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Geopolitics

Staff Favorites: Our 16 Best Stories Of 2016

Goodbye 2016!
Goodbye 2016!
Worldcrunch/Photofunia

PARIS — Our crack staff of serious but seriously subjective journalists, translators and editors have chosen what we believe to be the year's most engaging and provocative Worldcrunch stories.

America And Us, Trump's Victory Is Very Bad News For The World

FRANCE — Les Echos, Nov. 21


Panama Papers: Link Between Magnitsky Probe And Putin's Cellist Pal

GERMANY — Süddeutsche Zeitung, May 4


Letter From A Turkish Prison, When A Journalist Writes About Erdogan

TURKEY — Le Monde, Jan. 14


The German Detective Hunting Down The Last Nazis In Brazil

BRAZIL — Folha de S. Paulo, April 8


Flaws And All, The World Will Miss Barack Obama

GERMANY — Die Welt, Nov. 4


Botticelli to Body Shaming: How Our Ideal Of Beauty Went Awry

ARGENTINA — Clarin, March 28


At Former Soviet Nuclear Test Site, "Best Not To Take Souvenirs'

KAZAKHSTAN — Kommersant, Sept. 23


How To Buy Antiquities Looted By ISIS From An Italian Mobster

ITALY — La Stampa, Oct. 19


Brexit, The Tough Lessons Europe Must Learn

FRANCE — Le Monde, June 24


Trump Victory: We'll Never Talk About Globalization The Same Way Again

UNITED STATES — Le Figaro, Nov. 13


A Woman's Sacred Right To Wear Shorts — Or A Headscarf

TURKEY — Cumhuriyet, Sept. 30


Little Britain, Petite Europe — Lost In This Big Bad World

FRANCE — Les Echos, June 28


Poland's Abortion Battle, Why Free Women Are Done With Weak Men

POLAND — Gazeta Wyborcza, Oct. 27


Muslim And Hipster, Why "Mipster" Fashion Is Trending

SWITZERLAND — Le Temps, June 4


Time To Choose Between Oil Wealth And Saving The Planet

ARGENTINA — Clarin, July 21


A Father's Perilous Hunt For His Sons, Lost To Syria And ISIS

GERMANY — Die Welt, April 4

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Society

In Northern Kenya, Where Climate Change Is Measured In Starving Children

The worst drought in 40 years, which has deepened from the effects of climate change, is hitting the young the hardest around the Horn of Africa. A close-up look at the victims, and attempts to save lives and limit lasting effects on an already fragile region in Kenya.

Photo of five mothers holding their malnourished children

At feeding time, nurses and aides encourage mothers to socialize their children and stimulate them to eat.

Georgina Gustin

KAKUMA — The words "Stabilization Ward" are painted in uneven black letters above the entrance, but everyone in this massive refugee camp in Kakuma, Kenya, calls it ya maziwa: The place of milk.

Rescue workers and doctors, mothers and fathers, have carried hundreds of starving children through the doors of this one-room hospital wing, which is sometimes so crowded that babies and toddlers have to share beds. A pediatric unit is only a few steps away, but malnourished children don’t go there. They need special care, and even that doesn’t always save them.

In an office of the International Rescue Committee nearby, Vincent Opinya sits behind a desk with figures on dry-erase boards and a map of the camp on the walls around him. “We’ve lost 45 children this year due to malnutrition,” he says, juggling emergencies, phone calls, and texts. “We’re seeing a significant increase in malnutrition cases as a result of the drought — the worst we’ve faced in 40 years.”

From January to June, the ward experienced an 800 percent rise in admissions of children under 5 who needed treatment for malnourishment — a surge that aid groups blame mostly on a climate change-fueled drought that has turned the region into a parched barren.

Opinya, the nutrition manager for the IRC here, has had to rattle off these statistics many times, but the reality of the numbers is starting to crack his professional armor. “It’s a very sad situation,” he says, wearily. And he believes it will only get worse. A third year of drought is likely on the way.

More children may die. But millions will survive malnutrition and hunger only to live through a compromised future, researchers say. The longer-term health effects of this drought — weakened immune systems, developmental problems — will persist for a generation or more, with consequences that will cascade into communities and societies for decades.

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