Al Jazeera Digital

US digital dollar: Will fiat currency ride the crypto wave? (7/12/2021) Two major research projects are under way to see if the US central bank should begin minting digital money.

Bezos legacy gets mixed reviews as he exits Amazon CEO role (7/2/2021) Admirers laud the Amazon empire Bezos built, but labour activists and monopoly watchdogs question how he did it.

Group of Seven: Here’s what’s on the agenda (6/10/2021) G7 leaders are meeting to rally democratic spirits and develop deals on global taxes and COVID-19 vaccine distribution.

‘New Black Wall Street’: Closing wealth gap a century after Tulsa (6/1/2021) Non-profits aim to close the racial wealth gap by boosting financial literacy on subjects ranging from crypto to stocks.

Black gold blues: Climate wins signal sea change for Big Oil (5/28/2021) Environmental defeats against ExxonMobil and Shell show energy giants could be forced to decarbonise more aggressively.

Amazon shareholder meeting: Push to put an hourly worker on board (5/26/2021) Efforts to elevate labour concerns come amid allegations of monopolistic practices and environmental racism.

Red Black & Green New Deal: Climate agenda for Black Lives Matter (5/25/2021) One year after the murder of George Floyd, Al Jazeera examines the intersection of racial and climate justice.

Excitement and anxiety on eve of New York City reopening (5/18/2021) Governor Andrew Cuomo says state’s restart critical, but urges New Yorkers to keep taking proper COVID precautions.

After Musk Bitcoin U-turn, which coins are more climate friendly? (5/13/2021) Bitcoin and Ether are the most environmentally unfriendly crypto tokens, but there are alternatives.

Minnesota’s racial divide: Will land bridge right Rondo’s wrongs? (5/11/2021) ReConnect Rondo is pushing for a $460m land bridge to support Black-owned enterprises and right historical wrongs.

How much is that Dogecoin in the window worth? (5/7/2021) In the span of several weeks, the ‘joke’ coin has rocketed in value, with help from Musk and massive day-trader momentum.

Will raising the US capital gains tax help tackle inequality? (4/29/2021) President Joe Biden hopes that lifting rates for top earners will raise beaucoup bucks for the American Families Plan.

Crypto Climate Accord: Bitcoin greenwashing or game-changer? (4/27/2021) Pact seeks to shrink crypto’s carbon footprint, but critics say it could thwart more effective government-led policies. 27 Apr 2021

Biden climate summit: Are ambitious carbon cuts even enough? (4/23/2021) As Earth Day Summit continues, some activists are demanding more systemic change to tackle the climate crisis.

Earth Day Summit: Biden sets tone with stronger climate pledge (4/22/2021) Summit aims to reassert US leadership on climate crisis, but activists like Greta Thunberg are keeping up pressure.

Carbon in the sky and climate change: Earth Day by the numbers (4/22/2021) Could carbon pricing be a silver bullet for the climate crisis?

Earth Day Summit: Biden’s chance to claim climate leadership (4/21/2021) Biden is trying to shepherd world leaders towards stronger climate goal commitments after disengagement under Trump.

Biden’s railroad plans: Rail renaissance or just ‘train envy’? (4/15/2021) Biden wants the US to go big with train investment, even if ‘high-speed rail’ does not appear in his proposal.

Pros, cons and pragmatism: Biden’s plan to fund infrastructure (4/8/2021) The American Jobs Plan appears popular, but raising corporate taxes to pay for it is not seen by all as a silver bullet.

Does Biden’s American Jobs Plan go big enough on climate change? (4/7/2021) While many environmentalists see big steps in the right direction, some say Biden’s proposal isn’t ambitious enough.

Biden unveils $2T American Jobs Plan to boost infrastructure (3/31/2021) The White House is set to announce big plans for everything from highway bridges to electric vehicle charging stations.

NFT craze: Why are non-fungible tokens all the rage? (3/26/2021) Explaining the popularity of digital art with ownership recorded on blockchain and purchased in cryptocurrency.

Virtual land and spaceships: NFTs and the new crypto frontier (3/26/2021) A new twist on the American dream is taking root in virtual worlds, where investors buy parcels of land.

Climate concerns to crime: Bitcoin’s dark side draws scrutiny (3/17/2021) From money laundering and capital flight to its carbon footprint, Bitcoin is falling in the crosshairs of regulators.

Haaland hearings signal uphill battle for Biden’s climate agenda (3/5/2021) Deb Haaland would be the first Native American to hold a cabinet post if confirmed.

The value of ‘digital gold’: What is bitcoin actually worth? (2/26/2021) Will investing in cryptocurrencies make you rich or just drain your digital wallet? Here’s what to know.

In extreme Texas cold, Green New Deal turns into hot potato (2/20/2021) Democrats blame climate change for the historic freeze, but Republicans say clean energy worsened the crisis.

US lawmakers grill key figures in GameStop stock probe (2/18/2021) The US House Committee on Financial Services will question CEOs from Robinhood, Reddit and several hedge funds.

Doge days: Elon Musk and Tesla place double bet on cryptocurrency (2/12/2021) With social media hype and big investment, Tesla’s eccentric CEO is betting that the future is crypto.

GameStop and the rise of Reddit-fuelled day traders (2/1/2021) Many Reddit-based traders have found an increased appetite for risk after banding together to oppose Wall Street pros.

GameStop: Why social media-driven traders are beating Wall Street (1/28/2021) Retail traders using Reddit have quickly overturned conventional wisdom about who holds sway in US equity markets.

Ecuadorian Amazon: Three European banks stop funding trade of oil (1/25/2021) BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse and ING have announced plans to exclude the problematic export from their trading activities in response to environmental criticisms.

At 50, EPA pivots from Trump chopping block to Biden future (12/2/2020) Defanged after four years of Trump deregulation, the EPA is set to be reinvigorated under Biden.

Arnold Ventures

Driver’s License Suspension Reform Act Paves Way for Justice Improvements Nationally (4/12/2021) In New York State, the punitive measure had been common for people who failed to pay traffic fines and fees.

When Police Become Tax Collectors (2/1/2021) Local governments that rely on criminal justice revenues to balance budgets undermine the relationship between law enforcement and communities.

How Legal Barriers Obstruct Police Reform Collective (1/24/2021) Bargaining and law enforcement officers’ bills of rights can undermine accountability. Any lasting policing reform efforts must find ways to substantially lower or remove these barriers.

The Cost of Police Conduct Litigation (1/13/2021) What don’t we know about holding police accountable?

Research Shows Unnecessary PPP Loan Exclusions Exacerbated Racial Disparities (7/27/2020) Black and Latino business owners were more likely to face exclusion from the SBA-administered Paycheck Protection Program.

The World (co-production of PRX & GBH)

Arab uprisings began with quest for freedom and led to repression, wars (12/16/2021) What started as a series of idealistic revolutions turned into dashed dreams of democracy and revival of authoritarian governance. The decade since has seen yet more instability and violence.

American voters never forget — it’s the economy, stupid (10/28/2020) Though voters who prioritize the economy above other issues used to prefer Donald Trump, high unemployment and uncertainty have pushed many Americans toward Joe Biden’s camp.

How Biden and Trump would remake the Iran nuclear deal (10/23/2020) With incumbent Donald Trump having withdrawn from the landmark agreement, his Democratic challenger would more likely seek to get the JCPOA back on track.

How Russia benefits from disrupting the US election, again (10/16/2020) Moscow meddled in the 2016 election, but hasn’t entirely done well with the Trump administration. Yet a Biden presidency could be much worse for the Kremlin.

How the next US president could vanquish the coronavirus (10/9/2020) With the United States facing the highest death toll in the world, next month’s election is a referendum on which candidate voters believe will decisively defeat COVID-19.

Both candidates’ platforms underline US struggle to confront China (10/1/2020) With China flexing its muscles like never before, Donald Trump and Joe Biden try to convince voters that their policies will be better for trade, technology and human rights. They also promise to lessen US dependence on Beijing, a campaign pledge that may prove difficult to fulfill.

Biden clashes with Trump in tale of two climate narratives (9/25/2020) Though the presidential contenders disagree on many issues, perhaps none is as stark as their fundamental divergence on the issue of global warming and how to reverse ecological doom.

Digital Trends

Lyft’s ambitious EV promise may give the industry a jump-start (6/22/2020) Fulfilling its commitment will require a major push to help drivers

Climate change could collide with coronavirus to create a summer from hell (6/5/2020) Scorching temperatures may make lockdown measures even more challenging

The meat industry could spawn the next pandemic, new report finds (6/3/2020)  ‘We are just in the middle of a perfect storm right now’

AJ Impact

UBI: Is recession pushing the US towards permanent cash payments? (7/17/2020) As Congress prepares to debate the next economic stimulus package, UBI pilot projects are underway.

