Electoral posters in Lausanne, Switzerland that translate from French as "Too much is too much!" and "Protecting the jobs of local workers now" to advertise a right-wing Swiss Peoples Party (SVP)-backed initiative that voted on Sept. 27, 2020 demanding that the government scrap the freedom of movement agreement with the EU within a year.

The EU’s Next Big Problem Is Switzerland

Europe is facing its first post-Brexit test of how tough it should be with its close neighbors.

A rare-earth refinery.

Why Rare Earths Are the Key to Just About Everything

They’re not actually that rare, but their importance to almost all modern technologies cannot be overstated.

People walk in front of a statue.

Uzbekistan’s Online Religious Revival

After years of state oppression, many Uzbeks are finding stricter interpretations of Islam on the internet. Some experts say it could have radical consequences.

Afghan cadets take part in a firing exercise during a training program at the Officers Training Academy in Chennai, India, on Feb. 18.

Afghanistan Shows the Limits of India’s Power

With the United States departing, New Delhi is seeking new ways to project influence.

Then-Human Rights Watch director Sarah Margon

Biden Looks to Progressive for Key Human Rights Post

Sarah Margon has been an outspoken critic of authoritarian allies of the United States.

Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Brazil's former president

Brazil’s Most Popular Politician Might Dial Back Bolsonaro’s Legacy—but Won’t Take the Country Into the Future

Lula may offer the strongest alternative to Bolsonaro, yet his policies for Brazil won’t fully address the country’s challenges.

A demonstrator holds up a portrait of George Floyd.

Justice for George Floyd Has Only Just Begun

Finding Derek Chauvin guilty of murder provides Americans with accountability—not justice. Now lawmakers need to make sure the system actually changes.

Lee Yong-soo speaks to the media after a court ruling.

The Legacy of Wartime Atrocities Still Looms Over Asian Alliances

Survivors of World War II sexual enslavement seemed one step closer to reparations, but international pressure and a Korean judge intervened.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro speaks to the media at the United Nations headquarters in New York on July 28, 2015.

The U.N.’s Moment in Venezuela Has Arrived

Nicolás Maduro has given the international community the opening it’s been waiting for.

A woman holds a sign during a climate protest in Cali, Colombia, on Sept. 20, 2019.

With a Feminist Foreign Policy, Biden Could Get Climate Change Right

At this week’s summit, the United States will need to think bigger. Here’s how.

Supporters of gun control protest outside of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Solution to America’s Gun Problem Is Noncooperation

Substantive change will only come from protests and marches against the same global forces that brought us slavery and racism.

Older people queue for the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine outside a tent as nurses work at a local hospital in Harare, Zimbabwe, on March 29.

COVAX Obstacles Threaten Africa’s Vaccine Rollout

Underfunding and India’s export restrictions mean some African citizens may have to wait until 2023 to get their shot.

In the Magazine

In the Magazine

50-years-zakaria-tepperman-foreign-policy-noma-bar-illustration-HP

America and the World: How to Build Back Better

Looking back on 50 years of U.S. foreign policy and the lessons they hold for Washington today.

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A New Pivot to Asia

The fuzzy goodwill between Biden and America’s Asian allies will soon be tested by China’s growing power.

Foreign Policy Begins at Home

The best way for Biden to build better partnerships abroad is to get America’s own house in order—that starts with human rights.

A mujra dancer on stage in Pakistan.

‘Showgirls of Pakistan’ Doesn’t Need Your Victim Narrative

In a new documentary about mujra dancers, Saad Khan escapes the Western documentary complex to give his subjects the chance to speak in their own words.

A young shepherd plays with his sheep.

‘The Taliban Have Tracked Me’

In Logar province, just outside of Kabul, fear of a Taliban takeover rises.

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin smile during the Belt and Road Forum.

China and Russia Turn Deeper Ties into a Military Challenge for Biden

“You face a two-front war where we don’t have a two-front military,” said one former Trump official.

