Joseph R. Biden, Jr., the Democratic nominee for president. Photo: Shutterstock

This week has brought so much more tension than we could have imagined — not because we didn’t expect drama or long waits, but because no matter how much you plan, it’s still hard to emotionally prepare yourself for this roller coaster. Why is it such a roller coaster? Because for many, it feels as though the future of our democracy and country is at stake. I’m sure I can speak for many when I say it’s been a nail-biting, wine-drinking, chocolate-eating, high- and low-feeling few days.

As I continue to waste my time scrolling through Twitter and listening to…

This past weekend, the leaders of the seven largest economies met in Biarritz, France for the annual Group of 7 (G7) Summit. Since President Donald Trump took office in 2017, the stories coming out of the G7 have been the stuff of reality TV. Last year, Trump left the Summit early after he refused to sign the communique. An infamous photo was released reportedly showing an argument between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Trump. The prior year Trump refused to recommit to the Paris Climate Change Accord, isolating the United States and causing an uproar domestically and abroad.


MOSCOW — JULY 26, 2012 — View of crowd at an opposition rally in support of activists jailed at the May 6 rally in Bolotnaya square. — Image by Nickolay Vinokurov

While at the Human Rights Foundation’s Oslo Freedom Forum a few weeks ago, Belarusian politician and activist Ambassador Andrei Sannikov told me, after a talk I gave on the role of sanctions in targeting human rights violators and corrupt actors, that he believes he was released from prison in Belarus because of European sanctions. Sannikov, who was a presidential candidate in Belarus’s 2010 elections, had been imprisoned for peacefully protesting at a demonstration following the elections. He was pardoned and released, he believes, due to sanctions.

At a separate panel I moderated at the Forum, Bill Browder, Chairman of the…

Hagar Hajjar Chemali

Host of Oh My World on YouTube. Former White House, US Treasury Department & US Mission to the UN. Opine on all things global affairs/foreign policy.

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