The Intelligence

The Intelligence

theintelligence.economist.com
Get a daily burst of global illumination from The Economist’s worldwide network of correspondents as they dig past the headlines to get to the stories beneath—and to stories that aren’t making headlines, but should be.


The American Dreamer: DACA in the Supreme Court
Nov 12 • 22 min
The Trump administration has long wanted to scrap the “Dreamers” scheme, which allowed illegal immigrants who came as youths to stay in America. The question is whether the programme’s founding was legal. An emissions debate has infuriated Dutch farmers,…
Unpresidented: Bolivia’s leader resigns
Nov 11 • 21 min
After weeks of protests following a disputed election, Evo Morales has stood down. Who is in charge, and how can the country escape its gridlock? On a visit to a military hospital our correspondent wonders why Americans seem so disengaged from their…
Persistence of division: after the Berlin Wall
Nov 8 • 23 min
This weekend marks three decades since the wall fell, yet stark divides remain between East and West. We revisit that moment of hope that remains unfulfilled. Ethiopia’s Somali state was until recently the country’s most repressive; a visit to one of its…
Allez, Europe! Macron’s diplomatic push
Nov 7 • 23 min
This week our correspondent joined Emmanuel Macron on his visit to China. The French president is stretching his diplomatic wings, and has some striking views about Europe’s place in the world. The state of Texas has been reliably Republican for decades,…
Demonstrative: a global wave of protest
Nov 6 • 22 min
Today’s public-sector demonstrations in Zimbabwe are just the latest in a wave of protests around the world. We look into why there are so many, and what might be driving them. It’s not all sound and fury, though; in Lebanon, an Instagram-driven push is…
Stone unturned? Trump’s adviser on trial
Nov 5 • 24 min
Today Roger Stone, a colourful associate of President Donald Trump for 40 years, goes on trial facing seven charges; he denies them. Could his testimony worry the Trump camp? In the international race to mass-market driverless cars, China’s 5G network may…
Facebooklets: breaking up Big Tech
Nov 4 • 21 min
Few politicians are as ambitious about dismantling the tech behemoths as Elizabeth Warren, one of America’s Democratic presidential contenders. What she is proposing, though, would be neither easy nor quick. We dive into the myriad threats faced by…
Impeach-y keen: Trump investigation goes public
Nov 1 • 23 min
America’s House of Representatives took its first vote on how to proceed with impeachment proceedings against the president. Republicans will now struggle to defend him. Uighurs, China’s Muslim minority, are not just at risk of internment and…
Iraq in a hard place: deadly protests continue
Oct 31 • 20 min
Demonstrations have been growing for a month and show no signs of abating. But would the reforms that the protesters are demanding actually work? We examine a pioneering bit of Lithuanian software that excels at fake-news detection. And why Germans are…
May as well: Boris Johnson’s electoral bet
Oct 30 • 22 min
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has at last secured a general election. Just as with his predecessor Theresa May, that may not result in easier Brexit arithmetic. We speak to Amy Klobuchar, a Democratic-nomination contender; she is behind in polls, but might…
Not fare enough: Chile’s protests
Oct 29 • 20 min
The ongoing unrest is no longer about a rise in metro fares; Chileans have risen up to demand that the prosperity of their country be distributed more evenly. The “Visegrad Four” economies of central Europe have been a post-communism success story—but as…
State of disarray: the killing of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
Oct 28 • 20 min
The man who brought Islamic State to the world stage with visions of a brutal “caliphate” has been killed. But the jihadist movement, while weakened, lives on. Argentines voted their reformist president out and protectionist, big-state Peronists back in.…
Poll dance: Boris Johnson’s election ploy
Oct 25 • 22 min
Britain’s prime minister is making a risky move by calling for a general election in December. Will it succeed any more than it did for his predecessor? In Japan, both the government and the people take a dim view of soft-drug use; we ask why. And…
Calls to action: Lebanon’s continued protests
Oct 24 • 20 min
What began as protests against a tax on WhatsApp calls has blossomed into surprisingly united and peaceful demands for wholesale government overhaul. Today’s disinterment and reburial of Francisco Franco, Spain’s dictator for four decades, speaks volumes…
Putin, he’s back into it: Russia’s growing influence
Oct 23 • 22 min
Vladimir Putin’s diplomacy regarding northern Syria is just one example of the Russian president’s widening influence. British Airways was once known as the world’s favourite airline, we ask why its popularity has fallen far faster than its profits. And…
The course of Trudeau love: Canada’s election
Oct 22 • 21 min
Justin Trudeau will remain prime minister, but will lead a minority government. He will probably be able to continue with his progressive push, but his halo is a bit tarnished. It’s ten years this month since Greece’s financial implosion; we look back on…
Going through the motion: more Brexit contortions
Oct 21 • 23 min
It might have been a clarifying vote on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Brexit motion; instead, more legislation and frustration. We dig through the parliamentary procedure to try to map out what happens next. Sports fans’ easy access to the world’s games…
Irish ayes? A new Brexit deal
Oct 18 • 22 min
Britain’s prime minister Boris Johnson has a newly struck European Union divorce deal in hand. He has defied the expectations of many, but he still faces a tricky vote in Britain’s parliament. Turkey’s pummelling of the Syrian border area will pause for…
Antsy about ANC: reform in South Africa
Oct 17 • 23 min
Our journalists interview Cyril Ramaphosa, South Africa’s president, about his efforts to clean up his country and his African National Congress party. He’s the right man for the job, but the clock is ticking. The markets are rife with funds run by…
Back to Square one? Tiananmen veterans in Hong Kong
Oct 16 • 24 min
Amid the growing disquiet in Hong Kong are a few survivors of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. These once-moderate voices are changing their minds about whether the protesters should keep provoking the Chinese government. Even as a currency crisis…
Then there were 12: the Democrats’ fourth debate
Oct 15 • 23 min
Twelve candidates take to the stage again tonight, with two clear front-runners. We ask how the winnowing field reflects the mood of the party. We also examine an unlikely candidate in a lesser-watched race: that for the Republican nomination. And, why…
The enemy of their enemy: the Kurds ally with Syria
Oct 14 • 20 min
Turkey’s violent strikes on north-eastern Syria came as swiftly as America’s withdrawal. The overwhelmed Kurds, once America’s staunch allies against Islamic State, now want protection from Syria’s Russian-backed forces. “Microfinance” experiments are…
PiS prize: Poland’s crucial election
Oct 11 • 21 min
It is at once a story of post-communist success and of populist threats to the rule of law by the governing Law and Justice (PiS) party. What direction will Poles choose for their country? Gay rights are few and far between in China, but couples have…
Uncomfortable president: Trump’s stonewalling
Oct 10 • 19 min
The White House is stonewalling the impeachment inquiry. Could that hinder the Democrats’ ability to build a strong public case? We look at this year’s crop of Nobel prizes in the sciences and ask why, once again, all the winners are men. And, Japan’s…
Sorry state: Kashmir on lockdown
Oct 9 • 20 min
Two months after India’s Hindu-nationalist government stripped the state of Jammu and Kashmir of its autonomy, 7m people are still in limbo. How will it end? Could America’s angrily partisan politics be explained by a rise in loneliness? We visit the…
