Center for Strategic Communication

Key Reads


Missing Russian Jet Pilot ‘Alive and Well’ in Syria
A Russian pilot who went missing after his jet was shot down by Turkey while taking part in air strikes over Syria was rescued in a 12-hour operation involving special forces, Russia says.


Molenbeek Mayor Received Terror Suspects List Including On-the-Run Salah Abdeslam One Month Before Paris Attacks
Isabelle Fraser / The Telegraph
The Mayor of the Brussels district of Molenbeek received a list with the names of more than 80 suspected jihadists living in the area just one month before the Paris attacks. The New York Times reported that on this list attacks mastermind Abdelhamid Abaaoud, and the two brothers who took part – Brahim and Salah Abdeslam – who remains at large.



American Competitiveness


Three Ways to Profit from $78 Trillion in Global Infrastructure Investment
Henry To / Forbes
For China and the rest of the developing Asia region, including India, this is just the beginning of a major overhaul and infrastructure spending package from now until 2030. More specifically, China, with $3.53 trillion of foreign reserves, over $5 trillion of annual gross savings, and the IMF’s recent approval of its currency, the yuan, as one of the world’s five reserve currencies, has both the means and the motivation to jump start a new wave of infrastructure spending in the developing Asian region.


U.S. Economy Grew at a Better Pace than Expected
Patrick Gillespie / CNNMoney
The economy grew by 2.1% between July and September, according to the Commerce Department. That’s better than its first estimate of 1.5%.



National Security Strategy


NATO Faces New Mideast Crisis after Downing of Russian Jet by Turkey
Hugh Naylor, Andrew Roth / The Washington Post
NATO faced being thrust into a new Middle Eastern crisis on Tuesday after warplanes from member state Turkey shot down a Russian jet that Turkish officials said had violated their country’s airspace on the border with Syria.



Asymmetric Operations


The Origins of Jihadist-Inspired Attacks in the U.S.
Sergio Pecanha, K.K. Rebecca Lai / The New York Times
All of the Sept. 11 attackers entered the United States using tourist, business or student visas. Since then, most of the attackers in the United States claiming or appearing to be motivated by extremist Islam were born in this country or were naturalized citizens. None were refugees.


Bipartisan Team of Lawmakers Says Throwing Out Assad Now Will Only Strengthen ISIS
Carl Wicklander / IVN
A team of bipartisan lawmakers has introduced a bill designed to end what they call “the illegal, counter-productive war to overthrow the Syrian government of Assad.” U.S. Reps. Tulsi Gabbard, a Hawaii Democrat and Austin Scott, a Georgia Republican, issued a press release on Friday for HR 4108, their bill to stop the flow of funds to groups fighting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.


Emirates Secretly Sends Colombian Mercenaries to Fight in Yemen
Emily B. Hager, Mark Mazzetti / The New York Times
The United Arab Emirates has secretly dispatched hundreds of Colombian mercenaries to Yemen to fight in that country’s raging conflict, adding a volatile new element in a complex proxy war that has drawn in the United States and Iran.


U.S. Military Report Concludes Human Error Led to Afghan Hospital Bombing
Gordon Lubold / The Wall Street Journal
A combination of errors contributed to a U.S. warplane inadvertently bombing a hospital in Afghanistan last month, resulting in the deaths of at least 30 people, including doctors and patients, a U.S. military report concludes.



Climate Security


Climate Change Makes Past Five-Year Period the Warmest on Record: WMO
Arthur Neslen / The Guardian
“The state of the global climate in 2015 will make history as for a number of reasons,” the WMO’s secretary-general, Michel Jarraud, told a press conference in Geneva. “2015 is likely to be the hottest year on record, with ocean surface temperatures at the highest level since measurements began. It is probable that the 1C Celsius threshold will be crossed. This is all bad news for the planet.”


