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January 18, 2019

Oil and Petroleum Products
OPEC in a Changing World

Western leaders have long criticized OPEC’s power to raise oil prices, but the bloc’s influence is on the wane as U.S. oil production has soared and alternative energies have come to the fore.

OPEC

January 16, 2019

United Kingdom
What Brexit Means

Brexit supporters argue that the EU threatens sovereignty and stifles growth, while opponents counter that EU membership strengthens trade, investment, and the UK’s standing in the world.

EU and UK flags fly during a pro-EU march in front of the British Parliament in London.

January 7, 2019

Public Health Threats and Pandemics
The Ebola Virus

Endemic to the African tropics, the Ebola virus has killed thousands in recent years, putting the World Health Organization and major donor countries in the limelight as they’ve grappled with how to …

A health-care worker stands next to a cross during the funeral of a person suspected of dying of Ebola in Beni, Democratic Republic of Congo.

December 7, 2018

Saudi Arabia
U.S.-Saudi Arabia Relations

Relations between the two countries, long bound by common interests in oil and security, have strained over what some analysts see as a more assertive Saudi foreign policy.

U.S. President Donald J. Trump walks with Saudi King Salman at a summit in Riyadh.

November 1, 2018

International Organizations
The IMF: The World’s Controversial Financial Firefighter

The International Monetary Fund, both criticized and lauded for its efforts to promote financial stability, continues to find itself at the forefront of global economic crisis management.

IMF Director Christine Lagarde

October 11, 2018

China
Religion in China

As religious observance in China grows, the Chinese Communist Party continues to toughen oversight, increase religious persecution, and attempt to coopt state-sanctioned religious organizations.

Uighur men leave a mosque following the Eid prayers in Kashgar.

August 8, 2018

Nigeria
Nigeria’s Battle With Boko Haram

Boko Haram, known for mass kidnappings, bombings, and other acts of terrorism, remains an enduring threat to northern Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin.

A girl watches other children on a merry-go-round in an abandoned amusement park in Maiduguri, Nigeria.

July 19, 2018

North Korea
North Korea’s Power Structure

In North Korea, all authority flows from Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un. He has reinstated the party as the central hub to consolidate his power and bring elites to heel.

Pedestrians walk past portraits of Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il.

July 17, 2018

Nuclear Weapons
‘No First Use’ and Nuclear Weapons

Nearly all nuclear weapon states, as a matter of policy, remain ready to use their weapons without having first suffered a nuclear attack.

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

July 5, 2018

NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization)
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

NATO is girding up for what some believe is a new Cold War with Russia, but President Trump’s criticism of longtime allies has unsettled the twenty-nine-member bloc.

Nato