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Current political and economic issues succinctly explained.
To help readers better understand the nuances of foreign policy, CFR staff writers and Consulting Editor Bernard Gwertzman conduct in-depth interviews with a wide range of international experts, as well as newsmakers.
Analytical briefs written by's staff on issues of the day with links to the news, analysis, commentary, and primary source materials that put the facts in context.    

Updated: 1 hour 49 min ago

Nicaragua's Grand Canal

April 24, 2015 - 11:20am

Nicaragua’s proposed Grand Canal would be one of the world’s largest engineering projects. Its proponents say it could transform the country’s economy, while critics say it could be an environmental catastrophe.

Japan's Unnecessary Power Struggle: Nuclear vs. Solar

April 24, 2015 - 9:50am

Poised to revive its nuclear industry, Japan should continue to encourage investment in solar as well, which could help meet its energy goals and set an example for the world, writes CFR’s Varun Sivaram.

A Hundred Years On, Armenian Genocide Reverberates

April 22, 2015 - 8:38am

A century after the mass killings and displacement of the Ottoman Empire’s Armenians, four experts reflect on the present-day echoes of those atrocities and the path forward.

The New Saudi Foreign Policy

April 17, 2015 - 11:38am

Saudi Arabia’s intervention in Yemen marks a more assertive foreign policy that is less inclined to rely on the United States and could intensify the sectarian rift with Iran across the region, writes CFR’s Ray Takeyh.

The Future of U.S. Trade Policy

April 10, 2015 - 10:57am

The United States is currently pursuing two of the largest trade deals in history, the Asia-focused Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the U.S.-EU Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), but concerns persist over the effects of trade on employment, inequality, national sovereignty, and safety standards.

Hitting the Restart on U.S.-Latin America Ties

April 8, 2015 - 11:55am

The U.S.-Cuba rapprochement means that leaders at the upcoming Summit of the Americas can focus less on regional tensions and more on issues such as trade, immigration, and security, says CFR’s Shannon K. O’Neil.

Global Health Goal Hits and Misses

April 7, 2015 - 10:32am

A review of the Millennium Development Goals winding down in 2015 offers insights on global health efforts that could inform an even more ambitious UN initiative set to launch this year, writes CFR’s Laurie Garrett. 

After Brazil's Boom, Bust?

April 3, 2015 - 12:22pm

The corruption scandal rocking oil giant Petrobras has far-reaching consequences for Brazil's economy, says Eurasia Group's director for Latin America, João Augusto de Castro Neves.

Tricky Path to Final Iran Nuclear Deal

April 3, 2015 - 12:21pm

The framework deal with Iran surpassed expectations and revived concerns about how such a deal could be implemented, says CFR’s Ray Takeyh.

Chinese Pharma: A Global Health Game Changer?

March 31, 2015 - 9:39am

China’s advancement in the pharmaceutical sector has major implications for global health but it remains constrained by governance and other factors, says CFR’s Yanzhong Huang.