West Africa

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Snapshot,
Jonathan Zimmerman

Since the 1960s, Americans have split into two camps on sex education: one side wants to teach kids how to make choices about sex, and the other wants to teach them to avoid it. That’s not an issue in most parts of the developing world, where the idea of youth as sexual decision-makers is simply anathema.

Snapshot,
Matt Mossman

It is clearer than ever that democracy in Nigeria is a rather thin veneer. Even so, a couple of factors make the country particularly fertile ground for democracy.

Snapshot,
John Campbell

Americans tend to think of elections as the apex of democracy. But in some cases they are the opposite. In countries with weak democratic cultures and lax rule of law, elections can be destabilizing. Nigeria, which will hold elections next month, is a case in point.

Snapshot,
Emmanuel D'Harcourt

Ebola’s reputation is fearsome. Its horrifying symptoms, quick human-to-human transmission, and exotic locale seem ready-made for a thriller movie. Indeed, in the midst of the largest Ebola virus outbreak ever, a real-time script is emerging. There’s just one problem: the story is at best incomplete and at worst outright wrong

Letter From,
Javier Alvarez

The Liberian government and international organizations have been most focused on containing Ebola, as they should be. The containment policies, however, have come with unintended economic consequences that need to be addressed to avert an even worse crisis.

Snapshot,
Kim Yi Dionne

Fear of the Ebola virus and an out-of-control epidemic have made it easier for governments around the world to focus on security and military responses to public health solutions. Here's why that is a bad thing.

Snapshot,
Seth Kaplan

Life in Nigeria's largest city is changing for the better, offering a potential lesson for struggling states looking to stage a turnaround: mayors and city councils are more likely to embrace positive change than legislatures and presidents -- and far more quickly and effectively.

Snapshot,
Isobel Coleman and Sigrid von Wendel

Boko Haram, whose name roughly translates to “secular education is a sin,” has been committing heinous attacks across Nigeria's north for years, frequently targeting schools. To fight back, Abuja must double down on education even as it rethinks its counterterrorism strategy.

Snapshot,
Jessica Hatcher

What’s particularly disturbing about the latest Ebola outbreak is that the United States has recently developed treatments for the disease. But, despite lobbying from scientists, the drugs have not been put to the test.

Snapshot,
Ricardo Soares De Oliveira

The countries of East Africa are in the early throes of an oil boom, with an unprecedented opportunity for economic development. Unless they avoid the mistakes of those before them, though, the region's governments could easily squander it.

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