Society and Culture News

ISIS Says the Quran Allows Enslaving Women. Will Clerical Leaders Respond?

Oct 14, 2014
"Islamic State militants crossed a last possible boundary of decency by citing the Quran as authority for the barbarism they have been practicing against women. Equally disturbing, Arab leaders and the ulama, the clerical leaders of Islam, have been silent in the face of this effrontery," writes Haleh Esfandiari.

The Iranian Sphere of Influence Expands Into Yemen

Oct 09, 2014
"The implications of events in Yemen extend beyond its borders. If the Houthis secured Bab Al Mandab and the sea in Al Hudaydah governorate, another strategic waterway, they would control the traffic from the Suez Canal and the Persian Gulf, a sobering prospect for those worried about increased Iranian influence in the region,"

Why Kobani Matters

Oct 09, 2014
"Thundering air power can be daunting, but sometimes the effect is more psychological than physical. Big costly bombs fired by big costly warplanes have been knocking a fair number of “armed vehicles,” which may be little more than a pick-up truck with a weapon mounted on the back. But they have not yet set back the ISIS campaign in Syria," writes Robin Wright.

Demanding Democracy in Hong Kong

Oct 02, 2014
"This is a key moment for the students. The chief executive is certainly not going to leave and the crowds are now smaller than they have been; it is reasonable to assume that those who remain are more radical, are willing to go a little bit further," says Robert Daly.

A Republican for Attorney General?

Oct 02, 2014
"At this point in his presidency, Barack Obama has an opportunity to build consensus. With Eric Holder’s resignation, he should consider taking this opportunity to mend fences and revive a Cabinet once billed as a 'team of rivals.' So how about a Republican for attorney general?" writes Jane Harman.

China’s New Identity Crisis

Oct 02, 2014
"Hong Kong’s problem will continue for as long as the structural sources of conflict cannot be addressed. The identity crises in Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Taiwan, and Tibet will surely become Beijing’s real tests and dilemmas. How well the Chinese leadership deals with these crises will determine China’s rise and future development," writes Global Fellow Zheng Wang.

Hong Kong is Not Tiananmen

Oct 02, 2014
"At first glance, Russia's ally China seems to be in big trouble, with the protests in Hong Kong and fears of a new Tiananmen Square. Yet they might be overblown. Given the current situation in Hong Kong, China’s most likely course of action is to make some concessions, arrest protest leaders and discipline local authorities," writes Fellow Jack Goldstone.

How Modi’s Evolution From Pariah to Pop Star Could Boost U.S.-India Ties

Oct 01, 2014
"There is something distinctly American about Mr. Modi. His rise from a tea-seller’s son to high office through hard work and a strong embrace of the free market is reminiscent of a Horatio Alger rags-to-riches tale. Additionally, Mr. Modi’s courtship of the Indian diaspora and U.S. business is freighted with positive implications for bilateral ties," says Michael Kugelman.

All the Truth Is Out: The Week Politics Went Tabloid

Sep 30, 2014
Matt Bai, Public Policy Scholar from 2013, recently published his new book, All the Truth Is Out: The Week Politics Went Tabloid, which he worked on during his time at the Wilson Center. The book looks at 1988 Democratic presidential candidate Gary Hart, who withdrew from the race following intense media scrutiny after an alleged affair.

Addicted to Putin

Sep 30, 2014
"Russians have come to depend on their belief in Putin as much as he depends on their support. Instead of serving as a source of stability, as it did in the past, this mutual dependence is driving Russia toward political and economic isolation – with serious consequences for ordinary Russians’ livelihoods," writes Maxim Trudolyubov.

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