Charles Krauthammer, 1950-2018

A life well lived.

Charles Krauthammer made people understand their own thoughts. It was Charles who collated the various strands of Ronald Reagan’s foreign policy and codified them as the Reagan Doctrine in a Time Magazine essay in 1985. He did the same with the Bush Doctrine 16 years later—and his codification played a role in how Bush himself came to formulate his approach to the world following 9/11. And in 2009, Charles codified the Obama Doctrine as well, although not by that name, in a speech he turned into one of the great articles of our time, “Decline Is a Choice.” I was there when he delivered that speech and rushed up to him to ask that he allow me to publish it in COMMENTARY, but I was too late; he had already promised it to The Weekly Standard.

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Charles Krauthammer, 1950-2018

Must-Reads from Magazine

The Merkel Catastrophe

She has already cemented her legacy.

Angela Merkel on Monday downed what she no doubt viewed as a poisoned chalice. To keep her power and her grand coalition, the German chancellor agreed finally to stanch the flow of migrants by setting up camps at the border and turning away those who had already applied for asylum in other European countries. The concession comes three years after Merkel flung open the gates to more than a million newcomers from the Middle East and Africa. For much of that time, she refused to put a cap on the number Germany would accept.

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The Theater of North Korean Denuclearization

It's not cheating if there is no deal.

It wasn’t all that long ago that we were all on the same page when it came to North Korea. Time was not on our side, the thinking went. The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and, to a lesser extent, the People’s Republic of China needed only to stall until Pyongyang had developed a reliable nuclear deterrent and delivery system. It was the West that had to act fast. But after President Donald Trump’s sojourn to Singapore, the urgency of the crisis on the Korean Peninsula dissipated. The president’s most unfailing supporters suddenly adopted a wait-and-see approach; after all, this wasn’t the end of the standoff but the beginning of the end (as if calling a presidential-level summit the “beginning” of anything wasn’t an outrageous admission against interest).

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Podcast: Liberal Breakdown

Podcast: Kennedy retires and the left sets sights on ICE.

The COMMENTARY podcast breaks down the liberal psychological breakdown that followed Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement, and the activist left’s response to the Trump administration’s border crisis by advocating the abolition of ICE. Have Republicans caught a break as their opponents go over the edge?

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British Education Regulators Get Creepy With Jewish Girls

Timeless tradition, fluid standards.

Yesodey Hatorah is a Jewish girls school in London’s Stamford Hill neighborhood. Founded during World War II, Yesodey Hatorah became a voluntary-aided school a few years ago, meaning it is funded partly by the state and partly by a religious foundation. Tony Blair attended the opening of its new building in 2005, and the school has maintained its reputation for excellence ever since. More recently, however, regulators have singled out the school for intense scrutiny and opprobrium.

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The Irrational Opposition

An unruly lot.

It wasn’t that long ago Democrats had the Tea Party’s biggest weaknesses pegged. The GOP’s insurgent wing had developed a bad habit of prioritizing the fight over whatever the fight was supposed to achieve. And because Republicans depended on their activist wing for electoral energy, Republicans were frequently tempted into unwinnable conflicts with no face-saving way out. Well, if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, liberal activists are surely making Tea Partiers blush.

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