Foreign Policy in Focus

Foreign Policy in Focus (FPIF) is a “think tank without walls” connecting the research and action of more than 600 scholars, advocates, and activists seeking to make the United States a more responsible global partner.

FPIF provides timely analysis of U.S. foreign policy and international affairs and recommends policy alternatives. We believe U.S. security and world stability are best advanced through a commitment to peace, justice, and environmental protection, as well as economic, political, and social rights. We advocate that diplomatic solutions, global cooperation, and grassroots participation guide foreign policy.

FPIF aims to amplify the voice of progressives and to build links with social movements in the U.S. and around the world. Through these connections, we advance and influence debate and discussion among academics, activists, policy-makers, and the general public.

Latest Work

President Obama About as Responsible for the Price of Gas as Chocolate

The price of gasoline is determined by world commodity markets, not President Obama.

Newt Gingrich and the “Madman” Theory of International Relations

According to Gingrich’s logic, North Vietnam would have been justified in attacking the United States.

Syria: The Wrong Drum to Beat

Hawks are using the death of journalists such as Marie Colvin to further the cause of military aid to Syria’s opposition.

Resuming Contact with North Korea

The resumption of contact between Washington and Pyongyang will not likely yield immediate results, but the United States can still take certain steps to improve relations now.

Iran Already Has a Strong Deterrent

What would be the benefits to Iran of developing nuclear weapons?

The Slide Toward War

If Israel or the United States starts a disastrous war with Iran, it will be because someone thought it was a good idea.

As Always, Good News About Nukes Soon Eclipsed by the Bad

Optimism about U.S. budget cuts to nukes was soon overtaken by tension over Iran’s nuclear enrichment program and a fire on a Russian nuclear sub.


A poem about Gaza asks whether there is a poem in Gaza that hasn’t been written?

Talk of Lowered Nuke Numbers Leaves Conservatives Sputtering

Is President Obama getting serious about nuclear disarmament again?

Our Man in Beijing?

For some bizarre reason, U.S. observers expect the latest Chinese leader to suddenly tear off his clothes and reveal a Captain America suit underneath.

Tunisia at a Crossroads

Are the changes in Tunisia deep and enduring, or simply cosmetic?

Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia: Real Muslims Don’t Tweet

Twitter has made it: it’s become the subject of a fatwa.

Egypt’s other revolution: Modernizing the military-industrial complex

Planners in the Egyptian military want to boost the old defense-industrial complex by cultivating new smaller scale projects that partner the Egyptian armed forces with a diverse portfolio of second- and third-tier foreign defense manufacturers.

Obama Requests Slightly Higher Aid Levels for 2013

President Obama’s new budget requests an increase in State Department funding, but simultaneously decreases funds vital for humanitarian, health, and other aid groups.

Henoko and the U.S. Military: A History of Dependence and Resistance

The presence of military bases in Japan has been a strong cause of unrest and outspoken frustation.

In an Attack on Iran, Oil Wells Will Be Spared

“If we manage to avoid this war, someone will deserve a Peace Prize, but probably not someone who already has one.”

Iran: Willing to Deal

The West’s sanctions on Iran are hurting the country’s middle class and marginalizing the country’s pragmatists. But they can neither cripple Iran’s economy nor halt its nuclear program.

Nothing “Off-base” About Ron Paul’s Estimates of U.S. Bases Overseas

Whatever one thinks of Paul’s candidacy, he has been raising legitimate and oft-ignored questions about U.S. military bases and troops abroad.

In the Aftermath of Libya: a Chance to Define “Responsibility to Protect”

Libya is not a convincing precedent for intervening in Syria by arming opposition groups.

Proactive Syrian Opposition Intent on Not Becoming Another Iraq or Libya

Nir Rosen’s reporting from Syria for alJazeera reveals the character of the opposition.