Center for Strategic Communication

US Tones Down Demands That Russia Expel NSA Leaker

Lara Jakes / AP

Rebuffed by Russia’s president, the Obama administration toned down demands Tuesday that fugitive National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden be expelled from a Moscow airport in a sign that the U.S. believes he is not worth scuttling diplomatic relations between the former Cold War enemies.

Russia Reports Pullout from Small Base in Syria

Will Englund / The Washington Post

Russia has evacuated all military personnel from its small naval base in Syria, Russian news organizations reported Wednesday.

Immigration and the Labor Market

Eduardo Porter / The New York Times

Are American workers about to experience unwelcome new competition for their jobs? The bill moving through Congress to overhaul the nation’s immigration laws, if approved, would give employers access to expanded visa programs that would admit hundreds of thousands of immigrant workers, of both low and high skills, to toil in workplaces from strawberry fields to technology companies.

Obama Unveils Climate Change Strategy: End of Line for U.S. Coal Power?

Brian Handwerk / National Geographic

President Obama launched his climate change policy effort Tuesday in a speech that invoked Hurricane Sandy’s assault on New York, the drought’s devastation in the Midwest, and a recent heat wave in Alaska. “Americans are already paying the price of inaction,” he said. “Our planet is changing in ways that will have profound impacts on all humankind.”

Obama’s Goal in Africa: Counter China

Peter Bergen / CNN

There is a one-word subtext to President Obama’s trip to Africa: China.

With Snowden in Middle, U.S. and Russia Joust, and Cool Off

David M. Herszenhorn, Ellen Barry, and Peter Baker / The New York Times

President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia on Tuesday appeared to rule out sending Edward J. Snowden back to the United States to face espionage charges, leaving him in limbo even as Moscow and Washington seemed to be making an effort to prevent a cold-war-style standoff from escalating.

Supreme Court Will Hear Big Clean-Air Case

John Upton / Grist


It’s been a week of refreshing news for fans of unpolluted air. As Barack Obama on Tuesday was calling for greenhouse gas limits on power plants, clean air advocates were also celebrating a decision by the Supreme Court to hear an important case on power-plant pollution.

Why Cheaper Gasoline Could be Bad for America’s Economic Comeback

Christopher Helman / Forbes

Oil prices have fallen in the past week, with benchmark Brent crude down more than 5% to less than $100 a barrel on Monday morning. West Texas Intermediate is now trading at $93. With the market plunging and China on the cusp of a liquidity crisis, oil looks likely to continue its swoon. Is it too soon to see relief at the gasoline pump on the horizon? And would that even be a good thing?

On Our Flashpoint Blog

State Department’s Office of the Inspector General Critiques the Bureau of International Information Programs

Christian Mull

While most of OIG report focused on improving the management troubles that plague IIP, it also discussed some of the problems that are inherent in some of its digital “engagement” efforts.

Event Recap: Joel Wit and North Korean Satellite Imagery Analysis

Chris Smith

This afternoon, Joel Wit, of 38 North, gave a unique talk about North Korea’s current nuclear and missile programs and possible American responses to them utilizing satellite imagery.

President Obama Offers Some Heat on Climate Change and National Security

William Joyce

Climate change is a significant threat to US national security, and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions is an essential step in the right direction. While the administration’s new climate action plan does not lay out clear rules to combat climate change, it sets the stage for stronger regulation in the future.

This Week in Public Diplomacy June 24

Christian Mull

A round-up of public diplomacy-related news.

Upcoming Events

Restoring American Competitiveness: A National Security Crisis

Recent reports by the American Security Project and the Harvard Business School reveal that American competitiveness is slipping, posing a severe threat to our country’s national security. Join our panel of experts as they discuss these challenges and potential solutions to restore America to a position of global leadership in the 21st century.

The panel will take place Wednesday July 10th from 1:00-2:00 pm in Cannon House Office Building, Independence Ave and New Jersey Ave, SE, Room 122.

If you would like to attend, please email by July 8 to RSVP.

The Case for American Competitiveness: A Reception

ASP and the HBS Club of DC are proud to co-sponsor a reception for HBS professor Dr. Jan Rivkin, as well as prominent military leaders. This reception culminates the American Competitiveness Day to inform a bipartisan discourse on Capitol Hill. The reception will take place on WednesdayJuly 10th from 6:00-8:00 pm in the Alliance Bernstein Board Room, 800 Connecticut Ave, NW, Suite 1001.

Cost is $35 for members and $60 for non-members

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