James Fallows

James Fallows on the draft

Six months after the last American troops left Saigon, Washington Monthly contributing editor James Fallows revisited his experience with the draft as a Harvard undergraduate for an essay on how the Vietnam War had deepened Americas class divide. Fallows argued that while privileged young men like him believed at the time that they were fighting… Read more »

What Xiao Bush Got Right

f the election were only about China policy, the choice would be easy: Reelect George W. Bush. An administration that has damaged U.S. interests in nearly every other part of the world has done a surprisingly good job in dealing with China. At a private dinner in Beijing just before the Olympics opened, the first… Read more »

America’s Warlords

One surprising implication of Dana Priest’s The Mission is that even in the 1990s the foundations of empire were “harder” than they seemed. This is a loosely structured but fascinating and important book. While it draws few conclusions of its own, it provides vivid evidence about the contradictory effects of America’s unmatched military power. On… Read more »


The problem the Monthly‘s getting at is not confined to news stories with loaded lead-ins. (“Dogged by criticism of his role in the Lewinsky case, President Clinton today raised a man from the dead with the slightest touch of his hand.”) It’s just as common, and has an even longer history, in the portentous-sounding but… Read more »