Foreign Policy Blogs

Regions

Love, Redemption, and Soccer

The Boston Globe has a powerful story about a soccer field in Rwanda. Here are the first two paragraphs, but read the whole thing: In Kingston on Boston's South Shore, the Jonathan Rizzo Soccer Field with its bright lights and bleachers is a fitting memorial to the young man who loved the game and played […]

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Casual Friday: Central Asia's great games

Casual Friday: Central Asia's great games

I was looking for a Central Asian game that didn't have to do with the “Great Game” in Central Asia.  Instead of one, I found many–or really, Amira did.  Her blog, The Golden Road to Samarqand (now added to Blogroll at right), has a series on Central Asian bone games.  Since her account is part intercultural journey and part — the Hoyle's of […]

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Civil Unions in Mexico City

A new law took effect in Mexico City on March 16th allowing same-sex couples to unite in civil unions, giving them many of the social benefits such as property, pension and inheritance rights that are enjoyed by heterosexual married couples.  The civil union law does not, however, allow the couples to adopt children.  The Catholic […]

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Kyrgyzstan: Tension at Manas AFB

Kyrgyzstan: Tension at Manas AFB

Bruce Pannier writes about current tensions over Manas Air Force Base near Bishkek for RFE/RL. With the Kharsi-Khanabad AFB closed in Uzbekistan, Manas is more important than before.  One thing I did not realize right away: the USAF shares this airport with Kyrgyzstan's private use, which has to add to the tension there.  In September 2006, […]

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Uzbekistan-Pakistan bilateral diplomacy

Uzbekistan-Pakistan bilateral diplomacy

The reason for warmer ties between Pakistan and Uzbekistan were noted by Sanobar Shermatova at Ferghana.ru: Where Tashkent is concerned, the Afghani civil strife and relations with Pakistan are inseparable from the problem of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. Advancement of relations with these two countries made for a weakening of Islamic gunmen. Tashkent and Islamabad […]

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South Africa and the Zim Crisis

The situation in Zimbabwe continues to deteriorate. Another opposition leader has told of her travails and worries for her health if she is not allowed to leave the country and the governor of the country's central bank has announced a crackdown on illegal fuel dealers in hopes of stemming one source of the country's rampant inflation. […]

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Mongolia: Japan aids enterprise development

Mongolia: Japan aids enterprise development

Mongolia's strong relationship with Japan received a new boost this month when Japan announced a new USD 1.5 million project to aid urban migrants in Bayanhogar, Choyr, and Erdenat.  Mongolia's population has been urbanizing rapidly.  Many of these new urbanites live in temporary settlements and need employment and business opportunities.  Japan's new grant provides funds, technical support and guidance […]

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The Zim Meltdown

Robert Mugabe threatens to expel diplomats who, in his estimation provide “support” for the opposition. Sean McCormick, a spokesman for the State Department, declares that the United States holds Mugabe “personally responsible” for attacks on opposition leaders.  Mugabe increasingly relies on “hit squads” to carry out his dirty work. Zimbabwe's judiciary still hints at independence […]

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Tajikistan courts energy investment

Tajikistan courts energy investment

Several development banks have recently come to Tajikistan, planning to invest in Tajikstan's energy security‚ which Tajikistan really needs.  Last year, energy distribution problems precipitated a closure of Dushanbe's bakeries; the resulting bread riot (really a woman's sit-down demonstration) underscored the past-due need for energy infrastructure investment in Tajikistan.  At neweurasia.net, Gulru has written this winter has been […]

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Africa Travel

This past Sunday's New York Times travel section featured Africa. It includes pieces on West Africa, featuring Senegal, night-time in South Africa's Mountain Zebra National Park, and following the path of David Livingstone's quest for what would come to be known as Victoria Falls as well as much more.

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'tis Spring: Caspian Outbreak of Avian H5N1

'tis Spring: Caspian Outbreak of Avian H5N1

See this map of bird migration patterns, courtesy of BBC: then imagine that these lines are kind of blurred, because birds, after all, do not read maps and do not march in single file.  Instead, these lines demarcate a range of individual flights that are a little more widespread.  Then consider that birds bypass whole […]

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Mbeki on the Links Between Crime and Racism

Thabo Mbeki recently wrote in ANC Today about the links between the role that crime plays in the country's psyche and the still percolating racism that simmers beneath the surface of the ociety.  The country's whites too often ignore the connection. Money excerpt: “For this section of our population every reported incident of crime communicates the frightening and expected […]

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Helen Zille, the Democratic Alliance and National Politics

Cape Town mayor Hellen Zille has announced that she will be running for the Democratic Alliance's (DA) national leadership title, which will then put her in place to be the DA's candidate for the presidency. Zille hopes to replace Tony Leon, who announced last year that he would not seek another term as party leader. Zille […]

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Bush Concludes Mexico Trip

Bush Concludes Mexico Trip

The impact of President Bush's Mexico visit remains to be seen, but while some are hopeful for immigration reform and increased emphasis on the region during the remainder of his presidency, expectations are not very high.  Though some see Mexican President Calderon as a potential counter to leftist Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez, it is not […]

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Nomadic architecture: the felt home (not yurt)

Nomadic architecture: the felt home (not yurt)

One strength of the English language has been its incredible ability to assimilate any noun from any language–and then, through mispronunciation, claim it for itself.  This characteristic is undisputably useful, but can also institutionalize translation errors.  The yurt is not a yurt.  Yurt means “homeland”.  Wikipedia says: In Kazakh (and Uyghur) the term for the structure is kiyiz uy (киіз үй‚ lit. […]

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