FP’s Best Covers of 2012

Start Slideshow View as a List
http://616711_121227_10_120215_Cover_Feb15_Iran4.jpg

Once Upon a Time in Tehran: Photos of a swinging Iran when the skirts were short, the dance was the twist, and America wasn't Enemy No. 1.

http://616712_121227_2_120109_Cover_Jan9_Syria2.jpg

Observing the Observers: The Arab League's monitoring mission in Syria has been a miserable failure, and no international white knight is waiting in the wings. Syrians are on their own. By Amal Hanano

http://616713_121227_3_120112_Cover_Jan12_Iraq2.jpg

My Mesopotamian Getaway: Fishing with handguns and touring ancient ruins in post-American Iraq. By Emma Sky

http://616714_121227_4_120113_Cover_Jan13_NKorea2.jpg

I Watched North Korea's Propaganda Film So You Don't Have To: New footage from North Korean state TV offers a rare glimpse at the (not necessarily real) life of Kim Jong Un. By Adam Cathcart

http://616715_121227_5_120126_Cover_Jan26_Newt2.jpg

Fly Me to the Moon: The Republican establishment would probably prefer that Newt Gingrich spend less time talking about lunar mining and space hotels. But the former House speaker may be the only true free-marketer in outer space. By Charles Homans

http://616716_121227_0_6_120202_Cover_Feb2_Assad2.jpg

Finish Him: Without international intervention, there's a good chance that Syria's dictator, Bashar al-Assad, could still rule for years. By Daniel Byman

http://616717_121227_1_120103_CoverTWO1-3-12.2b2.jpg

Supreme Loser: Why Iran's ayatollah-in-chief always gets it wrong. By Ali Vaez

http://616718_121227_7_120209_Cover_Feb9_Smith2.jpg

We're All State Capitalists Now: The debate about whether America or China will ultimately triumph is a red herring that distracts us from the real contest of our time. By Niall Ferguson

http://616719_121227_8_120210_Cover_Feb10_China2.jpg

Bull in the China Shop: The Obama administration is welcoming China's presumptive next leader, Xi Jinping. But how can it make good policy when the strategy is a mess? By Daniel Blumenthal

http://616720_121227_11_120227_Cover_Feb27_Hotels_v22.jpg

The Ritz-Carlton of Failed States: Welcome to the Serena Hotels, outposts of multi-star luxury in countries with zero-star conditions. By Michael Z. Wise

http://616721_121227_12_120302_Cover_Mar2_Body2.jpg

The Body Counter: Meet Patrick Ball, a statistician who's spent his life lifting the fog of war. By Tina Rosenberg

http://616722_121227_13_120305_Cover_Mar5_NapoleonV22.jpg

The Return of the King: Why Europe needs another Napoleon. By James Poulos

http://616723_121227_14_120308_CoverTHREE3-8-12.12.jpg

Six International Newspaper Columnists Who Actually Like Mitt Romney: The Republican candidate has boosters in unlikely places -- from Canada to the Congo. By Uri Friedman

http://616724_121227_15_120309_Cover_Mar9_Tsunami2.jpg

Sea Change: Haunting family photos pulled from the wreckage of Japan's tsunami.

http://616725_121227_16_120313_Cover_Mar12_Shalom2.jpg

Shalom, Beijing: Israel and China just celebrated 20 years of friendship. But will this new special relationship come to the breaking point over Tehran? By Oren Kessler

http://616726_121227_17_120313_CoverTWO3-13-12.12.jpg

Keep Calm and Carry On: The Arab world needs our help; it just doesn't know how to ask nicely.

http://616727_121227_18_120320_Cover_Mar20_China2.jpg

The Loneliest Superpower: How did China end up with only rogue states as its real friends? By Minxin Pei

http://616728_121227_19_120323_CoverONE3-23-12.12.jpg

Combat Camera: The year's best military photography.

http://616729_121227_20_120329_Cover_Mar29_DearLeader2.jpg

Escape Artist: Former North Korean propaganda painter Song Byeok explores the surreal world of Kim Jong Il on canvas.

http://616730_121227_21_120329_Cover_Mar29_Revenge2.jpg

The Revenge of Wen Jiabao: The ouster of Chongqing boss Bo Xilai was 30 years in the making -- a long, sordid tale of elite families and factions vying for the soul of the Chinese Communist Party. By John Garnaut

http://616731_121227_22_120403_Cover_Apr3_Kuwait2.jpg

Once Upon a Time in Kuwait: Pictures from a time before oil was king.

http://616732_121227_23_120405_Cover_Apr5_Quetta2.jpg

Welcome to Shura City: Religious and ethnic conflicts have left the Taliban's headquarters-in-exile battered and bleeding. By Farah Jan

http://616733_121227_24_120413_Cover_Apr13_NKoreav22.jpg

Could North Korea Have Struck It Rich?: Kim Jong Il promised that in 2012, North Koreans would witness a new dawn of prosperity. Here's how it could have been done. By Stephan Haggard

http://616734_121227_25_120423_Cover_April23_NightVision2.jpg

Night Vision: Former Peace Corps volunteer Peter DiCampo captures "Life Without Lights."

http://616735_121227_26_120427_Cover_Apr27_Eltahawy_update2.jpg

Why Do They Hate Us?: The real war on women is in the Middle East. By Mona ElTahawy

http://616736_121227_27_120502_Cover_May2_Chen2.jpg

Citizen Chen: How a Chinese legal activist became an icon of freedom. By Isaac Stone Fish

http://616737_121227_28_120504_Cover_May4_Putin2.jpg

Putin Forever: He's the president of Russia. He's a race-car driver. He's a blackbelt in judo. He's Vladimir Putin.

