from Ian Bremmer:

This is not Ukraine: Venezuela will erode, not explode

By Ian Bremmer
February 28, 2014

Presidents beleaguered by mass protests seem to use the same phrasebook. After protests turned exceptionally violent in Ukraine, the security agency waged an “anti-terrorist operation” in retaliation. Within days, President Yanukovich’s support had crumbled, he had fled, and the “radical forces” he disparaged had seized power. In Venezuela, President Maduro has dubbed the billowing unrest a spree of “fascism” aiming to “eliminate” him; he urged the opposition to halt its acts of “terrorism.”

from Unstructured Finance:

Eminent Domain reader

July 15, 2012

Jenn Ablan and I have done a lot reporting on Mortgage Resolution Partners' plan to get county governments and cities to use eminent domain to seize and restructure underwater mortgages. As we've reported, it's an intriguing solution to the seemingly intractable problem of too much mortgage debt holding back the U.S. economy. But it's also a controversial one that threatens to rewrite basic contractual rights and the whole notion of how we view mortgages in this country.

from Photographers' Blog:

Portraits of Russian voters

February 29, 2012

By Will Webster

Russia goes to the polls on March 4, in a presidential election that present Prime Minister and former two term President Vladimir Putin is widely expected to win. Russian politics is a strange beast, opaque is the most constructive word to describe the process of moving and shaking that goes on in the corridors of power. A whole class of analytical Kremlinologists aim to shed light on the minutiae of the process, although opinions widely differ, and the outcome appears to be the same - 6 more years of Putin in top spot. In this atmosphere behind closed doors, with one outcome highly probable, it's difficult to illustrate the campaign trail, if such a thing exists. However in this story of same old, same old, there is a group of individuals that stand out, that no one seems to ask about: the Russian people - they are the ones that cast the votes. People like Anatoly, an artist from Moscow.

from FaithWorld:

Did Bahrain’s Shi’ite opposition squander its democracy chance?

May 31, 2011

(Thousands of protesters gather at Pearl Roundabout in the heart of the Bahraini capital Manama February 15, 2011/Hamad I Mohammed)

from FaithWorld:

Bahrain Sunni says majority Shi’ite opposition must change leaders

May 30, 2011

(An anti-government protester waves a Bahraini flag during a rally in Manama March 3, 2011/James Lawler Duggan)

from FaithWorld:

Muslim Brotherhood treads cautiously in the new Egypt

February 16, 2011

cairo sunset

(A girl waves an Egyptian flag at sunset in Cairo February 14, 2011 /Suhaib Salem)

from FaithWorld:

Egypt opposition needs time, or Islamists will win – party

By Reuters Staff
February 14, 2011

clean egypt

(Opposition supporters clean up Tahrir Square in Cairo, February 13, 2011/Dylan Martinez)

from FaithWorld:

Banned Islamists say time for change in Morocco

February 7, 2011

mosque morocco

(A mosque in Ksar el Kebir February 5, 2008/Rafael Marchante)

The banned Islamist group Justice and Charity, believed to be Morocco's biggest opposition force, has said "autocracy" will be swept away unless the country pursues deep democratic reform.

from FaithWorld:

Tide turns in favour of Egypt’s Brotherhood in revolt

February 7, 2011

brotherhood

(Essam El-Erian, spokesperson for the Muslim Brotherhood, at a news conference in Cairo February 6, 2011/Mohamed Abd El-Ghany)

from FaithWorld:

Interview -Tunisian Islamists say they’re excluded, call for unity govt.

By Reuters Staff
February 3, 2011

ghannouchi

(Sheikh Rachid Ghannouchi speaks during an interview with Reuters in Tunis February 3, 2011/Louafi Larbi )