Center for Strategic Communication

Syria prepared to offer ceasefire in Aleppo before Geneva peace talks

The Guardian

Syria’s foreign minister said on Friday that his country was prepared to implement a ceasefire in the war-torn city of Aleppo and exchange detainees with the country’s opposition forces as confidence-building measures before a peace conference next week in Switzerland.

White House releases summary of six-month Iran nuclear plan

Roberta Rampton / Reuters

The White House on Thursday released a summary of the deal reached between six major world powers and Iran to curb its nuclear program, responding to calls from the U.S. Congress and other groups for more transparency about what the agreement entails.

Explosions hit Thai anti-government protest in Bangkok; 28 injured

Kocha Olarn / CNN

Two explosions rocked an anti-government protest in the Thai capital of Bangkok on Friday, wounding more than two dozen people, security and health officials said.

China slams ‘troublemaker’ Japan after Africa visit

Africa Review

China launched a scathing diplomatic attack against Japan on Wednesday, warning African nations of an impending “resurrection of Japanese militarism” and branding Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a “troublemaker”.

How the oil boom could change U.S. foreign policy

Brad Plumer / Washington Post

The United States is suddenly awash in crude oil. From 2008 to 2013, domestic oil production rose by 2.5 million barrels per day — the biggest five-year increase in the country’s history.

UN says lag in confronting climate woes will be costly

Justin Gillis / NY Times

Nations have so dragged their feet in battling climate change that the situation has grown critical and the risk of severe economic disruption is rising, according to a draft United Nations report.

Spain becomes first country to rely on wind as top energy source

Peter Moskowitz / Aljazeera

Spain is the first country in the world to draw a plurality of its power from wind energy for an entire year, according to new reports by the country’s energy regulator and wind energy advocacy group Spanish Wind Energy Association (AEE).

Giant US trade deal might weaken shark fin ban

Matt McGrath / BBC

The first steps to outlaw the practice were agreed at a meeting in Bangkok last March. But the leaked draft text of the new deal involving 12 Pacific countries has no binding commitment to curb finning.

Iran has $100 billion abroad, can draw $4.2 billion: U.S. official

Fredrik Dahl / Reuters

Iran has about $100 billion in foreign exchange assets around the world, of which it will be able to access $4.2 billion under last year’s nuclear agreement with six world powers, a senior U.S. administration official said on Friday.

West criticizes Kiev for anti-protest legislation

Maria Danilova / Associated Press

Ukrainian leaders came under fire from the West on Friday for passing sweeping anti-protest legislation amid demonstrations against the government that have rocked Kiev for nearly two months.

Upcoming Events

America’s Energy Choices for 2014

American Security Project

The way America uses and produces energy remains a hotly debated issue in Washington and around the country. We will discuss the various energy choices available to the United States currently and in the years to come.

Fusion Power and ITER

US House of Representatives

Sustainable and controlled fusion power has been a dream for the scientific community for decades. However, recent advances in research and technology have raised hopes that fusion could become a new source of electricity.

Defense Budget in 2014: A Conversation with Russell Rumbaugh

American Security Project

Since sequestration and passage of the new budget, the Defense Department has been adjusting to a reduced funding environment – and 2014 won’t be much different. The speaker will discuss the outlook for Pentagon spending in 2014.

On Our Flashpoint Blog

Congratulations to the Egyptian People on a Successful Constitutional Referendum
BGen Stephen A. Cheney USMC (Ret.)

Congratulations to the Egyptian people on a successful Constitutional referendum!  As I personally witnessed last month in Cairo, they are optimistic and embracing a new era for their democratic nation.  I look forward to seeing the official turnout numbers and the results.

5 Reasons Why More Sanctions Should Not be Imposed at This Time
Nathan Daniels

There is one thing that everyone wants: the successful dismantlement of Iran’s nuclear program. Here are 5 reasons why more sanctions should not be imposed right now.

PODCAST – Egypt, the Referendum and What’s Next
American Security Project

Today we are joined from Cairo by former Egyptian Senator and Civil Society leader Mona Makram Ebeid, and from DC. just back from his fact-finding visit to Egypt, BGen Stephen A. Cheney USMC (Ret.).

ASP in the News

Wallin in The Public Diplomat: US Public Diplomacy Priorities Podcast

Discussing his Top 10 US Public Diplomacy Priorities for 2014, Matthew Wallin spoke to The Public Diplomat’s Michael Ardaiolo and Guy Golan on the public diplomacy outlook for 2014.

ASP congratulates former Board Member Lael Brainard on her nomination to the Federal Reserve Board

Ms. Brainard was instrumental in getting ASP off to a running start early on and has followed her tenure here with a successful stint as Under Secretary for International Affairs at the Department of Treasury.

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