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January 13, 2020

Middle East and North Africa
Pompeo’s Departure Is Restoring the State Department’s Swagger

The U.S. secretary of state appears to have one foot out the door—and that’s exactly what U.S. diplomats have been waiting for.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks during a news conference in the Press Briefing Room at the State Department in Washington, U.S., January 7, 2020.

January 4, 2020

Iran
The Suleimani Assassination and U.S. Strategic Incoherence

The decision to kill Qassem Suleimani will likely force President Trump to devote additional resources to the Middle East at a time of growing concern about North Korea, Russia, and China.

Iran and U.S. Strategic Incoherence

January 3, 2020

Iran
America Must Be Ready For Iranian Retaliation

The assassination of Qassem Suleimani may have been legally justifiable but was not strategically prudent.

Iran revenge

December 18, 2019

Middle East and North Africa
The Post-American Middle East

The United States has dialed down both its presence and role in a region that it has dominated for nearly a half-century.

Post-American Middle East

December 16, 2019

Afghanistan War
Did the Government Mislead the Public About the War in Afghanistan?

America’s longest war continues not because of government deception but because successive presidents have judged the risks of withdrawal to be higher than the costs of commitment.

U.S. Army soldiers fire a howitzer artillery piece in Kandahar Province on June 12, 2011.

December 16, 2019

Global
2019 Hot Spots: The Year in Eleven Maps

CFR showcases eleven maps that help explain the events that grabbed the world’s attention in the past year.

December 12, 2019

Trade
Visualizing 2020: Trends to Watch

CFR experts spotlight some of the most important trends they will be tracking in the year ahead.  

December 4, 2019

Turkey
Trump Is Happy to Seem Weak Next to Erdogan

The benefits of their personal relationship are clear for the Turkish president. But the U.S. president has his reasons, too.

U.S. President Donald Trump greets Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan during a joint news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S., November 13, 2019.

December 3, 2019

Syria
There’s Always a Next Time to Betray the Kurds

The Kurds have no choice but to always trust the United States—and to suffer the inevitable consequences.

A Kurdish Peshmerga soldier holds a Kurdistan flag during a deployment in the area near the northern Iraqi border with Syria

October 22, 2019

Trade
The October Truce on U.S.-China Trade Failed to Address Subsidies

Concern that China's subsidies caused a flood of cheap imports was what started the U.S.-China trade war in the first place, but subsidies were not mentioned even once when President Trump announced …

U.S. China Currency