THE ATLANTIC

News feeds from The Atlantic magazine.

The Atlantic

  • A ‘Quiet Revolution’ Comes to Ireland
    Updated at 1:51 p.m. ETDUBLIN—It was clear a big change was coming to Ireland even as the final votes were still being tallied: Exit polls Friday night showed an overwhelming majority of Irish citizens had voted “Yes” to overturn their country’s constitutional ban on abortion. And on Saturday, it was official.It was supposed to be a much closer contest, and the overwhelming margin in the final tally conflicted with polls leading up to the vote, which seemed to show a public about evenly split on the issue. In the end, roughly 66 percent of Irish voters supported repealing the Irish ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-26
  • North Korea Wants to End up Like Pakistan, Not Libya
    When Donald Trump canceled his planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un—before hinting that it might happen anyway after all, as the South Koreans moved into damage-control mode on Saturday with an impromptu summit of their own—it followed days of discussion over a historical parallel: Libya. U.S. National-Security Adviser John Bolton said the basis for a deal with North Korea was the “Libya model” from 2003 to 2004, when Muammar Qaddafi essentially handed over his entire nuclear program to the United States. For North Korea, however, this allusion to Libya looked “awfully sinister” because, in 2011, less than ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-26
  • ‘There’s a Perception That Canada Is Being Invaded’
    It may seem paradoxical. Last year, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appeared to issue an open invitation to refugees with a tweet declaring, “to those fleeing persecution, terror & war ... #WelcomeToCanada.” This year, his government is working hard to deter thousands of people who are walking over the U.S. border to seek asylum in Canada.Canada has begun granting refugee status to fewer irregular border crossers—that is, people who walk into the country without going through a designated port of entry. Since President Donald Trump was elected, over 27,000 people have crossed into Canada overland. (By comparison, only 2,000 people ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-26
  • Radio Atlantic: Is the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Past Solving?
    The decades-old dispute between Israelis and Palestinians seems to be at a new low these days. Two American-born writers – an Israeli author and a Muslim journalist – join editor-in-chief Jeffrey Goldberg and global editor Kathy Gilsinan to grapple with the bleak state of affairs. Yossi Klein Halevi is the author of the new book Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor. Wajahat Ali recently traveled to the West Bank to write “A Muslim Among Israeli Settlers” for the June 2018 issue of The Atlantic. The four discuss how we got here and what paths forward remain.Links - “A Muslim Among Israeli ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • Photos of the Week: Jedi Academy, Small Moon, Royal Wedding
    Danny Lawson / AFP / Getty A giant glowing puppet in Australia, a cat rescued in Colombia, lava flows in Hawaii, Ramadan observed in India, devastation in Damascus, a balanced taxi in New York City, biking into the river in Germany, bats in India, and much more. ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • Trump’s and Bolton’s Instincts Form a Toxic Combination
    Why did the Trump administration cancel its much-hyped nuclear summit with North Korea? And why the confusing semi-backtrack the following day, in which Trump embraced North Korea’s “warm and productive statement” regretting the cancellation, and left the door open to a meeting he’d ditched barely 24 hours before? The answer lies in the toxic interplay between Donald Trump’s instincts and John Bolton’s. Each man’s foreign-policy views are dangerous enough in and of themselves. Put them together and you have the perfect cocktail for the decimation of American power.Bolton is a Manichean in the tradition of his hero, Barry Goldwater. He ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • Trump to North Korea: I Want You to Want Me
    Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un are both, in relative terms, rookies at the arts of diplomacy. That might explain why the state of American-North Korean diplomacy these days so resembles an awkward adolescent flirtation.First came the jilted-lover tone of the letter that Trump sent Thursday. Then came a conciliatory statement from North Korea, and by Friday morning, the president was saying that summit might go off as planned on June 12. Defense Secretary James Mattis even dismissed the whole thing a so much teenaged drama, calling it “the usual give and take.”At the core, this give and take—usual or ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • Is the U.S. Bringing Europe and Russia Closer Together?
    Nearly one year after hosting Russian President Vladimir Putin at Versailles, French President Emmanuel Macron went to St. Petersburg. The French leader, who is addressing the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum Friday, held direct talks with his Russian counterpart Thursday, during which the two discussed the crisis in Ukraine, the war in Syria, and, perhaps most pressingly, how to salvage the Iran nuclear deal both France and Russia are party to.Such a visit would have been awkward just two months ago. At that time, tensions between Moscow and Europe had reached Cold War-era heights after a former Russian spy was ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • What Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un Don’t Know About Their Own Standoff
    When President Donald Trump canceled his June summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, he told him in a letter that the past few days of “tremendous anger and open hostility” had made it “inappropriate” for the two to meet and discuss denuclearization. “You talk about your nuclear capabilities,” Trump wrote, “but ours are so massive and powerful that I pray to God they will never have to be used.” The language echoed a January tweet in which the president wrote, “I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • Ireland’s Very Secular Vote on Abortion
    DUBLIN—Millions of Irish people are voting today on whether to liberalize or maintain the country’s abortion laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world. Polls opened in the early morning, but the results of the referendum won’t be announced until Saturday. Regardless of how people vote, Ireland’s relationship to abortion has already changed. “We’re having conversations now that we have never had before in my country,” Fiona de Londras, a professor of global legal studies at the University of Birmingham, told me.As voters prepared to cast their votes, it seemed there wasn’t a street pole in Dublin without ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-25
  • An Exasperated White House Official Laments North Korea’s ‘Trail of Broken Promises’
