Center for Strategic Communication

Asylum Options Narrow Further for Snowden

David Herszenhorn and Andrew Roth / The New York Times

Asylum options appeared to narrow further on Tuesday for Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor on the run from American authorities, as at least nine countries reacted unfavorably to his requests for sanctuary and the Kremlin said he had withdrawn his application to Russia.

Exclusive: Egypt army plan would scrap constitution, parliament – sources

Yasmine Saleh and Asma Alsharif / Reuters

Egypt’s armed forces would suspend the constitution and dissolve an Islamist-dominated parliament under a draft political roadmap to be pursued if Islamist President Mohamed Mursi and his opponents fail to reach a power-sharing agreement by Wednesday, military sources said.

U.S. will help electrify Africa, but will the energy be clean or dirty?

John Upton / Grist

The initiative calls for more than $7 billion in U.S. funding over five years to help build new power plants in six African countries and bring electricity to more than 20 million households and businesses.

Australian Factories Meet Carbon Deadline Ahead of Cap-and-Trade

Alessandro Vitelli / Bloomberg

Australian factories and power stations handed in carbon permits and offsets covering 212 million metric tons of greenhouse gases emitted in the past year as the nation prepares for a cap-and-trade program in 2015.

Nations to Designate Antarctic Marine Protected Areas?

Jane Lee / National Geographic

For over 50 years, international treaties have ensured that Antarctica (map) remained a place for peaceful activities and scientific study for all. That ethos of cooperation and conservation has largely carried over to today, with recent proposals for two marine protected areas (MPAs) in the ocean surrounding Antarctica.

Carbon from nuclear tests could help fight poachers

Melissa Hogenboom / BBC

The atmospheric carbon left over from nuclear bomb testing could help scientists track poached ivory, new research has found.

China launches new online portal for petitioners

Anonymous / BBC News

China has started a new online platform to accept petitions from its citizens. Officials say the website, which was launched by the State Bureau of Letters and Calls on Monday, will help “broaden the channels” for public opinion. However, some potential users expressed fears that the website would be used to expose petitioners.

Antarctic flood produces ‘ice crater’

Jonathan Amos / BBC News

Scientists have seen evidence for a colossal flood under Antarctica that drained six billion tonnes of water, quite possibly straight to the ocean.

On Our Flashpoint Blog

Against the Global Trend: Pakistan’s Reversal on Climate Change Policy

Evan Meltzer

In a country vulnerable to floods, cyclones, and drought, Pakistan is currently “bucking the trend” when it comes to combating global climate change, according to a recent Dawn newspaper article.

The Other Pivot to Asia: Rosneft Signs Major Oil Deal with China

Warren Dym

There is another pivot to Asia the U.S. should consider, and that is Russia’s. The faltering European economy and global impact of American shale gas—including Middle Eastern liquefied natural gas (LNG) once destined for the U.S. now heading to Europe, and the expectation of U.S. LNG exports there—are compelling Russia to reconsider its strategy for Europe and forge closer ties with China.

Senators Express Support for Fusion Power

William Joyce

Within the Senate markup of the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill on June 27, Senator Mary K. Landrieu of Louisiana and Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee spoke highly of fusion energy research. Amidst rampant budget cuts throughout all areas of the government, it is great to see several Senators like Alexander, Landrieu and Feinstein defending fusion energy’s role as a critical national interest.

Bare Bases on Foreign Lands – The First Step in Defense Efficiency?

Adin Dobkin

Depending on whom you ask, the United States currently maintains a force of nearly 300,000 troops stationed overseas. Although the majority of these troops are fighting in the war on terror, we also maintain 135,000 troops in full staffed bases in stable and friendly areas.

Energy Security for Europe: the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP)

Warren Dym

The partnership working the Shah Deniz gas play in the Caspian Sea announced its decision today for the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) to Italy. The TAP will be the last leg connecting Caspian gas to Europe over Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Albania, and Greece.

Kidnapping for Ransom too Lucrative for Terrorists

Ollie Engebretson

Kidnapping Western nationals for ransom has unlocked an alarming source of funds for terrorist organizations, and current counter-strategies don’t seem to offer an effective deterrent. According to David Cohen at the U.S. Treasury Department, terrorist organizations have accumulated over $120 million through kidnapping for ransom (KFR) between 2004 and 2012—a fairly enticing supply of cash for organizations that have increasingly turned to criminal networks and techniques to finance attacks.

Education: Key to American Competitiveness

Wes Reichart

The ability of American firms and workers to compete successfully in a globalized economy is directly dependent upon the quality of education our students receive. American Competitiveness is therefore linked with the success of the U.S. primary, secondary, and higher education systems. As the U.S. has declined in competitiveness rankings, both the American Security Project and Harvard Business School have cited education reform as a necessary step to enhance the ability of the U.S. to compete abroad.

ASP’s New York Event: “Redefining Energy Security in the 21st Century”

Andrew Holland

On Tuesday, June 25, members of the American Security Project’s Board and the Consensus for American Security spoke at event during New York Energy Week, entitled “Redefining Energy Security for the 21st Century.” The event was cosponsored by The Climate Group and PwC. Approximately 100 people attended. The event was hosted at PwC’s global headquarters at 42nd St and Madison Avenue in Manhattan.

ASP in the News

ASP Congratulates its Chairman Gary Hart on his appointment as the chair of the State Department’s International Security Advisory Board

The American Security Project congratulates it’s Chairman Gary Hart on his appointment as the chair of the State Department’s International Security Advisory Board (ISAB).

ASP’s Andrew Holland Featured in Ethanol Producer Magazine’s Article Discussing Renewable Fuels and National Security

Andrew Holland, Senior Fellow for Energy and Climate with the American Security Project, was recently quoted in a piece by Ethanol Producer Magazine about a survey conducted by Research Now that identifies American attitudes towards oil and renewable fuels as a response to high gas prices.

ASP’s Andrew Holland Quoted in The Detroit Bureau’s Article on Renewable Energy Options

Andrew Holland, Senior Fellow for Energy and Climate with the American Security Project, was recently quoted in a piece by The Detroit Bureau about American interest in renewable fuel options in response to recent gas price jumps.

The National Journal Discusses Joel Wit’s Speech on Satellite Images During Tuesday’s ASP Event

The National Journal discussed Joel Wit’s talk on Tuesday at the American Security Project, during which he spoke about digging seen in satellite photographs around North Korea’s Punggye-ri test site.

The Korea Herald Covers Joel Wit’s Satellite Imagery Analysis from Tuesday’s ASP Event

The Korea Herald mentioned the American Security Project’s event with Joel Wit, a former State Department satellite imagery analyst and expert on North Korea, in their recent article discussing the Unites States’ approach to combating North Korean nuclear capabilities.

AP Discusses Satellite Imagery Analysis that Joel Wit Covered in His Event at ASP on Tuesday

Joel Wit, a former State Department satellite imagery analyst and a highly regarded American expert on North Korea currently at 38 North, spoke on Tuesday at ASP on North Korea’s Nuclear and Missile programs and American policy responses to them.

38 North Discusses Joel Wit’s Satellite Imagery Analysis that He Covered in His Event at ASP on Tuesday

Joel Wit, a former State Department satellite imagery analyst and a highly regarded American expert on North Korea currently at 38 North, spoke on Tuesday at ASP about North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs and American policy responses to them.

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 Wednesday, July 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

Tickets can be purchased at