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October 14, 2021

North Korea
Can U.S. And South Korean Public Opinion Align On North Korea?

U.S and South Korean polling on North Korea show strong support for denuclearization negotiations and summitry. How will growing consensus in public opinion impact U.S.-South Korea policy coordinatio…

People watch a TV broadcasting file footage of a news report on North Korea firing what appeared to be a pair of ballistic missiles off its east coast, in Seoul, South Korea, September 15, 2021.

October 4, 2021

Ethiopia
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Doubles Down as Suffering Intensifies

On September 30 the Ethiopian government declared seven senior UN officials—five from OCHA, one from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and an official from the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights—personae non gratae and insisted that they leave the country. Federal officials claimed that the expelled personnel had been “meddling in the internal affairs of the country.” The announcement came just days after the UN’s Emergency Relief Coordinator called the manmade crisis in Tigray “a stain on our conscience.”

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed stands and raises his right hand beside a woman standing at a podium with her hand raised. An Ethiopian flag sits behind both of them.

October 4, 2021

China
Making Sense of China’s Pledge to Stop Building Coal-Fired Power Plants Abroad

China's decision to stop funding coal plants abroad is an important step, but real progress will require phasing out coal at home.

A coal-burning power plant can be seen behind a factory in the city of Baotou, in China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region October 31, 2010.

September 20, 2021

Ethiopia
Ethiopia: U.S. Sanctions Threat Attempts to Change the Equation

Last week, the Biden administration rolled out a new executive order authorizing targeted financial sanctions on those found to be responsible for, or complicit in, exacerbating the conflict in and around the Tigray region or Ethiopia, hindering humanitarian assistance in region, or undermining Ethiopia’s democracy or territorial integrity. In its announcement, the White House was explicit in putting all of the parties to the conflict on notice, underscoring that the sanctions could apply to those in the Ethiopian government, the Eritrean government, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), and the Amhara region’s government and forces.

Several individuals stand in back of an armed truck.

September 17, 2021

United States
The United States Air Force Celebrates Its 74th Birthday Tomorrow

The United States Air Force marks seventy-four years of service.

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September 10, 2021

South Africa
Murder of South African Whistleblower Illustrates Dangerous Status Quo

The murder of Babita Deokaran on August 23 is a tragic example that strains of political violence harnessed by those resisting accountability and transparency persist. Deokaran was a senior financial officer at the Gauteng Department of Health and an important witness in an investigation of corruption within the department; former colleagues believe she was helping authorities link senior political figures to irregular procurement deals and contracts in an organization that is supposed to be committed to public health, not elite enrichment. President Ramaphosa hailed the late whistleblower as “a hero and a patriot.”

A woman walks holding the hand of a child with an armored car and a police vehicle parked behind her. The image is seen through a wall of barbed wire.

September 1, 2021

United States
Seven Resources Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theories

With the twentieth anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks approaching, we recommend sources for better understanding 9/11 and its aftermath. This week: seven resources that debunk 9…

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August 27, 2021

U.S. Foreign Policy
Five Movies Worth Watching About Foreign-Policy Conspiracies

Every summer Friday, we suggest foreign-policy-themed movies worth watching. This week: films about conspiracies in the halls of power. 

Three movie posters in black frames. From left: The Manchurian Candidate (a sketch of a man, a gun, and a queen of hearts card); JFK (a man looks out from a red, white, and blue design); Kill the Messenger (a man with the U.S. Capitol Building reflected in his sunglasses).

August 25, 2021

Technology and Innovation
To Protect U.S. Economic and National Security, Biden Should Address Concentration in the Defense Sector

Reforming the defense sector, and exploring alternative pathways for federal investment, should be priorities for the Biden administration.

Workers can be seen on the moving line and forward fuselage assembly areas for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter at Lockheed Martin Corp's factory located in Fort Worth, Texas in this October 13, 2011 handout photo provided by Lockheed Martin.

August 26, 2021

Nigeria
Nigeria Releases Three Israelis and a Nigerian Jew Accused of Separatism

Nigeria’s State Security Service (SSS) in July arrested three Israeli filmmakers and their Nigerian liaison. Following apparent, unpublicized diplomatic intervention, the three Israelis were released; none were ever charged after eighteen days in jail. Their Nigerian liaison was held an additional eleven days before she was released, also never having been charged.

A map of Nigeria's major ethnic groups.