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NEWSWEEK: International Editions: Highlights and Exclusives, Dec. 31, 2007- Jan. 7, 2008

COVER: What's Next: China (All overseas editions). Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria writes that China's ascension to a global superpower is no longer a forecast but a reality. Three decades after its emergence from Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution, China has grown from one of the world's poorest countries to the second most important country on the planet. A team of correspondents and guest columnists share their thoughts on China and its new place as a superpower.

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Mao to Now. Beijing Bureau Chief Melinda Liu writes about the vast changes she has witnessed since 1979. Starting with the Gang of Four trial, she has seen China's slow emergence from the wreckage of the Mao years, the horrific bloodletting at Tiananmen Square, the rise of nationalist sentiment and handover of Hong Kong, and Beijing's gradual attempts to integrate itself into the world. Liu also shares the story of how her family became separated from her brother Guangyuan in 1949 and was reunited 30 years later.

Olympian Ambitions. Sports Editor Mark Starr writes that although China has been gearing up for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and has high hopes of knocking the United States off its Olympic perch, there is far more at stake in Beijing than athletic supremacy. The Games are its chance to "sell the world on a more benevolent vision of China."

Where a Future President Learned About the World. Newsweek excerpts the upcoming book "The China Diary of George H.W. Bush," in which the former president chronicled his experience in Mao's China between October 1974 and December 1975. During his trip, Bush wrestled with a tough, impenetrable Communist regime; a populace that was alternately warm and xenophobic; and the repercussions of the American defeat in Southeast Asia. The experience began to clarify his views on the workings of the international system -- and, more important, America's place within it.

A Race We Can All Win. New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg contributes a column in which he writes, "Just as a growing American economy is good for China, a growing Chinese economy is good for America. That means we have a stake in working together to solve common problems, rather than trying to browbeat or intimidate the other into action. And it means we should seize on opportunities to learn from one another."

NATIONS TO WATCH: The End of The Affair. Africa Bureau Chief Scott Johnson reports that like a number of emerging markets, South Africa's made great progress in recent years-but its leadership is faltering dangerously. And many South Africans have started to feel that their country is gradually tilting in the wrong direction.

The Free-Spending Lula. Special Correspondent Mac Margolis reports that Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is still wildly popular, but some troubling signs are emerging. Gone are the fiscal conservatives and champions of lean government who once had his ear. Enter the "developmentalists" who clamor for a stronger bureaucracy and greater state intervention into the market.

NEXT 2008: Newsweek looks at the big ideas and bright stars that will together shape and define the year ahead.

-- Xi Jinping, recently anointed the likely successor to Chinese President

Hu Jintao as party chief in 2012. He is popular within the party and

viewed as market-friendly and prudent.

-- YouTube and its political director Steve Grove are shaping coverage of

the 2008 presidential campaign in ways unimagined in 2006.

-- The European Union. The U.S. presidential election may lead to an

overhaul of U.S. foreign policy and Europe may have the opportunity to

shape American policy for the next generation.

-- Bertrand Delanoe, Paris' mayor, turned a place derided as a "museum"

into the world's suggestion box for popular festivals and has become

one of France's most popular politicians.

-- David Miliband, Great Britain's secretary of State for Foreign and

Commonwealth Affairs and possible future prime minister.

-- General Motors Vice Chairman Bob Lutz has become the unlikely champion

of the Chevy Volt, a 150mpg plug-in electric car that GM is fast-

tracking for production in 2010.

-- Immigration. As the immigration debate heats up the campaign trail, we

should be asking broader questions about assimilation and ensuring that

people, once outsiders, don't forever remain marginalized.

-- Sovereign Wealth Funds. Economists estimate that SWFs collectively held

about $2.5 trillion in assets last summer, making them larger than the

hedge-fund industry and some are starting to act like private-equity

funds, amassing big stakes in blue chips and buying entire companies.

-- Videogame development company Harmonix invigorated the music-videogame

category with Guitar Hero I and II, and reinvented the genre with their

latest game, Rock Band.

-- Adaptation to climate change. Since it is too late to stop global

warming, people will have to find ways to adapt to the rapid climate

changes in order to survive.

-- The Sanger Institute's Tim Hubbard is leading an international team

that will probe deeper than ever before into the mysteries of the human


-- Amy Adams, Oscar nominee for her role in 2005's "Junebug" and star of

Disney's "Enchanted."

-- Future Los Angeles Philharmonic music director Gustavo Dudamel.

TRANSITION: Noted in Passing. Newsweek looks back at the significant figures who died this year including former U.N. secretary-general Kurt Waldheim, classical mime Marcel Marceau, fashion icon Liz Claiborne and opera great Luciano Pavarotti.

WORLD VIEW: Goodbye to Global Free Trade. The post-World War II economic order took free trade as its ideal. But now mercantilism is making a comeback, as governments try to manipulate markets to their advantage, writes Contributing Editor Robert J. Samuelson. "It's a significant and ominous development affecting the world economy," he writes. "Even as countries become more economically interdependent, they're also growing more nationalistic. They're adopting policies to advance their own economic and political interests at other countries' expense."

THE LAST WORD: Tony Blair, former British prime minister. Tony Blair, the new representative of the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations to the Palestinians, told Jerusalem Bureau Chief Kevin Peraino that what's most important to Palestinians is that they "have someone who can deal with the Americans and the Israelis." "I find that the ordinary Palestinian is so desperate to get his situation improved that it's an advantage that you've got somebody who can actually liaise with the Israelis and the Americans," he says.

SOURCE Newsweek
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