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  • Commentary posted September 30, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. China enjoys all the benefits of Obama’s engaging folly

    Last week’s U.S.-China summit offers an object lesson in how President Obama conducts foreign policy. All the rhetoric, assumptions and diplomatic tics of the Obama Doctrine are there. And the outcomes, as usual, are not good. For example, no matter how provocative China is, it must be, according to Mr. Obama, “engaged.” It may launch a devastating cyberattack against…

  • Commentary posted September 28, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Obama’s ‘the worse, the better’ strategy

    What a mess. President Obama says he wants to take in at least 10,000 refugees from the Middle East. Meanwhile Russia’s Vladimir Putin is sending fighter aircraft and troops to prop up a Syrian leader that Mr. Obama has said over and over again must go. The 50 or so Syrian rebels that we spent roughly $1 million apiece to train and equip have disappeared. Hundreds of…

  • Commentary posted September 16, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Want to fix China’s (and our) Economy? Think globally

    Something’s amiss with the world’s economy. And it goes way beyond stock-market woes in China and elsewhere. Economists point to debt and low economic growth as the culprits, but this explanation only touches the surface. To turn around the world’s economy, we’ll need to understand the deeper problems. A study just published by the Heritage Foundation provides some…

  • Commentary posted August 19, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. What happens if Congress says no to the Iran deal?

    You’ve heard the argument. If Congress turns down the Iran nuclear deal, Tehran will rush to get a nuclear bomb within two to three months. Our only alternative then is war. But what about Congress voting “no” and re-adjusting the terms of the agreement? Robert Satloff, the executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, recently made such a…

  • Commentary posted August 10, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Why the Iran ideal increases the risk of war

    Let's cut to the chase: Does the Iran deal make war more or less likely? "No deal means a greater chance of more war in the Middle East," President Obama says. His critics disagree. They think it will make war more likely. So which is it? Let's break it down. First, the Iran agreement does not stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. It may slow it down, but in 15…

  • Commentary posted July 14, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Obama’s surrealistic foreign policy

    Foreign affairs took a surrealistic turn last week. The Joint Chiefs of Staff released a report admitting that nation states like Russia and China pose a greater threat than previously thought. Yet, almost concurrently, the Pentagon announced it will cut the Army by 40,000 soldiers. At this rate the Army will soon be the smallest it has been since 1940 — not what you’d…

  • Commentary posted June 30, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. The Supreme Court: Speaking power to truth

    Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s lament last week that “words no longer have meaning” got me to thinking. I don’t claim to know Chief Justice John Roberts‘ motivations in deciding in favor of Obamacare, but I do know that his deconstruction of the meaning of language is increasingly commonplace in our culture. Could his willingness to bend the meaning of the word…

  • Commentary posted June 17, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. The U.N. at 70, time to turn over a new budgetary leaf

    This year the United Nations celebrates its 70th birthday. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon believes it’s a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” to reflect on the organization’s history. He’s right, but we should also think about its future. And one of the things we should be rethinking, as Americans, is how much we pay for the United Nations. The U.S. is the largest…

  • Commentary posted June 12, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Fixing the U.N.

    Seventy years ago, the five victors of World War II and 46 other signatory nations ratified the United Nations Charter, thus making the U.N. an official international body. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon is using the anniversary to celebrate its accomplishments. He says, "The year 2015 is a once-in-a generation opportunity." It is indeed. The year is a chance not only to…

  • Commentary posted June 3, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. China prepping for regional hegemony

    What is China up to? It’s been building artificial islands in the South China Sea. Recently, two motorized artillery pieces were spotted on one of these artificial islands. Experts believe the Chinese may plan to use them as airstrips. On May 20 the Chinese navy challenged a U.S. surveillance aircraft flying near one of the islands. It demanded that the U.S. plane…

  • Commentary posted April 15, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Iran nuclear agreement a rerun of North Korea

    A U.S. president reaches a nuclear agreement with a rogue state. He steps before the microphones and declares, “This is a good deal for the United States.” The pariah nation will, he continues, “freeze and then dismantle its nuclear program” and the “entire world will be safer as we slow the spread of nuclear weapons.” It was President Bill Clinton speaking about the…

  • Commentary posted March 18, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Russia’s endgame and Obama’s end run in the Iran nuclear talks

    The Obama administration assumes that it needs Russia to get an Iranian nuclear deal. But behind-the-scenes happenings suggest that Russia has its own plans. That may explain why the administration is willing to bypass Congress to get a pact with Tehran. Russia and Iran have been moving closer in recent months. On Jan. 20, they signed a military cooperation agreement…

  • Commentary posted March 4, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Military index shows U.S. weakness

    Every year Congress debates how much to spend on defense. And yet there is no reliable benchmark to measure how much spending is enough. We get piecemeal information in testimony from the military chiefs and reports on specific weapons. And every four years the Pentagon puts out strategic and defense reviews. [And even those reports have largely been ignored in recent…

  • Commentary posted February 18, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Why arming the Ukrainians is necessary

    Yet another cease-fire agreement on Ukraine has been signed in Minsk. It went into effect Sunday amid low expectations of success. This is the second such agreement to come out of Minsk. The previous deal was signed in September. It collapsed almost immediately. There is precious little confidence that Minsk II will pan out any better. The best that German Chancellor…

  • Commentary posted February 5, 2015 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Economic freedom is proven secret of success

    Suppose someone told you there were over two decades of economic data showing the secret of success for every nation in the world and that a Nobel laureate in economics inspired the methodology that was used to analyze that data. Would you sit up and listen? I hope so, because if you did, you would discover a lot about why some economies succeed while others…