Politics & Policy : Parallels U.S. policy can change the course of another country and, increasingly, the reverse is true. From social issues to geopolitical strategy, we connect the dots — and seek out possible lessons for the future.

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Politics & Policy

Relatives of defendants gather outside the courthouse in the central Egyptian city of Minya on Tuesday. Some 700 Islamists charged with deadly rioting were on trial. The day before, the court sentenced 529 men to death for killing a policeman. AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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AFP/Getty Images

Parts of the fence along the U.S.-Mexico border might stop vehicles, but they don't keep out those making the journey on foot. Kainaz Amaria/NPR hide caption

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Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Crossing The Desert: Why Brenda Wanted Border Patrol To Find Her

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President Obama and Michelle Obama meet Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican in 2009. The president will meet Pope Francis at the Vatican on Thursday. Getty Images hide caption

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Getty Images

The Sometimes Tricky Relations Between Popes And Presidents

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Russian lawmaker Leonid Slutsky wears a ribbon to show support for Russia's takeover of Crimea. The same symbol is used to mark the Soviet victory in WWII and dates back centuries. Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP hide caption

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Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP

Afghan Special Forces converge on an Independent Election Commission office after the Taliban launched an assault on the compound Tuesday in Kabul. Two suicide bombers detonated their vests outside the offices while gunmen stormed the building. David Gilkey/NPR hide caption

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David Gilkey/NPR

St. Petersburg-based Bank Rossiya is the only Russian institution to be sanctioned by the Obama administration. The measures are beginning to have an effect on the Russian economy. Elena Ignatyeva/AP hide caption

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Elena Ignatyeva/AP

Workers arrive at an assembly plant located along the border. Kainaz Amaria/NPR hide caption

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Kainaz Amaria/NPR

On The Mend, But Wounds Of Violence Still Scar Juarez

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Dob Cunningham (left) and his friend Larry Johnson look over the edge of Cunningham's 800-acre ranch in Quemado, Texas. Kainaz Amaria/NPR hide caption

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Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Always Watching: A Fragile Trust Lines The U.S.-Mexico Border

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Russian President Vladimir Putin looks on as Crimean leaders sign a treaty for Crimea to join Russia on Tuesday. In response, Western countries have imposed limited sanctions. Sergei Ilnitsky/AP hide caption

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Sergei Ilnitsky/AP

Western Sanctions On Russia Are 'A Shot Across The Bow'

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Salvador Sanchez Ceren, of the ruling Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN), narrowly won the country's presidential election last week. Now he faces difficult challenges in a poor country that's been plagued by gang violence. Esteban Felix/AP hide caption

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Esteban Felix/AP

Pro-independence campaigners attend a rally In Edinburgh, Scotland, in September. Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images hide caption

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Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

After 300 Years Of Marriage, Scotland Contemplates U.K. Divorce

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Men install a Russian flag and a Crimean flag Monday on the roof of the city hall building in the Crimean city of Bakhchysarai. Crimeans voted overwhelmingly on Sunday to join with Russia. Ukraine's government rejects the move as illegitimate. Dan Kitwood/Getty Images hide caption

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A Russian flag blows outside the entrance of Crimea's parliament building in Simferopol on Thursday. Crimeans vote Sunday on whether they want to join Russia, though the international community says it will not recognize the ballot. Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images

Australian journalist Peter Greste (center) of Al Jazeera and his colleagues stand inside the defendants' cage during their trial for allegedly supporting the Muslim Brotherhood at Cairo's Tora prison on Mar. 5. Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images

In Egypt, A New Courtroom Drama Every Day

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