The latest row between Washington and Riyadh over the decision by OPEC+ to cut oil production is not just a dispute over oil prices. It is a more fundamental divide between the U.S. and most of its Middle East security partners over what’s at stake in the war in Ukraine, and how each side sees the current geopolitical map.

a journalist protests israel's crackdown on press freedom

The killing of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh by the Israeli military in May has been widely reported and denounced internationally and regionally. But there has been little international media and public attention paid to the broader problem of intimidation, threats and targeting faced by Palestinian journalists.

Migrants, mostly Venezuelans, walk across the Darien Gap from Colombia into Panama.

More than 7.1 million Venezuelans have now fled the country, making the exodus the largest migration crisis in the world. But while most Venezuelan migrants had previously sought a safe haven in other countries in South America, migration patterns have shifted toward the U.S. under the false hope that things will be better there.


Among the many concerns raised about Russia’s war in Ukraine is that it is using tactics that constitute genocide. But when human rights advocates focus so much on the genocide label, they risk drawing attention away from actions that are as bad or worse, but also easier to punish when called “crimes against humanity.”

a protestor in egypt ahead of cop27

With the United Nations COP 27 Climate Change Conference set to take place in the Egyptian city of Sharm El-Sheikh beginning on Nov. 6, many observers have raised concerns about the country’s human rights and environmental records and what this will mean for the conference as well as climate justice more broadly.

Workers protest in support of striking teachers, outside the National Assembly in Panama City, Panama.

Across the world, there have been more than 8,200 protests and riots in response to the rising cost of living in the first seven months of this year alone. Although the actors involved represent broad, heterogeneous demographics, there are some clear patterns and takeaways that have already emerged.

asylum seekers at the us-mexico border

Between October 2021 and August 2022, U.S. authorities at the U.S.-Mexico border took undocumented migrants into custody more than 2 million times—a record number that has generated nonstop commentary about a “border crisis.” But the numbers fail to convey a dramatic shift in the migrant population over the past nine years.

celebrity activist kim kardashian

Some observers have suggested that celebrities using their status to catalyze political involvement by their fans represents a new kind of celebrity activism, with more of an emphasis on inspiring action than taking action. But is that the case? And can celebrity activists, in inspiring such action, actually make a difference?

Environmental activists in Honduras

At the Summit of the Americas in June, 33 governments of the region pledged to tackle violence against environmental defenders by taking “concrete actions.” But rather than declarations, changing the situation on the ground demands that governments address the drivers of violence and repression against these defenders.

a protestor against human rights abuses in nicaragua

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega has long had a contentious relationship with democratic countries. But in the past few days, Managua took jabs at the EU, the U.S., some Latin American neighbors and even the Vatican. It seems Ortega has settled on a new international strategy to strengthen and perpetuate his hold on power.

an expat in hong kong

Western expatriates in China have shaped perceptions of the country to the point of sometimes overshadowing the country itself, but their experiences exist under a protective umbrella of privilege that is often out of touch with the experiences of so many other foreign-born workers and Chinese citizens working overseas.

Saudi Arabia's King and Crown Prince MBS

Saudi King Salman issued a royal order last week to make his son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, prime minister. While the position is symbolic, it consolidates the crown prince’s de facto control of Saudi Arabia and guarantees him sovereign immunity, staving off legal action against him in a U.S. courtroom.