How a Failed Drug War Will Defeat Trump’s Afghan Adventure
After nine months of confusion, chaos and cascading tweets, Donald Trump’s White House has finally made one thing crystal clear. The United States is staying in Afghanistan to fight and — so the administration insists — win. “The killers need to know they have nowhere to hide, that no... Read more
Imagine World War III Between America and China
This piece has been adapted and expanded from Alfred McCoy’s new book, In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of U.S. Global Power. For the past 50 years, American leaders have been supremely confident that they could suffer military setbacks in places such as Cuba... Read more
The Pentagon’s New Wonder Weapons For World Dominion
Not quite a century ago, on Jan. 7, 1929, newspaper readers across America were captivated by a brand-new comic strip, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. It offered the country its first images of space-age death rays, atomic explosions and inter-planetary travel. “I was 20 years old,” World War... Read more
The CIA Haunted Me For a Half-Century
In the wake of the 2001 terrorist attacks, Washington pursued its elusive enemies across the landscapes of Asia and Africa, thanks in part to a massive expansion of its intelligence infrastructure, particularly of the emerging technologies for digital surveillance, agile drones and biometric identification. In 2010, almost a decade... Read more
How a Pink Flower Defeated a Superpower
This story originally appeared on Feb. 22, 2016. After fighting the longest war in its history, the United States stands at the brink of defeat in Afghanistan. How can this be possible? How could the world’s sole superpower have battled continuously for more than 15 years, deploying 100,000 of... Read more
The Bloodstained Rise of Global Populism
In 2016, something extraordinary happened in the politics of diverse countries around the world. With surprising speed and simultaneity, a new generation of populist leaders emerged from the margins of nominally democratic nations to win power.  In doing so, they gave voice, often in virulent fashion, to public concerns... Read more