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Section: The Conversation (USA)

      Why increasing shale gas production won’t reduce greenhouse gas emissions
      Mar08

      Why increasing shale gas production won’t reduce greenhouse gas emissions

      Fracking wellpad in Tioga County, Pennsylvania, within state forest lands (2012). SkyTruth Galleries/Flickr, CC BY-NCThis article was co-written with Vicki Duscha of Fraunhofer ISI and Jan Kersting of TWS Partners. The boom in hydraulic fracturing (fracking) has led to an increase in the production of natural gas in the United States by about...

      Why Russia is back in Afghanistan
      Nov15

      Why Russia is back in Afghanistan

      Three decades after a humiliating military defeat in Afghanistan, Russia has returned to the scene. This adds Afghanistan to a long list of hotspots – from Syria and Libya to Venezuela and Ukraine – where Moscow’s low-cost, high-impact foreign policy is challenging the West. In Afghanistan, the Kremlin is covertly supporting the Taliban and...

      Explainer: how the latest earphones translate languages
      Nov14

      Explainer: how the latest earphones translate languages

      ShutterstockIn the Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy, Douglas Adams’s seminal 1978 BBC broadcast (then book, feature film and now cultural icon), one of the many technology predictions was the Babel Fish. This tiny yellow life-form, inserted into the human ear and fed by brain energy, was able to translate to and from any language. Web...

      Alexander Dugin, Eurasianism, and the American election
      Nov13

      Alexander Dugin, Eurasianism, and the American election

      Alexander Dugin: the philosopher or prophet who has been touted as ‘Putin s brain’. Electoral affinities Until the last fortnight, an unhappy sequence of natural disasters and North Korean sabre-rattling have kept the investigations concerning Russian interference in last year’s American election out of the international...

      What the charges against Manafort, Gates and Papadopoulos could mean for Trump
      Oct31

      What the charges against Manafort, Gates and Papadopoulos could mean for Trump

      Five months into Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of cooperation between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia during the 2016 election, Americans are seeing the first legal maneuvers in the case. Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates surrendered to U.S. District Court on...

      The worrying future for grandparents when migration robs a country of its children
      Oct09

      The worrying future for grandparents when migration robs a country of its children

      huseyin ozdemir1/ShutterstockOne of the central arguments in support of pro-immigration policies in Europe is that developed nations in the West need young workers to help pay for the pensions and healthcare of ageing populations. We can argue over the merits of that into the night, but what is often forgotten is the fate of the older people in...

      Why is the US trying to shut down Russian security company Kaspersky Lab?
      Oct08

      Why is the US trying to shut down Russian security company Kaspersky Lab?

      Eugene Kaspersky Wikimedia, CC BY-SAThe Wall Street Journal has published allegations that the Russian government stole highly sensitive information from a contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA) with the aid of antivirus software from the Russian company Kaspersky Lab. The source of this allegation was “people familiar with the matter”....

      How China’s first ‘silk road’ slowly came to life – on the water
      Oct02

      How China’s first ‘silk road’ slowly came to life – on the water

      Curioso/ShutterstockFew images are more enduring in the historical imagination than the train of two-humped Bactrian camels plodding across desert sands from west to east, or vice-versa, across the vast open spaces of Eurasia. Now that China is edging towards a modern incarnation of the “silk road” it is worth remembering how this emblem of the...

      What would it take to trigger war between Russia and NATO? Just a spark
      Sep29

      What would it take to trigger war between Russia and NATO? Just a spark

      This September in Europe was a tense month of military posturing and preparations. Sweden recently began a three-week war game, its largest since the Cold War. Even as it did so, across the Baltic Sea, Russian and Belarusian forces concluded the Zapad military exercises – which NATO officials called “serious preparations for a big war”. Major war...

      If Russia gets its war games wrong, Europe could be in big trouble
      Sep21

      If Russia gets its war games wrong, Europe could be in big trouble

      Tensions are running high in a region with a history of paranoia and mistrust. The rhetoric being used raises the concern of a military escalation. And now there are massive war games that will only add to the combustible situation. No, this isn’t the Korean peninsula: it’s the northeastern corner of Europe. Flying deep under the...

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