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June 27, 2019

Global
Same-Sex Marriage: Global Comparisons

A growing number of countries are legalizing same-sex marriage amid a steady advance in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights, but opposition remains strong in many countries.

A couple has their pre-wedding photos taken in Taipei, Taiwan.

January 31, 2019

Somalia
Al-Shabab

Al-Shabab remains capable of carrying out massive attacks in Somalia and surrounding countries despite a long-running African Union offensive against the Islamist group. 

Al-Shabab in Somalia

December 20, 2018

United States
The National Debt Dilemma

With the U.S. national debt already exceeding $15 trillion, President Trump’s tax reform and budget deals with Congress have added to the country’s deficits. CFR explores the origins of the national debt, the risks it presents, and the outlook for change.

US-Debt-BGR-Header-2-1160x630.jpg

July 11, 2012

Financial Markets
The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision

Controversies over too-big-to-fail financial institutions continue to mount. The Basel Accords represent the latest effort to ease risk and restore confidence, as this Backgrounder explains.

December 12, 2012

Budget, Debt, and Deficits
What Is the Fiscal Cliff?

While congressional action lags, a series of year-end fiscal measures could derail the U.S. recovery.

The U.S. Capitol building in Washington, DC.

October 27, 2010

United States
Immigration and the Midterm Elections

The economic climate and border security concerns have fueled the immigration debate in the U.S. congressional elections. This Backgrounder examines races where immigration is playing a role and the …

February 21, 2006

Defense and Security
The UAE purchase of American port facilities

A United Arab Emirates-owned company is set to take control of terminals in six major U.S. ports, raising questions about security.

July 16, 2009

Health Policy and Initiatives
Lessons in Universal Health Insurance Models

As the United States looks to reform its health care system and expand access to the uninsured, countries that have moved toward universal health care may offer lessons.

December 4, 2009

Energy and Climate Policy
Copenhagen’s Many Agendas

The UN conference on climate change that begins December 7 in Copenhagen is supposed to produce new targets for emissions reductions, but experts say major countries are at odds on the ultimate goal …

September 16, 2008

Political History and Theory
Foreign Policy and Political Nominating Conventions

U.S. political conventions offer the parties a place to unite around presidential candidates and a vision for foreign and domestic policy.

George W. Bush Nomination 2004