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Highlights from CFR

August 2, 2013

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

A Faustian Pact: Generals as Democrats

Steven A. Cook

Egyptian liberals and pluralists' acceptance of a coup is understandable, but they are playing with fire. Egyptians will have to challenge the military's autonomy, economic interests, and singular role as the source of legitimacy and authority before full democracy is possible. Read the Op-Ed »

Zimbabwe's Underhanded Autocrat

Michael Bratton

Unlike in 2008, Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe will probably not have to use brutal violence to triumph in today's elections. He has put in place a system of security, legal, fiscal, and administrative measures so rigged in his favor that force will be unnecessary. Read More on ForeignAffairs.com »

COMPREHENSIVE MIDDLE EAST PEACE TALKS

Why Cautious Pessimism Prevails

Robert M. Danin

Mutual cynicism persists over the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, but previous Mid-East diplomatic experiences offer a little hope for progress. Read the Op-Ed »

The Unsettled Question

Elliott Abrams and Uri Sadot

The argument over population growth in West Bank settlements and the number of Israelis living outside the major blocs will heat up amid peace talks. The ambiguity over this important question has allowed interested parties to fill in the blanks with answers that best suit their political narrative. Read the Op-Ed »

Israel vs. Iran, Again

Jonathan Tepperman

That the Israeli side will be led by Tzipi Livni, a coalition partner Netanyahu doesn't like or trust, and that even before the talks were announced another of his cabinet members anonymously declared them little more than a ruse, shows how seriously Bibi takes them. Read the Op-Ed »

An Interactive Overview of the Crisis

For decades, the effects of the Israel-Palestinian conflict have reverberated throughout the Middle East and the world. Its complex and often contested history are critical to understanding the origins of the dispute. View the Interactive »

 

Reducing Gun Trafficking and Violence in the Americas

Julia E. Sweig

Although the Senate rejected measures to expand background checks on firearms sales, reinstate a federal assault-weapons ban, and to make straw purchasing a federal crime, the Obama administration can still take executive action to reduce the availability and trafficking of assault weapons and ammunition in the Americas. Read the Policy Innovation Memorandum »

Watershed Election in Cambodia

Joshua Kurlantzick

The large voter turnout and surprisingly high support for the opposition party in this past Sunday's election show that the Cambodian people have not lost faith in the democratic process. Read More on Asia Unbound »

THE WORLD AHEAD

An Audio Preview of the World Next Week

Robert McMahon, James M. Lindsay

In this week's podcast, Lindsay and McMahon discuss Iranian president-elect Hassan Rowhani's inauguration; the first six months of President Obama's second term; and Japan sending the first robotic astronaut into space. Listen to the Podcast »

Can Iran's Rowhani Bring Change?

Gary Samore

The inauguration of Iranian president Hassan Rowhani opens the possibility of direct dialogue with the United States regarding Iran's nuclear program. Bilateral talks would allow both sides to discuss the kind of nuclear constraints the Obama administration expects in exchange for relieving Iran from U.S. sanctions. Read the Interview »

Is France Heading South?

Dominique Moisi

If France moves in the direction of Greece and Spain, the consequences for the European Union could be calamitous. Read the Interview »

Closing Guantanamo: No Small Order

Matthew C. Waxman

Even if President Barack Obama closes the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, the move would still likely push difficult decisions onto his successor Read the Op-Ed »

Global Comparisons on Same-Sex Marriage

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights worldwide have made significant gains in recent decades, though acceptance of nonheterosexual orientations remains uneven across and within countries. This guide examines policies toward same-sex couples in select countries. Read the Backgrounder »

Helping New York City Compete Globally

New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed relaxing building restrictions in the East Midtown office district. The rezoning would cultivate the investment needed to grow a denser, taller, more modern office district to rival those in London, Paris, Shanghai, and other cities. Read More on Renewing America »

Ask CFR Experts: Question of the Week

Michael from the University of St. Gallen asks whether the South China Sea is a core interest for China. Although Chinese officials have equivocated on the claim that it is a "core interest," they continue to emphasize the protection of their territorial integrity, which in their view includes the South China Sea, says CFR's Paul B. Stares. Read the Full Answer and Submit Your Question

WORLD EVENTS CALENDAR

August 4: Inauguration of Iranian President-Elect Hassan Rowhani
CFR Resources on: Iran

August 8: Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras to Meet with President Obama, Washington, DC
CFR Resources on: Greece

View the Calendar »

INSIDE CFR

Earlier this week, Foreign Affairs managing editor Jonathan Tepperman hosted a media call with CFR Senior Fellow Robert M. Danin on Middle East peace talks. Read the Transcript

Former U.S. ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Karen Kornbluh, joined CFR as a senior fellow for digital policy. Ambassador Kornbluh will participate in the CFR Initiative on Digital and Cyberspace Policy, which studies how to keep the global Internet open, secure, and resilient in the face of unprecedented challenges and threats.

CFR President to Chair All-Party Talks in Northern Ireland

CFR President Richard N. Haass has agreed to chair talks intended to tackle some of the most divisive issues affecting Northern Ireland. The panel is to present a set of recommendations supported by all the parties before the end of this year.

 

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