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September 13, 2018

Sub-Saharan Africa
The Risks of Reducing U.S. Special Operations in Africa

The Pentagon plans to withdraw its special operations forces in Africa, but major cutbacks could threaten recent efforts to counter terrorism threats across the region.

Chadian soldiers take a break during Operation Flintlock, U.S.-led military exercises, in Diffa, Niger.

May 8, 2018

Rohingya
The Rohingya Crisis and the Meaning of Genocide

Despite evidence of systematic violence against the Rohingya, countries remain reluctant to classify the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar’s Rakhine State as genocide.

Hannah McKay/Reuters

May 4, 2018

Iran Nuclear Agreement
How Sanctions Decision Could Jeopardize the Iran Agreement

Iran could restart aspects of its nuclear program if President Trump declines to renew sanctions waivers this month, leaving major powers with few options for monitoring or restricting it.

President Trump speaks about the Iran nuclear agreement at the White House in October 2017.

April 15, 2018

Syria
Legal Questions Loom Over Syria Strikes

In striking Syria without an international law justification, the United States leaves itself open to criticism and may invite similar behavior by other countries.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley and UK Ambassador Karen Pierce vote against a Russian resolution condemning “aggression” against Syria during an emergency UN Security Council meeting.

March 23, 2018

Russia
Russia’s Poisonous Message to the World

The circumstances surrounding the attack on a former Russian spy in England leave little doubt that Russia was the culprit and cast a lengthening shadow over the global regime to stop chemical weapon…

Henry Nicholls/Reuters

March 15, 2018

Russia
Are Cold War Spy-Craft Norms Fading?

The poisoning of former double agent Sergei V. Skripal in the UK indicates that Russia may have abandoned some unspoken rules of espionage. CIA veteran Jack Devine examines the history and current state of spy-craft.

UK Skripal Poisoning Crime Scene

February 22, 2018

Food and Water Security
Why Is Cape Town Drying Up?

A historic dry spell has severely affected Cape Town's water supply, and global climate patterns suggest that other cities may face the same fate.

Dry Cape Town dam

April 11, 2011

Political Movements
Tumultuous Middle East, Timid White House

Tunisia’s abolition of the secret police and ruling party--and its ending of censorship--make it the model for change in a turbulent region where the White House has been too timid in supporting prot…

November 17, 2017

Lebanon
Saudi Arabia’s Lebanon Gambit

Saudi Arabia pressed Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri to resign to try to weaken Iran-backed Hezbollah in Lebanon. The path to resolving the crisis could run through Yemen.

King Salman meets with Saad Hariri in Riyadh.

October 2, 2017

Myanmar
How Myanmar’s Military Wields Power From the Shadows

Despite Myanmar’s recent transition to civilian leadership, the military has retained significant power and is most to blame for the sectarian violence against the Rohingya.

A Myanmar soldier stands near a township in Rakhine State, September 27, 2017.