The COVID-19 pandemic has made everyone much better versed in basic epidemiological modeling than they were eight months ago. We have all familiarized ourselves with exhaustive data collection and the analysis of epidemic curves based on prior crises, the reproduction rates of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the daily influx of new cases. Yet, even for professional epidemiologists, the question of when this pandemic will end has no simple answer. Certainty is a luxury rarely afforded to scientists, and this is particularly true in the world of public health. However, we do know that pandemics do not attack indiscriminately. While we […]
United States Archive
After more than a month of negotiations between the Taliban and the Afghan government, progress toward a peace agreement remains slow. The key unknown variable is whether the United States has an appetite for staying involved in the long grind of overseeing a peace process that must reconcile two divergent views of Afghanistan’s future—which can only be answered by the winner of this week’s presidential election. The Taliban recognize this, too, and made a foray into American politics last month, announcing their desire to see President Donald Trump win a second term, before hastily backtracking. The reason for the Taliban’s […]
As Americans cast their ballots Tuesday, and indeed for the millions who already have, they are voting for the future not just of their own country, but of the open world that the United States helped create. A distinctive element of this global order, particularly since the fall of the Berlin Wall, has been the removal of many restrictions on cross-border flows of goods, money, ideas and even people. Under every American president since the Cold War, until Donald Trump, the United States championed global integration as a motor of prosperity, a bulwark of peace and—at least implicitly—a source of […]
Google recently announced it will enforce rules enabling it to take a 30 percent cut from app purchases in its Google Play Store starting next September, a controversial revenue-generating policy that Apple also uses in its App Store. Both tech giants are facing anti-trust lawsuits over the practice. Also this fall, Ukrainian authorities ordered Apple to remove the apps of Russian propaganda outlets from its store, which Russia’s Foreign Ministry called “another manifestation of the Ukrainian authorities’ repressive policy towards the media.” The move follows other actions by the Ukrainian government in recent years to restrict Russian state media outlets’ […]
Could Biden Deliver on the Promise of a Better U.S. Middle East Policy?
Editor’s Note: Every Monday, Managing Editor Frederick Deknatel highlights a major unfolding story in the Middle East, while curating some of the best news and analysis from the region. Subscribers can adjust their newsletter settings to receive Middle East Memo by email every week. I watched Barack Obama win America’s presidency from Damascus. I still remember when the race was called, on whatever international news network was carried on satellite TV in Syria, sometime in the middle of the night. Seven months later, Obama traveled to Cairo, to give a major speech to the Arab world. Although its promise of […]