Just a Kurd to him: Trump’s Syria withdrawal
Oct 8 • 20 min
The president’s sudden talk of departure from a contested strip of the Turkey-Syria border betrays the Kurds who helped beat back Islamic State—and risks throwing the region into chaos. A look at the cashew industry in Mozambique reveals the tricky…
Trade disunion: America’s tariff wars
Oct 7 • 22 min
Chinese and American trade negotiators will again be trying to avoid more eye-watering tariffs this week; meanwhile a years-long dispute with the European Union has sparked yet more levies. Where does it all end? We describe the recent “quantum supremacy”…
Duty call: how Ukraine sees the Trump scandal
Oct 4 • 22 min
A phone call between the presidents has sparked an impeachment inquiry in America. But how do the people of Ukraine view the kerfuffle? Massive student protests put Indonesia’s president in a bind, balancing his programme of reforms and growth against…
Immunisation shot? The case against Binyamin Netanyahu
Oct 3 • 20 min
Political deadlock in Israel is now inextricably intertwined with a case against the prime minister. An eventual coalition could provide him with immunity, or could seal his political fate. The signature social reform of Emmanuel Macron, France’s…
Reform over function: Peru’s political crisis
Oct 2 • 22 min
A long-running dispute between the president and the opposition-controlled Congress has spun out of control—and it’s not clear who will end up leading the country. A visit to a protest camp in coal-country Kentucky is a revealing look into several of…
Party like it’s 1949: China’s National Day
Oct 1 • 20 min
As at the founding of the People’s Republic, the 70th anniversary featured a tightly controlled parade bristling with the country’s latest military kit. That marks a sharp contrast to the growing chaos in Hong Kong, where a protest spirit has sparked new…
Out-of-office messaging: Britain’s Tory conference
Sep 30 • 22 min
Lawmakers are back in Parliament while the ruling party is elsewhere, laying out its legislative mission. The Tories are divided, more scandals are arising and the only consistent message is “Get Brexit done”. We meet a Georgian film-maker whose love…
Spoiled ballot: Afghanistan’s election
Sep 27 • 22 min
The country is set for another violent and disputed election. But the fact that Afghans will head to the polls anyway is an encouraging story. Insurance could mitigate the risks that climate change presents to lives and livelihoods—if it weren’t…
Call to account: Trump-Ukraine intrigues
Sep 26 • 20 min
President Donald Trump’s call to his Ukrainian counterpart is under ever-greater scrutiny. An unexpected impeachment inquiry has started; how will it end? For the world’s small-island states, climate change is literally an existential concern. So they’ve…
And the law won: Boris Johnson’s latest defeat
Sep 25 • 21 min
Once again, Britain’s prime minister has been thwarted, this time for trying to stymie Parliament as the European departure looms. How will Boris proceed, and how will Brexit progress? We take a look at economists’ rise to policy prominence, and what they…
Aid for abetting? Trump’s Ukraine call
Sep 24 • 19 min
President Donald Trump’s critics say a telephone call with his Ukrainian counterpart would reveal his most egregious offence yet. But it’s hard to say what would tip lawmakers into pursuing impeachment. Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel agency has…
Madurable: impasse in Venezuela
Sep 23 • 21 min
International sanctions have crimped the regime, and the country’s people. Yet President Nicolás Maduro is still in charge. The only way out is for him to share power, not relinquish it. The “internet of things” will eventually comprise perhaps a trillion…
To all, concern: a climate-change special
Sep 20 • 23 min
As the Global Climate Strike gets under way, we look at all matters climatic. History shows that fervent debate—and self-interested misinformation—go back to the mid-20th century. Uncertainties in scientists’ climate models are swamped by uncertainties…
I can do that, Dave: AI and warfare
Sep 19 • 21 min
Artificial intelligence is making its way into every aspect of life, including military conflict. We look at the thorny legal and ethical issues that the newest arms race raises. Three executives from Fukushima’s melted-down nuclear-power plant were…
Ursa minor: Russia-China relations
Sep 18 • 21 min
In the 20th century Russia was the more powerful partner. Take a look at the flows of money and influence today, though, and it’s clear the situation has reversed. Part-time work first took hold because it offered flexibility to women just entering the…
Always be my Bibi? Israel back at the polls
Sep 17 • 21 min
The country has never had two elections in a year, and the second looks to be as close-run as the first. Could that at last spell the end of the Binyamin Netanyahu era? A mysterious illness linked to e-cigarettes has now killed seven Americans—but vaping…
Pipe down: attacks on Saudi oil
Sep 16 • 22 min
Strikes on the world’s largest refinery are bad news for the state oil firm ahead of a record-breaking stock listing—and worse news for the proxy war between Iran and America. Another coming listing is that of WeWork; we consider whether the office-rental…
To Viktor, more spoils: Hungary’s autocracy
Sep 13 • 21 min
He was once a liberal reformer, but now no institution is safe from Viktor Orban’s iron grip. His transformation into an autocrat is a troubling lesson about the decline of liberal democracies. Afghanistan’s drug trade has for decades mostly meant opium…
Trust issues: Huawei’s radical plan
Sep 12 • 23 min
The tech giant finds itself enmeshed in a broad battle between China and America. But Huawei’s boss has an idea that might extricate it: selling off its 5G crown jewels. The battle isn’t only in technology; the documentary “American Factory” examines what…
Scapegoating: xenophobia in South Africa
Sep 11 • 19 min
Migrants have become a convenient scapegoat for South Africans frustrated by a slumping economy and rampant unemployment—and for the politicians who might otherwise take the blame. We take a look at the ever-sharper divisions in America’s abortion debate.…
Things fall apart: Britain’s fading centre-right
Sep 10 • 20 min
Parliament is suspended for weeks. The Conservative party has been hollowed out. The prime minister’s hopes for an election have been dashed, twice. What does all this portend for the Tory party? And a special election in a solidly Republican district in…
Tali-banned: Trump calls off Afghan peace talks
Sep 9 • 21 min
President Trump has abruptly cancelled talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan, raising fears of renewed internal strife. Wales dabbles in nationalism, and it could follow the Scottish push for separatism. Finally, could a deal finally be on the horizon in…
Disunited Russia party? Moscow’s elections
Sep 6 • 22 min
This weekend’s vote will fill some fairly inconsequential city positions. But how it plays out will indicate the strength of a rapidly broadening, national movement against the ruling United Russia party. China has long been repressing the Muslim-minority…
Age-old problem: reforming France
Sep 5 • 22 min
President Emmanuel Macron embarks on a serious policy challenge today over pensions. Will his efforts at reform re-ignite the protests that have dogged his presidency? And, a look at the legacies of two opposing figures of environmentalism: David Koch, a…
This is revolting: Britain’s parliament rebels
Sep 4 • 20 min
Boris Johnson has lost his parliamentary majority. Conservative party rebels will now help push for a bill precluding a no-deal Brexit, making an early election look even more likely. Violence in Afghanistan continues, even as America’s negotiations with…
No safety in numbers: America’s immigration raids
Sep 3 • 22 min
