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October 11, 2019

Election 2020
Election 2020 Foreign Policy Roundup: Syrian Kurds, the NBA, and LGBTQ Rights

The big foreign policy news this week was President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops who have been working with Syrian Kurds, effectively greenlighting Turkey’s subsequent invasion of …

People flee Turkish air strikes in Ras al Ain along the northern Syrian border.

October 11, 2019

Nigeria
Borno Governor Launches State-Level Initiatives to Fight Boko Haram

Faced with a resurgent Boko Haram and an ineffectual federal government, Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno state appears to be readying a multi-pronged strategy of his own. According to press reports, he is recruiting ten thousand hunters “with voodoo powers and hunting skills” to fight Boko Haram.

Local hunters armed with locally made guns are seen on a pick up truck

October 9, 2019

India
Xi Jinping to India: Mamallapuram Edition

The Indian government announced today that Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit India later this week for an “informal summit” with Prime Minister Narendra Modi beginning October 11. The leader-le…

Modi and Xi in China

October 8, 2019

Taiwan
Could Taiwan’s Commercial Banks Cover the Lifers' Hedging Need? (Part 4)

Who is on the other side of the massive ($250 billion) hedging need of Taiwan's life insurance industry? The local banking system covers at most a quarter of the life insurers hedging need, and forei…

fig 3

October 8, 2019

Sub-Saharan Africa
A New Challenge to Confront: Rising Illicit Drug Use

New research suggests that African policymakers focused on the future have yet another pressing issue to add to their already full plate: A study released on the margins of the UN General Assembly meeting and funded by the European Union indicates that Africa will be the site of the world’s largest increase in illegal drug use over the next few decades.

A recovering drug addict receives his dose of methadone at a Medication Assisted Therapy clinic run by Doctors Without Borders (MSF) at Karuri Level 4 hospital in Kiambu, Kenya October 3, 2019.

October 7, 2019

Global Governance
Remembering the Washington Conference That Brought the World Standard Time

The 1884 International Meridian Conference gave the world standard time and constituted a seminal moment in the history of globalization. 

A line marks the 'Prime Meridian of the World' at Longitude 0 degrees at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich.

October 3, 2019

Food and Water Security
Down the Hunger Spiral: Pathways to the Disintegration of the Global Food System

For a precarious global agricultural system with powerful feedback loops, business as usual means widespread hunger and embedded systemic risk.

A drought-stricken field in Drenje, Croatia.

October 3, 2019

Somalia
Diplomatic Progress in Somalia

The re-opening of the U.S. Embassy in Mogadishu, Somalia, is welcome news to many who have worked on U.S. policy issues in the Horn of Africa for decades. It represents not just a positive step in strengthening bilateral relations, but also a victory over those who would prioritize risk-aversion  ahead of the actual work of diplomacy

Italian and Somali security forces are seen near armored vehicles at the scene of an attack on an Italian military convoy in Mogadishu, Somalia September 30, 2019

September 30, 2019

United States
Election 2020: Steve Bullock, Democratic Presidential Candidate

Can one of the last candidates to enter the 2020 race be the last one standing? Steve Bullock certainly hopes so. The Montana governor waited until after twenty-one other Democrats had declared for t…

Steve Bullock

September 30, 2019

Cybersecurity
The First Ever Global Meeting on Cyber Norms Holds Promise, But Broader Challenges Remain

Earlier this month, the United Nations held the first ever global meeting on peace and stability in cyberspace. While there is little reason to expect states to reach a final agreement on major issue…

The United Nations building is pictured in New York, New York, U.S., September 24, 2018.