Must Reads

A sortable index of the best online analyses and inquiries on foreign policy.

Reuters: Why Ukraine Spurned the EU and Embraced Russia

Author: Elizabeth Piper

"What caused the U-turn by the leadership of a country of 46 million people that occupies a strategic position between the EU and Russia? Public and private arm-twisting by Putin, including threats to Ukraine's economy and Yanukovich's political future, played a significant part. But the unwillingness of the EU and International Monetary Fund to be flexible in their demands of Ukraine also had an effect, making them less attractive partners."

See more in Ukraine; Politics and Strategy

Amnesty International: "Treat Us Like We Are Human": Migrant Workers in Qatar

"Migrant workers in Qatar face a range of abuses at the hands of their employers. In some of the cases investigated by Amnesty International, these abuses amount to forced labour and human trafficking. Some arrive to find that the nature of the work, their salaries, hours of work or conditions are very different to those they had been promised. Many migrant workers find their employers delay their pay or stop paying them at all."

See more in Qatar; Human Rights

NYT: Samsung: Uneasy in the Lead

Authors: Eric Pfanner and Brian X. Chen

"Samsung's sales are equal to about one-quarter of South Korea's economic output. Samsung Electronics, the flagship, posted $190 billion in sales last year—about the same sales as Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Facebook combined."

See more in South Korea; Technology and Science

FP: Will India's Next Leader Be Banned from America?

Author: John Hudson

"Pollsters say the BJP is now widely expected to win next year's general election, which would make the party's controversial prime ministerial nominee, Narendra Modi, the next leader of India. The State Department won't say whether a Prime Minister Modi would be allowed entrance to the United States, but experts say the question looms large over the U.S.-India relationship."

See more in India; Politics and Strategy

New Yorker: State of Deception

Author: Ryan Lizza

"[Keeping the phone metadata collection program] was the first in a series of decisions by Obama to institutionalize some of the most controversial national-security policies of the Bush Administration. Faced with a long list of policies to roll back…reining in the N.S.A.'s surveillance programs might have seemed like a low priority. As core members of Al Qaeda were killed, the danger shifted to terrorists who were less organized and more difficult to detect, making the use of the N.S.A.'s powerful surveillance tools even more seductive."

See more in United States; Intelligence

The Diplomat: U.S.-Japan Alliance Sparks Korean Grand Strategy Debate

Author: Robert E. Kelly

"To join a U.S.-Japanese anti-Chinese coalition would not only antagonize China, it would align Korea with its "ancient foe." Worse, the mutual U.S. alliances mean that nationalists and maximalists in Korea and Japan can make whatever outrageous claims they like about the other, yet face little geopolitical consequence. U.S. alliances are a form of "moral hazard" that ironically worsen the problem by reducing the incentives for rapprochement."

See more in Asia and Pacific; Defense and Security

FP: The Kerry Doctrine

Author: Douglas G. Brinkley

"This boldness is at the heart of the Kerry Doctrine, which involves tackling the issues most likely to make a historic difference -- that is, the world's most festering problems -- and doing so with direct, don't-sweat-the-small-stuff diplomacy. It rests on leveraging long-term, substantive relationships with fellow politicians around the world in order to employ diplomatic intervention as the first choice, not the last resort."

See more in Global; Politics and Strategy

AP: A Reporter's Quest to Find Bodies in Mali

Author: Rukmini Callimachi

Close to three dozen people in northern Mali disappeared earlier this year, killed or taken away by the country's military. The victims were caught in a backlash against Arabs and Tuaregs.

See more in Mali; Human Rights

FT: The Scandal at the Vatican Bank

Author: Rachel Sanderson

"After a decade of paedophilia scandals, the allegations of financial impropriety seemed set to unleash another storm of criticism and had to be addressed. Outside auditors as well as financial risk consultants were already coming into the Vatican but the arrest of Scarano made the case for reform unavoidable. "We cannot have any more scandal. It is so shameful," a senior member of the Vatican's financial administration said."

See more in Holy See/Vatican; Banks and Banking