International News Coverage
Middle East, Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Brian Murphy / The Washington Post
The diplomatic exodus from crisis-wracked Yemen expanded Friday with Saudi Arabia joining Western nations in closing embassy operations as rebel factions cement control in the capital and al-Qaeda fighters make gains elsewhere.
Saif Hameed, Stephen Kalin, David Alexander / Reuters
Iraqi security forces on Friday repelled an attack by Islamic State insurgents against an air base in Anbar province where U.S. Marines are training Iraqi troops, Iraqi and U.S. military officials said.
The Associated Press
Fierce fighting surged Friday in eastern Ukraine as Russian-backed separatists mounted a major, sustained offensive to capture a strategic railway hub ahead of a weekend cease-fire deadline. At least 25 people were killed across the region, officials reported.
Paul Hannon, Stacy Meichtry / The Wall Street Journal
A strong pickup in Germany helped boost eurozone economic growth in the final three months of 2014, but large parts of the euro currency area were either close to stagnation or still contracting.
Gabriel Sanchez, Max Avdeev, Max Seddon / Buzzfeed
A year ago, the international airport in Donetsk was the city’s pride and joy, extensively renovated for when the eastern Ukrainian city hosted Euro 2012 soccer tournament matches and named for composer Sergei Prokofiev, the city’s favorite son. Now it lies in ruins.
Tom Risen / U.S. News & World Report
President Barack Obama is taking his pitch for greater cooperation in fighting online threats to a skeptical crowd in the heart of the nation’s tech sector Friday, hosting the White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection at Stanford University.
Nigerian Boko Haram militants have carried out an attack on Chad overnight, the first such assault on Chadian soil, officials say. Fighters crossed Lake Chad in four motorboats and attacked a village, an army spokesman told the BBC.
Joe Brock / Reuters
“State of Chaos”, was how one South African newspaper described the images of police and politicians trading blows at the opening of parliament, a damning assessment of the country’s democracy twenty years after apartheid.
Aung Hla Tun, Ben Blanchard / Reuters
Forty-seven Myanmar soldiers have been killed this week in fighting with ethnic minority insurgents near the border with China, the military said in a statement issued on Friday.
An attack on a Shia mosque in Peshawar has killed at least 19 people and injured more than 50 others, hospital sources said. At least four suicide bombers, wearing the uniforms of security forces, hit the Imamia mosque during Friday prayers, according to officials.
Energy Security, Science and Technology, Climate Change
David Stanway, Kathy Chen / Reuters
China needs to slash emission levels by as much as half before any obvious improvements are made to its environment, a senior government official said on Friday, underscoring the challenges facing the country after three decades of breakneck growth.
Alister Doyle / Reuters
Almost 200 countries agreed a draft text for a deal to fight climate change on Friday, but put off hard choices about narrowing down a vast range of options for limiting a damaging rise in temperatures.
Laura Barron-Lopez / The Hill
Congressional Republicans plan to hold back legislation approving the Keystone XL pipeline to prevent President Obama from vetoing it while lawmakers are away from Washington. While Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) staged a signing ceremony for the bill on Friday morning, the legislation will not be sent to the White House until after next week’s Presidents Day recess, according to a top Republican aid.
On Our Flashpoint Blog
Recently there has been a large push among universities to divest their endowments away from fossil fuels, and this is based upon a false assumption that divestment is an effective tool for reducing emissions. Divestment alone does not actually produce any emission reductions though, since it ignores basic functions of the market.
According to the Department of Energy’s Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP), energy used by the US Department of Defense fell to its lowest recorded level since fiscal year 1975 (FY 1975). DoD energy use fell to .75 quadrillion British thermal units (BTUs) in FY 2013, the lowest levels on record.
Today, national security leaders submitted a letter to Congress to impress the importance of reauthorizing the Export Import Bank (often referred to as Ex-Im). The bank furthers international trade and enhances American national security.
At this year’s Munich Security Conference, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius took the opportunity to stress the need to recognize climate change as a security issue. Fabius strongly emphasized the need for global cooperation, asserting that there should be a “universal” agreement arising from COP21. Fabius also pointed out that as a global community we are already experiencing the effects of climate change, and must address the need for adaptation to minimize the security impact.
American Security Project
“For the sake of our national security, public health and environment, the stakes are too high for Washington’s partisanship to stand in the way of tackling climate change. This is why I was troubled that some members of the Senate Committee used today’s hearing to push a blatantly political agenda by attacking the EPA’s climate action plan. As I wrote in the New York Times with my Republican colleagues William Ruckelshaus, Lee Thomas, and William Reilly, “When confronted by a problem, deal with it.”
TPA will give the administration more leeway to successfully conclude negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) as well as TTIP. Advancing the trade agenda, as the document outlines, “brings job to our shores, increases standards of living, strengthens our partners and allies, and promotes stability in critical regions.”
February 25 @ 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
On Thursday, February 12th, the American Security Project, a nonpartisan think-tank, will publish a report on effective measures to tackle climate change. It will highlight the ineffectiveness of divestment as a way to fight climate change and call for a campaign that instead focuses on effective measures to reduce emissions. The report will explore effective solutions that would actually reverse the effects of accelerating changes in our climate.
April 10 @ 10:00am – 11:00am
Join Governor Whitman at the World Affairs Council of Hilton Head Island as she discusses the important issue of climate change and its impact on clean, safe energy. She will recount her experience as governor as well as the Administrator of the EPA. Come join this exciting event.
ASP Recently Published
American Security Project
This report focuses on how effective fossil fuel divestment campaigns in the United States would be in combating the effects of global climate change, as well as explore various solutions that aim to mitigate and eventually reverse the effects of our current accelerating climate change.
American Security Project
The U.S. Department of State is hardly America’s sole player in the public diplomacy realm. For decades, the U.S. military has been at the forefront of America’s efforts to inform and influence public audiences abroad. Members of the United States Military are often the first Americans many foreign publics meet, and have a role in forging relationships and perceptions of America.
American Security Project
Yemen has entered a new phase of instability and uncertainty, as a conflict between the Houthis and the country’s government led by Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi eventually forced him and his cabinet to resign in January 2015. On January 25, Hadi then withdrew his resignation.