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Highlights from CFR

January 11, 2013


Public Apathy About Afghanistan Poses A Major Challenge

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

Talks between President Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai focused on the number of U.S. troops that will remain in Afghanistan after 2014. For Americans who believe in continued U.S. engagement, the most daunting challenge is U.S. public apathy. Read the Op-Ed »

Impasse on Debt Weakens America’s International Role

Richard N. Haass

The inability of the American political system to deal with the structural challenge of growing indebtedness dilutes the appeal of the nation's political and economic model. This wide-ranging interview also addresses the potential U.S. role in the Syrian civil war and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, President Obama's nominations of Chuck Hagel and John Kerry, and other pressing issues. Read the Interview »


Hagel on the U.S. War in Afghanistan

In a 2004 CFR meeting, President Obama's nominee for secretary of defense discussed his time in the army, and how Afghanistan's fragility threatened progress made by the United States. Watch the Video »

What Brennan's Nomination Means

Micah Zenko

John Brennan, Obama's nominee to head the CIA, played a major role in expanding the use of targeted killings in non-battlefield settings. The nomination could antagonize human rights advocates who opposed Brennan when his name was leaked as a candidate for the same post in 2008. Read More on Politics, Power and Preventive Action »

Brennan Discusses U.S. Counterterrorism Efforts

In this 2012 CFR meeting, John Brennan discusses the United States' counterterrorism partnership with Yemen, as well as targeted killings and drones. Watch the Video »


Reforming U.S. Drone Strike Policies

Micah Zenko

Drone strikes undermine U.S. foreign policy objectives and have potentially resulted in the loss of hundreds of innocent civilian lives. The use of drones requires greater transparency and oversight from the Obama administration, Congress, and the international community. Read the Report »

Violence Against Women in India: Three Things to Know

Isobel Coleman

A brutal gang rape has triggered outrage across India. This video highlights the country's struggles with systemic gender inequality, its poor response to violence against women, and widespread tolerance of injustice against women and girls. Watch the Video »

Chavismo After Chavez

Javier Corrales

The Venezuelan government's unwillingness to accept that Hugo Ch├ívez probably cannot be inaugurated because of his health problems has produced emotional and political confusion. Divisions within his own party make it unclear who will succeed him, but whoever take the reins will be tasked with living up to a complex, formidable legacy. Read More on »


An Audio Preview of The World Next Week

James M. Lindsay and Robert McMahon

CFR's James M. Lindsay and Robert McMahon discuss the future U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan; the resumption of peace talks between the Colombian government and the FARC rebels next week in Havana; and the start of the North American International Auto Show. Listen to the Podcast »

The Middle East in 2013: More of the Same

Steven A. Cook

The defining aspects of Arab politics in 2012 will likely continue in 2013, including the demands for democratic government, economic opportunity, and battle over who defines political and social institutions. Read More on From the Potomac to the Euphrates »

Difficult Times Ahead for Iraq

Meghan L. O'Sullivan

Iraqi prime minister Nouri al-Maliki's government faces a number of political challenges in the coming year, including strong opposition from Sunnis, Kurds, and fellow Shiites. Read the Interview »

Drawing the Wrong Lessons from Argentina's Debt Mess

Robert Kahn

The new statutory sovereign debt restructuring mechanism for Argentina was an impractical and unnecessary idea in 2001, when it was first raised by the IMF, and it remains so today. It might settle Argentina's battle with holdout creditors, but could cause substantial stress on the sovereign funding market. Read More on Macro and Markets »

2013 Holds Promise for U.S.-Latin America Relations

Shannon K. O'Neil

U.S. policy toward Latin America is primed for change in 2013. Developments on both sides of the border are creating opportunities for revised policies on immigration, trade, and the drug war. Read More on Latin America's Moment »

Should the Fed Subsidize Bank Lending?

Benn Steil and Dinah Walker

Concern over whether Bank of England funds boosted credit availability suggest that the U.S. Federal Reserve should be cautious about adopting the BOE's Funding for Lending scheme. Read More on Geo-Graphics »


January 20: U.S. Presidential Inauguration
CFR Resources on: Presidential Transition »

View the Calendar »


CFR is seeking applicants for the 2013-2014 Edward R. Murrow Press Fellowship. The program enables a distinguished foreign correspondent or editor to engage in sustained writing, expand his or her intellectual and professional horizons, and participate in meetings at CFR's NY headquarters. The application deadline is March 1.

Mapping Violence in Nigeria

A new resource from CFR's Africa Program uses interactive maps and graphs to illustrate the scope of political violence in Nigeria. View the Nigeria Security Tracker


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