FA Today
Does Affirmative Action Work? Does Affirmative Action Work?
Lessons From Around 
the World
By Graham K. Brown and Arnim Langer

Americans tend to think of affirmative action as a uniquely American institution: an outgrowth of the civil rights movement, intended primarily to improve economic opportunities for African Americans, who have continued to face obstacles to equality long after the Jim Crow era of segregation and overt discrimination. And it is true that as part of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the U.S. government began to implement affirmative action policies. State agencies and public universities soon followed suit. As these programs expanded to assist other groups, such as women, Native Americans, and Hispanic Americans, affirmative action began to seem like a strategy specifically suited to a Western liberal democracy struggling to reconcile its ideals with its...

Making Up Isn't Hard to Do Making Up Isn't Hard to Do
How Japan and South Korea Can Move On
By Jennifer Lind

Relations between Japan and South Korea after World War II have ranged from cool to toxic. Recently, South Korean President Park Geun-hye refused to plan a summit with her Japanese counterpart unless Tokyo made concessions on their historical disputes. An agreement in December to share military intelligence (but only indirectly, via the United States) merely revealed their reluctance, rather than eagerness, to work together. The tension between these two countries, which seem to have so much to gain from closer ties, puzzles many observers and frustrates Washington as it seeks to foster closer trilateral...

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A Strategic Seaport A Strategic Seaport
Is Pakistan Key to China's Energy Supremacy?
By Syed Fazl-e-Haider

A seaport in southwest Pakistan may hold the key to China’s energy supremacy. At least, that’s what China hopes. The Gwadar port, which China has built and will operate in the province of Balochistan, is situated near the Strait of Hormuz, a major oil-shipping lane that can serve as an energy corridor from western China through Pakistan to the Persian Gulf. Beijing’s pivot to Pakistan is a substantial one. The story goes back to 2008, when Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf proposed a railroad and an oil pipeline to link Gwadar to the Kashi port in Xinjiang—allowing China to take advantage of the shortest possible route to the Middle East. In exchange, Pakistan would get an influx of Chinese investment. Indeed, in 2014, the Chinese government committed to spending $45.6 billion over the next six years to build the China–Pakistan Economic Corridor, which will include the construction of highways, railways, and natural gas and oil pipelines connecting China to the Middle East. China’s stake in Gwadar will also allow it to expand its influence in the Indian Ocean, a vital route for oil transportation between the Atlantic and the...

Virunga's White Savior Complex Virunga's White Savior Complex
How the Film Distorts the Politics and People of Congo
By Maria Eriksson Baaz, Didier Gondola, Esther Marijnen, Judith Verweijen, Paul Katembo Vikanza, Koen Vlassenroot, Tatiana Carayannis, Kevin Dunn, James Fairhead, Stephan Hochleithner, Chrispin Mvano, Eric Mwamba, and Blaise Muhire

It is easy to see why the Oscar-nominated film Virunga has received such widespread acclaim. Shot in the majestic Virunga National Park, an endangered World Heritage site situated in the conflict-ridden eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, the film draws attention to the threats posed to the park’s wildlife by both the British oil exploration company SOCO International and rebel groups. Consequently, appreciation for the film becomes confounded with support for the noble cause of saving Virunga. But the resulting sense of moral righteousness obscures several serious problems with the documentary: it omits crucial aspects of the violent colonial origins of Virunga, and it marginalizes the voices of the people who live in and around the park. As a result, the film perpetuates racial stereotypes and oversimplifies politics and conflict in...

FROM YESTERDAYfrom yesterday
  The Geopolitics of Chinese Aid
  Mapping Beijing’s Funding in the Pacific
  By Philippa Brant
  Crude Calculus
  Latin America's Risky Bet on Pricey Oil
  By Christopher Sabatini
  Iran's Yemen Play
  What Tehran Wants—And What It Doesn't
  By Alex Vatanka
  Zambia's Uncertain Future
  Political Rifts and Economic Challenges in Lusaka
  By Vito Laterza and Patience Mususa
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