Today’s Headlines

August 25, 2011 By Melissa Silverman

Who’s In the News

Innovations to Save Moms and Babies (Dr. Rajiv Shah, Huffington Post)

Six hundred grant proposals recently poured into U.S. Agency for International Development from around the globe. Each had the potential to become the next breakthrough in maternal and infant health — the ultimate aspiration of an international partnership called Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge in Development with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada, the Government of Norway, and The World Bank.

Smart Power

Keys to a brighter future for Libya (Edward Djerejian, CNN)

The likely fall of Moammar Gadhafi’s regime poses critical challenges to the emerging new Libyan leadership, to the United States and to the international community, and has important political implications for the future of the Syrian regime. In the first instance, the Libyan National Transitional Council will have the primary responsibility for the restoration of law and order, a necessary condition for a viable political transition to a representative and inclusive political system and to economic development.

Lawmakers Largely Muted in Response to Events in Libya, Cool to Large Aid Package (Emily Cadei, CQ)

Congress, which grudgingly took a back seat to the Obama administration during the protracted conflict in Libya, appears content to remain on the sidelines as the campaign to oust dictator Muammar el-Qaddafi reaches a crescendo. As rebels stormed victoriously into Tripoli this week, members have largely been silent, leaving most of the immediate response — and credit-taking — on Libya to the White House and the international community.

Schools can play a big role in tackling Somalia’s crisis, say aid groups (Claire Provost, the Guardian)

Hundreds of thousands of Somali schoolchildren are expected to drop out or fail to return to classrooms in September, according to Unicef and a group of 13 other aid organisations, raising fears that the unfolding humanitarian crisis could have severe and potentially long-term effects on an already fragile education system weakened by decades of prolongued conflict and chronic underfunding.

Politics/Foreign Policy

How the World Failed Haiti (Janet Reitman, Rolling Stone)

American and international officials gave their plan for Haiti a simple and compelling name: Building Back Better, a term that came into vogue after the tsunami that struck Asia in 2004, and that has since become something of a mantra in the development world. In a radical shift away from traditional approaches to foreign aid, “building back better” attempts to go beyond simple relief and not only to rebuild shattered structures, but to restructure, in a sense, shattered societies.