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Doug Bandow
Doug Bandow is a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute and served as a Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan. He also is a columnist with Forbes online and frequent contributor to National Interest online and American Spectator online. Formerly a columnist for, a nationally syndicated columnist with Copley News Service, and editor of the monthly political magazine Inquiry, he has been widely published in such periodicals as Time, Newsweek, and Fortune, as well as leading newspapers including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post. He has written several books, including Foreign Follies: America's New Global Empire (Xulon Press), The Korean Conundrum: America's Troubled Relations with North and South Korea (co-author, Palgrave/Macmillan), and Tripwire: Korea and U.S. Foreign Policy in a Changed World (Cato Institute).

Entries by Doug Bandow

Recognize Responsible Islamic Voices such as the Organization Of Islamic Cooperation

(0) Comments | Posted June 24, 2016 | 4:12 PM

America's relationship with Islam is fraught with tension. Donald Trump doesn't want to let any more Muslims into the U.S. He's not alone. But no one wins if Americans end up fighting an endless war with 1.6 billion people worldwide.

Rather, Washington should encourage responsible Islamic voices. One is...

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Let's Bring Troops Home From Okinawa: Japanese Should Decide Own Defense Future

(13) Comments | Posted June 21, 2016 | 8:44 AM

Could the U.S.-Japan alliance founder as a result of alcohol? Apparently. At least, that's the implication of the U.S. Navy's ban on drinking by personnel stationed on the Japanese island of Okinawa.

It would be far better to phase out America's military presence on Okinawa, turning U.S. bases back to...

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The Politics Of War: Is Donald Trump Helping The Cause for Peace?

(19) Comments | Posted June 17, 2016 | 11:00 AM

When the Berlin Wall fell, Warsaw Pact dissolved, and Soviet Union split apart, U.S. foreign policy became obsolete almost overnight. For a brief moment advocates of a quasi-imperial foreign policy seemed worried.

For instance, NATO advocates were reduced to talking about having the anti-Soviet military compact promote student exchanges...

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Sanctions Against North Korea Hurt the People Rather Than the Government

(8) Comments | Posted June 15, 2016 | 3:35 AM

North Korea has completed its first Korean Workers' Party congress in 36 years. The ruling elite appeared to be getting along fine despite international sanctions. Washington needs to find a new approach toward the North.

The so-called Democratic People's Republic of Korea poses one of the most vexing challenges...

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Brits Should Look to America Before Voting on Brexit

(44) Comments | Posted June 12, 2016 | 5:38 PM

Donald Trump's success in the U.S. is not unique. Europe is being buffeted by similar populist currents. Illiberal, nationalist governments rule Hungary and Poland. Austria nearly elected a right-wing nationalist as president. Anti-EU leftists share power in Portugal.

Swiss voters have targeted immigration and Islam. The Dutch recently rejected...

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Hillary Clinton Criticizes Donald Trump, Reveals Herself to Be Queen of War

(197) Comments | Posted June 9, 2016 | 8:35 AM

Distrusted by most Americans and generating little enthusiasm even among supporters, Hillary Clinton has wrapped up the Democratic presidential nomination but fallen behind Donald Trump in some polls. Her antidote? A brutal attack on Trump for what she termed his rants, feuds, and lies.

It was an ironic tactic for...

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Advance Human Rights in North Korea by Confronting Security Challenges

(0) Comments | Posted June 6, 2016 | 3:44 PM

North Korea is a multilateral conundrum, challenging the U.S., China, and numerous countries in between. Despite enduring decades of confrontation and isolation, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea continues to accelerate nuclear development, miniaturize nuclear weapons, and produce intercontinental missiles.

Failure to restrain the DPRK, along with understandable horror...

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Despite What Donald Trump Says, Free Trade Benefits Americans

(32) Comments | Posted June 3, 2016 | 5:17 AM

Trade is good for the U.S. Americans benefit from purchasing inexpensive products and services from abroad as well as selling their own wares around the globe. Americans must look overseas for markets: 95 percent of the world's people and 80 percent of the world's economy are elsewhere. Unfortunately, we all...

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North Korea's Kims Should Remember the Prophets of Baal Before Claiming to Be God

(7) Comments | Posted June 1, 2016 | 3:50 AM

North Korea without doubt is unique. If nothing else, its claimed accomplishments rival the faux Russian achievements cited by Pavel Chekov in the original Star Trek. Yet only the Democratic People's Republic of Korea has established a Communist monarchy, now reaching the third generation.

