Devastating Criticism for the Obama Administration on Syria

From two of the administration's former defense secretaries, and from its former acting director of Central Intelligence: President Obama’s first two defense secretaries publicly questioned the administration’s handling of the Syrian crisis on Tuesday night and expressed skepticism about whether Russia can broker a deal to remove Syria’s chemical weapons. In a joint appearance in …

Larry Summers Will Not Be Chairman of the Federal Reserve

I am late to this, but as those who have been covering the horserace for the chairmanship of the Federal Reserve already know, Larry Summers has taken himself out of the running. Sarah Binder makes some good points regarding the rise and fall of Summers' prospects as a candidate for the chairmanship. You should read her …

Thomas Friedman Could Not Be Reached for Comment

Link: The Chinese government has intensified its crackdown on the internet, describing online criticism of the ruling Communist party as illegal and airing a televised confession from one of the country’s most popular online commentators. An article in Monday’s edition of the influential party journal “Seeking Truth” described online criticism of the party and government …

Our Remarkably Unfabulous Middle East Policy

One of the best--and most depressing--analyses that I have seen regarding the recent Russian-American deal on Syria: The United States and Russia have now averted U.S. military action against the Syrian regime for Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons against civilians. Is the agreement reached by Secretary Kerry and Foreign Minister Lavrov on September 9 …

Russia: Revealing Its True Self

There was a terrible shooting at the Washington Navy Yard today, which elicited concern, shock and sympathy from people of decent and elevated sensibilities, and gloating from Alexey Pushkov, the Russian parliamentary foreign affairs chief. I don't know why Pushkov believed that it was necessary to taunt and make fun of Americans in the aftermath …

Shadi Hamid on the Obama Administration’s Diplomatic Non-Victory

Scathing, and entirely accurate: A deal with Russia on chemical weapons may be a "win" for President Obama but only in the narrowest sense. He managed to avoid a war he desperately did not want. But with the near-obsessive focus on chemical-weapons use, the core issues have been pushed to the side. These were always more or …

Guess Who Thinks Obamacare Might Need to Be Repealed

If you guessed "Tea Party Republicans," you only get partial credit. Incidentally, while I am pleased that the New York Times is covering this story, my guess is that if a key portion of a Republican president's political base rebelled against one of said president's key policy initiatives, we would be hearing about it nonstop …