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An old argument says that full or empty bellies lead to contentment or revolt. Recent research supports that claim, showing that spikes in global food prices have coincided with the surge of social unrest and political instability seen recently in North Africa and the Middle East. (more)

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Remember when North Korea loomed menacingly as the next big nuclear threat on the world stage, with cognac-swilling Communist Kim Jong Il starring as the latest dictator du jour? What a difference a few years can make: The North Korean government has now demonstrated its willingness to halt the country's nuclear weapons program and has begun accepting food shipments from the U.S. and increased aid from the World Food Program.

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