International News Coverage
Middle East, Terrorism and Counterterrorism
Louis Charbonneau | Haaretz
It is still possible to reach a nuclear deal with Iran, but new Congressional sanctions could seriously undermine prospects for an agreement and end up isolating Washington instead of Tehran, the U.S. envoy to the United Nations said on Monday.
Haruna Umar and Christopher Torchia| Associated Press
Survivors of an assault by Islamic militants that killed hundreds of civilians in Nigeria have described days of relentless violence in which, one witness said, some people were slaughtered “like insects.” The accounts were given by villagers who fled the carnage in and around Baga, a town in Borno state that lies in the northeastern corner of Nigeria near the border with Chad.
Lebanese security forces have raided a prison after an investigation found detainees were connected to a suicide attack over the weekend, officials say. Television pictures showed troops entering and searching inmates’ rooms and smoke rising from Roumieh prison. Interior Minister Nohad Machnouk said the prisoners had used mobile phones and internet video chat programme Skype to communicate with fellow militants. “I can confirm that Roumieh prison is an operations room for Da’ish,” he added, using a pejorative term for Islamic State based on an acronym formed from the letters of its name in Arabic.
Humeyra Pamuk/ Reuters
The suspected female accomplice of Islamist militants behind attacks in Paris was in Turkey five days before the killings and crossed into Syria on Jan. 8, Turkish officials said on Monday. France launched a search for 26-year-old Hayat Boumeddiene after police killed her partner Amedy Coulibaly while storming a Jewish supermarket where he had taken hostages. Authorities described her as armed and dangerous.
Joshua Partlow and Nick Miroff | The Washington Post
The “Cuban Embargo,” as it’s known in the United States, has failed for 54 years to push the Communist government from power. The U.S. economic sanctions have left Cuba neither fully isolated nor able to conduct completely normal business relations with other countries and foreign companies. Now, as President Obama plans to poke new holes in the patchwork of financial, commercial and travel restrictions first imposed by the Eisenhower administration, American businesses are eagerly awaiting new opportunities on the island.
William Neuman | The New York Times
Former President Alberto Fujimori on Thursday was convicted of using public money to influence newspaper coverage during his 2000 re-election campaign. Mr. Fujimori is already serving a 25-year sentence, handed down in 2009, for ordering the killings of 25 people during a war with leftist guerrillas.
Nick Miroff | The Washington Post
A commodity boom has helped pull millions out of poverty across South America over the past decade. It has also unleashed a new scramble for oil, minerals and cropland that is accelerating deforestation and fueling a new wave of land conflicts from Colombia to Chile.
Isabella Steger and Fiona Law/ Wall Street Journal
Masked assailants attacked the residence of the publisher of a prominent pro-democracy newspaper and its Hong Kong offices on Monday, the latest in a string of attacks against media mogul Jimmy Lai weeks after his arrest for his involvement in protests in the city. In two separate incidents early Monday, men threw gasoline bombs outside Next Media Ltd. headquarters in the Tseung Kwan O area.
Anna Fitfield | The Washington post
South Korean President Park Geun-hye held out something of an olive branch to North Korea on Monday, saying she was prepared to hold talks without preconditions with Kim Jong Un. The gesture, made during a news conference in Seoul, follows a similar statement by Kim. The leader of nuclear-armed North Korea had said he was open to a meeting with Park.
Energy Security, Science and Technology, Climate Change
Elise Viebeck | The Hill
President Obama will spend next week laying out new proposals to improve Americans’ cybersecurity, broaden access to the Internet and guard against identify theft, the White House said Saturday.
Kenneth Chang | The New York Times
An unmanned rocket carrying equipment and supplies for the International Space Station reached orbit on Saturday morning, but an audacious attempt to land the rocket’s first stage on a floating platform in the Atlantic Ocean was unsuccessful.
Aman Malik | International Business Times
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday indicated that climate change would likely top the agenda when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Barack Obama meet in New Delhi later this month. Obama will be the chief guest at India’s Republic Day ceremony on Jan. 26.
On Our Flashpoint Blog
How many repairs did your car require last year? The American Society of Civil Engineers estimated that each American driver spent roughly $324 on average ($67 billion nationally) on repairs due to poor road conditions.
As the prevalence of infectious diseases is likely to increase with rising temperatures, this will bring about a key change to the security environment and the threats that the U.S. will be dealing with in the future.
One would hope that the American consumer wouldn’t be so short-sighted as to base a major purchase – one that could affect their personal economic health for five years or more – on short term fluctuations in gas prices.
While not widely reported in the U.S. media, there have been a number of much smaller terrorist incidents in France over the last few weeks, in which the French Government even deployed military personnel all over the country to help contain these attacks.
President Barack Obama’s upcoming trip to India is shaping up to be a “golden opportunity” to discuss cooperation between the two countries concerning climate change along with a potential deal involving green energy.
The price of oil continued to fall today, dropping to nearly $51 per barrel for Brent crude oil, while already dropping to below $50 per barrel for U.S. oil. The economic impact of this price decline though is highly variable.
When was the last time that you heard of a federal agency giving money to the taxpayer? For the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im), that is business as usual.
As the scale and sovereign culprit behind the attack on Sony were revealed, the world awakens to the specter of an uncomfortable new normal emerging in warfare – cyber terrorism.
January 15 @ 12:30pm – 1:30pm
Join ASP on January 15, 2015 as we welcome Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs Charles H. Rivkin for Economic Diplomacy: How Economic Ties Can Strengthen National Security.
February 4 @ 12:00pm – 5:00pm
Join ASP as we host a conference on February 4, 2015, discussing the challenges facing the Caribbean in securing their energy future and how to move forward in the years to come.