As China's thirst to resolve the Taiwan issue intensifies, the United States' halfhearted commitment to the island will become increasingly perilous: too weak to deter Chinese aggression but strong enough to drag the United States into a war. No U.S. approach to Taiwan will offer a perfect guarantee of peace. But the United States has many options short of the provocative, costly, and diplomatically risky step of an unconditional security pledge.
Sep 24, 2020 Foreign Affairs
The United States has a truly distinct approach to power which has made all the difference in the post-war world. We abandon it at our peril.
Feb 21, 2020 Lowy Institute's Interpreter
Strategic competition between the United States and China has come to dominate U.S. foreign policy debates. That competition is multifaceted, but it may turn on a basic question: Which country has a more sustainable concept of national influence?
Jan 29, 2020 Lowy Institute's Interpreter
America's vast power, and the weakness of most of its enemies, has allowed it to get away with a striking absence of deliberative judgment when deciding on war, as the Iraq case makes clear. But that free pass is coming to an end. It's time for the United States to rethink the way it decides on wars of choice.
Jun 25, 2019 Fox News Channel
The emerging conventional wisdom among foreign policy analysts in Washington is that a new era of great-power competition is upon us. But does that phrase really capture today's reality?
May 29, 2019 Foreign Affairs
The outcome of the Iraq invasion has done little to alter the factors that have led American leaders and the public into unwise military adventures. Today's big idea of America's mission is not so different from what it was in 2003. Any number of events could spark a new moral imperative to act.
Apr 19, 2019 The Wall Street Journal
In an era of global competition in which U.S. military resources are stretched thin, the United States should consider looking for opportunities to scale back potential overcommitment. The current inter-Korean dialogue presents such an opportunity.
Mar 12, 2019 The National Interest
As the world enters an era of greater international competition, U.S. policymakers should take care not to underestimate the importance of the postwar system. The order is far from a myth; it is the United States' most important competitive advantage.
Aug 7, 2018 Foreign Affairs
The postwar, rule-based international order is under unprecedented strain. The U.S. predominance so characteristic of the current order must give way to a more multilateral system, one that takes seriously the sometimes-differing perspectives of other major powers.
Jun 25, 2018 World Economic Forum
No rule-based international order can survive without Chinese support. Reforms are needed to address Beijing's concerns and provide it with a continued stake in the order. The trick is to decide where compromise is acceptable for U.S. interests and to draw clear lines around principles where it is not.
Jun 25, 2018 The National Interest
The growing costs of planning for Korean military contingencies place a burden on U.S. defense resources. If Tuesday's summit becomes a step toward eventual guarantees against aggression, the U.S. could remove a major Korean conflict from the top rungs of its defense planning roster, freeing resources for other worries.
Jun 11, 2018 The Hill
As defense debates heat up this season, most of the noise will be around how to use defense investments. But it’s time to consider the radical notion that the best answer to strategic insolvency isn’t budgetary. It’s not even military. It is geopolitical and diplomatic.
Oct 30, 2017 War on the Rocks
Foreign policy disasters are often the sum of two basic errors: embracing exaggerated claims about the need to act, and inventing a conceptual magic wand to wish away potential consequences. Both are apparent in U.S. policy toward North Korea's nuclear aspirations.
Oct 5, 2017 CNN
Skeptics have suggested that U.S. interests and support for the international community are somehow mutually exclusive. In fact, international institutions, rules, and norms have mostly worked in the U.S. interest, not against it. The Trump administration has an opportunity to build on that record with a strong agenda of reform and support.
Sep 26, 2017 U.S. News & World Report
The United States brokered an agreement to constrain North Korea's nuclear program 25 years ago, but hard-liners abandoned it with vague intentions of coercing the North into something better. They never did, and now a runaway North Korean program poses real danger. This offers a powerful reason to preserve the Iran nuclear deal.
Aug 22, 2017 Fortune
North Korea's missile tests and reported progress in nuclear warhead design have produced a volatile new urgency in U.S. policy. Contain, deter, and transform isn't a radical solution, but it's one that has worked before. This approach could preserve U.S. interests while avoiding war.
Aug 9, 2017 The Hill
Evidence shows that many countries consider themselves part of an emerging global community. This represents America's most potent competitive advantage. U.S. strategy is stronger when it works to reflect and build such a community.
Jun 14, 2017 The Cipher Brief
A pivotal moment could be nearing for China's global role and its relationship with the United States. And America may be able to seize a historic opportunity to test Beijing's willingness to act as the co-sponsor of a stable world order.
Feb 19, 2017 U.S. News & World Report
The international order is in the midst of an epochal shift, and a new administration will have to rethink basic organizing concepts for America's role in the world. The truth about grand strategy today is that the United States badly needs new options.
Oct 5, 2016 War on the Rocks
The United States' approach to Russia — and any other great power — over the coming decade will ultimately be more effective if grounded in the rules, norms, and institutions that have come to characterize the postwar global system.
Jun 23, 2016 The National Interest
America's next leader will confront one of the most profound tasks of any post-war U.S. president: reimagining a threatened international order. Mishandled, the challenge could throw world politics into a tailspin. Done right, it could help keep the peace for another half-century.
Jun 1, 2016 Newsweek
Presence involves global military deployments to counter potential aggressors, reassure allies, underwrite extended deterrence, build partner capacity, and more. It is now as important, in terms of its stabilizing and deterrent effect, as warfighting capabilities. Yet U.S. force posture falls short.
Apr 26, 2016 War on the Rocks
The United States and its allies confront a specific form of statecraft; not new, in all its characteristics, but real and relevant. And most observers who have looked at the problem tend to agree that the U.S. is ill-prepared for such tactics, in part because it simply has not thought of them as a coherent approach worthy of a tailored response.
Jan 14, 2016 War on the Rocks
Recent experience suggests that the targets of gray zone campaigns recognize them for what they are — aggressive efforts to overturn the status quo. Gray zone aggression often prompts exactly the sort of reactions it's meant to avoid.
Dec 22, 2015 War on the Rocks
Escalating competition among major powers is amplifying the role of nuclear weapons in defense policies, including more easily used — and thus especially dangerous — tactical nuclear forces. Before it becomes too late, the U.S. should design and lead a new campaign to control nuclear risk.
Jul 16, 2015 Newsweek
The so-called 'third offset' is intended to guide U.S. defense strategy. The right way to view it is as part of a comprehensive vision for competitive advantage, one in which land power, often minimized in offset analyses, can play a central role.
May 21, 2015 War on the Rocks
Defense Department approaches to risk management could be improved if they focused on complex strategic judgments — questions on which information is imperfect, dozens of variables interact in nonlinear ways, and human choice and agency generate unpredictable patterns.
Apr 22, 2015 War on the Rocks
The way the United States uses risk in national security has too often been ill-defined and misleading. The country needs a more focused and precise understanding of risk at the highest levels. In the process of developing one, risk processes should be judged by how they contribute to the making of effective strategy.
Apr 20, 2015 War on the Rocks
Given the complex, technology-heavy, and conceptually-nuanced environment of today's military, the quality of military personnel is the dominant form of competitive advantage. All the services today place maintaining a high-quality force at the top of their list of priorities.
Apr 10, 2015 Army Acquisition, Logistics and Technology Magazine
The signal achievement of the Obama foreign policy — fully on display in the new National Security Strategy — has been to avoid further missteps and lay the groundwork for progress by husbanding U.S. power, restoring the economic foundations of influence, and repairing the U.S. global image.
Feb 6, 2015 U.S. News & World Report