Bottom Line Up Front Iran is the Middle East’s epicenter for the spread of the COVID-19 infection. The failure of Iran’s leaders to contain the virus add to the other ongoing challenges of the regime, including domestic unrest and U.S. economic and military pressure. Iran has become even more ...

  Bottom Line Up Front Countries are struggling to counter the spread of the coronavirus respiratory disease, while also trying to figure out how to navigate a range of political, economic, and logistical challenges. High levels of distrust that populations in authoritarian countries have toward their governments will, at least ...

  Bottom Line Up Front: The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is China’s principal foreign policy vehicle and may be the most significant geopolitical strategy of the 21stCentury. BRI now extends to approximately 70 countries and is increasingly folding EU-countries under its infrastructure investment umbrella—most recently, Italy. Beijing’s investments in European ...

Gone are the times when the Italian Communist Party preserved its political and strategic autonomy when competing in domestic politics, while supporting the Soviet Union in international politics. Firmly in the Western camp, all Italian governments over the past few decades were happy enough to be members of the two ...

Editor’s Note: Over the coming days, The Cipher Brief presents some of our most incisive coverage on key issues of 2016 and a look ahead at what is yet to come in 2017. The tumultuous nature of 2016 hit Europe especially hard. Wars in the Middle East became a refugee ...

The European Union remains strong, despite the British vote to leave the organization and Sunday’s Italian vote to reject constitutional changes backed by Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, the EU envoy to the United States told the Cipher Brief on Wednesday. In addition, EU Ambassador David O’Sullivan expressed optimism about the ...

Italians called to confirm or reject Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s constitutional reform on December 4 may be under the impression that they are participating in a plebiscite on the popularity of their young, bold, over-confident leader. To be sure, an unnecessarily heated, confused and ultimately misleading electoral campaign has spread ...

Italians head to the polls on Sunday, December 4, to approve or reject a series of constitutional reforms, which will redirect policy competence from the regions to the state, transform the Senate into a council of regions, and concentrate power in the Chamber of Deputies and the national government. Italian ...

On December 4, Italians will vote on a far-ranging constitutional referendum, which promises to completely change the way that Italy's political institutions operate. Proponents of the referendum, led by Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, claim that a “Yes” vote is necessary to streamline Italy’s creaking parliamentary system and allow vital reforms ...

On Sunday, Italians definitively voted “No” to a constitutional referendum supported by the country’s Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi. After the vote, in which nearly 60 percent of 33 million voters rejected the bill, Prime Minister Renzi said that he would fulfill the promise he made earlier this year to resign ...