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How The Minimum Wage Battle Will Shape 2016 U.S. Election

With the primary season about to kick off, questions about economic inequality — and the fact that even with jobs, many Americans can't climb out of poverty — are taking center stage.

Demonstrating in NYC for a raise in the minimum wage.
Demonstrating in NYC for a raise in the minimum wage.
Elsa Conesa

NEW YORK — The countdown has started. In less than three weeks, Iowa voters will be the first to choose their candidate for each party. Will Hillary Clinton beat her very left-wing rival Bernie Sanders hands down? Who, among Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and Ben Carson, will fly the Republican flag?

The date is eagerly awaited, but not for the reasons one might imagine. The first signal sent by the "purple state" (it's neither decidedly Democrat nor Republican) will, of course, provide a first glimpse of what the rest of the race might look like. But it will also offer a hint as to whether the solid economic recovery that can be seen in employment or growth figures, month after month, has become a daily reality for Americans.

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Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

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In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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