Foreign Policy Blogs

Development

How coal is putting stranglehold on Indian politics

How coal is putting stranglehold on Indian politics

A scandal roiling India’s multi-billion dollar coal industry has made its way into the country’s parliament. A recent report by the Comptroller and Auditor General accuses the government of giving out coal mining contracts to certain organizations using questionable accounting practices. By the report, India has lost out on $34 ...

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Global Health Update: World Water Week, Misoprostol, and Overtreatment

Global Health Update: World Water Week, Misoprostol, and Overtreatment

Clean Drinking Water: The Cure for Malnutrition? This week is World Water Week — which is timely, given the serious cholera outbreak in Sierra Leone and neighboring countries. The focus of this year’s conference is on food security, water scarcity, and ...

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A tale of two African democracies

A tale of two African democracies

After recently covering Ethiopia (here and here), I thought I’d stay in Africa for this article. I want to look at two nations with a wide space between them in terms of geography, culture, political ...

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West Nile, Ebola, and Cholera: Lessons from Three Epidemics

West Nile, Ebola, and Cholera: Lessons from Three Epidemics

In the past month, we’ve seen the United States’ worst outbreak of West Nile Virus, Ebola in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and cholera in Sierra Leone that’s spread to its West African neighbors. What lessons can ...

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Updates on leadership in Romania, Ethiopia

Updates on leadership in Romania, Ethiopia

Recently, important new developments have occurred in Romania and Ethiopia in relation to topics I have recently written about: the impeachment of Romanian President Traian Basescu, and mysterious disappearance of Ethiopian President Meles Zenawi. Here’s a rundown of ...

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The Question of Democracy in Ethiopia

The Question of Democracy in Ethiopia

Ethiopia, the second-most populous country on the African continent (behind only Nigeria), is looked to as a relatively strong and stable presence in a volatile region. Its cooperation is vital to security concerns in the region, especially as a barrier to the spread of radical Islamism and terrorism from neighboring ...

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Free Trade Agreements: Reducing Access to Medicine for the World’s Poor?

Free Trade Agreements: Reducing Access to Medicine for the World’s Poor?

Recently, the European Union and India have been in the news for a near-final free trade agreement, as have the United States and the 10 other countries who are hammering out the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). While these agreements could bolster economies that were weakened by the recession or that are ...

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AIDS 2012: A Snapshot of the Epidemic

AIDS 2012: A Snapshot of the Epidemic

The International AIDS Conference was held last week in Washington, D.C. This was the first time the conference was hosted by an American city in more than 20 years, a ...

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How great it is when what you expect to happen, happens

How great it is when what you expect to happen, happens

So often the news, and commentary on it, focuses on when things go wrong. Things going wrong usually involve drama and confrontation, which makes for interesting stories. I am have been guilty of contributing to this trend myself in commenting on when democracy goes wrong, i.e., election fraud and impeachments. But ...

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Concerns over democratic progress in Romania and Bulgaria

Concerns over democratic progress in Romania and Bulgaria

One of my primary interests regarding government is how countries transition to democracy from another form of rule, and why some places seem to have more success with this than others. For countries formerly under the influence of the Soviet Union, some have seen democracy establish a strong foothold, whereas ...

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U.S. Financial Support for Democratic Transition in the Middle East

U.S. Financial Support for Democratic Transition in the Middle East

Currently, a key question for U.S. policymakers is how to engage with and/or support new governments in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. For those of you interested in the topic of U.S. foreign assistance to the Middle East, I strongly recommend a new Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED) paper,

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In the News: Family Planning Gets a Boost & the US’s Effect on Polio and HIV

In the News: Family Planning Gets a Boost & the US’s Effect on Polio and HIV

In global health news this week, I have updates to previously covered topics. World leaders have committed money and support to family planning, spearheaded by the Gates Foundation. The CIA’s fake vaccination program, part of efforts to ferret out Osama Bin Laden, has contributed to a ban on polio vaccinations ...

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In Case You Missed It: A State Department Program for Leaders in New Democracies

In Case You Missed It: A State Department Program for Leaders in New Democracies

This week, the State Department held a “virtual ribbon cutting” for a new initiative, Leaders Engaged in New Democracies (LEND). LEND will help leaders in fledgling democracies connect with leaders who have experienced democratic transition in their own countries. As Voice of America reports, the initiative will facilitate conversations ...

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Romanian Parliament Impeaches President

Romanian Parliament Impeaches President

  It appears Paraguay (as I covered last month) is not the only country embroiled in an impeachment scandal. Last Friday July 6 Romania’s parliament voted to impeach President Traian Basescu, who has violated the Constitution and acted as a dictator according to opponents ...

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FDA Approves At-Home HIV Test

FDA Approves At-Home HIV Test

This week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration finally approved a rapid, over-the-counter, and at-home test for HIV. The test, called OraQuick and made by OraSure, allows people to check their serostatus in the convenience and ...

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