Russia’s invasion of Ukraine — and Ukraine’s unexpectedly effective resistance to it — affected most international events of the past year. One byproduct of the war: A re-energized NATO, preparing to meet a possible Russian military threat, bolstered by the expected addition of two Nordic countries that previously resisted joining the alliance. China, a leading consumer of Russian energy exports, has held back from fully supporting Russia in the conflict but is challenging the United States over Taiwan and a widening range of strategic, economic and political issues elsewhere. As the Biden administration seeks to re-establish a strong American profile in the Indo-Pacific region and the always-restive Middle East, it set “Out-Competing China and Constraining Russia” as top priorities in its latest National Security Strategy. Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping met in November to discuss their relationship. Meanwhile, Iran has been shaken by weeks of national protests.

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