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July 13, 2021

Cuba
U.S.-Cuba Relations

Communist Cuba has long been a major foreign policy challenge for the United States. The bilateral relationship thawed considerably under President Obama, but many restrictions were reimposed by the …

A man shows U.S. and Cuban flags at his house in Havana.

June 30, 2021

Sub-Saharan Africa
Africa’s ‘Leaders for Life’

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to many of the world’s longest-ruling heads of state. Pro-democracy advocates have at times successfully stopped presidents from extending their mandates, but the authorita…

A worker throws away campaign posters of President Yoweri Museveni after Uganda’s 2021 election.

May 27, 2021

Middle East and North Africa
What Is U.S. Policy on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict?

The United States has long tried to negotiate a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but several factors, including deep divisions between and within the parties and declining U.S. interes…

A Palestinian uses a ladder to climb over the wall separating the Israeli and Palestinian sides of the West Bank.

May 18, 2021

Health
What Does the CDC Do?

The federal agency has a broad mandate to protect Americans’ health and an expansive global reach. But the COVID-19 pandemic has emerged as one of its most daunting challenges.

The CDC’s Emergency Operations Center is reflected in the glass of a room where staff meet to discuss the Ebola crisis in October 2014.

April 12, 2021

United States
How the U.S. Patrols Its Borders

U.S. troops have been sent to the border with Mexico to supplement the work of Border Patrol agents amid debate over the merits of building a wall. Here are the facts.

An aerial photo of a line of people sitting near a white pickup truck. They are facing a border barrier.

March 23, 2021

Middle East and North Africa
What Is the Kafala System?

The kafala system regulates the lives of tens of millions of migrant laborers in the Middle East, but growing outrage over human rights abuses, racism, and gender discrimination has fueled calls for …

Workers are seen in the Lusail National Stadium, which is under construction for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha, Qatar.

February 23, 2021

International Criminal Court
The Role of the International Criminal Court

The ICC was created to bring justice to the world’s worst war criminals, but debate over the court still rages.

Judges are pictured in the courtroom during the trial of Bosco Ntaganda at the International Criminal Court.

January 29, 2021

World Health Organization (WHO)
What Does the World Health Organization Do?

Since its postwar founding, the UN agency has garnered both praise and criticism for its response to international public health crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic.

A nurse working with the WHO prepares Ebola vaccines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

November 25, 2020

Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico: A U.S. Territory in Crisis

The Caribbean island, which shares a close yet fraught relationship with the rest of the United States, faces a multilayered economic and social crisis, rooted in long-standing policy and compounded …

A man rides his bicycle through a damaged road in Puerto Rico.

September 21, 2020

United States
U.S. Disaster Relief at Home and Abroad

The U.S. government responds to scores of disasters each year, coordinating closely with state, local, and foreign partners. However, more frequent and severe storms, fires, and floods are straining …

A person stands, back to the camera, in front of piles and rubbles and a house. The sky is pink and purple from the setting sun.