Center for Strategic Communication

Key Reads


Putin Bombs Syria, Orders U.S. Out
Nancy A. Youssef / The Daily Beast
A Russian general told U.S. officials to quit flying over Syria just before Moscow’s air force blitzed non-ISIS targets.


Japan’s Leader Shinzo Abe Triples Aid to Address Mideast Refugee Crisis
Rick Gladstone / The New York Times
Projecting himself as the leader of a resurgent and more outgoing Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe used his United Nations speech on Tuesday to announce a vast increase in aid to people uprooted by mayhem in the Middle East.



American Competitiveness


Global Stocks Rebound at End of Bruising Quarter
Tommy Stubbington / The Wall Street Journal
Global stocks climbed Wednesday, rebounding at the end of the worst quarter for many major markets since 2011.  Indexes in Asia and Europe also posted strong gains. The Stoxx Europe 600 was 2.6% higher early afternoon, but was also headed for its worst performance since the third quarter of 2011.


ADP Says U.S. Economy Added 200,000 New Jobs in September
Jeffry Bartash / MarketWatch
Companies in the U.S. private sector added 200,000 jobs in September, according to the large payroll processor ADP. Economists were expecting an increase of about 190,000 vs. a revised 186,000 gain in August.



National Security & Strategy


U.S. Pulls Spies from China after Hack
The United States is pulling spies from China as a result of a cyberattack that compromised the personal data of 21.5 million government workers, a U.S. official said Tuesday.


Top NATO General: Russians Starting to Build Air Defense Bubble Over Syria
Thomas Gibbons-Neff / The Washington Post
While Russia’s stated goal in moving into Syria is to fight the Islamic State, NATO’s top commander believes Russia’s new presence includes the first pieces of an intricate layer of defensive systems deployed to hinder U.S. and coalition operations in the region.



Asymmetric Operations


U.S. Strikes Taliban-Held Land Near Kunduz Airport as Afghan Crisis Deepens
Joseph Goldstein / The New York Times
American warplanes bombarded Taliban-held territory around the Kunduz airport overnight, and Afghan officials said American Special Forces were rushed toward the fighting. But by Wednesday morning, the crisis in northern Afghanistan had deepened, as the Taliban continued to surge outward from Kunduz, the major city that the militants captured on Monday.


Fighting ISIS Online 
David Talbot / MIT Technology Review
Extremist groups have long used the Internet, and citizens have long left home to fight for their countries’ enemies. But ISIS stands apart in the way it’s mastered online propaganda and recruitment.


Pentagon: We Have ‘Paused’ Receiving New Recruits for Syria Training Program
Kristina Wong / The Hill
The Pentagon said Tuesday that its program to train and equip moderate Syrian rebels to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has temporarily stopped receiving new recruits at its training sites. “We continue to recruit and vet potential participants for the [train and equip] program. As we review the program, we have paused the actual movement of new recruits from Syria,” Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook said.


Yemen Conflict: Iranian Boat ‘Carrying Weapons’ Seized
The vessel, carrying shells and rockets, was intercepted 241km (150 miles) south-east of the Omani port of Salalah on Saturday, a statement said.



Climate Security


Bank of England’s Carney Warns of Climate Change Risk
At a gathering of leading insurers at Lloyd’s of London, Mark Carney pointed out the rapid increase in weather-related catastrophes and the jump in both the physical and financial costs.


Getting to $100 Billion in Climate Change Aid
Eduardo Porter / The New York Times
The world’s advanced industrial nations committed to “mobilizing jointly $100 billion a year by 2020, to address the needs of developing countries.” The money was to come from “a wide variety of sources, public and private, bilateral and multilateral, including alternative sources of finance.”



Energy Security


Oil Prices Hold Gains on Mixed EIA Inventory Report
Oil prices rose after a brief dip as government data showed a drop in crude stockpiles at the crucial Cushing, Oklahoma delivery point, despite a surge in total U.S. crude stocks last week that outstripped expectations of a small increase.


The 20 Percenters: Nuclear Energy Faces Reality – and Its Likely Decline
Alan Neuhauser / U.S. News & World Report
Nuclear energy, once a symbol of American ingenuity, the fulfillment of the futuristic promise of near-limitless electricity and near-zero emissions, may soon face an economic meltdown.



Nuclear Security


Parties in Iran Nuclear Deal Aim for Implementation in Early 2016
Laurence Norman / The Wall Street Journal
With the agreement now backed by a United Nations resolution and with efforts to defeat the accord in the U.S. Congress having failed, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and counterparts from the other nations discussed Monday next steps for putting the deal into effect—and possible hurdles ahead.


Jeremy Corbyn: I Would Never Use Nuclear Weapons If I Were PM
Patrick Wintour / The Guardian
Jeremy Corbyn would instruct the UK’s defense chiefs never to use the Trident nuclear weapons system if he became prime minister in 2020, the new Labour leader has confirmed.



On Our Flashpoint Blog


Rethinking NATO Article 5: Challenges to Collective Security in the Cyber Era
Steffen Westerburger
According to NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, “cyber is now a central part of virtually all crisis and conflicts”. In the 2014 Wales Summit Declaration the alliance especially focused on invoking Article 5 in case of a cyber-attack: “A decision as to when a cyber-attack would lead to the invocation of Article 5 would be taken by the North Atlantic council on a case-by-case basis” (ibid.).


The Iran Nuclear Agreement & Congress’s Role
Sam Hickey
The dangers of nuclear weapons programs span a spectrum of catastrophe: from a meltdown at a nuclear reactor, to a state detonating a nuclear weapon, to terrorists setting off a dirty bomb.  The paradox of the security and insecurity that nuclear weapons concurrently provide has yet to be reconciled, but for now, the U.S. must provide direct aid to the international institution responsible for maintaining the peaceful use of nuclear science and technology; the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).


ASP in Colorado: Climate Change and Security in the Heartland
Porter Brockway
On Wednesday and Thursday, September 9th and 10th, representatives of the American Security Project visited Denver, Colorado and Colorado Springs, Colorado, for a series of meetings, public events, and briefings on how climate change is affecting security, how institutions in the region are planning for it, and how.

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