Black Lives Matter protests spotlight environmental racism (6/19/2020) Activists push green-led economic recovery to tackle systemic imbalances.

Earth Day: Coronavirus crisis offers big green opportunity (4/22/2020) Economic disruptions caused by COVID-19 lockdowns present a unique environmental moment for action on climate change.

US coronavirus ‘czar’ struggles to fix broken supply chains (4/6/2020) Critics of the Trump administration say the armed forces should play a bigger role in the fight against coronavirus.

Coronavirus toll in New York City exposes wider inequalities (4/3/2020) Geographic data shows a disproportionate number of low-income area residents suffering amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Is a government bailout of US shale oil still in the cards? (3/31/2020) US oil producers – hit by coronavirus demand shock and price war – have yet to see a rescue package materialise.

Despite long odds, Bernie Sanders refuses to cede Democratic race (3/27/2020) Sanders and his fervently loyal supporters hope to influence policy and pursue the slim chance of a resurgence.

Analysis: A Democratic star rises in the coronavirus gloom (3/24/2020) NY Governor Andrew Cuomo’s briefings deliver a daily dose of measured rationality to assuage deep fears of coronavirus.

Coronavirus could destroy 10 million US jobs, economists fear (3/22/2020) While experts disagree on the scale of the impact on workers, the hit is likely to be swift and severe.

Will a US airline bailout come with serious strings attached? (3/20/2020) Airline workers and many economists say Congress should not just give a blank cheque to the struggling aviation sector.

Can Trump’s plan to give away money ease coronavirus blow? (3/18/2020) The White House pushes the prospect of $1,000 direct cash payments to Americans to cushion fallout from coronavirus.

Are financial giants contradicting their own climate pledges? (3/14/2020) Report says corporate-level financing by five big firms contributes to oil drilling in the Amazon.

Coronavirus is curbing carbon emissions (3/11/2020) COVID-19 is slowing economies and emissions, and experts say greener criteria could help avert future outbreaks.

What is driving US drug prices higher? (3/3/2020) JAMA study of US prescription drug costs, after discounts, shows alarming price increase 3 times the rate of inflation.

‘Too soon to tell’: Coronavirus could take big toll on US economy (2/27/2020) While Trump walks tightrope on economic impacts of outbreak, experts say course of destruction may be hard to predict.

Climate crisis puts critical transport infrastructure at risk (2/25/2020) UNECE study highlights which European road, rail and river networks face major threats.

Ukraine climate groups demand fast transition to renewable energy (2/21/2020) Local activists with global support have petitioned the government ministry in Kyiv to go fully carbon-neutral by 2050.

New cruise line Virgin Voyages unveiled in shadow of coronavirus (2/21/2020) Virgin Group’s Richard Branson introduces a new leisure travel line, as the outbreak threatens global tourism.

Health commission: Kids harmed by climate, exploitative marketing (2/19/2020) Environmental degradation and marketing pressures endanger world’s children, says report by WHO, UNICEF and The Lancet.

Despite Trump, North America has most cities on climate A list (2/18/2020) Calgary, Fayetteville and Santa Monica receive top CDP ratings for cutting emissions and increasing adaptation.

EU firms fall short on environmental and social impact data (2/17/2020) Alliance for Corporate Transparency: EU Non-Financial Reporting Directive does not produce enough ESG risk information.

Focus on Nevada, South Carolina after Sanders wins New Hampshire (2/12/2020) Sanders, Buttigieg and Klobuchar have momentum while Warren and Biden scramble after losing steam.

Sanders wins in New Hampshire, narrowly beating Buttigieg (2/12/2020) US Senator Bernie Sanders says victory in New Hampshire primary ‘is the beginning of end of Donald Trump’.

Voters head to polls in key New Hampshire presidential primary (2/11/2020) Democratic Party looks to recover after chaotic Iowa caucuses as voters cast ballots in US state of New Hampshire.

Sanders-Buttigieg rivalry escalates ahead of New Hampshire (2/10/2020) With Biden dipping in the polls, race between Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg heats up before US state’s primary.

EU power sector emissions drop as coal collapses across Europe (2/5/2020) The year 2019 saw record decline in CO2 emitted from electricity generation as renewable sources rose to a new high.

$18 trillion investor group calls out industry giants on climate (2/3/2020) New research reveals just one-fifth of cement, aluminium, steel and paper firms are in line with Paris climate goals.

Battle of the billionaires: Bloomberg & Trump duel in Super Bowl (2/1/2020) Incumbent US president and wealthy Democratic candidate spend over $10m each on rival commercials for the Big Game.

Trump plan for Palestine could deal blow to Israel’s economy (1/29/2020) US ‘peace to prosperity’ proposal could stoke conflict in Middle East, with annexation likely to have negative effects.

After death, Kobe Inc lives on in Los Angeles and far beyond (1/28/2020) Despite the NBA star’s untimely passing in a fiery chopper crash, Bryant’s business and investment legacy survives.

Will trillion-tree opportunity really revive the green planet? (1/23/2020) In California, climate restoration initiatives combine public-sector leadership with private capital and technology.

LA activist: ‘Real climate solutions won’t come out of Davos’ (1/23/2020) Swedish teen Greta Thunberg returned to the economic powwow in Switzerland after an advocacy tour across the pond.

Microsoft, Citi, Walmart make corporate climate A list (1/20/2020) CDP names 179 firms as business leaders in transparency and action as Japan surpasses US in number of top companies.

Hot Earth: NOAA says the last five years were planet’s warmest (1/15/2020) US atmospheric agency also says that ocean heat content is the highest in recorded history.

US-China trade tensions loom, even after phase one deal (1/15/2020) Despite interim pact to be inked this week, many fundamental issues between Washington and Beijing are still unresolved.

‘Watershed moment’: BlackRock pledges tough stance on climate (1/14/2020) After activists ramp up pressure, world’s biggest investment manager moves to reallocate capital away from fossil fuels.

Flight 752: Analysts say optics match Iran missile theory (1/9/2020) Airline tragedy that killed 176 people is testing international protocols for investigating air disasters.

Soleimani and the strategic impact of US sanctions on Iran (1/9/2020) Iran’s economy has been hammered by sanctions, but did they achieve the US’s stated objective?

Will youth climate activists see their pleas answered in 2020? (1/1/2020) Though national leaders are gripped by inertia, powerful actors are nudging the needle forward on climate action.

Curacao oil refinery takeover: Good for jobs, bad for climate? (12/27/2019) After sanctions row with Venezuelan firm, European company signs deal to run complex with economic, environmental woes.

‘Cleaner and cheaper’: Sunny Spain is banking on renewable energy (12/14/2019) With productive solar and wind power, Madrid looks to Brussels and beyond for investment in climate projects.

Will Europe’s Green Deal prove a giant leap for planet Earth? (12/13/2019) EU Commission announces ambitious blueprint for carbon neutrality by 2050, but Brussels faces challenges with moonshot.

Pokemon protest: Activists at COP25 slam Japan coal plants (12/12/2019) Climate advocates reject Japan’s embrace of dirty fossil fuel for energy security at home and money-making abroad.

‘A future we want’: Global mayors on front lines of climate fight (12/11/2019) As economic hubs, cities have a disproportionate role in causing, suffering from, and reversing global warming.

As Trump walks away from climate pact, America’s Pledge steps up (12/9/2019) With COP25 underway, broad coalition of US businesses, states and cities pushes for ‘prosperous, low carbon economy’.

Supply chains could unlock one gigatonne of emissions savings (12/9/2019) Large corporate buyers with trillions in procurement spending could use leverage to green their suppliers’ energy.

From Nestle to Nike: Will the private sector deliver on climate? (12/4/2019) Report says 285 companies are meeting ‘science-based targets’ by cutting 265 million tonnes of emissions.

#GivingTuesday: Millennials worldwide most likely to contribute (12/3/2019) ‘It’s grown into something we never expected, a generosity movement with global reach,’ says nonprofit chief.

US ranks #1 in the world for sky-high cost of vital medicines (11/22/2019) New study on global drug prices finds that Americans have by far the most expensive medication – from Lipitor to Xanax.

Paris climate goals are not being met, amid record global heating (11/20/2019) ‘Production gap’ is growing between emissions targets and countries’ planned consumption of fossil fuels.

Hungry for change: Ivy League climate activists urge divestment (11/19/2019) In global hunger strike, Columbia University students are fasting until Friday to force school to go carbon neutral.

US military spending: Many Americans now believe less is more (11/18/2019) Higher percentage show preference for non-military solutions like trade, investment, and diplomacy in a divided world.

