Thursday Mar 23, 2023

The Iraq War and the Limits of American Power

The 20th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq has prompted a wave of reflection on the war: how and why it began, where it went wrong, and how it continues to haunt the Middle East and burden American leadership.

In a recent essay in Foreign Affairs, “What the Neocons Got Wrong,” Max Boot does some of this painful reflection. In 2003, Boot was a prominent neoconservative voice making the case for war. Today, Boot is the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Senior Fellow for National Security Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and the author of several books, including The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam and The Corrosion of Conservatism: Why I Left the Right

In a conversation with Foreign Affairs Executive Editor Justin Vogt, he looks back with regret at the flawed assumptions that shaped his thinking—and considers the troubling lessons for American foreign policy today.

You can find transcripts and more episodes of The Foreign Affairs Interview at

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