2009

ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images

Dancing the Apocalypso

Millions of religious believers around the world share a passionate belief in the coming of doomsday -- and that means that the End of Days will remain a factor in politics at least until, well, the end of humankind.

Photo by Joshua Kucera

Vladivostok’s Used-Car Dealers Are Mad as Hell

Where Russia Meets China: Part 4 of a 5-part series in cooperation with Slate.

JOHN THYS/AFP/Getty Images

In Italy, Farce or Tragedy?

This year, Berlusconi gave journalists plenty to work with, from his bickering with his wife to his bickering with the courts. But is he muffling Italian journalism at the same time? 

Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images

Muslims and the Caliphate

A top representative of the Islamist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir responds to FP's Christian Caryl.

JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images

A Radioactive Situation

As Yukiya Amano takes the helm at the International Atomic Energy Agency, he must contend with escalating conflicts in Iran and Syria, sharp divides among nations on the Board of Governors -- and the long shadow cast by his predecessor.

SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images

European Pipe Dreams Meet Chinese Pipelines

As China invests in energy-rich Central Asia, Europe pays the price for its muddled approach to energy security.

BEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP/Getty Images

The Middle East’s Interrupted Atomic Dreams

As oil prices drop, nuclear power is becoming less attractive in the region. So why is Iran still hanging on to its program?

Photo by Joshua Kucera

Don’t Call Them Twin Cities

Where Russia Meets China: Part 2 of a 5-part series in cooperation with Slate.

Photo by Joshua Kucera

“China is the destiny of Siberia.”

Where Russia Meets China: Part 3 of a 5-part series in cooperation with Slate.

ED OUDENAARDEN/AFP/Getty Images

No, Madam Secretary: The System Is Not Working

To prevent would-be terrorists like Umar Abdulmutallab from slipping through the cracks, the Obama administration must rethink its approach to homeland security.

Photo by Joshua Kucera

Meet the Siberian Liberation Army

Where Russia Meets China: Part 1 of a 5-part series in cooperation with Slate.

David Silverman/Getty Images

Losing Cairo?

Since Barack Obama's speech six months ago, the Muslim world has begun to lose hope in the United States. But it's not too late ... yet.

Chris Hondros/GETTY IMAGES

Blood Diamonds Are Back

Why the U.N.-sanctioned system that's supposed to ensure that gemstones aren't mined at gunpoint is backfiring.

HOANG DINH NAM/AFP/Getty Images

The End of Influence

For as long as many can remember, the United States has been the country with money, influence, and power. But all that is changing, write Brad DeLong and Stephen Cohen in their new book, The End of Influence. FP excerpts exclusively here.

Shannon Stapleton-Pool/Getty Images

Containment Breach

Preventing nuclear war between Iran and Israel would be more difficult than it ever was to avoid a nuclear confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union. Here's why.

REBECCA REID/AFP/Getty Images

The Party’s Not Over

Does Islamist party Hizb-ut-Tahrir pose a threat to Western society? The answer may well be yes -- but that doesn't mean it should be banned.

VOLKER HARTMANN/AFP/Getty Images

Coal for Christmas

The World Bank is still subsidizing one of the world's dirtiest fuels.

TORSTEN SILZ/AFP/Getty Images

Crude Is the New Carbon

Since the world can't seem to agree on cutting carbon emissions, maybe it's time to try an easier but equally important target: oil.

Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

How to Whip the Afghan Army Into Shape

Much of President Barack Obama's strategy rests on the creation of a new, more competent Afghan military. Here's what he'll need to know to get the job done.

SIMON MAINA/AFP/Getty Images

Time to Take Away Sudan’s Credit Card

Sudanese officials are heading to Washington in search of a bailout. But the Obama administration should condition its support on an improvement in the country's dismal human rights record.

AXEL SCHMIDT/ AFP/ GETTY IMAGES

How China Stiffed the World in Copenhagen

Why Beijing insists, "Don't look at our books!"

The FP Quiz

Are you a globalization junkie? Then test your knowledge of global trends, economics, and politics with 8 questions about how the world works.

1st page: SERGEI KOMPAIYCHENKO/AFP/Getty Images

No Heads Are Better Than Two

Russia's double-headed eagle is not just a national emblem. It's a symbol of the national schizophrenia.

KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images

The Islamists Are Not Coming

Religious parties in the Muslim world are hardly the juggernauts they've been made out to be.

NIALL BENVIE/CORBIS

How High the Moon?

Eclipses move markets. Really.

Illustration for FP by JOSEPH CIARDIELLO

Epiphanies: Ashraf Ghani

Afghanistan's first postwar finance minister has now set his sights on reforming the country from the ground up, calling out his former boss, President Hamid Karzai, for corruption and failure. Here, the poetry-loving Pashtun speaks with FP about his troubled homeland's past and future.

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The New Blood Diamonds

Diamonds from African countries have been funding guerrilla wars for decades. But they're not the only precious gems with blood on their hands. Here are four more prized resources that are fraught with conflict.

Top: DENNIS DEGNAN/CORBIS

The Elephant in the Room

The biggest pain in Asia isn't the country you'd think.

Amos BenGershom/GPO via Getty Images

The Mideast Peace Deal You Haven’t Heard About

Benjamin Netanyahu is much more serious about Middle East peace than most Americans realize. With U.S. diplomacy on the brink of a surprising success, it's time for the Palestinians to step up.

MANOOCHER DEGHATI/AFP/Getty Images

Noriega’s Revenge

Twenty years after the U.S. invasion of Panama, America's ambassador to the United Nations at the time considers it an important stepping stone to the disastrous 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Courtesy of the U.S. Department of Defense.

My Trip to a Fake Afghan Village

How the U.S. military is preparing civilians for a surge of their own.

iStockphoto.com

It Didn’t Happen

The dollar didn't crash. Tariffs didn't come roaring back. The world's growing economies didn't grind to a halt. And other scary tales that failed to come true during the crisis.

CORNELL CAPA/MAGNUM PHOTOS

Think Again: Nuclear Weapons

President Obama’s pledge to rid the world of atomic bombs is a waste of breath. But not for the reasons you might imagine.

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A Double Dip

Rising oil prices could drive the global economy into another recession.

PHOTOS BY TEUN VOETEN/PANOS PICTURES

What’s Spanish for Quagmire?

Five myths that caused the failed war next door.

ALEXEY NIKOLSKY/AFP/Getty Images

Crimea and Punishment

On the eve of Ukraine's presidential election, a resurgent Russia may use the disputed territory of Crimea to reassert its hegemony over its eastern neighbor.

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Limbo World

They start by acting like real countries, then hope to become them.

MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images

This Week at War: McChrystal Pulls Out His Old Iraq Playbook

What the four-stars are reading -- a weekly column from Small Wars Journal.

STUART PRICE/AFP/Getty Images

Africa’s New Horror

South Sudan's declaration of independence could thrust the country back into a bloody civil war.

-/AFP/Getty Images

Welcome to Qaedastan

Yemen's coming explosion will make today's problems seem tame.

MICHAEL URBAN/AFP/Getty Images

The Pope and the Chancellor

What does their running battle tell us about the future of European politics?

ATTILA KISBENEDEK/AFP/Getty Images

After Pharaoh

Hosni Mubarak's death -- or worse, his failure to give up power -- could throw the largest country in the Arab world into chaos.

FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images

R.I.P, WTO

Why 2010 could mark the death of the global trade system as we know it.

Obama’s Copenhagen Speech

The prepared text of U.S. President Barack Obama's address at the Morning Plenary Session of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Oslo, Norway.

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