The Great Debate

North Korea is a nuclear power. Here’s why the world just has to live with it.

March 10, 2016
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) reacts as he watches a long range rocket launch in North Korea, in this photo released by Kyodo February 7, 2016. North Korea launched a long-range rocket on Sunday carrying what it has called a satellite, but its neighbors and Washington denounced the launch as a missile test, conducted in defiance of U.N. sanctions and just weeks after a nuclear bomb test.  Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo  ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN. - RTX25T51

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) reacts as he watches a long-range rocket launch in North Korea, February 7, 2016. REUTERS/Kyodo

A failing nuclear treaty with Russia shows the right way to deal with Iran

July 2, 2015
Negotiators of Iran and six world powers face each other at a table in the historic basement of Palais Coburg hotel in Vienna

Negotiators of Iran and six world powers face each other in the historic basement of Palais Coburg hotel in Vienna April 24, 2015. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

from Stories I’d like to see:

Did Islamic State really call a convention of nuts and have 15,000 people show up?

November 4, 2014

Islamic State fighter gestures from a vehicle in the countryside of the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, after the Islamic State fighters took control of the area

Last week, the Guardian reported, “The United Nations has warned that foreign jihadists are swarming into the twin conflicts in Iraq and Syria on ‘an unprecedented scale’ and from countries that had not previously contributed combatants to global terrorism.”

from Compass:

To build a coalition against Islamic State, U.S. must try a little humility

September 25, 2014

U.S. President Barack Obama chairs the U.N. Security Council summit in New York

When President Barack Obama assumed the presidency of the United Nations Security Council Wednesday, he summoned the full weight of U.S. power to a cause with seeming universal appeal: defeating the barbarism of Islamic State -- or, as Obama calls the militant group, Islamic State in Syria and the Levant (ISIL).

Turkey cashes in on the Iran talks

December 12, 2013

You may have thought the Geneva deal struck last month between Iran and the P5+1 nations (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) was a sweet one for Tehran — getting billions in sanctions relief in exchange for mere promises to halt its nuclear program.

Syria: What happened to diplomacy?

September 3, 2013

There is a bizarre quality to the U.S. public debate about bombing Syria. Much time and effort has been spent analyzing President Barack Obama’s decision to finally call for a vote in Congress: whether this was a wise choice; what the repercussions of an attack may be; the (il)legality of acting without a United Nations Security Council mandate; the moral case for bombing, and the strategic case for restraint.

In Syria, try banks before bombs

August 29, 2013

As President Barack Obama weighs the U.S. response to chemical weapons attacks against Syrian civilians, one soft power option should still be at top of his to-do list: cutting off access to the U.S. financial system to those doing business with Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.