"America's troubles give a sense to outsiders that its political system is flawed, and standing up regional leaders suggests its foreign policy is broken. Obama's much-vaunted pivot to Asia is said to be about counterbalancing China's rising might. Events this week seem to show China stealing a march," the South China Morning Post writes in an editorial.
"The Cruz faction is a rump caucus, but it will have more influence the more GOP leaders fail to deliver any reform. Mr. Obama can reduce its influence if he uses this moment as an opening for compromise rather than to humiliate House Speaker John Boehner into surrender or a debt-limit crack-up," the Wall Street Journal writes in an editorial.
"Although China's currency reserve managers may lose some sleep this month, its leaders will gain in global stature as they come across as serious and moderate in the face of the Washington frat-house spectacle," writes William Pesek for Bloomberg.
Former Islamist Warlord Registers for Afghan Presidency
Abdul Rasoul Sayyaf, a former Islamist warlord who brought al-Qaeda's leading figures to Afghanistan, registered Thursday to run in the country's presidential elections next year (WSJ). Sayyaf is backed by the chairmen of both chambers of the Afghan parliament.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is launching talks to form a "grand coalition" following her September 22 victory in federal elections (al-Jazeera). Merkel, leader of the Christian Democratic Union, will meet on Friday with Social Democrats for talks that could drag into next year.
A U.S. judge decided that Argentina's plan to use a debt swap to pay some of its creditors would violate a previous court's injunction (Bloomberg). Roughly 93 percent of creditors agreed to the swap, but a handful of hedge funds held out for a full payout.