World

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Inside North Korea’s Literary Fiction Factory

With colorful rhetoric about dotards and nuclear buttons, North Korean propaganda is attracting attention around the world. Outside observers can now easily access some of this propaganda by visiting regime-sponsored websites. These have, in turn, spawned foreign feeds like the excellent KCNA Watch media aggregator and satirical sites such as “Kim Jong Un Looking at...

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Deportees in Mexico Tell of Disrupted Lives, Families and Communities

Ray was born in Mexico and moved to the United States with family members at age 10. He told me in an interview in 2014, “I’m just a regular American like everyone else.” In middle school, Ray (a pseudonym to protect his identity) learned the Declaration of Independence and memorized all the presidents in order....

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Is a Unified Korea Possible?

North and South Korean athletes will march under one flag during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in South Korea. The “Korean Unification Flag” is both a highly symbolic marker of reconciliation and a reminder of a divided Korea, a condition that has lasted since 1945. As a scholar of East Asian...

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Has Venezuela Become a Totalitarian Regime?

So far, the new year has not gone well for Venezuela. Neither did 2017 or 2016, of course, but it turns out a bad crisis can always get worse. January 2018 began with riots and looting of grocery stores across the country, a sign of pervasive hunger. Then, on Jan. 12, a crowd stormed a...

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Beyond #MeToo, Brazilian Women Rise Up Against Racism and Sexism

Women’s empowerment recently got a big boost at the Golden Globes, but the United States isn’t the only place having a feminist revival. In 2015, two years before the #MeToo campaign got Americans talking about sexual harassment, Brazilian feminists launched #MeuPrimeiroAssedio, or #MyFirstHarrassment. In its first five days, the hashtag racked up 82,000 tweets detailing...

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Why the Sartorial Choices of Salafi Clerics Sparked a Debate on Morality in Nigeria

The innocuous photos of two Nigerian Islamic clerics shopping and relaxing in London sparked a fierce debate on social media platforms in northern Nigeria in early December 2017. The photos were quite unremarkable. One showed the two men sitting on a park bench; another showed them in a clothing store wearing cowboy hats. In both,...

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Mattis: Pentagon to Continue Coalition with Pakistan

Defense Secretary James Mattis said last Thursday that the United States will continue to work with Pakistan to coordinate military supply routes needed to combat terror networks in Afghanistan, despite the Trump administration’s earlier remarks that it would suspend funds for security assistance to Pakistan until the country takes action against the Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani...

Iran: a New Kind of Protest Movement Is Taking Hold
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Iran: a New Kind of Protest Movement Is Taking Hold

When the news broke about a protest in Mashhad, Iran’s second largest city and a stronghold for the country’s religious hardliners, in the waning days of 2017 no one thought it would lead to a national rally against the government. But since then the demonstrations have rapidly spread to Iran’s other provinces and have left...