Josef Joffe

Distinguished Visiting Fellow
Biography: 

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 Limited Partnership: Europe, the United States and the Burdens of Alliance and The Future of International Politics: The Great Powers (1998) and coauthor of Eroding Empire: Western Relations with Eastern Europe. His most recent book is Über-Power: The Imperial Temptation in America (W.W. Norton). In 2013, Norton will publish At the Cassandra Crossing: The False Prophecies of American Decline.

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

Back to the Drachma

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Tuesday, May 31, 2011

If Greece doesn't get another rescue package, it will be in default by mid-July.

Analysis and Commentary

Back to the Drachma

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal Europe
Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Greece faces default no matter what it does, but only abandoning the euro would give it a chance at growth...

Analysis and Commentary

The Problem With Obama’s Middle East Speech

by Josef Joffevia New Republic
Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Obama sounds not one uncertain trumpet, but too many of them. So why would anybody listen? Diffidence does not deliver...

The Problem With Obama’s Middle East Speech

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Who is the forty-fourth president of the United States? After two-and-a-half years, we should have a pretty good idea. But we still don’t. Barack Obama remains a canvas for the mind—a wondrous, vexing projection surface.

Analysis and Commentary

The Arab Spring and The Palestine Distraction

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal
Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Arab peoples aren't obsessed with anti-Americanism and anti-Zionism. It's their rulers who are...

The Arab Spring and the Palestine Distraction

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Tuesday, April 26, 2011

In politics, shoddy theories never die. In the Middle East, one of the oldest is that Palestine is the "core" regional issue. This zombie should have been interred at the beginning of the Arab Spring, which has highlighted the real core conflict: the oppressed vs.

Is There an Obama Doctrine? Ending American Exceptionalism

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Truman had a universal doctrine — “to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation.” Everywhere. So did Kennedy, who was willing to “pay any price, bear any burden… to assure the survival and the success of liberty.” So did George W.

Analysis and Commentary

Is There an Obama Doctrine? Ending American Exceptionalism

by Josef Joffevia Room for Debate (New York Times)
Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Future historians will not accuse Mr. Obama of woolly-eyed idealism...But they [might] add that with his address on Libya he ended — or tried to end — America’s career as a power like no other...

Tyranny, the West, and the Rest

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Wednesday, March 16, 2011

When Casablanca’s corrupt police captain Louis Renault closes down Rick’s Bar Américain to please Major Strasser, he huffs: “I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!” A second later, the croupier hands him a pile of money: “Your winnings, sir.” It

Analysis and Commentary

Tyranny, the West, and the Rest

by Josef Joffevia New Republic
Saturday, March 5, 2011

Why is everyone acting so shocked about Muammar Qaddafi’s crackdown...?

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