World

214 articles
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Let’s Die Together

The rise of anonymous group suicide in Japan.

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Trouble in Paradise

Pitcairn Island is impossibly remote, populated by descendants of a ship of British mutineers. Revelations that child molestation and rape had been a way of life for generations exposed them to the outside world.

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An Investigation Into Xinjiang’s Growing Swarm of Great Gerbils

Tracking a rumored gerbil infestation through China’s bureaucracy.

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The Torture Colony

A utopian German settlement in Chile had already turned darkly cultish by the time it became a secret torture site for enemies of the Pinochet regime.

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Mother Earth Mother Board

A 42,000-word, 3-continent spanning “hacker tourist” account of the laying of the (then) longest wire on earth.

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Basta Bunga Bunga

On Silvio Berlusconi’s hedonism.

Berlusconi is Italy’s waning Hugh Hefner, alternately reviled and admired for his loyalty to his own appetites—except that he’s supposed to be running the country.

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The Tunnels of Gaza

Life and death in an underground economy.

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The Expendables

Life in the French Foreign Legion.

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Kafka in Beijing

An alleged rape and one woman’s futile quest for justice in modern China.

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Here & Gone

On the strange relationship between Lionel Messi and his Argentinian hometown.

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Arab Spring Break

A 21-year-old UCLA math major leaves his $9,000-a-month internship to fight with the rebels in Libya.

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Death on the Path to Enlightenment

Westerners’ spiritual quests in India gone wrong.

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Inside China's Star-Making Machine

On China’s pop music charm offensive.

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The Quiet Hell of Extreme Meditiation

A trip to India for total silence.

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Leopold’s Ghost

A college president on the bizarre experience of being informed by NBC News that he had hired a war criminal to teach French.

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Russia's Top Cyber Sleuth Foils US Spies, Helps Kremlin Pals

A profile of Eugene Kaspersky, KGB-trained online security mogul.

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A Wild Week in Lagos

A trip to a modern African megacity.

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The Love That Dares

Confronting homophobia in Uganda.

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The Kingpins

Crime, drugs, and politics in Guadalajara.

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Lieutenant Accused of Murdering 109 Civilians

Revealing the murder of 109 Vietnamese civilians during a 1968 search-and-destroy mission on a rumored Viet Gong stronghold, often referred to in military circles as Pinkville, actually the village of My Lai.

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Cocaine, Inc.

How a Mexican drug cartel makes its billions.

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French Women Worry About Getting Fat, Too

On Jenny Craig’s European expansion and how dieting differs in France and the States.

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The Deported

Life in Mexico immediately after being forced to leave the U.S.

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The Devil They Know

A profile of former Liberian president Charles Taylor, who was sentenced to 50 years today after being convicted of committing crimes against humanity.

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The Great Taliban Jailbreak

On the escape of hundreds of insurgents from Kandahar’s Sarposa Prison through a tunnel dug from the outside, and an unlikely suspect: the jail’s former warden.

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Finding Oscar

A man living in the Boston suburbs learns he could be one of the only survivors of a 1982 massacre in Guatemala.

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Jamming Tripoli

Inside Moammar Gadhafi’s secret surveillance network.

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The Yankee Comandante

The story of William Morgan: American, wanderer, Cuban revolutionary.

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The Madness of General Mladic

A profile of former Bosnia Serb military commander Ratko Mladic, whose war crimes trial began, and was abruptly suspended, this week.

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A Giant Among Giants

As it approaches a public offering, how Glencore—founded by the legendary fugitive March Rich—cornered the market for just about everything by working with dictators and spies.

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I, Turbo

On spending six months on the southern coast of Argentina with the “Jane Goodall of penguins” and several hundred of her research subjects.

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The Invisible Army

The expansion of private-security contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan is well known. But armed security personnel account for only about sixteen per cent of the over-all contracting force. The vast majority—more than sixty per cent of the total in Iraq—aren’t hired guns but hired hands. These workers, primarily from South Asia and Africa, often live in barbed-wire compounds on U.S. bases, eat at meagre chow halls, and host dance parties featuring Nepalese romance ballads and Ugandan church songs. A large number are employed by fly-by-night subcontractors who are financed by the American taxpayer but who often operate outside the law.
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Mail Supremacy

On the Daily Mail’s dominance of England.

