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

Doctor Mitchell’s Talking Cure

by Josef Joffevia Hoover Digest
Friday, July 2, 2010

U.S. envoys are orchestrating “proximity talks”—another proposal for Mideast peace that’s going nowhere fast. By Josef Joffe.

Analysis and Commentary

Turkey is making a play for regional power

by Josef Joffevia Financial Times
Sunday, June 6, 2010

In the Middle East nothing is ever what it seems. We have heard that the Gaza flotilla was on a humanitarian mission. Well, five of the six ships were, unloading their cargo in the Israeli port of Ashdod, but the Mavi Marmara was not, provoking an Israeli assault...

Europe’s Debt Problems and the Greek Crisis

by Josef Joffevia Advancing a Free Society
Friday, April 30, 2010

RFE/RL: Your warnings about future problems for the euro currency -- which you wrote about in the 1990s when the single European currency was still in the planning stages -- went largely unheeded by European policymakers.

Analysis and Commentary

Dr. Mitchell's Mideast Talking Cure

by Josef Joffevia Wall Street Journal
Thursday, March 11, 2010

What are the odds of success on the most recent "breakthrough" in the Middle East peace process? . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Israel pulled off a brilliant blunder in Dubai

by Josef Joffevia Daily Star (Lebanon)
Friday, March 5, 2010

The Dubai operation looks like a brilliant bungle. . . .

It’s Declinin’ Time Again

by Josef Joffevia Hoover Digest
Thursday, January 14, 2010

The doomsayers are back. Regardless of what they say, the United States remains first on any scale of power that matters—economic, military, diplomatic, or cultural. By Josef Joffe.

Analysis and Commentary

The God Gap

by Josef Joffevia American Interest
Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Few differences between Europe and the United States have proven as enduring as the “religion gap.” . . .

Analysis and Commentary

The Wall and the End of History

by Josef Joffevia Newsweek
Monday, November 16, 2009

More than just communism ended in 1989; 2,000 years of bloodshed came to a close. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Life in Walltown, Germany

by Josef Joffevia Washington Post
Sunday, November 1, 2009

Imagine waking up one fine Sunday morning to learn that they are laying down barbed wire in Washington...

Analysis and Commentary

The Age of Nice, or Politics as Psychiatry

by Josef Joffevia Commentary
Thursday, October 1, 2009

Will Obama's administration end up as a remake of Jimmy Carter’s?...