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Contributor PerspectivesDec 30, 2019 | 10:30 GMT
A photograph of "The Family of Henry VIII: An Allegory of the Tudor Succession," a 16th century painting attributed to Lucas de Heere.
The U.K. May Find That Getting to Brexit Was the Easy Part
Plenty of pundits have weighed in on the electoral implications of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's recent landslide victory, but fewer have addressed its strategic implications for the United Kingdom's position in the world. In part, I suspect, this is because there are few obvious analogies for the political crisis Brexit has precipitated, and, without historical comparison cases, forecasting too easily becomes guesswork. There is, though, one suggestive parallel for what Britain is going through. Extrapolating possible futures from an isolated analogy is open to obvious objections; however, it is surely better than working without comparisons of any kind -- and it prompts some sobering thoughts.
Contributor PerspectivesDec 25, 2019 | 10:00 GMT
Whether and how people celebrate Christmas is clearly a complicated affair, bearing only a subtle relationship to Christianity itself.
The Geopolitics of Christmas
Whether and how people celebrate Christmas is clearly a complicated affair, bearing only a subtle relationship to Christianity itself. The contemporary, increasingly international version of Christmas is less a religious festival than a celebration of affluence, modernity, and above all Westernness. Without anyone willing it, Christmas has become part of a package of Western soft power.
AssessmentsNov 17, 2019 | 20:26 GMT
This photo shows a smoldering police station in Isfahan, Iran, the result of violent protests against fuel price increases.
Iran Scrambles To Manage the Fallout of a Fuel Price Hike
Widespread protests gripped Iran for a third straight day following a government-mandated fuel price increase of 50 percent and fuel rationing program introduced Nov. 15. Demonstrators protesting the price hikes have burned and looted more than 100 banks and shops across the country, barricaded highways and massed in the Grand Bazaar, a major cultural center in Tehran. Thus far, the government has responded by shutting down the country's internet and instituting violent crackdowns. 
SITUATION REPORTOct 2, 2019 | 16:35 GMT
Iran: Rouhani-Trump Talks Did Not Happen Because of Sanctions Relief Demand
U.S. President Donald Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had agreed to a French-proposed four-point plan that would have seen talks between the two leaders on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in September, but the meeting did not happen because Rouhani insisted Trump lift sanctions first, Politico reported Oct. 2.
Contributor PerspectivesJul 25, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
Fighters with the U.S.-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces guard women and children waiting to leave the al-Hol camp in northeastern Syria on June 3, 2019.
The Syrian Civil War Grinds On, Largely Forgotten
While the United States and Iran risk all-out war with their game of chicken in the Persian Gulf, their proxy war is still playing out in Syria. Iran's ally, Syrian President Bashar al Assad, won the war two years ago, but his victory was incomplete. Al Assad secured his throne, but two large swathes of the country remain beyond his reach. The Turkish army and rebel militants control the northwest. The mainly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces, supported by a small but unspecified number of American, British and French special forces, hold the area northeast of the Euphrates River near the Syria-Turkey-Iraq border triangle. Al Assad has said he will not give up the struggle until both areas revert to his dominion. The only other part of the country under foreign occupation is the Golan Heights, but Al Assad is in no position to expel the Israelis.
AssessmentsJul 22, 2019 | 22:04 GMT
Protesters clash with police after taking part in an anti-extradition bill on July 22, 2019, in Hong Kong.
In Hong Kong, Demonstrators and Officials Are on a Collision Course
Violence in Hong Kong escalated further July 19-21 as extremists on both sides engaged, or attempted to engage, in attacks. On July 19, police arrested a pro-independence group member and accused him of making the explosive TATP. While protests planned for July 20 and July 21 went off peacefully, after the Civil Human Rights Front rally the evening of July 21 a group of several hundred protesters continued on to the building housing the Beijing government's Liaison Office in western Hong Kong and vandalized the facade with spray paint and eggs. Shortly afterward a mob assaulted anti-government protesters returning home on the opposite side of Hong Kong from the earlier demonstration. Images from the scene shared on social media showed men attacking protesters with wooden rods as they arrived at the Yuen Long railway station. The assault injured dozens, leaving at least one in serious condition. Security in Hong Kong is
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