Calling the G7

With the U.S. credit downgrade and looming recession, Timothy Geithner says he’s going to tough it out and stay through President Obama’s first term in office. The treasury secretary gave Obama the news Friday morning, shortly before he let the president know the U.S. was facing a downgrade. Yesterday, Geithner and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke had a conference call with the rest of the G7 to talk about Standard and Poor’s decisions to drop U.S. credit from a AAA rating to AA+. The group issued a statement expressing its very broad commitment “to addressing the tensions stemming from the current challenges on our fiscal deficits, debt and growth.”

President Obama also got news late Friday of the most deadly attack on U.S. forces since the start of the war in Afghanistan. Over thirty troops, including members of the now legendary SEAL Team 6, died when their Chinook helicopter was shot down by an insurgent with an RPG. White House National Security Adviser Tom Donilon gave the president the news a little after 8 pm on Friday night. Commander of Central Command Marine General James Mattis said that the “loss will only make the rest of us more determined, something that may be difficult for those who aren't in the military to understand.”

Chun Yung-woo, South Korea’s top security adviser, is reportedly going to be in the United States this week to meet with U.S. officials, like special envoy for North Korea Stephen Bosworth. The meetings are expected to focus on the six-party talks and Pyongyang’s nuclear disarmament. North Korea’s vice foreign minister was also just in the states.

And subscribers to Glamour will get an in-depth look at Hillary Clinton in their mailboxes this week. You can also read the secretary of state’s interview with the magazine on their website. She, like the rest of the administration, is getting a bit worn out. When asked what she is planning to do after she steps down as secretary of state, Clinton said, “I haven’t started thinking about that. I will probably rest up, because I’ve had 20 years with no break.” After only two and a half years, Clinton is the most traveled secretary of state yet.