US-China tensions have bled into a debate over TikTok, data collection, and social media apps

Last week’s congressional hearing on the alleged security risk posed by TikTok put into stark contrast the gap between the app’s fans and critics. The push in Washington to ban the social media app comes against the backdrop of increasing U.S.-China tensions over technology and the economic and political influence it generates.

In West Africa, coups have led to a debate on the strength of democracy and elections.

The European Union and U.S. often fixate on democratic elections as the basic foundation of political legitimacy. But in West African states such as Mali and Guinea, elections have led to contested outcomes or enabled authoritarian power grabs, profoundly unsettling the hopes of many in and outside the region for a more stable future.

The US-Iran nuclear deal may be renewed thanks to negotiations with the International Atomic Energy Association.

Earlier this month, Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency reached an agreement to reestablish certain transparency measures at select nuclear sites. Amid growing concern over Iran’s expanding nuclear activities, the deal is a positive step that bodes well for international efforts to contain Iran’s nuclear program.

As nuclear missiles and weapons spread, the US faces the task of non-proliferation.

Nuclear risks are steadily growing, while the fragile restraints that limited nuclear proliferation fall by the wayside. As we enter an era where major breakthroughs on arms control and nonproliferation are unlikely, the U.S. will face the unglamorous but still crucial task of trying to prevent a bad situation from getting worse.

Though North Korea’s nuclearization efforts have faded from the headlines, the country has continued to improve its capabilities and can now plausibly reach any location in the continental United States with a nuclear weapon. In the absence of a deal to curb its nuclear and missile programs, North Korea’s arsenal will only grow more lethal.

The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Credit Suisse might lead to the great 2023 financial crisis.

Following recent turbulence in Western financial markets, many states without vast resources at their disposal are teetering at the edge of financial collapse. As an increasing number of emerging markets face brutal choices, the impact of inflation and austerity could increase the likelihood of political crises and armed conflicts.

20 years after the US invasion of Iraq.

What do we mean when we talk about the Iraq War? In the flurry of appraisals marking the 20th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, the question seems particularly relevant. Most of the bitter debates that preceded, accompanied and outlived the war now seem settled. But in many ways, that apparent resolution is illusory.

George Bush is seen in a picture during the Iraq War. 20 years have passed since the US invasion of Iraq.

The 20th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq is sparking much introspection. Some now see it as a grave error, others still think it was the right decision and others still who never supported the war now feel vindicated. With the benefit of 20 years of hindsight, three lessons from the invasion stand out.

The US military is seen amid the Ukraine-Russia war.

The Russia-Ukraine war has provided the U.S. military with valuable lessons, and the Ukrainian army’s successes validate much of the U.S. military’s doctrine and operational art. Yet there is also cause for concern: The U.S. might be well-prepared for the kind of war Russia has fought in Ukraine, but it is poorly provisioned for it.

US-Saudi relations are in a rough patch as China brokers a deal between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

The news that Saudi Arabia and Iran reestablished diplomatic relations in a deal mediated by China startled observers around the world. Beyond the question of whether it will hold, the agreement raises another important question: Does it signify a shift by Saudi Arabia away from its alignment with the U.S. to one with China?

Income and Class still play a major role in US voter demographics.

According to some pundits, class identity in the United States matters only insofar as it is a proxy for anti-immigrant attitudes and resentment toward racial minorities. But we shouldn’t be so quick to accept the idea that class identification is unimportant to Americans and therefore politically irrelevant.

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Rather than signaling a definitive resolution of their broader conflict, Saudi Arabia and Iran’s agreement to reestablish diplomatic ties can be read as Riyadh’s response to what it sees as lukewarm support by the U.S. on countering Tehran. It is also a pragmatic move by China to safeguard its interests in the Middle East.

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Many observers believed that the United States’ efforts to reorient its strategic focus to the Indo-Pacific region amid China’s resurgence had hit a snag when Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022. But for now, Washington may actually be accelerating its long-sought rebalance, recalibrating the center of gravity of U.S. foreign policy.

Hundreds of thousands of Israelis have joined large-scale, unprecedented protests against the government’s attempts to pass legislation that would undermine judicial independence and weaken vital checks and balances. The historic nature of the ongoing protests, and what they portend for the future of the Jewish state, is inescapable.

Washington’s seemingly unconditional support for Israel stretches back across presidential administrations, and one could be forgiven for thinking that the bond between the U.S. and Israel is “unbreakable.” But it does have limits. What would it take, then, for Israel to bring the era of unquestioned U.S. support to an end?

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Ever since the unveiling of OpenAI’s ChatGPT program, the field of AI has taken center stage in the competition over cutting-edge technology. And its impact on geopolitical contests, particularly in the political and military spheres, has the potential to be just as significant as its impact on business pursuits.

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Since taking office last year, South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol has worked to improve ties with both the U.S. and China, in part by trying to focus their energies on managing North Korea. But pressure is now mounting on Seoul to clarify where it stands in terms of its readiness to help defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese attack.

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