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Ivan the Recumbent, or Demjanjuk in Munich

A report from the trial of Ivan Demjanjuk—a.k.a. “The Last Nazi”—who died on March 17.

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Get Kony

Sam Childers, a Pennsylvania-based evangelical preacher, biker, and former drug addict, has devoted his life to catching crazed African warlord Joseph Kony.

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Graduation Day

The 2011 Tohoku Japan earthquake and tsunami, as experienced by eight schoolchildren.

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Between Roses in Mumbai

The story of a young man on the run in the slum he dreams of escaping.

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The Vagabond King

When 25-year-old Valentine Strasser seized power in Sierra Leone in 1992, he became the world’s youngest head of state. Today he lives with his mother and spends his days drinking gin by the roadside.

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The New Decembrists

Hanging out in Moscow with Russia’s yuppie, 20-something journalist revolutionaries:

In other words, the protest was being brought to you by the same people you would have relied on, weeks earlier, for restaurant picks.
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How to Get a Nuclear Bomb

Looking for holes in the world’s nuclear security.

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Exit Havel

A portrait of Czech President Václav Havel as he left office.

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The Place to Disappear

On Bangkok’s Khao San Road.

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Where the Rubber Meets the Road

On the arrival of Formula 1 in India.

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How We Were All Misled

On Michael Lewis and the global financial crisis.

Previously: The Michael Lewis World Tour of Economic Collapse
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The Good Bad Son

A profile of Seif Qaddafi.

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King of Kings

On the life, legacy, and last days of Muammar Qaddafi.

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Rift in Paradise

On the battles, both between humans and animals, in Africa’s overpopulated Albertine Rift.

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The Man Who Sailed His House

Two days after the Japanese tsunami, after the waves had left their destruction, as rescue workers searched the ruins, news came of an almost surreal survival: Miles out at sea, a man was found, alone, riding on nothing but the roof of his house.
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Goodbye to All That

On the life and afterlife of Che Guevara.

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The Predator

How an Italian thug looted MGM, brought Credit Lyonnais to its knees, and made the Pope cry.
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Loch Ness Memoir

A trip to Scotland and an investigation of enduring belief:

I remember reading about the deathbed confession, and how strangely sad it made me, even though I had not, at that point, believed in the monster for years. How much sadder, I wondered, would it make those who still believed in the existence of a monster in Loch Ness?

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How Fast Can China Go?

On the railways of China and a trip aboard its latest spectacle, a $32 billion line carrying passengers between Shanghai and Beijing at 170 MPH.

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Girls at War

On a group of teenage believers raised in settlements on the West Bank:

They say it takes one generation to found a new language. These girls are a new language, believing that they belong to the land on which they were born, and sponsored by the government they despise, which pays for their roads and electricity.

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Syria's Sons of No One

Inside the safe houses where Syrian youth protesters have retreated since the uprising:

Around his neck he wore a tiny toy penguin that was actually a thumb drive, which he treated like a talisman, occasionally squeezing it to make sure it was still there. I sat next to him on the mattress and watched as he traded messages with other activists on Skype, then updated a Facebook page that serves as an underground newspaper, then marked a Google Earth map of Homs with the spots of the latest unrest. “If there’s no Internet,” Abdullah said, “there’s no life.”

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Angry Youth

China’s new generation of neocon nationalists.

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How the World Failed Haiti

But despite all that has been promised, almost nothing has been built back in Haiti, better or otherwise. Within Port-au-Prince, some 3 million people languish in permanent misery, subject to myriad experiments at "fixing" a nation that, to those who are attempting it, stubbornly refuses to be fixed. Mountains of rubble remain in the streets, hundreds of thousands of people continue to live in weather-beaten tents, and cholera, a disease that hadn't been seen in Haiti for 60 years, has swept over the land, infecting more than a quarter million people.
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Corruption, Murder, and the Beautiful Game

On FIFA’s history of scandal.