Mumbai ranks as the world’s worst city for driving (11/15/2019) Calgary, meanwhile, takes top spot for vehicular infrastructure, traffic safety, driver behaviour and road costs.

‘Rear-view mirror’: Critics blast report by world energy watchdog (11/13/2019) Climate groups say new IEA outlook down plays the speed at which the world can and should switch to renewable energy.

Turkey sanctions at stake as Trump meets Erdogan in Washington (11/13/2019) The two leaders are meeting against a backdrop of strained diplomatic and military ties between Ankara and Washington.

Microsoft tops list of the most ‘just’ US corporations (11/12/2019) In rankings of the best publicly traded companies for ‘all stakeholders’, the Seattle-based tech firm leads the pack.

Paris targets: Oil majors must cut output 35 percent through 2040 (10/31/2019) Landmark report on carbon budgets and climate goals says Exxon and ConocoPhillips must trim the most, Shell the least.

Carbon Tracker: Vast majority of EU coal plants are unprofitable (10/23/2019) Think-tank says European utility firms lose billions as polluting fossil fuels are phased out in favour of renewables.

‘Mission Possible’: Can green growth solve the climate crisis? (9/27/2019) Powerful players are lining up to propel talk into action, hoping to decarbonise the economy faster and further.

Subnational ambition: Climate movements merge from Brazil to US (9/24/2019) With some national governments dragging their feet on emissions reductions, states and cities step in with new plans.

‘More fuel to the flames’: Climate advocates shun UN inaction (9/23/2019) With underwhelming commitments made at the Climate Action Summit, activists say that more needs to happen soon.

Greta Thunberg to UN Climate Summit: ‘How dare you?’ (9/23/2019) World leaders gather for one-day event to discuss measures to try to reverse global warming and cope with its effects.

Voices for the Future urges climate action at UN (9/23/2019) Immersive art installation on United Nations buildings in New York calls for drastic measures to stop global warming.

Global Climate Strike: Tens of thousands rally across the US (9/20/2019) At least 60,000 join teen activist Greta Thunberg’s campaign in New York City, other US cities before UN summits

Can ‘climate finance’ fund a transition to a low-carbon economy? (9/19/2019) UN Climate Action Summit hopes to catalyse the private sector to lead global shift away from fossil fuels to renewables.

Human rights groups take climate fight to big corporations (9/18/2019) Peoples’ Summit issues landmark declaration in New York, unleashing new resources to wage financial and legal campaign.

Climate restoration: Environmental coalition launches 2050 push (9/17/2019) New global campaign kick-started at the UN aims for scalable and financeable solutions to repair Earth’s ecosystems.

‘Frontier finance’ is scaling up to achieve United Nations goals (9/10/2019) New report on impact investment shows that big opportunities exist to make money and achieve global development targets.

Profits or Paris: Are oil giants betting against climate goals? (9/5/2019) Six big fossil-fuel companies have plans inconsistent with keeping global temperature increase below 2 degrees Celsius.

ILO: US workers put in shorter work week than world average (9/2/2019) Assessing the nations where people toil the most and least hours per week, as Labor Day is celebrated in North America.

‘Fridays for Future’: Greta Thunberg joins school strikers at UN (8/30/2019) Two days after arriving in US, Swedish teen climate activist joins weekly environmental rally next to United Nations.

BlackRock in Amazon: ‘World’s largest investor in deforestation’ (8/30/2019) Report by Friends of the Earth faults asset manager for investing in companies that contribute to Brazil’s fire risk.

French wine grapes show global warming acceleration (8/29/2019) Study finds seasonal harvests in Burgundy region show unprecedented heating trend compared with previous centuries.

Norway’s biggest asset investors demand action on Amazon fires (8/27/2019) The two largest funds based around Oslo are engaging with three United States companies to stop rainforest destruction.

US-EU commerce by the numbers: Planes and cars to snacks and beer (8/23/2019) A look at trade deficit figures and details on imports and exports between Washington and Brussels as the G7 kicks off.

Is Biarritz good for biz? EU-US trade hangs in balance at G7 (8/21/2019) As world leaders gather in France’s Basque Country, European negotiators are set to dig in their heels against Trump.

Making money war: Will Trump ‘manipulate’ the overvalued dollar? (8/9/2019) The White House is seeking the best way to stimulate the US economy and win the escalating trade fight with China.

San Diego, Portland, San Fran top US list for work-life balance (8/7/2019) New survey from mobile tech company looks at urban wellbeing, livability and workforce happiness.

Does the inverted yield curve mean a US recession is coming? (8/5/2019) As inversion reaches deepest level since early 2007, some economists are sounding alarm bells about an imminent crash.

BlackRock fossil-fuel investments erased $90bn in assets: Report (8/1/2019) Analysis by IEEFA says investors with world’s largest fund manager should question why their wealth remains at risk.

Bloated budget: Will ‘fiscal pickle’ stimulate US economy? (8/1/2019) United in deeming Phillips curve ‘dead’, both Trump’s adviser and AOC want to run big deficits to prolong the expansion.

Why is the Federal Reserve likely cutting interest rates? (7/30/2019) US central bank is widely expected to reduce its benchmark federal funds rate at Wednesday’s pivotal meeting.

We’re depleting natural wealth faster than Earth can replenish it (7/29/2019) Earth Overshoot Day falls on earliest-ever date in 2019, as humans use far more natural resources than is sustainable.

Feeling the heat? The language of climate is a-changin’ (7/26/2019) As global temperatures rise, activists are amping up the vocabulary used to describe the crisis in media and politics.

Rebelling against attention economy, Humane Tech movement expands (7/25/2019) A growing coalition of social groups is pushing back against tech companies that feed digital addiction and overload.

Facebook to pay $5bn fine, but will privacy prevail? (7/24/2019) FTC imposed new rules on the social media giant as part of settlement. However, pressure is on for more drastic reform.

Green New Deal promises jobs for AOC’s Bronx hometown (7/19/2019) Back where she came from, residents hope to gain from new state climate policy backed by their prominent Congresswoman.

What is Amazon’s role in the US immigration crackdown? (7/16/2019) Activists blast tech giant’s business offering cloud services to ICE, the US government agency conducting raids.

Is Amazon a true monopoly or does the Bezos behemoth not qualify? (7/15/2019) As workers strike and the company kicks off Amazon Prime Day sales, many question whether the firm is too dominant.

Overpopulation: Racist ‘dog whistle’ or fuel for climate crisis? (7/11/2019) UN highlights demographic issues on World Population Day, as young activists meet in Miami to slim carbon footprints.

AOC & Bernie Sanders: Congress should declare ‘climate emergency’ (7/9/2019) US Democrats from progressive faction announce new resolution on mass mobilisation to be introduced in House, Senate.

Universal basic income faces skeptics, despite ‘Yang Gang’ fans (7/5/2019) ‘Freedom dividend’ proposal from Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang has received mixed policy reviews.

Green New Deal 2.0: Activists revitalise UK climate change plan (7/4/2019) Proposal seeks massive economic transformation and is backed by MP Caroline Lucas, who designed original framework.

‘Socially responsible’ & impact investing: What’s the difference? (7/3/2019) Both strategies seek sustainability and profit, but one looks to ‘do no harm’ while the other aims to ‘do good’.

Risky business: The allure of liquefied natural gas (7/2/2019) Energy companies have big plans for more export terminals in North America, but a new report calls them into question.

Currency wars: Trump and Warren push hard for weaker dollar (7/1/2019) Populists say that devaluing the US dollar will bring back American jobs and boost domestic manufacturing.

Which 2020 Democrat has the strongest climate platform? (6/26/2019) At the first presidential debate in Miami, candidates are competing for voter attention on plans to stop global warming.

Climate emergency: Dems face calls for ‘WWII-scale’ mobilisation (6/26/2019) At first presidential primary debate in Miami, environmental groups are demanding action to address ‘escalating crisis’.

With no political deal, is Palestine economic peace just a dream? (6/25/2019) Trump administration is promoting $50bn plan to invest in infrastructure of West Bank, Gaza, and neighbouring states.

To avoid danger, many airlines skirting Iran-controlled airspace (6/21/2019) US regulator bans American carriers from parts of the increasingly tense area following the downing of a military drone.

Calling Trump’s bluff, Erdogan says US sanctions will not happen (6/20/2019) Washington is set to punish Ankara if it accepts Russian missiles. Only Trump can stop the economic pain – if he wants.

People, planet and profits: Impact investing exceeds $500bn (6/19/2019) Annual survey shows investors ‘increasingly see alignment between business objectives and transformative impact’.

Employee activists: Amazon ‘lagging behind’ on climate policy (6/18/2019) As 7,900 workers call for carbon plan, tech titan promises – but has yet to deliver – info on greenhouse-gas emissions.

