Former president Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva is the front-runner in Brazil’s coming presidential election, scheduled for Oct. 7. But instead of being on the campaign trail, he is in jail, charged with corruption-related crimes. He’s expected to stay in prison while all his legal appeals are considered, which could take months — which means he may still be in jail when Brazilians vote.
Usually, a candidate behind bars means the game is over, both legally and politically. Here are three possible ways for da Silva to stay in contention this fall.
1) The former president doubles down on his candidacy.… Seguir leyendo »
The recent displacement of civilians and rebel fighters from the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta signals an important victory for the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. In the face of these successes, it is worth remembering that the imminent downfall of Assad’s regime was proclaimed several times since the onset of violence in Syria in late 2011. Each time, Assad defied such predictions. How has his government, which several times looked so close to being toppled, weakened its rivals and ensured its continuity?
In a new article, we argue that a crucial component of the Assad regime’s wartime success has been its strategic use of aerial bombardment.… Seguir leyendo »
Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, faces a tough two days of meetings when he arrives today in Mar-a-Lago to meet President Donald Trump. Abe has to persuade Trump not to neglect Japan’s interests in the planned summit meeting with Kim Jong-un of North Korea; some officials in Tokyo fear that the US might strike an agreement that would involve Kim’s giving up his long-range missiles while keeping those that can reach Japan. Abe also wants to obtain for Japan an exemption from Trump’s new steel and aluminum tariffs—but without being drawn into a bilateral trade deal to address what Trump perceives as Japan’s unjustified trade surplus with the US.… Seguir leyendo »