Foreign Policy

This magazine covers global politics and economics in its articles, essays and feature stories.

Articles from No. 195, September-October

Beijing Forever: In China's Pulsing Capital, Change Is the Only Constant
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] BEIJING, AS MOST CHINESE KNOW it, was a neglected relic after the Japanese occupation of World War II and the Chinese Civil War. In 1949, when the victorious communists moved the capital back there from Nanjing, it was a bankrupt...
Cities of the Future
FOR MUCH OF THE 20th century, the world looked to American cities for a glimpse of the future. Places like New York and Chicago had the tallest skyscrapers, the newest airports, the fastest highways, and the best electricity grids. But now, just...
Con Air: What In-Flight Magazines Don't Want You to Know about the World
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] BACK IN THE HEYDAY of Pan Am and Eastern Airlines, commercial flight was a thing of opulence, of rarity, of beauty. There is a reason the expression "jet set" still conjures images of the well-heeled swilling martinis while...
In Praise of Slums
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] THERE IS SOMETHING VISCERALLY REPULSIVE about urban poverty: the stench of open sewers, the choking smoke of smoldering trash heaps, the pools of fetid drinking water filmed with the rainbow color of chemical spills. It makes...
Interview: AI Weiwei: 'Twitter Is My City'
AI WEIWEI'S STUDIO compound sits behind high, ivy-covered gray brick walls on an isolated street in Beijing's shabby northeast outskirts. China's best-known dissident, architect, and creative provocateur, Ai used to travel around the country making...
Introducing ... the Most Dynamic Cities of 2025: An Exclusive Look at the 76 Powerhouses of the Urban Revolution
IF THERE'S ANY BRIGHT spot in an otherwise dim outlook for the global economy, it's the rise of cities. With fragile growth in Europe and the United States, the shift in economic balance toward the East and South is happening with unprecedented speed...
Leftist Planet: Why Do So Many Travel Guides Make Excuses for Dictators?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IN 1933, AS JOSEPH STALIN was busy purging his enemies and building a murderous cult of personality, the New York-based left-wing magazine the Nation advised readers interested in traveling to Moscow that Intourist, the Soviet...
Letter from the Editor
[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] IT'S ONLY FITTING that we've headlined this special issue of FOREIGN POLICY "The Rise of Chinese Cities," and in Mandarin. Because it's dedicated to the cities of the future, and the cities of the future are going...
Liar, Liar
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IS THERE ANY PROFESSION SO disliked and distrusted as "politician"? Only 7 percent of poll respondents give U.S. elected officials "high" or "very high" ratings when it comes to honesty and ethical standards, according to...
Mr. Happy: Wang Yang Is the Great Hope of China's Urban Intelligentsia, Is He about to Make the Big Time?
WHEN GUANGDONG Communist Party boss Wang Yang wanted to suggest some political readings for his underlings last year, he shunned Mao, Confucius, and other Chinese sages in favor of bestselling Israeli author Tal Ben-Shahar. The title he recommended...
Once upon a Time in Shanghai: Is History Repeating Itself in China's Glittering Global City?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] THE MEMBERS OF THE Harvard Medical School Class of '08 were exceedingly ambitious--even by Harvard standards. Not content merely to graduate from America's top med school, a small group of them set out to found an entirely...
PTSDland: How Do You Heal an Entire Country Suffering from Shell Shock?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] GOOGLE "AFGHANISTAN" and "post-traumatic stress disorder," and the search results will paint Odyssean portraits of thousands of American war veterans: restless and explosively violent, battling internal monsters, incapable...
Salman Rushdie
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] NEARLY 2.5 YEARS after The Satanic Verses, the controversial novel that inspired an Iranian fatwa against his life and forced his family into a decade of hiding, Salman Rushdie seems at ease, even giddy. After all, he's keeping...
Targeted Killing
U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA has taken George W. Bush's war on terror to a new level approving, as journalist David Rohde recently put it in FOREIGN POLICY, "more targeted killings than any modern president" through drone strikes against suspected militants...
The 75 Most Dynamic Cities
THE 75 MOST DYNAMIC CITIES POPULATION millions) RANK CITY COUNTRY 2010 2025 1 Shanghai China 22.3 ...
The East Is Rising: Meet the 29 Chinese Cities Powering Global Growth
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] 1. SHANGHAI Although Shanghai had no skyscrapers in 1980, it now has at least 4,000--more than twice as many as New York. In 2010, 208 million square feet of real estate, nearly 80 times the square footage of One World...
The Generals' General
GEN. RAYMOND T. ODIERNO didn't have the easiest first few months in his new job. In September 2011, he became U.S. Army chief of staff--the pinnacle of a decorated career that included 56 months in combat in Iraq--just weeks after President Barack...
The List: Jobs of the Future
IN 1945, WHEN MORE than 15,000 Manhattan elevator operators and maintenance workers went on strike, New York's skyline simply shut down. Business ground to a halt for a full workweek, causing Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia to desperately appeal for the strikers...
The November Surprise
THE MOST SHOCKING THING about October surprises is that they happen so regularly that they really ought not to be called surprises. If anything, they have become a staple of American presidential and congressional politics, further proof that political...
The Point Guard: Susan Rice Calls the Plays for Barack Obama at the United Nations. Could She Lead His Foreign-Policy Team Next? Should She?
THROUGHOUT THE SECOND WEEK of March 2011, the vastly outgunned rebel forces in Libya fell back before an onslaught by troops loyal to Muammar al-Qaddafi. In the United Nations Security Council, Britain and France lobbied desperately for a resolution...
The Renminbi Blues
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IMAGINE THAT IN 20 YEARS you're four times richer than you are today. Given that U.S. incomes have increased only slightly since the early 1990s, you'd probably be pretty happy, right? Not quite. The truth is that happiness...
Think Again: Obama's New Deal: The President's Republican Critics Are Dead Wrong. the Stimulus Worked
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] "Obama's Stimulus Package Was an Epic Failure That Haunted His Presidency." NO. U.S. President Barack Obama's $787 billion stimulus bill was certainly a political failure. Obama signed it during his first month in office,...
Tomorrow, We Save
WHY DO GERMANS revere austerity and fiscal discipline, while Greeks spend like there's no tomorrow? Why can't the United States convince China to consume more and save less? Yale University economist Keith Chen thinks par of the answer may be in language--particularly...
Weapons of Mass Urban Destruction: China's Cities Are Making the Same Mistake America Made on the Path to Superpower Status
IN THE LAST FIVE YEARS, China has built 20,000 miles of expressways, finishing the construction of 12 national highways a whopping 13 years ahead of schedule and at a pace four times faster than the United States built its interstate highway system....
Who Broke the U.N.? Long a Target for "Reform," the United Nations Has Taken Heat for a Bloated Bureaucracy and Gridlocked Security Council. FP Surveyed Top Experts about What Role It Should Play in Today's Ever-More-Tangled Global Conflicts, with Madeleine Albright Guiding Us through the Results
THE AMOUNT OF TIME that has been spent in think tanks and inside the U.S. State Department trying to figure out whether and how to reform the United Nations would be impossible to calculate. The refrain of "U.N. reform" is heard over and over, yet...
Why Bad Politics = Even Worse Markets
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] LIKE AN EARTHQUAKE rocking a house, the 2008 global financial crisis exposed a shaky new foundation underpinning Western economies. Just look at Europe, where cascading debt crises have made paupers...