Center for Strategic Communication

Key Reads

Ash Carter: Iran deal features defense backstop
Ash Carter / USA Today
With an agreement, the military option stays on the table and becomes more effective

‘I was only hoping to provide a better life for my children,’ father of drowned migrant boy says

Mark MacKinnon / The Globe and Mail

Had the rubber dinghy carrying Alan Kurdi and his family made it to their destination – the Greek island of Kos – they would have just been four more faces in the tide of humanity that has crossed the frontiers of Europe and the West this year.

White House ‘monitoring’ reports Russian military is in Syria


The White House on Thursday said it was closely monitoring reports that Russia is carrying out military operations in Syria, warning such actions, if confirmed, would be “destabilizing and counter-productive.”

American Competitiveness

U.S. Adds 173,000 Jobs in August

David Harrison and Eric Morath / Wall Street Journal

U.S. employment growth slowed in August, but the unemployment rate fell more than expected due to a smaller labor force.

U.S. Trade Gap Narrows in July

Anna Louise Sussman / Wall Street Journal

Exports increased 0.4% to $188.5 billion, despite a strong dollar and economic weakness in major trading partners such as China and Europe.

National Security & Strategy

Chinese Navy Ships Came Within 12 Nautical Miles of U.S. Coast

Jeremy Page and Gordon Lubold / Wall Street Journal

Chinese navy ships off the coast of Alaska in recent days weren’t just operating in the area for the first time: They also came within 12 nautical miles of the U.S. coast, making a rare foray into U.S. territorial waters, according to the Pentagon.

Victory Day celebrations: Parade’s end

The Economist

AFTER weeks of market mayhem, it must have made a nice change for Xi Jinping, China’s president, to be reviewing ranks of smartly-dressed people who move in perfect synchronicity and do exactly what he tells them. Vast military parades may have gone out of fashion elsewhere, but Asian countries still like to strut their stuff. After displays of hardware and prowess in India, Pakistan, Russia and Taiwan this year, China held the most vainglorious march-past yet under clear blue skies (especially seeded for the purpose) in Tiananmen Square on September 3rd.

Asymmetric Operations

The American Veterans Who Fight ISIS
Dion Nissenbaum / Wall Street Journal

Bruce Windorski could hear Islamic State fighters taunting him as he peered down the moonlit Syrian village street early this year. Their voices were getting louder, and their aim seemed to be getting better.

Islamic State ‘blows up Palmyra funerary towers’


Jihadist militants from Islamic State (IS) have blown up three funerary towers at the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria’s antiquities chief has said. Maamoun Abdul Karim said they included the Tower of Elahbel, built in AD103 and one of the best-preserved.
Climate Security

Climate change: western states fail to fulfil pledges to developing countries

Karl Mathiesen / The Guardian

The US and other countries need to pay up their $5.8bn of outstanding pledges to help developing countries to cope with climate change or risk derailing already fragile climate talks, the head of the UN’s Green Climate Fund has said.

Global warming intensified the record floods in Texas and Oklahoma

John Abraham / The Guardian

A new study finds a human fingerprint in the wettest month on record in Texas and Oklahoma

Energy Security

White House says Obama, Saudi’s Salman will discuss energy market


President Barack Obama will discuss the global energy market with Saudi’s King Salman when the two leaders meet at the White House on Friday, Obama’s deputy national security advisor, Ben Rhodes, said on Wednesday.

Nuclear Security

Saudi Arabia’s King Comes Knocking

Dan de Luce / Foreign Policy

With the Iran deal done, King Salman is in Washington looking for reassurance – and warships.

The Senate’s next Iran battle

Seung Min Kim / Politico

With the survival of President Barack Obama’s Iran deal now all but assured, fans and foes of the accord are pivoting to 10 Democratic holdouts in the Senate.

On Our Flashpoint Blog

Wind Energy’s Production Tax Credit: Opportunities Created by the Clean Power Plan

Andrew Landrum
The United States’ wind industry has reached a critical point in its development. Recent innovations, supported by federal and state programs and private sector investment, position the industry to assume a critical role in future state compliance strategies mandated by the Clean Power Plan (CPP).

The Arctic at the Center of World Affairs

Andrew Holland

The Arctic is now at the center of world affairs. What was once a frozen ocean, closed to all but the most intrepid explorers, is now a venue for oil and mineral exploration, cargo transit, and even tourism.

Risks of Arming Syrian Opposition Group Against ISIS

Anil Powers

As the quest to fight and eliminate the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL/Daesh) continues, the US government has considered many options to secure victory, including aiding opposition groups in the region.  One group that has surfaced as a potential ally is Ahrar al-Sham, a large opposition force in Syria.  Although the group is more than willing to fight ISIS, the US government remains skeptical when it comes to providing monetary aid and weaponry because of the group’s Islamist affiliations.

Iranian Human Rights Defenders Coming Out Massively in Support of the Iran Deal

American Security Project
Dr. Trita Parsi, recent panelist for ASP’s event Understanding the Iran Deal on August 4, 2015, is in the news again regarding the Iran Deal. In an article published by The Huffington Post, Dr. Parsi pointed out that numerous Iranian human rights defenders gain out in support of the deal

Upcoming Events

Conference – Cyber Security: Risk, Recovery, Resilience
September 16 @ 12:00pm – 5:00pm
ASP will host a half day conference to discuss the issues surrounding cyber security and challenges we will face moving forward.


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