Workplace raids catch many undocumented migrants in one place. But they do nothing to tackle the criminal element that the Trump administration has so vilified. Many of the 2,000 Turkish citizens that fought alongside jihadists in Syria now want to…
Until blue in the face: Hong Kong’s protests
Sep 2 • 21 min
The territory’s authorities have used live rounds, pepper spray and water cannon with blue dye to mark participants in ever-growing protests. What else might they resort to? The Baltic states, worried about Russian expansionism, are countering the…
Out to launch: American nuclear policy
Aug 30 • 22 min
There is a push in America to subscribe to a “no first use” policy on nukes, in a bid to reduce risks and anxiety. But could that actually make things less stable? We tour through South Asia, where the annual monsoon is increasingly disrupted by climate…
Suspend, disbelief: Parliament and Brexit
Aug 29 • 21 min
Boris Johnson, Britain’s prime minister, sparked widespread outrage by suspending Parliament in the run-up to Brexit. What recourse do lawmakers still have? Taiwan’s deal to buy American fighter jets reveals wide political support for tooling up against…
Ex-Seoul-mate: Japan-South Korea spat escalates
Aug 28 • 18 min
Century-old discord is never far from the surface for the two countries, but the latest flare-up risks disrupting stability in the region. We estimate how much the grounded Boeing 737 MAX plane is costing airlines, suppliers and the planemaker itself:…
Emmanuel transmission: outcomes of the G7
Aug 27 • 22 min
The weekend summit hosted by France’s President Emmanuel Macron resulted in few concrete actions; mostly the diplomatic dance was intended to keep President Donald Trump on side. Such meetings may not always go smoothly, but they’re still worth having. We…
A friend of mines: Asia’s coal habit
Aug 26 • 22 min
The region accounts for three-quarters of the world’s coal consumption—even as giants such as China and India consider its environmental effects and opportunities in renewables. For a while, international aid and attention were showered on Liberia; now…
Fight or flight: Cathay Pacific
Aug 23 • 20 min
China’s central government has made an example of the huge, Hong Kong-based carrier. Will the ploy work to quell protests in the territory, or just further rattle the nerves of its international firms? We examine the spectacular rise of Pentecostalism in…
Pull out all the backstops: Boris Johnson in Europe
Aug 22 • 19 min
Britain’s prime minister is on the continent ahead of this weekend’s G7 meeting. We ask whether he’ll be able to ditch the Irish “backstop” that has become Brexit’s stickiest sticking point. We take a look at FedEx, its old-school disrupter founder and…
League of its own? Italian politics
Aug 21 • 20 min
Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini has pulled the rug from under the country’s government, betting that his charismatic right-wingery might win him more-complete rule. Will it work? We take a look at Latin America’s state energy giants—and find the…
Power rationing: Sudan in transition
Aug 20 • 22 min
After months of unceasing protests, military leaders have struck a deal to share power with civilians, while Omar al-Bashir, the country’s deposed dictator, is in court. But can Sudan break out of its cycle of violence? We examine the curious notion that…
Scarcely surviving: Zimbabwe
Aug 19 • 21 min
Electricity, food, water: everything is in short supply in the country, including faith in the government’s ability to recover from Robert Mugabe’s kleptocracy. China produced a record 8.3m university graduates this year; we take a look at the changing…
Yield signs: the global economy
Aug 16 • 22 min
Investors are piling into safe assets as markets whipsaw: what’s driving the global economy these days is anxiety. Is all the worry justified? Nestled among the conflicts and suffering in the Democratic Republic of Congo is a vast national park that is…
Poll reposition: Macri fights back
Aug 15 • 20 min
President Mauricio Macri’s thumping presidential-primary loss in Argentina left the markets fearing a left-wing resurgence. To win over voters, he’s announced a relaxation of some austerity measures. Will it be enough? In the Arctic, wildfires are…
Let’s not make a deal: Brexit
Aug 14 • 21 min
Talk grows ever-louder of Britain exiting the European Union without a divorce agreement. Most parliamentarians would rather avoid that—but can they do anything to stop it? We join a Ukrainian military exercise as the country seeks to beef up defences…
Sex cells: the modern fertility business
Aug 13 • 21 min
Companies are rushing to fill new niches for would-be parents: in vitro fertilisation extras, swish egg-harvesting “studios” and apps to track reproductive health. But some companies promise more than science can deliver. The worrying flare-up of piracy…
Raid in Aden: Yemen’s fragmented conflict
Aug 12 • 22 min
Over the weekend, armed rebels overran Aden, the seat of Yemen’s internationally recognised government. They had defected from a loose, Saudi-backed coalition that looks increasingly shaky. The gaming business is huge, but isn’t yet part of the streaming…
Withdrawal symptoms: America-Taliban talks
Aug 9 • 19 min
America’s envoy claimed “excellent progress” in negotiations ahead of the country’s planned exit from Afghanistan. But stickier talks await, between the Islamist militia and the Afghan government. A promising new vaccine may at last tackle typhoid fever,…
Clear-cut risks: the Amazon degrades
Aug 8 • 21 min
Deforestation is on the rise and Brazil’s government is all but encouraging it. Beyond a certain threshold, the world’s largest rainforest will dry out into a savanna—with dire consequences. We ask why Malaysia’s reformist coalition isn’t doing much…
State of alarm: India moves on Kashmir
Aug 7 • 22 min
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has gutted the autonomy of the restive and disputed Jammu & Kashmir. India’s only majority-Muslim state is locked down and fearful of a vast demographic reshuffle. We meet the deep-sea divers of the oil industry,…
PLA a part? Hong Kong’s growing unrest
Aug 6 • 20 min
China’s central government held another press conference to address increasingly chaotic unrest in Hong Kong. A close listen reveals language that may be presaging a military intervention. There’s much to be said for employee share ownership—but a push…
Sticking to their guns: violence in America
Aug 5 • 23 min
Two mass shootings over the weekend add to the unrelenting stream of gun violence in America. We look at the political and social forces that ensure it will continue. The collapse of Venezuela’s infrastructure has left its people desperate for medical…
A farewell to arms control: the INF treaty dies
Aug 2 • 21 min
As America abandons the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty we examine the future of arms control. New weapons abound and new countries are using them, but new treaties will be hard to come by. With Baltimore in the news as President Donald Trump’s…
Disbelief, dysfunction, disaster: Congo’s Ebola outbreak
Aug 1 • 20 min
As aid workers battle the second-worst outbreak in history, they face violence and disbelief. A history of conflict, suspicion of the rich world and wild conspiracy theories make fighting a difficult battle far harder. Architects are tackling the dark,…
Apply liberally: Trudeau’s re-election bid
Jul 31 • 20 min
Canada’s prime minister may not have an easy campaign ahead; we sit down with Justin Trudeau to discuss his tenure so far. The country’s role as a liberal bastion seems safe, for now. Bayer is now reckoning with the problems presented by its latest…
Primary culler: Democrats’ second debates
Jul 30 • 23 min
The fields of American presidential candidates just keep getting bigger, and party rules incentivise extreme views and dark-horse entrants. That might not be what’s best for either party. The fast-shipping arms race sparked by Amazon is radically…
One country, one system: Hong Kong’s protests
Jul 29 • 21 min
