Josef Joffe

Distinguished Visiting Fellow

Josef Joffe, a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, is publisher/editor of the German weekly Die Zeit.

His areas of interest are US foreign policy, international security policy, European-American relations, Europe and Germany, and the Middle East.

His essays and reviews have appeared in the New York Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, Commentary, New York Times Magazine, New Republic, Weekly Standard, Newsweek, Time, and Prospect (London).

His second career has been in academia. A professor of political science (by courtesy) at Stanford, he is also a senior fellow at Stanford's Freeman-Spogli Institute for International Studies. In 1990–91, he taught at Harvard, where he remains affiliated with the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies. He was a professorial lecturer at Johns Hopkins (School of Advanced International Studies) in 1982–84. He has also taught at the University of Munich and the Salzburg Seminar.

His scholarly work has appeared in Foreign Affairs, National Interest, International Security, and Foreign Policy. He is the author of The Myth of America's Decline: Politics, Economics, and a Half Century of False Prophecies (Liveright, 2013), Über-Power: The Imperial Temptation in America (W.W. Norton, 2006), The Limited Partnership: Europe, the United States and the Burdens of Alliance (Ballinger Pub Co, 1997) and coauthor of Eroding Empire: Western Relations with Eastern Europe (Brookings Institution Press, 1987). 

Joffe serves on the boards of the American Academy, Berlin; Aspen Institute, Berlin; Leo Baeck Institute, New York; and Ben Gurion University, Israel. He is chairman of the Abraham Geiger College, Berlin.

In 2005, he founded the American Interest (Washington, DC) with Zibigniew Brzezinski, Eliot Cohen, and Francis Fukuyama. He is also a board member at International Security, Harvard University, and Internationale Politik, Berlin.

Among his awards are honorary doctoral degrees from Swarthmore College in 2002 and Lewis and Clark College in 2005; the Theodor Wolff Prize (journalism) and Ludwig Börne Prize (essays/literature), Germany; the Scopus Award of the Hebrew University, Jerusalem; and the Federal Order of Merit, Germany.

Raised in Berlin, he obtained his PhD degree in government from Harvard.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

Strategika: What Do The Jihadists Want?

by Max Boot, Josef Joffe, Peter R. Mansoorvia Strategika
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Analysis and Commentary

A Festival of Hypocrisy

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal Europe
Thursday, July 11, 2013

The saga of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, who has cracked open a leak as wide as the Titanic's, should make for a nice sequel to the "The Terminal." In that Spielberg movie, Tom Hanks—suddenly a man without country—is marooned at JFK airport.

Terence White Collection, OAC 2002C71. Hoover Institution Archives.
Featured Commentary

Jihadi Terrorism’s Moving Targets

by Josef Joffevia Strategika
Monday, July 1, 2013
Analysis and Commentary

Two Great Powers, No Real Leadership

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal Europe
Monday, June 17, 2013

When U.S. President Barack Obama pays his respects to German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin this week, he will encounter a Germany that no sitting American president has encountered in many decades. No, not the "Fourth Reich" of punditry's fevered imagination.

Analysis and Commentary

The German Judge vs. Genesis 17:10

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal Europe
Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Cologne court rules that male circumcision is 'bodily harm.' Blame God...

Analysis and Commentary

Mrs. Merkel's Germany Is Europe's One Musketeer

by Josef Joffevia Guardian (UK)
Thursday, June 21, 2012

The German chancellor's critics should stop accusing her of Teutonic arrogance. Why should she take on everyone's debts?...

Analysis and Commentary

I come to praise Ms Merkel not to bury her

by Josef Joffevia Financial Times
Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Listening to Anglo-American über-Keynesians a first-time visitor to the eurozone might be tempted to pose three questions, in rising order of bemusement...

Analysis and Commentary

The European Revolt Against Reality

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal
Thursday, May 10, 2012

What will it be: "Mitterrand for All" or "Schröder Does Europe"?...

Analysis and Commentary

Hollande’s dangerous dream of exceptionalism

by Josef Joffevia Financial Times
Friday, May 4, 2012

France must understand that it is as much in need of reform as the rest of Europe...

Analysis and Commentary

The Mendacity of Günter Grass

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal
Tuesday, April 17, 2012

In the Nobel literature laureate's imagination, Israel threatens the globe and cows Germans into shamed silence...