Explainers

  • The alliance is bringing its twenty-year mission in Afghanistan to a close in 2021, as it looks to bolster its military deterrent in Europe and provide security assistance in the Middle East and Horn of Africa.
  • Tens of thousands of unaccompanied children have been arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border each year, sparking debate over how to respond. A recent rise in their numbers has challenged the Biden administration.
  • Modern vice presidents can trace much of their political influence to the broad reforms that Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale made to the second-highest elected office in the late 1970s.
  • International efforts, such as the Paris Agreement, aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But experts say countries aren’t doing enough to limit dangerous global warming.
  • A major fuel pipeline from Canada to the United States could be shut down, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris and Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) meet virtually to discuss migration concerns, and the European Union and India are expected to revive trade talks.
  • Beverly Gage, Christopher Nichols, and Andrew Preston sit down with James M. Lindsay to discuss what grand strategy means and its role in U.S. history. Beverly Gage is professor of twentieth century American history and director of the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy at Yale University. Christopher Nichols is director of the Center for the Humanities and the Sandy and Elva Sanders Eminent professor in the Honors College at Oregon State University. Andrew Preston is professor of American history at the University of Cambridge, where he is a fellow of Clare College.
  • India struggles with the world’s largest COVID-19 surge, Somalia’s president addresses Parliament after dropping a bid to extend his term, and the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan gets underway ten years after the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
  • Tens of thousands of migrants from a region known as the Northern Triangle are arriving at the U.S. southern border. Here’s why they’re making the arduous journey.
  • Three years ago, Abiy Ahmed came to power with promises of peace. Now, jarring reports of killings and sexual violence have come out of Tigray, Ethiopia’s northernmost region. Here’s what to know about the unfolding humanitarian crisis.
  • 2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the Council on Foreign Relations. Since its inception in 1921, the Council has been guided by an unwavering set of core principles: independence, nonpartisanship, and a commitment to producing quality, policy-relevant scholarship. The CFR’s mission, to provide the analysis and context necessary to inform America’s foreign policy choices and to increase public understanding of the world and why it matters, remains as urgent today as at any time in the past century.
  • A global pandemic, elections, civil unrest, and much more. The year 2020 was like no other. Take a look back at how the Council on Foreign Relations brought together renowned experts and leaders to unpack one of the most challenging times for the United States and the world.
  • Since 1945, many regime leaders and key figures have been brought before domestic and international courts to answer to charges including genocide and crimes against humanity, amid a larger struggle to promote and enforce the rule of law worldwide.
  • Onetime allies, the United States and Iran have seen tensions escalate repeatedly in the four decades since the Islamic Revolution.
  • The Taliban insurgency remains resilient nearly two decades after U.S.-led forces toppled its regime in what led to the United States’ longest war.
  • Since 1949, U.S.-China relations have evolved from tense standoffs to a complex mix of intensifying diplomacy, growing international rivalry, and increasingly intertwined economies.