Where is US foreign policy headed? Virtually all thinkers about foreign policy today are proposing a return to something old. No one likes armed missionaries: A review of The Crisis of American Foreign Policy: Wilsonianism in the Twenty-First Century by G. John Ikenberry, Thomas J. Knock, Anne-Marie Slaughter and Tony Smith; and The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century by George Friedman. Matt Bai on how Afghanistan might be Vietnam — and Obama the real Kennedy. From The National, the commitment to denying terrorists "safe haven" anywhere on Earth, Matthew Yglesias writes, will spell disaster in Afghanistan and beyond; moderate Islamists have remained committed to democracy, Marc Lynch writes, but attempts to frustrate their participation can only end badly; and eight years after the invasion of Afghanistan, Spencer Ackerman writes, America’s "right war" still needs a strategy. From NYRB, if Iraqi national forces fail to impose their control, an absence of political leadership could thus coincide with a collapse in security. From World Affairs, now is surely a moment to take a closer look at the American republic’s Hebrew and Christian origins, and not only because eruptions in the third Abrahamic religion, Islam, have given us a new reason to revisit our own. Back from war, but not really home: A sense of dislocation has been shared by veterans returning from war since Homer conjured Odysseus’ inauspicious return some 2,800 years ago. Until political leaders reject the rhetoric of evil as a justification for war, war itself is unlikely to disappear. A look at how history handed George W. Bush greatness on a platter, but he kicked it aside.

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