If the current budget standoff on Capitol Hill leads to a shutdown of the federal government on Friday, recipients of the Medicare and Medicaid health programs won't have to worry. At least not for a while.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates spent a few hours in Riyadh on Wednesday, to thaw deeply damaged relations Gates is the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Saudi Arabia since the wave of uprisings began in the Arab world.
Those uprisings have sparked tensions in U.S.-Saudi relations. In a rare open disagreement with the Obama administration, King Abdullah chastised the president for abandoning Egypt's former President Hosni Mubarak, a longtime ally.
The Saudis have since developed a more aggressive regional policy.
Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi appealed directly to President Obama on Wednesday to halt what the Libyan leader called "an unjust war" and wished Obama good luck in his bid for re-election next year.
In a rambling, three-page letter to Obama obtained by The Associated Press, Gadhafi implored Obama to stop the NATO-led air campaign, which he called an "unjust war against a small people of a developing country."