Did NATO betray Russia, breaking the deal to stay out of Eastern Europe?

Summary:  The news that "NATO invites Montenegro to join alliance, defying Russia" has sparked return (again) of stories that the US broke its deal with the Soviet Union to stay out of Eastern Europe. These accusations by Putin and other Russian leaders frame and poison relations with the West. Here are the facts. Putin's claims … Continue reading Did NATO betray Russia, breaking the deal to stay out of Eastern Europe?

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Can we answer SecDef Gates’ question about NATO and the Af-Pak War?

Robert Gates -- Secretary of Defense in the New Obama Administration (also the SecDef in the old Bush Administration; change you should not have believed in) -- has asked a question.  It's an opportunity for participatory democracy!  Can we help him out by answering the question. Gates asked this question during an interview with Katie Couric … Continue reading Can we answer SecDef Gates’ question about NATO and the Af-Pak War?

These days all American Presidents are War Presidents (part 2)

In March I asked "How long will all American Presidents be War Presidents?"  Now we know the answer:  for the next 4 years, perhaps the next 8, we will be at war.  If McCain wins - almost certainly.  If McCain cannot complete his term (quite possible), then Palin -- probably.  Obama -- equally probable. We saw Gov. … Continue reading These days all American Presidents are War Presidents (part 2)

“The Medvedev Doctrine and American Strategy”, by George Friedman

Here is another brilliant strategic analysis by George Friedman of Stratfor, about a major geopolitical issue.  While I disagree with many of his specifics (e.g., the state of the Iraq War, the odds of a master settlement with Iran), the reasoning looks sound to me.  But, as is so often the case in American geopolitical thinking … Continue reading “The Medvedev Doctrine and American Strategy”, by George Friedman

The world has changed, but many Americans retain their dreams of hegemony

Here are excerpts from 3 articles about the changes to the world order following the Georgia-Russia conflict, and America's difficulty in adapting to them. Stratfor asks if the US still has strong levers with which to move Iran? Expert Americans, like Prof. Kenneth Anderson, retain delusions of American hegemony Consequences of America's encouragement of other nations 1.  Stratfor asks if the … Continue reading The world has changed, but many Americans retain their dreams of hegemony

The good news about COIN in Afghanistan is really bad news

Summary:  We apply to Afghanistan the false lessons about COIN learned in Iraq, doubling down our involvement in foreign lands -- projects unrelated to America's needs, spending funds we do not have. We are expanding the "Afghanistan Army" -- our army, bought and paid for.  We are sending more troops.  We are increasing our control … Continue reading The good news about COIN in Afghanistan is really bad news

Comments on the Georgia-Russia fighting: Buchanan is profound, McCain is nuts

Summary:  Patrick Buchanan is one of our few original political writers.  He often says things of great wisdom, and often things which with I totally disagree.  This is one of the former.  Derbyshire's comments also match my views (except the ambiguous last sentence).  McCain's bizarre remarks demonstrate why many regard the prospect of his presidency with … Continue reading Comments on the Georgia-Russia fighting: Buchanan is profound, McCain is nuts