Thursday, February 7, 2008

Ten World Leaders to Watch in 2008

Potential influence, not power, is the key factor in a list of top politicians picked by Eurasia Group

The U.S. Presidential campaign and the Beijing Olympics may be the big news stories of 2008, but the leaders to watch this year are from neither the U.S. nor China. At least, that's the opinion of the New York-based Eurasia Group, a consultancy specializing in geopolitical analysis and risk assessment.

Instead, Eurasia Group picks leaders from Iran, France, Russia, and Pakistan, who will be making decisions this year that could have powerful global implications. Iran's conflict with the West and Pakistan's internal turmoil could affect global security, while France's bold approaches to foreign and domestic policy and Russia's political transition will no doubt transform world affairs.

The challenges for the last six leaders on the list are primarily domestic in scope. But the countries involved—Indonesia, South Africa, Nigeria, Brazil, and Turkmenistan—are among the most influential developing countries in the world