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Council on Foreign Relations State and Local Officials Bulletin
December 2012

December 2012

Refocusing U.S.-Mexico Security Cooperation

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Barack Obama meets Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico's new President, in Washington, DC. (Eric Thayer/Courtesy Reuters)


In this Policy Innovation Memorandum, CFR Senior Fellow Shannon O'Neil analyzes U.S.-Mexico security cooperation and recommends shifts in U.S. policy to address the current challenges.

According to O'Neil, the United States needs to take stock of Mexico's changing political landscape and work with the new government to support its ongoing judicial reform, training of police officers at the state and local levels, modernization of the U.S.-Mexico border, and investments in local community programs.

To learn more about the specific steps the United States should pursue to improve security and cooperation on both sides of the fence, read the report>>


CFR New Fellowship Opportunities

The Council on Foreign Relations' (CFR) Fellowship Program offers unique opportunities for mid-career professionals interested in pursuing proposed research and broadening their perspectives on international issues affecting the priorities and agendas of state and local governments. Click here to learn more about the program, fellowship opportunities, and application process.

Freeing the Global Market from Regulatory Distortions

This CFR Working Paper by Shanker Singham, chairman of the International Roundtable on Trade and Competition Policy, details the growing problem government-imposed anticompetitive market distortions pose to international trade. Singham offers suggestions for how the United States and partners might address these distortions and persuade other nations to adjust their practices.

Listen to Mr. Singham discuss how anticompetitive market distortions affect local domestic economies on CFR's State and Local Officials web portal>>

Rising Prices at the Pump

According to this CFR Backgrounder on gasoline prices, "continued political unrest in the Middle East, a recovering global economy, and revived demand in emerging markets have all contributed to rising oil prices" at home and abroad. To learn more about current oil supply and demand, the rising price of gasoline, and why U. S. policymakers are divided over the course of action, click here »

The Fiscal Cliff: What You Need to Know

In this CFR video, Peter Orszag, adjunct senior fellow at CFR and vice chairman of Corporate and Investment Banking at Citigroup, Inc., reviews opportunities and limitations to handling the fiscal cliff. Speculating on a deal between Democrats and Republicans, Orszag predicts there will be no significant additional government investments in infrastructure. Additionally, he believes that medium, but not long-term, deficit reductions will be included.

Watch the video>>

Wal-Mart's CEO on the "Responsibility to Lead"

Speaking at the Council on Foreign Relations New York headquarters, Mike Duke, president and chief executive officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., discusses the role of business in sustainability, women's economic empowerment, food security, and the development of a global middle class. To hear more about Wal-Mart's priorities and the direction the company is headed, listen to the audio »



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The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) is an independent, nonpartisan membership organization, think tank, and publisher dedicated to being a resource for its members, government officials, business executives, journalists, educators and students, civic and religious leaders, and other interested citizens in order to help them better understand the world and the foreign policy choices facing the United States and other countries. Founded in 1921, CFR takes no institutional positions on matters of policy.

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The CFR State and Local Officials Initiative seeks to serve as a resource and forum for bipartisan discussion on pressing international issues that affect the priorities and agendas of state and local governments, including the economy, trade and competitiveness, homeland security, public health, immigration, and energy supply and climate policy. For more information, please contact Amy Cunningham, assistant director for the National Program & Outreach, at 212.434.9848 or

About the State and Local Officials Portal on

CFR's State and Local Officials Portal,, is a resource and forum for discussion on international issues of local importance. This webpage serves as a guide to CFR's best materials on the topics that matter most to state and local officials and their constituents. In addition to a wide range of CFR materials—including work from the think tank, interviews with experts, meeting transcripts, and new backgrounders—users will find analysis and documents from other sources that have been carefully selected by the website's editorial staff for their relevance and quality.


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