Authorities in Beijing held a rare press conference addressing unrest in Hong Kong. That gives lie to the region’s “one country, two systems” governance; fears of a vicious crackdown are growing. Beneath what might seem to be advancements of women’s…
A plight in Tunisia: the president passes
Jul 26 • 21 min
Beji Caid Essebsi promised to fix the economy, re-establish security and consolidate Tunisia’s democracy—but all of that remains unresolved as the country begins its search for a new leader. Pet ownership is surging around the world, as are ways to pamper…
Nothing new to report: Robert Mueller testifies
Jul 25 • 22 min
As promised, the special counsel revealed no more than appeared in his report into Russian election-meddling and obstruction of justice. The story hasn’t moved on, but Democrats would be wise to. Economists are returning to an old idea: that cultural…
Ricky situation: Puerto Rico’s protests
Jul 24 • 19 min
Rolling protests have rocked the island after leaked texts revealed the governor’s insults. But Puerto Rico’s problems are far greater than almost 900 pages of tasteless jokes. We consider the merits of challenging Latin America’s amnesties; justice might…
You, May, be excused: Boris Johnson ascends
Jul 23 • 19 min
Britain has a new prime minister—who will inherit all the same problems his predecessor had. Good luck guiding a divided nation through Brexit with a paper-thin majority in parliament. Europe’s steel industry is getting hammered by tariffs and gluts, but…
Get one thing strait: Iran’s tanker stand-off
Jul 22 • 22 min
The seizure of a British-flagged tanker in the Gulf may seem counter to Iran’s international objectives. But at home, hardliners are in the ascendancy—for them, it’s a public-relations coup. The rise of populism, particularly in Europe, suggests voters…
Servant’s entrance: Ukraine’s elections
Jul 19 • 22 min
Volodymyr Zelensky’s Servant of the People party looks set to make big gains in Ukraine’s parliament this weekend. It must, if it wants to weaken oligarchs’ hold over the country. If space exploration and exploitation is to really take off, there’s one…
Unmoving movement: Venezuela’s bloody stalemate
Jul 18 • 20 min
The opposition’s momentum has faded; many protesters are too tired to go on. Nicolás Maduro, the illegitimate president, is showing his grip on power with shows of force. Global shipping is in a slump—but a visit to the Port of Rotterdam reveals that the…
In like a Leyen: the European Commission’s new president
Jul 17 • 21 min
Ursula von der Leyen has a tough task ahead, pressing a broad agenda in a fragmented European Parliament. We take a look at the vast international collaboration that is weather prediction, where it’s heading and how climate change could make it harder.…
At stake, chips: Japan-South Korea trade spat
Jul 16 • 22 min
A dispute about industrial chemicals reveals tensions that have remained unresolved since the second world war—and threatens the global electronics market. In the Indian state of Assam, a trumped-up rule on citizenship singles out Muslims for detention…
Tip of the ICE work: the immigration raids that weren’t
Jul 15 • 23 min
There was little evidence this weekend of the widespread immigration raids long promised by President Donald Trump. But his campaign of sowing fear seems to be working. Many of China’s infrastructure projects in Africa have been costly flops, and China is…
Tsai hopes: Taiwan’s president on tour
Jul 12 • 22 min
The delicate diplomatic dance that America is performing during Tsai Ing-Wen’s visit hints at the island’s strategic importance. Two of the deadly blazes of Australia’s “Black Saturday” were deliberately set; we ask what makes someone start fires. And,…
Unspeakable truths: Britain’s US ambassador
Jul 11 • 22 min
The “special relationship” has been strained this week, following the leak of frank diplomatic cables. The conditions of Sir Kim Darroch’s departure are a window into both Britain’s current politics and its future. International development projects don’t…
From Russia with launch codes: Turkey’s new hardware
Jul 10 • 22 min
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan faces increasing pressures at home and abroad, and he’s adding to them—most of all by acquiring Russian missile defences that make Turkey’s NATO allies nervous. As Colombia emerges from a half-century of conflict with FARC…
Late to the parting: Deutsche Bank shrinks
Jul 9 • 22 min
For years, management at Germany’s largest bank knew the firm was in serious trouble. Why didn’t they do more? The massive cuts announced this week may be too little, too late. We consider Texas and California as political and social laboratories: which…
In the after-Ba’ath: Syria’s rising Kurds
Jul 8 • 22 min
For years, Syria’s Kurdish people were largely invisible: their language, flag and festivals were all suppressed. Now, in much of the country’s north and east, they rule over the Arabs who once ruled over them. A brutal murder in a sleepy German village…
New Democracy in an old one: Greece’s election
Jul 5 • 22 min
Kyriakos Mitsotakis looks likely to lead his New Democracy party to victory in this weekend’s snap election. But can he deliver on all the promises of his big-tent campaign? We examine the controversy and the politics surrounding the detention of migrants…
Putin on a show: Russia’s resurgence
Jul 4 • 23 min
Russia’s president is glad-handing in Italy, where his anti-liberal roadshow resonates. But Mr Putin’s is a twisted vision of liberalism, and at home many of his compatriots see through the ruse. We examine the “Swedish model” of prostitution laws, and…
Growth anatomy: America’s expansive decade
Jul 3 • 22 min
What’s behind the record-breaking economic boom and how much longer can it last? Does America’s central bank have the tools it needs to handle the inevitable downturn? The racial gap in Americans’ life expectancy is as small as it’s ever been; we examine…
Break a LegCo: Hong Kong’s protests boil over
Jul 2 • 21 min
Protesters are in a defiant mood—a hard core of them has smashed up Hong Kong’s Legislative Council. But demonstrations aren’t going to make the territory any more free. The state-owned investment vehicles known as sovereign-wealth funds are usually…
Armoured Khartoum: Sudan’s bloody transition
Jul 1 • 22 min
Protesters returned to the streets of Khartoum this weekend, again with deadly consequences. We look back to last month’s violent crackdown, and consider Sudan’s troubled push for democracy. China’s swine-flu outbreaks threaten hundreds of millions of…
Census and sensibility: landmark SCOTUS rulings
Jun 28 • 23 min
America’s highest court has handed down decisions that will shape voter representation for years to come. The rulings make clear the court’s reluctance to become politicised. As China’s and America’s leaders meet on the sidelines of the G20 gathering, we…
Fight if you Haftar: the struggle for Libya
Jun 27 • 22 min
Life in Libya’s capital seems calm, even as a warlord backed by ragtag forces bids to take the city. Meanwhile the putative government can muster little political power—or electric power. We examine a miracle in Moldova: after years as a swamp of…
Rights on Q: same-sex marriage in Japan
Jun 26 • 21 min
A bill to recognise same-sex marriage has failed in Japan’s parliament, exposing a widening divide between the views of its politicians and the values of its people. For some officials, Burundi’s election tax is an excuse for extortion; for some citizens,…
Money in the West Bank: Kushner’s peace plan
Jun 25 • 21 min
Tensions between Iran and America are distracting from Jared Kushner’s long-awaited Israeli-Palestinian peace plan. It’s got plenty of dollar signs, but no sign yet of a political solution. We ask why Argentina’s former president is now running for…
Lover or Leaver? How Brexit divided Britons
Jun 24 • 22 min
Exactly three years after the referendum result, it’s clear: Brexit has driven Britain a bit batty. We look into the grand societal divides that the vote exposed. In Istanbul, a repeat mayoral election reaches the same result: the ruling party lost.…
