Douglas Berger

The Economic Woes Behind Iranian Unrest

Iran’s Supreme Ruler, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has accused foreign powers of instigating the unrest that rocked the country for days earlier this month, claiming at least 22 lives. The protests—the largest since the disputed 2009 presidential election—began December 28 in the eastern city of Mashhad. They then spread nationwide, with […]

Rwanda: The Singapore Of Africa? Not So Fast

Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, is spotless. Plastic bags are banned. Traffic is orderly. Hawkers, panhandlers, and street prostitutes are almost nonexistent. The buses run on time. Even corruption—long the scourge of Rwanda’s Central African neighbors—is difficult to find. “Everywhere else in Africa you feel [corruption] from the traffic cop […]

Kremlin To Investigate Vote Boycott Called By Navalny

The Kremlin on Tuesday announced its desire to see Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny investigated for calling a boycott to the March 2018 Russian Presidential Election. Just hours later, hundreds of Russian celebrities, sports personalities, and politicians gathered to officially nominate President Vladimir Putin for re-election, Reuters reported. He is expected to win easily. […]

East Libyan General Hints At Presidential Run

East Libyan general Khalifa Haftar, whose forces control large swathes of the country, announced on Sunday he would listen to the will of the “free Libyan people,” according to Reuters. His statement was seen by analysts as a strong indication he planned to run in elections planned for next year. […]

Fueled By Coal: India’s Communist Insurgency Smolders On

On 27 June 2017, what was then the world’s largest communist insurgent group—Colombia’s FARC rebel group—handed its weapons over to the United Nations with a small ceremony in the city of Mesetas. President Juan Manuel Santos has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for orchestrating the deal, which seems to […]

Yemeni Ex-President Killed As Civil War Enters New Phase

The civil war in Yemen seemed to enter a new phase this week, as Ex-President Ali Abdullah Saleh was killed, Monday, during an attack on his convoy by Houthi rebels.  Forces loyal to Mr. Saleh and Houthi fighters have seen conflicts since Wednesday in the capital, Sanaa. According to The […]

Facing Pressure From China, North Korea Turns To Forced Labor In Russia

The United Nations estimates that more than 50,000 North Koreans are labourers in other countries, mainly in Russia and China. This forced labour program is critical for North Korea, as it pulls in between $1.2 billion and $2.3 billion, which is about 20% of the nation’s estimated military budget. Relations […]

Zimbabwe’s President Mugabe Refuses To Resign Amid Crisis

Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe shocked the country and the world on Sunday, making no mention of his expected resignation in a speech on state TV. Instead, the president vowed to stay on and preside over the ruling party’s congress in December, BBC News reports. “The congress is due in a […]

100 Billion Dollars, No Peace: US Foreign Aid In Afghanistan

Afghanistan has been in a state of civil war since 1979, when Soviet troops invaded the country in support of the recently installed communist regime. Since then, more than 1 million have died in successive conflicts. When the United States intervened to overthrow the Taliban in 2001, it had ambitions […]

ISIS Rapidly Losing Ground In Iraq And Syria

On Friday, Syrian government forces drove the last remaining pockets of ISIS militants from the eastern provincial capital of Deir al-Zour. Backed from the air by Russian bombardments and on the ground by Iranian-backed militias, Syrian forces are now advancing towards the strategic border town of Al Bukamal, BBC News […]