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Enter the Cyber-Dragon

On a decade-long war:

Hackers from many countries have been exfiltrating—that is, stealing—intellectual property from American corporations and the U.S. government on a massive scale, and Chinese hackers are among the main culprits.

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Death in a Box

The truth and consequences of reporting from a war zone.

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Getting bin Laden

The story of the Abbottabad raid, in detail.

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Train to the Roof of the World

On riding China’s Qinghai-Tibet Railway just before it opened:

Staring out at the shimmering tracks and concrete-reinforced embankment extending to the horizon, I can’t help but think of the senior Chinese scientist who confessed to me that the rail line he helped build might not be safe for long.

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Hack Work

On Rupert Murdoch and the tabloid culture he created in the U.K.

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Cyber Weapons: The New Arms Race

Around the world, governments and corporations are in a race for code that can protect, spy, and destroy—hacks some secretive startups are more than happy to sell.

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Invisible Roma

On the plight of the modern gypsy in Europe.

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My Summer at an Indian Call Center

Next is "culture training," in which trainees memorize colloquialisms and state capitals, study clips of Seinfeld and photos of Walmarts, and eat in cafeterias serving paneer burgers and pizza topped with lamb pepperoni. Trainers aim to impart something they call "international culture"—which is, of course, no culture at all, but a garbled hybrid of Indian and Western signifiers designed to be recognizable to everyone and familiar to no one. The result is a comically botched translation—a multibillion dollar game of telephone. "The most marketable skill in India today," the Guardian wrote in 2003, "is the ability to abandon your identity and slip into someone else's."
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The Prince Who Blew Through Billions

On the brother of the Sultan of Brunei, Prince Jefri Bolkiah, who has “probably gone through more cash than any other human being on earth.”

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Black Ops and Blood Money

When a CIA operation in Pakistan went bad, leaving three men dead, the episode offered a rare glimpse inside a shadowy world of espionage. It also jeopardized America’s most critical outpost in the war against terrorism.

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A Constant Feeling of Crisis

What it means to be an entrepreneur in Argentina, where economic crashes are a way of life.

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The Long Interrogation

In the 1970s, Kelbessa Negewo was a midlevel administrator in Ethiopia’s brutal Red Terror regime. In the 1990s, he was a bellhop in an Atlanta hotel. Then someone he had tortured back home recognized him.

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The Chilling Story of Genius in a Land of Chronic Unemployment

On the ground in Nigeria with the nation’s notorious scam artists, who share a remarkable number of qualities with America’s top entrepreneurs.

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The Double Game

The unintended consequences of American funding in Pakistan.

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Woman of the World

On Hillary Clinton’s Arab Spring.

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After the Tsunami: Nothing to Do but Start Again

On the unlikely survival (for the second time) of Kamaishi, Japan.

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Shooting an Elephant

“It was a tiny incident in itself, but it gave me a better glimpse than I had had before of the real nature of imperialism–the real motives for which despotic governments act.” Memories of a British soldier in Burma.

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The Confidence Man

How Lalit Modi built a billion-dollar cricket empire—only to be exiled from his sport and homeland.

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On Libya's Revolutionary Road

The sudden, bloody transformation of normal citizens into rebels.

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The Struggle for Mexico

Has Mexico become a failed state?

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A Murder Foretold

Rodrigo Rosenberg, a highly respected corporate attorney in Guatemala, began, in the spring of 2009, to prophesy his own murder. The unraveling of a political conspiracy.

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4 Times Journalists Held in Libya Faced Brutality

No one really knows the script for days like these, and neither did we.
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Lula's Brazil

A 12,000-word profile of recently departed Brazilian President Luiz Inácio da Silva, the “most successful politician of his time.”

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Aftershocks

On the ground in post-disaster Japan.

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Digital Africa

How smartphones are changing a continent.

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Dubai on Empty

The surreal afterlife of the once-ascendant Dubai, where “the legacy of oil has made everything worthless.”

