First Past the Post: October 18

Bolivian president Evo Morales says Europe and the United States are in a slump because they’re no longer pillaging Latin America. (The Great Stagnation!) [Spanish]

Somalia’s new parliament has elected former businessman Abdi Farah Shirdon as the new prime minister.

Foreign Policy looks at the death of Cambodia’s king.

Italian prime minister Mario Monti has passed an anti-graft law.

Georgia’s new top politician Bidzina Ivanishvili will continue to push for NATO membership.

Angola launches a sovereign wealth fund.

In his first salvo against German chancellor Angela Merkel, SPD chancellor candidate Peer Steinbrück is criticizing her for being insufficiently pro-Europe.

Le Figaro gives you the Merkel vs. François Hollande story in advance of the latest EU summit. [French]

Argentina’s La Nacion interviews former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva [Spanish]

What to make of Cuba’s lightening of travel restrictions?

Controversy over the first abortion clinic in Ireland and/or Northern Ireland, which opened this week in Belfast.

Der Speigel looks at the Chinese transition.

Former Lebananese prime minister Saad Hariri accuses Hezbollah of fighting on behalf of Syrian president Bashar Assad.

Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni, his successor as Kadima leader pledge not to run against one another in the January elections — if they run.

Is former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd plotting a comeback once again against current prime minister Julia Gillard?

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