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October 27, 2017

Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia’s Democratic Decline in the America First Era

President Trump appears little troubled by the sharp democratic decline in Southeast Asia, but the rise of authoritarianism could hurt U.S. interests in the region.

Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha shakes hands with U.S. President Donald J. Trump in Washington, D.C., October 2, 2017.

February 27, 2018

Indonesia
The Rise of Islamist Groups in Malaysia and Indonesia

The rise of Islamism in Malaysia and Indonesia could have severe consequences for the two states’ societies, political systems, and overall stability.

Students pray at an Islamic boarding school in Indonesia.

June 27, 2018

State and Local Governments
The New City Multilateralism

As the world rapidly grows more urban, city leaders are turning to a new form of voluntary, locally oriented diplomacy to coordinate with their global peers on sustainable development, infrastructure…

Mumbai's urban development

May 31, 2018

Iran
Iran’s Restive Middle-Class Poor

The latest recurrence of domestic protests in Iran stems from the country’s role in regional wars, combined with corruption and economic mismanagement. This discontent is likely to continue to pose a…

Opponents of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hold a protest outside the Iranian embassy in Rome, Italy, on January 2, 2018.

December 13, 2017

China
Australia, New Zealand Face China’s Influence

Reports that China has stepped up efforts to gain influence in foreign political systems have sparked concern in Australia, New Zealand, and other states amid signs that the campaign may be shaping d…

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang shake hands before a ceremony in Canberra, Australia.

April 25, 2018

South Korea
High-Stakes Drama in Panmunjom

CFR assesses the prospects for the first inter-Korean summit in ten years. Kim Jong-un and South Korean president Moon Jae-in will discuss a peaceful end to North Korea’s nuclear program, setting the stage for Kim’s planned meeting with Donald J. Trump in June.

Tourists look toward North Korea from the southern side of the demilitarized zone.

March 2, 2018

South Korea
Will South Korea’s Olympic Diplomacy Last?

South Korea must capitalize on its diplomatic push to bridge the divide between its longtime ally and its combative neighbor.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, North Korea’s Kim Yong-nam, and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s sister Kim Yo-jong attend the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

June 30, 2017

Philippines
Duterte Fumbles in Southern Philippines

Rodrigo Duterte’s chaotic strategy against Islamic State-linked groups in the Philippines might fail to defeat the most extreme militants while squandering the chance for peace.

Philippine government troops take cover in Marawi City.

February 13, 2018

South Africa
Jacob Zuma’s Undoing

The scandal-plagued leader’s removal could set the party of Nelson Mandela on a path toward reestablishing South Africa as a role model for the rest of the continent.

South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa (left) and President Jacob Zuma stand at the opening of Parliament in Cape Town.

December 20, 2017

Global Governance
Desperately Seeking Sherpas: Ten Global Summits to Watch in 2018

The Trump administration’s approach to ten critical global summits in the year ahead will show whether its pullback from multilateralism in 2017 was an aberration or the start of a new normal.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters