Daniel Pipes is an American historian and president of the Middle East Forum. His writing focuses on Islamism, the Middle East, and U.S. foreign policy. His archive is at www.DanielPipes.org
Grégoire Canlorbe: Do you expect the George Floyd protests to leave, in the American collective memory, a mark comparable to the September 11 attacks and the Vietnam War?
Daniel Pipes: The great question is: Will the current lurch to the left be temporary or permanent? I worry it is permanent because liberals are capitulating to progressives as never before. Will that trend continue or end? It is hard to forecast when very much in the moment.
Grégoire Canlorbe: Donald Trump’s foreign policy is often praised as dismissing nation-building in favor of short-term intervention, economic asphyxiation, and striking a deal with US enemies. How do you assess Trump’s approach? Do you subscribe to John Bolton’s criticism?
Daniel Pipes: Trump came to office with minimal knowledge of the outside world, just impressions and emotions. He also lacked a philosophy or a network. The result has been haphazard. Bolton saw this from close-up and was understandably appalled. Fortunately, some of Trump’s instincts are solid, for example, as concerns China, Iran, Israel, and Venezuela, and he does not get intimidated by the Establishment consensus. So far, anyway, no catastrophe.