A NATO soldier aims his weapon during a gun battle in Kabul, Afghanistan, in April. NATO is holding a summit in Chicago this weekend, and discussing the future of the alliance is on the agenda. Musadeq Sadeq/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Musadeq Sadeq/AP

South Koreans watch a TV showing a graphic of North Korea's rocket launch at a train station in Seoul on Friday. Jung Yeon-Je/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Jung Yeon-Je/AFP/Getty Images

Khairat el-Shater, a leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, leaves the election committee headquarters in Cairo on Thursday after registering for the presidential election next month. A delegation from the Brotherhood is currently visiting Washington to talk about the group's plans for Egypt's future. Mohammed Hossam/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Mohammed Hossam/AFP/Getty Images

Oil tankers sit at a NATO supply terminal in the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi on Feb. 9. In November, Pakistan's government shut down the main routes for bringing supplies to U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan. Masroor/Xinhua/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Masroor/Xinhua/Landov

With the Russian presidential election set for next month, the heavily favored candidate, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, visited the election center last week as it prepared for the polls. Yana Lapikova/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Yana Lapikova/AFP/Getty Images

Communist Party activists in Moscow campaign on Dec. 2 for the party's candidates in parliamentary elections. The Russian Communist Party is hoping to capitalize on a wave of dissatisfaction with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and his ruling United Russia party. Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/Getty Images

Tens of thousands of people filled an avenue in Moscow on Christmas Eve to protest the alleged rigging of the Dec. 4 parliamentary polls in a challenge to Russian strongman Vladimir Putin's authority. Yuri Kadobnov /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Yuri Kadobnov /AFP/Getty Images

Relying on social media, Russian activists are attempting to organize more mass rallies against the Russian government. Here, protesters staged a huge rally in Moscow on Dec. 24, 2011, alleging vote rigging in parliamentary polls. Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki shakes hands with President Obama in the Oval Office at the White House on Monday. The two leaders met as the U.S. prepares to withdraw the last of its combat troops from Iraq. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Afghan President Hamid Karzai calls Monday on the international community to keep up its support for Afghanistan. More than 100 countries attended the conference in Bonn, Germany. Oliver Berg/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Oliver Berg/AFP/Getty Images

Syrian has come under increasing international pressure in recent days. On Monday, Syrians protested in the capital Damascus against the Arab League's decision to impose sanctions. Syria has also come under sharp criticism from an independent commission that accused the security forces of systematically carrying out abuses against anti-government demonstrators. Yin Bogu/Xinhua /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Yin Bogu/Xinhua /Landov

Hussain Haqqani, Pakistan's ambassador in Washington (right), talks to President Asif Ali Zardari in Multan, Pakistan, in August. Haqqani resigned over claims he wrote a memo to Washington asking for its help in reining in Pakistan's powerful military. B.K. Bangash/AP hide caption

itoggle caption B.K. Bangash/AP

Pakistani protesters shout slogans during a protest in Multan on Oct. 14 against U.S. drone attacks in Pakistani tribal areas. Officials said U.S. drone strikes on Oct. 13 killed 10 militants, including a senior commander in the Haqqani network. Drone attacks are one way the U.S. hopes to squeeze the Haqqani militants. AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption AFP/Getty Images

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and President Obama hold a joint news conference in Australia on Wednesday. The U.S. is sending some 250 U.S. Marines to the country next year, a number that will later grow to 2,500. Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images