RealClearWorld Articles

Authoritarians Are Targeting Opponents in Other Countries

David J. Kramer, Chris Walsh, and Igor Khrestin - April 19, 2024

One of the most disturbing and growing threats to freedom around the world is transnational repression – when authoritarians and other bad actors target their critics in third countries, including right here in the United States. The list of countries using transnational repression reads like a who’s who of authoritarian regimes around the world, from China and North Korea to Russia and Iran. Their goal is simple: To silence dissidents and anyone willing to shine a light on atrocities committed by the authoritarian regime. Their methods include digital and physical surveillance,...

President Biden Must Not Encourage Illegal Mass Migration From Haiti

Senator Marco Rubio - April 18, 2024

“It’s better to be the United States’ enemy than its friend.” Foreign officials tell me this is their perception under the Biden Administration, which has a strange habit of appeasing our adversaries while holding our allies to impossible standards. It’s bad foreign policy, plain and simple. Moreover, it’s encouraging chaos in our region. Just look at what’s happening in the Dominican Republic. The Caribbean nation is facing extraordinary migratory pressure from neighboring Haiti, which has all but collapsed into anarchy. President Luis Abinader has...

UN Resolution on the Balkans Would Be a Mistake

Marko Djuric - April 17, 2024

A draft U.N. resolution, proposed by Germany, Rwanda and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and supported by a group of countries including the U.S., France and Türkiye, that declares July 11 the International Day of Reflection and Remembrance of the 1995 Srebrenica Genocide threatens to undermine our collective understanding of reconciliation and the decades-long effort to bring justice to the Balkans. The resolution is ill-advised. It would undermine the delicate peace and stability in Bosnia and Herzegovina and threatens to derail essential reconciliation efforts that have been painstakingly...

Japan Has Become America’s Most Important Ally

Kenneth Weinstein - April 10, 2024

When Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida heads to the White House on Wednesday to meet with President Biden, he comes as the leader of a nation that has quietly become America’s most important ally.  But Japan has become America’s most important ally in a rather unconventional way: by speaking softly and keeping a decidedly lower profile than other, more vocal U.S. allies. The past decade has witnessed the emergence of a new Japan on the world stage. Rocked by China’s behavior during the COVID epidemic, by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, by China’s continuing...


Pahlavi and the Defeat of the Iranian Opposition

Alireza Nader - April 10, 2024

The murder of the young Iranian woman Mahsa Amini on September 16, 2022, led to the largest popular uprising against the Islamic Republic since the 1979 revolution brought the theocratic regime to power. Amini’s death not only galvanized the people of Iran against the regime, but also energized the often-fractious Iranian diaspora into action like never before. Soon hundreds of thousands of Iranians were marching across the globe in solidarity with their sisters and brothers in Iran. The protest chant “Woman, Life, Liberty” shouted on thousands of streets worldwide, soon...

Kasparov: “Dictators Tell the Truth About What They Plan for the Future”

Mitzi Perdue - April 10, 2024

Garry Kasparov is famous both for his 20-year reign as the world’s best chess player and for Putin’s recent declaration that he’s a terrorist. However, Kasparov deserves even more recognition for a prediction he made over two decades ago in The Wall Street Journal. Kasparov warned that if the West failed to recognize the threat to democracy that Putin represented, the consequences would be far-reaching.  I asked him in a recent conversation, “Given that back then, people felt that a large-scale war in Europe was...

Dropping the Cold War Framework in U.S.-China Competition

Sabreena Croteau - April 9, 2024

Rhetoric around U.S.-China relations in the past few years has frequently been framed as an unavoidable “New Cold War,” pitting the U.S. and its allies as the “democratic bloc” vs a China-led “autocratic bloc,” with Russia playing a supporting role for the latter. However, it’s a term and a framework that both U.S. rhetoric and policy need to turn away from, as the Cold War is a poor point of comparison for today’s great power competition between the U.S. and China. Even the lowercase “cold war” understanding of bilateral competition...

New Report Sheds Light on Trade Loopholes That Weaken U.S.

Matt Mowers - April 3, 2024

The Select Committee on the Strategic Competition between the United States and the CCP, headed by Congressman Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), released a report on how the U.S. can combat the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) economic aggression and strengthen America’s interests geopolitically.  The takeaway – we must reduce our economic dependence on China by rebuilding our domestic supply chains and preventing intellectual property (IP) theft by the CCP and other adversaries. To do so though, it’s essential to...


Time Is Running Out for Saudi Arabia

Eric Bordenkircher - March 29, 2024

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry issued a statement about the normalization of relations with Israel on February 7. It declared that Saudi Arabia would not establish relations with Israel until the “brotherly Palestinian people obtain their legitimate rights”—the creation and recognition of an independent state with 1967 borders and East Jerusalem as its capital. The statement refined and affirmed comments that Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan made in Davos three weeks earlier. The announcement leaves Saudi security and interests...

The Truth About European Defense Spending

Anthony J. Constantini - March 27, 2024

Much hay has been made about Sweden’s entry into NATO. While it is a good thing that Sweden – which was officially neutral but was essentially acting as a free rider – is finally partaking in the defense of its continent, its arrival highlights a continuing problem: Sweden, and most NATO states, are still spending less than 2% of their budgets on GDP. But it even moreso shines a light on why this is happening: many European states simply cannot afford to spend more on defense. Firstly, let us dispense with what would likely be the liberal internationalist response to these...

