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This Happened

This Happened—December 2: The Princess Of Pop Is Born In The Deep South

On this day, proud parents in a small town in Mississippi would welcome a baby girl destined to become the Princess of Pop.

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Where is Britney Spears from? 

Britney Spears was born in McComb, Mississippi on December 2 1981. She began singing and dancing at age 2, and her parents soon began entering her in talent shows.

At the age of 8, she auditioned for Disney’s The All New Mickey Mouse Club but was deemed too young. She got her first agent and spent her summers attending New York’s Professional Performing Arts School. She made her first TV appearances and joined the Mickey Mouse Club two years later, at only eleven years old.

What was Britney’s first album? 

Britney’s first album Baby One More Time was released in 1999 at the age of 17. The eponymous hit song sparked a controversy because of its lyrics and provocative music video, but Britney’s career was well on its way and she released her second album Oops! I Did It Again in 2000.

What happened between Britney Spears and her parents?

In 2008, Spears was involuntarily placed under the conservatorship of her father. After years of abuse and thanks to support from her fan with the #FreeBritney movement and other celebrities, she ended the conservatorship in November 2021, and has since been back on social media and gotten married again.

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Geopolitics

Winning African Hearts And Minds? Why Russia Has An Edge Over The West

Russia's Foreign Minister is in South Africa for the second time in a year. In spite of the West's best efforts, Vladimir Putin's delegation is still welcomed in large parts of Africa, which still harbors colonial resentment toward Europe.

Photo of Sergey Lavrov during his visit to South Africa

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and South Africa's Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor shake hands

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — Sergey Lavrov, Russia's Foreign Minister, has not traveled much since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. But he arrived yesterday on an official visit to South Africa, his second official trip there in a year.

But it is not a coincidence: Africa is a priority for Russian diplomacy.

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The West was caught off guard when, at the United Nations last year, a large part of Africa refused to condemn the Russian aggression on Ukrainian territory. They were all the more surprised because, since the 1960s, the African continent has wisely adopted a principle recognizing the borders inherited from colonization: it wanted to avoid possible inter-state targeting, which is what Russia is trying to do in Ukraine.

Moscow has been able to capitalize on this refusal of Africa to align itself with the West.

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