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August 25, 2020

Nigeria
Niger Attack Demonstrates Islamic State in West Africa’s Growing Reach

The area between Niamey, Niger and Niger State, Nigeria will not be spared from jihadist groups’ attacks any longer and ISWA’s two branches, Shekau’s faction, and Ansaru will all be competing for recruits in the same areas.

Six Nigerian soldiers, in an armored truck, hold up a flag seized from Boko Haram. The flag is black, with a white circle in the middle with black Arabic writing.

September 25, 2020

Election 2020
Campaign Foreign Policy Roundup: What to Do About Iran?

Each Friday, I look at what the presidential contenders are saying about foreign policy. This week: how Donald Trump and Joe Biden say the United States should deal with Iran.

The Iranian flag being removed from a stage during the Iran nuclear deal negotiations in Vienna, Austria, on July 14, 2015.

September 25, 2020

France
Art Protests Shine Spotlight on Post-Colonial Restitution Question

Mwazulu Diyabanza, a Congolese-origin activist in France, first attracted social media attention by seeming to steal an artifact from the Quai Branly Museum in Paris to protest slavery, colonialism and the alleged theft of Africa's cultural patrimony.

The outside of the Musee du Quai Branly-Jacques Chirac in Paris. The photograph shows a black wall with white writing, spelling out the name of the institution.

September 24, 2020

Mali
France Insists on Mali's Return to Civilian Rule

French President Emmanuel Macron, in a September 22 UN General Assembly (UNGA) speech, made continued French military involvement contingent upon Mali's restoration of civilian rule.

French President Emmanuel Macron delivers at a speech at a lectern covered with roses. He stands in front of a French flag, a European Union flag, and an Iraqi flag.

September 22, 2020

Mali
Mali Update: Stand-Off

On September 21, the military junta that overthrew the Mali government of President Ibrahim Keita announced a transitional government. It is headed by retired Colonel Bah N'Daw, with junta leader Colonel Assimi Goïta as his vice president.

Malian coup leader Assimi Goita sits, in full military clothing, at a table during negotiations with ECOWAS. A red, yellow, and green flag is visible in the background.

September 21, 2020

United Nations
10 Hard Realities About the UN on Its Troubled 75th Anniversary

Broad-brush critiques of the United Nations often gloss over the distinct institutional components of the UN system and the geopolitical realities it has to work in. 

A United Nations flag is laying on a chair in the corner of a boardroom, with the New York skyline in the window and reflected on the boardroom table in the Secretariat building during the UN General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York on September 25, 2013.

September 18, 2020

Election 2020
Campaign Foreign Policy Roundup: How Americans See the World

Each Friday, I look at what the presidential challengers are saying about foreign policy. This week: Democrats and Republicans see foreign policy very differently.

Mail-in ballots sit in a box before they are verified by election officials in 2016.

September 17, 2020

South Africa
Transnational White Supremacist Militancy Thriving in South Africa

As white supremacist militancy has raced across the Western world, it has not spared South Africa from being swept up in the chaos. International white supremacist networks both strengthen and are strengthened by the Afrikaner movement in South Africa.

Three South African men hold flags of the Afrikaner Resistance Movement, including a red flag with three black sevens in the middle, and a blue, orange, and white flag pinned to a cross.

September 16, 2020

Currency Reserves
Asian Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market is Back. Bigly.

Joe Gagnon and Fred Bergsten have called the years from 2003 to 2013 the decade of manipulation, as a host of Asian countries protected their competitive position of their exporters by intervening ma…

Asian Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market is Back. Bigly.

September 16, 2020

Coronavirus
Beating COVID-19 in Africa Begins With National Labs

Although testing efforts have detected over 1.3 million cases of COVID-19 across Africa, experts agree that limited testing capacity has masked the full extent of disease spread and hampered control efforts.

A health worker, dressed in white personal protective equipment (PPE), holds up a coronavirus testing kit. The front says "biohazard, peligroso."