Return to   |   Subscribe to the The World This Week

Council on Foreign Relations The World This Week
Highlights from CFR

January 18, 2013


Khar: Drone Strikes Fuel al-Qaeda and Taliban Recruitment

Hina Rabbani Khar

In a meeting at CFR, Pakistan's foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar discussed U.S.-Pakistan relations, Afghanistan, and how "U.S. counterterrorism efforts have fed extremist ideology in the region." Watch the Video »

French Enter Mali, But How Will it End?

John Campbell

French military intervention in Mali to halt the southern march of Islamist forces has gone well thus far. While this may bring temporary stability, it fails to address the roots of the conflict: a detached and discredited government in Bamako, an alienated north, and a fierce popular anger. Read More on Africa in Transition »


Stalemate Looms

Stephen D. Biddle

With President Barack Obama recently signaling that the goals of setting back al-Qaeda have largely been met, the United States will not be keeping large numbers of forces in Afghanistan for much longer. Now it is crucial for all parties to be involved in negotiations and for the process to proceed slowly enough "to avoid having the country split." Read the Interview »

No Victory Without U.S. Troops

Max Boot

Obama is well within his rights to decide that the cost of victory in Afghanistan is too high, but he should not claim we have already won a war that shows no sign of ending any time soon. Read the Op-Ed »

Timeline of the War

The attacks of September 11, 2001 prompted swift action by U.S. forces. This timeline examines the events and trends that precipitated U.S. military engagement and the history of the war. View the Timeline »


Why a Short Term Debt-Extension Might Work

Robert Kahn

A short-term debt limit extension, followed by a government shutdown in March, could yield an agreement in April. Read More on Macro and Markets »

Derailing Democracy in Islamabad

Aqil Shah

Pakistan is fending off a "needless political crisis" prompted by Tahir ul Qadri, a pro-military cleric who is trying to remove the government led by the Pakistan Peoples Party. There is, as yet, no smoking gun linking Qadri to the Pakistani military or judiciary, but their meddling would not be surprising, given past precedents. Read More on »

Washington: Out of the Game in Caracas

Julia E. Sweig

The United States has been a marginal actor in the crisis in Venezuela that was sparked by Chavez's illness, taking a back seat to Cuba, Brazil, and Argentina. Washington should figure out how to find a "place at Latin America's new diplomatic table." Read the Op-Ed »


An Audio Preview of the World Next Week

James M. Lindsay and Robert McMahon

CFR's James M. Lindsay and Robert McMahon discuss Obama's second term swearing-in ceremony; Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to ASEAN nations; and Israel and Jordan's upcoming elections. Listen to the Podcast »

Israeli Elections Offer Two Paths

Robert M. Danin

Just days away from parliamentary elections, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is widely expected to form a new government, but what that coalition will look like is unclear. Read the Interview »

China: Dirty Air, Dirtier Water?

Elizabeth C. Economy

Reporters focusing on China's shocking levels of air pollution have overlooked the country's alarming levels of water pollution. It is responsible for 60,000 premature deaths annually. There are few plausible long-term solutions. Read More on Asia Unbound »

Argentina's New Economic Populism

Shannon K. O'Neil

Argentina is known for its populist leaders and spectacular economic booms and busts. The economic data of the last fifty years show that, surprisingly, successive governments have enacted fiscal policies that increased spending during downturns and slowed it during times of growth. Read More on Latin America's Moment »

San Francisco's Pension Reform Precedent

Facing public pension costs projected at $532 million in 2014, San Francisco's mayor Ed Lee successfully lowered costs by fostering extensive negotiations between the city, its private sector, and labor unions, and building a "consensus initiative." Read More on Renewing America »

Meeting Rwanda's Employment Gap

Lisa Martilotta

Officials in East Africa's private sector regularly complain of a poorly trained workforce, yet they rarely collaborate with educational and training institutes. The Akilah Institute for Women aims to bridge this gap by linking college education to employment opportunities for young women in Rwanda. Read More on the Development Channel »


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

January 22: General Election, Israel
CFR Resources on: Israel »

January 23: Parliamentary Election, Jordan
CFR Resources on: Jordan »

January 25 - 29: World Economic Forum Annual Conference, Davos
CFR Resources on: International Finance »

View the Calendar »


This week, Max Boot, CFR's Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Senior Fellow for National Security Studies, released his new book, Invisible Armies: An Epic History of Guerilla Warfare From Ancient Times to the Present, which tells the story of guerrilla warfare from its origins in the prehistoric world to contemporary conflicts.

Win an iPad From Foreign Affairs

To celebrate the launch of their new iPad app, Foreign Affairs is giving away two 16GB iPads. Visit for more information and to enter the sweepstakes.


Connect with CFR

cfr on facebook Facebook
cfr on twitter Twitter
cfr on youtube YouTube
cfr on youtube Mobile
cfr on youtube Join the conversation at»