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What We Are Reading

What We Are Reading

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Key Reads

Iran says it will commit to nuclear inspections if U.S. lifts sanctions
Carol Morello / The Washington Post
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Thursday that if Congress lifts sanctions against the country, Iran will commit firmly to allowing international inspections of its nuclear program.

Iran denies Trump claim that US destroyed Iranian drone
Amir Vahdat and David Rising / AP News
Iran said Friday it can provide images that disprove President Donald Trump’s statement that a U.S. warship destroyed an Iranian drone near the Persian Gulf after it threatened the ship.

 

American Competitiveness

China will ease policy further but saving big ammunition for potential shocks: sources
Kevin Yao / Reuters
China is keeping all its economic policy tools within reach as the trade war with the United States gets longer and costlier, but still sees more aggressive action like interest rate cuts as a last resort should the dispute get uglier, policy sources say.

 

Asymmetric Operations

Explosion outside Kabul University kills 8, wounds 33
Amir Shah and Kathy Gannon / AP News
A powerful bomb exploded outside the gates of Kabul University in the Afghan capital on Friday, killing at least eight people and wounding 33, according to police and health officials.

Trio sentenced to death for beheading backpackers in ISIS-inspired slayings
Jackie Salo / New York Post
Three jihadists were sentenced to death in Morocco for butchering two female Scandinavian backpackers in an ISIS-inspired execution.

 

Climate Security

More than 185 million people are under watches and warnings as the heat wave begins to reach peak temperatures
Madeline Holcombe and Dakin Andone / CNN
Peak temperatures from a potentially deadly heat wave are expected to begin Friday, and major US cities are taking special measures to prepare – with New York City declaring an emergency.

Trump’s USDA buried sweeping climate change response plan
Helena Bottemiller Evich / Politico
The Agriculture Department quashed the release of a sweeping plan on how to respond to climate change that was finalized in the early days of the Trump administration, according to a USDA employee with knowledge of the decision.

 

Energy Security

New York awards country’s largest offshore wind energy contracts
Miranda Green / The Hill
New York officials said Thursday that the state would award the largest offshore wind energy contracts in the country as the state ups its commitment to renewable energy.

German Clean-Energy Fund Expanding Into U.S. Solar Development
Brian Eckhouse / Bloomberg
Germany-based clean-energy fund Hep Kapitalverwaltung AG agreed to invest $50 million to $80 million annually in a partnership to develop small solar projects in the U.S.

 

National Security Strategy

Alarmed by Venezuela, U.S. Military Seeks to Sell Arms to Colombia
Lara Seligman / Foreign Policy
As Venezuela’s Russian-backed leader Nicholas Madura continues to cling to power, the U.S. military wants to prevent a crisis from spilling over into neighboring Colombia, an important ally, by beefing up its defenses.

Three dead as unrest rumbles in Ethiopia’s southern Hawassa city
Dawit Endeshaw / Reuters
At least three people have died in Ethiopia’s southern city of Hawassa, hospital authorities said on Friday, amid a showdown between state security forces and some local activists who want to declare a new region for their Sidama ethnic group.

Gibraltar extends detention of Iranian tanker for a month
Guy Faulconbridge / Reuters
Gibraltar was granted the power on Friday to detain Iran’s Grace 1 oil tanker for another month, keeping the vessel at the center of a big-power quarrel between Iran and the United States and its allies.

 

US-Russia Relationship

Russia may sell its own fighter jet to Turkey after U.S. cancels over missile sale and considers old rival
Tom O’Connor / Newsweek
Russia has offered to sell its own fighter jets to Turkey after the U.S. canceled a recent sale due to Ankara’s purchase of Moscow’s missile system and considered selling elsewhere.

 

Recently Published

Perspective – US Non-Strategic Nuclear Weapons in Europe
Ottavia Credi
This paper addresses the presence of American non-strategic nuclear weapons (NSNWs) in the European theater. It explores the role and purpose of these arms in order to determine their effectiveness as both a deterrent and as tools of non-proliferation.

Perspective – Russia’s Silent Epidemic: Diplomatic Opportunities for Addressing HIV/AIDS
HD Scriba, III
This report examines the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Russia, and the threat it poses to stability. Humanitarian efforts by the United States to help manage the epidemic may help thaw the U.S.-Russia Relationship.

Perspective – Maintaining America’s Edge: Overcoming Advanced Air Defenses
Matthew Wallin
The return to great power competition highlights a need for the United States to develop and invest in technologies capable of overcoming advanced air defense systems.

 

On Our Flashpoint Blog

ASP CEO Brigadier General Stephen Cheney on NPR
Rossella Cerulli
ASP CEO BGen Stephen A. Cheney appeared on Washington D.C.’s local NPR station, to speak about climate change and national security.

Leaving the Paris Agreement Abdicates US International Leadership – and Harms National Security
John Madeira
Leaving the Paris Agreement harms US national security by abdicating international leadership at a time when great power competition is the focus of US defense policy.

Russia’s Return to Africa
Rossella Cerulli
As Russia attempts to shape itself into African countries’ strategic partner both economically and militarily, the question of waning American influence looms large.

Plagued by Piracy: Are West African Waters Safe?
Cat Cronin
In 2018, West African waters were attacked by pirates in 112 incidents. Something needs to be done – and quickly – as piracy continues to threaten the shipping industry and local populations.

Russia’s Involvement in Far-Right European Politics
Rossella Cerulli
Russia’s support of the League party demonstrates the Kremlin’s goal of breaking European alliances by strengthening right-wing extremism.

The US and China Must Find a Way to Work Together
Andrew Holland
The fate of the global climate relies on the US and China working together. The first in a series on renewing US-China Climate Action.

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