In Briefs

Succinct rundowns on the world’s most important developments, produced by CFR’s scholars and editorial team. 

In Brief Filters and Cards

Philippines
The Philippines’ High-Stakes Election: What to Know
The Philippines’ upcoming presidential election is likely to bring to power Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the son of a longtime dictator, and could spell the end of democracy in the country.
France
Macron vs. Le Pen: What’s at Stake in the French Election?
Even if French President Emmanuel Macron is able to fend off the challenge from his far-right opponent, Marine Le Pen, he could struggle to form an effective government.
Hungary
Does Orban’s Victory in Hungary Change the EU’s Calculus on Russia?
Prime Minister Viktor Orban won a fourth term in elections where he enjoyed unfair advantages, presenting a thorny challenge for European unity on Russia and the rule of law.
Ukraine
How Bad Is Ukraine’s Humanitarian Crisis?
Russia’s assault on Ukraine could create as many as seven million refugees. Experts say the war could soon become Europe’s largest humanitarian crisis since the 1990s.
United Kingdom
Queen Elizabeth II Is the Monarch of Fifteen Countries. What Does That Mean?
Queen Elizabeth II is the monarch of fourteen countries in addition to the United Kingdom. Barbados’s transition to a republic has revived debate over the future of the Crown.
Japan
Japan Has Weathered COVID-19 Better Than Many, but Problems Persist
Two years into the pandemic, Japan has proven more effective than the United States and European countries at managing outbreaks. Still, the Japanese public has criticized government efforts, and two prime ministers have stepped down. 
Europe and Eurasia
Russia Is Censoring News on the War in Ukraine. Foreign Media Are Trying to Get Around That.
A Kremlin crackdown on independent media is walling off Russians from the truth about the country’s widely condemned invasion of Ukraine, but Western-funded media outlets are ramping up efforts to circumvent censors.
Brazil
Deforestation of Brazil’s Amazon Has Reached a Record High. What’s Being Done?
Scientists say the rain forest is approaching a critical tipping point at which the damage is irreversible.
East Africa
East Africa’s Growing Food Crisis: What to Know
Conflicts in Ethiopia and Ukraine are exacerbating food scarcity in a region where millions of people already suffer from severe hunger.
Europe and Eurasia
Could Nuclear Power Cut Europe’s Dependence on Russian Energy?
The war in Ukraine has set off a rush in Europe to find alternatives to Russian oil and gas. Some are calling for an expansion of nuclear power.
Middle East and North Africa
The Ukraine Crisis Could Sideline the Iran Nuclear Deal
Iran has officially supported Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but new complications in talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal signal differences between Moscow and Tehran.
South Korea
How South Korea’s Foreign Policy Could Change Under the New President
President-Elect Yoon Suk-yeol has pledged to strengthen ties with the United States and take a more hard-line approach toward China and North Korea than his predecessor.
Middle East and North Africa
How Israel’s Pegasus Spyware Stoked the Surveillance Debate
Israel reportedly used NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware as a diplomatic bargaining chip, and its misuse by many governments has intensified the bigger debate about surveillance technology.
South Korea
South Korea’s Presidential Election: What to Know
The vote for South Korea’s next president is taking place in a fractious political environment and is likely to bring a foreign policy neophyte to power.
Europe and Eurasia
Where Turkey Stands on the Russia-Ukraine War
Russia’s outsize impact on Turkish interests means Ankara is sticking to a middle ground on the war in Ukraine.