Nearly 1 in 5 US children live in poverty, despite improvements (6/17/2019) Study shows positive trends in child wellbeing, but racial gaps remain.

How Trump’s tariff threat against Mexico might backfire (6/7/2019) US president has scapegoated migrants for middle-class woes. But a Mexican trade war could inflict more economic pain.

As US Green New Deal stalls, NY charges ahead with local versions (6/5/2019) Amidst federal inaction New York’s city council moves to close fossil-fuel power plants and replace gas with renewables.

Why is the Strait of Hormuz so strategically important? (7/11/2019) Explaining the economic and geopolitical significance of the key waterway out of the Gulf.

IMF denies pressuring Venezuela to release data, reports Reuters (5/30/2019) Rare data release from Maduro’s government, reportedly prompted by China, offers a new look at the country’s collapse.

Corporate havens spur breakdown of global tax system, says report (5/28/2019) Report by Tax Justice Network cites list of OECD countries as responsible for global inability to tax multinationals.

Congestion tax in New York could be Green New Deal litmus test (5/27/2019) If successful, the fee on driving into Manhattan might pave way for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s climate legislation.

NYC Green New Deal has Trump Tower in its sights (5/22/2019) Real-estate developers, including Trump, are targeted by strict building-emissions limits and energy-efficiency rules.

How strong is Trump’s hand in US-China trade war? (5/9/2019) High-level negotiations to continue as US raises tariffs on $200bn worth of Chinese goods from 10 to 25 percent.

What is the Green New Deal? (3/27/2019) Explaining the climate proposal Some Democrats want a Green New Deal that Republicans strongly oppose. Here are 5 key issues the deal seeks to tackle.

Can Boeing weather the 737 Max storm? (3/19/2019) Pressure on Boeing is intensifying as crisis engulfs the company and its most popular plane (with Patricia Sabga)

Young American climate protesters join ‘Fridays for Future’ (3/16/2019) Environmental rallies inspired by Greta Thunberg put pressure on US political leaders to embrace the Green New Deal.

Beware the kids: US youth to join strike for climate (3/14/2019) Students across the US plan to walk out of school in support of Green New Deal and broader international mobilisation.

Mexico’s Roma wins Oscar for best foreign language film (2/25/2019) Netflix film nabs awards for Best Director, Foreign Language Film and Cinematography.

How Netflix is shaking up Hollywood’s traditional Oscar model (2/24/2019) Video on-demand giant and other online streaming companies are helping redefine the motion picture industry.


Searching for Don Menachem: Quixotic Quest to Prove Sephardic Roots in Spain (5/30/2018) 28-step journey of self-discovery to Castile culminates in Spanish citizenship

Huffington Post

Market Failure: ‘Cost Disease’ Driving Prices for Big-Ticket Services Sky High (6/22/2017) But economists still argue over why U.S. is suffering from unique problem

Doha Under Siege: Saudi Axis Gunning for Qatari Capitulation (6/5/2017) Internal GCC rift laid bare over renegade support for Iran, ISIS, Brotherhood

Big Talk, Limited Action: No Cure For Pre-Existing Foreign Policy Conditions (5/5/2017) Trump’s exercise of U.S. leadership overseas remains naive, fraught with confusion

Syria Strike Was A Strategic Move Designed To Minimize Russiagate Scandal (4/7/2017) Amid national security crisis of confidence, realists win small victory

‘S-Town’ As Sessions Town: Revealing The Alabama World Of Native Son Jeff Sessions (4/5/2017) The chart-topping story from the makers of Serial is a window unto our Attorney General

Politics Driving You Crazy: Mental Health Conundrum Of ‘Post-Election Stress Disorder’ (3/16/2017) Caring too much about Trump’s misdeeds can heighten anxiety, despite creating a sense of purpose

‘Trump Doesn’t Care For Black People’: African-Americans Vexed By New President (2/17/2017) During Black History Month, few black New Yorkers think White House is reaching out

Popular ‘Resistance’ Emerges As The Tea Party Of The Left (2/10/2017) The massive grassroots outpouring has fed off fears that Trump poses an existential threat to cherished aspects of American society

‘We Can’t Just Have an Open Border’: South Brooklyn Residents Defend Trump ‘Muslim Ban’ (2/8/2017) Many outer-borough New Yorkers argue that Executive Order makes a lot of sense

Yemeni Shopkeepers Hit Back at Immigration Ban With ‘Bodega Strike’ (2/3/2017) In response to 90-day freeze on new arrivals, New York deli owners stage rally

Iranian Academics, Activists Fearing Uncertain Future Even In Liberal U.S. Cities (2/1/2017) As a result of Trump-imposed ban, nationals of 7 countries face onerous restrictions

President Trump’s inner circle largely has Northern, Democratic pedigree (1/26/2017) Most key figures are from above the Mason-Dixon, and not of pure GOP stock

Really not ‘fake’ news: Trump to become 45th president (1/19/2017) Propaganda, extreme partisanship, and verification continue to plague press

Why Al Jazeera America Failed, And Why We Need It More Than Ever (1/12/2017) America desperately needs something similar to pioneer this new era of uncertainty and misinformation

God, wipe men out’: Arabian Gulf women rebel against male guardianship (1/5/2017) With new urgency, Saudi and other GCC women call for widespread social change

#MAGA, Morality, and God: The non-cognitivist guide to surviving 2017 (12/30/2016) The New Year compels us to revisit basic philosophical assumptions about life and U.S. politics

‘Corn rows’ to keffiyehs: Mediterranean-American identity evolution, explained (12/23/2016) Ethnic ambiguity fosters exploration of Other cultures at the edges of the ‘white’ world

The Unbearable Whiteness Of Trumpistan Illuminates Half-truths Of ‘Racial Realism’ (12/15/2016) Balancing between demagoguery of white supremacy on right, failures of PC politics

Europe Welcomes Political Refugees From Trump’s America (12/01/2016) From Ireland and Italy to Spain and Germany, liberals seeking to flee U.S. can always return to their roots in EU nations

‘Parallel states’ confederation could offer best peace deal for Israel-Palestine (11/29/2016) Proposed framework of ‘two states, one homeland’ reflects interdependent reality [also appeared on “Utrikes Magasinet” in Swedish]

Why I took a break from media to sell NoTrump T-shirts (11/18/2016) Six-month political marketing venture documented voter sociology during election

Pivoting from ‘build that wall’ to bridges and trains (11/15/2016) $1 trillion in infrastructure construction could define the next American presidency

Trump’s America: Playing the post-election blame game (11/11/2016) Scarcely a moment has passed since Tuesday’s election that frustrated anti-Trump partisans haven’t blamed someone or something

‘Samaritan Cookbook’: A Culinary Odyssey from the Ancient Israelites to the Modern Mediterranean (11/04/2016) New project bridges cultural divide using food that unites Hebrew and Arabic worlds. [Author is an editor of the Samaritan Cookbook project by One Semitistan collective.]

Trump TV network: Media power play for ‘Alt-right’ won’t be money maker (11/02/2016) New incarnation of Trump brand could have big audience, but little ad revenue

Gaza History 101: From the Philistines to Palestinian Islamists (10/27/2016) An ancient crossroads for trade routes through Middle East, the area has seen repeated conquest and occupation

Rejected by America, Syrian family finds permanent home in Canada (10/25/2016) After months-long detention, U.S. immigration authorities refused asylum bid

Ghana asylum seekers stake out new lives in NYC (10/21/2016) Bronx migrants face fresh uncertainty finding refuge from persecution, detention

Journey of a Jew at Jazeera: Building bridges and courting controversy too (10/11/2016) Yom Kippur and Ashoura overlap this year as Hebrew, Islamic calendars coincide (Arabic version)

Stranded With Syrian Refugees: 40 Hours Till Toledo (8/22/2016) Reflections on my brief time with a Homs family stuck in Chicago for two nights after  4 years of displacement from Syria

Al Jazeera America

Clock keeps ticking on calendar reform, as another leap year passes by (2/25/2016) Feb. 29 approaches, with advocates pushing hard for long-shot changes

Sunil’s saga: Family double-victimized by depression, Internet witch hunt (2/12/2016) In wake of Boston bombing, Sunil Tripathi’s family faced outburst of false accusations after his disappearance

Despite being ‘Ebola-free,’ Liberia communities still fight its legacy (1/30/2016) Though immediate threat of outbreak is largely history, villages confront blame game

California politicians to don donor logos if ballot initiative succeeds (1/19/2016) Shock political campaign aims to make legislators’ corporate and union sponsors known to voting public

