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February 10, 2020

Australia
Five Questions on Gender Equality in Foreign Policy: Natasha Stott Despoja

This blog post is part of the Women and Foreign Policy program’s interview series on Gender Equality in Foreign Policy, featuring global and U.S. officials leading initiatives to promote gender equal…

Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop hands over a gift to girls from the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) during a visit in Davao city, Philippines.

February 10, 2020

Coronavirus
The Coronavirus Tests Xi Jinping's Top-Down System

The coronavirus outbreak is on track to become the worst humanitarian and economic crisis of Xi Jinping's tenure, but the Chinese president is certainly not likely to resign.

People wearing masks walk past a portrait of Chinese President Xi Jinping on a street as the country is hit by an outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Shanghai.

February 5, 2020

Sub-Saharan Africa
Eighty Years of U.S. Policy Toward Africa, Now in One Place

Until now, there has not been a comprehensive survey of U.S. policy toward Africa for either the specialist or the general reader. Now, happily, there is. Herman J. Cohen (‘Hank’) has just published U.S. Policy Toward Africa: Eight Decades of Realpolitik, covering fourteen U.S. administrations. It is hard to think of anyone as qualified as Ambassador Cohen to undertake such a work. A career Foreign Service Officer, Hank Cohen was, inter alia, charge in the Democratic Republic of Congo, ambassador to Senegal, senior director for Africa at the National Security Council, and assistant secretary for Africa at the U.S. Department of State.

U.S. President George W. Bush and his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame cut a ribbon to officially open the U.S. Embassy in the capital of Kigali, on February 19, 2008.

January 24, 2020

Election 2020
Campaign Foreign Policy Roundup: Restoring U.S. Leadership

Each Friday, I look at what the presidential challengers are saying about foreign policy. This week: U.S. leadership in the world; the wisdom of making campaign donors ambassadors; and early voting b…

Former South Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg speaks at a campaign rally in Muscatine, Iowa, on January 21. Ivan Alvarado/Reuters

January 3, 2020

Election 2020
Campaign Foreign Policy Roundup: The Killing of Qasem Soleimani

Each Friday, I look at what the presidential challengers are saying about foreign policy. This week: the U.S. drone strike that killed an Iranian general, the wisdom of Joe Biden’s Iraq vote, and for…

Demonstrators hold a picture of Qassim Suleimani as they protest his assassination by the United States in Tehran, Iran, on January 3. Nazanin Tabatabaee/West Asia News Agency via Reuters.

January 3, 2020

Cameroon
Lessons From the Past on Cameroon’s Crisis

The violent conflict in Cameroon, still rarely discussed in Washington, is becoming increasingly dire. Both President Paul Biya’s Francophone regime in Yaounde and the Anglophone separatists in the southwest region are accused of brutal human rights abuses, including the burning of villages, attacks on schools, and the killing of men, women, and children. Despite mediation attempts by the Swiss government and sanctions by the Trump administration, there are no signs of any progress towards a negotiated settlement. 

A sign saying " Speak English or French for a bilingual Cameroon" outside a now abandoned school in rural southwest Cameroon, on May 22, 2019.

January 2, 2020

Sudan
Sudan’s Transformative Year and the Challenges Ahead

2019 brought spectacular change to Sudan. It’s hard to overstate the astonishing distance the country has traveled over the past year. Recent headlines feature reports of truly unfettered humanitarian access, the conviction of former President Omar al-Bashir on corruption charges, and concrete steps on the part of the state to promote religious tolerance.

A Sudanese man wears a national flag and flashes the victory sign as people gather during the first anniversary of the start of the uprising that toppled long-time ruler Omar al-Bashir, in Khartoum, Sudan December 19, 2019

December 31, 2019

Global
Ten World Figures Who Died in 2019

I wrote yesterday about ten Americans who died in 2019 who shaped U.S. foreign policy during their lifetimes. But Americans are not the only ones who influence world affairs. Below are ten world figu…

SO

December 30, 2019

Global
Ten American Foreign Policy Notables Who Died in 2019

Year’s end is a time for taking stock, counting successes, and assessing failures. It is also time for remembering those who are no longer with us. Here are ten Americans who died in 2019 who through…

Flags

December 20, 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo
Remembering Richard Holbrooke and His Contributions to the Congo

Twenty years ago, I was catching my breath after a whirlwind trip through central and southern Africa. I had been traveling with my boss, Senator Russ Feingold, whose expertise on African affairs eve…

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Richard Holbrooke speaks at the UN Security Council after members voted to authorize a 5,500-member force to monitor the ceasefire in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, on February 24, 2000