Special Reports


Insight - Islamic State expands its 'state'


BEIRUT - Almost a year after Islamic State's shock capture of Mosul, Iraq's second city, the black flags of the jihadis have been raised over Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province to the west of Baghdad, seat of Iraq’s increasingly theoretical central government.

Special Report - Britain's home-grown tax haven

LONDON - One hallowed feature of Britain's finances is a tax break for individuals called "non-domiciled status." The break, which is more than 200 years old, is designed to attract foreign investors by allowing them to keep wealth they make abroad out of the reach of the British tax authority. Tax specialists say Britain is the only developed country to have such a system.

22 May 2015

Insight - Stretched Afghan army falls back on militias to help defend Kunduz

KUNDUZ, Afghanistan/KABUL - The Afghan government has enlisted hundreds of militia fighters controlled by local commanders to battle Taliban militants near the northern city of Kunduz, officials said, underlining how the armed forces are struggling to tackle the insurgency alone.

22 May 2015

Insight - How an off-the-cuff remark shaped Jeb Bush's economic vision for U.S

WASHINGTON - There were no fancy economic models or forecasts when former Florida Governor Jeb Bush first tossed out the idea that 4 percent annual growth should be the overarching goal for the U.S. economy.

22 May 2015

Insight - Burundi ruling party youth rattles nerves in ethnic tinderbox

NGOZI, Burundi - In the Burundian president's rural stronghold, his party's youth wing dismisses the fears of those who have fled the east African nation that it is gathering arms and sharpening knives for a new bout of ethnic bloodletting.

21 May 2015

Insight - New breed of food executives raised on mergers, not marketing

LONDON - The consumer goods world has long been dominated by marketing whiz kids raised through the ranks of Procter & Gamble or PepsiCo, but the executives now in demand come from a new school that values cost-cutting and mergers over marketing.

21 May 2015

Insight - Gaddafi's home town falls to Islamic State in anarchic Libya

SIRTE, Libya - Standing guard at his frontline post, Libyan soldier Mohammed Abu Shager can see where Islamic State militants are holed up with their heavy weaponry less than a kilometre away.

21 May 2015

Special Report - Defence auditor approved flawed Marine Corps books

WASHINGTON - On Feb. 6, 2014, the U.S. Defense Department celebrated a historic victory: The Marine Corps had just become the first branch of the military to pass a financial audit in the two decades since such audits were required by law.

20 May 2015

Insight - Small food makers on fast path to US store shelves, threatening big producers

NEW YORK - Small U.S. food manufacturers once toiled for decades to develop a critical mass of fans for their products. Now, an increasing number of privately-held players are going from garage to grocery store in fewer than five years thanks to an erosion of barriers to entry within the food industry.

21 May 2015

Insight - Is nicotine all bad?

LONDON, - Since he ditched Marlboro Lights five years ago, Daniel's fix is fruit-flavoured nicotine gum that comes in neat, pop-out strips. He gets through 12 to 15 pieces a day and says he has "packets of the stuff" stashed all over. But he doesn’t see himself as a nicotine addict.

19 May 2015

Jayalalithaa to return as chief minister of Tamil Nadu

CHENNAI - One of India's most powerful politicians, Jayalalithaa Jayaram, is set to return as chief minister of Tamil Nadu following a nine-month break, after a court overturned her conviction in a corruption case.