China Wants Vanuatu–Australia Had Better Stop Them

“The Australians have not done a sufficient job of paying attention to their near-abroad and it may soon cost them dearly–and the United States. One thing is certain, however, China is intent on expanding its reach throughout the world–and they won’t tread lightly any longer. We’d better get ready.”

What Happens in a Massive Coalition Airstrike On Assad’s Forces in Syria?

“American war planners in the Trump Administration must, therefore, opt to hit Assad’s air force, but to leave him enough capabilities that he has a reasonable chance at stemming the jihadist surge that will inevitably come from the American air campaign. Trump must also use the 2,200 American troops in Syria as a bargaining chip to get Russia and Turkey to pull both Iran and Assad himself back from the hostilities, and help to create a negotiated settlement that not only ended the conflict, but helped to establish a more stable political environment in Syria.”

President Trump is Right to Strike Again at Assad

“No, it is not in America’s interest to simply ignore Assad’s repeated chemical weapons use, or to empower his regime — at the expense of our regional allies. That would actually force America to expand its role in the Mideast at precisely the time it needs to reduce its physical presence there. Thus, a retaliatory — proportional — strike against Assad for his chemical weapons attack would be a justified use of American force (and would actually solidify America’s position in the region, without expanding our role there).”

Bomb Assad but Bring the Boys Home

“The president should strike back against Bashar al-Assad for having committed this brazen act of genocide. But, he should also go to Putin and Erdogan—cutting out the Iranians completely—and offer to reduce American presence in Syria in exchange for them forcing Assad (and Iran) to end the civil war peacefully.”

Warfare State Blues: No Syria Escalation (Yet)

“Thomas Aquinas once said, ‘if the highest aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would leave it in port forever.’ This more than anything seems to represent the dominant mindset among America’s foreign policy elite. While Aquinas was a wise and quotable man, I find the concept of viewing American foreign policy as a ship with limits meant to be tested–even if it destroys the ship–to be very frightening (and irresponsible). Rather than captaining a ship in dangerous waters, I prefer to look at foreign policy as a medical doctor looks at healing a patient. The first duty of a medical doctor is to uphold the Hippocratic oath. That oath, which all doctors are required to swear fealty to, simply states, ‘First, do no harm.’ American foreign policy practitioners need to live by the Hippocratic oath as well. Imagine what the world would look like toady if the emergency men who populated the George W. Bush Administration lived according to the Hippocratic oath.”

The New-Old World Order is Here (Part VII)

“Until we achieve that kind of innovation and prosperity, then, the United States will continue to be mired in history and hegemony and unipolarity will be a thing of the past. Thus, we will be forced to operate in a balance-of-power paradigm in which the Chinese are very near-to-parity with the United States and the Russians continue nipping at our proverbial heels (despite Russia being a country in severe decline). We will live in a world in which geopolitical risk to the United States is at an all-time high, since we are unable to overcome the major threats posed by rogue states and terrorists also. However, it will take some time to generate the kind of economic boom that is needed. And, it’s not an entirely bad thing to reassess some of our preconceived notions and support for institutions that bear little relevance to this new-old world order of hard geopolitics, strict national interests, and competing spheres of influence around the world.”

The New-Old World Order is Here (Part VI)

“Obama campaigned against Mr. Bush’s unilateralism. George W. Bush opposed nation-building. Bill Clinton was averse to George H.W. Bush’s purported “coldness” in foreign policy. The elder Bush, for his part, was a much better tactician than he was a strategist (George H.W. Bush famously quipped that he lacked an understanding of that whole “vision thing”). As you can see, American foreign policy has not only unmoored America from its hard-won dominant position atop the international system, but U.S. foreign policy itself has become unglued by America’s political leaders over the last 30 years.”

Countering Chinese Military Dominance in Space

“Everything in China is being integrated into the overall Chinese state system. And, so, when it comes to space exploration they are very open about the fact that this is not just for scientific gain. There is no divide in China between a civilian space program and a military one, as exists in the United States. There is a full, integrated effort to dominate space, militarily for the satellite purposes in the near-term. But, in the long-term, the Chinese have every intention of going to space for economic reasons.”

China’s Exhortation to Study (and Conquer)

“Don’t listen to the skeptics: China has historically been a major world power. The last 200 years have been an aberration in the 5,000-year-long history of China, not the norm. It’s just that the way in which China rises to become a great power again will look very different from previous iterations in the past. The United States must prepare itself for a complex, dangerous, and highly toxic global competition with China. It must start with protecting its advanced technology and intellectual property.”