Center for Strategic Communication

ASP: In Case You Missed It…

12 February 2015


International News Coverage


Middle East, Terrorism and Counterterrorism


Islamic State interview claims widow of Paris attacker sheltered in Syria

Griff Witte and Brian Murphy / The Washington Post

The partner of one of the assailants from last month’s terrorist attacks in Paris says she is being sheltered by the Islamic State in Syria, according to a purported interview in an online magazine posted Thursday by the militant group.

Al Qaeda fighters seize Yemen army base, U.N. warns of civil war

Mohammad Mukhashaf / Reuters

Al Qaeda-linked fighters seized a large army base in a dawn attack in southern Yemen on Thursday, militants and residents said, hours after the United Nations warned that the country was on the brink of civil war.




Ukraine cease-fire agreed but doubts persist it will bring peace

Sergei Loiko and Carol Williams / Los Angeles Times

After two days of hard negotiations, the leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France announced Thursday that they had crafted a new peace plan for eastern Ukraine but the accord was immediately met with skepticism over its power to end the war.


Greece Backtracked on Plan to Extend Bailout

Andrea Thomas and Gabriele Steinhauser / The Wall Street Journal

Greece initially agreed to consider an extension of its bailout program at a meeting of Eurozone finance ministers on Wednesday before abruptly backtracking, dashing hopes of a quick resolution to the standoff between Athens and its creditors.


The Americas


Death toll of explosion on Brazilian oil ship rises to 5

Stan Lehman / Associated Press

Two bodies were found inside an oil ship that exploded off Brazil’s coast, increasing the death toll to five, the oil workers union said Thursday.




Egypt court orders release of Al-Jazeera English journalists

Maggie Michael / Associated Press

An Egyptian judge on Thursday ordered the release on bail of a pair of Al-Jazeera English journalists being retried on terror-related charges, bringing cheers from their families who have sought to get them out of detention for more than a year and are hoping for a resolution in the case.


Nigeria Election Delay Raises Red Flags at Home, Abroad

Michelle Faul / Associated Press

The six-week delay in Nigeria’s presidential election has raised red flags both in the international community and among local political and civil rights groups, with many concerned about the independence of the courtry’s electoral commission and whether the military hierarchy had too much say in the matter.




China offers to mediate in stalled Afghan Taliban peace talks

Maria Golovnina / Reuters

China offered on Thursday to mediate in stalled efforts to engage the Afghan Taliban in peace negotiations, reflecting its desire to play a more active role in a region it sees as part of its sphere of influence.


ICG Warns of Growing Radicalization in Central Asia

Odil Ruzaliev / Voice of America
The International Crisis Group has warned of growing radicalization in Central Asia, with an increase in the number of Islamic State recruits from the region.



Energy Security, Science and Technology, Climate Change

U.N. climate deal set to rely persuasion, not coercion

Alister Doyle / Reuters

A U.N. deal to fight global warming due in 2015 is set to avoid tough penalties for nations that fail to keep their promises, relying instead on persuasion and peer pressure, delegates at climate talks said on Thursday.


Congress passes Keystone XL bill, Obama expected to veto

Timothy Gardner / Reuters

The Republican-led Congress gave final passage on Wednesday to a bill to approve the long-pending Keystone XL pipeline, a measure that next goes to President Barack Obama, who has vowed to veto it.


US faces worst droughts in a 1,000 years, predict scientists

Suzanne Goldenberg / The Guardian

The US south-west and the Great Plains will face decade-long droughts far worse than any experienced over the last 1,000 years because of climate change, researchers said on Thursday.


On Our Flashpoint Blog


Whitman: stakes are too high for partisanship on climate change

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.”


The Strategic Push for Trade

Hugo Grondel

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.”


Caribbean Energy Security Conference-Panel 3 Review

William George

The final panel delineated the prominent energy issues facing the Caribbean and offered prescriptions for how to deal with these problems.


Caribbean Energy Security Conference- Panel 2 Review

William George

The second panel discussed policy challenges and viable energy alternatives to fossil fuels in the region in an effort to reduce energy dependence. Natacha Marzolf of the Inter-American Development Bank discussed her institution’s efforts in the Caribbean, including funding for infrastructure and green energy projects. Ms. Marzolf stated that these projects can potentially result “in a 20-25% reduction of fossil fuel dependence.”


Caribbean Energy Security Conference- Panel 1 Review

William George

The first panel examined the complex overlap of geopolitics and Caribbean economics. The panelists discussed the impact of falling oil prices, Venezuela’s spiraling economy, and Cuba’s potential role in the region moving forward


U.S. Made “Plantibody” vs. Ebola

Luke Lorenz

ZMapp burst from obscurity when it was used for the treatment of two American aid workers who had contracted the Ebola virus in Liberia. While analysis of the results of the drug are ongoing, we do know that both Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol survived their encounter with the virus and that their conditions rapidly improved after receiving the ZMapp antibody.


ASP Statement on Climate Change in 2015 National Security Strategy (NSS)

The American Security Project

“…the Obama Administration released its second official National Security Strategy (NSS), and for the first time it will list climate change as one of the top threats facing the US. While the Obama Administration has consistently placed emphasis on climate change as a significant threat to national security, this new NSS delves further into the research…”
Upcoming Events
Obama’s National Security Policy: A New Assessment

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.


Discussion with Gov. Christine Todd Whitman: Climate Change Calls for Clean and Safe Energy

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

Effective Measures for Tackling Climate Change — Divestment

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.


White Paper – Military Public Diplomacy

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.


Fact Sheet: Yemen (2015)

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.


Libya: On the Brink
Giancarlo Lima
This report analyzes the recent events that have placed Libya on its current path. In order to understand events on the ground, this report includes a breakdown of key Libyan parties and figures as well as an examination of the economic and energy dimensions of the conflict. The report then concludes with a look forward for Libya and recommendations for the U.S. and international community.

The post What We Are Reading appeared first on American Security Project.