After Saudi Arabia — the world's top oil exporter — launched an oil price war over the weekend, global crude prices suffered their biggest drop in decades, roiling financial markets already panicky about the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the world economy. Lower prices per barrel — they are currently hovering in the 30s — will be a headache for the world's main oil-exporting countries, but some are more vulnerable than others. Here's a look at the oil price that select exporters need in order for their national budgets to stay balanced.
French President Emmanuel Macron said last year that NATO, now more than 70 years old, was experiencing "brain death," citing a lack of coordination within the alliance and America's suddenly uncertain commitment to the bloc's mutual defense treaty obligations. Here's a look at how people in NATO member states (and from a few non-member countries) view the alliance.
As the world slouches towards a new era of US-China global rivalry, the European Union is trying to redefine its global role for the 21st century. But how do Europeans themselves feel about Europe's importance on the world stage? Here's a look at how Europeans feel about whether the EU's voice matters globally.
The 2020 Iowa Democratic Caucuses, a critical early contest on the path to winning the nomination, begin tonight. After that, the pace of the primaries picks up fast, with important contests in New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina. Here's the latest polling of the frontrunners in each of those states. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders tops polls in Iowa and New Hampshire, but former Vice President Joe Biden is number one in Nevada and has a commanding lead in South Carolina.
Qassim Suleimani, the recently slain Iranian general, was named head of Iran's elite, paramilitary Quds Force in the late 1990s. Suleimani then became widely known for expanding his country's regional influence by bolstering (mainly) Shiite proxy forces around the Middle East to counter US, Saudi, and Israeli influence. Here's a look at militias and proxies in the region that are now broadly aligned with Iran.
The collapse of the Islamic State's self-declared caliphate in Iraq and Syria has given rise to a host of new challenges for governments around the world. Turkey has captured thousands of ISIS fighters as a result of its offensive in northern Syria, many of whom are foreign nationals who left their home countries to fight with the Islamic State. To date, non-Middle East countries have mostly opposed ISIS fighters returning home, leaving them, and their spouses and children, in legal limbo. Here's a look at where these foreign fighters come from.
In recent years, Republicans have come to dominate most of the state legislatures in the US. Ironically, it was during the Obama-era that the GOP made major headway in states that had long been considered safely blue. State legislatures are now redder than they've been in nearly a century, and in most parts of the country, one party holds all the levers of power (governorship and legislatures). For the first time since 1914, there's only one split legislature in the entire country: Minnesota. To be sure, some state races are bucking the trend: Kentucky and Louisiana, both deep-red states, recently elected Democratic governors. Here's a look at how Democratic and Republican control of state legislatures has evolved over the past four decades.