Council on Foreign Relations The World This Week
Highlights From CFR

October 18, 2013

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

When's the Next Debt Ceiling Deadline?

Robert Kahn

When the debt limit hits could be important for both political and economic reasons, coming in the midst of primary campaigns for the 2014 midterm elections, and at the time of Fed's tapering decisions which are expected in March next year. Read more on Macro and Markets »

What Is Next for the U.S. After the Shutdown?

Richard N. Haass

The United States will not be able to maintain its role as a global leader if it continues to institutionalize fiscal uncertainty. The government has to return to the real challenges facing the country such as immigration reform and infrastructure modernization. Watch the interview »

Obamacare: Doomed From the Start

Kimberly J. Morgan

Obamacare is a typically American concoction: a complicated program jerry-rigged to appeal to people with little faith in government. The result is a self-fulfilling prophecy—a messy government system that only fuels deeper cynicism about the welfare state. Read more on ForeignAffairs.com »

FORTY YEARS AFTER THE OIL CRISIS

U.S. States’ Economic Gains and Vulnerabilities

Stephen P.A. Brown and Mine K. Yucel

Technological advances have contributed to the "shale revolution," driving tremendous gains in oil and natural gas production in the United States. However, the growing prominence of energy production can make states with small, undiversified economies more susceptible to an economic downturn during an energy price decline. Read the Energy Brief »

A Primer on Fracking

Hydraulic fracturing has unlocked huge reserves of shale gas and oil, transforming the energy outlook in the United States and the world. Read the Backgrounder »

How to Reap the Benefits of North America's Energy Boom

Shannon K. O'Neil

North America's energy boom has the potential to increase the level of cooperation between the United States, Canada, and Mexico, pending the Mexican government's ability to pass necessary reforms. Watch the video »

The Power Surge

Michael A. Levi

The United States can strengthen its economy, improve national security, and confront climate change if it intelligently embraces the historic gains in oil and gas production, a thriving renewable energy industry, and falling oil consumption.  Read the book »

 

The World Must Tell Iran: No More Half-Steps

Ray Takeyh

The United States and the other world powers gathered in Geneva this week to negotiate with Iran over its nuclear program are in a strong position, but will need to take a maximalist approach to diplomacy with Iran, as it is too late for more Iranian half-steps and half-measures. Read the op-ed »

A Reasonable Iran?

Fred Kaplan

Despite thirty-four years without relations between the United States and Iran, this week's Geneva negotiations over the fate of Iran's nuclear program hold the chances for potentially historic breakthroughs. Read the op-ed »

Egypt: Reductio Ad Absurdum

Steven A. Cook

Despite a roadmap for reconstituting an electoral political order, the goal in Egypt remains for one group to impose its political will on the other. Until opposing groups lose the mentality that they must pound one another into the ground, the ongoing crisis will not end well. Read more on From the Potomac to the Euphrates »

Nigerian Security Forces Are Out of Control

John Campbell

Amnesty International reports that more than 950 people were killed while in military custody in the first six months of 2013. This confirms the long-standing phenomenon of extra-judicial killings and human rights violations at the hands of police in Nigeria. Read more on Africa in Transition »

THE WORLD AHEAD

An Audio Preview of the World Next Week

James M. Lindsay and Robert McMahon

This week Lindsay and McMahon discuss the next steps for Congress after avoiding a debt default, Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh's visit to China, and the upcoming meeting of President Barack Obama and Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif in Washington. Listen to the podcast »

Politics and Indo-Pakistani Normalization

Daniel S. Markey

Indo-Pakistani relations have made small strides toward normalcy but face a period of steep challenges amid leadership changes throughout the region. Read the Expert Brief »

Arab Women's Tech Advantage

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

Although women in the Middle East continue to face obstacles in the corporate world, in Gulf states such as Oman and Qatar, girls' education has prepared women for technology jobs. Read the op-ed »

Submarines Alone Are Not Enough Nuclear Deterrent

Robert Spalding

The deterrent force must be survivable, affordable, flexible, visible, available and credible. The affordability of the triad of submarines, intercontinental ballistic missiles, and bombers is argument enough for keeping the entire unit. Read the op-ed »

Is the UN Security Council Still Relevant?

The UN Security Council is the premier global body for maintaining international peace and security, but it faces steady calls for reform to better meet twenty-first-century challenges. Read the Backgrounder »

Student Loans and U.S. Prosperity

Steven J. Markovich

Many economists see student loan programs as a sound financial investment in U.S. human capital and future economic prosperity, but questions remain as to the appropriate level of federal involvement. For most students, the potential economic payoff of a postsecondary education outweighs the costs, but many graduates are concerned about a weak job market and the consequences that lingering debt may have on their financial futures. Read the Backgrounder »

Ask CFR Experts: Question of the Week

Shreedhar K. Powar asks what impact growing Pakistan-China relations has on the United States and India. CFR's Daniel Markey says if future U.S.-China relations are cooperative, then Chinese involvement in Pakistan offers little to fear. Read the full answer and submit your question

WORLD EVENTS CALENDAR

October 23: President Obama to Meet with Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Washington, DC
CFR Resources on: Pakistan »

View the Calendar »

INSIDE CFR

At CFR's Washington office, Daniel Markey discussed his new book, No Exit from Pakistan.He assessed Pakistan's multifaceted society, critical junctures in U.S. policymaking, and Pakistan's role in the future of its region. Watch the event

Call for Applications: 2014–2015 Fellowship Programs

The Council on Foreign Relations is seeking applicants for four 2014–2015 fellowship programs. Program details, eligibility requirements, and application deadlines can be found online at www.cfr.org/fellowships.

 

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