America’s new militia movement: Patriot groups explode under Obama (1/6/2016) Occupation of Oregon federal facility highlights growth in armed anti-government groups

Pamunkey federal recognition as 567th Indian tribe on hold, casino or not (12/23/2015) Native American group battles for long-awaited rights, amid dispute over Virginia gaming facility plans

Ahead of likely Fed interest rate hike, low-wage workers worry (12/16/2015) Slight increase in borrowing costs could stymie job growth and slow down the economic recovery (co-written with Patricia Sabga)

Youth unemployment major lag on human development, UN report says (12/14/2015) New study outlines changes to nature of work amid technological innovation, globalization

Belgian imam wages Flemish jihad against foreign fighters (12/5/2015) Influential Muslim convert navigates dangerous course between the mainstream and those who have taken up arms in Syria

Gun companies lock up billions in sales, boosted by calls for tougher laws (12/3/2015) Almost half of the guns made in America are produced by three companies: Smith & Wesson, Freedom Group and Sturm, Ruger [AJAM TV interview with Del Walters and radio interview with Gil Gross]

‘Alcatraz of the Rockies’ could welcome relocated Gitmo prisoners (11/17/2015) Colorado supermax Federal prison with Unabomber and other infamous ‘terrorists’ might take detainees

Decades after waging war overseas, veterans fight for a stable home (11/7/2015) Resource centers provide housing and group therapy for thousands of former members of the military

In age of cyberbanging, street gangs still call shots (10/24/2015) With gang membership numbers stabilizing, turf wars reportedly shift to online territory beyond the eyes of the law

‘Third Temple’ in Jerusalem: Mission impossible for messianic zealots (10/15/2015) Analysis: Israel is formally committed to an uneasy status quo, but hard-line nationalists aim to overturn it

Internet mushrooms toward 300 million domains, boosting language diversity (10/13/2015) What’s in a name online? With US spinning off Web governance, non-Latin alphabet addresses surge

Depths of heroin addiction: US sets record high for opioid abuse (9/26/2015) With overdose numbers continuing to rise, epidemic spreads at unprecedented rate

Russia expands military footprint abroad with new Syria base (9/18/2015) Explainer: Air force facility enlarged near Latakia, in one of nine foreign countries where Moscow positions troops

Walls of the world aim to keep unwanted foreigners out, hold prosperity in (9/5/2015) Amid Trump plans for Mexican border and Hungary’s barbed wire fence, global barriers increasingly divide people, nations

Katrina scars run deep in New Orleans, 10 years later (8/22/2015) Looking back at the unprecedented magnitude of the storm and its aftermath, in facts and figures

Cuban migration to US rises amid historic thaw in relations (8/14/2015) Fears grow that US will end ‘wet foot, dry foot’ policy granting legal status to Cubans who reach Florida shores

Greek airports, power plants and roads for sale amid debt crunch (7/15/2015) Athens is looking to unload state holdings in order to raise the necessary funds to navigate its economic crisis

Key points of the Iran nuclear deal (7/14/2015) The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action offers Iran sanctions relief in exchange for curbing its nuclear program

Chinese company and Taliban battle over Afghanistan’s underground riches (7/11/2015) Massive copper mine at Mes Aynak in Logar province could destroy antiquities site and displace villagers

Confederate bygones: Baltimore hoping to rename Robert E. Lee Park (6/27/2015) Municipal officials considering name change in light of Charleston events and recent riots over death of Freddie Gray

Highlights of the Supreme Court’s historic gay rights decision (6/26/2015) The majority and four separate dissenting opinions contain powerful language about the institution of marriage

‘Green Ramadan’ begins as pope calls for fast action on climate (6/18/2015) The focus for 2015 is on using serving materials other than styrofoam

Corruption allegations dog FIFA under Sepp Blatter (5/27/2015) Accusations of bribery and vote rigging began early in Blatter’s 17 years as the world soccer federation’s president [with Ehab Zahriyeh]

Funds denied: 1 in 5 Americans underbanked or ‘credit invisible’ (5/23/2015) Some 68 million American households struggle to access checking accounts and reliable financial services

Official ‘unemployment’ rate understates true U.S. joblessness (5/2/2015) Discouraged workers, stagnant wages and underemployment mean labor force has less participation than formally indicated

Turkey and Armenians still disputing ‘genocide,’ 100 years later (4/23/2015) An explanation of divergent views on events during World War I, when more than 1 million Armenians were killed

Sanctions on Iran: Long road ahead for lifting UN, EU, US embargoes (4/3/2015) Tehran wants immediate relief in nuclear deal, while Western powers prefer gradual easing of restrictions

GOP stands in way of Obama gambit for offshore corporate cash (3/12/2015) President proposes to tax companies’ foreign profits for half-trillion in revenue but faces tough congressional fight

Crack fails to make a comeback (2/28/2015) Freebase form of cocaine remains on the streets, but much less so than three decades ago

Strong dollar: The good, the bad and the ugly (2/4/2015) With economic sluggishness in Europe, a rallying greenback boosts US imports but limits exports

Lobbying tapered off in 2014 amid congressional gridlock (1/28/2015) K Street outlays topped $3 billion last year, with heavy spending by oil, insurance and tech industries

Cuba libre: US eases rules on rum, travel and cash transactions (1/16/2015) As Obama heralds new dawn, US travel and commercial rules are loosened for the island nation

After Citizens United, wealthy donors’ campaign spending skyrocketed (1/15/2015) Report finds outside spending, dark money and super PACs became crucial to successful political races in 2014

Oil bubble bursts: Are low prices a crude awakening for climate activists? (12/19/2014) Experts say that despite more money to invest in renewable energy sources, falling oil prices may take away incentives

How new US policy will change relations with Cuba (12/17/2014) Reset of diplomatic ties will make travel easier for Americans, widen Internet access for Cubans

Weak end at Bernie’s: Reform withers six years after massive Madoff fraud (12/6/2014) Revolving door persists on Wall Street as Congress fails to enact stronger investor protection for Main Street

Drug cartels: Decoding Mexico’s biggest criminal syndicates (11/20/2014) A look at the main players and how they influence the country’s turbulent politics

Dark money: Despite $4 billion spent, midterms hinge on hidden funding (10/31/2014) NC Senate race epitomizes shadowy political donations in most expensive federal election cycle ever

As college costs continue to rise, students wonder if higher ed pays off (10/8/2014) University tuition has risen much faster than the rate of inflation for other goods and services

‘I’m American too’: Undocumented students wait for Obama action (9/24/2014) With immigration overhaul delayed until after midterm elections, young people long for far-reaching reform

Who, what and where is ISIL: Explaining the ‘Islamic State’ (9/18/2014) The ragtag army occupying a huge swath of Syria and Iraq is Al-Qaeda 2.0

With US youth losing religion, evangelicals struggle to spread ‘good news’ (9/4/2014) More young Americans are turning away from organized faith as millennials question the mix with politics

Will Middle East governments ever face international justice? (8/29/2014) World powers continue to block efforts to prosecute alleged crimes against humanity committed by Syria, Israel and Egypt

‘Afromaidan’: Foreign media cite Ferguson as evidence of US ‘failed state’ (8/19/2014) Media outlets around the world use Missouri’s racial tension to further criticism of Washington’s policies

‘It was a productive night’: Police in Ferguson try new tactics (8/15/2014) Racial dynamics appear to change with appointment of black cop to top post in turbulent St. Louis suburb security op

Crowd control: Riot police techniques from Ferguson to France (8/14/2014) Police use a range of nonlethal weapons to maintain social order, quell civil disturbances and stop political violence

$6B in damage: Gaza economy reels from four weeks of war (8/5/2014) Territory struggled with blockade even before Protective Edge; fixing it requires broader Israeli-Palestinian agreement

Gaza’s underground: A vast tunnel network that empowers Hamas (7/23/2014) An extensive system of concrete-lined passageways supports Gaza’s civilian economy and military activity [FOX NEWS Radio interview with Alan Colmes]

Gaza civilians pay price for combat between Israel, Hamas (7/12/2014) Escalation in violence between Israeli military and Palestinian fighters exacerbates humanitarian crisis in Gaza

Prelude to war: Political crackdown on Hamas in the West Bank (7/9/2014) In aftermath of hitchhikers’ abduction, Israel laid groundwork for escalation with Gaza by rounding up group’s members

Womb veils to femidoms: History of American birth control [TIMELINE] (7/2/2014) The modern evolution of women’s contraception in the US started with reproductive-rights pioneer Margaret Sanger

To free or not to free: Giving juvenile murderers a second chance (6/20/2014) States debate retroactive application of ruling against mandatory life sentences without parole for minors

DNA exoneration: Redeeming the wrongfully convicted (5/8/2014) Across U.S., 316 jailed criminals have successfully proved their innocence and found justice through forensic science.

