Putin: During and After Sochi (The New York Review of Books, April 2014).

Dropping the Political F-Bomb (Foreign Policy, March 14, 2014). Nowadays, it seems, everyone’s a fascist. Here’s a handy guide to identifying the real thing.

The Streets Ain’t What They Used to Be (Foreign Policy, March 9, 2014). Back in the days of the Arab Spring, optimists predicted a bright future for democratic upheavals around the world. But the reality in places like Ukraine, Venezuela, Turkey, and Thailand is far messier.

Rescue Me! (Foreign Policy, March 2, 2014). Vladimir Putin is justifying his grab for Crimea with the need to protect the “Russian-speaking population” in Ukraine. But why stop there?

Inside the Mind of George F. Kennan (The National Interest, Feb. 25, 2014). A review of the new edition of Kennan’s diaries.

A House Still Divided (Foreign Policy, Feb. 21, 2014 ). Ukraine’s problems go deeper than President Yanukovych.

The Young and the Restless (Foreign Policy, Feb. 17, 2014). Yes, young people are often a force for political change. But what kind, exactly?

Snow Blind (Foreign Policy, Feb. 7, 2014). When Americans look at Russia, they see what they want to see. And that’s dangerous.

Why Sochi? (The New York Review of Books, Feb. 5, 2014). Why did the Kremlin decide to stage the Olympics on the edge of a war zone?

How to Solve the Crisis in Ukraine (Foreign Policy, Jan. 30, 2014). The conflict between Ukraine’s opposition and the president is escalating. But there’s room for a compromise.

Closing Statements (Economist Debates, Jan. 30, 2014). Are worries about the health of democracy overblown? (Part Three)

The Opposition’s Rebuttal Remarks (Economist Debates, Jan. 24, 2014). Are worries about the health of democracy overblown? (Part Two)

African Growing Pains (Foreign Policy, Jan. 23, 2014). Africa is poised for economic growth. But it won’t all be smooth sailing.

The Opposition’s Opening Remarks (Economist Debates, Jan. 21, 2014). Are worries about the health of democracy overblown? (Part One)

In 2014, It’s Not Just About the Ballot Box (Foreign Policy, Jan. 10, 2014). The year ahead will tell us a lot about the state of democracy around the world. But voting is just one part of the story.

Votes, Hopes, and Missing Faces (Foreign Policy, Dec. 16, 2013). A postcard from Timbuktu.

The Desert Versus the Delta (Foreign Policy, Dec. 13, 2013 ). Why democracy is good for the environment.

The Heretical Pope Francis Vs. Rush Limbaugh (Foreign Policy, Dec. 6, 2013). When a radical pope says it’s time we stopped treating capitalism like it’s a religion, American conservatives get preachy.

Ukraine’s Hostage Crisis (Foreign Policy, Nov. 22, 2013). How one woman’s fate is derailing Ukraine’s European dream.

Does the World Need a Vatican Spring? (Foreign Policy, Nov. 15, 2013). Pope Francis wants to reform the church. But does that mean giving believes a vote?

Eulogy for a Quiet Revolutionary (Foreign Policy, Oct. 31, 2013). What today’s activists can learn from the life and times of the heroic Polish politician who passed away earlier this week.

Misunderestimating Bush and Cheney (The National Interest, Nov. 1, 2013). My review of Peter Baker’s new book, Days of Fire.

Tycoon Warning (Foreign Policy, Oct. 24, 2013). How the obscenely rich are becoming the new dictators of the 21st century.

Peer Pressure (Foreign Policy, Oct. 14, 2013). The British Commonwealth is stirring up unaccustomed controversy. And that’s a good thing.

What My Daughter Deserves (Foreign Policy, Oct. 3, 2013). The United Nations wants us to make life better for girls. It’s a worthy aim. But what does that mean in practice?

The Fight for the Soul of Russia’s Opposition (Foreign Policy, Sept. 26, 2013). As nationalist fervor intensifies, Vladimir Putin’s opponents face some tough choices.

Don’t Surrender Libya to the Terrorists (Foreign Policy, Sept. 10, 2013). As we mark the anniversary of the death of Chris Stevens, there are some in Washington who’d like to turn the drones loose on Benghazi. Here’s why that would be a bad idea.

Just Show It (Foreign Policy, Sept. 5, 2013). The U.S. media continue to tiptoe around the horrors of war. It’s time to put more violence on TV.

Islands in the Desert (Foreign Policy, August 14, 2013). The problem, and the promise, of Libya’s new city-states.

