Foreign Policy

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

Articles from No. 193, May-June

Abdullah Gul
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] AS THE FIRST openly devout president of Turkey, Abdullah Gul believes his country can be a model for the new wave of Islamic democracies sprouting across the Arab world. But a region that seemed so hopeful when Gul landed...
A Better Dictator: If You Have to Live under an Authoritarian Regime, Which Kind Is Best?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] It SEEMS PRETTY obvious that democratic governments are less corrupt and provide better services to their citizens than autocracies, right? Wrong. Well, at least not all the time. In fact, Transparency International's widely...
A Giant among Giants: Glencore-Founded by Famous Fugitive IV Rich-Has Cornered the Market on Just about Everything. Now That It's Going Public, Will Its Ties to Dictators and Spies Stand Up to Scrutiny?
WHEN GLENCORE, the world's biggest commodities brokerage firm, went public in May 2011, the initial public offering (IPO) on the London and Hong Kong stock exchanges made headlines for weeks in the Financial Times and the trade-industry press, which...
Get an MBA, Save the World
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] PERHAPS IT'S THE combined Twitter power of the Two Bills (Gates and Easterly), but working in development is hot, and not just for their 5.9 million followers. I'm not kidding: The website GradSchools.com lists 204 master's...
Letter from the Editor
IN THE UNITED STATES, when magazines devote special issues to sex, they are usually of the celebratory variety (see: Esquire, April 2012 edition; Cosmopolitan, every month). Suffice it to say that is not what we had in mind with FOREIGN POLICY'S first-ever...
"Smart Sanctions"
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] AS A BLUNT tool Of diplomacy, the concept of sanctions has been around at least from the time of the ancient Greeks, when Athens imposed a trade embargo on its neighbor Megara in 432 B.C. Since then, there has been a long...
Still the One: Muammar Al-Qaddafi May Be History in Libya, but in This Remote African Kingdom He Reigns Supreme
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] FORT PORTAL, Uganda THERE'S A PLACE in Africa where Col. Muammar al-Qaddafi is still king, but it's a long way from his unmarked grave deep in the Libyan desert. To get there, you have to travel south through the searing...
Teaching Intolerance: You Should See What Even First Graders Have to Read in Saudi Arabia
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IN THE YEARS just before the 9/11 attacks, I spent two semesters at a public school in Riyadh for my training as a teacher. I was stationed each day at the campus gates, instructed to inspect the girls' abayas as they left...
The Ayatollah under the Bed (Sheets)
IN THE EARLY YEARS OF THE IRANIAN' REVOLUTION, an obscure cleric named Ayatollah Gilani became a sensation on state television by contemplating bizarre hypotheticals at the intersection of Islamic law and sexuality. One of his most outlandish scenarios--still...
The Bedroom State: The New Politics of Sex from Iran to India and 7 Countries in Between
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The Unexpected Beneficiaries of Sex-Selective Abortion The increasingly prevalent practice of sex-selective abortion in several Asian countries-the product of modern medical techniques meeting ancient gender prejudices--is...
The End of History in the New Libya
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] TRIPOLI, Libya "OUR ENEMIES ARE targeting our nationality and our beliefs.... Throughout their history, the Arabs have faced one foreign enemy with one ambition: to divide us up." So began the first day of school for...
The Enemy Within
THE UNITED STATES IS a bit like a 375-pound, middle-aged man with a heart condition walking clown a city street at night eating a Big Mac. He's sweating profusely because he's afraid he might get mugged. But the thing that's going to kill him is the...
The FP Survey Women in Politics
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton described her 2008 presidential campaign as an effort to break ... 'THAT HIGHEST, HARDEST GLASS CEILING' Do you think the "highest, hardest" barrier to entering politics is gender? YES 27 "Politics...
The Last Kings of Africa
Being king isn't what it used to be. There are fewer than 30 monarchies remaining in the world, and in most of them, the ruler's function is purely ceremonial. But in Africa--even though most countries have ditched official monarchies--hundreds of...
The Most Powerful Women You've Never Heard Of: Meet 25 of the World's Most Influential Female Leaders
1. HELEN CLARK Administrator, U.N. Development Program | New Zealand [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] As New Zealand's prime minister, Helen Clark oversaw a decade of economic growth and won three straight terms in her post after a long career as a...
The Qatar Bubble: Can This Tiny, Rich City-State Really Solve the Middle East's Thorniest Political Conflicts?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] SULTAN AL QASSEMI, the Emirati commentator and prolific tweeter, jokes that he tries to post one article every day on the rise of Qatar, the tiny Gulf sheikhdom at the heart of the Arab Spring. There's a formula, he says....
The Startling Plight of China's Leftover Ladies
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The Spicy Love doctor was running late. A well-heeled crowd one recent Sunday afternoon had packed into the second-floor lounge of Beijing's Trends Building--home to the publishing offices of several glossy magazines, including...
The War Reporter
MARTHA RADDATZ ISN'T one to shy away from danger. As senior foreign affairs correspondent for ABC News, she has leapt out of helicopters in Afghanistan, ridden shotgun in F-15 fighter jets, and been out on night patrols in Iraq's Sadr City. "I'm kind...
Think Again: Al Qaeda: A Year after Osama Bin Laden's Death, the Obituaries for His Terrorist Group Are Still Wax, Too Premature
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] "Al Qaeda Is on the Brink of Defeat." KEEP DREAMING. Osama Bin LADEN was fond of recounting the following parable from the Quran to rally his followers in times of despair: A much-better-armed Christian army employed...
Why Do They Hate US?
IN "DISTANT VIEW OF A MINARET," the late and much-neglected Egyptian writer Alifa Rifaat begins her short story with a woman so unmoved by sex with her husband that as he focuses solely on his pleasure, she notices a spider web she must sweep off the...
Why Women Are a Foreign Policy Issue Seriously, Guys
ON A TRIP to Afghanistan in the summer of 2009, not long after my appointment as the U.S. State Department's ambassador at large for global women's issues, I stopped for dinner with a group of Afghan women activists in Kabul. One woman opened our conversation...
Yes, She Can a Report from the Glass Ceiling
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] THERE'S NO SHORTAGE of data showing that men rule the political world: Women make up just 20 percent of the world's parliaments and constitute about 17 percent of cabinet positions. Why aren't there more women leaders, and...
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