National Columns

Opinion: Trump can shut down Russia critics with one move

Washington — If President Trump wants to shut down the critics of his performance this week in Helsinki and strengthen U.S. national security, he can do so with one bold move: Announce he is moving out most U.S. forces currently stationed in Germany and sending them to Poland. The Polish ...

Opinion: Intelligence community carries on

Despite Trump’s acquiescence to Russia, our resilient intelligence community will ‘get on with it’ Aspen, Colo. — The American intelligence community has never faced a problem quite like President Trump — a commander in chief who is suspected by a growing number of Republicans and ...

Opinion: Spare me your shock at Trump

“Lawmakers in both major parties and former intelligence officials appeared shocked ...” — The Chicago Tribune “U.S. lawmakers of both political parties reacted with shock ...” — Voice of America “Some of Mr. Trump’s own advisers privately said they were shocked ...” — ...

Opinion: Our president puts America last

Washington — America’s child president had a playdate with a KGB alumnus, who surely enjoyed providing day care. It was a useful, because illuminating, event: Now we shall see how many Republicans retain a capacity for embarrassment. Jeane Kirkpatrick, a Democrat closely associated with ...

Opinion: Trump stuns by siding with Putin

Washington — President Trump was doing pretty well in Helsinki, really, laying out a modest but achievable agenda for improving U.S.-Russia relations. And then came the final question about whether Trump believed his own intelligence chiefs or Russian President Vladimir Putin — and in his ...

Opinion: What else do we have on Putin?

Washington — When President Vladimir Putin sits down at the table in Helsinki on today, he will surely have in the back of his mind some intelligence worries that have nothing to do with the U.S. president seated across from him. Putin’s elite spy world has been penetrated by U.S. ...

Opinion: If power unchecked, no one is safe

They did not have to die. That’s the bitter truth. Katie Sasser and her friend John Hall would likely still be alive if cops and prosecutors in Glynn County, Georgia, had done their jobs. But they were more interested in protecting one of their own. So Sasser and Hall were shot to death in ...

Opinion: Don’t play politics with Kavanaugh appointment

The nomination of Brett Kavanaugh for the U.S. Supreme Court is a welcome move. As readers of my column know, I am no Donald Trump fan, but in this instance, the president has done well. Kavanaugh, whom I’ve worked with in the past, is a serious jurist with one of the most impressive ...

Opinion: Friendship with Russia at what cost?

Washington — As the Helsinki summit approaches, President Trump appears to be on the verge of acquiescing to the belligerent strategy and behavior that Moscow has been pursuing for decades. The summit will be a culmination of Trump’s often-proclaimed eagerness for better relations with ...

Opinion: Tired of having to explain ourselves

For barbecuing. For selling bottled water. For napping in a dorm. For mowing a lawn. For smoking. Perhaps you recognize the list. If not, be advised that it represents a few of the slew of recent high-profile episodes in which police have been called out on black people for reasons so ...

Opinion: Is Trump correct about Mueller’s appointment?

Washington — The president, who might not be fully acquainted with the pertinent Supreme Court case law, says the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel was unconstitutional. The president’s opinion, because it is his, is prima facie evidence for the opposite conclusion. It is, ...

Opinion: A view of Trump’s zigzag diplomacy

Washington — Watching President Trump’s diplomatic maneuvers — in Singapore last month and in the runup to his meetings over the next week in Brussels and Helsinki — I wonder whether analysts have been making a mistake explaining his bargaining style in terms of the brash young ...

Opinion: Comparison to cult is wrong, likely to backfire

Bob Corker, the outgoing Republican senator from Tennessee, recently compared supporters of President Trump to members of a cult. The Washington Post quoted Corker as saying: “It’s becoming a cultish thing, isn’t it? It’s not a good place for any party to end up with a cult-like ...

Opinion: After initial grief, a bit of anger

It’s a big deal, as a journalist, to work for The New York Times, The Washington Post or The Wall Street Journal. Wielding the press badge of one of the biggest newspapers in the country is a fast-track pass onto talk shows, including ones that cover the practice of journalism. Even as just ...

Opinion: Some reflections on the Disraeli test and political slogans

Benjamin Disraeli, a 19th-century British prime minister and writer, shrewdly advised that to be a successful political leader, a man (even though it was the Victorian era, it was still a man’s game) must first know himself and then know and understand the times in which he lives. Whether ...

Opinion: Taking a closer look at socialism

Polly: He’s a socialist but he doesn’t like people. Brian: Nor do I, much. Polly: You’re a conservative. You don’t have to. — From “Getting On,” by Alan Bennett Washington — This, one of the pleasures of being a conservative, is not for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, 28. She ...

Opinion: Now I know how the Gipper felt

“I didn’t leave the Democratic Party. The party left me.’’ — Ronald Reagan Now I know how the Gipper felt. Once upon a time, you see, I thought I was a little bit conservative. Mind you, I could never side with the right on social justice matters like the treatment of LGBTQ ...

Opinion: A good democracy places principles over partisanship

There was a time in recent history when conservatives understood the dangers of an imperial presidency. I, along with most conservative commentators, railed against the overreach of the Obama administration in everything from health care to environmental policy. Even when I agreed with the ...

Opinion: Another awful Trump summit?

“There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.” — Donald Trump, June 13, 2018 “North Korea is upgrading its nuclear research center at a rapid pace, new satellite imagery analysis suggests.” — The Wall Street Journal, June 27, 2018 Washington — As the president ...

Opinion: It’s more than just a profession

This one feels different. And what does it say about this country when one has seen enough mass shootings to become a connoisseur of them? But yes, what happened last week in the newsroom of the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis does feel different. It feels too close for comfort. Part ...