Explainer

Police vehicles sit outside of Congregation Beth Israel synagogue.

How Aafia Siddiqui Became a Radical Cause Célèbre

The Pakistani citizen, a U.S. federal prisoner, has attracted support from extremists around the world.

A U.S. Navy sailor walks past an MK 41 pad on the USS Chafee (DDG-90), anchored at a South Korean naval port in Donghae.

Putin’s Fixation With an Old-School U.S. Missile Launcher

Russia says the Pentagon’s European missile defense isn’t so defensive after all. Does it have a point?

Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani arrives in Vienna.

How Close Is Iran to Getting a Nuclear Weapon?

Why Tehran’s breakout time has shrunk—and the technological hurdles that remain.

Russian President Vladimir Putin holds his annual press conference in Moscow.

What’s Behind Russia’s Latest Demands

Moscow has long chafed at Ukraine’s relationship with the West, so why the sudden urgency?

U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin

Kicking Russia Off of SWIFT Might Not Be the Nuclear Option

But additional economic sanctions under study could be more devastating to Moscow than the last ones were.

Maxine Waters, chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services

Why Congress Should Regulate Cryptocurrency Now

The United States has a chance to become a standard-bearer as digital currencies expand.

Supporters of Honduran presidential candidate for the LIBRE Party Xiomara Castro take part in the campaign’s closing event in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, on Nov. 21.

Honduras’s Pivotal Election

The country’s opposition finally has a shot at ousting the party that has ruled since a 2009 coup—if voting isn’t rigged.

Peng Shuai plays at a tennis tournament in New Zealand.

What’s Going on With China’s Missing Tennis Star?

Peng Shuai’s disappearance has mobilized the international community—and puts China’s Olympic dreams under even more scrutiny.

Delegates sit in the action zone as they attend the third day of the 26th U.N. Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland, on Nov. 3.

4 Key Takeaways From COP26

After two weeks of intense climate negotiations, here’s where progress was made—and where negotiations fell short.

Indian paramilitary troopers stand guard during a random search along a street in Srinagar, Indian-administered Kashmir, on Nov. 9, a day after a salesman was shot to death by suspected anti-India militants.

What’s Behind the Latest Violence in Kashmir?

Militants are attacking minorities and outsiders in pursuit of demographic hegemony.

A Chinese customer uses her mobile to scan a QR code while paying with the WeChat app at a local market in Beijing on Sept. 19, 2020.

China’s Social Media Explosion

Now that all the major U.S. platforms have left the country, what does the world’s largest social media market look like?

An aerial picture shows smoke rising from a forest fire outside Berdigestyakh, in Sakha, Siberia.

The Gap Between Talk and Action on Climate Is on Full Display in Glasgow

Environmental disasters are rapidly engulfing the world. Can bureaucracy meet their pace?

A man holds his daughter across from a coal power station in Shanghai.

Why Xi’s Coal Pledge Is a Big Deal

With China out, there’s little investment left for global coal projects.

Meng Wanzhou dressed in a red dress waves as she steps out of a plane with a Chinese flag on the side of it.

Another Win for China’s Hostage Diplomacy

A yearslong diplomatic dispute between China and the West has finally ended.

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