The real question for Kim...

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Will Donald Trump Save America From an Unnecessary War?

(51) Comments | Posted May 31, 2016 | 6:39 AM

Donald Trump is headed toward the Republican Party's presidential nomination. He's among the most pugnacious of candidates, routinely trashing Republicans, Democrats, immigrants, Mexicans, women, Muslims, and foreign policy professionals.

Many of these political battles could reduce his chance of getting elected president. But his fight with the last group...

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Washington Turns Every Military Alliance Into Welfare

(46) Comments | Posted May 23, 2016 | 4:54 AM

America's international position is distinguished by its alliance networks. Presidential candidates decry today's dangerous world, yet the U.S. is allied with every major industrialized power, save China and Russia. It is a position Washington's few potential adversaries must envy.

Unfortunately, littering the globe with security commitments is costly. The U.S....

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U.S. and NATO Should End New Cold War With Russia

(223) Comments | Posted May 21, 2016 | 8:38 AM

U.S. and NATO should end New Cold War with Russia
By Doug Bandow

The NATO-Russia Council recently met in Brussels for the first time in nearly two years. "We are not afraid of dialogue," announced alliance Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. Alas, the talks didn't get very far. Afterward he explained:...

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Saudi Arabia Needs the U.S. More Than the U.S. Needs Saudi Arabia

(88) Comments | Posted May 17, 2016 | 3:40 AM

Despite recently expressing doubts about America's relationship with Saudi Arabia, President Barack Obama recently flew to Riyadh. Yet again he sought to "reassure" the Saudi royals about U.S. support.

In fact, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia raises the question: what are allies for? If the president wants to leave his...

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Egypt's Copts Likely to Find Persecution Ahead from Increasingly Repressive Military Regime

(6) Comments | Posted May 14, 2016 | 3:30 PM

The Middle East has turned hostile to Christians and other religious minorities. The Iraqi Christian community has been devastated. Syria's civil war loosed the murderous Islamic State on Christians and others. Libya's disintegration opened the nation to IS fighters bent on killing anyone of the wrong faith.

Also at risk...

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There's No Economic Justification for Massive U.S. Military Presence Around the Globe

(71) Comments | Posted May 9, 2016 | 2:03 PM

America's major alliances date back six to seven decades. Washington has been protecting Europe, Japan and South Korea for longer than most Americans have been alive.

The original justification for this expensive global role was the Evil Empire, as President Ronald Reagan called the Soviet Union. Aggressive communism had...

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"We" Aren't Responsible for World's Problems: Time to Recognize Limits of West's Influence

(114) Comments | Posted May 7, 2016 | 1:36 PM

What do you do after you brought your party's control of government to a dramatic end? You become an international scold and blowhard, blaming the world's problems on everyone else--who have no ability to solve any of them.

In fact, has-beens and once-weres often are brought in as decorations...

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North Korea Trumps U.S. With Coming Party Congress

(5) Comments | Posted May 3, 2016 | 5:53 AM

America's political silly season will rush toward a close with the two party conventions this summer, followed by the November presidential election. Both gatherings are likely to be lively. Indeed, Nixon political operative Roger Stone predicts riots if Donald Trump fails to win the GOP nod.

But both of these...

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China Must Confront Its North Korea Problem

(14) Comments | Posted April 25, 2016 | 6:03 AM

Great powers usually have client states. Although a sign of influence, the latter often are more trouble than they are worth. North Korea increasingly appears that way for Beijing.

The Chinese-North Korean relationship was oft said to be like lips and teeth, forged in blood during the Korean War. That's...

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Burma on Road to Democracy: How Far How Fast?

(6) Comments | Posted April 23, 2016 | 7:30 AM

A half century of military dictatorship has officially ended in Burma, or Myanmar. The cost has been high, with brutal war and systematic repression finally giving way to nominal civilian rule. Yet taking the final steps toward democracy may be as difficult as making the transition so far.

For years...

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Uncle Sam Should Close Its Nuclear Umbrella Over Asia

(3) Comments | Posted April 19, 2016 | 7:44 AM

Donald Trump again caused international consternation. His remarks about South Korea and Japan developing nuclear weapons set off a minor firestorm. "It would be catastrophic were the United States to shift its position and indicate that we support somehow the proliferation of nuclear weapons to additional countries," argued deputy national...

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