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  • Commentary posted July 22, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. American Diplomacy: Between a "Soft" and a "Hard" Place

    File it under “things you don’t see very often.” A press release from Republican Ed Royce, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, declaring, “I appreciate the efforts of Secretary Kerry….” Accolades from across the aisle have been few and far between for an administration that has suffered an almost endless string of foreign-policy reversals since 2008. Indeed,…

  • Commentary posted July 22, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17: Shooting Down Peace in Ukraine

    Yesterday, hundreds of innocents from all over the world lost their lives in the skies over Ukraine.  This horrible tragedy is a clear reminder of how very far from peace this part of the world remains. Only one capital can end the needless conflict. It's not Washington. It's Moscow. Before the downing of flight MH-17, many in DC had relegated the ongoing struggle in…

  • Issue Brief posted July 22, 2014 by Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Dakota Wood, Luke Coffey After the Malaysian Airlines Atrocity: 10 Ways the U.S. Should Respond to Russia’s Role in Ukraine

    Evidence is mounting that Russian-backed insurgents in eastern Ukraine were responsible for the shooting down of a Malaysian Airlines plane, with the loss of 298 lives. This was an act of barbarism by separatists who are armed, funded, and trained by Moscow. It follows from Russia’s illegal invasion, occupation, and annexation of Crimea and its attempts to dismember…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. 1914 Without a Safety Net

    In “Have We Gone From a Post-War to a Pre-War World?” Mead says we should worry, but not so much. Today’s world is a troubled place. Yet, he notes, the U.S. has advantages unavailable to the great powers a century ago.  And those advantages, he argues, leave the U.S. far better equipped to put the brakes on dust-ups that might otherwise metastasize into global conflicts.…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Immigrants Ignore U.S. Immigration Laws Because Obama Won't Enforce Them

    It became her mantra. The U.S. border with Mexico, Janet Napolitano would say, “has never been more secure.” First uttered in 2010 during Congressional testimony, she repeated it often for the remainder of her tenure as Homeland Security Secretary. Even four years ago, not everyone agreed. True, illegal border crossings had dried up in some sectors. But elsewhere new…

  • Commentary posted July 8, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Cutting Off ISIS Foreign-Fighter Pipelines

    Foreign fighters—outsiders recruited or who volunteer to fight in another country for somebody else’s cause—are nothing new. What’s new is that they have become a staple of the Al Qaeda cohort. It’s called the “pipeline” problem. Ferrying warriors to the war and also returning them home to spread the war elsewhere has become part of the stock and trade of how…

  • Commentary posted July 8, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Obama Gets 'Surprised' by Foreign Crises Because He Isn't Paying Attention

    Flip through the latest National Security Strategy and the Pentagon's Quadrennial Defense Review -- these are the documents describing how President Obama envisions using foreign and defense policy to keep the United States safe, free and prosperous in a world that appears increasingly unfriendly to America's interests. The words “strategic early warning” don’t figure in…

  • Commentary posted July 8, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Don't sign away US sovereignty with bad treaties

    Four weeks after D-Day, having fought fiercely for 28 consecutive days, American troops were still within eyeshot of the Normandy coast. They were already short of artillery rounds, but Gen. Omar Bradley didn’t care. The commander of U.S. ground forces was determined to send the enemy a message. And so, to mark U.S. independence on July 4, 1944, Bradley ordered every…

  • Commentary posted July 8, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Prez Sticks to His Global Mistakes

    Secretary of State John Kerry recently floated a mind-boggling idea: To help turn back ISIS, the Islamic terrorist group that has seized control of more than a third of Iraq, the U.S. could enter a cooperative arrangement with the mullahs of Iran.  Yes, the administration still clings to the notion that it can advance American interests by cutting a deal with Tehran. No…

  • Commentary posted June 30, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Amnesty won't fix the broken immigration system

    Tony Snow was dying. But the White House press secretary, still determined to serve his president, returned to work as long as his cancer was in remission. Many thankless tasks awaited the former Fox News journalist. One of them was brokering meetings with conservative leaders -- asking them to "hear out" George W. Bush's plan for comprehensive immigration reform. One…

  • Commentary posted June 27, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Mission Incomprehensible: Obama's Vision for Military Blunts its Warfighting Skills

    “What's the point of having this superb military that you're always talking about if we can't use it?” – Madeline Albright, 1993, as she argued for sending U.S. troops to Bosnia There's an undertone to Albright's quip, one that suggests a sharp distinction between how progressives and realists view the purpose of the people in the Pentagon. Realists take the…

  • Commentary posted June 15, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Has Obama "Lost" Iraq?

    Forget about speeches—foreign-policy crises define a presidency. Memorable speeches resonate because they are built on acts of real leadership. Conversely, failure washes away the most resounding rhetoric. Which is why the unraveling of Iraq will define Obama's tenure at the top much more than his recent address at West Point. After listening to Obama's speech to the…

  • Commentary posted June 12, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Does Obama understand Iraq may soon be an Islamist state?

    Iraq is a shambles. The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the Al Qaeda off-shoot that now controls nearly a third of the nation, continues to run amok. It’s way past time for the White House to get its head in the game. The disaster unfolding in Iraq and Syria could very quickly spiral into a much, much bigger problem. And some problems are so big that even our…

  • Commentary posted June 8, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Obama owes Americans a responsible explanation of Bowe Bergdahl deal, not empty rhetoric

    He was MIA. His family could only pray they would ever see him again. On Aug. 13, 1944, U.S. Army Pfc. Lawrence S. Gordon disappeared from his unit, Reconnaissance Company, 32nd Armored Regiment, 3rd Armored Division. He vanished during the battle of the Falaise Gap -- a wild, running battle where American troops tried to trap Germany's 7th Army as it retreated from…

  • Commentary posted June 5, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Welcome to Obama's War on Weather

    President Obama’s West Point speech proved telling in ways he probably didn’t plan. The commander-in-chief tried to use the commencement address to quell concerns over a foreign policy that has produced nothing but controversy and setbacks since the debacle in Benghazi. But the president scored more misses than hits with the audience, pundits and the press. Even The…