Blonde ambition: Boris’s bid for power
Jun 21 • 23 min
Charming buffoon or cunning chameleon? Welcoming liberal or snarling Brexiteer? We ask why, despite having no guiding philosophy, Boris Johnson is so likely to become Britain’s prime minister. Our obituaries editor remembers the socialite Claus von Bülow,…
Hawks, stocks and peril: Iran-America brinkmanship
Jun 20 • 19 min
Iran’s downing of an American drone today is just the latest source of tension between the countries. Where does it end? As facial-recognition technology improves, rising privacy concerns are hampering its adoption. And in Britain, advertisements that…
Moving stories: the UN’s refugee report
Jun 19 • 20 min
The worldwide count of people forced from their homelands has increased sharply, again. What’s driving these movements, and what are governments doing about incoming refugees? The Democratic Republic of Congo is suffering the world’s second-largest…
Florida Man: Trump’s re-election campaign
Jun 18 • 20 min
America’s president heads back to the Sunshine State today to announce his candidacy. What to expect this time around? Muhammad Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically elected president, has died in court. We look back on his troubled leadership and…
Lam to the slaughter: Hong Kong’s shocking U-turn
Jun 17 • 23 min
Calls for the resignation of Carrie Lam, the territory’s leader, are intensifying. Hong Kongers may have put a recent freedom-crimping bill on ice, but more challenges to their independence await. We speak to the mother of a child genius who reveals the…
What’s yours has mines: the Gulf of Oman attack
Jun 14 • 21 min
America has blamed Iran for yesterday’s tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman. If that’s true, Iran is playing a dangerous game that involves the whole of the region. The violent militias that control much of Rio de Janeiro might be easy to beat if they…
Vlad the un-jailer: the Ivan Golunov case
Jun 13 • 21 min
An investigative journalist’s release may look like a press-freedom win in Russia—but it represents much more than that. Democratic presidential hopefuls have no shortage of transformative ideas, yet Senate arithmetic ensures there’s little hope of…
Once more, with felines: half the world gets online
Jun 12 • 21 min
Half of humanity is now online. What will the second half do when it logs on? The same as the first: friendly chat, personal expression and a lot of cat videos. Despite appearances, racism in America is actually going down; the problem is that America’s…
Independence say: Hong Kong’s ongoing protests
Jun 11 • 22 min
A proposed change to the judicial system is just the latest sign that mainland China is exerting pressure on Hong Kong’s autonomy. Authorities seem ready to quell further demonstrations. Although solitary confinement is widely condemned, it’s still common…
No way to tweet a friend: Trump’s Mexico tariffs
Jun 10 • 21 min
In the end, President Donald Trump’s tariff threat did what he had hoped: Mexico has pledged to tighten immigration flows. But such weaponisation of tariffs bodes ill for the future. China’s “green Great Wall” of trees—a bid to halt desertification—may be…
Tory story: Britain’s next prime minister
Jun 7 • 21 min
Today Theresa May stepped down as leader of the Conservative Party, and would-be replacements are already lining up. There’s little hope that any would be able to arrange an elegant exit from Europe. Also, we take a look at the astonishing range of…
Basta! The EU challenges Italy’s finances
Jun 6 • 20 min
European officials have threatened a substantial fine if Italy doesn’t shrink its debt and budget deficit. Whether or not it follows through, markets are already punishing the country. Tens of thousands of refugees have snuck into Canada from America, but…
Same as the old boss? Crackdown in Sudan
Jun 5 • 20 min
Nearly two months after staging a coup, military leaders have brutally cracked down on protesters in Sudan. Talks with the opposition have fallen apart—as have hopes for a resurgent Sudanese democracy. We examine the rise in gun violence in Latin America…
Thirty years of forgetting: Tiananmen
Jun 4 • 22 min
On the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square tragedy, our correspondents reflect on a dark and confusing day—and the Chinese government’s efforts to suppress the memory of it. Could such widespread dissent flare up in today’s China? Also, why laws…
Get pomped up: Trump’s British visit
Jun 3 • 22 min
President Donald Trump kicks off his state visit to Britain with some opening shots at London’s mayor Sadiq Khan. But larger issues will take center stage. Amid Brexit, a leadership contest and simmering security tensions, we discuss the strains to the…
Protectionist racket: trade-war rhetoric
May 31 • 22 min
As President Donald Trump threatens new tariffs on Mexican goods, retaliatory ones between China and America are starting to bite. That puts China’s party leaders—and their hardening nationalist message—in a tricky spot. We examine how the global…
Likudn’t: Israel’s political crisis
May 30 • 20 min
For the first time since Israel’s founding, efforts to form a government have failed. What will the resulting snap election mean for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu? Alleged meddling in the Czech judiciary has sparked protests; it seems that challenges…
Baba Go Slow: Nigeria’s President gets another term
May 29 • 18 min
Muhammadu Buhari earned the nickname “Baba Go Slow” for a lackadaisical approach to reform as Nigeria’s president. He mismanaged the economy, failed to tackle corruption and has been unable to restrain the terrorist group Boko Haram. Will he be more…
Continental breakfast: European elections
May 28 • 20 min
Europe’s voters have shown they are not happy with traditional parties. But even as the Brexit Party surged in Britain, populists across the continent found elections to the European Parliament tougher than expected, while the Green Party made a strong…
This May hurt: British politics
May 24 • 20 min
Britain’s prime minister Theresa May has at last revealed the date she will step down. She had the unenviable task of trying to deliver Brexit, which she failed to, and her successor may not fare any better. President Donald Trump has lost crucial legal…
Repeat performance: India’s election
May 23 • 20 min
Narendra Modi’s BJP appears to have won a convincing re-election victory. What will that mean for India and the region? We look back on the life of Bob Hawke, a former Australian prime minister who convinced the world that his country deserved a place in…
Ibiza remix: Austria and the European fringe
May 22 • 21 min
As a scandal involving Austria’s hard-right Freedom party causes the government to unravel, we examine the fringe parties of Europe and their chances in this week’s European election. As tech billionaires continue to indulge their obsession with space…
In a heartbeat: abortion in America
May 21 • 21 min
The strict anti-abortion bills cropping up in multiple American states aren’t expected to become the law of the land—but proponents want them to chip away at Roe v Wade, which is. Attacks on albinos have risen ahead of Malawi’s presidential election; we…
Battle for legitimacy: Afghanistan v the Taliban
May 20 • 22 min
After 18 years and almost a trillion dollars to fight the Taliban, Afghanistan’s government still struggles for legitimacy; we ask why. A list of the world’s ultra-rich reveals a disproportionate number of self-made female billionaires from China—but the…
Private iniquity? The Abraaj case
May 17 • 21 min
Not long ago, Abraaj was one of the world’s highest-profile private-equity firms. We take a look at its spectacular downfall, and the fate of its charismatic boss, Arif Naqvi. This weekend Australian voters will elect a new parliament. How can politicians…
May, EU live in interesting times: Brexit
May 16 • 21 min
As party leaders grill Britain’s prime minister—and with a looming European election the country was due to avoid—we examine how the Brexit mess is dissolving party allegiances. Turkey was once seen as a success story in dealing with Syrians fleeing…