Alibaba eyes opening bell to access treasures of American investors (5/7/2014) Online retail pioneer valued around $100 billion files with SEC for US stock market launch.

Flagship economic indicator: What does GDP reveal about U.S.? (4/30/2014) Economists say standard measure of growth paints part of the picture, ignoring social and environmental goods.

Deconstructing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (4/25/2014) As Obama aims to seal the deal on the cornerstone of his Asia policy, domestic and foreign opposition remains firm.

Keeping up with the Joneses: People-to-people travel to Cuba (4/21/2014) Dozens of companies offer mainstream Americans the chance to interact with citizens of the communist-ruled island.

In Cuba, U.S. embargo elicits a shrug (3/24/2014) Havana’s communist leaders make halting changes, but no one expects an end to the economic blockade.

State of the Union gallery guests signal key Obama issues (1/26/2014) The guests invited by the White House to join the First Lady during the speech often embody the President’s key themes [produced with Ehab Zahriyeh, Hashem Said, and Alex Newman]

US explores tobacco’s endgame, as report lists new known harms (1/17/2014) Surgeon general marks 50th anniversary of landmark public-health study with new warning over smoking epidemic [reported by Marisa Taylor]

ISIL: An Al-Qaeda challenge in Syria and Iraq (1/8/2014) Why the extremist movement has re-emerged in both countries, and how it’s antagonizing local Sunnis

Sandy 101: Explaining the impact (10/26/13) Looking back one year later at the superstorm’s unprecedented toll on the northeastern US.

Deal or no deal, US debt problem lingers (10/15/13) Even if America puts a band-aid on the budget this week, bigger battles loom large for policymakers.

Shutdown showdown: Endgame Scenarios (10/4/13) Five ways Washington could deal with political gridlock, fiscal chaos and the debt ceiling.

Shutdown showdown: A Glossary (9/30/13) Explaining the confusing fiscal terminology at the heart of America’s political quagmire.

Al Jazeera English

Q&A: Deconstructing the chaos in Bangladesh (5/31/13) Recent events in turbulent South Asian nation have called into question the essence of political and religious identity.

Timeline: Israeli attacks on Syrian targets (5/5/13) Recent strikes allegedly hit Iranian missiles bound for Hezbollah, amid growing fears of chemical weapons transfers.

Revealing N Korea’s gulag and nuclear sites (1/29/13) Google’s newly updated maps show unprecedented detail in aerial imagery of labour camps and missile launch pad.

Requiem for a Red State Road Trip (10/16/12) Reflections on two-week reporting odyssey through under-covered swath of US, a month before presidential election.

Immigrants thrive in US country music capital (10/15/12) Foreign-born residents in Nashville, Tennessee, lean to the Democrats in a state often dominated by Republicans.

Southerners on race and the White House (10/13/12) Generational gap afflicts black voters in Memphis, city of Civil Rights turmoil, King’s assassination and blues music.

Click for full coverage of the two-week trip.

In America it’s still ‘the economy, stupid’ (10/13/12) Arkansas voters say jobs, taxes and investment drive their political decisions and the whole country’s economic future.
Arkansas voters ‘praying for’ US president (10/10/12) After Bible study and prayer session, evangelical Christians in Siloam Springs reveal heavy mix of God and politics.
Energy interests square off over US heartland (10/10/12) With plentiful natural gas and cheap electric rates during election year, Oklahoma renewables struggle for traction.
US politics ‘off the reservation’ in Oklahoma (10/07/12) Signs of the 2012 presidential race are rare along interstates dotted with pit stops, Indian casinos and tribal lands.
‘I’m Muslim: Ask me a question’ (10/06/12) Interfaith groups fight intolerance off the national political radar in “blue dot within the sea of red Kansas”.
What’s the matter with undecided Kansans? (10/04/12) A vocal minority in overwhelmingly Republican state remain undecided after first presidential debate.
Who is Nakoula Basseley Nakoula? (09/15/12) Enigmatic Egyptian-American fraudster fingered as main producer behind anti-Islam video is currently on probation.
Israeli ignites protests with self-immolation (07/16/12) Moshe Silman sets himself alight in Tel Aviv, reviving social justice rallies on anniversary of movement’s founding.
Map: US bases encircle Iran (05/01/12) Dozens of US and allied forces’ military installations dot the region.
Iran and Israel: Comparing military machines(04/24/12) Assessing statistics for the two regional rivals.

Click for links to the whole set of Iran Interactives.

North Korea celebrates ‘Juche 101’ (04/10/12) Three East Asia experts explain why Pyongyang is going all-out to honour the centenary of the “eternal president”.
Bahrain: A revolt pushed underground (12/28/11) Though it rode the wave of popular uprisings, the momentum of Bahrain’s pro-democracy protests faced a heavy-handed end.
Kidnapping stokes fears in Iraqi Kurdistan (12/16/11) Despite relative safety and prosperity of semi-autonomous northern region, some ethnic minorities want the US to remain.
Occupy Wall Street: All day, all week (10/07/11) Activist and author Kalle Lasn shares the revolutionary fervour behind a growing US anti-corporate protest movement.
Israel’s housing protesters: Bibi go home (07/31/11) As tent cities pop up across country, 150,000 marchers show solidarity and PM promises panel to fix the problem.
Straddling Kashmir’s infamous Line of Control (07/07/11) Al Jazeera asks author Luv Puri why the long-running Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan remains so intractable.
Q&A: E-waste goes to post-recycling afterlife (06/17/11) Modern information-age society produces a massive amount of computer, mobile phone and battery waste every year.
The US and Bahrain: Sending Ludo home (06/10/11) While US denies “recalling” diplomat from Bahrain, larger issue looms about support for American interests over values.
Demanding equal rights in Bahrain (03/07/11) Many Shia citizens of Gulf island demand ouster of PM, and less power for the ruling Khalifa family.
Taking back Bahrain’s ‘Tahrir’ (02/20/11) Bahrainis rejoice after army and police retreat from Pearl roundabout just days after violent clashes there.
Q&A: Tensions on Korean Peninsula (12/23/10) Al Jazeera speaks with a North Korea expert who expresses guarded optimism about de-escalation of the current dispute.
Five top world powers visit India (12/20/10) Russian president’s visit to rising South Asian power is on heels of trips by US, UK, French and Chinese heads of state.
Copycat WikiLeaks sites make waves (12/17/10) Spin-off whistleblower sites emerge in weeks after WikiLeaks publishes leaked US diplomatic cables.
Primer: Europe’s dire debt crisis (12/16/10) A look at how the European debt contagion spread from southern Europe and by 2010 had engulfed much of the continent.
Huffington Post

Resilient Haitians Battle Chaos and Despair in Quest for Normalcy (07/28/10) In May, four months after Haiti was struck by a massive earthquake, we searched for signs that life in Port-au-Prince had returned to normal. What we found was that the rebuilding process was in many ways a building process for so much of the country’s infrastructure.

(Marc Steiner show radio appearance with Marie Saint Cyr about the situation in Haiti on 05/18/10).

Mass Protests Begin in Haiti (05/12/10) In the Haitian capital’s first major opposition rally since the devastating January 12th earthquake, protesters demanded Monday that President Rene Preval step down. Angry demonstrators marched several miles from Cite Soleil, the capital’s poorest area, to the destroyed Presidential Palace, calling for the reinstatement of exiled leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Haitians Surrender to Destiny But Battle for Better Tomorrow (05/11/10) Upon arrival in Haiti, I was struck by the nonchalance of the first baggage handlers, street vendors, and cops that I saw. Despite a harrowing natural disaster that befell the dirt-poor Caribbean country just four months ago, the humdrum of daily life here goes…


In Middle East, leaders on religious left offer reconciliation (03/25/10) Religious politicians are usually considered to be on the right of the ideological spectrum. However, we look at several who advocate pacifism and pluralism yet are grounded in traditional spirituality.

Q&A: Arab world experiences rapid population explosion (03/23/10) Compared to other regions, the Arab world has been experiencing one of the fastest population growth rates — over 2% per year — which has led to more than its doubling within the last 30 years. Worldfocus discusses Middle Eastern demographics with Patrick Gerland, a demographer at the United Nations Population Division.

Q&A: India launches countrywide slum mapping campaign (02/25/10) The government of India announced plans earlier this week to do comprehensive mapping of slums in the entire country — to further the ambitious goal of making India slum-free within five years. Worldfocus spoke with Pratima Joshi of Shelter Associates for more on slum mapping.

