Obama no longer has the luxury of non-engagement in the Middle East. Without firm and decisive action to reignite a meaningful peace process and to push for a swift deal, the two-state option may disappear forever, leaving Israelis and Palestinians alike facing a future of endless conflict.
The new Obama cabinet should focus on promoting improved migration policies in the countries forecasted to age most. Such policies would help these countries, which are now our major economic partners, to promote stability and growth in a way that's sustainable long into the future.
John Kerry is not the first losing Democratic presidential nominee to be nominated as Secretary of State. William Jennings Bryan, who was the Democratic Party's standard-bearer in three elections, became Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson.
From WJZ-TV in Baltimore where she became fast friends with work colleague Oprah Winfrey to the CBS Morning News to anchoring, producing and reporting for NBC News, Maria proved herself again and again as someone who works hard and with a conscience. And why not?
Israel, Iran, and gay rights are being evoked here as hot button issues that can be used to whip constituents up into a frenzy -- politics before policy, as usual.
In Chuck Hagel and John Kerry, President Obama is bringing aboard one man who opposed the surge in Afghanistan, and has long called for a drawdown, and another who quickly realized the surge was not a success, and called for a shift in strategy.
Why did President Barack Obama choose a big battle with Republicans over Chuck Hagel rather than Susan Rice? Obama himself, of course, has not said. He never said that UN Ambassador Rice was his first choice for secretary of state.
Kerry and Hagel's appointments come at a time when China's political transition offers Washington a window of opportunity to improve relations with Beijing. Both nominees support greater U.S. cooperation with China and favor a diplomatic resolution of conflicts.
President Obama's selection of John Kerry as the next secretary of state sends the wrong signal to America's allies and adversaries alike.
Yes, Mrs. Clinton will be followed, not replaced. And in this, John Kerry's nomination is an inspired continuation of ongoing work, and because of his unique "truth to power" style, the policy distortion that sees solely the arrows in the eagle's talons can be freshly addressed.
With everything from Syria to Iran to North Korea changing at light speed, we need a diplomat who will be equally, if not more tenacious than Hilary Clinton. Kerry has been tried and tested in this too.
Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense would bring immense confidence in the capitals of America's allies around the world, and great enthusiasm from veterans and military families throughout America who know him well, and trust him greatly.
John Kerry as secretary of state would help Obama lead -- as a powerful voice for America on the world stage, a visionary leader who understands how to deal with complex challenges and a staunch friend of close allies like Israel.
If these two men are nominated and confirmed, this doesn't mean President Obama will elevate Cuba as a foreign policy priority. But it does mean that seasoned figures who urged the country to dump its Cold War baggage and normalize relations would be at the table.
What's most damning to Scott Brown's future prospects isn't the margin of his defeat. It's the campaign he ran and the issues he stood for.
The smart move for Brown, and the right move, would be to announce that he would not run for the open seat if Kerry is named to the Cabinet.