North America 13 March 2012 US press: pick of the papers The ten must-read opinion pieces from today's US papers. Sign UpGet the New Statesman's Morning Call email. Sign-up 1. An alliance the world can count on (Washington Post) As two nations that support the human rights and dignity of all people, we continue to stand with those brave citizens across the Middle East and North Africa who are demanding their universal rights, write Barack Obama and David Cameron. 2. India's Democratic dividend (Wall Street Journal) (£) Last week's election results in five Indian states turned the conventional wisdom on its head. Voters, especially in India's most populous state of Uttar Pradesh, resoundingly favored parties that promised development. The elites are still in a state of shock, writes Barun Mitra. 3. Obama's pump debacle (LA Times) Obama desperately wants people to think he's against higher gas prices -- at least until he gets reelected, says Jonah Goldberg. 4. Why isn't Mitt Romney "likable enough"? (Politico) A candidate can attract or repulse in the same way a magnet can. Every time Romney tries to close the distance with voters and draw them closer, he seems invariably, to repulse them, writes J. Ann Selzer. 5. Afghanistan on edge (LA Times) With each further crisis like that set off by the soldier's actions Sunday, the U.S. loses standing in the eyes of its Afghan government "partners," not to mention the increasingly skeptical population at large, says this editorial. 6. The perils of retreat (Wall Street Journal) (£) Retreats are messy in warfare, and they can quickly become disorderly when the mission becomes something other than military victory, writes this editorial. 7. America's war on manufacturing (Philadelphia Inquirer) In the wake of calls for tax breaks and other measures to support manufacturing from President Obama and the leading Republican presidential candidates, there has been an outcry from economists against such industrial policy, writes Clyde Prestowitz. 8. The double-edged health care debate (Oregonian) It must be a bitter irony for the president that his greatest legislative achievement, a promise kept from his 2008 campaign, has become an albatross, writes Doyle McManus. 9. Obama goes to AIPAC (Plain Dealer) Obama indeed did parrot the line that all options would be on the table. And he chest-thumped by saying Iran should not doubt his resolve, but he also said that all the war talk has not helped, says Jennifer Rubin. 10. Obama's phony compromise on religious freedom (Washington Examiner) Obama had no intention of budging on the most critical issue -- whether the government or the church will decide how the church operates, writes this editorial. › Iran Watch: The myth behind Israel's attack on Osiraq Subscribe To stay on top of global affairs and enjoy even more international coverage subscribe for just £1 per month!