A U.S. soldier dressed in a World War II military uniform picks up sand from Omaha beach next to a U.S. soldier looking at a man driving a horse sulky on the sidelines of a ceremony in Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer, western France, on June 5, 2019.

The U.S. Military Needs Citizen-Soldiers, Not Warriors

The recent obsession with the term is misguided and harmful.

Lebanon’s Cardinal Bechara al-Rai is in Bkerke.

The Christian Priest Who Wants to Redeem Lebanon’s Sins

Can the leader of the Maronite church help bring an end to sectarian strife?

Representatives of the European Union and Iran attend nuclear talks at the Grand Hotel in Vienna on April 6.

Israel Should Support Biden’s Efforts to Revive the Iran Nuclear Deal

Reducing Iran’s breakout time and restoring robust monitoring are the most urgent priorities.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti addresses a crowd of protesters opposed to Trump administration immigration policies in Los Angeles on June 30, 2018.

Why U.S. Cities and States Should Play a Bigger Role in Foreign Policy

Part of making foreign policy work better for Americans is empowering local leaders.

Voices

Bernie Sanders talks with Rand Paul as they head to the Senate Chamber for a vote on April 26, 2018 in Washington.

End the ‘Forever War’ Cliché

The war in Afghanistan needed to wind down. But Washington is learning the wrong lesson.

Members of the Czech Embassy in Russia arrive at the airport.

Western Powers Need to Get More Creative Against Russia

The Czech Republic’s kerfuffle over diplomats demonstrates the need to think bigger—and smaller—when it comes to responding to cyberattacks.

Angela Merkel (L) speaks with Joe Biden at the start of their meeting at the Chancellery on Feb. 1, 2013 in in Berlin.

Biden’s Refugee Policy Is a Profile in Cowardice

As immigration becomes a political crisis, the U.S. president has chosen pandering to nativists over problem-solving.

Supporters of Naxalite People’s War Group wait for leaders to address a public meeting in India’s Guntur district on Oct. 11, 2004.

India Embattled

The country can’t contain insurgent movements until it has a comprehensive national plan for tackling them.

A FOCUS ON RACE AND FOREIGN POLICY

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Why Is Mainstream International Relations Blind to Racism?

Ignoring the central role of race and colonialism in world affairs precludes an accurate understanding of the modern state system.

Black Lives Matter Protest London

When Did Racism Become Solely a Domestic Issue?

International relations theorists once explored racism. What has the field lost by giving that up?

Thousands of people gather at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington to call for police and criminal justice reforms.

Put Racial Justice at Center of the Biden-Harris Transition Plan

The new administration can learn from South Africa’s experience with transitional justice.

George Floyd mural unveiled in Brooklyn.

As America Seeks Racial Justice, It Can Learn From Abroad

Other countries offer good lessons for acknowledging and redressing past wrongs.

visual stories

Francisco, 34, an asylum-seeking migrant from Honduras, cradles his 9-month-old daughter, Megan, from the early morning cold and wind in La Joya, Texas, as they await transportation to a processing center after crossing the Rio Grande into the United States from Mexico on a raft March 25. Adrees Latif/REUTERS

The Month in World Photos

March brought a new wave of migrants at the U.S. border—plus the pope’s historic visit to Iraq, continued bloodshed in Myanmar, and a colossal logjam in the Suez Canal.

Dressed as Marianne, a symbol of the French republic, members of the conservative activist group Manif pour Tous (“Protest for Everyone”) mark International Women’s Day by protesting against assisted reproductive technology and surrogacy in front of the National Assembly in Paris on March 8. LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP via Getty Images

Rising Up in Protest: A Year in Photos

Fists raised and voices lifted, people around the world took to the streets in 2020—to stand up against police brutality, demand democracy, and confront other injustices. A look at some of the photos that captured the year’s most defining movements.