    A senior White House official said on Thursday that while it “wasn’t helpful” for the North Koreans to call the vice president of the United States a “political dummy” and threaten America with nuclear war, it wasn’t rhetoric alone that doomed Donald Trump’s planned nuclear summit with Kim Jong Un in Singapore.Instead, speaking to reporters in a background briefing, the official aired a range of grievances about the Trump administration’s dealings with North Korea in the lead-up to the June 12 meeting—only some of which had been previously disclosed. They amounted to evidence of “a profound lack of good faith.”The ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • Trump’s Reckoning Arrives
    “Gradually and then suddenly.” That was how one of Ernest Hemingway’s characters described the process of going bankrupt. The phrase applies vividly to the accumulating failures of President Trump’s foreign-policy initiatives.Donald Trump entered office with more scope for initiative in foreign policy than any of his recent predecessors.In his campaign for president, Trump had disparaged almost every element of the past 70 years of U.S. global leadership: NATO, free trade, European integration, support for democracy, the Iraq War, the Iran deal, suspicion of Russia, outreach to China. Trump’s election jolted almost every government into a frantic effort to understand what ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • The U.S.-China Confrontation Takes On a New Dimension
    If China’s intentions in the South China Sea weren’t quite clear, this month should have removed doubt. News reports said China had installed anti-ship cruise missiles and surface-to-air missile systems on the disputed Spratly Islands—and had also built 400 buildings that can accommodate its military forces on a reef there. Then, China said it had landed bombers on manmade islands in disputed waters in preparation for what it called “the battle for the South China Sea.” It then emerged that a bomber landed on an island in the disputed Paracels.Taken individually, China’s actions might indicate a geopolitical game of chicken ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • The Word That Derailed the Trump-Kim Summit
    Of all the countries that might have acted as a spoiler for the summit in Singapore between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un—China, Russia, Japan, the United States and North Korea themselves—the one that doomed it was unexpected. It isn’t even involved in North Korea diplomacy and is located a long 6,000 miles away from the Korean Peninsula. It’s Libya.Yet Libya ought to have been top of mind. It’s notoriously difficult to determine what motivates the strategic choices and polices of North Korea’s leaders, but among the factors that has been evident for some time is Kim Jong Un’s fear ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • Trump’s Very Trumpian Letter to Kim Jong Un
    Donald Trump’s approach to North Korea has always been an intensely personal one—the president contended that his sheer force of will and negotiating prowess would win the day, and rather than use intermediaries, he planned for a face-to-face meeting, with himself and Kim Jong Un on either side of a table.So Trump’s notice on Thursday that he was canceling the June 12 summit in Singapore was fitting. It arrived in the form of a letter that appears to have been written by the president himself. The missive features a Trumpian mix of non sequiturs, braggadocio, insults, flattery, and half-truths. Whether ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • Vaccines Alone Won’t Beat Ebola
    Three people who had been infected with Ebola recently left an isolation ward at Wangata Hospital against medical advice, according to the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Ministry of Health. The hospital lies in Mbandaka, a city of 1.2 million, where health workers are trying to contain the Congo’s ninth Ebola outbreak. One patient was on the mend, but decided to leave on Sunday and didn’t come back. Two more left with their families on Monday and went to church. One died at home, before his body was returned to the hospital for safe burial. The other returned voluntarily, before ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • Donald Trump’s Strange Letter to Kim Jong Un
    It was going to be the first meeting between an American president and a North Korean leader in history—an audacious effort to resolve the crisis over North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons. But on Thursday—after days of bitter back-and-forth between the United States and North Korea over how to approach denuclearization, with a North Korean official threatening a “nuclear-to-nuclear showdown” with the U.S. even as the North Korean government destroyed a nuclear test site as a show of good faith—the White House abruptly announced that the June 12 summit in Singapore would not take place.The news came in a letter ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-24
  • Italy’s Populist Victory Is Both Tragedy and Farce
    PARIS—Will a certain dream of Europe end with a bang or a whimper, with a calamity or a thousand paper cuts, with a grand dramatic moment or a tawdry local melodrama? That’s the question that has been swirling around in Europe ever since two populist, Euroskeptic parties triumphed in Italy’s national elections in March. The vote failed to produce a solid majority, plunging the country into weeks of confusing backroom negotiations that have made serious people despair and markets tremble. But this week, the anti-establishment Five-Star Movement and anti-immigrant League party, which joined together in an unsettling marriage of convenience ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-23
  • Former South Korean National-Security Adviser: The U.S. May Have to Withdraw Some Troops
    SEOUL, South Korea—In a striking challenge to his fellow conservatives ahead of nuclear talks between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un, a top aide to former South Korean President Lee Myung Bak told me that South Koreans will “have to live with” a reduction in American forces in Korea “if that’s necessary and there’s no other way to denuclearize North Korea.”“If we can make a deal with the U.S. on the basis of partial withdrawal—a drawdown of U.S. troops—that’s something I think we should discuss seriously,” said Chun Yung Woo, who served as national-security adviser to Lee—a conservative hard-liner on ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-23
  • Trump Almost Always Folds
    President Trump’s May 8 announcement that he was withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal should not have come as a surprise. He’d spent years railing against the plan—“the worst deal ever,” he dubbed it—and had promised to rip it up. And yet up to the moment when the president made the final call, there was still some suspense about what he would say.This was not merely wishful thinking by the deal’s backers, though it was partly that. It was not only that members of Trump’s team, most notably Defense Secretary James Mattis, had voiced support for the deal. It wasn’t ..... READ MORE
    Source: The AtlanticPublished on 2018-05-23