Zintan Versus the World (Foreign Policy, August 9, 2013). Why a small town in Libya refuses to give up custody of the revolution’s most high-profile prisoner.

Gridlock, Libyan Style (Foreign Policy, August 5, 2013). What Libya’s traffic tells you about its politics.

In Libya, They Really Are Out To Get You (Foreign Policy, July 31, 2013). Why paranoia is the key to Libyan politics.

The Alchemy of Protest (Foreign Policy, July 26, 2013). When do mass political demonstrations work?

Mob Rule (Foreign Policy, July 19, 2013). Why organized crime is a growing force in global politics.

1979 and All That (Prospect, July 18, 2013). Global politics are still shaped by five seismic events in a single year.

Blood in the Streets (Foreign Policy, July 8, 2013). Massacring unarmed protestors is more common than you might think — and governments often get away with it.

Beyond the Barricades (Foreign Policy, July 2, 2013). From the Amazon to the Nile, the masses are taking to the streets. But will the Great Awakening of 2013 actually lead to change?

Running from the Arab Spring (Foreign Policy, June 29, 2013). Syria isn’t the only place with a refugee problem.

Why Iran Can’t Reform (Foreign Policy, June 19, 2013). Many commentators are hailing the results of the Iranian presidential election as a victory for popular choice. But that feel-good narrative misses the bigger story.

Secret Police State (Foreign Policy, June 14, 2013). What’s worse: the NSA or the East German Stasi?

Can Tunisia Save the Arab Spring? (Foreign Policy, June 7, 2013)
Of all the Arab Spring countries, little Tunisia is the one that’s making the most progress toward full-fledged democracy.

When Afghanistan Was Just a Stop on the Hippie Trail (Huffington Post, June 1, 2013).

What I Left Out (Foreign Policy, May 24, 2013).
I wrote a book about 1979, but I left out the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel. Here’s why.

China: Year Zero (Foreign Policy, May 7, 2013).
1979 and the birth of an economic miracle.

The Bombers’ World (The New York Review of Books, May 6, 2013).
An exploration of the Tsarnaev brothers.

“Misha” Speaks: An Interview with the Alleged Boston Bomber’s “Svengali” (The New York Review of Books, April 28, 2013)

Weren’t Buddhists Supposed to Be Pacifists? (Foreign Policy, April 23, 2013)
Their religion may stress peace, but some Buddhists are showing that they’re entirely capable of violence in the name of faith.

A Guide to Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s Favorite YouTube videos (Foreign Policy, April 19, 2013)

Think Again: Margaret Thatcher (Foreign Policy, April 8, 2013)
he former British prime minister was a transformative politician. But her public image as an unblinking Iron Lady fails to do justice to her complexity.

The War We Couldn’t See (The New York Review of Books, March 20, 2013).

The Tangled Tale of Malaysia’s Dirty Battleground State (Foreign Policy, March 13, 2013)

The Democracy Boondoggle in Iraq (Foreign Policy, March 5, 2013)
The U.S. spent billions promoting democracy in Iraq. Now the official verdict is in: It was all for nothing.

Handle with Care (Foreign Policy, Feb. 21, 2013)
Japan is Washington’s most important Asian ally. But in some ways it’s also the trickiest.

It’s Not About Us (Foreign Policy, Feb. 20, 2013)
Forget about the “war on terror.” The next few decades will be dominated by the bitter divide within Islam itself.

What George W. Bush Did Right (Foreign Policy, Feb. 14, 2013)
The 43rd president of the United States did a great thing for humankind – but most Americans have no idea.

What I Learned from Gérard Depardieu (Foreign Policy, January 16, 2013)

Heroes of Retreat, Revisited (Foreign Policy, November 30, 2012)
We love to celebrate heroic crusaders for human rights. But what about the dictator who decides to surrender his powers?

The Corruption Pandemic (Foreign Policy, Nov. 8, 2012)
Why corruption is set to become one of the defining political issues of the 21st century.

In Praise of Apathy (Foreign Policy, October 24, 2012).
It’s time to stop deriding the Americans who refuse to vote. They’re trying to tell us something.

Islamist Déjà Vu: The Lessons of 1979 (The New York Review of Books, Sept. 13, 2012)

The Salafi Moment (Foreign Policy, Sept. 12, 2012)
As the death of a U.S. ambassador in Libya demonstrates, the ultraconservative Salafi movement is pushing to the forefront in the politics of the Middle East. The West should be careful how it reacts.

Plague of Thugs (Foreign Policy, July 18, 2012)
Why Mideast dictators use hoodlums to suppress dissent.