Don’t spend it all at once: Pakistan and the IMF
May 15 • 21 min
The International Monetary Fund has struck another deal to bail out Pakistan—its 22nd. But how did the country’s economy end up in such a mess? Never mind rising numbers of vegetarians: the world is eating more meat, and in a way, that’s a good thing.…
Supply demands: Yemen peace talks
May 14 • 23 min
UN negotiators are trying to salvage a ceasefire agreement surrounding the Yemeni port city of Hodeidah. The Arab world’s poorest country is suffering mightily, but the patchwork of actors makes a successful deal ever more difficult. In Latin America,…
Spare the Rodrigo: Philippine elections
May 13 • 21 min
Personalities, not policies, will determine votes in today’s poll in the Philippines to fill some 18,000 government jobs. Loyalists of the firebrand president Rodrigo Duterte—including his daughter—will do well. Also, why is it that amid a growing need…
Unbalance of trade: China-America talks
May 10 • 22 min
Negotiations to end the trade war have been ruffled as the Trump administration again ramped up tariffs. But even if a deal is struck, that won’t address serious systemic troubles in the countries’ relationship. Many diets rely on simply counting…
Generals’ election: Thai politics
May 9 • 21 min
The military junta that runs Thailand almost completely sewed up a momentous vote—almost. After further electoral meddling the generals will now lead a weak government, with a surging youth-led party nipping at their heels. As Russia intensifies bombings…
Nuclear diffusion: Iran
May 8 • 21 min
Exactly a year after President Donald Trump pulled America out of the Iran nuclear deal—and days after America moved warships into the Persian Gulf—Iran has announced it will break the terms of the deal. Is it more than just sabre-rattling? We examine an…
Mayor may not: Turkey’s election re-run
May 7 • 21 min
Turkey’s ruling AK party never conceded defeat in Istanbul’s mayoral election in March. Now the result has been annulled, worrying the opposition and international observers. A China-America trade deal has been thrown into doubt thanks to a presidential…
Everything in moderation: YouTube
May 6 • 23 min
Susan Wojcicki, YouTube’s chief executive, tells our correspondent that moderating the streaming giant’s content is her biggest challenge. No wonder: every minute, 500 hours-worth of it is added. Also, how West African research is being used to address…
Barr, none: the White House’s defiance
May 3 • 22 min
The no-show of America’s attorney-general in Congress is just the latest example of the White House’s broad stonewalling policy; we look at the constitutional crisis that may be brewing. Facebook’s blocking of extremists yesterday is just one front the…
Buy the bullet: global defence spending
May 2 • 20 min
Governments the world over are beefing up defence spending—chief among them America’s and China’s. But some aggressive countries’ budgets are actually shrinking. May Day protests in France took a violent turn this year, and that complicates President…
Putsch comes to shove: Venezuela
May 1 • 22 min
Juan Guaidó, the opposition figure widely viewed as the legitimate leader of Venezuela, has made a dramatic attempt to seize power from President Nicolás Maduro. But the effort appears stalled; how did he go wrong? We look more widely at coups around the…
Inflationary pressure: Argentina’s strikes
Apr 30 • 20 min
Patience runs thin amid rampant inflation and a devaluing currency; Argentines are taking to the streets for two days of strikes and protests. Taiwan’s richest man has joined the presidential race, but lots of his business is based in China. He will…
Crossing the “t”s: China-America trade talks
Apr 29 • 20 min
American negotiators will be in Beijing this week, for what appears to be the final stages of striking a trade deal. What’s left to be agreed, and what are the sticking points? Also, America’s shale boom has given it leverage in international oil…
The strain in Spain: an election looms
Apr 26 • 21 min
Ahead of this weekend’s general election, we examine Spain’s fractured political landscape. A much-needed bastion of stability in Europe looks set for a long fight to form a government. We also take a look at two lingering effects of Japan’s post-war…
Five Eyes and 5G: the Huawei debate
Apr 25 • 21 min
Leaked discussions reveal that Britain is going against the grain of its “Five Eyes” security partners by letting Huawei supply kit for coming 5G networks. What are the risks—to security and to the alliance? Now that Robert Mueller’s report is in the…
Troubling: a death in Northern Ireland
Apr 24 • 21 min
A young journalist will be buried today, after being accidentally shot by dissident republicans in Northern Ireland. The killing is a worrying reminder of bygone decades of violence that fraught Brexit negotiations may be rekindling. We take a look at…
Worrying new threat: tragedy in Sri Lanka
Apr 23 • 22 min
After co-ordinated bomb attacks that killed hundreds, Sri Lanka is reeling. But if the government was so consumed by internal struggles as to miss warnings, how can it respond to the devastation? We take a look at global efforts to contain corruption,…
Early to wed: child marriage in Africa
Apr 22 • 19 min
Marrying too young has lifelong effects: on a girl’s body as much as on her education and career. We explore what is behind a sharp decline in child marriage in parts of Ethiopia. There’s an ancient-clothing trend in China that is mostly goofy fun. But…
Planes, trains and automobiles: the travails of travel
Apr 19 • 22 min
Easter weekend is a busy travel time for the many people who celebrate it. If you’re lucky, it means some time off work. But you might be unlucky, and travel through a terrible airport (we talk about the world’s worst). Or perhaps you’ll splash out and…
[Redacted]: the Mueller report
Apr 18 • 21 min
Today the report by Robert Mueller, the special counsel who investigated Russian links to the Trump administration, will be released—mostly. What lies behind the redactions, and what investigations are still to play out? Politicians have dabbled in comedy…
Roads to success: Indonesia’s election
Apr 17 • 22 min
Joko Widodo, the incumbent president, is expected to win today’s vote, after a people-pleasing term tackling the country’s infrastructure. But there are worrying signs about how Jokowi would continue to rule. As a herd of “unicorns” stampedes toward…
And then, silence: a Paris icon burns
Apr 16 • 19 min
Emmanuel Macron, France’s president, was already battling the flames of national protest when fire broke out at the Notre Dame cathedral. Will the tragedy, and Mr Macron’s leadership, bring the country together? America’s armed forces often don’t know how…
Modi’s operandi: India’s enormous election
Apr 15 • 21 min
The world’s largest democratic exercise is under way. Prime Minister Narendra Modi looks likely to win on a divisive platform about Hindu nationalism and Pakistani aggression—even if those aren’t voters’ biggest concerns. Social-media companies are…
Bashir and present danger: Sudan’s coup
Apr 12 • 23 min
A protest movement that began in December at last brought Sudan’s military brass on board. The country’s cycle of dictatorship and democracy may be repeating itself. Bitcoin just turned ten, but it’s still far from fulfilling its promise to upend the…
Brussels’ doubts: another Brexit delay
Apr 11 • 21 min
Britain now has a new Brexit deadline: the end of October. But those negotiations magnified divisions within the European Union that Brexit is revealing—and causing. We visit one of the Chinese towns whose governments are running social experiments,…
Bibi got back: Israel’s election
Apr 10 • 19 min
Binyamin Netanyahu looks set to win a fifth term as prime minister. How will his policies affect negotiations about some of the most contested land on Earth? Meanwhile in space, Israel’s Beresheet probe is set to land on the Moon—but the recent spate of…
