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May 31, 2019

Israel
How to Read Israel’s Election Turmoil

Israel’s politics have been upended for much of this year by elections and are now set to be disrupted for much of the rest, while Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces likely indictment on corrupt…

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks to the media at the Knesset in Jerusalem.

May 30, 2019

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.

May 29, 2019

Nigeria
Strapped for Cash, Nigeria Plans to Close Some Embassies

Nigeria, the “Giant of Africa,” has a long history of diplomatic leadership. It was one of the founders of the African Union and of the Economic Community of West African States. It regularly occupie…

Nigeria-Oslo-Foreign-Affairs-Minister-Onyeama

May 28, 2019

Nigeria
Nigeria Security Tracker Weekly Update: May 18–24

This update represents violence in Nigeria and related to Boko Haram in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger from May 18 to 24, 2019.

Nigeria-Boko-Haram-Terrorism-Security-Tracker

May 23, 2019

Nigeria
ISWA Tries to Win Over Some Nigerians While Killing Others

The conventional wisdom is that the Boko Haram faction that calls itself the Islamic State in West African (ISWA) is less brutal than Abubakar Shekau’s rival faction, notorious for the Chibok school girl kidnapping and the targeting of civilians. There is some truth to this: ISWA has avoided using female and child suicide bombers and it does not seem to indiscriminately murder entire villages. Its rhetoric does not glory in murder like Shekau’s.

Nigeria-ISWA-Boko-Haram-Military-Bomb

May 21, 2019

Chad
Farmer Herder Clashes in Chad Follow Familiar Pattern

There are new reports of violence, characterized as farmer-herder conflict, in Chad. According to Agence France Presse and Voice of America, thirty-five have died [French] since May 16 in separate in…

Chad-Farmer-Herder

May 21, 2019

China
China’s Massive Belt and Road Initiative

China’s Belt and Road Initiative is the most ambitious infrastructure investment effort in history. But is it also a plan to remake the global balance of power?

Zhang Peng/LightRocket via Getty Images

May 15, 2019

Burkina Faso
French Forces Free Hostages in Burkina Faso With U.S. Help

President Emmanuel Macron of France announced on May 10 that French military forces rescued four hostages in Burkina Faso held by Islamist militants. Two were French, one was American, and one was South Korean. No authorities have released freed hostage names, citing privacy considerations. However, the operation cost the lives of two French soldiers, the names of whom have been made public.

France-Macron-Military-Burkina-Faso-Hostage

May 14, 2019

Saudi Arabia
Oil Sabotage Might Seem Like Small Potatoes, But Underlying Geopolitical Problems Are Not

The United States keeps signaling that it has hard power. Most recently, the United States made known that it was deploying additional ships, the USS Abraham Lincoln and USS Arlington, to the Middle …

A damaged Andrea Victory ship is seen off the Port of Fujairah, United Arab Emirates, May 13, 2019. 

May 13, 2019

Trade
The Global Trading System: What Went Wrong and How to Fix It

Introduction It has now been more than a quarter century since the United States, the European Union (EU), Japan and more than 100 other countries came together to conclude the Uruguay Round globa…

WTO World Trade Organization Geneva