June, 2018

Election preview: Colombia

, Jun 17, 2018

A left-right contest in Colombia puts in question the country's economic future and the continuation of the peace deal with its left-wing rebels.

Lebanon goes to the polls at last

, May 08, 2018

Lebanon's long-delayed general election is a poor result for its prime minister, but he may still contrive to keep his job.

Recommended weekly reading

, Apr 18, 2018

A new feature: links to some recent material that readers should find interesting.

Remembering My Lai

, Mar 21, 2018

One from the archive, as the Vietnam War recedes further into the past.

Good news and bad news in Liberia

, Dec 29, 2017

Another step forward for democracy in West Africa, but it brings reminders of a brutal civil war.

The Bolshevik putsch, 100 years on

, Nov 08, 2017

Lenin and the Bolsheviks took power a century ago. Much blood has flowed under the bridge since then.

Election preview: Japan

, Oct 22, 2017

Prime minister Shinzo Abe is seeking a fresh mandate, and seems unlikely to have much trouble getting it.

Self-determination, here and there

, Sep 28, 2017

Catalonia has no chance of getting a credible vote for independence this week. Kurdistan has already got one, but it's not doing it much good.

Kurdistan’s turn

, Aug 22, 2017

Iraq's Kurds say they're pushing forward with a referendum on independence, but the nature of their strategy remains a little unclear.


, Aug 18, 2017

Some further thoughts on the moral catastrophe that is Trumpism.

Oh dear, it’s North Korea again

, Aug 14, 2017

North Korea is staging its regular return to the headlines. Don't panic.

The war against Arab democracy

, Jul 03, 2017

The conflict with Qatar is fundamentally about the possibility of democracy in the Arab world. That's why Saudi and Trumpian autocrats are on the same side.

South Korea turns left

, May 10, 2017

South Korea turns its back on ten years of conservative leadership, and a peacemaker takes over just when he's needed.

The Trump plan for Mid-East peace

, Feb 16, 2017

Courtesy of both President Trump and the "facts on the ground", Israel and Palestine seem to be headed for a one-state solution. Is it time to accept that outcome and focus on making it work?

Mr Putin cashes in

, Feb 06, 2017

Eastern Ukraine could be the first big test of just where appeasement of Russia will lead.

Democracy on the march in West Africa

, Jan 19, 2017

Conflict looms in Gambia over a contested election result, but it's likely to be very one-sided.

What does Israel want?

, Jan 05, 2017

The season of peace and goodwill has produced little of either in the Middle East. But as a negotiated peace between Israelis and Palestinians looks ever more remote, no-one seems willing to spell out the alternatives.

Spain, eighty years on

, Jul 20, 2016

Spain marks another anniversary, but the lessons of the civil war have a special resonance this year for the rest of the world as well.

Disunited Kingdom, European Disunion

, Jun 29, 2016

A look at the winners and losers from the British referendum result.

Justice for genocide

, Mar 31, 2016

Radovan Karadžić, unsurprisingly, is convicted of war crimes. Why do we bother?