With the 'fiscal cliff' unresolved and other big issues still on the table, President Obama didn't need a confirmation battle. Realistically, Susan Rice had little choice but to take her name out of the mix.
Both rebel leadership and the United States urged the Russian government to help push Syria's President Bashar al-Assad into ceding power and end the battles closing in around his capital.
Despite their sacrifices during the Arab revolutions, Arab women are glaringly absent from the new parliaments, constitutional drafting committees, and cabinet appointments – especially in Egypt. But democracy, like revolution, is unsustainable in the Middle East without the inclusion of women.