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For Us Surrender Is Out of the Question

A first-person account of the author’s time spent volunteering with a group of Burmese activists in Thailand, who turn out to be not Korean but in fact Karen, members of Burma’s persecuted ethnic minority. In the course of her time there, they show her videos of their risky forays across the border, and she shows them MySpace.

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North Korea’s Digital Underground

The perilous routes through which information—video footage, secret documents, radio broadcasts—flow in and out of North Korea through its porous borders with China.

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The Liberation of Lori Berenson

After nearly 15 years in a Peruvian prison, an American woman convicted of aiding a Marxist terrorist group finds parole in Lima full of contradictions.

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The School

First-person accounts from the 2004 siege of a Russian school in Beslan by Chechen terrorists.

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The Heir

One of most popular Libyan figures amongst Western intellectuals and democracy advocates is… Qaddafi’s second son, Saif.

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Teodorin's World

A profile of Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, the Malibu-dwelling, “fantastically corrupt” dictator-in-waiting of Equatorial Guinea. Teodorin, as his friends call him, is considered by U.S. intelligence to be “an unstable, reckless idiot.”

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Chernobyl, My Primeval, Teeming, Irradiated Eden

Twenty-five years later, inside the Exclusion Zone.

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The Mexican Suitcase

A suitcase was smuggled from Spain to Mexico during the Spanish Civil War containing negatives from three photographers would later become legends and all die in war zones. The suitcase disappeared.

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Letter from Libya: Circle of Fire

On Colonel Muammar Qaddafi, “the permanent revolutionary,” and his son Seif.

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Revolution U

What Egypt learned from the students who overthrew Milosevic. “The Serbs are not the usual highly paid consultants in suits from wealthy countries; they look more like, well, cocky students. They bring a cowboy swagger. They radiate success. Everyone they teach wants to do what the Serbs did.”

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Joseph Kony's Long Walk To, and From, Hell

The Ugandan rebel Lord’s Resistance Army, drawn mostly from kidnapped children, has proved as elusive as it is barbaric.

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The Kingdom of Silence

The story of three months spent training reporters in Saudi Arabia, where the press is far from free. “I suspected that behind the closed gates of Saudi society there was a social revolution in the making. With some guidance, I thought, these journalists could help inspire change.”

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Why Egypt's Progressives Win

An opinion piece on the structural causes of unrest in Egypt; the business fraternity, globalization, and the fate of Egyptian women.

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The Last Wailer

A trip to Kingston, Jamaica to track down Bunny Wailer, a reggae legend now living “in his own private Zion.”

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The Novelist and the Sheikh

On the Cairo knifing of 82-year-old Nobel Prize winner Naguib Mahfouz and its aftermath.

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‘Mubarak, Mubarak, What Have You Done?

February 1st, 2011. Tahrir Square, Cairo.

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The Rape and Rescue of Kuwait City

Reporting from Kuwait on the week of its liberation, a brutal account of the atrocities committed during seven months of Iraqi occupation.

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Humanity's Endless Quest to Invent a Death Ray: A History

From the Greeks to George Lucas, 2,200 years of failure.

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When Irish Eyes Are Crying

How a nation went bankrupt. “Ireland’s regress is especially unsettling because of the questions it raises about Ireland’s former progress: even now no one is quite sure why the Irish suddenly did so well for themselves in the first place.”

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A Remote Town in Romania Becomes Cybercrime Central

A trip to Râmnicu Vâlcea, a town of 120,000 where the primary (and lucrative) industry is Internet scams.

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From Russia With LØpht

How a legally dubious FBI sting lured a pair of Russian hackers stateside.

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The Afghan Connection

Money from relatives abroad, the lifeline for many Afghani's, moves primarily through small hawala
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Mubarak’s Last Breath

A primer on Egypt’s political landscape.

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Eden: A Gated Community

What happened when the founder of North Face and Esprit bought a chunk of Chile the size of a small state, intending to live with a select group inside it and turn it case study for ecological preservation. It turned out, however, that Chileans didn’t really like that idea.

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1989!

On the illusion of the inevitable and the revolutions that ended the Eastern Bloc.

