Review: The Conceit of Humanitarian Intervention

by Paul R. Pillar Humanitarianism is the nicer of the main strains of thinking underlying military intervention inside other states, or the advocacy of such intervention. It offers a rationale that seems quite different from, say, American neoconservatism, in which… Continue Reading  

Obama the Realist

by Paul R. Pillar Jeffrey Goldberg’s long article in the Atlantic about Barack Obama’s thinking on America’s foreign relations, an article derived from a series of interviews that Goldberg had with the president, ought to be required reading for this… Continue Reading  

The Forgotten Benefits of Offshore Balancing

by Paul R. Pillar Discussions of grand strategy often are too abstract and general to be of significant practical use in formulating sound decisions about specific foreign policy problems, but sometimes a concept drawn from such discussion points to an… Continue Reading  

The Geneva Accords and the Return of the “Defensive Realists”

by Ali Fathollah-Nejad After intense negotiations between Iran and world powers (chiefly among them the United States), November 24 saw a historic breakthrough. In a six-month interim agreement, Tehran has committed itself to a substantial freezing of its nuclear program… Continue Reading  

Mitt Romney and Republican Foreign Policy

I haven’t yet had a chance to read political scientist Colin Dueck’s recent history of post-World War II Republican foreign policy, Hard Line, but Ross Douthat summarizes its thesis in a way that makes clear its relevance for the current… Continue Reading