The podcast for The World Next Week is up. Bob McMahon and I talked about the upcoming G8 foreign ministers meeting in Paris, where the Libyan crisis will top the agenda; intensified violence in Cote d’Ivoire; the continued drama over the federal budget as the two-week stopgap spending bill will soon expire; and the new Irish prime minister’s work to solve Ireland’s fiscal woes.
- France and Great Britain are proposing to impose a “no-fly zone” over Libya, but Russia’s vow to veto the idea at the UN Security Council may kill the proposal before it gets off the ground.
- President Obama has condemned the increasing bloodshed in Cote d’Ivoire as “abhorrent,” but there are no signs that the United States or anyone else intends to intervene to stop the violence.
- Democrats and Republicans continue to bicker over the budget, but neither side looks eager to force a government shutdown—at least not yet.
- Enda Kenny, Ireland’s new Taoiseach (or prime minister), has his hands full trying to recapture the glory of Ireland’s days as a “Celtic Tiger.”
Bob and I aren’t the only commentators analyzing these issues. The upheaval in North Africa has the United States and its allies walking a diplomatic tightrope; Reuters reports on the White House’s defense of its response, and the Economist comments on the diplomatic drama that has unfolded in Paris over the past week. I have laid out the unappealing choices facing the Obama administration in an op-ed over at CNN.com. Closer to home, Bloomberg reports on the tension in the Republican caucus regarding the FY 2011 budget, and the New York Times discusses the failure of two budget proposals in the Senate yesterday. The Economist‘s “Baobab” blog discusses the economic crunch in Cote d’Ivoire and its human cost while CNN covers Obama’s announcement yesterday of aid for the country’s displaced. ABC News discusses Enda Kenny’s work as the newly-installed prime minister to improve the terms of Ireland’s bailout. Next Wednesday is St. Patrick’s Day, when everyone is an honorary citizen of the Emerald Isle. Erin go Bragh! (Or, if you are a purist, Éirinn go Brách!)