Europe And NATO In Crisis

James S. Fay - March 18, 2024

The last two weeks were historically traumatic for Europe and NATO. It will take some time for both Europe and America to digest what happened. Unless he gets his way in Ukraine, Putin threatened to annihilate Europe with a rain of nuclear missiles. Almost at the same time, German leaders broke a decades-long taboo and openly discussed the development of nuclear weapons. Not to be left behind, French President Macron proposed a dramatic alternative: that Germany pay for expanding the French nuclear umbrella over Europe. Macron broke another taboo when he suggested that NATO would have to send...

Can Two Bad Ideas in Israel and Hamas Be Killed?

Ronald Tiersky - March 7, 2024

Israel’s attempt to “destroy” Hamas is often derided that you can kill its leaders and fighters and blow up its tunnel network, but that “you can’t kill an idea”. This seems an obvious proposition, but it is false. Or rather, in the abstract no idea ever dies but can as a practical matter fall into the dustbin of history.    Hamas’s particular idea is “the Palestinian cause”. Rescuing the Palestinian cause was the justification for attacking Israel on October 7. It was the justification for taking hostages, which is against...


Guatemala Must Resist Beijing’s Bullying

Marco Rubio - March 6, 2024

“Guatemala,” according to Reuters, “is considering reaching out to develop formal trade ties with China.” We know what happens next. The Chinese Communist Party will do what it always does and attempt to condition trade relations on Guatemala’s denial of Taiwan’s legitimacy (as well as its support for China’s other geopolitical goals). The question is: will Guatemala succumb, or will President Bernardo Arévalo resist Beijing’s bullying? This is a crucial moment, because Guatemala isn’t just any Latin American country; it’s the...

Canada Is Losing the Plot on Border Security

Christian Leuprecht - March 5, 2024

Finally. After 25,000 Mexicans applied for asylum in Canada last year, thousands of attempts to illegally cross into the United States on the northeast border, and millions of dollars spent on security and aid, the Canadian government has decided to close the barn door (or fix its own mistake). After pleas from the United States and Quebec’s premier, the Liberal government is reinstating visa requirements for Mexican citizens entering Canada.  It reverses the government’s ill-informed highly political decision against the expert advice of its own civil service.  More...

The Taliban Stand To Make a Fortune From Gatekeeping Afghanistan’s Natural Resources

Jessica Ludwig - March 5, 2024

Afghanistan is sitting on an estimated $1 trillion in natural resources – including gold, oil, coal, copper, timber, precious gemstones, marble, onyx, and vast lithium deposits – a potentially lucrative cash cow that the international community can’t allow the country’s Taliban rulers to exclusively control. Transparent and accountable growth of Afghanistan’s extractive industries could contribute to the economic development needed to aid the nearly 70% of Afghans who couldn't meet their basic needs in 2023. But instead, the Taliban have...

What Navalny’s Death Means for Russia and the West

Alexander Clackson - February 24, 2024

The sudden death of Alexei Navalny, the most prominent opposition figure against Vladimir Putin’s government, marks yet another chilling moment in Russian politics. Navalny’s suspicious demise in an Arctic Russian prison has sparked international outrage and a flurry of condemnation, especially from Western leaders who have squarely blamed Putin for this event. The brazen nature of Navalny’s death, following several years of torture-like conditions in prison, signifies that Putin feels invincible right now. At the same time, his regime appears to survive only on...


The U.S. Must Stand by and for the Kurds

Gregg Roman - February 22, 2024

Amidst the recent tragic attack on a U.S. base in eastern Syria by an Iran-backed militia resulting in the loss of six Kurdish members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), it is imperative for the United States to reevaluate its commitment to the Kurdish people, our steadfast allies in the region. The Kurds, a resilient and significant ethnic group without a recognized state of their own, have long been instrumental in the fight against terrorism and the preservation of American interests in a volatile Middle East. It is time for the U.S. to honor its promises, acknowledge the...

Enough with “Do Something” Foreign Policy

Anthony J. Constantini - February 21, 2024

The killing of American troops stationed in Jordan by Iranian proxies has understandably unleashed much umbrage across the U.S. There have been bipartisan calls for some sort of response, and interventionists like John Bolton have argued for strikes in Iran itself. After considering their options, the Biden administration responded with strikes on those proxies in what some experts said “could begin to send a deterrent message.” As of now, this imagined “deterrent” has failed, as insurgent attacks have not ceased. But after 20 years,...

The Pandemic Treaty That Won’t Prevent a Pandemic

Steven Groves and Brett Schaefer - February 17, 2024

If a “pandemic treaty” fails to account for the dismal international response to COVID-19 and isn’t focused on preventing future pandemics, is it really a “pandemic treaty”? Yet that’s the current state of the draft “pandemic treaty” being negotiated under the auspices of the World Health Organization (WHO). The failures of the international health system’s response to COVID are well-established. The People’s Republic of China failed to inform the international community of the outbreak in a timely manner as required by the...

Missouri’s Chance to Hold China Accountable for COVID

Michael J. Ellis - February 8, 2024

More than four years after the outbreak of the COVID virus in Wuhan, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) may finally face responsibility for its actions in an American court. Not long after COVID arrived in the United States, Missouri sued the Chinese government and several affiliated entities in federal district court. The state argued that China allowed COVID to spread, covered up critical information about the virus, and hoarded personal protective equipment (PPE), causing massive economic disruptions and loss of life that harmed the state and its citizens. For its part, China refused...