Burmese Days (The New York Review of Books, July 12, 2012)

The Sudanese Stand Up (Foreign Policy, June 27, 2012)

Hugo Chávez Gets a Twitter Account (The National Interest, May-June 2011).

Burning for the Cause (Foreign Policy, November 17, 2011)
From Tunisia to Tibet, self-immolation is now — tragically — back in vogue as a dramatic means of protest. But does it really work?

Predators and Robots at War (The New York Review of Books, August 3, 2011)

Japan’s Rebound (Foreign Affairs, March 19, 2011)

Remember Those Private Security Contractors? (Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, July 8, 2011)

Guerillas in the Mist (The Washington Monthly, Jan./Feb. 2011)
Peter Bergen blows away the political fog surrounding our war against al-Qaeda.

North Korea’s New Prince (The New York Review of Books, October 1, 2010)

The Tired Terrorist (The New York Review of Books, December 23, 2010)

Unveiling Hidden China (The New York Review of Books, Dec. 9, 2010)

North Korea: The Crisis of Faith (The New York Review of Books, July 15, 2010)

Bury the Graveyard (Foreign Policy, July 26, 2010)
If you want to figure out a way forward for Afghanistan, fake history is not the place to start.

Naval Gazing in Asia (Foreign Policy, May 18, 2010)
One reason why it’s probably too early to declare the end of the U.S.-Japan alliance: China.

Don’t Believe the Shanghype (Foreign Policy, May 3, 2010)
No question about it: Shanghai, proud home of the 2010 World Expo, is one of the world’s coolest cities. But it turns out that the “Shanghai Model” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

Multiple Personality Disorder in Pyongyang (Foreign Policy, April 29, 2010)

The Conjuror [on Robert Walser] (The New York Review of Books, Feb. 11, 2010)

The Hermit Kingdom (Foreign Policy, November/December 2009)
An unchanging, irrational Stalinist dictatorship? Not so much.

Who Brought Down the Berlin Wall? (Foreign Policy, November 6, 2009)
Reagan? Economics? The CIA? Why the usual suspects get too much credit. Part of an FP series, 20 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Decline of the Dollar (Foreign Policy, October 16, 2009)
Don’t believe everything you read on the Drudge Report. Well into the next few decades, the global economy will still be all about the benjamins.

Pixar Genius (The New York Review of Books, October 8, 2009)

Headless in Tokyo (Foreign Policy, Feb. 27, 2009)
Sure, Aso is atrocious. But so were his predecessors. Here’s why Japan’s politicians are so bad.

The Russians Are Coming? (The New York Review of Books, February 12, 2009)

An Asian Star is Born [on Ian Buruma] (The New York Review of Books, December 18, 2008)

The Other North Korea (The New York Review of Books, August 14, 2008)

Armies of the Enlightened (Newsweek, March 1, 2008)
Throughout Asia, Buddhism is growing fast, playing an increasingly political – and, in some spots, militant – role.

The New Food Capital of the World (Newsweek, Feb. 2, 2008)

The Amazing Wanderer [on Colin Thubron] (The New York Review of Books, Dec. 20, 2007)

The Modernizing Mob (Newsweek, Dec. 8, 2007)
Like smart businesses everywhere, Japan’s infamous underworld gangs are reinventing themselves to cope with increasingly global competition.

Why Apple Isn’t Japanese (Newsweek, December 1, 2007)
Once a technology leader, Japan is now struggling to find its place in the digital age.

Ice Capades [on Vladimir Sorokin] (The New York Review of Books, September 27, 2007)

All About Us (The Washington Monthly, July/August 2007)
We don’t really need to plunge into the arcana of imperial Rome to appreciate what America’s doing wrong. But it’s fun watching Cullen Murphy try.

Iraq’s Young Blood (Newsweek, January 21, 2007)

On Duty at the Alamo (Newsweek, October 29, 2006)

Gods of the Mall [on Haruki Murakami] (The New York Review of Books, March 1, 2007)

What About the Iraqis? (The New York Review of Books, Jan. 11, 2007)

Why They Do It (The New York Review of Books, Sept. 22, 2005)

In the Imperial Weeds (The Washington Monthly, Sept. 2005)
In his travels with special forces on the frontier of America’s empire, Robert Kaplan captures the gritty realities but not the paradoxes.

Iraqi Vice (Newsweek, Dec. 21, 2003)

With the Ghost Squad (Newsweek, November 16, 2003)

The Real Sufism (Newsweek, Sept. 11, 2003)

Window on Russia (The New York Review of Books, May 29, 2003)

Letter from Moscow (The New Criterion, May 1997)