Edition:
United States

Peter Van Buren

Commentary: Insider Trump resisters are not heroes

Sep 11 2018

The unnamed insiders who claim to be working clandestinely to resist Donald Trump are not heroes. As a State Department whistleblower who lost his career to tell the truth about the Iraq war, I am burdened by how the interviewees in Bob Woodward’s new book, “Fear,” and the anonymous writer of that New York Times “resistance” Op-Ed are hailed as patriots holding back the U.S. president’s worst impulses through fibs and bureaucratic tricks. Having faced similar choices, I know their approach is neither honorable, nor effective.

COLUMN-Commentary: Insider Trump resisters are not heroes

Sep 11 2018

Sept 11 The unnamed insiders who claim to be working clandestinely to resist Donald Trump are not heroes. As a State Department whistleblower who lost his career to tell the truth about the Iraq war, I am burdened by how the interviewees in Bob Woodward’s new book, “Fear,” and the anonymous writer of that New York Times “resistance” Op-Ed are hailed as patriots holding back the U.S. president’s worst impulses through fibs and bureaucratic tricks. Having faced similar choices, I know their approach is neither honorable, nor effective.

Commentary: Trump’s cost to U.S. credibility

Jul 17 2018

I remember when as an American diplomat I realized my White House was no longer credible. We may be at that same point in the Trump presidency.

Commentary: Whatever happens next, the Trump-Kim summit is a win

Jun 12 2018

In the end, diplomacy can work – as a process, not an event. There is no Big Bang theory of nuclear diplomacy. If no further progress is made toward peace on the Korean peninsula, all this – the back-and-forth, the Moon-Kim meetings, the Singapore summit itself – is at worst another good start that faded. It is more likely, however, a turning point.

Commentary: I just visited Iran. Here’s what I heard about the U.S.

May 21 2018

Iran is a dangerous place these days, at least in a car. Traffic in the cities here moves like Tetris, with drivers pushing their cars into any open space that will fit. Trips begin in chaos and play out in confusion. How it ends is always up to God’s will, everyone says.

Commentary: Trump's political theater on Iran

May 02 2018

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who on Monday presented what he claimed was evidence of a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program, may have added fuel to a looming foreign policy crisis for the United States. On May 12, President Donald Trump is expected to decide to re-impose sanctions on Iran under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. That will significantly increase the chances of war – and may be exactly the outcome Washington seeks.

Commentary: The pros – and cons – of Pompeo as secretary of state

Mar 15 2018

Soon after Secretary of State-designate Mike Pompeo completes his confirmation hearings, he will spend his first day of work confronting the missiles of spring. In one case, President Donald Trump and Pompeo have signaled they want to back away from the Obama-era nuclear deal with Iran; in the other both men seem intent on securing a similar deal with North Korea. It will be Pompeo's counsel to Trump that will help shape the nuclear landscape of America’s foreign policy.

Commentary: What critics of North Korea summit get wrong

Mar 09 2018

Donald Trump has unexpectedly agreed to become the first sitting U.S. president to meet with a leader of North Korea. The reaction has ranged from cautious optimism to warnings about the inexperience of the Trump administration to flat-out criticism. The criticisms are easily dispelled.

Commentary: The tragedy of the U.S. ‘victory’ in Iraq

Jan 29 2018

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over Islamic State on Dec. 9, 2017. And while there will still be some fighting, the real war is over. Yet there were no parades, no statues pulled down, no "Mission Accomplished" moments. An event that might a few years ago have set American front pages atwitter wasn't even worth a presidential tweet.

Commentary: The terrible cost of Trump's Jerusalem decision

Dec 21 2017

Donald Trump's formal recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, reversing some seven decades of American policy, is arguably the most unnecessary decision of his time in office and one that will have consequences lingering far past his tenure. The decision may yield some domestic political advantage among Jewish and evangelical Christian voters for the president, but at irrationally high expense globally.

World News

Spurned by U.S., North Korea's Kim holds talks with Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Thursday at a summit intended to show that the United States is not the only power with enough clout to engage with the reclusive communist state on its nuclear program.