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The Facebooks of China

How the social networks that popped up in Facebook’s absence—the site is not available behind the Great Firewall—are changing Chinese culture.

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Rio’s New Reality Show

How the relationship between favela-based drug gangs and elite police units tasked with fighting them came to define Rio de Janeiro.

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The Kingdom in the Closet

On gay life in Saudi Arabia.

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The Doctor Will Sue You Know

Mattathias Rath made a fortune selling cure-all vitamins in Europe before moving his business to South Africa, where he launched a massive campaign against retroviral AIDS medications and in favor of his own vitamin cocktails. When scientists, AIDS non-profits, and even Medecins San Frontieres objected, he sued.

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Welcome to Haiti's Reconstruction Hell

On the utter brutality of life in the tent cities, one year after the earthquake.

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The Dubai Job

Last year, an Mossad hit squad traveled to Dubai to assassinate a Hamas leader. They completed their mission, but were later humiliated when a twenty-seven minute video of their movements was posted online. How their cover got blown.

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Internacionalista

Memories of the expat revolutionary scene in 1980s Nicaragua. An excerpt from Revolution: The Year I Fell in Love and Went to Join the War.

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The Other Side of Hate

“In 2000, Zimbabwe’s dictator began kicking white farmers off their land. One man decided to stay.”

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Jihadists in Paradise

A ragtag band of pirate-Jihadists grab Americans from a diving resort in the Phillipines and lead them on an odyssey through the jungles of an archipelago with the competing interests of the Phillipines’ Navy and Army, the U.S. Military, and the C.I.A. thwarting their rescue.

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The Hunt for White October

Colombian traffickers have a new smuggling method of choice: specially designed submarines capable of carrying 10 tons of cocaine and covering 2,000 miles without refueling.

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Next stop, Forbidden City

The fever-dream life and death of Chinese poet Gu Cheng.

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A Mountain of Trouble

Anatomy of an international incident; how three idealistic young American hikers wandered across the Kurdistan-Iran border and ended up in Iranian prison charged with spying.

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The Concealed Battle to Run Russia

Putin, Medvedev, and how the Russian security agency FSB became the “new nobility.”

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In Search of Lost Paris

“Most cities spread like inkblots; a few, such as Manhattan, grew in linear increments. Paris expanded in concentric rings, approximately shown by the spiral numeration of its arrondissements.”

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The Shipbreakers

On a desolate, six-mile stretch of Indian beachfront, the bulk of the world’s big ships are dismantled for scrap. Though a ship is usually worth over $1 million in steel, the margins are low, the leftovers are toxic, and the labor—which employs huge numbers of India’s poor—is wildly dangerous.

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If It’s Tuesday, It Must Be the Taliban

At tourism’s wildest frontier; guided tours of Afghanistan.

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Amakusa: Islands of Dread

The history of a Japanese archipelago and its inhabitants, through rebellions and famine, a 20th century exodus for prostitution work across Asia, and finally depopulation and isolation.

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The Real-life Swedish Murder That Inspired Stieg Larsson

A Stockholm prostitute is found hacked apart in a dumpster, her head is never found. Two accomplished doctors, confirmed creeps, are arrested. Uncertainty endures.

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Gandhi's Invisible Hands

The team of assistants that made Gandhi.

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Tehran Nights

Published on the eve of Iran’s 2009 presidential election and subsequent protests, a look at the booze-fueled, hijab-less underground party scene in the capital.

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A Death in the Sanchez Family

An oral history of a family in Mexico City, in transition from poverty to the lower-middle class, as they scramble to organize the burial of a slum-dwelling aunt.

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Disneyland with the Death Penalty

William Gibson’s controversial take on the sanitized wonderland that is Singapore.

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The Man Behind Mumbai

An investigation into Lashkar-i-Taiba, the group behind the 2008 Mumbai massacre, and why Pakistani authorities has not arrested their leaders.

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If You Knew Sushi

A stroll through Tokyo’s Tsukiji, the world’s largest seafood market, and the mecca of the global sushi trade.

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La Violencia

Scenes from the new Tijuana: two teenage brothers from the country club set descend into the cartel underworld, bored federales guard the acid pit where hundreds of bodies were erased, families picnic through a chain-link border fence.

