The Atlantic

Three Ways to Read Trump's National Security Strategy

Is it better approached as a sacred text, or examined like the scat of a shaggy, woodland beast?
Source: Joshua Roberts / Reuters

To the authors of any administration’s National Security Strategy—mandated for over 30 years now—it is a great state paper, a literary beacon by which government agencies can follow the president’s lead, a work of measured but forceful prose, whose lucidity is undeniable save by the malicious or irremediably malcontent. It is fair to say that no one who picks up these monographs without the painful experience of having labored on or near one shares that view. That is no criticism of their drafters, who are often exceptionally well-educated at advanced institutions of learning, where they have studied strategic

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic3 min read
Brexit Will Never Be Over
On Monday morning, the queen put on her crown and reading glasses to deliver an 11-page speech from the throne in the House of Lords. Scenes do not get more British than this: Horse Guards clopping down the avenues; diamonds glinting in the TV lights
The Atlantic3 min read
Jojo Rabbit Is a Fraught Tonal Experiment
Taika Waititi tries to balance zany comedy and grim realism in his new coming-of-age film set in Nazi Germany. He doesn’t quite succeed.
The Atlantic5 min read
A Warning From a Doctor Who Has Done Thousands of Steroid Injections for Arthritis
After giving birth to a baby, a young woman told her nurses at Boston Medical Center that she was having pain in her hip. That happens sometimes after births, says Ali Guermazi, one of the doctors involved. As he recounts the case from a few years ag