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January 15, 2021

United States
A Unique Military Force: The U.S. National Guard

The National Guard is a special part of the U.S. military that answers to both state governors and the president. In some instances, how leaders have used the Guard has generated controversy, particu…

Members of the Connecticut National Guard survey flooded areas in Florida from a helicopter as part of the response to Hurricane Irma.

January 14, 2021

Transition 2021
Ten Things You Probably Don’t Know About Presidential Inaugurations

By now you no doubt have heard that President Donald Trump will skip President-Elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next Wednesday. Given Trump’s role in inciting last week’s mob attack on the Capitol Buil…

Capitol

January 12, 2021

Censorship and Freedom of Expression
Authoritarianism, Social Media, the United States, and Africa

Twitter and other social media platforms have suspended or restricted President Donald J. Trump's access, mostly because of his and his followers’ use of them to incite violence, though their stated, precise reasons vary from one to another.

A photo illustration shows the suspended Twitter account of U.S. President Donald Trump on a smartphone at the White House briefing room in Washington, D.C. on January 8, 2021.

December 18, 2020

Energy and Climate Policy
What’s Next for Fracking Under Biden?

President-Elect Joe Biden has walked a fine line on fracking, seeking to allow the practice while proposing restrictions to limit its greenhouse gas emissions. How have other countries approached fra…

December 18, 2020

Democratic Republic of Congo
Power-sharing Agreement Breaks Down in DRC

When Félix Tshisekedi assumed power in in the Democratic Republic of the Congo at the start of 2019, he did so not because of the will of the voters (who apparently favored a different candidate).

Felix Tshisekedi receives the presidential sash from the outgoing President Joseph Kabila during the inauguration ceremony whereby Tshisekedi was sworn into office as the new president of the Democratic Republic of Congo

December 15, 2020

Elections and Voting
The 2020 Election by the Numbers

It’s almost over. Yesterday Electoral College electors convened virtually or in person in state capitals across the country to cast their votes. The result was what everyone expected, the election of…

An elector looks at his signed ballot for Joe Biden.

December 11, 2020

Europe
Women This Week: Feminist Foreign Policy in Europe

Welcome to “Women Around the World: This Week,” a series that highlights noteworthy news related to women and U.S. foreign policy. This week’s post covers December 7 to December 11.

EU Leaders Summit in Brussels

December 11, 2020

Transition 2021
Transition 2021: Should a Retired General Be Secretary of Defense?

Each Friday, I look at what is happening in President-Elect Joe Biden’s transition to the White House. This week: Biden’s nomination of General Lloyd Austin to be secretary of defense raises question…

Retired General Lloyd Austin speaks at a podium as President-Elect Joe Biden sits behind him.

December 7, 2020

News Release
U.S. Should Focus on Where Real Power Lies in Nigeria and Other Postcolonial States, Says Former Ambassador in New Book

American diplomacy currently fails to recognize the diffuse nature of power in Nigeria and other postcolonial states, says John Campbell, Ralph Bunche senior fellow for Africa policy studies at the C…

December 4, 2020

Transition 2021
Transition 2021: The Looming Iran Crisis

Each Friday, I look at what is happening in President-Elect Joe Biden’s transition to the White House. This week: Iran will likely provide an early test for Biden and his national security team.

The Iranian flag flies in front of a nuclear power plant.