Compounding Humanitarian Crises, a Global Leadership Vacuum

Workers inspect the rubble of a food storage warehouse destroyed by a Saudi-led airstrike in Sanaa, Yemen, Oct. 26, 2015 (AP photo by Hani Mohammed).
Workers inspect the rubble of a food storage warehouse destroyed by a Saudi-led airstrike in Sanaa, Yemen, Oct. 26, 2015 (AP photo by Hani Mohammed).
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Is it riskier to be an austere politician or a humane one? Since the global financial crisis broke in 2008, economic austerity has been the single biggest source of contention in global politics. Some leaders, like British Prime Minister David Cameron, have persuaded voters to accept big cuts to state spending. Others, such as outgoing Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, have lost power to rivals that offered less painful fiscal alternatives. Yet if politicians talk up “austerity” at their own peril, they may find that the “humane” label is becoming equally costly. In Europe in particular, governments are struggling with […]

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