• Trump's Deft Game - 9/20/2019

    President Donald Trump does not want to be goaded into war with Iran, which is wise. He does not want to appear weak in the aftermath of the attacks on the Saudi oil installations–for which Iran has been blamed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (“an act of war”), and others–which is understandable. By inviting the Saudis to declare their non-binding casus foederis he has found the way out.

  • Can Trump Still Avoid War With Iran? - 9/20/2019

    President Donald Trump does not want war with Iran. America does not want war with Iran. Even the Senate Republicans are advising against military action in response to that attack on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities.

  • America First - 9/19/2019

    Just in case you were wondering: a war with Iran would be a disaster for the United States.

  • Robert Mugabe: An African Career - 9/18/2019

    A belated note: Robert Mugabe’s death at 95 (September 6) was some six decades overdue. He was a thoroughly nasty piece of work. His dictum that “the only white man you can trust is a dead white man” has cost his people dearly, arguably even more so than the dispossessed and racially cleansed white farmers and administrators who had developed Rhodesia into a stable and—by African standards—spectacularly prosperous place.

  • Nigel Farage Leads While the Tories Are in Shambles - 9/16/2019

    The citizens of metroland like to think of themselves as dwelling in a global hub. They may regard London as a city-state, like Renaissance Venice, or as a company town whose HQ is Westminster. It has yet to reach the corporate consciousness that, as Coriolanus put it, “There is a world elsewhere,” beyond the boundaries of the Roman settlement of Londinium. That “world elsewhere” is now being redefined in provincial England, especially in the North.

  • After Bolton, Trump Goals Remain Unrealized - 9/13/2019

    The sudden and bitter departure of John Bolton from the White House was baked in the cake from the day he arrived there.

  • John Bolton's Long Overdue Departure - 9/11/2019

    Only by firing John Bolton, I wrote in this blog three months ago, President Donald Trump may demonstrate “that he is still ready, even belatedly, to stop the ongoing kidnapping of his foreign policy by the enemy within the gates.” He has done so, thus reducing the danger of America’s entanglement in yet another Middle Eastern war and improving his own chances of reelection next year.

  • I Remember - 9/11/2019

    I was in the air when the first tower was hit; I watched the two towers fall, stupefied and enraged, alone in my hotel room in Norfolk. After my business was done, I went to the eerily quiet Norfolk airport to begin the drive home.

  • What’s Happened to the Mother of Parliaments? - 9/11/2019

    Scene: the House of Commons. Speaker Bercow announces that he will stand down on October 31. Labour benches applaud wildly—the convention that members do not clap is so retro—and the Conservative benches are grimly silent, other than two or three malcontents who are headed out of the party anyway.

  • Main Street U.S.A. - 9/10/2019

    We the People... The world, my friends, is going to... and that's just the point: We don't know where in the world the world is going. Only that it's moving at a high speed, in ways likely to upset existing orders.

  • Walmart's 'Woke' Capitalism - 9/9/2019

    Walmart—the world's largest retailer—has announced it's taking a side in the gun debate. The company will no longer sell handgun ammunition at its stores, nor will it sell rifle rounds that can be "also used in large capacity clips on military-style weapons." Then, Doug McMillon, Walmart's CEO, issued a statement calling on Congress to ban many semiautomatic rifles and seize firearms from some Americans who haven't been convicted of a crime—or even charged with anything.
  • Boris Johnson Considers Martyrdom - 9/9/2019

    Boris Johnson will not go to Canossa, unlike Theresa May who could not stay away from the place. For her, the Castle of Canossa was the Europa Building in Brussels, the seat of imperial power where the EU potentates hold their quinquennial Durbar and where the feudatory princes from as far as Bulgaria and Romania come to vow allegiance.

  • Can Joe Biden Run This Marathon? - 9/6/2019

    Thursday, Sept. 14, looks to be a fateful day in the half-century-long political career of Joe Biden. That night, a three-hour debate will be held, a marathon in politics.

  • Recovering the Medieval Family - 9/5/2019

    Hatred of the past ill becomes a historian. Yet it is hard not to detect this disfiguring animus—paired with an overweening love of contemporaneity—in the works of many modern historians of family life.
  • A Purge Before Brexit - 9/4/2019

    “The name is Pride. Colonel Pride.” Out of the mists of English history a figure emerges whom we can recognize today. We would call him an “enforcer,” a man ordered to carry out a harsh policy determined by his superiors. In December 1648 Colonel Pride rid the Long Parliament of members unwanted by the Army rulers, Fairfax and Cromwell, Parliament then being owned by the Army.


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