Marijuana laws loosen gradually around the globe (02/19/10) During a recent upswing in drug violence in Mexican border towns, many critics of the drug war called for a change in U.S. policy toward marijuana use. Meanwhile, New Jersey just became the 14th U.S. state to allow marijuana for medical use. View our maps to compare current U.S. marijuana policy to laws in Europe and the rest of the world. (co-reported by Geneva Sands-Sadowitz)

Drone war forces resurgent al-Qaeda to rely on franchises (02/16/10) The drone war in northwest Pakistan has brought attention to the attenuated al-Qaeda core that moved from Afghanistan in late 2001. But two events in December — a failed Christmas Day bombing and an attack on CIA operatives in Afghanistan — have led analysts to re-assess al-Qaeda’s perceived decline. Worldfocus takes a look at the organization’s evolution. (Blog)

Drones continue to eliminate major foes in NW Pakistan (02/12/10) This week, Pakistani Taliban finally confirmed what the Pakistani army had claimed many days ago — that Hakimullah Mehsud was killed last month by U.S. drones. While there are conflicting reports about which strike dealt Mehsud the mortal blow, the Pakistani Taliban are leaderless for the second time in six months. Read how commentators are assessing the drone war. (Blog)

China surges past competitors in clean energy technology (02/11/10) China is rapidly becoming the leading manufacturer of clean energy. The country has become the largest producer of wind turbines and solar panels and also provides almost 97 percent of the world’s supply of rare-earth materials. The world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitter could also make the rest of the world reliant on its alternative energy products. (co-reported by Geneva Sands-Sadowitz)

N. Korean paid informants risk lives but send dubious news (02/04/10) In North Korea, radio signals are jammed, internet connections blocked and cell phones monitored. Outside news organizations pay underground stringers to smuggle news out. Read how U.S. newspapers treat this info, and see our list of North Korean news websites. (co-reported by Geneva Sands-Sadowitz)

Q&A: Morocco shuts down magazine that criticized government (02/02/10) Aida Alami is a Moroccan freelance journalist who wrote for Le Journal Hebdomadaire until the magazine was shut down by the government last week. Worldfocus interviewed her about why the Moroccan government closed one of the country’s most independent news outlets.

Q&A: Born in Africa, crisis-mapping site comes of age in Haiti (01/29/10) Ushahidi, which is Swahili for “testimony,” is an innovative computer platform that crowd-sources crisis information. Worldfocus spoke with Ushahidi about their efforts in Haiti to map out reports from the ground and help disaster relief organizations to provide aid to those in need.

‘Drone porn’ develops a cult following on the internet (01/28/10) As unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have become increasingly central to America’s wars, “drone porn” has taken the internet by storm with captivating aerial images of death and destruction. The Defense Department actually posts its drone attack footage on YouTube via public relations firm DVidsHub. Some of the videos have caught the attention of millions. (Video blog)

China commits massive funds to future high-speed rail (01/19/10) High-speed train travel is set to take over in China. New lines linking major cities are providing faster and faster routes. China has committed almost $300 billion over the next decade to build the planet’s most expansive high-speed network. The world’s fastest train covers the 664-mile Guangzhou-Wuhan trip in just three hours — an average speed of 217 mph. (Co-reported by Geneva Sands-Sadowitz and James Matthews).

Q&A: In turbulent Israel-Palestine, Samaritans strive to do good (01/19/10) The Samaritan community, numbering around 740 people, is split between Holon, Israel, and Kiryat Luza, near Nablus in the West Bank. Neither Muslim nor Jewish, they have been in the Holy Land for over three millennia. Worldfocus spoke with Benyamin Tsedaka, editor of the Samaritan newspaper and chairman of the Samaritan Medal project.

U.S. intensifies drone attacks on Pakistan’s tribal region (01/12/2010) In 2009, the U.S. launched at least 50 missile strikes against al-Qaeda and Taliban operatives in northwest Pakistan. While drone attacks are more frequent than ever before, there is wide disagreement about civilian deaths. View our interactive map of Pakistan drone attack locations since 2004.

China’s Great Firewall falls briefly, allowing YouTube & porn (01/05/10) In an effort to curb exposure to unsavory web material, China has massively strengthened its Great Firewall. Internet censorship in China targets perceived threats to the government: political sites, social networks and more. But during brief periods in the past few days, internet users have been able to access forbidden sites — even without going through a proxy.

Pashtunistan faces huge escalation of U.S. anti-terror war (12/31/09) Worldfocus multimedia producer Ben Piven writes about the U.S. war in Pashtunistan, a misunderstood place not found on any world map. The knee-jerk American reaction after September 11th was to strike at the Taliban-ruled nation that harbored a huge al-Qaeda contingent: Afghanistan. But the U.S. has widened its campaign to the region of Pashtunistan.

Human rights group condemns UN eastern Congo mission (12/15/09) A new 183-page report by Human Rights Watch faults the U.N.’s largest and most expensive peacekeeping operation for supporting the Congolese Army’s murderous tactics. The report calls for the embattled U.N. mission — whose mandate is set to expire in two weeks — to cease backing the Congolese military, which is accused of serious human rights violations.

Teddy bear, bumble bee indoctrinate youth on Hamas TV (12/11/09) Since 2007, a propaganda show called Tomorrow’s Pioneers has taught young Palestinians about the alleged sins of Israel and the West. This week, a Washington D.C.-based NGO released a dispatch on this children’s TV program produced by Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Watch videos with the show’s 4 costumed co-hosts, including Farfour, a Mickey Mouse look-alike…

Q&A: Jerusalem serves as disputed 2009 Arab ‘culture capital’ (12/04/09) For 2009, UNESCO and the Arab League designated Jerusalem as the year’s Arab culture capital. But Israeli authorities forbade events associated with the program, prompting a series of secret indoor gatherings. Worldfocus interviewed the Dutch organizer of Al Quds Underground.

Q&A: Calling the world’s attention to the caste issue in India (12/01/09) For more on the Indian Prime Minister’s visit to Washington D.C. last week, Worldfocus spoke with Ramaiah Avatthi, a professor at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai. Currently a Fulbright Scholar at Columbia University, Ramaiah contends that Manmohan Singh has ignored the caste issue during his stewardship of India.

Q&A: One year later, taking Mumbai’s pulse inside taxis (11/25/09) India’s largest city is commemorating the one-year anniversary of vicious terrorist attacks that killed more than 170 people. Journalist Vandana Sood uses Mumbai taxicabs to report on how people from a wide cross-section of Indian society view the aftermath of the attacks.

Q&A: Jerusalem’s undying ethnic strife deepens urban divide (11/20/09) One of the world’s holiest cities is also one of the most divided. For more on Jerusalem’s unique situation, Worldfocus spoke with Hussein Ibish, a senior fellow at the American Task Force for Palestine, a non-profit dedicated to a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Articles from Inside the Hermit Kingdom, a 6-part Worldfocus series on the people and culture of North Korea:
North Korean economy sandwiched by the dragon and tiger (11/20/09) “Why does South Korea produce Samsung, LG, and Hyundai?” I asked Jong, our 25-year-old North Korean tour guide. She said that North Korea will manufacture sophisticated goods once the essentials — electrification and rice production — are covered. But the blank look on her face suggested that she better not discuss the issue.

Kim Jong-il’s North Korea welcomes legal U.S. tourists (11/13/09) Air Koryo stewardesses with delicately coiffed hair and impeccable red suits directed us to our seats in the stuffy Tupolev aircraft. Flimsy seat backs folded completely forward onto the seat cushions. Pyongyang-bound tourists, businessmen, and North Koreans fanned themselves ferociously, as the temperature hit 80 degrees. (w/ video)

Sweet dreams of Beyonce in N. Korean people’s paradise (11/11/09) On my second day in North Korea, our guide asked if it was true that Michael Jackson had died. We pictured her doing the moonwalk as Michael blared from her in-house PA that never sleeps. After we confirmed the star’s death, she asked whether Michael Jordan had also passed away. She was relieved to hear that America’s greatest basketball player was doing fine. (w/ slideshow)
Straddling the two Koreas: DMZ diplomacy with Major Im (11/03/09) Since 1953, it has been the world’s most militarized border. Bill Clinton has called it the scariest place on earth. Undoubtedly, my most compelling moment in North Korea was at the DMZ — Demilitarized Zone. Many Americans visit the south side of the 2.5-mile wide buffer zone that runs across the 38th parallel, dividing the Communist north from the democratic south. But our group was given a rare glimpse of the north side.