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Mikhail Khodorkovsky's Day in Court

Mikhail Khodorkovsky, oil magnate and once the richest man in Russia, delivers a speech from prison, where he has lived since 2003.

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Fading Horrors of the Grand Guignol

The macabre, ultra-violent plays put on at the Grand Guignol defined an era in Paris, attracting foreign tourists, aristocrats, and celebrities. Goering and Patton saw plays there in the same year. But the carnage of WWII ultimately undermined the shock of Guignol’s brutality, and audiences disappeared.

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Outcasts: Inmates of the Black Eagle

Russia has ended its death penalty, leaving in its place five prison “colonies” to house its most hardened criminals, nicknamed “The White Swan”, “The Black Dolphin”, “The Vologda Coin”, “The Village of Harps”. Inside “The Black Eagle.”

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Can you give my son a job?

On China’s modern-day Communist Party and why foundational myths can never be shed.

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Studio Kabul

On the set of Afghanistan’s first soap opera and at home with its cast.

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Mexico convoy threads its way through strange drug war in Sonora state

Far outside of Juarez, villagers in rural areas are trapped without supplies or protection as rival cartels attempt to starve each other out of ranch hideouts. A heavily armed convoy attempts to deliver pensions behind siege lines.

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Congo: The Horror

Inside the conflict that has caused more deaths than any since WWII—with no end in sight.

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As Nations Age, a Chance for Younger Nations

The world’s population is rapidly getting older. How China and other countries stocked with young workers are taking advantage.

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The Murderers of Mexico

The narcocorrido-immortalized Pacific coast traditionalists, the kidnap-crazed Gulf coast Zetas, and massacres that no longer seem tied to a discernible purpose; inside the ruins of the Mexican-American border.

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The Snatchback

If your ex-spouse takes your child and hightails it abroad, the legal system often isn’t on your side. So what can you do? One option: hire a former Army ranger named Gus Zamora to take back your kid.

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Germany's Unlikely Diplomatic Triumph

A behind-the-scenes account of the tense negotiations, involving Gorbachev, Kohl, Bush, and Thatcher, that led from the aftermath of the fall of the Berlin Wall to a reunified Germany. (Translated from German.)

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The Mega-Bunker of Baghdad

Foreign policy as architecture; how embassies went from lavish social hubs to reinforced strongholds.

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The Big Lie of Foreign Aid

An interview with Michael Maren, who spent nearly twenty years working in Africa as an aid worker and then a journalist, on why NGOs and “feed an African child” charities do more harm than good.

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The Gangster Prince of Liberia

How the illegitimate son of Liberian ex-President (and accused cannibal) Charles Taylor went from being a small time Florida hoodlum to one of Africa’s most notorious killers.

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From Russia With Prenup

The relative prosperity of the Putin-era has thrown Russian bride-introduction tours for a loop, as a group of American bachelors learn in a series of Meet and Greets.

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In the City of Death

In Torreón, north of Mexico City, cartel gunmen are freed from a prison, commit a massacre at a wedding that includes the band, and then return to custody.

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The Chessboard Killer

Russian serial killer Alexander Pichushkin was so prolific that even he doesn’t know how many he killed.

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Maoists in the Forest

India’s greatest terror threat may not be militants slipping across the Pakistani border, but rather the homegrown Maoist rebels who control the villages of the interior.

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The Anarchic Republic of Pakistan

“There is perhaps no other political-military elite in the world whose aspirations for great-power regional status, whose desire to overextend and outmatch itself with meager resources, so outstrips reality as that of Pakistan.”

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After the Fall

A trip to interview former South Vietnamese premiere Ky on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the reunification of Vietnam ends with government surveillance, partying, and confusion.

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Beware of Greeks Bearing Bonds

Riots in Athens, the shadowy Vatopaidi monastery, and a quarter million dollars in debt for every citizen. Welcome to Greece.

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I Fell In Love With a Female Assassin

A young reporter heads to Colombia to report on the conflict between FARC and the paramilitaries. He meets a girl on the bus. After they begin a relationship, she reveals that that she is part of a death squad.

