Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is unbothered by spotlights shaming him. The only way he'll step down is if he believes it will burnish his image.
President Obama wanted to focus on job creation. But dramatic unrest in Tunisia, Egypt, and across the Arab world, shaky governments in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Lebanon, and potential major developments in China and North Korea mean Mr. Obama's priorities in 2011 may not be ones of his choosing.
France hosts Tunisia's largest expatriate community. Having long lived in political silence, Tunisians here are glued to Arabic TV and debating if greater democracy or regional strife will unfold.
The Tunisia uprising exposed the faulty assumption of US policy in the Middle East – that stability can be bought at the cost of freedom. Even as the domestic political climate pulls Obama away from foreign involvement, US support for democracy in the Arab world is more important than ever.
Al Jazeera's release this week of the so-called 'Palestine papers' – a collection of secret documents from the past decade of Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations – revealed a US suggestion made in 2008 that Palestinian refugees be permanently resettled in Chile and Argentina. The disclosure was a slap in the face to the many Palestinian refugees and descendants – the UN Relief and Works Agency estimates at least 4.7 million worldwide – hoping to eventually return to what is now Israel. But it wasn't the first time the idea of permanent resettlement has been floated. Here are some of the countries proposed as permanent resettlement locations.
Advocates of military strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities assume that a nuclear-armed Iran would be able to blackmail its neighbors. History suggests that's wrong.
A pair of NY Times reporters offer a damning indictment of the CIA’s failed war on nuclear proliferation.
President Obama wants to secure loose material for nuclear weapons by 2013. He has made progress, but success depends on countries disclosing sensitive information.
Russia lashed out Tuesday at Western leaders who voiced their concern over Monday's conviction of Russian tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky.
In many ways, 2010 is a year you may want to relegate to the filing cabinet quickly. It began with a massive earthquake in Haiti and wound down with North Korea once again being an enfant terrible – bizarrely trying to conduct diplomacy through brinkmanship. In between came Toyota recalls and egg scares, pat downs at airports and unyielding unemployment numbers, too little money in the Irish treasury and too many bedbugs in American sheets. Oil gushed from the floor of the Gulf of Mexico for three months, mocking the best intentions of man and technology to stop it, while ash from a volcano in Iceland darkened Europe temporarily as much as its balance sheets. Yet not all was gloomy. The winter Olympics in Canada and the World Cup in South Africa dazzled with their displays of athletic prowess and national pride, becoming hearths around which the world gathered. In Switzerland, the world's largest atom smasher hurled two protons into each other at unfathomable speeds. Then came the year's most poignant moment – the heroic and improbable rescue of 33 miners from the clutches of the Chilean earth. There were many transitions, too – the return of the Republicans in Washington and the Tories in Britain, the scaling back of one war (Iraq) and the escalation of another (Afghanistan), the fall of some powers (Greece) and rise of others (China, Germany, Lady Gaga). To get the new year off to the right start, we decided to ask various thinkers for one idea each to make the world a better place in 2011. We plumbed poets and political figures, physicists and financiers, theologians and novelists. Some of the ideas are provocative, others quixotic. Some you will agree with, others you won't. But in the modest quest to stir a discussion – from academic salons to living rooms to government corridors – we offer these 25 ideas.