Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2011

Nicolas Sarkozy

True to his pre-election nickname Speedy, kinetic French President Nicolas Sarkozy occupied the global stage with the activist leadership that has become his trademark. Sarkozy succeeded in overcoming initial opposition to become the driving force behind a successful international intervention in Libya, teamed up with German Chancellor Angela Merkel to spearhead efforts to save the euro, ordered France's unexpected vote to make Palestine a full member of UNESCO and hosted the G-20's annual summit in Cannes at the same time Europe's debt crisis risked explosion. Sarkozy's biggest challenge awaits him in 2012, however, with an uphill re-election bid as he carries out painful austerity cuts in the face of plunging economic-growth forecasts.