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Inviting Locusts

NEED TO KNOW Inviting Locusts GUATEMALA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/db73a011-021f-466b-9b89-77add155facc.png"] Guatemalan authorities recently detained two Americans for attempting to steal scores of Mayan artifacts – “stone spheres, mortars, sphinxes, yokes, anthropomorphic figures – loaded on a truck,” according to the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project. The arrests were an unfortunately...

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The Scramble

NEED TO KNOW The Scramble CYPRUS [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/880db9d5-aa98-4e2b-a4f2-fec3d1a85ab9.png"] As Russians flee their homeland in order to avoid conscription and the trenches in Ukraine where the Russian army has suffered devastating losses, neighboring countries like Georgia, Kazakhstan, Finland and Norway have tightened visa restrictions to prevent a flood of draft...

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On The Fence

NEED TO KNOW On The Fence BULGARIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/1eb16295-db95-4ff1-8e0b-8bdc4e81cb9c.png"] The Schengen Area is one of the European Union’s most popular innovations: A travel zone where citizens of 26 nations can cross each other’s borders without passports. It was a big deal, then, when the European Commission, the EU’s executive...

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It’s the Little Things

NEED TO KNOW It’s the Little Things QATAR [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/eb313eb2-840e-4e71-8167-30beddab851f.png"] The World Cup was supposed to be Qatar’s crowning achievement, its entry into the club of the world’s most advanced and exclusive destinations for world-class sports events and entertainment. Now the event might go down in history as the...

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The Payoff

NEED TO KNOW The Payoff WORLD [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/486ddb7e-3777-4543-ab44-3536360a3ce9.png"] Reducing carbon emissions that cause climate change is possibly the struggle of our lifetime. Telling developing nations that they can’t use fossil fuels to grow their economies is unfair and unrealistic, however, as Time magazine explained. Developed nations in North America,...

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Roadblocks for a Generation

NEED TO KNOW Roadblocks for a Generation TAIWAN [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/dab1143a-8514-4f63-8098-bd36050d9680.png"] While Taiwan debates expanding its democracy, observers are debating whether China will be soon launching a takeover attempt against the country, which Chinese leaders view as a renegade province. Taiwanese voters head to the polls on Nov. 26 to vote...

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The Little Country That Could

New Zealand Map

NEED TO KNOW The Little Country That Could NEW ZEALAND [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/35e498e9-3807-40bd-bf6c-8c9506c3b2cf.png"] Few people on Earth enjoy clear night skies. Light pollution obscures the skies over where 80 percent of the planet’s population lives. In New Zealand, however, National Geographic reported, the country is on track to become one...

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The Wizard of Oz

NEED TO KNOW The Wizard of Oz RUSSIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/db8acf88-8b4f-4b1c-bf9a-1e71d4eee94b.png"] More than 100,000 Russian troops have died since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine, according to American estimates that Agence France-Presse cited. The same experts estimated that Ukraine likely has suffered a similar number of losses. Ukraine...

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Voting with the Feet

NEED TO KNOW Voting with the Feet NICARAGUA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b1f74445-4296-4463-949d-e92d66c3e3b1.png"] Jose Galeano, 35, has a degree in veterinary medicine. In his home country of Nicaragua, however, where poverty, corruption, and the suppression of political dissent are commonplace, he has worked as a farm laborer. So recently he took out...

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Waving Bye-Bye

NEED TO KNOW Waving Bye-Bye EGYPT [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/180d3d63-0093-422e-a6d2-b3d9896f0053.png"] Shortly before Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi hosted world leaders for the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27) in the Egyptian city of Sharm el-Sheikh, he delivered a scornful message to his constituents. He asked them to stop having...

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Rock, Meet Hard Place

NEED TO KNOW Rock, Meet Hard Place NEPAL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/a519ab91-7b87-4ef0-a6df-573c03bc0303.png"] Nepali soldiers were recently searching for survivors after an earthquake struck the western region of Doti. At least six people died in the 5.6-magnitude quake, a tragedy but nonetheless relatively good news in a country where nearly 9,000 perished...

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Out With the Old

NEED TO KNOW Out With the Old KAZAKHSTAN [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/d52e63cf-06bb-47d0-b573-377bff5ae37c.png"] The president of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, appears to be enacting a series of reforms that promise to reorganize the country’s politics and its economy as former Soviet republics navigate the instability following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. On the political front,...

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A Game of Chicken

NEED TO KNOW A Game of Chicken RUSSIA/ UKRAINE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/2aaf5c8d-a4e6-42cf-9dd9-f761d6bfed83.png"] As Russian forces retreated from Kherson and Ukrainian forces poured into the strategic southern Ukrainian city, one could be forgiven for wondering if the world was seeing the beginning of the end of the war. Six weeks ago,...

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No Country for Old Men

NEED TO KNOW No Country for Old Men MALAYSIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/053b35ef-03dc-4aeb-b916-fe602f4772eb.jpg"] Will the biggest group of young voters in Malaysian history decide whether or not a nonagenarian will become the Southeast Asian country’s prime minister? That’s the lingering question in Malaysia these days following a recent announcement by the country’s...

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‘The Hungriest Place on Earth’

NEED TO KNOW ‘The Hungriest Place on Earth’ SOMALILAND [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/3acb250d-c8fb-ab06-e014-2db36946b098.png"] Photographer Misan Harriman was openly distressed after journeying to Somaliland to document how four years of drought – the worst in 40 years – has precipitated a food crisis in the region that is an independent part of...

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Remaking the Wall

NEED TO KNOW Remaking the Wall CHINA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/198e41ed-dcee-4398-8f9e-af928160f105.png"] Chinese Communist Party Congresses are usually scripted affairs that befit totalitarian states. Delegates are expected to reach decisions that leaders have already prescribed. Surprises are discouraged. So the bizarre episode where a functionary escorted the 79-year-old former president of China, Hu...

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Peace in the Household

NEED TO KNOW Peace in the Household BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] Brazilian truckers and other supporters of conservative President Jair Bolsonaro blocked roads in the South American country recently in protest at the victory of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the leftist ex-president who served previously from 2003 to 2010,...

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When War Is On The Ballot

NEED TO KNOW When War Is On The Ballot UKRAINE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/0108d265-986a-4f2e-735e-e3dde06919f5.png"] Western arms and financial support have been vital to Ukraine’s successes on the battlefield against Russia. But Western politicians who are unenthusiastic about supporting Ukraine are arguably gaining power around the world. The prospect of international support for...

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A Difficult Friendship

NEED TO KNOW A Difficult Friendship SAUDI ARABIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/cb30405d-bd4c-40bf-a603-50857b6bc532.png"] Saudi Arabia recently told American officials that Iran was planning an attack on the desert kingdom. The intelligence came at a peculiar time, as the Associated Press explained. American officials are peeved at Saudi Arabia for reneging on an alleged...

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The Empire Strikes Back

NEED TO KNOW The Empire Strikes Back UNITED KINGDOM [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/db250264-45f9-48fa-be6e-ab4d2ef0d6a5.png"] Until 1947, the UK lorded over the Indian subcontinent, stealing its wealth and subjugating its people as the oh-so-superior colonial master. No one even a decade ago would have ever thought that a man whose ancestors were part of...

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