Communist North Korea clings to ‘Juche’ ideology (10/30/09) North Korea is a Cold War relic, but its communist roots alone do not explain the widespread adoption of the ideology knows as Juche — essentially a hybrid of East Asian Confucianism and East European Stalinism. Despite the fact that state literature decrees “man is the master of all things,” Juche (”self-reliance” in Korean) is relentlessly collectivist. (w/ slideshow)

100,000 North Koreans dazzle at mass games spectacle (10/06/09) Worldfocus discussed the meaning of the Arirang Games with two North Korea experts: Charles Armstrong, a history professor and director of Columbia University’s Center for Korean Studies and Leon Sigal, director of the Social Science Research Council’s Northeast Asia Cooperative Security Project. (w/ video)

Q&A: Rights group says terminally ill suffer needlessly in India (10/30/09) This week Human Rights Watch released Unbearable Pain, an extensive report on palliative care in India. The organization believes that denying sick people pain relief violates a basic health care right, and that the Indian government should require hospitals to provide terminally ill patients with morphine.

Hindus celebrate Diwali holiday in India and beyond (10/19/09) round the world, from India and Mauritius to the United Kingdom and Guyana, Hindus gathered with friends and family to celebrate the festival of lights: Diwali. Also known as Dipawali, which means “row of lamps,” the holiday commemorates the victory of good over evil within individuals. (w/slideshow & video, co-reported with Parul Malik)

Over 12 million people worldwide have no citizenship (10/16/09) Around the world, an estimated 12 million individuals lack nationality or citizenship in any nation. This means they have no legal right to a passport, employment, or housing. (with amMap)

Mapping out refugees and asylum seekers worldwide (10/14/09) There are estimates of 16 million total refugees and asylum seekers living throughout the world. Refugees fall under the responsibility of different global agencies. There are 10.5 million refugees under the auspices of UNHCR, while UNRWA has responsibility for the estimated 4.7 million Palestinian refugees…

Q&A: Dying during childbirth in India (10/13/09) Last week, Human Rights Watch released an extensive report detailing the maternal mortality problem in India – whose rate is 16 times Russia’s and 10 times China’s. Worldfocus spoke with Aruna Kashyap, the lead researcher of the in-depth study, “No Tally of the Anguish.”

Violence in Guinea shocks international community (10/08/09) A number of Western governments have stepped up their condemnations of violence and brutality in Guinea. An estimated 157 died last week as government troops shot demonstrators voicing their disapproval of Captain Moussa Dadis Camara.

Guinea security forces crack down, kill more than 100 (09/29/09) Almost one year after a bloodless coup in December 2008 — during which Captain Moussa Dadis Camara took power several hours after the death of Guinea’s 24-year leader — violence has begun to rock the West African nation’s capital city of Conakry.

Day Two at the U.N. (09/23/09) Heralding a “new chapter of international cooperation,” U.S. President Barack Obama delivered his maiden speech to the U.N. General Assembly today. Obama remains very popular around the world, although he has not yet elicited any major concessions in global geopolitical conflicts.

Reporting from the U.N. (09/22/09) Here at the U.N. on the first day of the 64th session of the General Assembly, over 100 heads of state have gathered to discuss climate change in the run-up to December’s Copenhagen conference. U.S. President Barack Obama headlined the plenary session, which featured eight world leaders.
Chinese diplomats promote ‘harmonious world’ policy (09/17/09) “Thirty years ago, you couldn’t find anything in American supermarkets made in China. Now, when an American friend shops for a gift, he can’t find one not made in China.”

Rome Metro’s Line C runs into ruins (09/17/09) Rome is currently building its third metro line, which will pass through the gaping hole in the middle of the city not covered by the A and B lines. (w/ map)

Q&A: A Kuwaiti Bidoon suffers from statelessness (09/03/09) Bidoon literally means “without” in Arabic and refers to a group of Bedouin, formerly nomadic Arabs, who are perceived as socially and culturally inferior to the dominant “merchant” tribes of the Gulf States.

Kurdish sanctuary ages in Brooklyn (09/02/09) Flowing headdresses and silver amulets from Kurdistan fill the dusty glass cases of the exhibition room. Over 2,000 erudite books fill the shelves. Faded photographs of Kurdish peasants cover the walls. (on InsideThirteen)

Head-to-toe Islamic veil rare in France (09/01/09) Six years ago, I was looking for an apartment in the French capital. Searching for the 5-A buzzer, an American friend and I came across an old French man who thought we were trespassing…

Q&A: the challenges of entering and exiting Gaza (08/10/09) Nizar al-Wazir came to the United States on a Fulbright grant from Gaza in 2007. He currently works in Washington D.C. at Chemonics, a development consulting firm. He joined Worldfocus to discuss the hardship of coming and going from the Gaza Strip.

Ambitious Dane takes the reins at NATO (08/05/09) His youthful chuckle echoed throughout the reception chamber. The premier was delighted that I used the Danish term for “tax daddy” in a question about windmill subsidies…

Israel not a ‘sucker’ for Obama foreign policy (07/30/09) Beyond all else, the one thing that all visitors to the Holy Land recognize immediately is that queues don’t work properly. Israelis hate waiting in line. In the queue for a spot on President Barack Obama’s world tour…

China promises to execute fewer criminals (07/29/09) In an announcement that is well-timed with the conclusion of bilateral talks between the U.S. and China, Beijing declared that it would drastically cut the number of executions. But China accounted for the vast majority of worldwide executions in 2008…

Warming Greenland moves towards Independence (07/28/09) I read two weeks ago how midsummer’s day was the occasion for big celebrations in Greenland’s capital of Nuuk, a small town snuggled between fjords on the southwestern coast. Clad in sealskin boots and waving red and white Greenlandic flags…

Curvaceous cartoon heroine banned in India for racy exploits (07/27/09) Indian netizens are mourning the passing of an Internet comic heroine, weeks after the country’s Ministry of Telecommunications banned this contemporary take on Kama Sutra for violating public decency. (SavitaBhabhi.com and HuffingtonPost link)

Indian Nationalism Begins to Challenge Caste Identity (04/03/09) The peppery aroma of snack carts permeated the humid air. Workmen gathered under a corrugated tin overhang to sip on mango lassis and sweet lime juice. (HuffingtonPost link)

NY Daily News


Bronx-based service cleans out hoarders’ cluttered homes (05/03/09) Catharine harvests rainwater for bathing and uses a litter box as her toilet. She has had no plumbing for seven years. The Georgetown University alumna sleeps on massive rubbish piles next to her 10 cats. (Cover article of Sunday Metro section)


You Can Take the Slum Out of Slumdog But Not Out of Mumbai (02/26/09) Aside from the usual criticisms about “Slumdog Millionaire” — regarding its essential truthfulness, or whether the title demeans its subjects–some Mumbai-centric commentators have accused the film of unfair characterization of the Indian slum in general, and Dharavi in particular.

(SAJAforum radio appearances #2 and #3 in the series produced after the 11/26/08 Mumbai terror attacks).

Reporting China

Pinkslips Instead of Hongbao (02/10/09) Chinese New Year celebrations ended inauspiciously on Monday, as one of Beijing’s most critically acclaimed hotels built in the pre-Olympic construction boom sizzled. Indeed, this year may be off to a rough start – and not just for the Mandarin Oriental.

Red Ink

Claudio’s Barber Shop (11/11/08) Claudio Caponigro is one of the last relics of a bygone era. Yet, almost 60 years of snipping the locks of East Harlem residents might come to an end. Maybe tomorrow, maybe next week, maybe next year.


Jericho Youth

Ultra Healthy Hebrews (06/25/07) Ruffling his distinctive beard and directing a regal, pacific gaze towards the growing crowd of Shavuot revelers, Sar Elyashuv…

African Diaspora in the Holy Land (06/04/07) In a spacious, mellow room in Jerusalem’s Old City, a crew of Arabic-speaking youngsters chats about football, oud, and Allah.

Baltimore Sun

Falls Road Relics Link Past, Present (08/13/02) The inn is a few hundred yards north of the spot where the last 25-cent tollgate on the Falls Road Turnpike stood, giving the inn an important…

Game Masters Unite (08/03/02) Despite her humble attitude, Rebecca Hebner won four tournaments at last year’s World Boardgaming Championships.

Making a Wooly Debut (07/13/02) Alpacas: the smaller cousins of llamas make their first appearance at the Baltimore County 4-H Fair…


God & Bible (05/10/06) I’m not certain what to think about an Enlightenment type of rationalism, which was always prevalent in American history.

Happy 3rd Anniversary, Mr. President (03/20/05) Multicolored banners waved atop the impassioned crowd, each festooned with clever slogans…The protestors were booming adamantly.

Woodland Cemetery

34th Street

Famous Graves and Legends (04/03/03) When West Philadelphia was a suburban paradise in the 18th century, affluent city dwellers built their country estates on the left bank.


Cultural Geography of Burning Man (09/16/06) The event evokes different reactions to its psychedelic, ephemeral, and brutal qualities

Chariotthe man

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