Center for Strategic Communication

Key Reads


Chile Quake Triggers Mass Evacuation and Tsunami Alert
One million people had to leave their homes in Chile after a powerful quake hit the country’s central region.


Refugee Crisis: Hungary Uses Tear Gas, Water Cannons on Migrants at Border
Holly Yan, Ben Wedeman, Milena Veselinovic, Tim Hume / CNN
Hungarian riot police used tear gas and water cannons Wednesday on migrants at the country’s border with Serbia after a group broke through a barrier to try to enter the European Union. 



American Competitiveness


American’s Outlook for U.S. Economy Declines to Four-Month Low
Ali Donaldson / Bloomberg
Americans’ expectations for the economy sank to a four-month low in September as households fretted about financial markets and a global economic slowdown.


What’s Most Likely to Shift Economy Toward Faster Growth? Consumers
Jeffrey Sparshott / The Wall Street Journal
In the coming months, a free-spending consumer may offer the greatest hope for more rapid expansion. Among economists in the survey, more than half of those responding said a bump in consumption offered the biggest upside risk to their forecasts.



Public Diplomacy


Putin’s Propaganda TV Lies About Its Popularity
Katie Zavadski / The Daily Beast
RT, the 10-year-old network formerly known as Russia Today, appears to be misrepresenting its promulgated success at gaining a broad viewership and promoting the Kremlin’s agenda while spending as much as internationally renowned competitors.



National Security & Strategy


Obama Hints at Sanctions against China over Cyberattacks

Julie Hirschfeld Davis / The New York Times
President Obama warned on Wednesday that his administration was ready to take action against China over online attacks carried out by Beijing or its proxies, publicly raising the specter of sanctions a week before President Xi Jinping arrives in the United States for a state visit.


US, Cuba to Resume Mail Service This Year; Other Steps Near
Bradley Klapper / AP
The United States and Cuba should be able to transform their new diplomatic relationship into a deeper commercial partnership before the end of the year with direct postal service to begin and an agreement on regularly scheduled, commercial flights between the two countries, an American official said. Washington also plans to publish new regulations soon making it easier for U.S. citizens to visit the island and do business with its growing ranks of independent entrepreneurs.



Asymmetric Operations


Putin Sees Path to Diplomacy through Syria
Neil MacFarquhar, Andrew E. Kramer / The New York Times
To much of the world, Syria is a scene of unending tragedy, but to President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia it is a golden opportunity, a way out of the isolation he and Russia have endured since the West imposed sanctions over Ukraine — with the added bonus of wagging an “I told you so” finger at the White House.


Why ISIS Fights
Martin Chulov / The Guardian
For them, the conflict that was slicing the country apart was not merely, as the Syrian opposition had seen it, a modern struggle between a ruthless state and a restive underclass. The jihadis instead saw themselves at the vanguard of a war that many among them believed had been preordained in the formative days of Islam.


Thailand Blames Uighur Militants for Bombing at Bangkok Shrine
Thomas Fuller, Edward Wong / The New York Times
The perpetrators, he said, were linked to Uighur militants, radical members of an aggrieved ethnic minority in western China, who struck to avenge Thailand’s forced repatriation of Uighurs to China and Thailand’s dismantling of a human smuggling ring.



Climate Security


Exxon Denies Climate Change But Company’s Own Research Confirmed Fossil Fuel-Global Warming Ties
Rhodi Lee / Tech Times
ExxonMobil was aware of climate change years before the issue became a public concern. Despite this, the company has worked in the forefront of denying climate change.  The oil company is known to have spent millions of dollars to promote climate denial but an investigation by InsideClimate News revealed that Exxon’s own research dating back as early as the 1970s has confirmed the link between the burning of fossil fuels and global warming.



Energy Security


OPEC Assumes Oil Price Will Recover Gradually to $80 in 2020
Grant Smith / Bloomberg
The average selling price of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ crude will increase by about $5 annually to 2020 from $55 this year, according to an internal research report from the group seen by Bloomberg News. Iran and Venezuela said they would like to see a price of at least $70 this month and most member countries cannot balance their budgets at current prices.



Nuclear Security


Obama’s Iran Deal Will Pass Congress, But It Keeps Losing Public Support
Peyton M. Craighill / The Washington Post
American opinions continue to erode when it comes to the Iran nuclear deal. A bare 51 percent majority supports the agreement and 41 percent oppose it, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.


US Threatens North Korea with ‘Severe Consequences’ If It Flouts Nuclear Ban
The Guardian
North Korea would face “severe consequences” if it continued with its announced decision to restart a nuclear reactor, the US secretary of state, John Kerry, has said.  Pyongyang has said it is restarting the long-mothballed Yongbyon reactor, which is capable of producing weapons-grade plutonium, and has threatened to launch a rocket, a move seen internationally as a test of ballistic missile technology.



On Our Flashpoint Blog


Admiral Fallon Testifies Before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs
Sam Hickey
On September 09, ASP Board Member Admiral William Fallon testified on the Implications of a Nuclear Agreement with Iran before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. He was joined in testifying before members of Congress by General Charles Wald, Vice Admiral John Bird, and Leon Wieseltier who is the Isaiah Berlin Senior Fellow in Culture and Policy at the Brookings Institute.


Brigadier General Stephen A. Cheney Interviewed on Climate Change
Ngoc H. Le
Brigadier General Stephen Cheney, USMC (Ret.) CEO of the American Security Project talked about climate change in an exclusive Climate TV interview for The Climate Group.


Understanding the Importance of Iraqi Unity
American Security Project
My return home from the Middle East confronted me with a major U.S. foreign policy debate: how to counter the Islamic State of Iraq (ISIL), also known as “Daesh.” In DC, policy critics are overwhelmingly fixated on the Obama Administration’s alleged lack of strategy, but actions in Iraq by Iraqis will be the deciding factor in this fight.


Syrian Refugee Crisis Threatens the Security and Stability of the Middle East
Anil Powers
The civil war in Syria is in its fourth year with no clear end in sight.  While battles rage on between the forces of the Assad regime and rebel groups, civilians leave their homes and flee the country.  With millions having already fled Syria and still more to follow, a major refugee crisis exists that threatens the security and stability of the entire Middle East.

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