The new mediocre: the world economy
Apr 9 • 20 min
The International Monetary Fund releases its global-growth forecast today. Expect news of a downgrade, but not recession: low growth has become the status quo. We join international forces in Burkina Faso, where African troops are being trained to contain…
Tripoli threat: a warlord’s bid to take Libya
Apr 8 • 20 min
As rebel forces advance on Tripoli and American troops withdraw, we look at the Libyan general leading the march, and at the country’s fractured politics. There’s evidence that Facebook’s advertisement algorithms discriminate on the basis of race and…
Theresa looks left: Brexit negotiations
Apr 5 • 23 min
Having seemingly exhausted options within her own party, Prime Minister Theresa May is now trying to strike an EU divorce deal with Jeremy Corbyn, the head of the opposition. We profile the hard-left Labour leader. This weekend marks 25 years since one of…
Resigned to it: Algeria’s president
Apr 4 • 20 min
After two decades as president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika has resigned. But the cabal that’s been running the country doesn’t want to give up power and the opposition is disorganised. Will anything change? Medical professionals staged protests in Canada this…
Fund while it lasted: the 1MDB scandal
Apr 3 • 20 min
Today Malaysia’s former prime minister faces his first of several trials, for alleged involvement in the disappearance of billions of dollars from 1MDB, a state-run fund. Businesses also endure their share of scandals, too—the latest one surrounding the…
Vote with pride: LGBT politicians
Apr 2 • 20 min
Chicago votes for a new mayor today. Either way it will become the largest American city run by an African-American woman, but it may also get another openly gay mayor. We examine America’s proliferation of LGBT candidates. Mark Zuckerberg’s open letter…
AK, not quite OK: Turkey’s elections
Apr 1 • 20 min
Turkey’s ruling AK party made historic losses in local elections. Voters, it seems, are fed up with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s economic mismanagement—but his party remains firmly in control. We visit Mozambique to take stock of the damage wrought by…
Comic’s relief? Ukraine’s presidential race
Mar 29 • 22 min
A television show’s everyman character winds up as president: and now the actor who plays him leads the polls ahead of Ukraine’s election. Many museums house artefacts that were looted from their homelands; we examine why the calls for returning such…
Another dance ‘round the May poll: Brexit
Mar 28 • 21 min
Britain’s prime minister has promised to step down if Parliament passes her deal with the European Union. That has sparked a leadership contest that seems likely only to complicate the mess. As an American county declares a state of emergency over its…
Seeing the Lighthizer: China trade talks
Mar 27 • 19 min
Another week, another round of negotiations between China and America. But as domestic and economic pressures on both sides have lifted, the path to resolution seems ever more unclear. Apple’s entry into the film-and-television business is just the latest…
Loan behold: a global-economy danger
Mar 26 • 20 min
The world has only just recovered from the last global financial shock. But a new trend has economists worried: the rising debt on companies’ balance-sheets. Methamphetamine use is skyrocketing in East Asia; we look into the causes and the effects. And,…
Collusion elusion: the Mueller report
Mar 25 • 21 min
Robert Mueller, the special counsel, has at last delivered his report on President Donald Trump’s campaign. Will it have disappointed or empowered the Democrats in Congress who are still bent on investigating the president? And, four years ago the…
The never-ending saga: Brexit delayed
Mar 22 • 22 min
European leaders nixed Theresa May’s request to postpone Brexit for three months, but have given her a short-term reprieve - delaying it by a few weeks and possibly longer. Thailand is about to hold its first election since the military seized power five…
Not now, Theresa: Postponing Britain’s EU goodbye
Mar 21 • 19 min
With just eight days to go before Brexit, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May wants to extend the leaving date. As an EU summit gathers, Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, insists she needs to get her twice-rejected deal through Parliament…
Alpha Beto: O’Rourke’s appeal
Mar 20 • 21 min
Beto O’Rourke launched his bid for America’s presidency. Despite his relative lack of experience, he’s already been raking in donations. We look at the source of his appeal. And palm oil is ubiquitous in many consumer goods used today, but it comes at a…
War and pestilence: Ebola makes a comeback
Mar 19 • 22 min
Five years ago Ebola spread across West Africa, killing more than 10,000 people. In August a fresh outbreak hit the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo. We look at why the response this time around has been so ineffective. NATO is about to turn 70. It…
Replacement anxiety: White supremacist terrorism
Mar 18 • 23 min
The terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, has left 50 people dead and a lot of unanswered questions. How big a threat are violent white supremacists? We take a look at a network of museums in China trying to commemorate that country’s murderous…
Can’t deal with it: Brexit
Mar 15 • 22 min
It’s been another brutal week for Britain’s prime minister as her deal to leave Europe was swatted down comprehensively—again. As a delay to Brexit looks likely, we ask what all the chaos reveals about how Brexit will ultimately play out. Ahead of global…
Lights out: Venezuela’s blackout
Mar 14 • 22 min
Power cuts in Caracas have endangered lives and deepened the misery of Venezuelans. It’s another sign of the corruption that pervades the Maduro regime. Also, how do you make a 10,000 ton ship disappear? And the Hebrew bible - otherwise known as the old…
Losing the plot: Brexit
Mar 13 • 21 min
The second defeat of British Prime Minister’s plan for withdrawal from the EU has weakened her. But what does it mean for the risk of a no-deal outcome? The chances of a Brexit delay are rising by the day. Competition between major powers for influence in…
Flying stop: Boeing
Mar 12 • 21 min
Following a second fatal crash of Boeing’s 737-MAX, China was quick to ground its fleet of the newish airliner. What does this mean for the world’s largest planemaker? In Russia, protests have broken out against President Vladimir Putin’s attempt to…
The sensitive month: Tibet
Mar 11 • 23 min
China’s party leaders get nervous in March—a month full of anniversaries that Tibetans hold dear. As the 60th anniversary of Tibet’s uprising approaches, security is tighter than usual. Corporate-risk managers are rotten at assessing their exposure to a…
Fifth time unlucky: Algeria’s protests
Mar 8 • 22 min
Widespread protests will continue today against the re-election run of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who hasn’t been heard from since a stroke in 2013. Algerians have had enough of their country’s proxy rule and misrule. We also ask if countries can…
Guilt and association: Paul Manafort
Mar 7 • 23 min
President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager can expect to have the book thrown at him at his sentencing today—the first for crimes revealed by Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Mr Trump’s campaign. Following a tense stand-off with…
Trudeau in trouble: a sunny leader in stormy times
Mar 6 • 19 min
Canada’s fresh-faced leader has been a icon for embattled liberals. But now he faces damaging accusations of meddling in a judicial process. Will Justin Trudeau be contrite or fight? And free money sounds like a grand idea. Here’s how universal basic…
Xi’ll meet again: China’s People’s Congress opens
Mar 5 • 20 min
The National People’s Congress of China gathers today for ten days of deliberations. Tensions with the West over the trade war and disagreement about the role of technology giant Huawei will be in the background. Bosses are not always the most reliable…
