As the northwestern city of Rio Branco prepares for the World Cup, some wonder whether its failed bid in 2009 to be one of the host cities was a blessing in disguise.
The host team, Brazil, faces off against Croatia in the first match of the World Cup today.
The idea that Colombia and Mexico face similar drug wars has shaped US policy there for years. But differences - from geography to the state's ability to respond - call for a different approach.
Public school teachers in Brazil often work at more than one school in order to cobble together a full-time pay check.
Most public school students in Brazil are in class for about four hours each day. In an effort to get more kids studying full-days, cities like Rio are rushing to build more schools.
Primary school quality in the world's No. 7 economy ranks below impoverished Haiti. But galvanizing Brazilians to boost education for all is no easy task.
Some say Mexico needs to learn from its experience in Michoacán by recognizing it has no reliable partners among state and local forces, who are often in cahoots with drug gangs.
Sales in Brazil are soaring ahead of the World Cup, as Brazilians splurge on expensive sets to watch all the matches in the comfort of their homes.