North America

Iran in the Time of Maximal Compellence

The United States' strategy of maximal compellence against Iran is frustrating, but not yet compelling. To reduce the risk of war, the Trump administration needs to soften and broaden its approach.

Book Review: Why America Loses Wars

YPFP Fellow Stephan Delaney reviews "Why America Loses Wars," by noted military historian Dr. Donald Stoker.

Both Parties Agree: The House’s FY2020 NDAA Is Politicized. Why That Matters.

While the Democrats and Republicans are unlikely to come to a full agreement on who politicized the normally standard National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) procedure, bipartisan finger-pointing suggests both sides agree that this breakdown in precedent is cause for alarm.

Foreign Aid Should Persuade, Not Coerce

The Trump administration has demonstrated a willingness to use foreign aid to coerce countries like El Savador into adopting favorable policies. But what are the long-term consequences of this approach?

For the Chinese, Trade War Success is a Matter of Pride

In bringing the United States to the brink of trade war with China, President Donald Trump wants to narrow the US trade deficit and loosen business restrictions. But what does China want?

No Woman Entrepreneur Left Behind

Investing in economic empowerment for all women – regardless of color – will not only give women the ability to participate equally, it will also drive US economic growth. Choosing to preserve the status quo will result in a $4.4 trillion missed opportunity.

Sanctions are Driving Market Reforms in North Korea

The United States faces pressure from South Korea to ease sanctions on North Korea in hopes it will speed liberalizing reforms. This would be a mistake.

On Huawei, Canada Risks Far More Than Hypocrisy

Last month Canada was thrown into the international spotlight when Meng Wanzhou, Chief Financial Officer of the Chinese telecom giant Huawei, was arrested in Vancouver at the request of US authorities. She is suspected of committing fraud by violating US sanctions against Iran. China responded in turn, detaining two Canadian citizens and sentencing a third,…

A Step in the Right Direction? Trump’s “Aid” to Central America

Although the Trump administration pays little attention to the Americas outside of U.S. concerns with the “Troika of Tyranny,” the administration is taking a stance against immigration from the region into the United States and at combatting Chinese influence in the region. On December 18, 2018, President Trump announced a $5.8 billion aid package to…

On Removing Presidential First Use

The United States’ president can, without congressional permission or expert consultation, order the firing of nuclear weapons at any time and – so long as the nuclear football (a briefcase containing the nuclear codes and firing command) is present – from anywhere. The entire process, from the president opening the football to nuclear tipped missiles…

Pivot from the Middle East

Near the end of 2018, President Trump announced, via Twitter, that the United States would withdraw the roughly 2,000 troops it had deployed to Syria. It is believed that this apparent surprise announcement was a contributing factor in Secretary of Defense Mattis’s decision to resign. In addition to losing a Secretary of Defense, the decision…

Making Elections Great Again: Why US Foreign Policy Is Threatening Liberal Democracies

Since Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States, the norms of diplomacy and international relations that many had considered settled have been revisited and redefined. Among the more striking examples are the administration’s willingness to talk to North Korea, igniting a trade war with China, and praising various authoritarian leaders. Most radically, what…