A thirsty world: the future of water
Mar 4 • 23 min
Fresh water is becoming increasingly scarce, as climate change and population growth puts greater pressure on resources. But the problem is one of mismanagement, rather than supply. When Jair Bolsonaro was sworn in as Brazil’s president in January, he…
Bibi one more time? Binyamin Netanyahu
Mar 1 • 22 min
Israel’s prime minister has been indicted, pending a hearing, just weeks before an election. We look at the charges he faces, and how he has already transformed the country’s politics. Huawei, a Chinese technology giant, has drawn global scrutiny of its…
Line of control: India-Pakistan
Feb 28 • 20 min
Air strikes by India and Pakistan this week represent a worrying flare-up of tensions that have simmered for years. We examine the forces and politics at play between the nuclear-armed powers. What’s causing the chill in the global manufacturing sector,…
Chaos and calculation: Brexit
Feb 27 • 22 min
Grand fissures have opened in Britain’s politics; the two main parties’ leaders are struggling to keep control. What does it all mean for Brexit, just a month away? As pharmaceutical companies defend their prices this week, we look at the push to use…
Two for the show: Trump meets Kim
Feb 26 • 20 min
As Kim Jong Un arrives in Vietnam ahead of a second summit with President Donald Trump, we ask about the real prospects for a nuclear-free Korean peninsula. Chicago votes for a new mayor today; we speak with Rahm Emanuel, the outspoken incumbent, about…
It’s bean difficult: the China-America trade war
Feb 25 • 23 min
As President Donald Trump delays further tariffs on $200bn-worth of Chinese goods, there are hints of an end to the trade war. We assess the damage already done by looking at the global soyabean market. Countries around the world are struggling with the…
Alms held up: Venezuela
Feb 22 • 20 min
Venezuela is in dire need of humanitarian aid, and Juan Guaidó, the interim president, has pledged to deliver it tomorrow. Will Nicolás Maduro, the dictatorial leader still formally in power, let him? Ahead of Warren Buffett’s annual letter to…
Sins of the fathers: the Vatican and child abuse
Feb 21 • 21 min
The Vatican is hosting a high-profile meeting on child abuse by the clergy. It’s a topic that has been woefully overlooked, and one that threatens to define the tenure of Pope Francis. We visit the world’s largest building, in the city of Chengdu. Inside…
Prince on tour: Muhammad bin Salman
Feb 20 • 19 min
Muhammad bin Salman, the Saudi crown prince, is on a tour of Asia, striking deals and trying to polish his image. What kind of influence will he have in the region? Every year as much as a quarter of the global corporate-tax bill is avoided—legally. We…
Labour’s love lost: British politics
Feb 19 • 19 min
Seven parliamentarians have split from Britain’s opposition Labour party. That could change the calculus of Brexit, and just might be the nucleus of a new movement. There’s a little-noticed shift in the relationship between Islam and the West; a new…
State of the unionising: Amazon
Feb 18 • 22 min
We examine the aftermath of the online behemoth’s withdrawal of its New York expansion plans, and speak with its Midwestern workers about growing talk of unionising. President Emmanuel Macron hopes to quell protests across France with a series of “town…
Emergency measures: America’s border deal
Feb 15 • 20 min
President Donald Trump is expected to declare a national emergency today, to fund his southern-border wall. We ask why that would be an uncomfortable constitutional precedent. Nigeria’s general election this weekend will be a nail-biter, and allegations…
IS this the end? Islamic State’s last stand
Feb 14 • 20 min
In Syria the few remaining Islamic State fighters are hemmed in. The caliphate’s territory may be diminished, but the idea will live on. A Valentine’s Day look at the digital dating market reveals the protocols and pitfalls of online matchmaking. And the…
It’s not easy: the Green New Deal
Feb 13 • 22 min
As America’s Senate majority leader pledges a vote on the Green New Deal, a sweeping set of policies around climate and much more, we examine just what the legislation does—and doesn’t—lay out. Following Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation address, we…
Independents’ day: Catalans on trial
Feb 12 • 19 min
Today 12 leaders of Spain’s Catalonia region go on trial, accused of rebellion. The proceedings will lay bare long-running tensions about democracy and unity. As Amy Klobuchar, a Minnesota senator, joins America’s presidential race, we ask whether her…
You say you want: Revisiting Iran’s revolution
Feb 11 • 24 min
We examine how the echoes of Iran’s revolution, 40 years ago, still influence how the Islamic Republic deals with the West today. Harley Davidson has become entangled in the Trump administration’s trade war just as changing demographics have put the…
Princess unbridled: Thai politics
Feb 8 • 19 min
A Thai princess enters the running for prime minister—a development that reshuffles the country’s centres of power completely. Our obituaries editor chronicles the heartbreak of an Iraqi archaeologist. And Chinese scientists have come up with a smarter…
The Intelligence: Weapons redrawn
Feb 7 • 19 min
After America and Russia pull out out of a cold war-era weapons treaty, we examine the picture of global stability without it. Our China columnist visits with members of the Hui, a repressed Muslim minority spread throughout the country. And Europe…
The Intelligence: Credible, but critical
Feb 6 • 21 min
Today the Trump administration is expected to announce its nomination for head of the World Bank today. He’s a Treasury official with a sharply critical view of the institution and, to a degree, he’s right. A troubled region of the Philippines heads to…
The Intelligence: Don’t despair, America
Feb 5 • 20 min
Tonight President Trump will deliver his State of the Union address; we ask what he’ll be saying, and what the state of the union really is. Yesterday the jury began its deliberations in the trial of “El Chapo”, an alleged Mexican drug lord. What impact…
The Intelligence: A despot’s calculation
Feb 4 • 18 min
Internal and international pressure on President Nicolás Maduro brings Venezuela to the brink of change. As Facebook turns 15, it’s lurching from crisis to crisis—and still making money hand over fist. We ask whether it has, on balance, been good for the…
The Intelligence: Be careful on the way out
Feb 1 • 22 min
As progress appears to have been made in peace talks between America and the Taliban, the Senate urges the Trump administration not to rush for the door in Afghanistan. Origami might be pretty, but it hides great scientific potential; it’s starting to…
The Intelligence: Down and out in “iPhone City”
Jan 31 • 18 min
As trade talks with China continue in Washington, our correspondent takes a trip to China’s “iPhone City” to see how the country’s slowdown is affecting workers. In El Salvador, a social-media darling leads the polls ahead of Sunday’s presidential…
The Intelligence: This is not a coup
Jan 30 • 27 min
International pressure is mounting on the dictatorial regime of Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro. As he hints at negotiations with a resurgent opposition, we ask how the country’s citizens make ends meet amid the misery. A striking American indictment will make…
The Intelligence: Deal, delay or dither?
Jan 29 • 21 min
It’s another crucial vote in the Brexit saga as Prime Minister Theresa May learns whether her leaving plan will be derailed or delayed. Autonomous weapons are coming along just as fast as autonomous vehicles are. But who’s tackling the ethics of killer…
The Intelligence: Trailer
Jan 22 • 2 min
The Intelligence is a new current-affairs podcast, published every weekday by Economist Radio, that provides a unique perspective on the events shaping your world. Drawing on the expertise of The Economist’s global network of correspondents, each episode…