Eight Common Questions about Paris Climate Talks Answered
Lisa Friedman, Climate Wire / Scientific American
Diplomats from more than 190 countries will gather on an airfield in Le Bourget, just outside the French capital, to negotiate a new international agreement on climate change through the United Nations.



Energy Security


America to Decide Whether a Nuclear Reactor Can Outlive a Human
Jonathan Crawford / BloombergBusiness
The U.S. is set to become the first nation to decide whether it’s safe to operate nuclear power plants for 80 years, twice as long as initially allowed.


Plasma: A Clean Energy Game Changer?
Anmar Frangoul / CNBC
Advanced Plasma Power (APP) has developed a process called Gasplasma, which combines gasification and plasma treatment to convert waste into two products: a hydrogen-rich synthesis gas and an inert product it calls Plasmarok. The firm says it has applications as a high value construction material.



Nuclear Security


Iran Nuclear Deal to Enter into Force Early January: Deputy FM
Business Standard
Iran expects July’s landmark nuclear deal with major powers to enter into force in early January, when Tehran will have implemented its commitments, Iran’s deputy foreign minister said today.



On Our Flashpoint Blog


The Weekly Fusion: A Look at Current Advancements in Fusion Energy
Ricky Gandhi
The future of fusion is constantly being unfolded in front of our eyes, as every week there is some breakthrough in new technologies and designs in the nuclear fusion sector of energy. Since there is such a wealth of information, I have gathered and consolidated a list of articles geared toward the advancement of making fusion energy a reality, from within the past week.


Global Security Forum 2015
Sam Hickey
On Monday, November 16th, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) hosted the Global Security Forum 2015 in Washington, DC. The event featured panels of government officials, think tank fellows, and business professionals to discuss the major national security issues facing the nation and the possible solutions to these bedeviling quandaries.


Lt. General Norman Seip, USAF (Ret.) Joins ASP Board of Directors
Maggie Feldman-Piltch
On November 17th, American Security Project’s Board of Directors unanimously confirmed Lieutenant General Norman “Norm” Seip, USAF (Ret.) as its newest member. Lt. General Seip has been an active member of ASP’s Consensus for American Security and regular participant on the National Security and Climate Change Tour in recent years.


Unlocking the Secrets of Cyber Security Hazards
Maggie Feldman-Piltch
Security products are like crack to security professionals—they just cannot get enough. These products appear to be the panacea practitioners are seeking, but they often are not what they seem. They do not always solve problems, and they leave security experts continually looking for yet more new products, solutions and techniques for managing cyber risk.


Event Review: TPP – The Implications of the Trans-Pacific Partnership for Global and Regional Stability
Maggie Feldman-Piltch
On Thursday, November 19th American Security Project hosted “TPP: Implications of the Trans-Pacific Partnership for Global and Regional Stability.” The conversation included Ambassador Carl Worker, Charge d’Affaires at the New Zealand Embassy; BGen. Stephen A. Cheney, USMC (Ret), CEO of American Security Project; Minister Kanji Yamanouchi is Minister for Economic Affairs, Embassy of Japan; and Dr. Rob Shapiro, CEO of Sonecon.



Upcoming Events


Department of Defense Action on Climate Change
December 11 @ 12:00pm – 1:30pm
On Friday, December 11, ASP will host Maureen Sullivan, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Environment, Safety & Occupational Health. Two members of ASP’s Board of Directors, Vice Admiral Lee Gunn, USN (Ret.) and BGen Stephen Cheney, USMC (Ret.) will also report on what they have learned as a part of ASP’s national climate security tour, and how important the DoD’s efforts on climate change are for national climate preparedness.



ASP Recently Published


Perspective – Alleviating the Resource Curse
American Security Project
The goal is to increase transparency and provide the public with greater access to information related to the payments that U.S.-listed companies make to foreign governments to extract oil, gas, and mineral resources. The rulemaking has been delayed by lawsuits and SEC inaction. But now the SEC has an opportunity to put in place a policy for disclosure that is accessible and effective.

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