Tuesday's global agenda: Romney wraps it up

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James Cunningham, nominated to serve as ambassador to Afghanistan, has been serving at the embassy in Kabul since last June and is currently the deputy ambassador. He will replace Ryan Crocker, who is stepping down after serving just one year, citing health reasons.

In neighboring Pakistan, Richard Olson has been tapped to replace Cameron Munter, who also resigned after less than two years on the job. Olson is currently the coordinating director for development and economic affairs at the embassy in Kabul.

Troubled trade: In the afternoon, the committee's western hemisphere panel holds a hearing on “Doing Business in Latin America: Positive Trends but Serious Challenges.” Matthew Rooney, the deputy assistant secretary of State for Economic Affairs in the Western Hemisphere, and Francisco Sanchez, the undersecretary for International Trade at the Department of Commerce, are scheduled to testify.

Terror threat: The State Department releases its annual country reports on terrorism Tuesday afternoon. The Bureau of Counterterrorism’s Ambassador at Large, Daniel Benjamin, will provide remarks and respond to questions.

I spy: The House is expected to easily pass House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith's (R-Texas) Foreign and Economic Espionage Penalty Enhancement Act of 2012 (H.R. 6029) under suspension of the rules. The bill would increase the maximum penalties, including fines, for revealing trade secrets to foreign entities and would direct the United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) to review and, if necessary, amend sentencing guidelines for economic espionage.

In other news

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta urged caution and said sanctions against Iran are working ahead of his trip to Israel for talks about the Islamic Republic's alleged nuclear weapons program. [The Wall Street Journal]

Bashar Assad is losing his grip on rural Syria. [The Washington Post]

New boldness by the Haqqani Network poses a risk to U.S.-Pakistani relations. [The New York Times]

What you might have missed on Global Affairs:

Lech Walesa all but endorses Mitt Romney during meeting in Poland

Clinton slams House GOP letter suggesting aide has Islamist ties

Border security with Canada under review


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