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Which world leaders are out-of-office this holiday season?

Which world leaders are out-of-office this holiday season?

As anyone who's sent an email in the past, say, five days knows, 'tis the season for those mechanically polite "out-of-office" bounce-back emails. World leaders deserve time off too, so here's a look at the automatic replies that we got from a few of them...


Vladimir Putin – Hello, I'm currently out celebrating the 20th anniversary of the day I took control of Russia. Let's be serious though: I will never truly be "out of office." For non-urgent requests, contact Dmitry Medvedev. He's still Prime Minister. No, seriously. For urgent requests, you'll have to wait until I'm back in town.

Evo Morales – Gracias por su correo. Following a coup, I am now "out of office." For the moment, you can reach me in Mexico. For urgent requests, please contact my MAS party, which is planning to field some candidates who are not me in the upcoming election.

Donald Trump – Hello LOSERS, thank you. I am right now looking VERY STRONGLY at a nine iron. The RADICAL LEFT do-nothing Democrats may want me "out of office" but THEY will not SUCCEED. Sad!

Nicolas Maduro – Hola, it's actually me writing here. A year ago, some of you were sure you'd be getting an out of office reply from me before long. As it turns out, I'm still very much in office. My generals and I are looking forward to a prospero año nuevo indeed.

Kim Jong-un – Thanks for your note, you deranged and bloodthirsty foolish swine. I am currently out at a Workers Party offsite and I may follow that up with a missile-building exercise, but you will hear from me soon. If this is Xi or Putin, you know how to reach me lol.

Angela Merkel – Vielen dank für Ihre Nachricht. I have been in office for so long now I'm not even sure what being Out of Office will be like, but that could happen as soon as this year. Hopefully someone will take care of Europe -- I did my best. In the meantime you can reach me at angieunbound @ Muttimail dot com.

Mark Zuckerberg – Hi, I read your email before you even sent it. I'm not "in office" in the political sense, but I have more power than most people who are. Try to regulate me. Just. You. Try.

Khant Thaw Htoo is a young engineer who works in Eni's Sakura Tower office in the heart of Yangon. As an HSE engineer, he monitors the safety and environmental impact of onshore and offshore operations. He also looks out for his parents' well-being, in keeping with Myanmar's traditions.

Learn more about Khant in the final episode of the Faces of Eni series, which focuses on Eni's employees around the world.

On his first day as president, Joe Biden signed a remarkable series of executive orders. Boom! The US rejoins the Paris Climate Accord. Bang! The United States rejoins the World Health Organization. Pow! No more ban on immigration from many Muslim-majority countries. Biden's press secretary reminded reporters later in the day that all these orders merely begin complex processes that take time, but the impact is still dramatic.

If you lead a country allied with the US, or you're simply hoping for some specific commitment or clear and credible statement of purpose from the US government, you might feel a little dizzy today. The sight of an American president (Barack Obama) signing his name, of the next president (Donald Trump) erasing that name from the same legislation/bill, and then the following president (Biden) signing it back into law again will raise deep concerns over the long-term reliability of the world's still-most-powerful nation.

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Ian Bremmer discusses the World In (more than) 60 Seconds:

Biden's first scheduled call with a world leader will be with Canada's Justin Trudeau. What's going on with the Keystone Pipeline?

Well, Biden said that that's it. Executive order, one of the first is that he will stop any construction or development of the Keystone Pipeline. This is of course an oil pipeline that would allow further oil sands oil to come to the United States. The infrastructure is significantly overstretched, it's led to backlogs, inefficiency, accidents, all the rest, but it also facilitates more energy development and keeps prices comparatively down if you get it done. So, there are lots of reasons why the energy sector in Canada wants it. Having said all of that, Trudeau, even though he's been a supporter of Keystone XL, let's keep in mind that he did not win support in Alberta, which is where the big energy patch in Canada is located. This is a real problem for the government of Alberta, Canada is a very decentralized federal government, even more so than the United States. The premier of Alberta is immensely unhappy with Biden right now, they've taken a $1.5 billion equity stake in the project. I expect there will actually be litigation against the United States by the government of Alberta. But Trudeau is quite happy with Biden, his relationship was Trump was always walking on eggshells. The USMCA in negotiations ultimately successful but were very challenging for the Canadians, so too with the way Trump engaged in relations on China. All of this, the fact that Trump left the nuclear agreement with Iran, the Paris Climate Accords, WHO, all of that is stuff that Trudeau strongly opposed. He's going to be much more comfortable with this relationship. He's delighted that the first call from Biden is to him. And it certainly creates a level of normalcy in the US-Canada relationship that is very much appreciated by our neighbors to the North.

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The GZERO World Podcast with Ian Bremmer. Listen now.

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