Walter Russell Mead
Annals of Disaster: The Embargo Act

Today is not one of the great days in the history of American foreign policy. In fact it’s the 202nd anniversary of one of the stupidest things we ever did. On this day in 1807 a besotted Congress passed a law essentially banning all US foreign trade at the request of President Thomas Jefferson. It […]

Auschwitz and Me

The infamous Arbeit Macht Frei (work will make you free) sign over the main gate of the original Auschwitz camp has, it appears this morning, been found in Poland.  It had been reported stolen over the weekend.  As far as police have determined at this point, the thieves were thinking about money, not politics.  They […]

The Cluster of Copenhagen III: Towards A New American Agenda

The Cluster of Copenhagen, the chaotic and orgiastic assembly of the representatives of 192 countries plus uncountable throngs of NGO leaders and miscellaneous activists, is, as Les Gelb notes this morning over at The Daily Beast, a window into the future.  In many ways, it’s not a very nice future.In the first two posts, I […]

The Cluster of Copenhagen II: The New American Century

Barack Obama and the nation he leads owned the Copenhagen summit, and the administration used its commanding position to achieve some vital national goals.  In many ways this summit shows the outlines of an emerging world order in which the form of American leadership has changed and the chief challenges it confronts have changed, but […]

The Cluster of Copenhagen I: The Fall of Europe

Beyond the brightly crackling hearth here at Mead manor, the world press is still sorting out what happened at Copenhagen yesterday. The UK Guardian has an unequivocal take: “Copenhagen Ends in Failure!” screams the headline.  The New York Times is more cautious, noting that a deal was reached but that its provisions are less stringent […]

Obama in the Whirlwind

President Obama ran for office as Mr. Cool, the unflappable leader who would calmly lead the nation through the economic and political storms ahead.  Like Joseph Addison’s famous ‘angel in the whirlwind’ President Obama would be the unmoved mover at the center of American politics and bring his intellectual firepower and his steady temperament to […]

The Beet Lady Dies

Yesterday came the news: South Africa’s Beet Lady is dead.I’ve often been surprised but have rarely been shocked; the Beet Lady managed to do it.About five years ago in South Africa where I was attending a press conference held by Ms. Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, then Minister of Health.  Glowing with confidence and assurance she told us […]

Tea Partying Like It’s 1773

“It’s 1776 all over again, and now we got a House of Lords up here,” latter day tea-party protester William Temple told NPR in front of the Capitol yesterday.  Temple was wearing Revolutionary war garb at the time, unlike the original Boston Tea Party participants, who dressed (unconvincingly) as Mohawk Indians to conceal their identities […]

Make Us Green, Lord, But Not Yet

As the registration system in Copenhagen broke down yesterday, thousands of delegates to the global warming conference were left shivering in the cold.Reinhold Niebuhr would have liked this; irony was one of his favorite things — God’s commentary on man’s futile striving.But Copenhagen is more than Niebuhrian; in many ways the global warming conference is […]

Talk To The Panda

“Aussie, Chinese Officials urge Pandas to reproduce” ran the headline in this AP story from Down Under.I haven’t talked to the pandas much myself, so I don’t know whether they were paying attention.  The closest I’ve come to an exchange with a panda was at the circus in Shanghai where they had a panda trained […]

© The American Interest LLC 2005-2018 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.