Claire Berlinski

Writer, Researcher, and Journalist


Claire Berlinski

Novelist, essayist, journalist, historian, travel writer, biographer, critic.



La Comédie humaine: Introduction

I was in Paris for part of the Carter Administration. Not all of it: I’d watched the Iranian Revolution and then the hostage crisis on TV in my parents’ bedroom near Seattle, but we were in Paris by the time Carter tried to rescue the hostages. I was eleven. When Mitterrand thrashed Chirac in 1988, I was in Paris again.

Turkish Delight: A Sour Delicacy

Inever planned to live in Istanbul. Like so many things in my life, it just wound up that way. From my window I see massive and glittering cruise ships setting sail on the Golden Horn, sunrise over the Topkapı Palace, glowing like fire, tankers coming down from Odessa, pleasure craft coming up from the Sea of Marmara.
World Affairs Daily Link to Story

Communism’s Defeat, 20 Years Later

Several weeks ago, the British press, led by the Times of London, reported “explosive” evidence from Soviet archives indicating that Margaret Thatcher—of all people! had tried to keep the Berlin Wall from falling. Indeed, said the paper, she secretly urged Mikhail Gorbachev to “do what he could to stop it.”.
City Journal Link to Story

Jupiter and Rambo

“Grotesque speculations” are crippling France when we need it most. Most Americans have not heard the name Benalla, and if they have, they haven’t a clue why it should concern them. How could they? The White House is a region of spacetime exerting such a strong pull on our attention that no one can escape; a scandal in France that sounds inscrutable and insignificant will not be the exception to the rule, even if it is neither.
The American Interest Link to Story

Dominican Republic or Bust

The key to understanding the Dominican Republic is to imagine a country where Jennifer Lopez is the president, Ricky Martin the secretary of the interior, Christina Aguilera the secretary of state, and their backup singers the Supreme Court. An election was taking place while I was in Santo Domingo, visiting my family.

Opinion Arm in Arm, Trump and Putin Are Pulling Europe Apart. The Consequences Will Be Catastrophic


Assailing NATO, Trump joins Kremlin in war on the democratic world order

The United States has inexplicably undermined, if not destroyed, its relationship with Germany, the foundational relationship of the postwar world order and the reason the world has endured no great-power war since 1945. It did so not because of a great friction of strategic interests, but because the President attempted publicly to shake down the chancellor like a real estate contractor in New Jersey.
New York Daily News Link to Story

On the Eve of the NATO Summit, Trump Has Pissed Away the Pax Americana

Modern Europe—liberal, democratic Europe—is a creation of the United States. This story was once known to every American, but as the generation responsible for this achievement dies, it seems this knowledge is no longer passed down. The United States built the modern order upon an architecture of specific institutions: the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the International Court of Justice.
The Daily Beast Link to Story

How the French Mourn

When countries refuse to look clearly at the past, they are like neurotics controlled by compulsions they cannot understand. On March 23, an ISIS-affiliated terrorist stormed a supermarket in the small French town of Trèbes, shot two people dead, and took others hostage as human shields. After security forces had negotiated the release of all but one of his captives, a senior gendarme, Arnaud Beltrame, volunteered to take her place.
The American Interest Link to Story

Trump, une tragédie américaine

Début septembre, on a pu voir dans le Forum du commandant en chef, une émission de la chaîne NBC, un spectacle étrange. Et quand on lui a demandé comment il comptait s’y prendre, Trump a répondu qu’il fallait « laisser quelques groupes s’emparer du secteur… vous savez, avant ça s’appelait la paix des vainqueurs.

The Architectural Sacking of Paris

In 2014, Anne Hidalgo, protégée of Paris’s socialist mayor Bertrand Delanoë, ran for his office, giving rise to her nickname, La Dauphine—“the heiress.”. Her conservative rival, Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, became known as “the harpist,” after an unfortunate photo shoot in Paris Match, in which she posed gravid on a forest floor, like a woodland nymph, next to a harp twice her size.
City Journal Link to Story

The Warlock Hunt

The #MeToo moment has now morphed into a moral panic that poses as much danger to women as it does to men. #Metoo, of course. Women are not going nuts for no reason. We’re fed up with feeling prickles down our spine as we walk alone on dimly lit streets. Fed up with thinking, “If he feels entitled to send me that message, what might he feel entitled to do to if he knew where I lived?”.
The American Interest Link to Story


Claire Berlinski

I'm an American novelist, freelance journalist, travel writer, biographer, historian, editor and consultant who lives amid a menagerie of adopted stray animals in Paris. I'm the author of There is No Alternative: Why Margaret Thatcher Matters. I'm also the author of Menace in Europe: Why the Continent's crisis is America's, Too, and two spy novels: Loose Lips and Lion Eyes. I'm a contributing editor of City Journal, a fellow of the Manhattan Institute, a senior fellow for Turkey of the American Foreign Policy Council, and an editor and regular contributor at

I'm now working on a book called Brave Old World: Europe Revisited, a sequel to my first book about Europe, which was published ten years ago. This time, my reporting will be entirely funded by my readers: I'd be ever so grateful for your help.



  • Writing novels
  • Writing essays
  • Journalism
  • Travel writing
  • Historical research
  • Writing biographies
  • Criticism