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How America’s Flaws Become Russia’s Opportunity

Putin’s Russia is exploiting the flaws of American democracy. To do so, Russia is forging key inroads with developing countries.

Qaboos to Haitham: Oman’s Uncharacteristically Smooth Transition of Power

Oman’s recent transition of power was surprisingly peaceful thanks to a few key factors and limited expectations for the new Sultan.

Oil and Stability: Good Enough to Keep the US in the Gulf?

For decades, the safe transportation of oil from the Persian Gulf has been a major security concern for the United States. But there are reasons for the U.S. to reevaluate whether it truly needs to invest military resources in protecting it.

Burkina Faso, Five Years After “Revolution 2.0”

In 2014, following 27 years of rule by President Blaise Compaoré, Burkinabe citizens took to the streets in protest of Compaoré’s decision to seek an extension of presidential term limits and resulting in his resignation. Five years after the protests, Burkina Faso has since held the national election that activists demanded. Nevertheless, challenges continue to test the country’s democratic development, including issues and delays surrounding key country-wide decisions, insecurity in the Sahel, and weak rule of law. International organizations need to capitalize on progress made to date and continue supporting democratic growth in Burkina Faso.

Walled Gardens: Google’s Misstep Highlights Threats to Internet Freedom

On Tuesday, December 11th, 2018, Google CEO Sundar Pichai found himself testifying in front of the House Judiciary Committee. Subjects discussed ranged from artificial intelligence to political bias to manipulation of search results. Project DragonFly was also on the table, though Pichai was quick to dismiss the endeavor. He told the committee that Google has…

Venezuela and the Risk of “Democratic” Coup D’états

Venezuela continues to face political and economic turmoil. The Chavista regimes of Venezuelan Presidents Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro cracked down on the media and political opposition. The economic situation in the country is, if possible, even more dire, with the International Monetary Fund recently suggesting that inflation rates could reach one million percent this…

Transcript and Audio: Charged Affairs’ Conversation with Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla, 2010–2014

Costa Rica is currently between the two rounds of its 2018 presidential elections, to be decided on Sunday, April 1. In an historic electoral cycle, the country’s traditional parties have been left out of the second round. Meanwhile, Mr. Fabricio Alvarado Munoz, a journalist and Christian music singer-turned-politician, came out ahead of the first electoral…

Engaging China to Address the North Korean Security Threat

As Washington seeks to achieve more favorable security conditions in the upcoming negotiations with North Korea, the Trump administration must continue to maintain pressure on Pyongyang. However, the administration misses a crucial part of the North Korean challenge: China. By working together, Washington and Beijing can exert economic pressure that might coerce North Korea to…

The INF Treaty Must Be Saved

The Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty has been in danger of collapsing in recent years. Russia has been developing a new ground-launched cruise missile that contravenes the treaty, and NATO has raised concerns over the deployment of Russian missile systems to the exclave of Kaliningrad. Russia asserts that it is responding to the deployment of…

U.S. Aid Cuts to UN Agency Signal Shortcomings of Trump Foreign Policy

The Trump Administration generated headlines with the recent decision to withhold $65 million in funding from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). While Trump’s tweets and comments to the press would suggest that this is retaliation for Palestinian protests to U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, it is important to…

Securing an Olympic Legacy

Pyeongchang, a rural county in one of the poorest regions in South Korea, recently hosted 60,000 security forces, alongside an influx of security infrastructure that included such state-of-the-art military technology as interceptor drones, aircraft equipped with facial recognition scanners, and sensor systems that detect various chemical warfare agents and explosive threats. Meanwhile, South Korean police…

A New Direction for US China Policy

This series has so far been critical of China’s aggressive actions, both geopolitically and geoeconomically. However, China has done much good for which it should be lauded. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has continually promoted Former premier Wen Jiabao’s peaceful rise by refusing strong-arm tactics against Taiwan, not attacking any other South China Sea territory…