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Ethan Epstein

Ethan Epstein

Ethan Epstein is deputy opinion editor of The Washington Times. He has also written for The Weekly Standard, Politico Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Slate, and other publications. He graduated from Reed College.

Articles by Ethan Epstein

FILE - In this Wednesday, March 13, 2019 file photo, a member of the North Korea's embassy tells reporters not to take pictures of the diplomatic building in Madrid, Spain. The 10 people who allegedly raided the North Korean Embassy in Madrid last month belong to a mysterious dissident organization that styles itself as a government-in-exile dedicated to toppling the ruling Kim family dynasty in North Korea. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue, File)

Could North Korea's criminal embassies endanger the regime?

Being a diplomat for the world's most undiplomatic regime must be an odd job. North Korea's foreign service officers posted in the country's embassies abroad don't do much of the feel-good factory tours and rubber chicken dinner hobnobbery that characterize the daily lives of most countries' ambassadors. Published April 4, 2019

Gov. Gavin Newsom signs the executive order placing a moratorium on the death penalty at his Capitol office Wednesday, March 13, 2019, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli) **FILE**

California governor's death penalty moratorium: Perfectly legal, but wrong

The governor's move, therefore, feels uncomfortably undemocratic. Many families of murder victims expressed shock and outrage at the announcement as did many pundits who, whether or not they support the death penalty, felt the governor's move to be an abuse of power. But while it may strike many as fundamentally wrong, the governor's move appears to be perfectly legal. Published March 14, 2019

News of the abrupt end to the summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un stunned Asians whose countries had high stakes in the denuclearization talks. (Associated Press)

The biggest loser from the summit collapse? China

"Potential" is probably the wrong word to use. When President Trump tries to coax North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un to trade nuclear arms for investment, he rhapsodizes often about the great "potential" that he sees in North Korea. (Ever a real estate guy, the president seems particularly fond of North Korea's shoreline.) But to say someone has great "potential" is to imply they're not living up to it. That almost certainly is perceived as an insult by the North Korean regime, whose propaganda bangs on incessantly about the inherent superiority of its system. Published February 28, 2019

FILE - In this March 22, 2017 file photo, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz speaks at the Starbucks annual shareholders meeting in Seattle. For someone who has given about $150,000 to Democratic campaigns over the years, Schultz is generating tepid, or even hostile, responses within the party as he weighs a presidential bid in 2020. That's because reports have suggested he's considering running as an independent, a prospect that could draw support away from the eventual Democratic nominee and hand President Donald Trump another four years in office, many fret. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

Disagree with Howard Schultz? You're 'un-American'

Former Starbucks honcho Howard Schultz, very publicly contemplating a run for the presidency and hawking a new book, has a crisp riposte for every policy he disagrees with: "un-American." Published January 30, 2019

In this Nov. 2, 2011, file photo, a sign sits atop the Qualcomm headquarters building in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

The little-known court case that could damage U.S. national security

Nearly 25 years after the Los Angeles prosecution of O.J. Simpson, the last "Trial of the Century," another vitally important, potentially epoch-defining legal battle is being waged a couple of hundred miles to the north of Judge Lance Ito's courtroom. At stake in this case is not just the fate of a washed-up former football player, but the future of American national security. Published January 9, 2019

FILE- In this May 1, 2018, file photo, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg makes the keynote speech at F8, Facebook's developer conference in San Jose, Calif. The British Parliament has released some 250 pages worth of documents that show Facebook considered charging developers for data access. The documents show internal discussions about linking data to revenue. "There's a big question on where we get the revenue from," Zuckerberg said in one email. "Do we make it easy for devs to use our payments/ad network but not require them? Do we require them? Do we just charge a rev share directly and let devs who use them get a credit against what they owe us? It's not at all clear to me here that we have a model that will actually make us the revenue we want at scale." (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

For access to China, Saudi Arabia, U.S. firms will have to pay a steep price

In 2002, a Chinese dissident named Wang Xiaoning was arrested because of an article he posted online. Mr. Wang had called, courageously, for democratic reforms — but had done so anonymously. He was arrested only because California-based Yahoo assisted the Chinese government in determining who had posted the piece. (Users of Yahoo's Bronze Age-style email service may be shocked the company actually had this technical capability.) Mr. Wang ended up serving 10 years in prison. Published January 2, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Sentosa Island in Singapore on June 12, 2018. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

North Korea: Is the glass half full or half empty?

The Democratic Party's line on North Korea is just one of many strange inversions of the Trump era. Alongside its newfound ardor for free trade, embrace of Victorian sexual ethics, and suspicion of all things Russian, the Democrats are now the party of North Korean hawkishness. Published December 19, 2018

A man sits atop the U.S. border wall as he prepares to help other migrants climb over to San Ysidro, Calif., in order to surrender to the U.S. Border Patrol, in Playas de Tijuana, Mexico, Monday, Dec. 3, 2018. Thousands of Central American migrants who traveled with recent caravans want to seek asylum in the U.S. but face a decision between crossing illegally or waiting months, because the U.S. government only processes a limited number of those cases a day at the San Ysidro border crossing. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

Build a wall -- on Mexico's southern border

Just before Donald Trump's inauguration in 2017, a Mexican newspaper floated an interesting, if unsourced, theory: As part of the renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the Trump administration was contemplating assisting Mexico with fortifying its southern border with Guatemala. Published December 5, 2018