http://616738_121227_29_120508_Cover_May8_RINOs2.jpg

The Last RINO: To the modern Republican Party, Richard Lugar was already a dead man walking. He just didn't realize it. By Jacob Heilbrunn

http://616739_121227_30_120516_cover_may16_warriors2.jpg

Guarding Route Jeep: Haunting photos of the young Afghan recruits charged with guarding one of the country's -- and the Taliban's -- crucial supply routes. By Suchitra Vijayan

http://616740_121227_31_120517_CoverONE5-17-12.12.jpg

The 10 TED Talks They Should Have Censored: Some ideas aren't worth spreading. By Joshua E. Keating

http://616741_121227_32_120518_Cover_May18_Sonnets2.jpg

Sonnets for the Mujahideen: The militant movement has a little-examined sensitive side.

http://616742_121227_33_120522_CoverONE5-22-12.12.jpg

The Good Felool: If Amr Moussa wins Egypt's presidential election, is the revolution over? By David Kenner

http://616743_121227_34_120524_Cover_May24_Baku_updated2.jpg

Power Ballad: What happens when you mix a trashy Europop spectacle with an oil-soaked Caspian dictator? By Haley Sweetland Edwards

http://616744_121227_35_120525_Cover_May25_Rapper2.jpg

Me Against the World: In a Foreign Policy exclusive, American jihadist (and rapper) Omar Hammami sends word about al Shabaab's bloody leadership wars and how he became a target. By J.M. Berger

http://616745_121227_36_120529_Cover_May29_Queen2.jpg

Diamonds Are a Queen's Best Friend: The sun may have set on the British Empire, but the royals still throw a hell of a party.

http://616746_121227_37_120601_Cover_Jun1_Ayatollah2.jpg

The Ayatollah Is No Joke: What's behind Iran's cartoon crackdown? By Roland Elliott Brown

http://616747_121227_38_120616_Cover_ONEissue1942.jpg

Postcards from Hell, 2012: What does living in a failed state look like? A tour through the world's 60 most fragile countries.

http://616748_121227_0_39_120620_Cover_Jun20_Moon2.jpg

Red Moon Rising: Could China's lunar ambitions scramble politics here on Earth? By John Hickman

http://616749_121227_40_120628_CoverTWO6-28-12.12.jpg

EuroFail: How many summits does it take to NOT solve the eurocrisis? By Uri Friedman and Hillary Hurd

http://616750_121227_41_120703_Cover_July3_Twitter2.jpg

British r Coming. Pls RT!: What if Twitter had been around during the American Revolution?

http://616751_121227_42_120720_Cover_Jul20_Drone2.jpg

Flying Under the Influence: I've had it up to my synthetic aperture radar with the lawsuits and the criticism. This is why I drink and drone. By @drunkenpredator

http://616752_121227_43_120731_Cover_Jul31_Cancer2.jpg

Money Pit on the Potomac: Why is the Pentagon spending billions on breast cancer research? By John Norris

http://616753_121227_44_120803_Cover_Aug3_Riot2.jpg

Making Punk a Threat Again: Is Russia's Pussy Riot already the most politically influential punk rock group ever? By Spencer Ackerman

http://616754_121227_45_120807_CoverONE8-7-12.12.jpg

Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor French Millionaires: So France's new Socialist president wants to soak the rich? My message to French job-creators fleeing the nouveau régime: Mississippi welcomes you. By Haley Barbour

http://616755_121227_46_120809_CoverONE8-9-12.32.jpg

King Boris: Could Boris Johnson, the ridiculous yet charming mayor of London, really go on to lead Britain? By Alex Massie

http://616756_121227_47_120813_Cover_Aug13_Leftist2.jpg

Leftist Planet: Why do so many travel guides make excuses for dictators? By Michael Moynihan

http://616757_121227_48_120907_Cover_Sep7_Skateboard2.jpg

Skateboarding in Kabul: Half-pipes and headscarves in the Hindu Kush.

http://616758_121227_49_120911_Cover_Sep11_Somalia2.jpg

Hijacked: How the U.N. saved the Somali pirates from the brink of extinction. By Robert Young Pelton

http://616759_121227_50_120918_coverONE9-18-12.1natsec2.jpg

The Seven Deadly Sins of John Brennan: What Obama's high priest of targeted killings doesn't want you to know. By Micah Zenko

http://616760_121227_51_121012_Cover_Oct12_Nobel2.jpg

Worst. Prize. Ever.: Has the Nobel become a parody of itself? By Alex Massie

http://616761_121227_52_121018_Cover_Oct18_Argo_NS2.jpg

The True Spy Story Behind Argo: The internal CIA account of how the Iran rescue really went down. By Nate Jones

http://616762_121227_1_53_121025_Cover_Oct25_Ads2.jpg

Clicking This Will Make You Stupider: The 10 worst foreign policy campaign ads of 2012. By Uri Fredman and Ty McCormick

http://616763_121227_54_121115_Cover_Nov15_Bond2.jpg

The World Is Not Enough: Why does the planet's No. 1 spy never go to the really dangerous places? By Frank Jacobs

http://616764_121227_55_121129_CoverONE11-29-12.12.jpg

China's Copycat Cities: The People's Republic is building life-size European villages, but not for the reasons you think. By Jack Carlson

Previous Next Close