What We're Watching: The Mueller Report, Strife in Sudan

The Mueller Report – On Thursday, the US Department of Justice is expected to release a redacted version of the nearly 400-page report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Much of the media will focus on what the report says about any contacts between the Trump campaign and the Russian government during the 2016 election, as well as any efforts by the President to obstruct the investigation. But we'll be watching to learn more detail on all the ways Russia tried to influence the last election and what can be done to prevent Moscow, or anyone else, from doing the same in 2020.

Strife in Sudan – Amid surging popular protests, Sudan's military ousted President Omar Bashir last week after 30 years in power and set up a "military council" to run the country for two years. When that didn't placate the streets, the defense minister who led the coup stepped down too. A protest spokesman says demonstrators want a fully civilian government and the prosecution of many former officials. We'll be watching to see whether the army keeps its cool. More importantly, senior military officials in Algeria and Venezuela are watching to see what happens when ousting a strongman isn't enough to quiet angry crowds.

What We're Ignoring: Underwater Meetings, Ukraine's non-Debate

Seychelles Underwater Cabinet Meeting – The President of the Seychelles, an Indian Ocean archipelago, delivered a speech last weekend on the importance of protecting the world's seas. The broadcast earned international attention because the president, Danny Faure, delivered it from a submersible vehicle 400 feet beneath the surface of the sea. No one can ignore Faure's message on behalf of the world's oceans. But we're ignoring the stunt itself because in 2009 the government of the Maldives held an entire cabinet meeting underwater.

Ukraine's presidential debate – On Sunday, Ukraine's embattled President Petro Poroshenko held a debate against an empty podium after his opponent, the comedian Volodymyr Zelenskiy, skipped the event. Zelenskiy has now agreed to debate Poroshenko on Friday at Kiev's Olympic Stadium. The spectacle might be fun to watch, but we're ignoring the debate itself, because if Ukrainian voters cared about the finer points of policy right now, Zelenskiy (who plays a president on TV) wouldn't have made the runoff—much less find himself the odds-on favorite to be elected president this Sunday.

We pay little attention to the waves of the sea, yet they are the greatest unused source of renewable energy in the world. Meet ISWEC and Power Buoy, two interesting new technologies used to harness this energy. Learn more about the extraordinary power of waves in this episode of Eni's Energy Shot series, where we investigate interesting facts and trends about energy.

Ukraine is once again in a tough spot.

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2.8 billion: Chinese regulators fined e-commerce giant Alibaba a record $2.8 billion — about four percent of its 2019 revenue — for abusing its dominant market position and forcing merchants to operate exclusively on its platform. Alibaba founder Jack Ma has fallen out with Beijing in recent months after the billionaire publicly criticized China's regulators for stifling innovation in technology.

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Vaccine nationalism, where countries prioritize their own citizens before the rest of the world, has been effective for rich nations like the United States and Israel. But leaving behind so much of the global population isn't just a humanitarian issue. It could prolong the pandemic, according to the World Health Organization's Chief Scientist, Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, who argues that what the global vaccination effort most urgently lacks are doses, not dollars. In a wide-ranging interview with Ian Bremmer on GZERO World, she calls for a large increase in the global vaccine supply in order to prevent the rise of more dangerous and vaccine-evading super-variants. She also weighs in on a controversial new WHO report investigating the origins of COVID-19 and suggests we may be seeing alternative vaccine forms, like nasal sprays, sooner than we think.

Listen: Soumya Swaminathan calls for a massive increase in the global vaccine supply in order to prevent the rise of more dangerous and vaccine-evading super-variants, in a wide-ranging interview with Ian Bremmer on the GZERO World podcast. Dr. Swaminathan, Chief Scientist at the World Health Organization, argues that vaccine nationalism, where countries prioritize their own citizens ahead of the rest of the world, will only prolong the pandemic because a virus does not stop at any national border. She also weighs in on a controversial new WHO report investigating the origins of COVID-19 and discusses when she thinks the world's children should get vaccinated. In addition, she suggests we may see alternative vaccine forms, like nasal sprays, sooner than we think.

Subscribe to the GZERO World Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or your preferred podcast platform to receive new episodes as soon as they're published.

India, the world's third largest emitter of carbon dioxide, is one of the countries worst affected by climate change. But it takes issue with those now asking it to clean up its act. Why, the Indians ask, should we give up our right to get rich by burning fossil fuels like you developed economies have done for generations?

That's precisely the message that India's energy minister had for the US and other wealthy nations at a recent Zoom summit after they pressured Delhi to set a future deadline for net zero emissions. For India, he explained, such targets are "pie in the sky" aspirations that do little to address the climate crisis the country faces right now.

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The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics are nearly a year away, but discussion of a potential boycott is already stoking tensions on both sides of the US-China relationship. Officials in Washington and other Western capitals are coming under mounting pressure from activists to respond to human rights abuses in China. An increasingly assertive Beijing, meanwhile, vigorously rejects any foreign criticism of what it regards as internal issues.

The last time the US boycotted an Olympics was in 1980, when it withdrew from the Summer Olympics in Moscow to protest the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan. Four years later, the Soviet Union repaid in kind by skipping the Games in Los Angeles. Would the US and its allies do something like that again? And how might China respond? Eurasia Group analysts Neil Thomas and Allison Sherlock explain the drivers of the boycott movement and its possible fallout.

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In two weeks, US President Joe Biden will be hosting an online "climate summit" to mark Earth Day. He'll ask China and India to sign up to America's ambitious new plan to slow down climate change. Will they go for it? China is the world's largest polluter, but Beijing is rolling out solar and wind power as fast as it's burning coal. India, meanwhile, is loathe to pick up the slack for rich countries that polluted their way to wealth and now want everyone else to agree to emissions cuts. No matter what happens, any successful plan to reduce global emissions will require buy-in from these three nations which, along with the European Union, account for almost 60 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions nowadays. Here's a look at emissions by the world's top polluters compared to everyone else over the last two decades.

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