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Russia's Spam King

The unsolved killing of Russia’s most notorious spammer.

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The Pirate Latitudes

A blow by blow account of the seizure of a French cruise ship by Somali pirates.

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My Kushy New Job

Lessons learned while temping at an Amsterdam coffee shop.

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Journeys Into History

Inside Rebecca West’s vast Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, an eerily timeless travelogue of the Balkans written on the eve of WWI.

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House of War

The bloody, often surreal, fight for Kosovo’s independence was led by a man moonlighting as a roofer in Switzerland.

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Islam’s Answer to MTV

A new Egyptian TV channel called 4Shbab—“for youth” in Arabic—aims to get young people interested in Islam through music videos and reality shows.

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The War for Drugs

How Juarez became the murder capital of the world.

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The Mussolini of Ass

How sex scandals have made Silvio Berlusconi even more powerful in Italy.

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After the Crackdown

A year after dozens died protesting his election and hundreds more were imprisoned, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad grants a rare interview to an American journalist.

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China's Cyberposse

When members of China’s massive bulletin-board forums perceive wrongdoing, they form a “human flesh search engine” and seek out real world vigilante justice.

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City of Fear

How PCC, once an inmate soccer team and now Brazil’s most notorious prison gang, coordinated seven days of riots throughout São Paulo using mobile phones.

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Monopoly Killer

How a dental equipment salesman from Germany named Klaus Teuber invented the perfect board game, Settlers of Catan.

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Kill Company

The shoot-first-and-ask-questions-later culture of the 101st Airborne Division, an execution of captured Iraqi prisoners, and how far up the chain of command responsibility lies.

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The Lizard, the Catacombs, and the Clock

The story of the most secret underground society in Paris.

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Moscow's Stray Dogs

The complex, highly evolved world of Moscow’s subway-riding stray dogs.

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The Decisive Ones

In post-Shock and Awe Baghdad, the relationship between a war reporter and his Iraqi guide falls apart.

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Thoughts on Thailand

What exactly is going on politically in Thailand?

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Shutting Themselves In

When Japanese men in their teens and twenties shut themselves in their rooms, sometimes for a period of years, one way to lure them out is a hired “big sister.”

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The Traffic Guru

A Dutch traffic engineer showed that streets without signs are safer than those cluttered with arrows, painted lines, and lights.

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The Runaway General

“Stanley McChrystal, Obama’s top commander in Afghanistan, has seized control of the war by never taking his eye off the real enemy: The wimps in the White House.”

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The Healer

After a racial hazing incident, the first black head of South Africa’s University of Free State confronts the myths of the reconciliation era.

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The Last Island of the Savages

A voyage to North Sentinel island, home to one of the last entirely isolated populations on Earth.

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Rules for Drone Wars

A conversation with NYU Law Professor Philip Alston on the legality of ‘targeted killings’ by drones, which have made headlines in Pakistan, but also have been deployed by the C.I.A. in countries like Yemen.

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The Smit Murders Reexamined

It is agreed that the 1977 political murder of a couple in Johannesburg was a political killing that covered up mysterious Swiss Bank deposits. Various reports implicate Cuban Nationalists, Italian Fascists and the CIA.

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The Liberation of Tam Minh Pham

In 1970, he was plucked from Saigon to attend West Point. He got his degree and went home to fight, but instead spent six years in a reeducation camp. Then, somehow, he ended up teaching high school in D.C.

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Afghanistan: ‘So This is Paktya’

Night raids by the “Hash Monster” and other perils facing American soldiers at a remote base in the wilderness of the Paktya Province as they attempt to turn over power to the Afghan Army.

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Jungle Law

It’s the biggest environmental lawsuit in history. The people of Lago Agrio, an oil-rich area in the Ecuadorean Amazon, are suing Chevron for $6 billion after decades of spills. The case has been underway since 1993.

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Iraq’s Walking Dead

Kurdistan is the safest and most stable region in Iraq and at the center of its modern history is Amna Surak Prison, ground zero for both a genocide and an uprising.

