Stories by Ravi Somaiya

  • celebrities-international-affairs-wide

    Do Celebrities Help or Hinder When They Hijack Serious Issues?

    This week former Fugees musician Wyclef Jean declared he would run for the presidency in Haiti, and supermodel Naomi Campbell testified at a war-crimes trial in The Hague. Last month Lindsay Lohan found herself in the middle of a story about the imminent stoning of an Iranian woman. So is it a good thing when celebrities wander into the middle of serious issues?
  • wyclef-haiti-vision-wide

    Wyclef's Uphill Battle

    The former Fugee touts programs put forward by Bill Clinton in the aftermath of the quake. But the Port-au-Prince–born singer, who is running on the Viv Ansanm party ticket, has an uphill battle to prove to Haiti and the world that he can make the transition from musician to national leader.
  • nk-soccer-punishment

    North Korean Soccer Team Punished for World Cup Failure

    In June, the North Korean soccer team dropped out of the World Cup without a point after conceding 12 goals in three games. Since the players returned home, they have been publicly shamed, according to reports. The manager has been forced to become a construction worker, and there are fears for his safety.
  • taliban-target-wikileaks

    Taliban Says It Will Target Names Exposed by WikiLeaks

    The U.S. military has already accused WikiLeaks of having "the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family" on its hands after leaking 92,000 classified documents. The Taliban has now confirmed it is poring through the documents, and intends to hunt down and punish any suspected spies named.
  • durango-mexico-drug-war-hsmall

    Four Journalists Kidnapped in Mexican Drug Violence

    Earlier this week it emerged that prison officials in northern Mexico had allegedly let drug-gang assassins out repeatedly—and supplied them with weapons and trucks—to massacre 35 people. Now journalists covering the story have been kidnapped.
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    Shirley Sherrod Says She Will Sue Andrew Breitbart

    Shirley Sherrod, the US Department of Agriculture worker who was ousted after Andrew Breitbart released a video selectively edited to make it appear as if she had made racist remarks, has announced that she will sue the conservative blogger.
  • arizona-immigration-law-inmates-hsmall

    Judge Blocks Ariz. Immigration Provisions

    For now, at least, the state's police will not be forced to check immigration status while enforcing other laws, and immigrants will not be required to carry their papers.
  • tigers-kenny

    Inside America's Tiger-Breeding Farms

    Almost all of America’s 7,000 tigers are born and raised here. Reports from tiger farms suggest that animals are often kept in small pens, people die when safety is lax, and the cats are hideously inbred to produce valuable white cubs.
  • gal-tease-tigers-wide

    The Trouble With Tigers

    There are 3,000 tigers left in the wild. But there are more than 7,000 in America. Most are not in established zoos -- they're kept as pets, or mascots, even enforcers for drug dealers. NEWSWEEK looks at America's obsession with one of the world's deadliest predators.
  • Lawyer in Iran Stoning Case Is Now Targeted by Authorities

    Earlier this month, Iranian human-rights lawyer Mohammad Mostafaei helped draw the world's attention to his client, a woman who faced imminent stoning for adultery. Now, according to human-rights activists, he is in hiding himself for fear of retribution.
  • tease-wyclef-jean-haiti-president

    Wyclef Jean May Run for Haitian Presidency

    Former Fugees star Wyclef Jean, born outside Port-au-Prince, is not ruling out a run for president in the country's Nov. 28 election, according to a statement his family gave to the media.
  • mexico-prisoners-killilngs-wide

    Mexican Prisoners 'Let Out' to Kill as Cartel Assassins

    Staffers at a Mexican prison are accused of releasing inmates and giving them high-powered assault rifles and official vehicles so they can work as hit squads for drug cartels, and massacre rivals and civilians.
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    Sharron Angle Perfects Dodging Reporters

    It's not a bird. It's not a plane. That worried-looking blur reporters keep seeing in Nevada is Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle. Her new signature move is to (almost) literally sprint away from the press.
  • A Military Record Made for Washington?

    Wags are suggesting that the patchy military record of Alvin Greene, the unexpected Democratic Senate nominee in South Carolina, implies he could be a perfect fit in D.C. He was, reports the AP, "usually capable of handling mundane tasks with supervision."
  • More Twists in the Lockerbie Bomber Saga

    The Libyan jailed for blowing up Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988, killing 270 people, finds himself at the center of continuing international intrigue.
  • gay-marriage-graph

    The Slow March Toward Gay Marriage Rights

    Argentina recognized the legitimacy of gay marriage this week. Last week a judge in Boston struck down legislation that prevents such equal rights in the U.S. A look at the statistics shows a seemingly inexorable move toward recognizing same-sex marriage.
  • amiri-iran-nuclear-scientist-hsmall

    The Strange Tale of the Iranian Defector

    On Monday an Iranian nuclear scientist arrived by taxi at a Washington embassy and demanded to be returned to Iran. His tale is the latest in a recent spate of fascinating spy stories.
  • bp-feature-main

    The Road to Deepwater Horizon

    Company insiders, past and present, say the Deepwater Horizon disaster was not a mystery. They describe a risk-taking culture spanning decades where profits come before safety, and whistle-blowers are intimidated, pressured out, or fired. And though Hayward had promised to make the company safer when he became CEO in 2007, the pressure to cut costs has only intensified under his leadership as the oil company struggled to please shareholders.
  • Hundreds of Suspected Mafiosi Arrested in Italy, U.S.

    In the largest operation of its kind in 15 years, police officials have arrested more than 300 suspected mafia figures in Italy and the U.S. after bugging a dry cleaner owned by a suspected gangster.
  • mystery-terrorist-tease

    Who Is Al-Shabab?

    Al-Shabab, a militant Islamist group from Somalia, claimed responsibility for a spate of bombings Sunday across the Ugandan capital, Kampala, that killed scores of people. But who is this group? And does it have influence in the U.S.?
  • The Tale of the Barefoot Bandit

    After two years on the run, 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore, the alleged "barefoot bandit," who reportedly stole a plane and fled to the Bahamas, was caught in typically cinematic fashion.
  • alqaeda-brand

    Is Al Qaeda Now Just a Brand?

    Three men arrested on terror charges in Norway today, after a year long investigation, were described as having "links to people abroad who can be linked to Al Qaeda." Indeed, the Bin Laden brand is still often attached to Islamic terrorists and wannabes. But what, in a new era for Islamic terror, does it mean?