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Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, August 18, 2014

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, August 18, 2014

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Christian Caryl looks at the foreign policy thinking behind The Wizard of Oz as the film’s fans mark its 75th anniversary.

Sergii Leshchenko explains why oligarchs continue to wield so much power in post-Euromaidan Ukraine.

Blair Glencorse and Brooks Marmon make the case that good governance is the real cure for Ebola.

Juan Nagel assesses President Nicolas Maduro’s plans to slash Venezuela’s long-sacrosanct gas subsidy. Daniel Lansberg-Rodríguez investigates the Venezuelan government’s decision to promote anti-Semitism among its citizens.

Prachi Vidwans argues that the world’s cities to start planning for the inevitable influx of urban migrants.

Anna Nemtsova reports on the dimming prospects of Ukraine’s pro-Russian separatists — and why the conflict is still a long way from over.

And in the second of our Lab Reports on Turkey, Murat Ucer urges President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan to implement sophisticated reforms to reinvigorate economic growth.

And now for this week’s recommended reads:

In the Washington Post, Fareed Zakaria refutes the assumption that moderates are keeping Islamists at bay in the Arab world. Also in the Post, Anne Applebaum explains why Russia’s intervention in Ukraine has dealt a deadly blow to the concept of globalization.

Hans Rollman explains why Samuel Moyn’s new book argues that everything we think about human rights is wrong.

Writing for the New York Review of Books, Hugh Eakin looks into Oman’s little-examined role in the conflicts of the Middle East.

The Council on Foreign Relations’ Isobel Coleman tackles a thankless task: explaining to the citizens of developing countries why they should accept cuts in fuel subsidies.

At the LSE Review of Books, Elaine Housby reviews Richard Heydarian’s new book about the failures of capitalism in the Middle East.

The Atlantic Council’s Mohsin Khan and Svetlana Milbert offer some economic advice to Tunisia, the Arab Spring’s "last best hope."

Human Rights Watch rails against the Egyptian government for refusing its advocates entry into the country.

Tara Sonenshine explains the crisis in Mosul through the oft-overlooked issue of water scarcity. In the New Yorker, Rania Abouzeid looks at the turmoil in Iraq through its affects on the perilous lives of prostitutes in Baghdad. (In the photo above, an Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighter plays music on the front line in Khazer.)

Democracy Lab will be taking its annual break starting today. For the next two weeks, we’ll be republishing some of our favorite pieces.