bolton, aided by his comrade-in-arms Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, is doing everything possible to instigate a war with Iran. Naked aggression as a means of starting such a war may be… Continue Reading  

Trump’s Demolition of Arms Control

by Paul R. Pillar The damage to U.S. security interests that is likely to linger well beyond the term of Donald Trump includes major setbacks to arms control. Several characteristics of the current administration’s way of operating contribute to this… Continue Reading