Political Capital

Nicole Gaouette

A striking worker of the French state-run rail operator SNCF, backed by French union Sud-Rail lights a flare as he demonstrates against reform plans proposed by the French government on June 24, 2014 in Paris.

Photograph by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP via Getty Images

A striking worker of the French state-run rail operator SNCF, backed by French union Sud-Rail lights a flare as he demonstrates against reform plans proposed by the French government on June 24, 2014 in Paris.

Kerry Makes Paris, 192 miles, in 90 Minutes: Trains, not Planes

Secretary of State John Kerry usually measures travel in terms of miles flown on the dedicated red-white-and-blue government aircraft he uses for global travel. Today in Belgium, he resorted to an older, more public form of transport: The train. Late...

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An Iraqi army vehicle, burned by ISIS forces on the outskirts of Mosul, in Iraq on June 12, 2014.

Photograph by Onur Coban/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

An Iraqi army vehicle, burned by ISIS forces on the outskirts of Mosul, in Iraq on June 12, 2014.

As Iraq Reels, War’s Fathers Mum

With Iraq under siege from Islamic militants bent on creating a Caliphate that includes areas of Syria, Jordan, Iraq, and Lebanon, U.S. policy has come under fire. Critics are demanding that President Barack Obama fire his national security team. Analysts...

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A Jewish man comes out of a small synagogue, after prayers, on a Saturday morning, in Jubare, the old Jewish quarters of Isfahan, Iran.

Photograph by Kaveh Kazemi/Getty Images

A Jewish man comes out of a small synagogue, after prayers, on a Saturday morning, in Jubare, the old Jewish quarters of Isfahan, Iran.

Tehran’s Twitter Diplomacy: Holocaust Denier Was the Last Guy

Twitter diplomacy, Tehran-style: Yesterday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani wished Jews in his country and around the world a Happy New Year, sparking some optimism about a softer diplomatic style in Tehran. He was followed by the country’s foreign minister, Mohammad...

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Iranian President elect, Hasan Rouhani, a former Iran's top nuclear negotiator, waves, from his bus, during his presidential election campaign tour to the western city of Sanandaj, Iran, on June 10, 2013.

Photograph by Vahid Salemi/AP Photo

Iranian President elect, Hasan Rouhani, a former Iran's top nuclear negotiator, waves, from his bus, during his presidential election campaign tour to the western city of Sanandaj, Iran, on June 10, 2013.

Iranian Leader’s Tweets: Healing #Wound with U.S.

Could Iran be changing, 140 characters at a time? The Persian nation’s new president-elect, Hassan Rouhani, turns out to be a big fan of Twitter. @HassanRouhani, the account that purports to be Rouhani’s and is seen as legitimate by many...

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Jordan's Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh (R) speaks during a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, on July 16, 2013 in Amman. Kerry was focused on advancing the peace talks amid turmoil in Egypt and Syria

Photograph by Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Jordan's Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh (R) speaks during a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, on July 16, 2013 in Amman. Kerry was focused on advancing the peace talks amid turmoil in Egypt and Syria

Kerry in Jordan: Cooler than D.C.

Secretary of State John Kerry, making his sixth trip to the Middle East in five months, has set the expectations for this expedition quite low: On the plane over, #SecKerry made clear this could be a very low-key two days;...

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Opponents of Egypt's Islamist President Mohammed Morsi hold a large Egyptian national flag during a protest outside the presidential palace, in Cairo on July 2, 2013.

Photograph by Hassan Ammar/AP Photo

Opponents of Egypt's Islamist President Mohammed Morsi hold a large Egyptian national flag during a protest outside the presidential palace, in Cairo on July 2, 2013.

Mursi Timer: Counting Down Egypt President’s Deadline

President Barack Obama told Egypt’s embattled leader Mohamed Mursi yesterday that he must take steps to show the millions protesting his rule that he understands their complaints and will be responsive. Just a few hours earlier, the country’s military delivered a similar message, but...

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U.S. Ambassador to the Syrian Arab Republic, Robert Ford, testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Capitol Hill on April 11, 2013 in Washington, DC.

Photograph by Win McNamee/Getty Images

U.S. Ambassador to the Syrian Arab Republic, Robert Ford, testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Capitol Hill on April 11, 2013 in Washington, DC.

U.S. Point Man on Syria to Step Down

Ambassador Robert Ford, the Obama administration’s point person on efforts to organize the Syrian opposition, will step down in July after a grueling two years of work on the issue. Ford, who was the ambassador in Damascus until violence forced him to...

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Senator Rand Paul, a Republican from Kentucky, questions a witness during a Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations hearing in Washington, D.C., on May 21, 2013. Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook defended his company's use of offshore tax shelters before U.S. senators who castigated the most-valuable technology company for avoiding $9 billion and more in payments.

Photograph by Pete Marovich/Bloomberg

Senator Rand Paul, a Republican from Kentucky, questions a witness during a Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations hearing in Washington, D.C., on May 21, 2013. Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook defended his company's use of offshore tax shelters before U.S. senators who castigated the most-valuable technology company for avoiding $9 billion and more in payments.

Paul Echoes White House in Opposition to Arming Syrians

A small corner of hell may be freezing over. Sen. Rand Paul, the Kentucky Republican and fierce Obama administration critic, today opposed a bill to provide arms to Syrian rebels with an argument that could have come straight from the...

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