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The Integrationist

Job Cohen, the current mayor of Amsterdam, is leading the Dutch race for Prime Minister on a platform of racial integration that could transform the relationship between European politics and immigration.

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This Side of Ultima Thule

A dispatch from the frozen, drunken wasteland of Eastern Siberia.

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Farewell then, Dr Andrew Wakefield

The doctor behind the autism-vaccine uproar is removed from the General Medical Council for being “dishonest,” “misleading” and “irresponsible” in his research into the MMR vaccine.

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Lost Exile

The rise and fall of The Exile, Russia’s angriest English-language newspaper.

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None Dare Call it Conspiracy

Banned in Russia and cut by Conde Nast from the GQ website, this story (presented in full) details the intrigue behind the Moscow apartment bombings, blamed on Chechens, that allowed Putin to rapidly ascend to power.

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The Last Penal Colony

The island of Coiba off the coast of Panama is both a nature preserve and an open-air prison.

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The Dark Side of Dubai

Seized passports, debtor’s prison, and slave labor prop up a Disneyland in the desert now in decline.

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The Land of Perpetual Revolution

What’s really happening in Kyrgyzstan.

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China’s Arranged Remarriages

Both the Chinese government and private matchmakers are laboring to unite people who lost spouses and children in the earthquake.

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The Dividing Line

On the day of the earthquake, two men went into Haiti’s Soccer Federation headquarters. Only one came out.

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Confessions of an Opium-Seeker

From Hong Kong to Bangkok to the Golden Triangle, the author searches for something everyone says no longer exists: an opium den.

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Sinatra Song Often Strikes Deadly Chord

Karaoke renditions of ‘My Way’ have led to murders in the Phillipines.

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The Most Hated Name in News

Al-Jazeera English dominated the international coverage of the 2008-2009 Gaza war. And now it’s poised to invade North America.

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High Rollers, Triads, and a Vegas Giant

Las Vegas casinos operating in Macau rely on “junkets” to bring in the gambling elite, but the money and murder for hire trails lead straight to the Triads.

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60 Hours of Terror

The defining, minute-by-minute account of the 2008 attacks in Mumbai.

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The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen

The improbable and true story of how Al Sharpton, Cornel West, Marion Barry’s wife, and Tucker Carlson (yes, that Tucker Carlson) flew to Liberia to negotiate a ceasefire in the midst of a civil war.

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The Snakehead

Working from a tiny shop in Chinatown, Sister Ping helped thousands of Chinese immigrate illegally by boat. By the time one of her ships ran aground, the F.B.I estimated her total profits at $40 million.

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Double Blind

Kevin Fulton, a spy planted in the IRA, thought he was dead when he faced interrogation by a notorious IRA enforcer. But, it turned out, the enforcer was also an agent. How British intelligence undermined the IRA.

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Been There. Done What?!

Jillian Lauren, wife of Weezer bassist Scott Shriner, grew up middle class and now lives in a three-bedroom house in L.A. In between, she was a part of a royal harem in Brunei.

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The Cocaine Coast

In nine hours, Guinea-Bissau’s President and military leader were assassinated in separate incidents. Their dealings had turned the country into the runway of choice for drug smugglers and Hezbollah.

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China Storms Africa

China is securing sub-Saharan Africa’s natural resources at a staggering rate. With the buying spree comes contracts, workers, and of course, politics. (Part 1 of a 6 part series, rest here)

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An Elephant Crackup?

Recently, African Elephants have been killing people, raping rhinos, and exhibiting uncharacteristically aggressive behavior. An investigation reveals deep similarities between elephants’ and humans’ reaction to childhood trauma.

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“Oh My God—We Hit a Little Girl”

The true story of M Company: from Fort Dix to Vietnam in 50 days.

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The Hunted

The inside story of how an ABC nature shoot in Africa end up producing  a snuff film.

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The fascist who loved me

When Nazi-sympathizing politician Jorg Haider died in a crash, his 27-year-old protégé Stefan Petzner was left to lead the Austrian far right—and to mourn the boss who he revealed was also his lover.