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Saudi fans watching the World Cup first-round match against Poland at a fan zone in Doha.

REUTERS/Ibraheem Al Omari

World Cup in Doha: Ghost city by day, party town for Arabs by night

Iran Nuclear Deal Is Dead | World In :60 | GZERO Media

Iran nuclear deal is dead

Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week on World In :60.

Iran has announced it will enrich more uranium. Is the nuclear deal dead?

Yeah, it is pretty dead at this point. It is inconceivable to me that the Americans or allies would be prepared to cut a nuclear deal for an Iranian regime that is under this much domestic pressure and repressing its civilian population to this degree. Not to mention the fact that there's been attacks into Kurdish territories in Iraq over the last several days. There's been enormous amounts of state police repression with lots of instability. It's only growing, frankly. I can't imagine a nuclear deal getting cut here.

And that leads to the question of what the Israelis are going to do in response? What the Americans are going to do? What the Gulf States going to do in response? Because of course, none of these countries want the Iranians to go nuclear. There're nuclear breakout capabilities if they want to go that direction is a matter of weeks. So it's something we're going to watch carefully.

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Salem Al-Dawsari celebrates scoring Saudi Arabia's second goal against Argentina.

REUTERS/Marko Djurica

Saudi shocker is a victory for all Arabs — and a PR coup for MBS

Saudi Arabia's stunning victory over Argentina on Tuesday was one of the greatest upsets in World Cup history. The lowly Saudis defeated the mighty Argentines, overcoming odds so great that if you'd bet $100 on the Saudis, you'd have walked out with more than $2,200 in beer money. (Oops, you can't actually buy any beer at Qatar 2022.)

More importantly, it made the kingdom proud — and sent long-awaited ripples of soccer joy throughout the Arab world. Why?

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Annie Gugliotta

World Cup politics go way beyond Qatar

The 2022 World Cup now underway in Qatar is the most political edition of the tournament in decades. But it's also playing out politically far away from the host country in parts of the globe where fans often pay more attention to the sport than to their elected officials.

For instance, in Brazil, supporters of left-wing President-elect Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva want to reclaim the yellow jersey from the fans of outgoing far-right President Jair Bolsonaro. Brazilian progressives say Bolsonaro’s supporters co-opted the color of their five-time winning national side during the recent presidential election campaign.

Let’s find more examples from a few Eurasia Group soccer nuts, ahem, experts.

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A sculpture of the World Cup trophy is pictured in front of Khalifa International Stadium in Doha.

Reuters

Will politics or soccer win Qatar's World Cup?

Sunday is the day half the world has been eagerly awaiting for four years. The men's soccer World Cup — the most-watched event of the most popular sport on the planet — kicks off in, of all places, Qatar.

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A model of a natural gas pipeline, a Euro banknote and a torn EU flag placed on a Russian flag.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

Hard Numbers: EU gas price dip, Swedish camera thieves, Myanmar festival attack, Qatar vs. LGBTQ

100: The cost of burning natural gas to produce a megawatt hour of electricity in Europe has dipped below 100 euros ($99) for the first time since Russia began cutting supplies to the EU earlier this year. Experts say milder-than-expected weather and topped-up storage units are to thank for the price relief. Can it last?

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The logo of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project is seen at a rolling plant in Chelyabinsk, Russia.

REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

What We're Watching: Russian gas pipeline problems, China's economic slump, the other mobilization

Did someone blow up the Nord Stream pipelines?

The operator of the two Nord Stream gas pipelines, which run from Russia to Western Europe under the Baltic Sea, reported “unprecedented” leaks and massive pressure drops on Tuesday, stoking fears of foul play. Nord Stream was not actually carrying gas to Europe at the time — the EU froze approvals for the new Nord Stream 2 line after Russia invaded Ukraine, and Russia halted existing flows through Nord Stream 1 in August, blaming Western sanctions. But the incident comes as Europe bundles up for winter with substantially reduced shipments of Russian gas. Seismologists recorded explosions in the area on Monday, and European officials have suggested sabotage, but so far there is no hard evidence. Russian officials, for their part, lamented the incident’s impact on “energy security,” while some pro-government outlets have suggested American sabotage. If it were deliberate, who’d benefit most from blowing up a non-operational pipeline? Apart from the geopolitical intrigue, there are environmental concerns too — the line is now leaking gargantuan amounts of methane, churning up the sea off the Danish island of Bornholm.

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Qatar's Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani meets Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo, Egypt, June 2022.

Amiri Diwan via Reuters

Hard Numbers: Egypt-Qatar bonding, Thai activist jailed for dressing up, Hungary's ‘fetal heartbeat’ law, fatal kangaroo incident, Ken Starr dies

5: Egypt’s President Abdel Fatah-el Sisi visited Qatar on Tuesday for the first time in five years. In 2017, Egypt – along with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain – cut diplomatic ties with Doha, citing its support for terror groups, which Qatar denied. Mired in an economic crisis, Cairo now wants to boost economic ties with Qatar and other wealthy Gulf states.

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