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What a Year

[featurecontent] NEED TO KNOW What a Year WORLD [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/486ddb7e-3777-4543-ab44-3536360a3ce9.png"] It was hard to watch Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s recent address to the US Congress and not conclude that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was the most important geopolitical event of 2022. In his address, Zelenskyy compared the war to a struggle between...

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When Dullness Is a Virtue

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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Handshakes and Bombs

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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A Doll’s Tale

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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No Cards Accepted

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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Taunting the Bull

[featurecontent] NEED TO KNOW Taunting the Bull PAKISTAN [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/eaf17bc7-6468-493e-bfe1-86954ffb120a.png"] Pakistani and Indian diplomats recently traded barbs over who is a sponsor of terrorism, the Associated Press wrote. The kerfuffle was important because, as the Council on Foreign Relations explained, the two South Asian countries are nuclear powers that have...

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Nowhere To Go But Up

[featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW Nowhere To Go But Up SOMALIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/15cd6f05-9c0c-4887-86f7-20dad73138cf.png"] Somali government forces and local militias recently won a pitched battle against al-Shabab, the al Qaeda-linked terrorist group that has sown fear and violence throughout the Horn of Africa for years. The allied forces managed to kill around...

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Bidding on Paradise

[featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW Bidding on Paradise INDONESIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/ec0c6f24-24ad-434b-bf1d-56e472da6e67.png"] Indonesia wants to auction off development rights for more than 100 islands spread out over 25,000 acres that offer some of the most biodiverse areas of the planet. The New York arm of auction house Sotheby’s was planning to accept bids...

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Rule By Chaos

[featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW Rule By Chaos PERU [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/7d13971f-19d8-4bc2-ac9e-119d2f349be4.png"] Foreign tourists were recently stranded at Machu Picchu, the 15th-century Incan citadel and UNESCO World Heritage Site, CNN wrote, amid a major political crisis in Peru. Officials declared a state of emergency, reported the Associated Press, shutting public transportation amid...

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Creating a New Chapter

[featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW Creating a New Chapter UKRAINE/ RUSSIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/2aaf5c8d-a4e6-42cf-9dd9-f761d6bfed83.png"] Russian soldiers have been building trenches on the Black Sea coast of the Crimean Peninsula, a Ukrainian territory Russia invaded and illegally annexed almost nine years ago in a move that now clearly presaged the wider war. The trenches...

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White Noise

[featurecontent] [featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW White Noise TUNISIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/1f262cf6-0ed8-4367-aeca-5f0f2b6684d0.png"] The Tunisian General Labor Union (UGTT) recently attacked Tunisian President Kais Saied in the run-up to parliamentary elections on Dec. 17, raising the prospect of the union’s million-plus members going on strike and/or boycotting the polls. Already over the weekend, hundreds took...

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White Rock Politics

NEED TO KNOW White Rock Politics GUINEA-BISSAU [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/c68ca5ff-fb6a-431d-be96-939a6f3c5eae.png"] Braima Seidi Ba and Ricardo Ariza Monje thought they could stuff nearly 2 tons of cocaine into flour bags and elude authorities in Guinea-Bissau, a tiny West African country that serves as a transit point for drugs between Europe, Africa...

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Greening Pains

NEED TO KNOW Greening Pains FRANCE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/d78d9fd2-f0df-4e59-9bd4-334bffdc4974.png"] The European Union plans on banning new non-electric cars starting in 2035. This big shift in the international auto market is part of an effort to reduce new vehicular carbon emissions to reduce the impacts of climate change. As Yale Environment 360...

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Them’s Fightin’ Words

NEED TO KNOW Them’s Fightin’ Words WORLD [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/486ddb7e-3777-4543-ab44-3536360a3ce9.png"] When Twitter first launched, it was celebrated in India as a new kind of town square where free speech, productive dialogues and the exchange of ideas were possible. “What we didn’t realize – because we took it for granted for so...

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The Invisible Victims

NEED TO KNOW The Invisible Victims UKRAINE/ RUSSIA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/2aaf5c8d-a4e6-42cf-9dd9-f761d6bfed83.png"] Earlier this year, doctors in Kherson, Ukraine immediately took action when they heard that Russians were invading their city. They quickly began making fake documents for orphans that claimed the children were too sick to move. “We deliberately wrote false...

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Malthusian Miscalculations

[featurecontent] NEED TO KNOW Malthusian Miscalculations WORLD [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/486ddb7e-3777-4543-ab44-3536360a3ce9.png"] In the late 18th century, British economist Thomas Malthus posited that humankind’s population would outstrip the planet’s capacity to feed everyone. So far, he has been wrong. Many people may not have noticed that the total population of their planet passed the...

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Give War a Chance

NEED TO KNOW Give War a Chance JAPAN [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/ab764327-df98-4918-badd-17c2c79d5685.png"] Japan is planning on increasing defense spending to two percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) over the next five years. That might not seem like a lot in relative terms but it would be double what the country...

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Quitting, Loudly

NEED TO KNOW Quitting, Loudly CHILE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/baed026e-8c02-42fc-8c27-383b8bf87a6c.png"] Irina Karamanos recently resigned from her position as First Lady of Chile. She is still Chilean President Gabriel Boric’s partner. The 33-year-old Santiago-based anthropologist, feminist and political organizer simply didn’t want a public position based on that personal relationship. Writing in the...

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Royal Flush

NEED TO KNOW Royal Flush EUROPE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/f9c83d42-7d43-4e2f-a6d6-f7bf04744b7d.png"] The fifth season of the Netflix show, “The Crown,” depicts the British royal family in the 1990s, a “famously turbulent time” for the late Queen Elizabeth II and her family, wrote People magazine. Three out of four of Elizabeth’s children separated...

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Might and Right

NEED TO KNOW Might and Right UKRAINE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/5abbd8c9-acff-2450-0a94-2b5a85a0848a.png"] Ukraine isn’t letting up. After reclaiming more than half of the territory lost after Russia’s invasion in late February, including the major city of Kherson, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is planning to keep pushing against the Russians on the battlefield and in...

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