Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Short List - June 21, 2011

International
  • President Obama will announce his plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, in what many believe is the first step in unwinding wide-scale U.S. involvement in the country.

  • Syria's President Assad has reportedly granted a general amnesty for crimes committed up until yesterday. This is the second such amnesty since unrest started in that country and is seen as another way to quell the protests.

  • Violence continues in Sudan, as the government seeks to eradicate all rebel groups(NYT) in the central part of the country.  South Sudan's independence day is just a couple weeks away, but the specter of violence looms large.

  • The IMF has said that the lack of consensus between EU finance ministers and the ECB "threatens of overwhelm" the euro zone economies.  Matt Steinglass, writing for The Economist, considers what the euro crisis means through an American lens.
Domestic
  • Budget negotiations in Congress are intensifying, though after reading the article I don't think they are really any closer to a deal.  Also, many freshmen Republican House members don't think raising the debt ceiling is important.  Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has floated the idea of a stand alone, short-term debt ceiling increase if a grand bargain can't be reached.

  • The Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 in favor of Wal-mart in what was on of the largest sexual discrimination lawsuits in history.  The court ruled that the plantiffs had not demonstrated a unified policy of discrimination.

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