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January 15, 2020

Iran
Top Conflicts to Watch in 2020: An Armed Confrontation Between Iran and the United States

This year, an armed confrontation between Iran and the United States or one of its allies over Iran's involvement in regional conflicts and support of militant proxy groups was included as a top tier…

An Iranian navy boat tries to stop the fire of an oil tanker after it was attacked in the Gulf of Oman on June 13, 2019.

January 14, 2020

France
France and G5 Sahel Recommit Themselves as U.S. Mulls Drawdown

President Emmanuel Macron of France hosted a summit in Pau, southwestern France, with the heads of state of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauretania, and Niger. The purpose of the summit was to improve military coordination against insurgents with a particular focus on the Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) and al-Qaeda affiliate Jama'at Nasr al-Islam wal Muslimin (JNIM). Macron also sought, and received from the African chiefs of state, an endorsement of France’s continued presence in the region. He, in turn, pledged a small increase in the number of French soldiers to be deployed there. 

France's President Emmanuel Macron with the G5 Sahel heads of state deliver a news conference as part of the G5 Sahel summit on the situation in the Sahel region in Pau, France January 13, 2020

January 15, 2020

Election 2020
The President's Inbox: Should the United States Spend Less on Defense?

Each week between now and the Iowa caucuses, I’m talking with two experts with differing views on how the United States should handle a foreign policy challenge it faces. These special episodes are p…

U.S. Air Force F-35A aircraft form up during an exercise at Hill Air Force Base in Utah.

January 13, 2020

Cybersecurity
A New UN Cybercrime Treaty? The Way Forward for Supporters of an Open, Free, and Secure Internet

Last month, a Russian-led resolution on cybercrime that could pose challenges for countries that support a free and open model for the internet passed in the United Nations.

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers a speech during the reception to mark the Day of the Heroes, at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia

January 14, 2020

Trade
What to Look for in the “Phase One” U.S.-China Trade Deal

On Wednesday, January 15, Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and U.S. President Donald J. Trump will sign the “phase one” trade agreement that has been in the works since the March 22, 2018, determination u…

Trump Liu He Lighthizer Trade

January 13, 2020

United Kingdom
Brexit’s Finish Line Is Only the "End of the Beginning" for Britain and the European Union

The United Kingdom faces numerous uncertainties as Brexit nears its nominal finish line.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in London.

January 13, 2020

United States
The U.S. Presidential Nominating Process

Every four years, U.S. presidential candidates compete in a series of state contests to gain their party’s nomination. The political process is one of the most complex and expensive in the world.

Obama-2008-nomination_1.jpg

January 13, 2020

India
Scale Without Power: Global Cities in the World's Largest Democracy

This piece was originally published in the Diplomatic Courier as part of a collaboration with the Great Powers and Urbanization Project. It was adapted from the Workshop on Cities, Geopolitics, and t…

A laundry and high-rise buildings in Mumbai, India

January 13, 2020

Iraq
There Is Nothing Left for Americans to Do in Iraq

Qassem Suleimani and Tehran have won the battle for Baghdad. U.S. policymakers should understand that—and leave.

A demonstrator carries an Iraqi flag as he walks near burning tires, during ongoing anti-government protests in Najaf, Iraq January 12, 2020.

January 13, 2020

Middle East and North Africa
Pompeo’s Departure Is Restoring the State Department’s Swagger

The U.S. secretary of state appears to have one foot out the door—and that’s exactly what U.S. diplomats have been waiting for.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks during a news conference in the Press Briefing Room at the State Department in Washington, U.S., January 7, 2020.