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On August 23, 1973, an escaped felon named Jan Erik Olsson walked into the Kreditbanken in central Stockholm and attempted to rob it at gunpoint. When Stockholm police arrived on the scene, Olsson opened fire and injured one policeman before taking four bank employees hostage. He demanded that his fellow convict, Clark Olafsson, be brought to the bank along with…
In 1748, as part of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, France regained Cape Breton from Great Britain. The island, off the coast of Nova Scotia, had passed back and forth between the two countries over the years, and previous treaties had been as binding as toilet paper. But as part of the 1748 treaty, Great Britain sent several British peers to…
For the last few decades in the Middle East, the policy of western powers — led by the United States — has been to ensure the flow of oil; maintain stable and secure allies like Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the Gulf States, Egypt, and Israel; and maintain military and economic influence when needed. Usually these ends were met through economic…
In the wake of the Paris attacks, Europe is being pulled in two directions at once. On the one hand is the rise of localist nationalism in the form of border closings, border fences, and Euroskepticism. On the other hand is the rise of renewed militarism as the French state calls for even more aggressive foreign policy from its European…
There may be a responsible way to fight the Islamic State, but the U.S. will have to leave its boots in the closet and the drones in the hangar. The atrocities of ISIS become more shocking every day. In June, the Iraqis exhumed nearly 600 bodies of Shia recruits in Tikrit, an important Sunni Triangle city north of Baghdad. ISIS…
Alexis Tsipras had a choice. As the leader of the fledgling Syriza government in Greece, he could have told the European Union to stuff its austerity plan. He could have taken the risk that the EU would offer a better deal to keep Greece in the Eurozone. Or, failing that, he could have navigated his country into the uncharted waters…
Between now and next April, four members of the European Union (EU) will hold national elections. They'll go a long ways toward determining whether the 28-member organization will continue to follow an economic model that's generated vast wealth for a few, widespread misery for many, and growing income inequality for all.
Historically, low oil prices have been perceived by many as an overriding positive for the economy. This has especially been the case in the United States where most households rely on car travel as a primary means of transport. Low oil prices allow households to spend more on economic activities other than gasoline and other oil-related expenses. Historically, every time…
Memory is selective and therein lays an explanation for some of the deep animosity between Berlin and Athens in the current debt crisis that has shaken the European Union (EU) to its foundations.
Bitcoin, a peer-to-peer digital currency, operates without the involvement of traditional financial institutions and provides a direct digital alternative to physical currencies and commodities. Governments worldwide generally do not yet see it and other digital currencies as a destabilizing "threat," and some scholars have argued that it may best be seen as a speculative investment. Bitcoin has certainly had its…

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