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September 13, 2018

Sub-Saharan Africa
The Risks of Reducing U.S. Special Operations in Africa

The Pentagon plans to withdraw its special operations forces in Africa, but major cutbacks could threaten recent efforts to counter terrorism threats across the region.

Chadian soldiers take a break during Operation Flintlock, U.S.-led military exercises, in Diffa, Niger.

April 16, 2018

Syrian Civil War
Can Syria’s Chemical Weapons Be Stopped?

The United States should follow targeted strikes in Syria with intensified global efforts to nullify the regime’s chemical weapons capabilities.

A firefighter works inside the destroyed Scientific Research Center in Damascus.

April 5, 2018

Europe and Eurasia
Armenia’s Tricky EU-Russia Balancing Act

Armenia’s partnership agreement with the EU signals its shift toward Europe amid growing tensions between Russia and the West.

Armenian president participates in EU press conference

March 15, 2018

Russia
Are Cold War Spy-Craft Norms Fading?

The poisoning of former double agent Sergei V. Skripal in the UK indicates that Russia may have abandoned some unspoken rules of espionage. CIA veteran Jack Devine examines the history and current state of spy-craft.

UK Skripal Poisoning Crime Scene

February 16, 2018

North Korea
Avoiding War With North Korea

The U.S. military is prepared for a number of contingencies with regard to North Korea, but the best path forward is diplomacy aimed at denuclearization.

KCNA

February 6, 2018

Olympics
The Mixed Record of Sports Diplomacy

While sports may temporarily transcend divisions in society, events like the Olympics rarely serve to advance countries’ diplomatic aims.

East Germany was a perennial powerhouse at winter games, including the 1988 Calgary games where it won gold and bronze in the women’s 1000 meters Speedskating event.

December 11, 2017

Poland
What’s Next for Poland’s Democratic Decline?

Once a role model for democracy, Poland has rapidly witnessed a series of illiberal moves that threaten the rule of law and its future within the European Union, says Agata Fijalkowski.

Protesters carry Polish flags during a rally, organized by nationalist groups, to mark the anniversary of Polish independence.

November 17, 2017

Lebanon
Saudi Arabia’s Lebanon Gambit

Saudi Arabia pressed Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri to resign to try to weaken Iran-backed Hezbollah in Lebanon. The path to resolving the crisis could run through Yemen.

King Salman meets with Saad Hariri in Riyadh.

April 7, 2017

Syria
Will Syria Yield to the Chemical Weapons Ban?

Syria’s breach of its treaty obligations has led to broad international support for U.S. military action, says CFR’s Lori Esposito Murray.

December 1, 2016

Italy
Europe Braces For Italy’s Referendum

Italy’s vote on constitutional reforms, which may determine whether the country can escape its economic doldrums and rescue its ailing banking system, could have consequences for all of Europe, says …