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Council on Foreign Relations
The Next Chapter in Iraq

The Obama administration has made no secret of its desire to move Iraq down its list of priorities, behind Afghanistan, Iran, and a host of domestic issues. President Barack Obama's latest meeting in Washington with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, occurring in the midst of a...

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The Media Landscape in Iran

IntroductionIranian authorities have reinforced controls on major domestic media following the upheaval over contested presidential election results in June 2009. One month after the disputed vote, nearly forty journalists remained in Iranian prisons. Yet Iran's media landscape, like many aspects of the theocratic regime, is...

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The China-North Korea Relationship

IntroductionChina is North Korea's most important ally, biggest trading partner, and main source of food, arms, and fuel. China has helped sustain Kim Jong-Il's regime and opposed harsh international economic sanctions in the hope of avoiding regime collapse and an uncontrolled influx of refugees across...

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Progress and Challenges in India Trip

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's visit to India continued to point toward a strengthening of ties after a series of official and nontraditional diplomatic contacts. Clinton, the most senior Obama administration official to visit India, delivered a July 20 speech atĀ Delhi University stressing...

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Kashmir Militant Extremists

IntroductionMilitancy in the disputed region of Kashmir has been major fuel for discord between India and Pakistan since the 1980s. Attacks in the region began to increase in scale and intensity following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, when foreign insurgents flooded the region to join...

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Uighurs and China's Xinjiang Region

IntroductionThe Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR), a territory in western China, accounts for one-sixth of China's land and is home to about 20 million people from thirteen major ethnic groups. The largest of these groups is the Uighurs [PRON: WEE-gurs], a predominantly Muslim community with...

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Seeking Substance in Moscow

In April the metaphor was "reset," a reminder that U.S.-Russia relations had sunk to new lows during the final years of the Bush administration. But with President Barack Obama in Moscow for two days of meetings with Russian leaders, the focus is more on policy...

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Reassessing the Jackson-Vanik Amendment

IntroductionThe Jackson-Vanik Amendment, an addition to the U.S. Trade Act of 1974, was crafted to put pressure on the Soviet Union for human rights abuses but has become a symbol of lingering tensions in the U.S.-Russia relationship. In order to receive the benefits of normal...

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The Six-Party Talks on North Korea's Nuclear Program

IntroductionThe Six-Party Talks are aimed at ending North Korea's nuclear program through a negotiating process involving China, the United States, North and South Korea, Japan, and Russia. Since the talks began in August 2003, the negotiations have been bedeviled by diplomatic standoffs among individual Six-Party...

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A Shaky Iraq's Sovereign Step

Celebratory fireworks marked the withdrawal of U.S. troops from urban areas this week in Iraq, but mingling with the high spirits was unease in many quarters over the road ahead. As a number of analysts have noted, tensions between Sunni Arabs and Kurds in Iraq's...

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